Photo Credit: Mathew Romack

Photo Credit: Mathew Romack

Grab your lawn chair (and maybe a pair of binoculars) and head out into your own backyard for a FREE CONCERT! YES, right in your backyard!! It’s spring and the birds are singing. When I walked outside this morning to feed my chickens, I heard robins, California quail, pygmy nuthatches, juncoes, mourning doves and even a varied thrush! As we move into spring and the days get longer, a beautiful concert is, literally, right outside our door. (Albeit…it is a morning concert…so grab your coffee…rainforest alliance preferred).

Birdwatching is an eco-friendly hobby. Like the eco-friendly sports we’ve featured, it doesn’t require using fossil fuels. It’s simply exploring the world around you. Once you start noticing the life in your own yard, something incredible happens. You start noticing more activity than you ever realized possible! You start caring more about the world around you. Pretty soon you’ll find yourself in that special group of people who can entertain themselves for HOURS for FREE wherever they are. But watch out…you might start investing in bird feeders and bird food. Your friends might start to wonder why you don’t go anywhere anymore and you’ll have to explain that you are so very content just sitting in your backyard!

birding

Photo Credit: Martin Pettitt

The Cornell Lab of Ornithology says that “birds put a lot of effort into singing, drumming, winnowing, and otherwise displaying. They are trying to impress mates and proclaim territories.” But they don’t just sing, they also “call”, which are sounds used for interacting with family members, alerting one another to the presence of predators, keeping in touch while flying, or to share information about food.

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If you do want to learn about birds, there are 5 keys to identification (check out the information on their website to learn more):
1. Size and Shape
2. Color Pattern
3. Behavior
4. Habitat
5. Songs and Calls

If you’re seeking an eco-friendly hobby and strive to be more in-tune with the world around you, step outside tomorrow morning for just 3 minutes. Close your eyes and listen. The beauty of nature surrounds us. For those who partake, you will never be bored wherever you are. What a gift!

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