Re: Taping bird calls and spotlighting.

Subject: Re: Taping bird calls and spotlighting.
From: Russell Woodford <>
Date: Thu, 20 Nov 1997 16:19:29 +1000 (EST)
I endorse Frank's response as strongly as possible.

Through Phil's work we now know a lot more about the  Plainswanderer and
how best (we hope) to aid its survival.

I recently went on one of Phil's night trips and was impressed by the way
he held the birds' interests paramount (i.e. above the interests of us,
the visitors). They are very difficult critters to find.  I suppose in one
way there are fewer places to find them as there are fewer areas with
suitable native grasses - but of course that only means fewer PWs.  They
seem to be balancing on the proverbial edge.

The idea of them being run-over is also a bit far-fatched.  Maybe it has
happened once - but how many of us have never hit something unusual?
Anyway, the PWs, Quail and BQs are so thin on the ground out there that
you could drive around in a steamroller without doing them any harm (but
don't try this because we do want to hang onto our remnant grasslands for
a bit longer....)

Fortunately, most of us are responsible and reasonable.  Few birders would
use a tape or spotlight if they knew that doing so would distress or
endanger an individual bird.  Similarly, few would go thrashing around in
wetlands or reedbeds trying to unearth a bird INSTEAD of using a tape.
OK - so there are a few loonies who will stop at nothing to tick a
species, but I'm sure most of us have a real sense of what's fair and
what's not.  So we don't really need to get too worked up at each other on
this issue, do we?  Save it for when we find someone being totally
irresponsible - or for those who don't give a damn about our environment.
There are plenty of THEM ... :-(

Russell Woodford

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