2017 Tournament of Tails

4 The Love Of Animals

Playing off the popularity of the NCAA men’s basketball tournament, Petplan’s Tournament of Tails features adoptable pets from 32 shelters across the country vying for the crown of top dog or cat. More importantly, the tournament brings much-needed awareness for … Continue reading → cats dogs people helping animals

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Big Cat Week 2017 on Nat Geo Wild!

4 The Love Of Animals

It’s that time of the year again! Big cats are taking over Nat Geo WILD starting on Monday Feb. 20 at 9/8c. Big Cat Week is an extension of the Big Cats Initiative, which aims to halt the decline of … Continue reading → cats

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2017 Bird Images

10,000 Birds

For the last several years, I have produced a small run of calendars for my fiends and family. The best 12 images of the previous year. As simple as that might sound, over the course of a full year, I will shoot more than 20,000 photos, While that seems like a lot, it works out to about 400 per weekend, if I were to be in the field 50 of 52 weekends of the year. Some of the locations I shoot at, 400 is a quiet day.

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My Birding Goals for 2017

10,000 Birds

Here’s hoping that 2017 is a much better year than 2016! Birding 2017Thank all that is good and holy in the world that the abomination that was 2016 is finally in the books. I know I will be doing my best to make it so, especially from a birding perspective. In order to keep my nose to the grindstone (eyes to the binoculars?) I am setting some goals for myself here. Will I achieve them? Who knows?

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First Phoebe of 2017

10,000 Birds

I saw my first migratory Eastern Phoebe of 2017 this morning, 12 March, at Jamaica Bay Wildlife Refuge, thus kicking off spring for myself over a week early. As I have for the last several years, I will now ask the same question of midwesterners and northeasterners that I ask every year: When did you see your first Eastern Phoebe of 2017? 2017 – 12 March.

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Jochen’s 2017 year list

10,000 Birds

Therefore, this year’s goal is simple: In 2017, I want to enjoy birds as much as possible. Birding 2017 year listYes, here it is, another attempt at keeping a year list. I started keeping year lists – not just blogging about them but really keeping track of what I see each year – as late as 2012, roughly 30 years into my birding career.

2017 40

12 Reasons Why Dogs Help With Depression and Anxiety

4 The Love Of Animals

The World Health Organization declared April 7th, 2017 as World Health Day, a day focusing on mental health, but it’s also a year-long campaign which aims to educate, raise awareness and help people suffering from mental illness. Depression, Anxiety, and … Continue reading →

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Tips for Birding Costa Rica in October, 2017

10,000 Birds

eBird your sightings : Always a worthwhile endeavor but especially for folks like me who want to identify more than 700 species during 2017. The tenth month of the year isn’t one that is commonly associated with birding in Costa Rica but no matter, it should be. Those with binoculars who visit now will still lays eyes on lots of birds.

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Tips for Birding Costa Rica in 2017

10,000 Birds

Wishing all birders who come to Costa Rica in 2017 the best of luck, hope to meet you while watching an antswarm! Are you on your way to Costa Rica? Planning a trip for later this year? Good choice, the birding is fantastic! If not, I hope the following tips will convince you to come on down to this easy birding paradise: 100s of bird species are closer than you think. Yes, hundreds.

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Best Bird of the Weekend (Last of September 2017)

10,000 Birds

Weatherwise around the world, this last weekend of September delivered a sneak preview of what each of us will likely enjoy or endure over the six months. We’re not fully into winter or summer yet, but the scent is in the air. Most of the birds you see these days, however, won’t be sticking around long, so take advantage while you can! On my nature rambles this weekend, I ran into a couple of White-crowned Sparrows.

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2017 starts off with Black-throated Sparrows

10,000 Birds

And so begins another New Year, another chance to start afresh. If you are the type to put together a list of resolutions, or goals, then the chance to make them a reality is upon you. I have never been much of a resolutions sort of guy, I just look back at the previous year make a mental note of what I liked, and what I didn’t. Then, I try to you avoid the bad parts. As has been our tradition, my wife and I head out to some secluded desert spot, between Christmas and New Year’s Eve.

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Best Bird of the Weekend (Second of March 2017)

10,000 Birds

We may be mere weeks away from rolling over into a new season, but the one we’re mired in may feel a lot to you like a permanent climatic moment. Worry not. This too, like everything else, will pass! Brutal cold kept me locked up, which offered a perfect opportunity to appreciate the fifty shades of Northern Cardinals hanging around my house. Seriously, cardinals are both gorgeous and interesting , but their familiarity across most of North America breeds indifference if not contempt.

