Susan Evanoff, August 2019 eBirder of the Month

By Team eBird September 15, 2019

Susan (middle) birding with friends in Ohio

Please join us in congratulating Susan Evanoff of Massillon, Ohio, winner of the August 2019 eBird Challenge, sponsored by Carl Zeiss Sports Optics. Susan’s name was drawn randomly from 1,815 eBirders who submitted at least 20 eligible eBird checklists from one eBird location in August. Susan will receive a new ZEISS Conquest HD 8×42 binocular for her eBirding efforts. Here’s Susan birding story:

I was introduced to backyard birding by my late father at a very young age. But I never really became an avid birder until my mid-40s and it soon became a passion. Birding has given me the opportunity to meet so many new friends and travel to many great places. And, especially since my retirement – it’s been a fun ride so far!!

Willet by Susan Evanoff/Macaulay Library

I purchased my first pair of bins in Vermont on a skiing trip in 1993 and the rest is history.
My first experience birding was with The Wilderness Center Bird Club (Wilmot, OH) in 1993. Shortly thereafter, I joined the group and quickly became newsletter editor and have been President for over 10 years. I was appointed to the Ohio Ornithological Society board of directors in 2011, serving as Director-at-Large, East Central Regional Director and currently hold the position of Executive Secretary and Chairman of the OOS Ohio Young Birder Education Committee. All of it gives me a chance to share my passion and give back to the birding community which has given me so much!

Initially, I started eBirding to tally my county, year and life lists since I found it a great way to keep track. Since then I have added historical records from trips across the country and Europe to bring my lists up-to-date. Since I bird at least 2 days a week, (usually with my best birding friend, Su), and check my feeders daily, I’ve been submitting at least one list a day, usually from my Android smartphone, for the entire year so far. I had originally thought it would be difficult to post to eBird, but now I would not think of birding without posting the list of birds seen on each outing.

The most fun eBirding was this past June when we were to add breeding codes. I had not paid as much attention previously to how many immatures were coming to my feeders.

Golden-cheeked Warbler by Susan Evanoff/Macaulay Library

Birding enhances my life so much and I’m so excited to receive new optics! I’d like to thank Carl Zeiss Sports Optics for the generous gift of Zeiss binoculars and thank you Cornell Lab of Ornithology for eBird.