How To Make These Next Few Weeks A Little Easier, Courtesy Of Birds

The Cornell Lab of Ornithology has numerous resources to entertain and educate people of all ages while we are keeping our social distance. From live cams, to games to courses. So if you run out of closets to clean and cupboards to organize, click on the links below!

Here at Bird Cams, we recognize that the world is facing uncertain and challenging times ahead as we band together to control the spread of the novel coronavirus. We hope that during this time the birds can provide some respite to those in need of a peaceful moment and an outlet to reconnect with nature. For more ways to bring birds and nature into your home, check out these ideas from All About Birds

Live Cams: Bring The Birds To You

Stream one of our Bird Cams for peace, beauty, and intimacy with wild creatures. Many of our users keep a cam streaming all day long just for the calming outdoor sounds that filter in.

Bring nesting owlshawks, and Ospreys into your home

Or watch a rotating cast of birds at our feeder cams:

Ruffed Grouse and Evening Grosbeaks in snowy Ontario

Blue Jays and Northern Cardinals at our offices in Ithaca, New York

Tanagers and tiny toucans  (called aracaris) in tropical Panama

We wish you health, happiness, and safety! 

The Cornell Lab of Ornithology

Birding with Lewis & Clark

In these stressful times when we’re staying close to home, how about a trip across the US? This week Ed posted our 2019 birding trips on his Flickr site. A memorable trip was our month-long driving tour in July 2019 from Atlanta to the Oregon coast, a combination of birding and following the Lewis and Clark trail!

After some birding in Michigan, we headed west and followed Meriweather Lewis and William Clark on their trek across North Dakota, Montana, Idaho, Washington and Oregon to the Pacific. Then back home through California, Nevada, Utah and the Midwest. Ed is an avid history buff, so this was definitely on his bucket list. I was a bit wary of a driving trip of that distance. But I have to say, it was a wonderful experience for 29 days!!! We visited many wonderful National Parks, including Theodore Roosevelt in North Dakota (what a fabulous sleeper), Yellowstone in Montana, Crater Lake in Oregon, and Redwood in California.

To follow our journey on Flickr, here’s the URL:

https://www.flickr.com/photos/edkon/

Some Flickr navigation tips:

The home page that comes up is the “Photostream” – a chronological view of all our birding trips with the Lewis and Clark trip first. When you get to the bottom of each Photostream page, click to the next page to keep the story going.

To see the name of the bird, or a caption, place the mouse pointer over the photo. And if you’d like to view the photos in a Slideshow instead, click the button above “Clark” on the Photostream.

On the Photostream home page you’ll see tabs under the banner. Click on “Albums” and you’ll see all our 2019 trips. Including an album of the many birds we’ve spotted and photographed throughout 2019 on Seabrook Island. There are also albums of my 2018 US Big Year, and our many other wonderful trips through the years.

So, if you need some diversion, or something to lull you to sleep at night, take a look at our birds. Enjoy!

Article by Aija Konrad, photos by Ed Konrad

Cancellation of 2020 SIB Shorebird Steward Program

We hope you and your families are doing your best to stay safe and healthy during this challenging time as the news of coronavirus spreads in our community, country and world!  Our lives have changed dramatically since we first put out the call for volunteers for our inaugural SIB Shorebird Steward Program back in January, 2020.

We have made the decision to cancel the SIB Shorebird Steward Program for this year.  In the last week, we have enough experience to realize we can not safely stay 6’ apart from each other and the use of the scope and other tools bring risk of contamination if anyone has the disease, especially if they are a carrier with no symptoms.

We would like to thank the more than 40 people who volunteered for this program, many who completed the training and participated in a shift on North Beach during the past three weeks. We hope everyone will use their knowledge about the birds on our beach to share with friends, family and those you meet as you are safely out and about. We will continue to send out information through our SIB blogs and Tidelines.  

We hope many of you will volunteer when we start the SIB Shorebird Steward Program again! We appreciate the support we’ve received from the Town of Seabrook Island, the SIPOA, the Seabrook Island Club and all the Seabrook Island Birders’ members and friends for our birds!


The SIB Shorebird Steward Program Core Team

  • Mark Andrews
  • Joleen Ardaiolo
  • Nancy Brown
  • Marcia Hider
  • Aija Konrad
  • Ed Konrad
  • Bob Mercer
  • Charley Moore

email: SIBStewards@gmail.com

Social Distancing Entertainment – Bird Games

Although we shared this information last November, we thought it might be appropriate to distribute again for anyone looking to entertain young people or even themselves! Here are three games that we thought all of you might enjoy to test your bird knowledge!

In the first game called “Bill Me,” you have to combine two words to make the name of a bird. Next, you have to match each of the birds with the appropriate bill shape.

