This post was originally run on April 11th, 2016. I hope you enjoy it.
The inspiration for this list is the fact that birds of all kinds are in the process of migration and spring has sprung. I thought I would start off with a little bird joke.
As migration approached, two elderly vultures doubted they could make the trip south, so they decided to go by airplane. When they checked their baggage, the attendant noticed that they were carrying two dead raccoons.
“Do you wish to check the raccoons through as luggage?” she asked.
“No, thanks,” replied the vultures. “They’re carrion.”*
*Courtesy of http://Hungarianbirdwatching.com
Top Ten Things Not to Do While Birdwatching
10 If you are birdwatching, do not leave home without your species checklist. If you do, at best, you will not know the species of birds in your area. At worst, you will broadcast to every watcher for ten miles that you have no idea what you are doing. (Which is the case, right? Slick.)
9 If you are birdwatching, do not ask someone if you could borrow their binoculars. If you do, at best, you will get a lecture on proper preparedness for birdwatching. At worst, the folks you ask will spread the word that you are an escaped mental patient. (Who else would ask for binoculars. It’s like using someone else’s toothbrush.)
8 If you are birdwatching, do not take a guess out loud about the species of bird. If you do, and you are wrong, your fellow birders will pounce as if they are Panthers to correct you. At worst, the leader of the group will ask you kindly to sit at the edge of the road with the hopes you will be run over. (Man, these folks are serious)
7 If you are birdwatching, do not toss terms like mantle, bib, and flair around lightly. If you do, at best, you will broadcast the fact that you should have stayed home. At worst, you might be responsible for that kindly old gent finally going postal after being so patient with you. (He is certainly agile with that cane, isn’t he?)
6 If you are birdwatching, do not snicker at the apparel of your fellow birdwatchers. If you do, at best, they all will be too busy to notice. At worst, they will all snicker at you when you need hospital care for the sunburn, chigger, and tick bites. (How’s that Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever treating you?)
5 If you are bird watching, do not make any sudden noises. If you do, at best, you will capture the frown crown. At worst, your noise caused the rare Tillywinkle Warbler to take flight, causing most of the group to miss the sighting. (Does that group murmuring sound like an old west posse?)
4 If you are bird watching, do not pull out a pastrami sandwich to munch on while looking at birds. If you do, at best, your fellow birders will try to ignore you and the pastrami. At worst, the leader will offer a kindly suggestion about the appropriate place for that sandwich. (No one told you that eating and bird watching are not allowed. The location suggested for the sandwich sounded quite impractical and dark, didn’t it?)
3 If you are bird watching, do not yell “Tally Ho” when you sight a rare species. If you do, at best, the bird will fly away. At worst, the group is not carrying a defibrillator to handle what could be resultant heart attacks. (Those old folks go down like ten-pins, right, Buster?)
2 If you are bird watching, do not offer your fellow watchers a pull from the old flask. If you do, at best, they will try to lose you in the woods. At worst, just as you thought you were getting along, you realize the group is setting you up for an intervention. (After all, no self-respecting birder would chance anything that would interfere with seeing the birds. Therefore, you need help)
1 If you are bird watching, do not walk and watch at the same time. If you do, At best, that hole you stepped in is only a few inches deep. At worst, you could walk off the end of the swamp pier and into the waiting jaws of “Old Hickory,” the crocodile. (He gets, at least, one a month this way.)