I grew up in the country in a family of birdwatchers, but I never took interest in the popular hobby until I became a city dweller. Now, I've found bird watching to be a relaxing, affordable, and easy way to connect with nature while social distancing.
I started "birding" on my small back porch. We have a sliding glass door that leads to the porch, where our cat likes to watch squirrels and birds. One day, I looked out and saw a grey bird with a reddish-orange chest. I posted a picture of it on Instagram, asking if anyone knew what species it was. A few of my friends answered, "That's an American Robin!" With that, I was hooked. I now go out every day and sit on my back porch or in our front yard next to a little bird bath that was there when we moved in. I jot down descriptions of birds I don't know, take pictures if possible, and then conduct a search online. It's spring migration season, so this prime time to get into bird watching.
You don't have to live in around a lot of nature to be able to spot some of our region's most beautiful birds, and you don't even need binoculars. Urban bird watching, according to the National Audubon Society, is "hotter than ever!"
Free Resources for Identifying and Learning About Birds:
- Seek (by Inaturalist) is free, but has in-app purchases