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Borrego Springs, CA

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Reached another milestone today

It was a gorgeous day out today, so when I woke up I decided to do the weekly waterbird count.  I’ll be busy tomorrow and Friday, and who knows what the weather will be by Saturday.

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                                                  A pair of Crested Caracaras on a brush pile.

I mixed up the order that I normally use to count the seven sites since I knew I would have to stop at 11:00 for a break in the action.  It was the day for the farewell luncheon for seven of us volunteers that will be pulling out this month.

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                                                          Resting Avocets and Dowitchers.

We not only get treated to lunch, but we also receive some parting gifts to thank us for our service.  This latest stint of mine at Anahuac brought my total hours of volunteering for the US Fish and Wildlife Service to over 6000.  That was a milestone for me. 

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                                                                             Green Heron.

The lunch was tasty, and my parting gift was interesting.  I’ll tell you about it tomorrow after I figure out how to use it.  Flirt male

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After lunch, I went back to the refuge to finish off the count areas.  One of my favorite birds to watch are Black-necked Stilts.  You can certainly see how they got their name…astoundingly long red legs!  As I’ve mentioned before, the birds I’m counting now have certainly changed from the winter.  Thousands upon thousands of various shorebirds are now using the refuge as a place to refuel for their further migration travels. 

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                                                                Scissor-tailed Flycatcher.

Some local nesters have also returned.  It’s an exciting time of the year.  Tomorrow morning I’ll open the VIS while the others handle the 100 first graders.  Then I’ll take fellow volunteers Colin and Denise to the Houston airport so they can make their way home to England.  We’re all doing our migrating one way or the other this month…

Thanks for stopping by… talk to you later,  Judy

38 comments:

  1. Wow, Judy, 6000 hours! That is a major milestone. Thank you for all you've done with your volunteering. You've certainly set the bar high. We've only done 550 volunteer hours in six months between the two of us.

    We've got a lot of work ahead of us to catch up to your mark. Of course, by then you'll be at 12,000 hours... ;c)

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  2. Congratulations! That's something to be proud of.... and... doesn't it feel good to be able to give back for some of the wonders of life that we've received? I can hardly wait to see what your gift is..... my imagination runs wild ;-)

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  3. Thank you for giving 6,000 hours to make the parks better for all of us.

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  4. I have to comment. How cool is that that Colin and Denise came all the way from England to volunteer here. Birding is truly an international community. And congrats to you, Judy, on 6000 hours. Way to go. An admirable achievement.

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  5. WOW Judy, thank you so much for those hours making our wonderful National Wildlife Refuges even better. Can't wait to hear about your gift. That scissor-tailed picture is just amazing. I'd absolutely love to see one up that close.

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  6. Yes, migration will be happening for us too pretty soon!!! Congratulations on your 6000 hours!!!

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  7. Congratulations Judy! What a remarkable INCREDIBLE achievement to reach 6000 hours of service! I'll feel lucky to reach half of that if I can ever get this RV back on the road!

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  8. Haven't been around reading for awhile..busy teaching, but just had to say how fantastic your header photo is (my favorite bird besides a painted bunting) and a big congratulations for all the hours of service you do for our nation.

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  9. Congratulations on your milestone ... that is very impressive.

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  10. Judy, how amazing and rewarding for you to have reached this many hours of service. Congratulations! Beautiful photos tonight!

    On a side note: if you have time will you visit my blog and ID three birds we saw at ANWF. The post is about our time there the other day. It was a pleasure meeting you and hubby and I thank you again for your assistance in pointing us to some locations.

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  11. Wow - 6000 hours. Congrats. I'm looking forward to your parting gift - especially since you have to figure out how to use it.

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  12. I love the shorebirds - they are my favorites. I had some black-necked stilts right here in this campground last year - the 8th of May. So far no great birding here. I'm too early I think. Love the photo of your green heron! :)

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  13. The Black-Necked Stilts are high-steppin' birds--very cool! Also very cool is your 6000 hours of service to adults, children & birds every where! Congratulations and thank you!

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  14. WOW 6000 hours thats fantastic. And doing what you seem to love.
    I love the Scissor - tailed Flycatcher.

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  15. Thank you Judy for the hours of volunteering and thank you also for writing this blog. It has and continues to be a source of beauty, information, enthusiasm, and motivation for me to get out and explore the beauty all around us!

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  16. Sounds you had a wonderful day! Scissor-tailed Flycatcher looks so cute!

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  17. Thank you for your service :). Nice picture of the scissor tail- they usually don't sit sill long enough for a picture.

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  18. Congratulations on racking up so many volunteer hours!

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  19. Congratulations Judy--that is a milestone!

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  20. We just enjoyed watching those goofy stilts and some scissortailed flycatchers on the Texas coast at Port Lavaca. The flycatchers are so very beautiful and graceful!

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  21. Congratulations on the 6000 hours. That is a lot of volunteering...thanks for the great job you do.

    I am so bird ignorant. I have never heard of a Black-necked Stilts but love the looks of it.

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  22. Congrats on the 6000 hours -- and all for one Service too! We are getting ready to do annual volunteer recognitions here at the end of this month and looking at the hours various people put in is informative about their view of life. We're trudging away with lower numbers and between 4 & 6 hours a day we'll be a long time amassing your hours. Kudo's to YOU!

    Love the shot of the Caracaras... I had never seen one until a few years ago and I find them fascinating. Need to get my tushie far enough South to observe them again!

    P

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  23. Congratulations, on your 6000 hours. I wonder how many other volunteers have accumulated such hours with one agency?

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  24. 6000 hours! I never even thought of adding up the hours! Great going Judith! Love the bird photos.

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  25. 6000 hours? I just tried to do the math on weeks and years, but gave up quickly. Suffice to say: Congratulations!!

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  26. an incredible milestone. . .and you seem to enjoy it all. . .thank you!

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  27. Congrats, Judy, on the many hours of volunteerism! All I can figure out is that 6,000 hours is 150 40 hour weeks. Thats almost 3 years of work weeks, unless I may have made a mathematical error, which would not be unusual at all! Its still a most commendable effort!

    Cheers,
    Jo

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  28. Congrats girl. For a gift I will be sending you a pesty cardinal. As soon as I catch him.

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  29. Congratulations on your milestone! That's a lot of hours of free labor - all for a good cause. I just got my 5000 hours at the Desert Museum. No gifts nearly as interesting as yours!

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    1. Congrats to you, too Carole. I can personally attest to how fun it is to go out with you on a tour. And I learned so much as well.

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  30. Congrats, Judy, on your hours. I thought you were way ahead of me but I just got my 6000 hour pin as well as I was leaving Oke.
    The best part of this is that only a few of those hours - the ones trying to make the cash register work, correcting mistakes, and balancing the money at the end of the day - were actually work. Wish everyone could have so much fun.

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  31. Congrats on your milestone. Nice photo of the scissor tailed flycatcher, they are so neat in flight.

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  32. Wow, that is a lot of volunteering.....they are so lucky to get you.

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  33. 'short birds' are so lovely, having them migrated at a secure place must be done. exotic species should never be victimized, moreover, Meet and greet car parking Gatwick
    , provides safe ways for parking over days you don't have to come across any discomfort.

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  34. Counting the waterbirds. must be fun.... seems to be fun and hectic at the same time. but i thing you enjoy it more then you like it so cheer. valet parking gatwick

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  35. Nice Post.Thanks for Sharing this in your Blog

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