eBird: Agreeing to agree

Cameron RuttBirding, General Rant2 Comments

eBird has done countless things to revolutionize birding, not the least of which includes elevating birding to a scientific pursuit, where a once recreational activity now has meaningful implications. What was once relegated to a single day of birding for most regions over the course of the year – the Christmas Bird Count – now occurs on a near daily … Read More

An indoor cat is a happy cat

Anna FasoliConservation Issues, General Rant, Science38 Comments

As an avid birder, I will say that there is nothing that induces more rage in me than seeing a domestic cat stalking a native bird. I observe outdoor domestic cats daily on my drive to work, as I pass open expanses of agricultural fields containing farms where “farm cats” roam free.  I even pass a house that has a … Read More

Things That Look Like Snowy Owls

Steve BrennerGeneral Rant, Identification4 Comments

With an apparent Snowy Owl invasion upon us this winter, the excitement over viewing such a majestic creature cannot be overstated. Snowy Owls are truly one of the natural world’s most awesome birds, and no one can fault you for being ecstatic about finding one in the Northeast, Midwest, or anywhere! Yet, regardless of location, weather conditions, or birding experience, … Read More

12 Steps to becoming a cooler birder

Luke MusherGeneral Rant35 Comments

Listen, we all know that we don’t engage in the coolest of activities. I mean I think it’s cool, you hopefully think it’s cool, but quite frankly, it’s inherently nerdy and most sound people would agree. Any activity that requires a lot of “useless” knowledge (to be clear, I don’t think it’s actually useless), a large proportion of your time … Read More

Bird Nicknames

Steve BrennerGeneral Rant12 Comments

Like any eclectic group of hobbyists and professionals, birders have slowly developed their own language. In the broad sense, many of these terms are second nature to us: lifer, dipping, MEGA, etc. This custom vernacular is essential to bird watching culture, and often times can be the quickest way to identify a sympathetic avian maniac versus an innocent bystander curious … Read More

Migration is over…why go birding?

Drew WeberBehavior, Birding, General Rant, Science1 Comment

I hear this often; complaints about migration being over, talk of there being no reason to get out early in the mornings, and having to wait for the fall to do any good birding. I say this is ridiculous. While migration does offer a spectacular pulse of new birds and at a higher concentration than out of the birding season, … Read More

PA Fall Migration Predictions – End of Oct: Part 2

Alex LamoreauxBird Finding Tips, Bird Sightings, Birding, birds in flight, distribution, eBird, General News and Info, General Rant, Migration, Migration Update, Photography, Predictions, Ranges and Distributions2 Comments

October is a very special time of the year in Pennsylvania. The first week of the month there are still a ton of neotropical migrants around, but then their numbers start to drop off drastically. Coming to the rescue are the sparrows and raptors, which really excel during the second half of the month. Waterfowl also begin to trickle through … Read More

PA Fall Migration Predictions – End of Oct: Part 1

Alex LamoreauxBird Finding Tips, Birding, birds in flight, distribution, eBird, General News and Info, General Rant, Migration, Migration Update, Photography, Predictions, Science1 Comment

October is a very special time of the year in Pennsylvania. The first week of the month there are still a ton of neotropical migrants around, but then their numbers start to drop off drastically. Coming to the rescue are the sparrows and raptors, which really excel during the second half of the month. Waterfowl also begin to trickle through … Read More

Slow Summer Birding…..

Alex LamoreauxBirding, birds in flight, General Rant, PhotographyLeave a Comment

The past few weeks birding has been pretty slow here in central Pennsylvania. Most of the breeding warbler species have stopped singing and are busy tending to their young and fall migration is just barely getting underway. It gets very hot by nine or ten in the morning and then activity stops altogether until around 8:30pm. Really the only thing … Read More

Unfortunate Photo Mess-ups…..

Alex LamoreauxBirding, General Rant, Photography6 Comments

[dc]T[/dc]he past few weeks, while birding has been slow, I have devoted my free time to finally organizing all my bird photos by species, month, and year. I finished that up a few days ago and then began going through them and picking out my single best shot of each species (if I even had anything worthwhile). Going through and … Read More