News and Odds and Ends

So, I stumbled upon a really interesting blog called Pete at Midway, written by a man spending six months on Midway Atoll in the Pacific Ocean--who knew they had Internet access there? Anyway, he's got some great shots of the birds around there including albatross, fairy terns (also known as white terns), and tropic birds. He started his blog June 9 and you can easily catch up on his adventures. I love this photo of his front yard covered with albatross in his first entry.

In other news, I can finally get my favorite beer that I've had at birding festivals in the Twin Cities: Fat Tire! Whoot!! It's the best, and quite possibly could be the official birder beer. If you live in the Twin Cities and you have never had it, I highly recommend picking one up.

I got a press release today for the Midwest Birding Symposium that's happening September 13-16, 2007 to be held once again in the Quad Cities. The MBS happens every other year, so the last one was in 2005. It's held in an area twice, so this is the Quad Cities second go at it:

"We hope you enjoyed your time in 2005, and we have a whole new experience to share in 2007!

Highlights for 2007:
New venue - Stoney Creek Inn & Conference Center, Moline, IL. The hotel is a northwoods experience on the Mississippi River!
Keynote speaker: Kenn Kaufman
Expanded field trips
Earlier dates for migrating species.

Join us for a great time, free reception, and reconnect with the friends you made in 2005."

I went to the MBS in 2005 and had some fun, I'm not sure if I'm going to go again this year. It's good to see that they listened to feedback from last time and changed when they are having the festival and labeling which trips are boat trips. Although, I did notice that they are still promoting one trip by saying, "Participants may also see the Eurasian tree sparrow." I signed up for that trip last time just for the sparrow and when I was boarding the vehicle, I asked the guides where we were going to see one. They shook there heads and said, "There are no Eurasion tree sparrows where we're going." Hm, I wonder if they will be there this time?