Q. How long have you been birding?
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Q. What got you interested in birding?

Introducing our February 2004
Birders of the Month:

Bob & Donna Germany
of Tulsa, OK
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Q.  What are your 3 favorite birds? and is/are there any particular reason(s) they're your favorites??
Q.  Tell us about your BEST birding experience.... so far.
Q.  What was your WORST??
Q.  What are you most likely to say when a bird flies before you can ID it??
Q.  What was the last book you read?
Donna:  Since Spring 1999.
Bob:  I've done some casual birding since about 1964 but began seriously birding in the Spring of 1999, after my retirement.
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Donna:  On a 1999 trip to Big Bend National Park, I took a basic birding class and was hooked.  Nyla Woody introduced me to Tulsa Audubon's Tuesday Morning Birders later that Spring.
Bob:  I've had an interest in birds since age 9.  My 35-year-career with the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service kept that interest alive.  I also credit Aline Romero for encouraging me to join the TAS Tuesday Morning Birders group.
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Donna:  Black Mesa.  There are birds found there that occur nowhere else in the State.
Bob:  Black Mesa for me, too.
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DonnaNational Geographic 3rd is my choice for daily use, but the Sibley Guide is my favorite for keying out a difficult bird.
BobNational Geographic 3rd is the one I carry when birding.  For difficult birds, I pull out the other five or six guides I've acquired over the years.
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Donna:  I love the elegance of the Canvasback and the beauty of the American Kestrel.  I especially love the Black-tailed Gnatcatcher because it's the first bird I identified on my own.
Bob:  I have always had special affection for waterfowl and the Wood Duck in particular.  I like the Anhinga, "snake bird" of the swamps.  And I'm impressed by the beauty and tail-fanning behavior of the Painted Redstart.
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Donna:  My best birding experience so far was a mini-fallout at Lafitte's Cove near Galveston, TX.  Birds (lifers!) were just falling out of the sky into the trees.  It was great!
Bob:  The best one I recall was on a birding tour at Bentsen-Rio Grand State Park near Mission, TX.  A group of warblers was traveling the woods together and I saw two lifer warblers in one tree: a Black-throated Gray and a Black-throated Green.  The fallout Donna described at Lafitte's Cove was really good, too.
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Donna:  I don't think I have had a bad birding experience yet.
Bob:  My worst experience is really not a bad one.  We were at Patagonia State Park in Arizona several years ago and decided to look for the Elegant Trogon.  We hiked several miles to a location in the park where the bird had been seen the day before, but no Trogon.  The reason it wasn't so bad is all the great birds we saw on the hike.
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Donna:  I probably shouldn't tell what I say when a bird gets away before I can ID it.
Bob:  I usually say, "Come back here, coward!"
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Donna:  I really enjoyed Seabiscuit by Laura Hillenbrand.
BobLiving on the Wind: Across the Hemisphere with Migratory Birds, by Scott Wiedensaul.  I recommend this book for all bird lovers.
Q.  Who are your heroes or role models?  Whom do you admire? and if you care to comment, why are they your heroes?
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Donna:  I have too many heroes to name just one or even a few.  However, I have great admiration for anyone who stands up for his principles, regardless of the criticism he may take because of his position.
Bob:  To me, the real heroes are those who sacrifice their time, resources, and talents for the good of other people who may be less fortunate.  I think Mother Theresa impressed me that way.
Q. What's your favorite birding spot in Oklahoma?
Q. What field guide do you prefer to use?
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