Local Birder First Canadian To See All Families Of Birds

A local birder accomplished a huge feat in the birding world by setting a Canadian record.

Leamington resident Todd Pepper says he is the first Canadian to see all 234 families of birds in the world.

After retiring as the General Manager at the Essex-Windsor Solid Waste Authority in 2011, he set out, traveling to various countries across the globe to accomplish this goal.

"There are 30 families of birds in the world where there is only one species in the family and they are spread all over the place," Pepper says. "From an island in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, to Papua New Guinea, to Borneo, to New Zealand, Australia, to Central Africa and more."

Pepper says he's happy to finally finish his five-year goal.

"I did some research and no Canadian had ever met the objective of seeing all the families of bird in the world. There was a few Americans and one or two Europeans who had done it, and completed it. So I thought this is within my objective, this is within my budget and interest."

Pepper says he saw the last two of the 234 families back in June of this year, in the mountains of Myanmar and the Tibetan Plateau of China.

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