A little late getting this published, so first off, wanted to extend my appreciation for the families that have served (those in theater and those that keep the home going so they can focus on their task at hand) and to those that will choose to protect this great country and her values abroad in spite of those that continue to tear it down from the inside. To those that gave the ultimate sacrifice, there are no words sufficient to thank beyond you will never be forgotten
Now back to your regularly scheduled content.
Good news, I survived my “new endeavor” in running. I still need to get my recollection post out (on my other blog), but as a quick summary I decided to add more challenge to my running passion and decided to move into trail racing. Probably wouldn’t recommend to others to start out in this version of the sport with a half marathon… in a hilly reservoir… with technical sections … and creek crossings. That run is only second to my marathon run in terms of toughness. It also happens to be one of a very few races I had a smile on the entire time. Amazing and needless to say, totally hooked – a round of claps for trails!
Well, actually more like a Clapper – and not the trail kind – rather the Rail kind. This rather large bird is the latest to bear the check mark on my birding list. We came upon this specimen on our birding trip to South Padre Island over the holiday break last December. The South Padre Island Bird Viewing and Nature Center has easily become one of my favorite birding locations adding new birds to my list every time we make it down there. If you have spent any time at all on my Wildlife Blog you already know how amazingly productive that location is thanks to an extensive boardwalk that allows access to the marshes without disturbing the birds. This one was found in nearly the same location where we spotted the Virginia Rail on a previous visit (link here).
Hit the jump to read more about this interesting bird!
Continue reading Clap So I Can See You
It has been a while since I’ve been nearing the end of the month and I still had an open slot in the blog quota. Luckily I still have plenty of fodder to pull from. Probably need to start considering processing more images from the backlog. My Texas queue is starting to run thin (imagine that). In the meantime, thought I would continue to show consideration for the non-birders out there and follow up my last running post with the companion piece. As mentioned in that last post, the Illinois Marathon has options for a two run event – the Friday night 5K (from last post) and the following Saturday morning run. You can choose your poison on the second run. I tackled the full marathon a few years back (felt that one for sure), but they have a 10K and a half to round out the options. My poison this year was the I-Challenge Half.
This year, the race coordinators introduced the long sleeve tech shirt. Definitely more appropriate seeing as how this race is always wet and cold. Not sure I am a fan of the logo or the color this year, however, the medals are OUTSTANDING. Not only are they solid/heavy, they are always very artistic. Think this was the 10th anniversary of this race.
Hit the jump to get the highlights of the event.
Continue reading One More for Two More
Thinking by now my bird averse readers are absolutely fed up with all the bird posts this month.. hell, this year. Admittedly, I’ve definitely narrowed my post themes significantly and for that I apologize – at least to those of you who prefer your birds on a plate with garnish and a fine wine. To my credit, I have thrown in a few wildlife posts that didn’t have wings along with a few recollections. To help right the ship, let’s give some respect to my Alma Mater.
Unfortunately, we’ve been subjected to some pretty horrific sporting years as of late. For the record, I am withholding all donations to the U of I (and my ticket purchases) until they get their sports straightened out – p a t h e t i c. However, I must give complete kudos to the race coordinators for the annual Illinois Marathon.
Hit the jump to read more about the race!
Continue reading Racing ’18
Starting to get those thoughts of doubt, those self-defeating introspections that build over the week heading into race day. Being only a night from toeing the starting line, those inner voices are starting to concern me – did I train enough, are those dull body aches something to be concerned about, is it really going to be that hot, Linda will not be there – what happens if I get hurt and on and on. Something to be said about the numbing effects of repetition – since this happens so regularly, I eventually get past it and remind myself that a) I chose to do this and b) I train really hard for these very days. Wait, that isn’t me reminding me of that, it’s Linda when she gets tired of hearing me whine about it hehehe,. Truth is, there is a bit of extra jitters on this one. If you remember, I previously mentioned I signed up for “a new endeavor” in the realm of self-inflicted pain – that reality is tomorrow. Will have to let you know how it goes in a future post … if by some miracle I survive.
To help get those nerves in check, thought I’d crank out a post. What to post on, hmmmm, oh wait.. no…well, awwwwwwe yes, let’s go with another new bird from our recent trip to the Rio Grande Valley region. Bet that caught you totally off guard – not! Enough with the delay, let’s get to the bird..
Hit the jump to find out what this punked up bird is.
