Birder's Guide

MAY 2016

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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Young Birders 44 Birder's Guide to Conservation & Community | May 2016 tions as an after-school program. If you don't feel you have the time to dedicate to starting a youth club, pair up with parents of stu- dents and make it a group effort. If it is a general nature club, offer to take charge of the birding portion of it. • Think from a new birder's perspective. Not everyone begins with the drive to see something rare. Enjoy common birds doing interesting things, like an American Kestrel eating dragonfies while on the wing or Least Sandpipers probing the mudfats at close range. Watch a Snowy Egret Invite a young birder on one of your regu- lar outings, or offer to show a new nature spot. You don't have to go far. Your local urban park will do just fne, at least to start with. Don't focus solely on putting names to birds, and be sure to allow time to observe behavior. Give the young bird - er ample time to work out his or her own identifcations. • Start a young birder's club or help out with an existing one. Find a list of existing clubs at ebird.org/content/ybn/clubs. Youth birding clubs are sometimes associated with local Audubon chapters. At a few schools, teachers have started youth nature organiza- Fledge is an annual August weekend, with events worldwide, focused on re- cruiting new birders of all ages. Host your own event or fnd one that's al- ready planned for your area. Learn more at globalbirdinginitiative.org. • Take a young birder under your wing. Do you know of a youngster in your lo- cal bird club? Are his or her parents interested or knowl - edgeable about birding? Ask how you can help.

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