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WHY STUDY BIRDS?

GETTING STARTED IN BIRD WATCHING

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The Technique of Elimination

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"Light conditions play tricks"

"Blue is a structural color..."

"Immature birds may look different..."

Breeding versus non-breeding plumage

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Seed eating
Mostly finches, buntings, grosbeaks, sparrows

Filter feeding
Swans, ducks, geese

Nectar feeding
Hummingbirds

Hooked
Birds of prey

Spear-like
Herons, egrets, bitterns

Insect eating
 Flycatchers, warblers, vireos

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Wingbars and Wing Patches

Chest Stripes and Spots

See how easy this is?

A little more challenging…

HABITAT ASSOCIATIONS and SEASON

Get an overall picture of the situation including
where you are in the country, in the habitat and in the time of year.

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Mixed Deciduous/Coniferous Forest

Old Field

BEHAVIORS

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Dipping flight

Flapping Versus Gliding
Flying accipiters such as Sharp-shinned Hawks, Cooper's Hawks, and Northern Goshawks typically make several wing flaps followed by a glide. Buteos, such as the Red-tailed Hawk, are usually seen soaring. Dashed lines indicate flapping, solid lines soaring.

Up-and-down Flight Pattern

Finches exhibit a bouncing flight, whereas woodpeckers generally fly in a pattern of moderate rises and falls.

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Becoming a
better birder:

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Field Guide Considerations
You’ll eventually have them all!

Optics
Binoculars

Roof Prism or Porro Prism?

The Numbers Game

Optics
Spotting scopes

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