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All Birders are Backyard Birders
Wednesday October 10, 2018   |
Whether in the field or in your southern Texas yard, a Green Jay is a welcome sighting and photo subject.
Allen’s Hummingbirds are increasing their population sizes and range in southern California – in the field and in many people’s yards.
In some mountainous areas of the West, Band-tailed Pigeons are part of the avifauna of lower mountain slopes and periodic yard visitors.

An urban myth seems to persist that suggests birders are divided into two groups – birders and backyard birders. Please permit me to dispel that illusion: All Birders are Backyard Birders. I don’t know of any birders who are not backyard birders. Conversely, yes, there are some backyard birders who may not actively go into the field, but they still keep lists of the birds they see using binoculars in their yard and neighborhood, they report the rare birds they see, they take photographs of the birds in their yard, and they chronicle the seasonal changes in the birds they observe. The real factor of what kind of birder you are may be more a matter of geography than anything else: Like birds, some birders have small territories, while some of us have expansive home ranges.

Peter and I make sure that within each issue of The Birding Wire we provide a wealth of information to inspire everyone to expand their birding interests and activities. We start most issues with a Backyard Birding article, then follow up with a variety of ways for anyone new to birding, seasoned birders and advanced birders to add another aspect to their birding fun.

Each week, we offer articles under the headings of Optics, Photography, Conservation, Rare Birds, Gear & Products, Birding News and Birding Lifestyles. These are all important aspects of birding – including Backyard Birding. Travel is also a big part of the articles we share – across town, cross-country, and internationally. Peter and I also share our interests in the field and in our yards each week, providing examples of what’s happening east and west, north and south through the seasons in Editor’s Afield.

That’s what’s great about birding; there are so many different ways to appreciate and enjoy birds, and you can combine birding with other recreation such as hiking, cycling, canoeing and kayaking, landscaping and travel of all kinds. You can share your birding interests with your family and friends, join organized field trips and attend birding festivals, and sit back and see what birds show up tomorrow at your feeding station and water feature. Plus you can extend backyard aspects of birding to your workplace or school.

Yes, backyard birding is an important part of birding, but it’s not a closed door. We are all backyard birders and it’s just a matter of personal preference as to how we extend our birding activities beyond our home. What can you do to enjoy or expand your birding endeavors in more ways?

Article by Paul Konrad

Share your birding experiences at editorstbw2@gmail.com


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