Monday, February 9, 2015

Types of Posts on Facebook Birding Groups

I live in Pennsylvania right near the border of two other states (DE and NJ), and not a very far drive to another state (MD, in which I grew up and visit regularly), so to keep up on bird happenings, I have to keep an eye on four different states. Which means I belong to many Facebook groups for birding for each of those states, plus more regional groups (both larger and smaller). It gives me a good amount of exposure to what people post in these groups.

If you've ever been in a group like that, or actually on any group or message board or community or list-serv (from the olden days) then you run across the exact same problems. Nothing special to birding groups, but after awhile you see the patterns. You see the same types of posts over and over and the same discussions over and over again, and usually with the vigor of people who think that this is the first time any of this has happened.

It isn't.

In fact, the issues like this caused a split in the Maryland Birding group so that you have that group, a photography group, and a Maryland rare bird group. Yet still you get the same things.

So let's have some fun with this and make a list!


Thursday, January 29, 2015

So You Want to See the Redpolls at the Philadelphia Navy Yard?

Recently there have been some great birds spotted near me in the Philadelphia Navy Yard (note: I've seen it at “Naval Yard” many places, like on eBird, but the official name according to its website is “Navy Yard”). There has been a Vesper Sparrow for weeks now (not bad!), a handful of Common Redpolls (I need those!), and a single Hoary Redpoll (damn, that's a good bird!). If you ever need a reason to go birding there, then those are some pretty good ones.

Vesper Sparrow
Vesper Sparrow at the Philadelphia Navy Yard, by Damon Orsetti

But if you do go, know there are some problems you might come across if you go. So, before you take a trip over to Philadelphia to get your next life bird (and I've run across a few people from many states who showed up to find it), let me guide you through it all so you know where to find it, when to go, and what to avoid.