Wednesday, August 27, 2008

A blow to Tiscornia University

Well, it may not look like much, but unfortunately this photo documents the destruction of the Tiscornia University winter campus...

While this may look like just an ordinary pallet drifted in from the lake, it is actually the shelter for the University of Tiscornia's Waterbird Survey for when the winds are ripping off the lake in nice northwest gales.  Tim and I discovered it in the dunes last fall and rigged it with such amenities as port holes, a shelf, and a pomarasitic jaeger's sillhouette for a logo.  Unfortunately however, it was re-discovered in the last few weeks and moved from its hiding place into the dunes proper and must have been re-dragged down to the water's edge by unidentified persons not realizing the significance of their actions.  Imagine the shock on the face of one coddled waterfowl counter, used to the comforts of his plexiglass outhouse staked down to the rarity-filled shores of Whitefish Point, when he discovers our modest quarter-hut gone upon his return to humble Berrien.  Ah well.

In Bigby news, I at least tallied a Baird's sandpiper though had to walk even north of Jean Kloch to get it since the shorebirds were not foraging south slowly like they usually do.  Tomorrow I hope to start the fall passerine migration and try to start tracking down some of the holes in that category, specifically olive-sided flycatcher.  I've invested in a mosquito-net hat which should let me actually experience the fall passerine migration in the river bottom behind the house.  For the last 2 years I've had to wait for the first cold weather to enjoy the late birds (the kinglets, winter wrens, zonotrichia sparrows etc) but I still need some toughies (gray-cheeked thrush, Philadelphia vireo, pine warbler) that will be September migrants.

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