I also made a morning dash to Norfolk to see my friend Sacha, and the Western Sandpiper at Cley (old habits die hard).
On the 29th I flew to Orlando, Florida to join my wife and her parents for New Year, and to end the year with a glut of year ticks. Florida is just amazing for birds - my in-laws have a fairly unremarkable garden but it was covered in White Ibises then a flock of 100+ Brown-headed Cowbirds followed by a flock of about 30 foraging Palm Warblers on my first morning, and a few hours later three Sandhill Cranes strolled across lawn, totally unfussed by my presence. The last bird of the year was a Great Horned Owl in a neighbour's garden at sunset on 31st Dec...it was also a world tick!
|Myrtle Warbler in the garden|
|Chipping Sparrow in the garden|
|Sandhill Crane...in the garden!|
On the way back to Thailand I had a stop over at Newark and so made a fleeting visit to Manhattan, walking from Madison Square gardens to Central Park, scored a few birds in the Ramble and on the lake (best being a female Bufflehead and a very showy Cooper's Hawk), and then headed home. Now the jetlag has mostly gone, and I'm ready for some Asian birding!
|Cooper's Hawk in Central Park|