What Makes You A Good Birder?

by Larry on August 19, 2010

What makes you a good birder?  Simply the fact that you enjoy watching birds!  According to Kenn Kaufman, “Birding is something that we do for enjoyment; so if you enjoy it, you’re a good birder. If you enjoy it a lot, you’re a great birder.”

I can’t emphasize this enough.  I think that there are many people in our communities that would love to expand their birding experiences beyond their own backyards, but they are afraid to go out on a group bird walk with “experienced birders.”  Afraid they will look foolish (not likely with a group of folks in wide brimmed hats and binoculars hanging around their necks) due to lack of bird knowledge.  Afraid they might not have the right equipment. Maybe simply afraid of meeting new people.

We as birders need to be bird advocates.  The more bird advocates we have on the planet, the more bird conservation, and as an extension, the more nature conservation we will promote.

I want all my readers to go read Laura Kammermeier’s post on “Who Are The Next “Great” Birders?” over at Birds, Words & Websites.  Laura suggests that we all become ambassadors for birds and she gives us a bullet point list for ways we can achieve this goal.

This is so important if we want to advance our cause and enhance our organizations.  It is also important for the conservation of our environment.

I am one of the lucky ones.  I began birding in my own backyard and joined the local Audubon Society where I found many excellent birders, all willing to share their knowledge and expertise with a “newbie.”  Thrilled for me as much as I was thrilled when I got a new “lifer.”

Now I enjoy having my friends and coworkers ask me questions about birds they see in their yards or out in the wild, and I get just as excited when they see a new bird.

We all enjoy birding and that is what makes us good birders.

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{ 5 comments… read them below or add one }

Eileen August 20, 2010 at 3:02 am

Great post, Larry! I love birding!
.-= Eileen´s last blog ..Wordless Wednesday =-.

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sciencedude288 August 20, 2010 at 7:10 am

Being a newbie, I take great comfort in this post. I would like nothing more than learn more about identifying birds and their natural history. At school, I definitely plan to continue my new passion that I acquirred in Costa Rica.
.-= sciencedude288´s last blog ..7-14-10—63F—70H—Aula Global =-.

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Dawn Fine August 20, 2010 at 4:45 pm

You are a great birder! nice post Larry!
.-= Dawn Fine´s last blog ..Face Plates and Esthers 90th Birthday dinner =-.

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dreamfalcon August 20, 2010 at 11:13 pm

You are absolutely right! I made the experience twice that I met birders who were nothing but grumpy old men, and that leaves you very unsure about what *you* are doing here.
.-= dreamfalcon´s last blog ..Wings on Wednesday – butterflies of Nepal =-.

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Pat O'Donnell August 25, 2010 at 1:56 pm

I totally agree and am so glad to see the “good birding” thing addressed like this. Anyone who likes to watch birds is definitely a good birder and I would go so far as to say that those who promote conservation by sharing birding with others are the “best birders”.
.-= Pat O’Donnell´s last blog ..Oilbirds in Costa Rica =-.

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