It's the start of a new year and the time to start your Big Year if you're going to do it. I'm calling this our Big Year but I'm not trying to be competitive, I just want to keep a record of the birds we see this year. The idea of a Big Year is a competition among birders to see who can see or hear the largest number of different birds within a single calendar year and within a certain geographical area. My boundaries will be the 48 states and I'm only going to count birds I can actually see and recognize. If I can't give it a name that I think is correct, I'm not counting it. I'm doing this with my husband--for the sake of anonymity will call him Rudy. Rudy and I are not professional birders, far from it, but we love it. I'm taking this year to get our status up a notch so we can really call ourselves "birders".
Today a nice start, a Downy Woodpecker (#1) at our suet feeder in the front yard. Perfect view and no question what he was. Rudy and I both saw him. I didn’t see any other birds I could positively identify but I did hear some crows in the distance and a robin in a tree in the lower area. Weather very decent—dry and probably around 50 degrees. Tomorrow is another day.