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How To Learn the Basics of Bird Watching

If you donít know your robins from your sparrows and couldnít tell the difference between a bird of prey and a seed-eater then this guide on how to learn the basics of birdwatching is for you. When you learn the basics of birdwatching you donít only need a pair of binoculars that you will use to spot birds in amongst trees and tall grass - It is also especially helpful and rewarding to be able to identify the families and species to which the birds you are studying belong.

Knowing the name of your bird, and the family or group to which it belongs, can tell you so much about its habits, food preferences, mating behavior and nest building practices. This kind of information can be helpful in understanding observed behavior like feeding or roosting, pinpointing where you might find it at any given time as well as understanding its behavior at different times of the year.

There are many techniques that may be used to make identifying bird families and species a lot easier for the novice birdwatcher.

Before we get started it is important to remember that birdwatching is supposed to be fun so if you are learning the basics of birdwatching keep this in mind and donít get too frustrated if it takes some time getting to know the hundreds of birds in your area.

Two rules of thumb will help you in your task and they are:

1) Try to eliminate as many species as you can before you try to determine what a particular bird is and;

2) Remember that the bird you are seeing is probably a common species in the area and not likely to be the rarest available choice.

If you keep these two factors in mind your bird identification practice will be more rewarding because choices are limited. Donít make things harder than they need to be. You may want it to be an exotic find but chances are it wonít be. If you do get lucky it certainly is an occasion to celebrate, however!

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