Tuesday, May 30, 2006

ABC Updates

Well, our ABC efforts went fairly well in Chicago this year. In the fine Chicago tradition, we are still counting, and will have a final total in after all of the other locales report their totals. It is entirely possible that we will report a total that is precisely one species higher than every other participating city and county, but that is pure speculation on my part.

Here is an update e-mail that was sent today by the organizer of the competition, Phil Pryde of San Diego:

Greetings again to everyone,
With one more day to go until June arrives on the scene, I'm hopeful everyone has had a very successful ABC/C outing in your local area, and are busily tabulating your sightings. Many thanks to those who have already submitted their results.
As usual, there has been a spirited battle along the California coast for the Birdiest County title. The front-runner at this point, due to excellent organization this year, is Los Angeles County with 265 species. In hot pursuit were San Diego with 261 and Monterey with a preliminary report of 252-253. Under the heading of "don't look behind you, something might be catching up to you", Kern County (inland!) has reported an inland record 246 species. One shudders to think of their total if they had a coastline!
New inland entrants San Antonio and Bexar County had an outstanding first effort at 195 for the city and 205 for the county. No reports yet from the more northernly entrants, who usually do their count a little later in May. Keep those cards and letters coming in! And again, please send me your results, even if they aren't as high as you would have liked; I never post the lower results, but I would like to know the total of how many locales participated. Thanks.
And now the big announcement - I have mentioned in previous e-mails that I was desirous of turning over the national organization of the ABC/C to someone else, preferably an organization, that could perpetuate it, and perhaps increase participation, better than I've been able to do working as an individual.
I'm happy to announce that an enthusiastic offer has been received, and accepted, from the Dauphin Island Bird Sanctuaries folks, last years small coastal city winners. Following the final results for 2006, the official Robe, Scepter, and triangular key to the secret vault at 24 Rue Haxo will be turned over to them. The contact there is Mike Wilson at Ylhammer1@cs.com . They're looking into the possibility of setting up a web site for the ABC/C competition. So things look promising for 2007!
As you submit your results over the next week or so, please note that I'll be away leading a bird trip to Alaska from June 3 through June 11, so there won't be any responses to your e-mails after this Friday, until at least June 12. If you can get your results posted to me no later than June 11, I'll immediately begin determining winners in each of the several categories, and hopefully have final 2006 results sent out by the 15th. That's the goal anyway.

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