Monday, December 24, 2012

Why I Need Your Help

Hi all,

So, as addressed in the previous post, this goal I have set for myself will be hard to accomplish. Though it is only one county, Cook County has a lot of areas that could potentially harbor good birds. This is where I need your help. When the new year comes, I will have a link to my yearlist at the top right corner of my blog. This will be updated every day. If you have seen any birds that I have not seen yet this year, I would appreciate it if you shoot me an email at (I know, a very creative email address). For sensitive species like owls and nightjars, I would appreciate it even more if you tell me where they are as they can be hard to find. I will not post the location if you do not want me to. I will not post that I got the bird if you do not want me to. Again, I would appreciate any help anyone can give me.

On a different note, I have a Flickr account:
Visit if you like :)

Thanks in advance

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Me and My Goal

Hi all,

This post is going to explain my blog and what I am trying to accomplish in this upcoming year, 2013!

Lets start with a formal greeting:
Hello! I am Aaron Gyllenhaal. I love birds. I have been birding since 2nd grade, and now I am a sophomore in high school, which means I have been birding for as long as I can remember. I am a lister, which means I enjoy trying to see as many birds as possible. I can tell you all of my lists off of the top of my head. World-854 USA-600 Illinois-349 Cook County- 290. Birds are my life, and I am not ashamed of it.

Now, about my goal for 2013. For 4-5 years now, I have kept yearlists. In 2012, I have managed to see 312 species only in Illinois, which is pretty good, but it doesn't break any records. I want to narrow my search. So, in 2013, I want to set a new year record for Cook County. The old record was set in 1990 by Eric Walters at 274 species. So naturally, my goal is 275 species. This won't be easy, as Eric's total is very remarkable. I will need both a good migration and rarity year to even come close to this record. This blog will chronicle my journey throughout the year, so join me on my journey for 275 and beyond!