WILDER SIDE OF OAKLAND COUNTY
Is the American Robin a harbinger of spring? Many people believe so, but the fact of the matter is, some robins never left southeast Michigan and sightings were common all winter. Oakland County is a 365-days-of-the-year home for these much loved, lawn-hopping, worm-slurping birds with rusty-red breasts and cheerful, rather intricate songs.
Wilder Side of Oakland County
I am not a bird-watcher or at least I did not think I was. Here is what I do know:
Hundreds of thousands of folks across our country, maybe even millions, are serious birders that create what the birding in-crowd knows as a ‘Life List.’ That cherished list is a record of every bird species they have ever seen and identified with absolute certainty. I would be ruled out from those prestigious Life List clubs almost instantly because of the words, ‘absolute certainty.’ To my untrained eye and short attention span, a warbler is a warbler, even though 54 different species of warblers are found in North America. I even struggle to find subtle identification marks on many of our common song birds of summer such as the Red-eyed Vireo.
One could say I am just too restless and easily distracted by furry and fanged creatures to focus on a list of birds; I don’t even make shopping lists. People that pursue their personal hobby of chasing after birds to put another name on a list, will think nothing of driving hundreds or even a thousand miles to view a rare species a few days drive away. “Hey Joe, Judy just saw a rare Blue-Beaked Bobolink in the Florida Keys, up for a road trip?” And they are off, driving day and night to add one more name to a list. That’s not for me.