Wednesday, January 25, 2012

The Big Year out on DVD January 31st

Were you a fan of The Big Year starring Steve Martin, Owen Wilson and Jack Black? I know many of my birding friends were originally fans of the book and had mixed reviews about the transition to the big screen (and how the story and characters changed), but in general I think it was positively received. Birdwatching and competitive birding doesn't get much mainstream coverage so I think birders were just happy to see our story being told in a major studio release with big stars. I personally thought it was a great movie, yes some parts were a little unrealistic, but I'm a big fan of all the actors involved and it was just fun to see a movie in the theatre ALL ABOUT BIRDING :)

The Blu-ray combo pack will be $29.99 and DVD single-disc will be $19.99. Not a bad deal! I don't have a Blu-ray player but will be getting the DVD to add to my movie collection. I'd definitely like to watch it again- especially after reading the book (one of the things on my To-Do list).

Just for fun- here's a "What Bird Are You?" quiz courtesy of Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment as part of their DVD release promotion.

Bird Buddies- Comedic Icons Steve Martin, Jack Black and Owen Wilson Star in the Hilarious Outdoor Adventure Coming to Blu-ray and DVD January 31!

Brad (Jack Black) tells his father that he can relate to a certain bird species because both he and the bird are both generally underestimated. Here, after taking this quiz, you'll be able to see what kind of bird you might most closely resemble. Are you an avid decorator like the bowerbird? Do you like to show off your dance moves to impress the ladies like a riflebird? You'll know for sure what bird best suits your personality after taking our test!

Steve Martin, Jack Black and Owen Wilson portray three men from very different walks of life, facing a mid-life crisis, a work-life crisis and a no-life crisis. In the biggest competition of their lives, they undertake an unforgettable trek through North America, engaging in hilarious and bizarre adventures and forming friendships that will last a lifetime!

What Bird Are You


1. If you could travel anywhere in the world, where would you go?

a) Australia, for sure!
b) I’ve always wanted to explore a tropical rainforest!
c) I don’t like to travel; I’d rather just stay home.
d) I can’t choose just one place! I want to travel everywhere!

2. How do you attract a member of the opposite sex?

a) I give make them something unique, or give them a memorable present.
b) I woo the opposite sex with my sweet dance moves!
c) I show them that I will be committed and protective of them in the future.
d) I treat them as my equal and try to find an activity we can share with one another.

3. What is your favorite color?

a) Anything bright and flashy!
b) Blue
c) Yellow
d) Brown

4. What is your hidden talent?

a) I’m really crafty; I can make cool things from common objects.
b) I’m a great dancer!
c) I’ve been told I have an interesting singing voice!
d) I’m super resilient – I can do a lot on little sleep and with few or no breaks.

5. How would you describe your personality?

a) I’m really complex, so I can’t succinctly describe my personality.
b) I’m outgoing and independent – the life of the party!
c) I’m a homebody, but I’m fun to be around and really protective of the things and people I love.
d) I have tons of friends and live a sort of jet set lifestyle – I’m definitely a world traveler.

Mostly A’s

You are most like a bowerbird! Bowerbirds are renowned for their unique (and crafty!) courtship behavior. Males will build structures (called bowers) out of sticks and brightly colored objects in an attempt to attract a mate. Bowerbirds are also extremely good at mimicking other creatures, including pigs, waterfalls, and human chatter. This complex behavior has led many to believe that bowerbirds are the most behaviorally complex species of bird. Bowerbirds are mainly found in varying parts of Australia.

Mostly B’s

You’re a riflebird! Male riflebirds are polygamous and known for their flashy mating “dance.” During this courtship display, the male will fully extend his wings, raise his tail and hop upward while swinging his head (allowing him to show off his blue-green breast shield). Female riflebirds observe this “dance” and, if satisfied, will reward the male by mating with him. The females then take care of their young without male assistance. These birds are mainly found in the rainforests of New Guinea and Northeastern Australia.

Mostly C’s

You are a blue tit! One thing that blue tits are known for is being “resident” birds, meaning that they do not migrate. Blue tits are very popular garden birds in Europe due to their perky acrobatic performances and interesting calls when feeding. Blue tits are also very protective of their nests and eggs, and exhibit a lot of excited behavior when feeding and nesting. Blue tits will also nest in any suitable hole, including artificial nesting boxes (most birds will not readily settle in an artificial nesting box).

Mostly D’s

You’re most like a bar-tailed godwit! The bar-tailed godwit migrates in flocks to places like East Asia, Alaska, New Zealand, Australia, Africa and northwestern Europe. Bar-tailed godwits take the longest non-stop flight of any bird species, traveling from New Zealand to the Yellow Sea in China! These birds also share the responsibility of incubating and caring for their young between both the males and the females.

What bird were you? I'm a Godwit apparently! :-)

If you're interested in keeping up on info about The Big Year and other 20th Century Fox releases follow them on Twitter: @FoxHomeEnt/.

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Osprey drops in to my Cape Cod Wedding!

The majority of 2011 was spent planning my wedding, but now that it's over I'm finally catching up things I've my blog! I still squeeze in birdwatching when I can (today I had pine siskins, black-capped chickadees and white-breasted nuthatches at my bird feeder, plus saw a golden-crowned kinglet while on a walk at Carver Pond), but sadly I haven't had the time to sit down and blog regularly. That's going to change in 2012. I've really missed going birding and now I have considerably more time on my hands. I also changed jobs around the time of my wedding, and instead of commuting 2 hours into Boston I now drive 30 minutes to Plymouth. I found an amazing job at SmartPak Equine, a horse supplement and equestrian supply company.

Now that the holidays are over I finally have time to go through all my wedding photos. I've been working putting together a book for us, one for my parents and one for Steve's parents. Hopefully
that will be done soon!

While looking through all the photos I keep noticing all the bird ones. We got married at the Lighthouse Inn in West Dennis, MA (on Cape Cod). It's located right on the ocean, so naturally there were lots of shorebirds, gulls, and even an osprey made an appearance. My wedding photographer Lindsey Light was amazing. She and her assistant Mike were very accommodating and when I told her I was a birder and I would love if she snapped some photos of the birds she willingly obliged. In fact- in some of these pictures it wasn't even intentional! The osprey was fishing in the breakwater while we were getting photos taken on the narrow dock. It was hard to concentrate on photos when the osprey was right next to us diving into the water for fish. Here are the photos- enjoy!

Herring Gull

At first I was doubtful this was the Osprey in this photo, but after checking my Hawks at a Distance book I'm reminded that the Osprey has a distinct "M" shape in the sky at a distance.

Herring Gull in the background

Osprey flying in low hunting for fish

All photo credit in this post goes to our amazing wedding photographer Lindsey Light. If you're getting married soon, or looking for portrait photos in general (she does engagement photos, as well as baby and family pictures) definitely check her out.