Year of the Black-billed Magpie!!!
The first* (and second) positively identified bird of the New Year for me was a Black-billed Magpie (Pica hudsonia), spotted alongside Hwy 160 on the way to Wolf Creek ski area. And that was the first time, to my conscious memory, to see them!
This was not the first sighting. This shot was taken on the homeward trip just outside of Pagosa Springs, CO off of U.S. Hwy 160, 3 January 2010 © Roman
Maybe it is a sign that 2010 will be for me a year of self recognition and personal reflection? Or perhaps it will be a year of clever caching and scatter-hoarding? Actually, the hoarding part would not be a new phenomenon for me, as I have mentioned, but it would be good to follow the Magpie’s example of short-term hoarding. Or maybe it will be a year of omnivorous scavenging on carrion along the highway, since that is what I saw Magpies doing best.
*Technically, the first birds of 2010 might have been some Sparrows; I heard them, but I did not quite see them clearly.