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Collaborative List – May 2017

10,000 Birds

May saw eBird’s Global Big Day, a collaborative effort that puts our humble endeavours in the shade. Our beats were out waving their binoculars around, contributing to the 50,000 checklists submitted and boosting the total which exceeded 6,500 species. It may be possible to find out how many species the beats found on the big day but, quite frankly, life is too short. Actually, I might admit to a twinge of jealousy that I didn’t get 50,000 checklists to play with.

2017 40

Best Bird of the Weekend (Third of December 2017)

10,000 Birds

With only a few weeks left before we turn the page on 2017, birders around the world have been burning their proverbial candles at both ends to observe as many birds as possible. Did you partake in any Christmas Bird Count excitement this weekend? I have to admit that I abstained from the CBC this year, prizing personal comfort over citizen science. Sign me up for a Memorial Day Bird Count any year!

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Collaborative List – March 2017

10,000 Birds

79 checklists were contributed for 624 birds during March and bring the running total for 2017 to 1162. 13 Jan 2017. 20 Jan 2017. 05 Jan 2017. 01 Jan 2017. 08 Jan 2017. 01 Jan 2017. 05 Jan 2017. 15 Jan 2017. 22 Jan 2017. 07 Jan 2017. 28 Jan 2017. 01 Jan 2017. 07 Jan 2017. 28 Jan 2017. 01 Jan 2017. 27 Jan 2017. 01 Jan 2017. 08 Mar 2017. 02 Jan 2017.

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Where Are You Birding This Second Weekend of March 2017?

10,000 Birds

If your part of the world is dealing with the levels of meteorological turmoil my part is, you’ll remember the wild weather of March 2017 for a long, long time. But even if your local breezes are balmy, let’s hope they’re blowing beautiful birds in. I can’t see myself braving this weekend’s predicted blistering cold just to admire the birds of late winter, so I’ll be watching my feeder.

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Best Bird of the Weekend (Last of March 2017)

10,000 Birds

Your first weekend of spring or fall may have been uneventful in terms of birds, but pace yourself. We still have months of blissful migration ahead of us! Rochester is still wintry, but bird activity among the common species has picked up quite a bit. My best sighting was a Hairy Woodpecker puffed up to fight the cold. Corey’s Best Bird of the Weekend was one of the easiest to decide that he can remember.

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First Bird of the Year, 2017

10,000 Birds

It’s 2017! Birding 2017 first bird of the yearWhat was your first bird of the year? Share it, and the story, in the comment section. Hopefully, it was a good one!

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A Microchip Miracle: The Gift of Reunion

4 The Love Of Animals

Like so many of us who share our lives with a beloved dog, we had our dog Teddy microchipped when he became a permanent family member after a short foster period. And although life is fickle, and nothing we do … Continue reading → guest post pet care pet stories

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Panama Trip Report: April 2017

10,000 Birds

Can a family-focused trip—even to one of the world’s most biodiverse countries—deliver enough opportunities for avian observation to satisfy this serious world birder? If you have kids, you’re probably as curious as I was. The short answer, I’m happy to report, is a resounding yes. With enough planning, you can enjoy a family-friendly, bird-rich vacation in the Panama Canal zone. LODGING. Once you’ve chosen a destination, deciding where to stay tops the list of critical decisions.

Best Bird of the Weekend (First of January 2017)

10,000 Birds

The year 2016 is done and gone and 2017 beckons us onward, bright and new and shiny, hopefully full of birds. Here’s hoping everyone has a wonderful 2017, full of amazing birds and experiences. As birders we love the turn of the calendar as it allows us to start a new year list and take stock of the previous year’s sightings, twitches, dips, and photos.

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Where Are You Birding This Second Weekend of June 2017?

10,000 Birds

Oh, to be birding at Shark Bay in Australia. Mid-June causes confusion in the United States, in that summer hasn’t officially started but life post-Memorial Day definitely carries that summer feeling, Except, of course, that some parts of the country have been downright chilly. What season are we in right now? Conditions vary wherever you are, but take comfort in the fact that birds hang around whatever the season.

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12 interesting facts about cats that you might not know

4 The Love Of Animals

Cats, along with dogs, are the most popular pet in the world. And it’s no wonder – these adorable, cuddly creatures are great at winning over our hearts. But even if we think we know them in detail, there are … Continue reading → cats guest post

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Where Are You Birding This First Weekend of December 2017?

