Today was my first day volunteering at a local bird banding station. This place is great: they have been banding birds for decades, recording population changes and individual measurements, and they care a lot about both the birds and the data.
More importantly, though: I finally got my hands on some birds again.
It’s been a while. I had an abbreviated field season this summer, so I haven’t held a bird since July. Since then I’ve been applying for postdocs and writing my dissertation, both of which involve a lot of sitting inside and staring at a computer screen. I need some bird time. That is, after all, the whole reason why I’m applying for postdocs and writing a dissertation: because I love these guys.