Birding is easy. It is massive.
The new type of birdwatching and naturewatching which concentrates on sharing photos on social media and learning as you go along, has the potential to become very popular and mainstream. In a way it already is. But there is little direction. It is also necessary for the existing (old school) community of birders to embrace the new trends and actively make birding inclusive.
Why? Because birdwatching needs to grow to counter act the increased threats on nature. Birding needs more ambassadors. All human beings should care for birds, and we would have a better planet. More people would understand that it is necessary to save resources and to conserve nature. More people would understand the need to live in a more sustainable way. Birding is educational.
The purpose with this blog series is to produce an online resource “how to become a birdwatcher in the digital age” in form of a free downloadable ebook. The ebook will reach a lot of people. If it is free and readily available there will be a lot of downloads. There ought to be a tremendous pool of people who would download, if there are 47 million people in the US who care about birds enough to call themselves birdwatchers.
Yet, there are at best 40.000-50.000 serious birders if one add up all people who subscribe to email lists for birders.
We should really ask ourselves, what it is we are doing that keeps 99.9% of those interested in birds away from the birding network.
Should we try something new? A free manual put together by a number of well-known birders, which focus on presenting all the birding resources one find on the internet and how one can get started by oneself and get some tutoring on the internet via for example Facebookgroups. A manual how to feed birds and make gardens that birds will love. A manual that helps you pick a better and not too expensive point and shoot camera. A manual to finding decent binoculars that suits you and your wallet. A manual that helps you find a bird club or a birding festival. Basically, a Birding 101 for the digital age.
That is something new, so let’s try that. I am not saying it is the only way. Just one way of many. But it is new! And its free.
As a reader of this blog, you will have an important role. You are an ambassador for nature. Subscribe to this blog, share the blog on list servers you participate in or share it on Facebook and Twitter, tell your friends and take your friends birding.
We are about to embark on a magical journey of naturewatching, and birds will be our main focus.