Birding or birdwatching is the recreational observation of bird species in the wilderness. If you want to know how to become a birder, the following can help your budding interests.
Know your species
There’s a multitude of birds out there, every feather differentiating one from another. Before you venture into the wilderness, know what kind of species are limited to specific areas and research online on how to differentiate one bird from another.
Is your bird resident or migratory?
Mark down the regions in the locality that are home to the resident birds and collect information about the kinds of residing species. The migratory birds only visit places in certain seasons and times of the year, learn about the birds of summer and winter seasons online or from local guides.
Things you need
Birds may take ages to spot, so get a tent and a reasonable amount of beverages and refreshments with you. Birds are shy up-close and are hard to encounter, try to get your hands on a good pair of binoculars and a high resolution camera that can help you spot, identify and observe the birds.
Spotting the birds
Birds are good at concealing themselves in foreign presence and it may not be a piece of cake spotting them. Learn about the specific spots or the kinds of places that your species of interest like to eat, rest, hide and live in. It’s referred to as bird “watching” but hearing plays a very important role in spotting the birds as it is the acknowledgement of their presence.
In order to successfully observe the natural bird behavior, make sure you’re not inflicting any change in the natural order of their surroundings. Birds are very sensitive to their environment and their behavior is greatly affected by minute changes. If your presence threatens them in any way, they may show unnatural behavior or consequently flee and hide.
Try not to dress up very conspicuously; making sure your clothing conceals your presence. Wear colors and patterns that blend with the surrounding, earthy tones and rocky or streaky patterns are often good choices. Boldness in your appearance may appear as a threat to the birds.
Pen it down
Keep a journal that helps you note down your observations and keep a record of your finds.
Birding is a recreational activity and it should, in no possible way, pose any threat or danger to the birds or their habitat. Make sure you do not change the natural order of their surrounding or disturb the food chain. Keep a safe distance and do not physically harm the birds or their nests.
Find people with similar interests
You can socialize with people online or locally through clubs and groups to get to know people that have the similar hobbies and interests.
It allows you to be a part of group ventures and also participate in multiple competitions as birders travel quite often to pursue rare birds.