Did you know?
On this very day, 15 years ago, Greg Miller saw his 700th bird while doing the famous BIG YEAR?
In 1998 Greg Miller, Al Levantin and Sandy Komito were real birders depicted in the book, The Big Year: A Tale of Man, Nature and Fowl Obsession by Mark Obmascik. All three of the guys joined Shearwater Journeys' pelagic trips, hoping to tick as many seabirds as possible. It was an El Nino year. Seabirds were really hot. And, I do mean really HOT!
Greg Miller would tick the following five species:
#697 CRAVERI'S MURRELET, above, A gem of a bird!
#698 SOUTH POLAR SKUA, above, the biggest, baddest pirate of the sea.
#699 FLESH-FOOTED SHEARWATER, above, a bird one usually needs to make 10 trips to find.
#700 RED-BILLED TROPICBIRD, above, a glittering diamond of a seabird!
#701 XANTUS'S MURRELET, which has since been split into two species: SCRIPP'S MURRELET, above, and GUADALUPE MURRELET which is the species that Greg saw that magical day. Any one of these seabirds would have been considered, "good." But, as Greg says, "Seeing all five species in one day was jaw dropping!"
AND, YOU KNOW WHAT ELSE?
THESE FIVE SPECIES OF SEABIRDS HAVE NOT BEEN RECORDED ON THE SAME DAY SINCE!
GREG MILLER, YOU ARE ONE BLESSED BIRDER!
Many thanks to ace pelagic trip leader and photographer, Dave Pereksta for the images in this blog.
All images, copyright, Dave Pereksta. Please do not use without permission.
Tomorrow begins our Pelagic Parade of Seabird Trips!
Jump on Board!