I met Beth while birding along the Texas coast.


She and I crossed paths while birding a couple times, and we had a fantastic discussion along a beautiful pond at Anahuac National Wildlife Refuge before sunset. Marsh birds were calling- Sora, Marsh Wren, Grackles, and Blackbirds added their unique sounds to the chorus and herons streamed overhead. We both shared having bird-loving grandmothers, and shared our experiences. I want to pass along her story as it was special to me to hear about someone else's connection their grandparents.

How did you get started birding? 

My grandmother...  When she was pregnant with my mother. She had a friend who was a birder and she was given a Peterson's guide. My grandmother started looking at birds and feeding birds. 

When she turned 90, I told my sister who had been birding that we were taking Grandma to the Valley (The Rio Grande Valley in south Texas)  and it was probably going to be her last trip. 

We went in February (of 2012) and saw all these great birds. She even got a lifer- a Crimson-collared Grosbeak! We were so happy to get a lifer for her. She was keeping her list while we were out birding. That's when it struck me as a fun/interesting thing to do. I fed birds at my house because it's what you do. My grandmother fed birds, my mom had a bird feeder. It's like an appliance in your house. You have a refrigerator, a washing machine, and a bird feeder.  

She passed away in August that year. Of course i think about her every time I go out birding. I miss her. I feel like I have to keep her legacy going.