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Start Birding Today: Why Should I Go Outside and Stare at Birds? (by Lee Dusing)

Marian (Naturalist at Avon Park Range) and Lee
Marian (Naturalist at Avon Park Range) and Lee 

I almost cracked up when I read the title Stephen gave me for this blog. He gave me the suggested titles and I am suppose to write the articles. Some deal! We would like this series to be informative, but mainly to encourage all of us to “start birdwatching today” no matter our level of experience.

So, why should you go outside? Mainly, because that is where most of the birds are. Yes, there are some in cages in peoples house, but the majority are outside flying freely about waiting for you to come watch them. The birds are busy doing what the Lord designed them to do; singing, building nests, eating, finding food for their young, arguing sometimes (especially those in the Dove-Pigeon family), Why do they argue? They are actually showing dominance or defending their territory, or who knows what else. If you are not outside, you might miss all this. You can watch through your window, so even those who are ill or handicapped, can still get to enjoy the antics of our avian friends.

According to Job, you might even learn something from watching the birds:

But now ask the beasts, and they will teach you; And the birds of the air, and they will tell you; (Job 12:7 NKJV) Who teaches us more than the beasts of the earth, And makes us wiser than the birds of heaven? (Job 35:11 NKJV)

Wood Stork at S. Lake Howard Nature Park
Wood Stork at S. Lake Howard Nature Park 

Stare at the birds? If you do that to a person, they get upset, but I am not sure a bird would, but then again they just might. One of the things I was taught when I first became interested in birding or birdwatching was to have “soft eyes.” If you stare at a tree or a certain area, you might see a bird. If you look at a tree, but not stare, then you can catch movement or activity in that tree that you might miss if you are only staring at one spot.

Are there times to stare? When I am really concentrating on a bird that I have already spotted, then, yes, I will stare as I try to observe details about the bird. But we will save those details for another blog.

Enough for this article. So either slide your chair or wheelchair up to the window, or go outside and stare at the birds, after you find one.

Other Posts in our Start Birding today Series:

  
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