Tips on How to Start Birdwatching for Beginners

Birdwatching is a leisurely activity that doesn’t require a lot of work, and it can happen from almost anywhere. There are a few tools to help you along the way, like binoculars and a birdwatching guide. It can also be handy to know what places to go to find certain birds.

Birdwatching can happen from your own home. Just look outside your window and notice the birds around you. I suggest trying to identify the birds you see every day that you might not always pay attention to. Birdwatching often requires patience, so don’t get discouraged when they fly away too quickly to identify them. To help attract birds to your home you can set out birdseed, or buy a birdbath.

If you want to drive to places to birdwatch, there are quite a few in the area. Birdwatching can be adventurous taking you to new destinations. Some of these places include the Oaks Preserve, Dry Creeks Preserve, Sequoia National park; Giant forest, and Mineral King. Traveling to different places is also a way to look for specific types of birds that might not be local to your area.

When bird watching it is useful to have a pair of binoculars that suit you. There are scopes with one lens or the original with two lenses. You don’t need the most expensive set; a reasonably priced binocular works just fine! Birdwatching guides are so numerous it is hard to pick the right one. Some have only drawings of birds, and some have all pictures. The bird guide you will want is any North American guide to birdwatching.

A small trick to birdwatching is to pay attention to detail. Having a keen eye can help you spot out-of-sight birds that sound like they are close by. Don’t give up too easily, sometimes you might find a bird that you cannot find in the voluminous pages of your guide. So, use your other resource, your phone. Sometimes typing in the specific details about the bird you see can pop up a result. Look through google photos, and scan through recently asked questions on google. Make sure that when googling for a result type in specific details like a small bird with a red belly in California. Putting the location helps narrow down a bird. There are also apps that can help you search for birds such as Merlin bird ID, and Audubon bird guide. Both are free.

Connecting to other people that enjoy birdwatching can be an opportunity to learn from experienced birdwatchers, or a chance to meet new people with the same interests. Tulare County has its own Audubon society on its website you can find upcoming events to attend.

Morning time is one of the best hours of the day to go birdwatching from the moment the sun rises. So, be prepared to get up early, and maybe bring along some coffee. Most birds are already out and about, so it is the best time to find that bird you are looking for.