Birders sometimes do an exercise called a “big year,” in which they try to see and identify as many of the different species of birds that can be found in a particular geographic location within a calendar year. The big year can be a contest with other birders, but mostly it involves setting an individual goal and attempting to achieve it. It is not so much about “winning” or even achieving the goal as it is about enjoying the process.
Butterfliers can do big years also, and some have. I am going to do something similar this year. It resembles a big year, but it is not quite the same.
Iowa borders six other states–Missouri, Illinois, Wisconsin, Minnesota, South Dakota, and Nebraska. I am going to try to photograph as many species as I can within Iowa and the surrounding states, with a special emphasis on trying to get photos of species I don’t have yet.
I am not a huge fan of driving. I don’t want to spend all my time on the road. Most areas can be reached within a day’s drive. I would stay a day or two to work the area, then go home. I want to keep the exercise simple enough that I still enjoy it. I also want to find some small town restaurants with fresh pie…