The second handout has two games, the first is called “Fake Names,” and it lists fifteen bird names, of which eight are not real birds. The final game is a list of five statements, and you need to determine if they are True or False.

As the holiday season approaches, we hope you will print out these games and test your friends and family’s knowledge! To view the answers, visit SIB’s “Bird Games & Puzzles” page where you will find not only the two puzzles and answers discussed above, but an additional two puzzles. Don’t cheat and look at the answers before you try each of the puzzles!

Escape to Nature from Home with BirdNote

During this time of social distancing, stay connected to nature through BirdNote! The first season of Sound Escapes is a great place to start. Join Ashley Ahearn and acoustic ecologist Gordon Hempton for sonic adventures in some of the most wild and sound-rich places in the world. (Hint: if you’d like to hear the sounds of the Indigo Bunting, don’t miss Land Between the Lakes.)

Click on an episode below to listen:  

Relearn the Art of Listening
The Song of the Big Island
The Auditory Horizon
Land Between the Lakes
A Jubilant Riot of Music
Cold Lake Amphitheater
Nightfall on the Zabalo

More ways to connect with nature through BirdNote:

Subscribe to BirdNote’s Weekly Preview

Copyright © 2020 BirdNote, All rights reserved.

Attention: SIB Cancels All Events Until Further Notice

Out of concern for everyone’s health and safety, Seabrook Island Birders (SIB) has decided to cancel all events until further notice.  We realize that as much as we would love to be with everyone talking about the birds on our island, we don’t feel we can safely maintain social distance while viewing and discussing the birds.

We encourage everyone to follow the guidance from the CDC. Only if appropriate, we encourage you to enjoy the outside spaces like the beach and nature walks for birding and nature watching.  

We will work on providing blogs that will give you ideas of activities that you, your children and grandchildren can do in a safe and responsible manner.

Thanks for your understanding and be well.

USC Students to Study Red Knots on Seabrook and Kiawah Beaches

Sara Padula and Jenny Linscott counting red knots and finding flags.

Seabrook and Kiawah Islands will be hosting University of South Carolina (USC) graduate and undergraduate students for the next few months. These students are studying the Red Knots as they use our beaches as a stopover during their long spring migration. The students will be on the beach two days weekly from March through May, mostly likely on Friday and Saturday. As students survey the beach, you may recognize them by their bright yellow vests, tripods and scopes. If you find them looking through the scopes, it is important not to approach them or cross through their line of sight as looking for flags requires concentration and patience.

Luckily, the Seabrook Island Birders new Shorebird Steward Program began last Friday, March 6th. The goal of this new program is to have someone on the beach four hours a day with information, binoculars, and a birding scope for anyone who is interested in observing and learning more about our shorebirds. We will also have a Shorebird Steward accompany the USC student(s) as an intermediary in the event visiting beach goers are curious about their research project. 

Objectives of the USC Red Knot Project: 

During their annual migrations, rufa Red Knots depend on stopover sites along the Atlantic coast of the U.S to rest and refuel. In the past, most research concerning Red Knots has concentrated on Delaware Bay, which may host 50-80% of the Red Knot population. However, observations and counts by SCDNR and other colleagues in the region suggest that the coast of South Carolina, specifically Seabrook and Kiawah Islands, are of great importance for knots. The research will quantify the knots use of the area during spring migration. 

The objectives of the study are: 

  • Conduct weekly resighting efforts from Feb-May 2020 to identify individually marked Red Knots along the coast of Seabrook and Kiawah Island, SC. Resighting is an activity where an observer, using a high powered spotting scope or by photography, reads identification codes on the colored bands previously placed on the legs of Red Knots by researchers. It is a tough job to read tags on moving Red Knots!
  • Obtain robust estimates of the proportion of the rufa Red Knot population utilizing the study area and total stopover duration using  a research technique called mark-recapture sampling. This method statistically compares data obtained from banded birds to the number of unbanded birds to make an estimate of the total population and how long they stay.
  • Train two undergraduate students from the University of South Carolina (USC) to contribute to field work and data analyses. 
  • Support SCDNR shorebird conservation efforts through the provision of robust data. 

Lodging Needed

To allow the students to spend more of their limited time closer to the beach, the program would like to find lodging on Friday nights for the students. If anyone on Seabrook Island would be interested in providing a room for a student one weekend during the next few months it would be a tremendous help to them. If interested please fill out this form and someone will contact you within a few days.  

If you want to learn more about the students and their research please visit their university’s website: http://www.sennerlab.com/people.html 

Thank you to everyone for your support of this important study.

Sara Padula and Cameron Wise. Undergraduate students from the University of South Carolina.