Subject: Spotlighting
From: Susan Myers <>
Date: Tue, 04 Mar 1997 15:06:47 +1000
I think a few people are misconstruing the whole argument concerning
spotlights,guidelines and so on.Nobody is suggesting that
birding,spotlighting & other related activities be policed.The way I
interpret what is being suggested is that maybe the relevant clubs could
serve their members,especially beginners,by publishing some guidelines
as to how to watch birds in an ethical manner.Surely nobody on this list
would object to that?Nobody is trying to tell you what,when & how you
should pursue your obsession(well some people are it would seem,but you
can't take them seriously).But surely some lively discussion regarding
ethics,techniques & so on is one of the most benificial things we can
use this list for. The other point to make is that most of these
techniques if used sparingly & responsibly are valid tools.In Australia
the birding population is relatively small,so the birds are unlikely to
be harassed (apart from at a couple of popular spots).In the US they
apparently use owl calls in the middle of the day to attract smaller
birds,shouldn't we try to nip that sort thing in the bud as soon as
I myself have never encountered a petty bureaucrat in the bush enforcing
any regulations.You can pretty well do what you like,in my
experience.All the more reason why people like ourselves who give a toss
should be careful of not loving things to death!
Meanwhile,isn't it time to raise this list above the "Where to watch
Birds" level & get some more discussion of behaviour,taxonomy etc
happening.Although the "where to see that bird" part is good fun,I just
think that birding should be about more than collecting(as in stamps &
Susan Myers
ps. isn't this fun????Besides which if we're always nice to each other
we'll never accomplish anything!

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