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Askewed Birding Anorakism

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Birding's a funny ol' game he said in cliched fashion.
I have often felt uneasy about, for lack of a better term, "Birding Culture". 
You can't stop it, I realize that, it's inevitable. Most subsections or tranches of society will invariably go down the route of developing their own customs, idiosyncrasies and terminologies. 
It still, however, more often than not, feels off to me, especially the creation or incorporation of language for our own purposes. 
Dipping, stringing, even the use of the word Gank, (which I generally adore) can at times feel weird for me. An aberration of the English language.
It's consequently ironic, therefore that I would engineer a term to describe an aspect of birding. Askewed Birding Anorakism, hereafter referred to as ABA, is a term I use to describe a particular mindset in birding. I describe this as any birding viewpoint which refuses to, or simply can't, touch base with reality or how the rest of the human populace …

The Hallowed Honeymoon Hummingbird Hunt - Costa Rica - Part 7 - Rancho Naturalista - Day 1

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Birding began early at Rancho Naturalista, far earlier than dawn, as sometime around 3 a.m I was awoken by a singing Mottled Owl just outside the window. Grabbing my torch, I, ninja-like, slunk out onto the balcony, but despite the bird sounding as though it was right on top of me, I could not locate it in the dense trees.
I didn't get much sleep after that, half dozing until around 4.45, when I heard one of the staff hauling the prophesied coffee up to the balcony.
Mornings at Rancho Naturalista tend to start at the Hummingbird feeders with a giant mug of native, Costa Rican coffee in hand, and with the night's sleep I had, this sounded like heaven. It was 3 mugs in the end.
We mooched out in twilight and it wasn't long before Hummingbirds were flitting in to feed. 
Identifying Hummingbirds in dim light is difficult when dealing with all "dark" species, but our first lifer was obvious due to it's large white belly, White Necked Jacobin. These were abundant,…

Winter Is Coming

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There was a distinct chill in the breeze on Saturday morning, but the weather looked good for raptor migration so I made my way to Saltfjarden for late morning.
Big Sky at Saltfjarden
There had been a couple of Pallid Harriers in the area the previous evening, so I was hoping to connect with some of these.
A few Hen Harriers were the past I saw in terms of that family.
But accipters were moving in numbers and I counted around 40+ Goshawk of various ages around the Saltfjarden, Jarso area.
A few White Tailed Eagles, hobby and Honey Buzzards were also moving, with one Rough Legged Buzzard to top things off.
Crane staging numbers were pretty good too. I love the sound of these dinosaurs.
The fields at the car park held a few Red Throated pipits calling. Typical for this time of year.
Sunday I started out walking with Kuura at Suomenoja. 
This was pretty productive with good numbers of warblers present in the scrub, highlights of which were Lesser Whitethroat and Blyth's Reed War…