Typically, I do not consider myself a lister. Some people have a “thing” for lists, and I have a “thing” against them. I find listing to be tedious and pointless. But before your eyeballs fall out of your head, hear me out. I do understand its benefits for some people. Listing gets you out birding, creates friendly competition, helps you understand distribution of birds in a specific area, etc. Totally understandable if that’s your learning style. Admittedly, I do keep some lists. Like most birders, I have a life list and I keep trip/day lists. Once I even tried county listing. But ticking Mountain Chickadee in every south-east Colorado county from Baca to Kiowa lost my interest after awhile. The fact that they move out to the prairie in winter itself was more interesting to me, and I feel fine seeing a bird and taking behavioral notes rather than checking a box.


That being said, just this winter I reached life bird 500. The number had been climbing the past week with Yellow-billed Loon, Tundra Swan, and Snow Bunting. I was crossing my fingers for the number to hold out until my trip to Florida in a few weeks. A life bird is a life bird, although Wood Stork would have been a sweet 500. Wood Stork, by the way, was my first life bird in Florida. Imagine the perplexed looks of other people riding the terminal shuttle when I suddenly cried out, practically jumping out of my seat with surprise, “Oh my gosh, Wood Stork!”  The real number 500 glided lackadaisically overhead during a trip to South Park. Pale with translucent wings— a somewhat disappointing Glaucous-winged Gull. Yes, that’s a great bird for Colorado.


What recent and exciting milestones has your list taken on? I cordially invite you to share. I know you want to…..