(Shannon Hogan, 2022) Spotted some chickadees on a summer hike in Kw’as Park!

Small Acts of Conservation: Become a Better Birder!

– by Shannon Hogan, 2 May 2023

Sometimes the easiest way to practice conservation in your daily life, is to just notice the nature that’s all around you.

In the early stages of the pandemic, I found the lockdowns and isolation extremely hard, as I’m sure many others did as well. I found myself turning to nature to provide me with entertainment, physical activity and for help in calming my mind. What began as simple walks through the woods soon became a never-ending game of eye spy: birding!

All you really need for this fun game is your eyes or your ears, but you can always elevate your experience by bringing along a pair of binoculars and a bird identification field book. Better yet, if you’re a bit tech savvy, there are loads of easy to use and super helpful smartphone apps to use!

Check out these handy websites/phone apps to become a better birder!


●      https://nestwatch.org/
●      Have a nest in your backyard or a nest box that you enjoy keeping an eye on? Sign up with NestWatch to learn about nest and egg identification, learn about birdhouses and contribute helpful scientific data!


●      https://ebird.org/home
●      Join the world’s largest birding community! If you love lists and keeping track of all the birds you see, you’ll love this website and app! You can even upload photos and audio recordings of the birds you see and hear.

Merlin Bird ID

●      https://merlin.allaboutbirds.org/
●      Need help identifying a bird? This website/app will ask you 3 simple questions to help you figure out what bird you spotted. Super fast and super helpful! You can even connect this to your eBird account and keep track of all the birds Merlin Bird ID has helped you identify.


●      https://birdnet.cornell.edu/
●      Are you even out in the forest and hear a new bird call, but can’t seem to spot the bird? This website/app will be your new best friend! Simply record the unknown bird call using the smartphone app and it will tell you right away, or if you don’t have the app and prefer to use the website, take a normal audio recording on your preferred device, and upload the audio file when you get back home.

We would love to hear about and post your Small Acts of Conservation Kindness on your property! Please submit your short story and tell us something fun about your project by reaching out to us at: friendsofcortes@gmail.com.

We welcome everyone to take action with us and become a member, donate or volunteer with us!