And that is a far superior stat in beach walking than in baseball. Dennis found his 200th dead bird, a ring-billed gull rolling in the surf, yesterday on his Provincetown, Massachusetts beach on Cape Cod. Dennis tends to find more carcasses than the average Seanetter, helped along by the prevailing winds that tend to push carcasses and general debris up onto the shores of the west facing Cape. Seanetters who find few or no carcasses should not despair, for we value negative reports equally with positive reports. Our purpose is to generate as many walks as possible, not as many birds as possible. Still, ’tis the nature of humans to observe such a momentous event as this 200th body.
Dennis’ bird is instructive for another reason; on a walk on the same beach three days earlier, this gull had not been present. In the intervening days, it appeared, and got its head eaten off. This is a demonstration of how fleeting carcasses are, and how valuable frequent walks are if we want a detailed sense of what goes on out there.
If you are able, consider upping the frequency of your walks. Or, consider recruiting a friend to walk the beach on your off weeks. Our database will thank you!