29 December 2008

Top Ten Lifers of 2008: Number 3

The beginning of 2008 seems like an eternity ago but this bird was given to me, literally on my hand, at the Space Coast Birding Festival. I am sure from my banner you already know that I love the Florida Scrub-Jay and that's why it claims nearly-top honors at the Number 3 spot on my 2008 list.

For my number 3 bird we traveled to the Kennedy Space Center complex where an on-going scrub-jay study is being performed. At the festival every year they allow particpants into this restricted area to view the jays and even feed them some peanuts. In return we get to see their color-coded bands up close.

Florida Scrub-Jays are animated, vocal, and a pleasure to behold. Having a lifer bird like this feeding off your hand is a life changing event. If I wasn't in love with this bird already I certainly fell hard when one landed on my hand for the first time and took my offering. I ran out of peanuts quickly on this trip. Luckily for me I met a couple of new friends on this trip, Liz and Jeff, that were willing to share their peanuts with me for a few more up-close and personal views. I really enjoyed all of the Space Coast Festival but this was definitely the most memorable experience of the trip for me.

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