Birder's Guide

NOV 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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Page 19 of 43

18 Birder's Guide to Gear | November 2016 Chums forgiving elastic Urbans for wire frames; and ropes. The Neoprene variety even floats! The eyewear retainers attach snugly to your glasses by sliding down the ear- pieces or with gripping rubber ends, and they usually have a bead or two to more tightly secure them onto your head. I like No-Tails because they're shorter and don't get caught on my collar or snag my binocu- lar strap, and they fit under my bike hel- met. The Adjustable Orbiter, a lightweight stainless steel version, is similar to No-Tails in this regard. The Flyvines line, a Chums partner from Montana, recycles used fly-fishing filament to create eyewear retainers (which don't have snugging beads) and other outdoor accessories. Flyvines products are hand- braided, so each piece is one of a kind. Accessory Cases Different styles of versatile accessory cases are designed for various tasks and come in many sizes. They all help keep your essen- tial equipment organized and protected. For example, the Storm series has water- proof pockets and bags while the Venture and Venture Lite series are water-resistant and can be used for cell phones, passports, or tools, like the Essentials case or Hex Roll-Up case. There are also toiletry bags. Neoprene and hard shell eyewear cases are available in solid colors and in camo, and handy Microfiber Storage Bags can be used as eyeglass cleaning cloths and as protec- tion for flashlight lenses. Optical Accessories Other optical accessories useful to birders include lens-cleaning pouches, which have a microfiber cloth for cleaning eyeglasses, binoculars, scopes, and computer screens. The cloth tucks into its own pouch to keep it clean when not in use. The lens- cleaning kit comes with a microfiber cloth gency for endless uses, such as making a dog leash or becoming a fishing line. Additional Items Other Chums items useful to birders in- clude The Band, a line of comfortable sports watch bands in various patterns and widths; Interlocking and Zipquix zipper pulls for repairs and security; Stowaway equipment straps to organize your gear in the garage or attach it to your bike or backpack; the Acadia paracord bracelet; and wallets. The slim Surfshorts wallet could be considered a Chums accessory case or a keychain, as it comes with a key ring. The Active wallets line includes Shoe Pockets, a small wallet you can attach to your run - ning or hiking shoe; Wrist Wallets; Arm- band Cases for smartphones or iPods; and the Marsupial, a credit card-sized pocket with a keyring. Plus there's a Floating Marsupial for the river. Surfshorts and Marsupial wallets come in many colors, including camo. For more information, updates, and many more options, visit and and cleaning solution in a storage case. There's even an eyewear repair kit. Keychains Chums keychains are both fun and useful. Some of them are tools. There are the stan- dard steel and aluminum carabiners with brightly patterned, colored webbing, and several more styles that can be used to clip your gear together. The Vortex utility wrench keychain has durable, hex-bit wrench openings and, like some of the others (Quencher, Hook, Brew Clip), doubles as a bottle opener. The Key Quiv- er helps organize and silence your keys in a small, comfortable package that comes with a Tasker tool, which has rulers and screwdrivers. Paracord keychains, like the Eiger carabiner, are made with 6 feet of 550-lb.-rated parachute cord with 12 core strands that can be unraveled in an emer- Beyond Coastal I've found that Beyond Coastal sunscreen and lip balm are neces- sary when I go birding. Owned by Chums, Beyond Coastal is a suncare line that started in 2006. The sunscreen offers broad- spectrum protection (SPF 34) formulated to moisturize, nourish, repair, and hydrate. It's fragrance-free, non-greasy, and quick-ab- sorbing, and it rubs in clear. The handy little 2.5-ounce tubes can travel in your carry-on luggage (but 4-ounce tubes can't), and the lip balms are a real treat in flavors like citrus and cherry blossom. Yum! Learn more at

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