Saturday, July 16, 2011

Enlightening Videos for Birders


The Cornell Lab of Ornithology's website has an excellent selection of YouTube videos you can view free online! Most are 2-5 minutes long, and well worth watching for the interesting subject matter and beautiful camera work. Videos are divided into headings such as Voices, Through the Lens, How Nature Works, Birding By Ear, and Inside Birding.  There are also stories which focus on events such as a Canadian Arctic Expedition and a Sharp-tailed Grouse Battle.

For you lifelong learners out there, it would be easy to treat yourself to one video a day, but you may find it difficult to limit yourself to just one.  I found it fascinating to hear and learn calls of the American Bittern, Eastern Screech Owl, and the Magnificent Frigatebird, to have a lesson in bird i.d. by size and shape, and to get an update on the plight of our Gulf Coast bird populations.  And I'm never opposed to being an armchair traveler; I was transported to visit the birds of northern Australia and of the the Mississippi River, and observe the world's first restored colony of Atlantic Puffins off the coast of Maine.

It's no wonder the Cornell Lab of Ornithology can provide us with such compelling and varied imagery.  According to the About Us page on their website, "The Cornell Lab of Ornithology is a world leader in the study, appreciation, and conservation of birds. Our hallmarks are scientific excellence and technological innovation to advance the understanding of nature and to engage people of all ages in learning about birds and protecting the planet."  This noteworthy non-profit has been doing its exceptional work since 1915.

This ever-evolving video collection is a treasure trove of information, not only to learn from, but to share and simply delight in.  I encourage you bookmark the link, and return often!

Nina Cheney
Eagle Optics Staff
Binoculars: Bring them. See what they bring you.

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