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On The Wing: The Increased Popularity Of Birdwatching

A Red-headed barbet (Eubucco bourcierii) perches in the Cloud Forest of San Antonio in Colombia. Colombia is the country with the largest number of bird species in the world.
A Red-headed barbet (Eubucco bourcierii) perches in the Cloud Forest of San Antonio in Colombia. Colombia is the country with the largest number of bird species in the world.

Chirp. Tweet.

People are hearing birds more clearly, and loudly, than ever. As more people stay home, noise pollution decreases, meaning we can better hear our feathered friends.

And it seems people are more interested in birdwatching as coronavirus restrictions limit movement. Downloads of the National Audubon Society’s app have doubled compared to the same time last year.

For the African American community, birds have represented an allegory for freedom and hope. This construction most notably appears in Maya Angelou’s poem, “Caged Bird.”

And late last month, a white woman called the police on Christian Cooper, a Black birdwatcher, after he told her to leash her pet. This viral clip encouraged other black birdwatchers to share their experiences.

We talk all things bird behavior, how birds communicate and birdwatching while black. 

Some audience members may have heard listener Glenis Redmond reading her poetry on the air. Here’s a full recording of what she sent us. 

1A · Listener Glenis Redmond Reads ‘Caged Bird Sings’

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