The Veteran Naturalist is Bob Powell, a well-meaning and occasionally amusing old duffer who was tagged “the veteran naturalist” by a former colleague as being more deferential than “stout old birdwatcher.” The VN is more or less retired after a checkered career as a fighter pilot, defense analyst, scientific computing guru, and math professor, a career which afforded opportunities to visit all six inhabited continents. Through all the checkers, the most constant thread of his life has been a love for the natural world. A birdwatcher for almost fifty years, he has accumulated a big bird list and a little knowledge about orinithology and ecology.  Somewhat to his surprise and chagrin, the VN subsided to Wilmington, Ohio, a sedate college town in agricultural southwest Ohio, where he finally has the opportunity to spend a significant amount of time doing natural history, including some genuine field ornithology. The scale is small and the results probably trivial, but the satisfaction is immense.

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