10,000 Birds

Don’t panic yet, but do plan for how you’ll spend the rest of 2017 making this birding year one to remember. At last, we flip to the final page of our antiquated paper calendars and are forced to confront the painful but inevitable reality: we only have one more month to pad our year lists! The denouement starts this weekend. I’ve dipped on a few fancy species recently, so I’ll be watching the wires for their potential return.

2017 40

Where Are You Birding This Last Weekend of April 2017?

10,000 Birds

With April almost over, the real meat of migration fast approaches. At some point, everyone gets hit with a wave of winged travelers zooming towards their breeding or wintering ground. If that time hasn’t come for you yet, get ready. Another weekend of work will keep me off the trail, but luckily Neotropical migrants need a long time to find their way to western NY. Corey will be leading a bird walk at the Queens Botanical Garden for NYC Audubon, and there may still be room for one more.

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Best Bird of the Weekend (Third of February 2017)

10,000 Birds

The third weekend of February seems fairly uneventful, but birders and nature lovers know how to make these days count… by counting. Did you participate in the Great Backyard Bird Count ? I counted birds not at my own feeders but at those of my mother-in-law, where my best sighting was a single Northern Raven that croaked back and forth for hours in the unexpectedly warm winter sun. Corey had an embarrassment of riches to choose from this weekend.

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Best Bird of the Weekend (Fourth of September 2017)

10,000 Birds

Some of us had long weekends and made them count. Some of us had short weekends or none at all and still made them count. No matter how much time you can spare, you MUST respond to the spectacle of migration taking place right now. Though it is still September and not really proper sparrow season yet, Corey still managed to turn up a nice Lincoln’s Sparrow at Kissena Corridor Park on Sunday morning, his first of the fall.

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Best Bird of the Weekend (Last of 2017)

YoungUpstarts

Happy New Year! Now that the odometer on year lists has rolled back to zero, you’re probably eagerly looking forward to beginning the bird hunt anew. But take a moment first to appreciate your final sightings of the year gone by. A confluence of injury, illness, and arctic air conspired to keep me indoors for most of the weekend, with little more than Black-capped Chickadees to observe. Corey did not see many birds this weekend but he saw a few good ones.

2017 44

Where Are You Birding This Third Weekend of September 2017?

10,000 Birds

Fall migration may want for some of the kaleidoscope colors adorning spring birds, but this time of year offers some of the most exciting birding you can ask for. If, that is, you get out and enjoy it! Some interesting avifauna has been popping up in the Rochester area, and I aim to track a few birds down this weekend. Corey becomes such a whirlwind of bird watching during migration that you could practically see him anywhere, although your odds are best around Queens. How about you?

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Best Bird of the Weekend (Second of September 2017)

10,000 Birds

Anyone lucky enough to be high and dry these days can surely appreciate how many birds are on the move. Keep your bins handy, because you never know what you’ll see out there. I was thrilled this weekend to see a bird I haven’t encountered in nearly a decade; maybe American Pipit is common in your parts, but I had to scour the East Spit of Braddock Bay to luck into one.

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Collaborative List – August 2017

10,000 Birds

13 Jan 2017. 20 Jan 2017. 30 Apr 2017. 11 Apr 2017. 05 Jan 2017. 01 Jan 2017. 01 Jun 2017. 08 Jan 2017. 28 Mar 2017. 01 Jan 2017. 07 Jan 2017. 28 Jan 2017. 22 Jan 2017. 15 Jan 2017. 05 Jan 2017. 01 Jan 2017. 07 Jan 2017. 28 Jan 2017. 01 Jan 2017. 27 Jan 2017. 26 Apr 2017. 01 Jan 2017. 09 Apr 2017. 08 Mar 2017. 02 Jan 2017.

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Arthur The Dog Who Crossed the Jungle to Find a Home

4 The Love Of Animals

I was provided a copy of the book Arthur for my review, and the publisher is providing copies for our giveaway. Do you remember the news story not so long ago about a plucky little dog who joined a team … Continue reading → books dogs giveaways

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Best Bird of the Weekend (Second of May 2017)

10,000 Birds

Global Big Day 2017 is in the books, with 15,954 participants submitting 40,698 checklists to eBird accounting for 6,068 species … so far. What a weekend for birders all over the world. I hope you were able to be a part of the festivities. Despite poor conditions, I was able to add a few FOY migrants on Global Big Day, including a snazzy Cape May Warbler (like this one ) at Cobbs Hill Park.

