After a few exciting days at the Rockfish Valley Trail and at the Rockfish Gap Hawk Watch, I thought I would try close to home to see what might be here. Always a chance of seeing a migrating bird such as a Gray-cheeked Thrush or Semipalmated Plover (both species seen here a couple of weeks ago by other birders), or one of the migrating raptors hunting on the open fields or golf fairways. It was a tough go, and I had to try a number of my favorite spots, but I did see 25 species in about 2-1/2 hours. The highlight was my 25th species - a Red-breasted Nuthatch. The Allen Creek Nature Preserve is almost ready for good winter birding - some of the broken boardwalk is being repaired; there is still plenty of vegetation outside of the preserve so that most of the birds were either at the edge of the preserve or elsewhere in Stoney Creek. As the vegetation dies out for the winter, more and more birds will seek food and shelter in the preserve.