Today was the official start of the 5th Annual Youth Birding Competition. The boys have spent the past three months waiting for this trip. By waiting, I mean asking me if today is the day, marking the day off on their calendar, checking all of their birding equipment (field guides, binoculars, spotting scopes), and asking if we can “practice” a bit before the big day.
We’ve practiced the past several weeks, taking small trips to locations on the weekends, getting them acclimated to quick identification. We’ve spent time at Carter’s Lake, the Bartow County Loop, Tanner State Park, Sweetwater Creek State Park, West Point Dam, and every place in-between those locations.
Well, after just three hours of birding today (the competition started at 5:00 pm), the three boys spotted and identified 54 species of birds.
We started the competition up at Fort Mountain State Park and worked our way down to the dam at Carter’s Lake. We spent some time below the dam, in the sparrow field, and over at the lower re-regulation dam. Before it got too late, we made our way back down to the Bartow County Loop, where they have been “practicing”.
The best part of the day, was the fact that all I had to do was drive. It was their job to spot the birds and identify them.
Tomorrow is going to be a much longer day, as we have to get up early so we can begin our day down at West Point Dam. I’ll post more when we return tomorrow night.