Milestone birds

Holy cowbird, I fulfilled one of my 2011 goals already! I planned to work on updating my life list by entering old checklists into eBird over several days, possibly spread out over several weeks or even months. Somehow, though, when I got started on January 1st I really felt an urgent need to finish, which I did on January 3rd. My life list tops out at 543 species. I thought it would be fun to look at what some of my milestone birds were.

World 100: Common Pochard (Flevoland, NL)
World 200: Gray Woodpecker (Gambia)
World 300: Long-tailed Tit (Flevoland)
World 400: Brown Creeper (Lake Co, IL, USA)
World 500: Thayer’s Gull (Lake Co, IL, USA)

My ABA list is at 248. I’m still at that newbie-ish stage of birding and listing where it’s not too hard for me to pick up lifers locally. I think I’ll be able to hit world lifer 550 and Illinois lifer 200 (12 to go) this year.

I also had a look at birds I’ve seen in more than one country. The winner seems to be the House Sparrow, seen in six countries: India, Spain, USA, Canada, Belgium, and the Netherlands. This pathetic list is a testament to my poor list-keeping skills in my early years of birding. Are House Sparrows a good enough excuse to (re)visit much of Europe?

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