Birder's Guide

DEC 2015

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 33 of 43

32 Birder's Guide to Gear | November 2015 10 Tech Essentials There are a slew of phonescoping adapt- ers. Meopta came in early with adapters for a range of optics brands. Lately, the optics manufacturers themselves have jumped in to custom-ft their own models, with mixed results. A new adapter, the Phone- Skope, is worth a look. It shows more engineering foresight than many of the optics companies' models. For example, it is compatible with rugged and waterproof Lifeproof and Otterbox cases. This is a big improvement over the old scenario of for- feiting waterproof protection or prying off your rugged case every time you want to phonescope. 10 Rare Birds eBook | My fnal pick delves deeper into the birds of North America. What if someone starts talking about the Collared Plover or Tufted Fly- catcher? No feld guide app, nor Dunne's Essential Companion, nor BNA Online will cover you for all the rare birds. And birders love rarities. Howell, Lewington, and Russell's in- credibly detailed and wonderfully illus- trated book, Rare Birds of North America, is now available as an ebook for Kindle, iBooks, Nook, and Google Play. Here you can study ahead, have feld guide coverage for a stake-out, or armchair bird a future rarities trip—all on your phone or tablet. And There's More | I've selected ten digital birding tools I'd hate to part with. Sure, fve or ten years ago I didn't own any of these. But now they do seem indispens- able. And these ten are just the start. Today you can carry a milk-crate's worth of feld guide apps for under $50. You can build your own digital bookshelf of reference volumes. You can add a couple of light- weight electronic gizmos to your pack and radically transform your ability to capture sound and photograph distant birds. Only a handful of technology items—yet every- thing is different.

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