Utah County Birders Newsletter
December 2002


Wednesday, December 18

Meet at 7:00 PM in the Bean Museum Auditorium on the BYU Campus.

Our annual December Tradition.

Merrill Webb will talk to us about the Christmas Bird Count. After
which we will be quizzed on our winter bird identification skills in preparation
for the CBC on Dec. 21st.


Wednesday, January 22nd

6:00 pm at the Pizza Factory 2230 N University Parkway, Provo.
We will have a speaker, Be introduced to our new Executive Committee
and Recognize those who participated in the Year 2002 Birding Challenge.
Come in, Eat from the Pasta Buffet, and Chat with friends.
The meal will cost $10 per person.
It’s going to be fun! Don’t miss out.


Saturday, January 11
Meet at 7:00 at the Provo Temple street parking.
Details to follow.

Christmas Lists - Past and Future
by Dennis Shirley

 On the 1st day of Christmas, the hotline gave to me, a full year of fond memories.
   On the 2nd day of Christmas, the hotline gave to me, two collared doves and a full year of Christmas memories.
   On the 3rd day of Christmas, the hotline gave to me, three blue jays, two collared doves, and a full year of Christmas memories.
   On the 4th day of Christmas, the hotline gave to me, four Cassin's vireos, three blue jays, two collared doves, and a full year of Christmas memories.
   On the 5th day of Christmas, the hotline gave to me, five Townsend's warblers, four Cassin's vireos, three blue jays, two collared doves, and a full year of Christmas memories.
   On the 6th day of Christmas, the hotline gave to me, six Rufous hummingbirds, five Townsend's warblers, four Cassin's vireos, three blue jays, two collared doves, and a full year of Christmas memories.
   Etc--you get the idea.

On the 12th Day of Christmas, the hotline gave to me
12 Common Redpolls (Jan. 3rd)
11 Chuckling Chukars (Feb. 5th)
10 Sage Grouse Strutting (Mar. 30th)
9 Painted Redstarts (April 30 - one)
8 Dancing Dunlin (May ll - two)
7 Yellow-billed Cuckoo (June 13 - one)
6 Rufous Hummingbirds (July 4 - one)
5 Townsend's Warbler (Aug. 21 - one)
4 Cassin's Vireo (Sept. 10 - one)
3 Blue Jays (Nov. 1 - one)
2 Collared Doves (Oct. 28)
And a year full of fond memories.
Merry Christmas!

P.S. Santa, All I want for Christmas is these birds in the rest of  2002:
Bohemian Waxwing, Snow Bunting, Lapland Longspur, Red Crossbill, Gray
Partridge, Common Moorhen, Varied Thrush, Golden-crowned Sparrow,
Harris's Sparrow, Glaucous Gull, Eurasian Wigeon. Go find 'em Santas!

