Wish you all were closer! I’m 68 and a complete newbie. I started a few days ago after seeing THE BIG YEAR and the purchase of a few field guides (Peterson’s, Sibleys, and National Geographic). I was reading the Peterson’s in the waiting room in the pharmacy at Kaiser and then walked across the street to a park with a pond. It was a bust! I heard the singing and as I approached the tree I heard the silence.Ultimately I had to sit down and just wait. In 2 hours I saw 2 birds, neither of which I could identify. I found you all through web surfing and was reading your report of Morongo. 58 birds? Curacao!! I’m thinking it takes a lot of training for birding! AND…you could name them! Two days later I purchased an inexpensive set if binoculars (Vortex Viper 8×42) and they were amazingly better than my 58 year old 7×50′ s. I have one of those homestead cabins in Yucca Valley and NEVER saw that many birds. Tell your members that I was stunned (flabbergasted?) by your count and I stand with my hat off in respect!