Local birding challenges – and their impact on Birding and Birds

Etienne Marais

Local birding challenges – and their impact on Birding and Birds

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Recent years have witnessed a transformation of the birding environment both locally here in Southern Africa but also globally. Smartphone based listing apps tied to global bird databases like eBird have created a synergy between citizen science and the gamification of birding at local and regional levels. These have had and continue to have a profound impact on how birders record and collect data, report their sightings and are goal driven in both competitive and non-competitive ways.

Is this good or bad for birding? What impact can local and regional challenges have on our knowledge of the birds around us, and the conservation of rare and localised birds. The talk takes a look at eBird, Birdlasser, online “Big Days” and a host of other challenges. We explore changing birder behaviour, birding cultures, and other aspects of the psychology of birding. Is there potential for greater synergy between the gamification of birding and citizen science; and what does the future hold?

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Date and Time

Thu, May 16, 2024 at 19h00 (SAST)

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