Ever the editor, Zick tries to right a wrong that only "U" (and L) can help with. Photo by Shila Wilson.
Fabulous weekend at Shawnee State Park, where Bill, Shila and I attended the Ohio Ornithological Society's spring conference. Terrific group of people, pretty OK weather, birds popping out everywhere, and amazing flora. 65,000 acres of more or less intact Ohio deciduous forest, emphasis on the oak-hickory complex. I have never heard more cerulean warblers in my life. Bill, who was ably emceeing the event, made a comment during the evening banquet on the unusual abundance of this threatened songbird. "Have you ever seen more cerulean warblers? We're swatting them out of the way. In fact, the meat you're eating tonight is cerulean warbler. They're delicious, too!"
I was so proud of him--he kept the group, 275 strong, laughing out loud as he whipped through the bird checklist and introduced keynote speaker Kenn Kaufmann. He played Hank Williams' Lost Highway, retooled into a brief biography of Kenn. Kenn gave a lyrical keynote about his childhood, an eloquent appreciation of his late mother. Bill and I had the immense pleasure of meeting Kenn's new wife Kimberley, nature interpreter by day, classic rock singer by night. As veterans of the bird festival circuit, we share much in common with Kimberley and Kenn, and we hope they'll grace us with a visit when all this festival stuff calms down later in the summer. We'd dig playing music with them and hanging out in the tower.Kimberley, Bill, Jim McCormac, Zick, and Kenn talk about the tuna sandwiches at our wrapup luncheon.
So begins the festival season, full bore, and they usually don't include Internet access. So there will be hiccups in my and Bill's blogs as we travel Wednesday down into the deep hollers of West Virginia, where cellphones double as doorstops and paperweights. Speaking of faulty technology, I've been trying to post this since 8 AM...let's see--that's twelve hours. Sorry about the glitch--out of my control.