Continue reading Bird Punk
Okay, so I kinda screwed up on my last post. I’ve been going through so many new birds as of late, that I went lax a bit on my paperwork. I made it all the way to end of my post completely under the illusion that the Yellow-Throated Warbler was new to the blog. Granted, there was even a small pat on the back as I closed out the text for that post knowing the list counter was going to move. If you recall, an official tick in the list requires a sufficient picture that reveals the key characteristics, validation of the ID from a trusted source (usually my brother Ron), processing of the image with upload to gallery and then an official blog post. Definitely a bit of work and one of the reasons my official bird count is embarrassingly low. My backlog is fairly sizeable – thus the extra push on new birds over the last several months. The final step in the post is to set the tags. All of a sudden, my editor filled in the rest of the characters when typing in the name of the Warbler Whaaaaat!?! Ugh, that clued me into a previous post which was quickly located from a Georgia birding trip. Drats.
Decided to remedy that snafu tonight. I can guarantee tonight’s featured feathered friend (Pat may I buy an ‘e’)
My Dove count is definitely starting to shape up. Already featured on the blog are
- Mourning Dove (link here)
- White-Winged Dove (link here)
- White-Tipped Dove (link here)
- Rock Pigeon (link here)
and I have a couple in the works I haven’t had a chance to post yet (think of this as a future episode teaser)
- Eurasian Collard-Dove
- Common Ground-Dove
Today, I am proud to bring you the latest addition to this list,. the Inca Dove.
Hit the jump to read more about this uniquely feathered Dove
Continue reading No Hope
I feel like I’m dragging on my production this month. Then again, that may be more of a fact than a “feeling”. Part of the reason for that is I am literally feeling drained thanks to a new endeavor I recently signed up for. Ever get in a rut with a hobby/pastime where that once enjoyable activity kind of loses a bit of its luster? Maybe it requires a tremendous amount of training just to be able to enjoy that moment in time, but now that training becomes more like work than the once buildup of excitement it brought when you were first starting on that journey. This is where I was starting to get with my running. The long training outings didn’t seem that bad thanks to being able to spend a few hours conversing with my fellow training buddies. Unfortunately, both of my partners in pain are out recovering from injuries making the long runs seem like.. well looong runs. Thought it was time to try something different – maybe get that spark back. Thanks to conversations with some co-workers, went ahead and committed to this “new” experience. I am going to leave the details until after next weekend (when the event occurs) in case it goes horribly wrong. What I can say, after two training sessions, it is much harder than I realized yet everyone that I encounter must be wondering why there is such a big smile on my face behind all that sweat. I can’t wait to see how this new experience turns out – wish me luck!
Looking back, that is one hell of a lead in to simply set the stage that I am sitting here relaxing in my den while relishing the aches in my legs – can’t think of a better time to knock out a post on another new bird on my list. Pop quiz… where did Brian find this feathered specimen…
UPDATE: Turns out I already featured this Warbler from my Georgia trip – apparently forgot to check it off my list: That first encounter is actually here.
I’m just going to go ahead and assume that Texas was bouncing around your cranium long before you got through that sentence. Yes, this is another new check from our birding trip to the Gulf Coast and along the Rio Grande Valley region back in December 2017. More specifically, this Yellow-Throated Warbler was spotted at Sabal Palm Sanctuary on New Year’s Eve. I posted previously on the surreal experience while visiting this sanctuary (link here). Still gives me an uncomfortable feeling when I recall it due to being the ONLY ones there. Definitely worth it though, since two new species made it onto my list – the Ladder-Backed Woodpecker and this much smaller warbler.
Hit the jump to see the only other image that made it into the tin.
Continue reading A Flash of Yellow
Ugh, I’m 6 days into the new month and nothing to show for it on the blog. It has been a bit busy around here at Intrigued as of late and not sure it is going to calm down anytime soon. Case in point, yesterday at 6:15pm local time I was standing at the arrival doors for Punta Gorda airport. It had just poured there and I was taking a few minutes to stretch the legs out from the 2.5 hour or so flight down there from Springfield IL. – where I had driven 1.5 hours before that to make the flight from my hometown. The stretch was important because I was getting into my father’s van so my brother (who had made an earlier flight) and I could drive him back … nonstop. At 1:00pm this afternoon we rolled into Springfield where we unloaded the van and then I made it out to the airport to drive the 1.5 hours back here. All that makes for one tired Bri. No complaints though, always happy to help out my Dad and being in a vehicle for that long you get to re-live some great memories and strengthen the family bond. Thought I would relax a bit before heading to bed early for some badly needed shuteye – I struggle to get any naps in while on the road so the deprivation keeps building throughout the trip. The best way for me to relax is to sit in my den, watch some Cardinals and talk about Team Bird. Although today’s featured bird is more of Yankee fan than a Card.
Hit the Jump to read about this new bird on my list.
Continue reading Flying Zebras