publicity/appeal to young birders (longish)

Subject: publicity/appeal to young birders (longish)
Date: Thu, 16 Nov 2000 17:43:09 EST
I have several thoughts on the question posed by Jim Davis -- why should we
recruit young birders.  It seems to me that there are many reasons to do so.  
Perhaps the most compelling are, in no particular order, the following:

      1.  The possibility that the lives of others will be enriched by
becoming birders, or at least given the opportunity to do so.  This may be
the sort of thing that at least for some people requires a bit of enticement
to choose over say TV or footie, but that once entrenched offers something of

      2.  Getting people interested in birding will in time make them
interested in, and supporters of, conservation, both for birds and other
aspects of the natural world.  If that is of interest to you, then it is
obviously valuable to recruit young birders in the hope that they will one
day be staunch supporters of the natural world.  who knows, one of them may
even become prime minister or president.

      3.  To the extent that birders make other contributions, such as to
ornithology and science in general, then recruiting new birders furthers that
purpose as well.  Who will do the breeding and christmas bird counts in the

      There is of course the possibility that the main motivating factor is
that we all think that others ought to like what we like.  

Eric Jeffrey
Falls Church, VA
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