Birdwatching Dot Com
Birdwatching Dot Com Newsletter Autumn Birding
October 2006


With breezy days and crisp nights, we're feeling the change in season here at Birdwatching Dot Com. It's exciting to be alive. At any moment a falcon, harrier, or other hawk may fly over, or a flock of migrating native sparrows may turn up in the underbrush. We grab our binoculars and take them along every time we step outside.

in this issue
  • Raptor Rapture
  • Light Getting in Your Eye
  • Dear Diane...
  • Stars of Navigation

  • Light Getting in Your Eye
    Exit pupil

    Birders sometimes buy large binoculars in hopes of maximizing brightness.

    But in daylight, a good 32mm binocular usually delivers all the light a person can use. It can give just as bright an image as a 42mm or even a 50mm binocular.

    Dear Diane...

    Dear Diane: Is there any way I can attract birds that don't come to feeders? I'd like to make my yard inviting to warblers, catbirds, thrushes, and birds like that. -- Rosemary C., Oxnard, CA

    Birds come to places that meet their basic requirements, such as food, water, and protection from weather and predators. In other words, habitat. If your backyard offers good habitat, it will be home to many birds. One way to improve to your yard's habitat is to create a brush pile.

    Stars of Navigation
    Indigo Buntings

    In fall, many birds are migrating to their winter homes. They travel great distances. Some fly non-stop across 600 miles of water to cross the Gulf of Mexico.

    Since the young hatched this year have never even seen their destination, it is hard to imagine how they find their way. But we do know something about how at least one species does it -- the indigo bunting.

    The peregrine falcon drawing is copyright Mimi Hoppe Wolf 1997.

    Raptor Rapture
    Peregrine Falcon

    The wildest of wild things pass through our human-ordered landscape in fall. Fall is raptor time in the much of the US.

    Many hawks nest and raise their young in the long-day latitudes of Canada and the northern states. In fall, they're riding the sky south.

    This is the window of opportunity to see more raptors than at any other time of year. It's also a great time to encounter a peregrine falcon.

    Read on...
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