2017 42

House Cats and Big Cats Differ in Size, But That’s About It

4 The Love Of Animals

Written by Suzanne Redfearn for Nat Geo WILD and USA Today Article originally appeared in a special edition of USA Today for Nat Geo WILD Did you know that there are very few differences between your house cat and endangered … Continue reading →

2017 159

Cooking With Cats Coloring Book (and a giveaway)

4 The Love Of Animals

Do you love cats? What about food? Do you also like to color? This book combines all of those wonderful things together for a fun coloring experience! The cats take the cake in their “food cosplay”, such as cat sushi. … Continue reading → cats

Where Are You Birding This Final Weekend of 2017?

10,000 Birds

Now that most of the gift giving and bird counting has been discharged, before the revels and resolutions of the final night of the year, I like to sit–somewhere warm, of course–and consider a cheerful verse from Oliver Herford : I heard a bird sing. In the dark of December. A magical thing. And sweet to remember. “We We are nearer to Spring. Than we were in September,”. I heard a bird sing. In the dark of December.

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Where Are You Birding This Second Weekend of September 2017?

10,000 Birds

If you live in the NYC Metro area, you might want to take up the Seatuck Environmental Association 2017 Birding Challenge. September is as thrilling a month for birding as any and better than most. If you’re not fleeing for your life in the face of a natural disaster or picking up the pieces in the wake of one, you should definitely try to scan some birds this weekend! I’m still trying to find my way to something new around here, which will likely require a trip to the coast.

2017 40

Adorable animals are sharing an important message!

4 The Love Of Animals

Everyone loves videos with animals being adorable and cute. Recently, the Ad Council has crafted three aww-inducing Public Service Ads (PSAs) featuring puppies, baby goats, and hedgehogs! Yes, hedgehogs (of course we had to share that one). Not only are … Continue reading → cute animals

2017 142

Best Bird of the Weekend (First of December 2017)

10,000 Birds

Winter doesn’t officially begin for a few weeks yet, but the birds this far north don’t seem to care about the calendar. We’re seeing all manner of seasonal specialty roll into Rochester. What are you seeing? When I lived in NYC, I couldn’t avoid spotting Hooded Mergansers , even at the local ponds. Now that I’m in the Finger Lakes region, I can’t even chase them down.

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Collaborative List 2017 – February

10,000 Birds

13 Jan 2017. 20 Jan 2017. 05 Jan 2017. 01 Jan 2017. 08 Jan 2017. 01 Jan 2017. 05 Jan 2017. 15 Jan 2017. 22 Jan 2017. 07 Jan 2017. 28 Jan 2017. 01 Jan 2017. 07 Jan 2017. 28 Jan 2017. 01 Jan 2017. 27 Jan 2017. 01 Jan 2017. 02 Jan 2017. 03 Feb 2017. 04 Jan 2017. 07 Jan 2017. 25 Jan 2017. 12 Jan 2017. 07 Jan 2017. 04 Feb 2017.

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Best Bird of the Weekend (First of February 2017)

10,000 Birds

Another Super Bowl has passed and, as predicted , the feathered team fell short. Birds are amazing for a host of reasons, but bringing luck to sports teams may not be their strong suit. My weekend was rather prosaic from a birding perspective, but I took time to appreciate some local Mourning Doves , distinctive not just for their early sunrise plumage but for their species success; I found these doves as plentiful in lush Caribbean forests as they are in Rochester’s inclement winterscape.

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Where Are You Birding This Second Weekend of April 2017?

10,000 Birds

The second weekend of April definitely sits among my favorites of the year, and not just because this is my birthday weekend. Birds that have been away for a while tend to come back around this time. I’m looking forward to seeing them! Depending on which expected species arrive first, I’ll either be heading up to Lake Ontario or down to Conesus Inlet.

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Where Are You Birding This First Weekend of April 2017?

10,000 Birds

The first weekend of April can prove treacherous for twitchers looking for species far afield. Without getting into details, I’ll simply suggest that you take improbable bird reports on Saturday with a healthy grain of salt. Sunday should bring us back to business as usual. I’m working and waiting for better weather, so I’ll probably just spend my weekend studying the field guide for the extremely birdy Central American country I’ll be visiting in a few weeks.

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