Whether you're a beginning bird watcher or someone who has some experience, you probably would like to spot more birds and get a better view of these amazing creatures. But how can you become a better birder? How do you increase your chances of finding a rare bird? Or what could you do to make your bird watching experience more fun and enjoyable? Whatever it means to you, we have listed some important tips that are sure to make you a better birder.
Avoid Getting Too Close and Making Noise
It’s very tempting to try and get as close as you can to see a particular bird, but do your best to keep your distance. Think about it, the more you make them feel threatened or uncomfortable the greater your chances that they will fly away. Also keep this in mind when you’re walking to avoid scaring them away. So take your time, move slowly and avoid sudden movements - and above all have a great pair of binoculars that can give you the power and HD clarity to provide you with a detailed view from a far distance.
Any loud noises can startle birds and quickly make them fly away. So, remember to turn off your cellphone, keep your talking to a minimum, move quietly and try to be still. You’ll be surprised at how many more birds you will spot and how better your viewing can be. Of course, noice is less critical when viewing birds at far distances.
Try Attracting More Birds
If your searching for birds in your backyard, you must focus on the type of feed and landscaping that will attract the most birds. Provide food, clean water, shelter and select plants, which support the insects many birds depend on.
There are many types of seeds, seed blends, suet cakes, fruits and treats to pick from. If there are certain birds you want to see in your yard, make sure to include that bird’s favorite food. Since there are certain birds that only live in certain areas of the world, so make sure you put out food that works best in your area. There are charts and seed suggestions on the internet that can help you target your favorite species.
Use Your Ears
You may not see some birds before you hear them. The sounds that birds make can be of great help to bird watchers and some species of birds would actually be very hard to detect if they weren't vocal. Birds of all ages and sexes use many types of calls, and short vocalizations to beg for food, find courtship, warn of predators or threaten intruders in their territory. Some calls are distinctive and instantly recognizable, while others sound quite similar to calls of other species and are thus less useful for field identification.
To become more proficient with a variety of bird calls and songs, record birds with a sound recorder or video camera or listen to recordings of bird vocalizations on apps, videos or web sites.
Use Phone Apps To Help Identify Birds
More birders are leaving their books at home and turning to mobile bird apps as a lightweight, compact alternative. Whether you’re trying to ID a migrating bird, learn more about the birds you spot from your kitchen window, or to use when your in hot pursuit to find a rarely-seen species to add to your list. Check out the many new bird watching apps currently available.
Have The Right Binoculars
Because it's usually difficult to get close to birds in their natural habitat, birders must rely on their binoculars to find and view birds from a distance. Unfortunately, just any standard pair of binoculars is not the most effective for birding. Bird watching binoculars should give you the proper magnification, brightness, clarity, detail, true color and be durable enough to stand up to extreme weather conditions. Selecting 8x or 10x magnification is a personal choice, with strong opinions among birders on both sides. Some bird watchers prefer using higher magnification for long-distance birding (for example, hawks, eagles, seabird watching, etc). For people who are not used to 10x binoculars, these binoculars may be better for long distances, but this usually means a narrower field of view, a slightly darker image in low light, and more noticeable hand-shake. An 8x magnification gives you a smaller image that’s wider, brighter, and easier for finding and following birds. Whatever you choose, the image quality has an overriding importance. In addition, a wide field of view and close focus are also two measures that affect how much you’ll see, which is very important when bird watching.
So before purchasing a pair of binoculars, do your homework and choose binoculars that are designed for bird watching, delivers the best view and makes your birding experience enjoyable.
More Helpful Tips When Bird Watching
- Get to know the birds that are in your local area and study their habitat.
- Try to plan your walks with the sun behind you. This will make it easier to locate and view birds.
- When bird watching at a new location, do some research on birds in the area before you take the journey.
- Join a birding club or try to find a mentor who would be willing to pass on their knowledge.
- Patience, practice and perseverance can be your greatest assets!
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