On September 10th, 2016 I was invited by Erik Weyhrauch to be part of his team for the Nuthatch Open, sponsored by the Oakland Audubon Society. The rules are pretty simple. It starts at midnight and ends at 3pm. Any bird that is identified in Oakland County can be recorded on the team list. We went by ABA rules and did not use any recording devices and all members of the team had to identify the bird in order to make the list. Other team members included Kevin Rysiewski and Andy Weinrauch.
We began our night at 3am at the American Center Marsh in Southfield and ended the day at Red Oaks Nature Center in Madison Heights. In between we visited many places in Oakland County including Kensington Metropark, fields off of Wixom Rd and a few other places that I don’t remember the name. I bird Macomb County and this was my first opportunity to check out the neighboring county. Erik set up our itinerary and it was awesome. We managed to find 90 species with highlights including Black-billed Cuckoo, Common Nighthawk, Orange-crowned Warbler, Yellow-throated Vireo, Olive-sided Flycatcher and a calling Willow Flycatcher. With Eriks Pishing, Andy’s eyes, Kevins sharp ID skills and my mad driving skills we managed to get first place. The Second place team made up of Mary Trombley, Scott Jennex, Tom Pavlik and Mike Mencotti got 86 species and were right behind us.
We ended the day at Independence Oaks Metropark in Clarkston with some great food and a tally…
Special thanks to Jeff Stacey, Don Burlett and the rest of the very nice people from OAS who let me participate in their open. It was a great time.