May 23, 2007

Looking for spare Gulf-coast bedroom

158 western kingbird
159 Forster's tern
160 black tern
161 red-headed woodpecker
162 scissor-tailed flycatcher
163 little blue heron
164 bank swallow
(total on this date in 2006: 125)

MAY 23, EAGLE BLUFFS, mostly sunny, 75—Reports of shorebirds dropping in to take advantage of our receding Missouri River flood—who can resist so much exposed mud?—send me to Eagle Bluffs. We see only a distant flock of unknown sandpipers in tight formation.

There are two surprises, though: a western kingbird and scissor-tailed flycatcher, birds of the prairies and plains to the west. Check out that scissor tail!

I may need about 80 more surprises to reach 300. After checking off probable Missouri birds and counting species I might find in Montana and Wisconsin, I can see I'll need a trip to somewhere like Florida or Texas. Howard, I know it's been a long time, but what are you doing for Thanksgiving?


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