Birder's Guide

DEC 2014

Birder's Guide is the American Birding Association's newest publication. Each issue focuses on a key subject, providing tips from experienced birders on a wide variety of topics like Travel, Listing & Taxonomy, Gear, and Conservation & Community.

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Page 22 of 43

21 December 2014 | Birder's Guide to Gear be ideal for a situation like a photo blind, where you might be hunkered down for several hours, but it is not as comfort - able to use while walking around. You can, however, use part of the device as a funnel without using the adhesive. One of the advantages to the funnel is that it's customizable: it's able to be cut into differ- ent shapes to ft anyone's body. Due to the adhesive, this attachment to the body can- not be reused over several days. That part of the apparatus has to be repurchased. If you hold the funnel up without removing the adhesive cover, it can be reused. Stadium Gal runs about $35 per pack- age, and you have the option of purchas- ing a storage bag that is either 17 oz. (good for one restroom break) or 34 oz. (good for two or three, depending on how much liquid you drink). Depend • Depend is a brand of absorbant, disposable underwear that makes an effort to look more like regular cotton underwear; there are even different styles and cuts. You can either use their website tool to determine which style is right for your needs or purchase a sample pack at your local drugstore. When you wear one, it feels like bulky cotton un- derwear but is not very noticeable. It is pri- marily for urinary incontinence, but if you do not want to drop your pants outdoors, it will work. The surprisingly absorbent un- derwear can take a lot of liquid: at least one is fexible, but not so much that you could spell your name in the snow. Freshettes are in the $24 price range and can be ordered in pairs for about $40. Urinelle • This company claims to offer a disposable and biodegradable funnel. Perhaps it is dis- posable in Western toilets, but I wouldn't bury it in the woods. The cardboard fun- nels come in a pack of seven, and you can ft the wrapped, fattened funnels in a large coat pocket. To use, lower your trou- sers halfway and press the large end of the funnel against your body. Because you are holding thin cardboard, the fow will feel quite warm and even wet in your hand. Trust the cardboard: there is no breach. These do the trick, but are not reusable. Urinelles are sold in packs of seven and average roughly $10 per pack. Stadium Gal • Stadium Gal is the sister product of Sta- dium Pal, made famous by the David Se- daris essay on the "Stadium Buddy". The female version is a complex medical prod - uct that was originally meant for female urinary incontinence. To use the product as it is intended, a smooth body surface is required with which to temporarily attach the funnel, and then a tube is used to fun- nel liquid into a bag that is strapped to the legs and can be emptied later. This might storage. The company mentions that this particular funnel is machine washable. Whiz Freedom is from the U.K.; with the current exchange rate, the price comes to about $30. Shewee • This is possibly the most discreet device available and comes with its own nonde- script travel case that resembles a tooth- brush case. It is supposed to not only al- low women to urinate while standing up, but also claims the user can simply unzip her trousers without having to lower them halfway like other funnels. The narrow fun- nel of the Shewee is long and extends far back. Because of the thin shape and shal- low reservoir, you have to keep a tiny bit of space between it and your body during use to prevent leakage. Shewee sells spe- cially made underwear in the "boy shorts" style with a fy front for easy access. This product is for experienced professionals. The small reservoir requires extreme fow control and even then you could still have a breach. But once you are used to the set- up, it's handy for cold weather because you don't have to undo as many layers. The Shewee is available in "Power Pink", "Pure White", and "Nato Green". The fun- nel itself is in the $16 price range, but you can get the underwear and funnel together in an "Active Pack" for about $28. Freshette • This thin, plastic funnel with fve-inch-long tube has a loyal fan base. The tube stays in the funnel until you are ready to use it, at which point you pull out the tube until it clicks. Make sure it clicks, or there will be a surprise leak onto your pants! Once you are fnished, you can pop the tube back up into the funnel and store the device in its travel case for future use. Of all the devices, this one gives the best chance of your us- ing it while only unzipping the fy of your trousers. However, depending on the type of pants you are wearing and your body shape, you may have to pull your trousers down halfway to allow the device to ft properly against your body. The long tube When the snow is ten inches deep, squatting is not an option. Photo © Sharon Stiteler

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