Growing up, we all have hobbies that we flock to in the early years of our lives. LEGOs, dolls, sports, the list goes on. Our interests tend to change over time, and as we age we begin to explore and find other hobbies, other outlets, that have piqued our interest. So you may be wondering, why is a hobby like birdwatching so popular? There’s a multitude of reasons. Let’s take a look at some of them right now.
Low Barrier to Entry
So many hobbies out there require you to spend lots of money, or spend lots of time just to get started. Perhaps you have to get coached up first in order to make any progress, such as with woodworking. You don’t just automatically know how to use the tools at your disposal.
With birdwatching, it is a learn as you go endeavor. You have all the tools you need to start with right at your disposal: your eyes, and your ears. From there, you take the hobby further as your interest increases. Perhaps you don’t know how to identify a specific bird in your backyard. You try searching Google to see if you can find out exactly what kind of bird it is that you are looking at. As it turns out, “there’s an app for that”. In this article right here, we go over some of the best apps for iOS and Android in order to successfully identify birds in your area, find hotspots, as well as journal your own discoveries.
If you’re an avid birder, you might even go so far as to find the perfect camera for capturing the most majestic shots.
But you don’t have to spend that much to get started. If you have a backyard, you might not even need to leave your home. You can simply setup a chair on your deck, and enjoy the show.
Speaking of enjoying the show: birding is an extremely relaxing hobby. There is something so peaceful about hanging out with a cup of tea on your front porch and listening to the birds sing and play. You realize that these birds have lives of their own, and while you may have all of the worries and stress consuming you in your life, it gives you a moment in time where you can feel peace and just sort of “become one with nature”. I know, sounds kinda new age, right? But you wouldn’t really know until you’ve tried it.
In our very fast world, with all of the technology at our fingertips, it’s easy to get caught up in our daily lives and not stop to smell the roses. Perhaps you’ve taken a stroll to the local post office, or been on some other errand and not even realize the birds were singing all around you. Birding can be a meditative experience, much like practicing mindfulness. You can be present in the moment, watch and analyze these birds’ behavior, and take in the whole scene. When you let yourself be free and really start to watch birds, you realize there’s a whole world out there that you didn’t even know existed!
Social: Popular Birdwatching Hotspots and Tours
You can meet a lot of really great people birding. Hop on to google and type in “local birding tours”, and you’ll probably be shocked to find there’s a lot of folks out there organizing expeditions to go to marked hotspots: places where birds, exotic and all tend to congregate. You can learn about others’ experience in birdwatching, find out about fun new travel locations and learn a lot about yourself in the process. I’ve noticed that it’s not just limited to one age group or gender either: you could meet the hip 25 year old man who’s just taken up the hobby, the newbie 53 year old woman who found out about it just recently, or the 35 year old veteran woman who’s been at it for 15 years. It’s a fantastic way to meet new people, especially in the spring and summer time.
Discovery and Learning
Learning something new is fun. Perhaps you’ve always wondered what kind of bird it is that you are looking at. Maybe this same bird tends to hang around in your backyard every morning, and the thought has always been burning in your mind: what kind of bird is that! Well, when you take on birding, you can look these kinds of things up and journal about it. You can learn all about that bird, where it tends to build its nests, what it likes to eat, everything. And it’s a lot of fun to learn.
Get Some Sunshine
We’re told about how important it is to get outdoors. And it is very important, we all need vitamin D3, we all need some fresh air every once in a while. The problem is that sometimes you just don’t really have an excuse to be outside. You can’t just go outside and sit there, right?
Well, birding is absolutely perfect for this. It gives you an excuse to head outside for a while. Take your mind off of things, and soak up a little bit of sun (make sure you wear that sunblock)! Birdwatching is popular probably because of this reason alone.
Hopefully, if I did my job right, I have helped you to understand why birdwatching is so popular these days. It really is an emerging hobby, one that has been growing at a remarkable pace. I think that we’re all finally beginning to realize that we aren’t the only ones here on Earth: there’s literally a whole world out there that we don’t know about.