Birder's Guide

MAR 2018

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 14 of 73

A D V E R T I S I N G until now! Tropical Birding has designed a series of trips to cater for the vacant 'Birding with a camera' sweet spot! Changing interests of Tropical Birding guides We also surveyed our guides and trip leaders to see how their relative interests had changed in the last decade. They are all still very keen birders, and enjoy guiding pure birding tours, as well as photography trips and relaxed custom tours. But when they are out enjoying nature on their own dime, you can see in the triangular graph below that their relative interests have mostly converged into the birding/photography sweet spot (the shaded zone). With the new 'Birding with a Camera' tours we have designed, the guides can now interact with clients who have the same core passion for both bird- ing and photography. It is not just the Tropical Birding guides whose interests are changing With responses from over 200 Tropical Birding clients and con- tacts, we again plotted the 10- year change within the broader birding community. Take a look at the triangular graph below where you can see the main shift in fo- cus for birders: from 2008 in blue (mostly strictly birding), to 2018 in red (a birding/photography hy- brid). Again, there has been a shift into the sweet spot. There has been a paradigm shift in the way we bird, but we are still birders There has been an undeniable shift in focus for at least 40% of birders towards including photography as a vital component in their birding. This is not nec- essarily an attempt to get publication-quality photos, but rather a way of preserving a birding experience, perhaps to share it on social media, and for many, to aid in the identification of tricky species or to docu- ment rarities. Birders are equally happy snapping away with digi-scoping adaptors, point-and-shoots, micro four-thirds and SLRs with whooping great lens- es. But the camera is now a vital tool in their arsenal, while seeing and enjoying birds remains the most important element of their enjoyment.

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