Birding 101: Everything You Need to Know

December 22, 2023 | Source: EcoWatch | by Olivia Rosane

What Is ‘Birding’?

Birding is the act of observing and identifying birds in the wild as a form of recreation. This can range from taking note of all the birds who visit a backyard feeder, or traveling across the country to try to see more U.S. bird species than anyone else in a 12-month period, like the characters played by Jack Black, Owen Wilson and Steve Martin do in The Big YearBirding is a popular pastime: More than 45 million people bird in the U.S., and they spend around $41 billion a year on equipment like binoculars or trips to see birds. In the UK, more people belong to the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds than all of the country’s political parties put together. While it’s historically been associated with older, wealthier, whiter adults, visible interest in the activity is widening alongside awareness of its many benefits for both birders and birds.