The Great Blue Blog
December 27, 2013

Where Did The Today Show Snowy Owl Go?

Following the Trail of a Satellite-Tracked Snowy Owl

Norm Smith releasing a Snowy Owl on The Today Show

The Today Show recently featured a story about the controversial decision by the Port Authority of NY & NJ to shoot 3 Snowy Owls at JFK Airport ... The Today Show story showed Norm holding a Snowy Owl from Logan while talking to a group of onlookers, and at the end of his talk, Norm releases the owl back to the wild. ... What wasn't mentioned in the news story was that the Snowy Owl that Norm released was fitted with a satellite transmitter that would report the owl's daily location. Continue reading...

December 23, 2013

Countdown to The Biggest Year?

Countdown Timer for Neil Hayward's Accidental Big Year

Neil Hayward is attempting to set the record for seeing or hearing as many different bird species in the American Birding Association's "ABA Checklist Area" in a single calendar year. Birders refer to this as an ABA Area Big Year. "The Big Year," starring Jack Black, Steve Martin and Owen Wilson, depicts birders competing to set the ABA Area Big Year record. Continue reading...

December 11, 2012

"Not Too Shabby!"

Peterson Falcons Fundraiser

The Indiegogo fundraiser to help get Roger Tory Peterson's falcons painting displayed at the Peterson Refuge in Old Lyme, Connecticut finished up at midnight PST last night. $2,408 was raised! Not too shabby considering some of the obstacles that needed to be contended with! Continue reading...

December 9, 2012

"Birds cannot speak for themselves. I must speak for them."

Peterson Gravestones in Duck River Cemetery in Old Lyme, CT

Roger Tory Peterson's and Virginia Marie Petersons's gravestones are in the northeast corner of Duck River Cemetery in Old Lyme, Connecticut. Roger's gravestone features a relief sculpture of a pair of Northern Flickers based on one of his paintings. Roger's passion for birds was sparked by an encounter with a flicker when he was 11 years old.

The back of his gravestone has the following quote: "Birds cannot speak for themselves. I must speak for them." Continue reading...

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November 12, 2012

Indiegogo Crowd Fundraiser: Peterson's Falcons

Peterson's Falcons Fundraiser

Help me raise money to help get Roger Tory Peterson's Falcons field guide painting displayed at the Roger Tory Peterson Refuge in Old Lyme, Connecticut. Continue reading...

Virtual Park Tour: Roger Tory Peterson Refuge, Old Lyme, CT

A Small Brook in the Peterson Refuge

The 56 acres of mostly undeveloped land that makes up the Roger Tory Peterson Refuge in Old Lyme, Connecticut were just acquired by the Fish & Wildlife Service in late 2011 from The Nature Conservancy. The land was originally owned by Roger Tory Peterson and is adjacent to where his studio and house were. Peterson lived here from 1954 until his death in 1996. The Peterson Refuge is part of the Silvio O. Conte National Fish and Wildlife Refuge. The planning for the refuge is still in the embryonic stages Continue reading...

November 6, 2012

Americans Voting: What Could Be More American?

Americans Voting

Here's a gallery of photos I mostly took today, Election Day, November 6, 2012. Getting to your polling place (especially if they've changed it on you) and voting on Election Day is very American! Continue reading...

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October 25, 2012

"Magic of the Snowy Owl" Quick Questions & Answers

Still from PBS's "Magic of the Snowy Owl

PBS's Nature premiered "Magic of the Snowy Owl" last night at 9pm EDT. It was a very interesting look at a pair of Snowy Owls raising 5 owlets in the Arctic tundra. Michael Male, of Blue Earth Films (, was director of photography for the documentary. Michael told me via email that this meant that he and an assistant worked 7 days a week for 2 months to record the activities of the owls and owlets during the brief Arctic breeding season. Continue reading...

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October 20, 2012

What Could Be More American Than Apple Pie?

Baseball, Basketball, and Birds at A. W. Stanley Park in New Britain, Connecticut

Inspired by a comment on Facebook that suggested "apple pie" was an answer to my previous blog post's title, "Baseball, Basketball and Birds: What Could Be More American?", I decided to buy an apple pie from the Big Y in Old Lyme and photograph the unboxing and consumption :) . Continue reading...

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October 11, 2012

Baseball, Basketball & Birds: What Could Be More American?

Fall Foliage around the Lower Pond of A. W. Stanley Park in New Britain, Connecticut

The Friends of A.W. Stanley Park were reactivated earlier this month and thought October 11th would be more significant than it turned out to be. It was a huge relief when rumors we had heard turned out to be unfounded. Rather than having to fight against uninformed folks who thought undeveloped parts of our park would be better if they were developed, we found out that our park was still safe. In celebration, I went out with my camera and enjoyed the park in ways it has been enjoyed for many years. Here's some of what I shot and thought while shooting. Continue reading...

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May 26-June 1, 2012

Delaware Bay Shorebirds, Cape May, NJ

Shorebrids on Delaware Bay, Cape May, NJ

I spent last week with the Delaware Bay Shorebird Project Team and the shorebirds in Cape May, NJ. I shot quite a bit of shorebird video and took some panoramic images of 2 separate shorebird banding sessions. I've included a shorebird video and 2 panoramic team images below. Continue reading...

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