Re: San Diego County Big Year 2020

Alison Hiers

Congratulations Nancy!!  Thanks as always for your help in the field.  And Congrats to you too Mel and Barbara Wise, and Alison Davies and Dan Jehl and the others who were out diligently birding and helping the rest of us along the way.  Hopefully we'll cross paths in 2021 and see some wonderful birds together.

Alison Hiers

On Dec 31, 2020, at 8:57 AM, Mel Senac <msenac@...> wrote:

On behalf of my fellow San Diego birders,  I want to congratulate Nancy Christensen on her S.D. County Big Year. Nancy had an incredible 393 “clean, countable”  species for the year and if you throw in a few of our common “non-countable’s” such as Red-masked Parakeet, Lilac-crowned Parrot , Black-throated Magpie-Jay etc. she had 399. This broke the longstanding record of 388 held by Barbara Carlson for many years.
This is an amazing number when you consider 2020  was the year of Covid-19 and lockdowns. Furthermore, Nancy was President of San Diego Field Ornithologist and put in hours of time. Along the way she was dealing with a bad back and her Father’s failing health. Despite her quest, she was always the first person to get someone on a bird who had just arrived,  was struggling to get on the bird  or giving precise directions on how to find a specific bird through the list serv or via her phone. She is far too humble to admit any of this. 
I can attest, as her birding pal, that Nancy did not set out to do a Big Year. Not in this crazy 2020. It was not until October when her husband Russ and myself independently told her that her numbers were on a record-breaking pace.  She finally took notice. Then through hard work, perseverance and San Diego County being blessed with many good birds she was able to accomplish this remarkable achievement. I know I speak for several birders in San Diego and Southern California - well done Nancy!
Mel Senac 
San Diego

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