Who I Am


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Originally from the Ohio/Indiana/Michigan area, I have been living in South Central Texas for over 30 years.  My interests in birds and nature started young.  I had bird id flash cards as a child, and there were always bird feeders in the yard.  In college, at Michigan State University, I took a Field Studies in Bird Behavior Course, taught by an auditory birder, and that is when I first started paying attention to identifying birds by their calls.  After college, I spent 5 years as a National Park Service Ranger, working in such diverse habitats as the Colorado Rockies, the Lake Superior shoreline of Michigan, the deserts of California, the plateau lands of New Mexico, the forest and prairies of South Dakota, urban Missouri, the canyon lands of Utah/Arizona, and the Hill Country of Texas.  After landing in Texas, I took a position in a research lab at the UTHSCSA (University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio), and that is where I continue to work today.  I study immunology and aging. 

My birding resume:

  • yearly participation in the San Antonio Audubon Christmas Bird Count and the New Braunfels Christmas Bird Count

  • compiler and organizer for the Canyon Lake Circle Count (a CBC style count held in January)

  • docent and bird surveyor for Bat Conservation International, primarily at the Bracken Bat Cave Preserve (northeast San Antonio area)

  • 17 years as a field biologist for the Endangered Species Project at Camp Bullis, a military reservation outside of San Antonio, studying Golden-cheeked Warblers and Black-capped Vireos

  • several years on the bird survey team for Friedrich Wilderness Park, a city park in San Antonio, Texas

I live north of San Antonio, Texas in Blanco County, on the eastern edge of the Edwards Plateau.  My yard is an acre of native Hill Country vegetation, including a limestone ridge, and overlooks a small lake.  Central Texas has the distinction of lying on the western edge of many eastern species ranges and the eastern edge of many western species ranges.  Most North American birds funnel down (or up) through central Texas during migration, so you never know what might show up.  My current yard bird species list stands at 214 (as of 12/2016). 

I can be contacted by email at leslie@horizontalheavens.com.  No solicitations, please.  Positive comments, questions, corrections (typos or id), and requests to use photographs are welcomed.


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This site was last updated 10/22/17