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Hobbies: Bird Watching

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bullfinch
bullfinch

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Written by  Staff Writer
Saturday, 05 August 2017 01:55

Some people that have never bird watched has stigmatised it as a “loony” pastime. There is certainly a bit of stigma attached to bird watching. Those who have never tried it have liked to train spotting, or some other similar type pastime.

Nothing could be further from the truth.

Bird watching, or birding, as its known by these that love it, it is one of the cheapest, most relaxing and rewarding pastimes there is. I recommend that you try it, you may find that it will become your favourite past time.
It is a past time that can be as expensive, or as inexpensive as you want it to be. You can watch birds with the naked eye. You don’t even need to know what type of bird you are watching. It is enjoyable enough just to watch their behaviour especially when the males are preening themselves during the mating season.

Once you hooked, the next step is to get yourself a pair of inexpensive binoculars, but if you are in for the long haul, then investing in a good set of binoculars, a spotting scope and a camera, and various tripods is the way to go.

Bird watching can be a hobby on many different levels.

  • There are casual observers, who just like to watch the birds, there are birders who have learned enough to name most of the birds they see, there are twitchers so called because they positively twitch with anticipation as they race from one end of the country to another to see the one-off ‘migrant’ species that have landed in a country completely foreign to them, and then there is the ornithologist, who studies migrations, breeding patterns, numbers etc.

  • Then there are ‘ Lister’s’. They make lists of the birds they see, where and when, weather conditions etc.

With the advent of the Internet there are many bird watching related websites that help you identify the varieties that you see. Twitter and Facebook has virtual communities of like-minded individuals. A lot of bird watchers write regular blogs on their activities and sightings, allowing others to share the experience and visit your area. There are various apps that help you list and identify birds in the field, and it is a good idea to take at least your iPhone, or iPad.

Bookshops have Bird watching guides for every occasion and location and every town and city has a bird watchers club of some form or another. They are usually very cheap to join, have members ranging from beginner to expert and arrange trips out to bird watching sites. They are probably the greatest place to learn the hobby and the birds that you watch.

You can take up bird watching at any age. It is a great way to de-stress after a hard week’s work; it gets you out in the fresh air, and can be shared by all the family.

You don’t need to travel that far to watch birds. They are in the town, the city and your back garden.

Final Word

Give it a try, get out and have a look around. You will enjoy it and get some exercise and fresh air into the bargain. You never know, you may just become and addict!

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