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Birdchick Podcast #73: Where Can A Birder Go

Two VERY interesting articles on my list this week.  One from the American Birding Association’s publication called Winging It.  Go to the Winging It page and click on Vol 23, no. 5 and look for Birding With A Conscience.

Also, check out this article on Birding While Black–Does It Really Matter? He was part of the Focus on Diversity birding conference.  You can watch some of the speakers here.

Fidelity Exploration & Production Co., of Denver agreed to plead guilty and pay a $1,500 fine for killing a solitary sandpiper that was found in a waste pit during drilling operations in western North Dakota.

When I was in North Dakota this past June with fellow bird bloggers we saw the above oiled duck (I think it’s an oiled pintail).  I’m now wondering if was oiled in similar circumstances and wish we’d documented it better.  It was far away on private property and mobile enough to get away from us.  There was no safe way to retrieve it, but wish I documented it better.

Human encroachment on the Tundra (like oil refineries) are creating an imbalance in the predator/prey balance.

From Nature Canada, Birds at Risk: The Importance of Canada’s Boreal Wetlands and Waterways:  “The North American boreal forest supports more than 50 percent of the global populations of 96 bird species, including landbirds, shorebirds, and waterbirds.10 The boreal is critical to the majority of iconic species such as the Common Loon, Whooping Crane, Canada Warbler, and White-throated Sparrow.”

And if you don’t understand why the tar sands are a bad idea, take a look at this before and after photo of what happens to the area when they go in for the oil.  This is terrible land stewardship, short-sighted and a terrible option.

And now a really cleansing link:

Really awesome homemade kestrel Halloween costume.



4 comments to Birdchick Podcast #73: Where Can A Birder Go

  • Abrahm

    I’m sorry that you had to cover so many depressing stories, but I really think it’s important to spread awareness of these issues and information like this from a trusted source is more likely to influence than from a talking head. I think you’re a well trusted source and you have the power to reach people.

    I think that when it comes to cultural diversity and awareness in niche hobbies the best thing to do is keep bringing up the issue, find diverse speakers for gatherings (do you call them cons? I have not yet been to a birding thing) and make them headliners. Have panels (do you do panels?) that are mostly people of color (or whatever the goal is, women possibly) and let them speak on the issues and hopefully spread awareness of problems instead of letting middle class white dudes tell everyone what their problems are.

    I think the most important goal is outreach. Reach out to inner city neighborhoods and get kids out to see birds and nature. Some will be bored, but some will be amazed.

    Just random thoughts, but I appreciate you bringing up the heavy topics. It’s hard, but knowing is half the battle or so GI Joe taught me.

  • Kudos on bringing up this topic. Before I listened to the podcast I figured it was going to be about “green washing” or unethical conservation practices. Another area where birders, and other sorts of ecotourists (not to be confused with ecoterrorists), can vote with their feet and wallets.

  • Brantgoose

    I think that duck is a drake redhead.

  • julie mccall

    I love the podcast, and usually listen on the train, usually to my favorite birding destination. I was only slightly behind, and listened to this one this morning… Non-birding Bill, J’accuse!! I know you said “Harold”, but I’ve had the theme song from Howard the Duck stuck in my head all day. *sob*

    (In your defense, in the days before I knew the IDs of many birds, all Double-crested Cormorants were named “Horace”, and all egrets and herons were named “Stipe”. I’ll forgive you tomorrow when I have a new earwig.)