Monday, January 12, 2009

Bird New to U.S. Found in Texas

A Pine Flycatcher (Empidonax affinis) in Choke Canyon State Park in Texas, as reported here. The individual in question is said to have been first discovered by Willie Sekula on Decemer 13, 2008, and identified by Martin Reid on January 1, 2009.

The AOU Check-list (1998) describes the range of this species as follows:
Resident from northern Sinaloa, central Chihuahua, southern Coahuila, Zacatecas and San Luis Potosi south in the Mexican highlands to central Oaxaca, Puebla and west-central Veracruz, also (apparently resident) in Chiapas, and Quatemala.
My attention was drawn to the first comment, which is repeated here because of its relevance:
The bird listers that rush to see a bird like this leave a hideously large carbon footprint from air travel and car rental to spend 15 minutes in a remote area with a bird. This is a degenerate hobby. Knowing a few of them, I'd generalize that many are folks who never should have inherited money. Wasteful consumerism is destroying the planet, SAY WHAT??
While I'm not ready to call birding a "degenerate hobby," I do believe that birders need to be more conscious of the impacts of their activities on the environment, and focus more effort on the long-term conservation of the living organisms that they lust after.


Blogger anushka said...

I do not know much about birds.
Kindly see my flycatcher also.
Thank you.
I added you.

January 12, 2009 10:54 PM  
Blogger MrBrownThumb said...

I'm not a birder just a gardener but I have to say I found that comment pretty hideous. A degenerate hobby? I don't think so.

January 13, 2009 5:11 PM  
Blogger SRM said...

Addendum to my post--I should have said that "we birders" should put more effort into considering their impacts on birds. I am an avid birder. I actually tried for the Pine Flycatcher though I did so on my drive home so I drove less than 20 miles out of my way to look for this bird, which I might note may not the rarity first thought (see multiple postings on Texbirds for identification issues). Since I did travel extra miles, I did spent some extra time in the park looking at the other birds there.

January 19, 2009 4:31 PM  

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