Thursday, August 25, 2016

Black Turnstone

eBird posts monthly challenges to contributors. Those meeting the goals—numbers of lists per month, lists with breeding notes, lists with birds noted flying overhead—are then placed in a pool from which a single prize of binoculars and bird books are drawn. Your chance of winning are poorer than collecting something from Power Ball. (You have a 1 in 27 chance of winning $4 if you hit the Power Ball.)
I am enjoying this month's challenge to submit bird lists containing at least three photographs. This quest proves entertaining and surprisingly difficult. I did not realize how many birds I identify from a great distance or by call. Along the way, I notice that the links to many of my previous photographic submissions to eBird are corrupted. Before, the images were linked to Flickr or Google Album pages. Now you submit the photos through eBird directly to the Macaulay Library at Cornell University. I have spent the month correcting my list links and moving photos to Macaulay. 

I found a few birds for which I have photographs but have not appeared in this blog. One is this Black Turnstone I from La Jolla, California, on 8 January 2008. This species breeds on the Bering Strait coasts of Alaska and winters along the Pacific Coast from Alaska to Baja California and northwestern Mexico. It occurs on rocky shores, where it flips stones in search of algae, invertebrates, and “all sorts of supratidal jetsam” (Handel and Gill 2001).

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