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Christmas Bird Count December 14-January 5

Kingfisher on a Perch in the Rain
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Every year more and more people are becoming attracted to bird watching or what one would call “birding.”  The National Audubon Society collects and records millions of bird sightings and behaviors every year.  One might wonder why one would be attracted to this kind of hobby.  Some have stated that doing this connects them closer to nature.  “Birding” can be done just about anywhere, even in the bigger cities where there is a park.  Central Park, New York can be a great experience—try it—and you will notice how in tune you become with these little creatures and their environment and all of the background noises of rumbling buses, searching helicopters, and impatient traffic will fade into the distance.   

“Birding” is actually very good for you according to BioScience, 2017.  It can improve your psychological, emotional, and physical well-being.  Bird watching is very educational as well.  It can introduce you to a vast variety of species where you can observe their colors, plumage patterns, and yes, even their personalities.  There are over 10,000 different species that range to tiny hummingbirds to bigger birds such as ostriches. 

Many paleontologists believe that birds are actually dinosaurs. Scientists have stated that birds are a direct ancestor of Theropods (small ones, not the T-Rex man-eaters we see on all the Jurassic Park films) and that their evolution started to occur during the Jurassic period, approximately 200 million years ago.  Some theropods had the same body features as birds such as feathers; they were lightweight and had winged bodies.  The smaller theropods eventually migrated into the trees in search of food and to shield themselves from predators. 

For more about the annual bird census, see the National Day Calendar article: CHRISTMAS BIRD COUNT WEEK – December 14 – January 5 and Audubon’s Join the Christmas Bird Count.

“The bird is powered by its own life and by its own motivation.” -A.P.J. Abdul Kalam