Most people who know me – know I am a Lorain County, OH birder. But did you know I actually lived in Cuyahoga County? *gasp* Roughly 2 miles from the Lorain County border. I was closer to Margaret Peak Nature Preserve and Sandy Ridge than I was to any of the Cuyahoga County birding hotspots. I’m not a fan of driving into rush hour traffic (unless I’m doing it to save birds), so whenever I went out birding – I always headed for Lorain County. Well, at the end of October – we began our move to a sweet piece of LoCo Lakefront property. So I am now a legit Lorain County resident!
We got the keys on October 23rd and little by little I started moving everything in myself (mostly because it was a good excuse to scope the lake). With the help of a moving company, we moved the big stuff over on November 10th and have been here full time since then. I’ve been racking up a pretty sweet yard list too! And as I’m typing this – I just picked up my 47th species for the yard! A Great Black-backed Gull!
We must have completed our home inspection on September 17th because I marked some birds at the house before we officially moved in (a Bald Eagle, some Double-crested Cormorants), but the first official bird I marked was a Red-winged Blackbird. Other notables have been White-winged Scoter, Surf Scoter, Black Scoter, Red-necked Grebe, an Evening Grosbeak flyover, Snow Bunting, Common Redpoll, a single Northern Harrier flying out over the lake, and my favorite yard bird so far – A RED PHALAROPE!
There’s a funny story to the Red-necked Grebe too. My favorite LoCo bird friends Josh and Erin Vardous stopped in for a tour of the new house. We scoped the lake for a while, I gave them the tour and then they had to go run some errands. Josh decided to leave his scope at my house. After they left – I decided to scope the lake one more time before I headed over to walk the impoundment. Well it’s a good thing I checked the lake one more time before I left – because I had to call them right back over to look at the Red-necked Grebe! It was far out, so we didn’t get great photos, but still very cool to see!
And as for the Red Phalarope – I kind of give my husband credit for spotting that one. We were both looking out the window at the same time. I kept thinking I was seeing a bird, but also felt like I was just seeing what I wanted to see. Surely it had to be the way the water was hitting the sand. There couldn’t be a Phalarope at the house…or could there?! My husband says – there’s a shorebird out there and I yell “WHERE?!?!” and he pointed exactly to where I was looking. He had a better vantage point where he was standing. And at that point – I didn’t even have an American Robin on my yard list. But I did get that the next day!
I’m looking forward to a day when I can have more friends over scoping from the deck at the new house! Hopefully in the new year!