“A wise old owl lived in an oak;
The more he saw the less he spoke;
The less he spoke the more he heard...
Why can't we all be like that bird?”
― Edward Hersey Richards




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It's all Happenin' at the "Ritz"...

...in this case, Omni.
I'm sure this'll bore you ...but...just to get this done and over with...with the National American Birding Association Convention behind us, maybe my week ahead will be a bit more quiet. Bud and I attended only one day for the lectures and goings-on. It was interesting. We got a chance to talk to some of the other members of the Audubon Society from our local areas. Found a new way of getting to some of the local society's sanctuaries near home/the coastal bend of Texas. Altho, with the lack of rain in the past few weeks here, we will probably wait and check out the land birds instead. When it's so dry the water birds seem to just fly over; knowing all too well there is no food source. Anyway, the convention was held in a ritzy hotel in the downtown area along the bay water. The Omni Hotel. Ritzy, according to our city council members and local newspaper editors....to me, it is not all that impressive. I've been in much swankier hotels than this and never paid the price for a room like this one charges. There is a special restaurant at the top of the highrise. But at $38 per person for lunch?!! I don't think so!!! I don't know if they had raised prices because of the convention or not, but that seems a bit outlandish to me. With that said, Bud and I learned of a bird that is all too quickly becoming extinct. Altho, it's found in Russia, it was a sad lecture, and I hope the saving of the bird becomes a reality. It has before, maybe this time it will be another success story. The bird is the SPOONBILL SANDPIPER.

The days had convention goers running wild....by that I mean a special bird showed up at the shore's seawall while the convention was being held...believe it or not...right outside the hotel's walls!! But the bird was on the breakwater wall of boulders and quite a distance from the hotel...not seen well with the naked eye...and barely visible with a good set of birding binoculars. I found it ironic that it showed up/showed off this past week and stayed around for some time for the attendees.  And I am finally going to post the  photos I took during the course of one early evening hours when I first read about it on the Texas Bird [ABA] website.  Then, again, the next afternoon it was reported that it returned in front of the hotel and I jumped back in the car while the sun was much higher and better lighting for photo taking.  Still, at over 1/4 mile out from the seawall and on the breakwater, my photos are not as good as if I had a more powerful zoom lens attachment.  I got the best I could.  From the photos I got the 2nd day, it looked to me like a female [mama] and a fledgling...the fledgling looked like a male, but that is just an uneducated guess on my behalf.  And I have it recorded in my bird records that I did indeed see a rare bird!!! On Saturdy, May 3rd, I will have the photos I took posted on my birding photo blog. With all that has been going on, and bird hikes on other days last week, I didn't have time allotted to be on the computer all that much.

Okay, back to the convention.  I picked up all kinds of freebies/handouts.  I bought a pair of silver hummingbird earrings that one member of CCAS [local Audubon society] makes in her spare time.  The reason I couldn't pass them up is simple...the hummers were facing opposite directions.  I can't understand why so many earrings of animals/birds made into earrings have them facing the same direction.  I always admire them, but never buy them 'cause birds facing the same way, to me, is just not rational...call me odd, I don't care. I took breaks often during the time we were there, to walk around. I can't sit for long without gettin' ancy to move around. So, next I'll just show you the interior of the hotel. Some local paintings, photographers, a bar just beyond the lobby, a ballroom that I think is pretty lame!---seriously, shouldn't a ballroom be WOOD floors - instead of being carpeted? To me that's all kinds of wrong. The Nueces room doorway where the birding convention sign-ups were held and bird tracking for the week, etc. A beautiful sculpture of a heron in sliver plating. ---






PS...I've turned off the comments for now [Monday afternoon] so I can catch up with those that visited with me last week. Will post a new post tomorrow and will be back to normal blogging mode by then!!

19 comments :

  1. I really like bird conventions like this - one of the best things is that you don't have to make excuses for being a birder!!

    Nice.

    Cheers - Stewart M - Melbourne

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  2. The hotel and lunch does seem to be expensive.. It is one of the reasons why I do not attend these conventions.. I would rather visit the area when the crowds of people are gone too. Thanks for sharing your experience.. Happy Sunday!

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  3. Did you really get some silver hummingbird earrings for free? If so, I'm taking up birding?! I loved the way the exotic bird, hung around outside waiting for some attention - now did everyone have their camera's with them?
    Sounds like a fun convention :)
    Wren x

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  4. Would you believe that I have hummingbird earrings that also face both ways! A convention would never see me because I'd just be a big fish out of water flopping around, so I admire your adaptability and the event's worthiness.

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  5. Glad you had fun and got to see the rare bird! I think $38 for lunch is way too much, and a carpeted ballroom makes no sense. :)

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  6. It sounds like you had a fantastic convention! I agree with you about the bird earrings facing the same way..I don't understand that either it just doesn't look right to me.
    Have a fantastic Sunday!

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  7. Well---can't tell whether you enjoyed the convention or not... Maybe there were some 'good' things (I'd love those hummer earrings) ---but I'd never be willing to pay the high prices for that hotel and food... I don't like crowds either ---so guess I'll just stick to doing my own thing when it comes to birding...

    Hugs,
    Betsy

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  8. Hi Anni we've missed your interesting posts. Boy was I smiling big time this morning. I was about to clean and put fresh sugar water in the humming bird cafe when Mrs. came flying in for a sip. She was about 4' from me. Our first face to face this season. then I checked on my Bluebird house lo and behold I have 5 itty bitty bluebird eggs in there. Mr. and Mrs have been hanging around a lot so I was suspecting they were building a nest. Mrs. and be picky sometimes about where she lays her eggs. Thank goodness she picked us this year.
    Hugs madi and Mom

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  9. Sounds like an interesting event to attend.

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  10. Well I'm glad you enjoyed the convention. That $38 for lunch is outrageous. I'm betting that it wasn't anything special or any better than something you could cook at home.

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  11. It does sound like a fun time! What is that bird going extinct? It looks more like a sandpiper than a spoonbill.

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  12. A really interesting event, with lots to see and discover.

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  13. Dear Anni, Sounds like you had an interesting time.. Blessings dear. Catherine xo

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  14. Forgive me if you posted the answer already, but, did you see the Booby?! It was in front of the Omni hotel. I was in your neck of the woods yesterday. I'm exhausted but I will be back to read all about your convention experience.

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  15. Ah, looks like there was some nice artwork!

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  16. I hope to go to a convention like that someday. But $38 for lunch? I think not! Sad about the spoonbill sandpiper. I hope their numbers can increase. Anyway, sounds like a wonderful experience at the convention.

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  17. When we were in Orlando they had a comic book convention. It was fun to see all the crazy characters wandering about. In and out of the parks!

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