Malkolm is cycling on! He is now cycling from Alaska to Washington DC, and then continuing on to the UN Climate Change conference in Cancun in December.
It all started with Bird Year, Malkolm and his parents' year-long, fossil-fuel-free journey in search of birds. Cycling a total of 13,133 miles (21,144 km), they identified 548 different bird species and raised more than $25,000 for bird conservation. Bird Year turned them into confirmed cyclists and taught them that climate change was more serious than they had thought.
In 2009, Malkolm biked from Whitehorse to Ottawa as a part of Pedal for the Planet: the project called for the Canadian Government to become a leader in the struggle to come to grips with climate change. The Harper Government did not even meet with the young cyclists.
Malkolm is now 18 and just finished high school. On August 24, he dipped his foot in the Pacific Ocean in Skagway, Alaska. Then headed up and over the White Pass to the Alaska Highway on his journey to Washington and on to Cancun.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Orange-headed Warbler (Malkolm)

I dismounted from my bike. Nearly a vertical mile below lay the Sonoran Desert, and our campsite in the foothills of the Chiricahuas. We had cycled up an arduous twelve mile dirt road, high into the mountains, in search of Olive Warblers. The going was incredibly slow – it took us three hours of bumpy slogging to reach the top.

I scanned the pines for any sign of movement. “There’s something,” said Ken, pointing. Something small flitted high in the tallest tree, but it always had a bunch of needles screening it from view. I craned my neck. My neck screamed in protest. “It must be a warbler, because I’m getting warbler neck.” Moments later it flew onto an open branch, flashing its orange head.

“YES!” all three of us shouted together. The Olive Warbler paused for another few moments, long enough for us to admire its contrasting black cheek and its subtle gray plumage. It was our 353rd species, well beyond my dream goal of 350 before leaving Arizona.

It fluttered to a lower branch, its orange head glowing in the sunlight. I let go of my binoculars and raised the camera. It even cooperated enough to open its mouth for the camera. “It is orange, not olive,” commented Wendy. “The ornithologist who discovered it must have worn dirty glasses.”


Suzanne said...

How lovely to see such a beautiful bird on this cool morning. I so appreciate you sharing your journey so that many of us can enjoy it vicariously.

Matthew said...

Glad you got the Olive Warbler! Great photo, by the way.

Zoƫ said...

Go Malkolm!!
Congratulations on the Mexican Chickadee, Olive Warbler, and Whiskered Screetch-Owl - plus hitting 354 in Arizona!!

Kirst said...

that olive warbler is one cute bird. it looks like it has an over-processed blonde dye job.
ps. what is 'warbler neck' like? is it anything like 'rock neck', which I used to get after too much headbanging at concerts? love, kirst

Piper said...

great shot M. keep it up.

AKA, kq