I was so excited—I was flying to Washington to visit our daughter and her family. Of course, the main point of the trip was to hug our baby granddaughter, but I was also hoping to do a bit of birding while in a different state. The problem was, I didn’t know a single birder near Everett (north of Seattle), I didn’t know where the good birding sites were, and even if I did, the roads were unfamiliar enough (and traffic crazy enough) that I was sure I’d get lost.
I checked ebird, looked up the Washington birding trail, and visited local organizations’ websites and rare bird sightings lists. It took me hours, and I never really got a sense of where to go. Finally, armed with a few potential destinations and my daughter’s car (complete with GPS), I scheduled one morning for the birds.
The results were unspectacular. I saw few birds and took fewer photos. If only there was a website that included recent sightings, maps to seasonal hot spots, and contact information for local birders!
Well, now there is. A birder named Josh Wallestad has created a new site called Birding Across America. His goal is to provide a comprehensive website for birders traveling to unfamiliar places, who want to make the most of their limited time there.
As I mentioned, the site is brand new. It needs your input. (There are also a few bugs.) More importantly, if enough of us contribute, this could become a very valuable resource. I urge you to read his article at Birding is Fun, then click over to BirdingAcrossAmerica.com and sign up. Maybe my next trip to visit family will include some new birds as well.