Our Photos on www.utahbirds.org
by Margaret T. Sanchez

We can be proud of our excellent web site, and grateful to our Webmaster for the way that he has developed it. But how did the pictures get there?  Time for a little history…
     On Monday afternoon, February 28th in the year 2000, Milton Moody asked if he could see my bird pictures. When he visited my home in Provo, I showed him the three laminated posters of "UTAH BIRDS, 1996" which I had produced as a keepsake of the birds I had seen in that wonderful centennial year when I visited all the counties in Utah. Of course I misidentified a few of the birds, but I had labeled the pictures as well as I could, and there were nearly 200 species. That was a start.
     Then I showed Milton my bird albums, with over 6000 4x6" selected pictures from 1995 to the start of the year 2000. Some of the birds in those pictures were larger than the ones I used on the 1996 posters (though many of them were very small indeed!), and a few of the poses were better. That was the start, for me, of two and a half years of paging through those albums again and again to see if I could find a better picture for Milton to use.
     There were also custom calendars which I had made for my family for Christmas each year from 1995 to 1999. A number of them included 27 species of birds on the page for December, and occasionally I had included bird pictures in other months. Milton took some of those home with him, along with the posters and some separate prints. Neither of us realized at the time that some of the calendars used textured paper that showed up when he scanned the photos into his computer. (He has since rescanned these from the original prints.)
     Milton worked extremely hard for three days getting pictures scanned and enlarged to a usable size, and on Thursday morning returned the pictures to me, along with an official list of Utah Birds. He explained that he would accept a picture of any bird on the list because I was a Utah photographer. It did not matter whether I took the picture in Florida or California,
so long as the bird was one which at some time had officially appeared in this state. (At that point, I began reviewing the pictures I had taken on various trips out of state!)
     On March 11th, I was thrilled to receive my copy of "Utah County Birders" for March 2000. Milton announced that photos of the "Birds of Utah" would soon be on the web site, some 222 species of them, along with maps and identifying details. He invited all readers to submit photos they have taken of any of the Utah birds that are missing from this collection. He even
included in his article some sample pictures from the web site.
     At this time, I was not connected to the Internet, so I first saw my pictures on Milton’s computer. As we went through the various species, he asked where I took each picture. I had given him no data, and I immediately realized that I should do some research in my written records to find out exactly when and where I took each picture that I had on the web. What a daunting task! I did not finish my work until September 17th of this year. By using trip notebooks and my diaries and the chronological
arrangement of the photos in my albums, I was finally able to get the exact information—usually the day and month as well as the year.
     Meanwhile, I reviewed my collection of color slides. From 1976 until 1994, from a 135mm lens to a 600mm lens, and finally a 500mm lens, I considered myself a bird-watcher and a bird photographer. I bought my first pair of binoculars and my first field guide in 1976. From the beginning, my goal was to photograph every species of bird which I saw, and then to take a
better picture than I had taken previously. Through the years, I had some prints (not very good prints) made from the slides, and now I had a few more made. All of my pictures dated before 1995 are from slides. All of the pictures from 1995 on are from color prints.
     Originally, there was only one photo of a bird for each species. Most of these were side views, not very exciting, but chosen to show, as clearly as possible, the key identifying features of the bird, usually a male, preferably in breeding plumage. As time went on, I added pictures of birds standing, swimming, flying, males, females, juveniles, whatever—and Milton
did a superb job as editor, by selecting what he would use, and arranging the pictures in order on the web site. I withdrew a number of pictures that did not satisfy me, and replaced them with better ones. I appreciate Milton’s patience as he updated my information and my photos time and again.
     Eventually, of course, I upgraded my computer so that I could access the Internet, and I have found it pleasant and useful to print out the birds in color. In the meanwhile, something wonderful has happened. Other birders, with better equipment, are submitting pictures of birds that I never photographed, and even some outstanding views of birds already on the web site. The Webmaster has evaluated all of these, and given them an appropriate position, and I myself am glad to see how many persons have been inspired to submit their photos. I feel as though I have made my contribution, and it is time for others to carry on.
     On June 5th, 2000, Tuula Rose showed her video of 130 species of birds— excellent! I can’t begin to keep up with the technology that is being used today —digital cameras, camcorders, computer disks, etc. All I know is that some of you birders are now taking masterful pictures of the birds, and that you have made it easier for Milton to put your photos on the web. More power to you!
     I reviewed "Birds of Utah" in mid-October of this year, and took inventory. The results are as follows:
Species: 330 Total
  264 Margaret T. Sanchez
  66 Additional species by other photographers
  144 Total species by other photographers
Photos: 484 Margaret T. Sanchez
  206 Other photographers
     The 35 other photographers are led by Tuula Rose, with 51 photos on the web site. Some outstanding photographers have contributed from 20-12 pictures: Rick Fridell, James M. McIntyre, Jack Binch, Marvis Collett, Steve Summers, Pomera M. Fronce (whose photos can also be seen on the Red Cliffs web site), and Terry Sadler.
     The opportunity to have a photo used on this web site has drawn a large number of other contributors (27 of them). Three photos from Cal Andrus, Tyler Hendry, Milton Moody, Glenda W. Moore, Richard Schulze, and Steve Walters; two each from Tom Clark, Nicky Davis, Coen Dexter, Friend of Junece Markham, Eric Huish, Kreig M. Rasmussen, and Darren Shirley; one each from Sharon Andrus, Jared F. Barnes, Kristen Comella, Michael Cottam, Daina Graybosch, Larisa Harding, Tyler Hicks, Dwayne Huffaker, National Park Service, Kathy Paulin, Christian Peay, Mark Stackhouse, Charles Sheard,
and Mark M. Stevenson.
     Thanks to all of you for submitting your pictures to the web site. Congratulations for being a part of this outstanding undertaking. And thanks from all of us to our Webmaster, Milton Moody!
Margaret T. Sanchez