How did you get started birding?
I started late-college so I was already into birds when I went into the Army. I went to Afghanistan within four months of arriving into my first unit.
Did you have a chance to bird when you were stationed abroad?
I don't think I brought my bins with me since I packed so much stuff into my duffel bag. I saw Magpies and Laughing Doves. The Laughing Doves were in Iraq. That was really all we had on base. I just got back from Iraq. While we were there I am pretty certain I saw an Egyptian Vulture which was SO COOL! It was this GIANT white bird. I wanted to stop, but we were on the highway and they said no. From that point on, I was bringing my binoculars every place we went.
How did you come to be on Hog Island this week?
While I was in Iraq I donated money to Cornell University and got their magazine, and there was an ad for this camp. I wanted to do something bird-related so badly! I spent some of the money I saved while I was in Iraq and got myself signed up for this. I'm on a month of leave in between moving between duty stations... It's awesome. I'm so happy to be here!