Exercise: Bird Watching Walk

cover of How to Do Nothing book

What are we doing?

Go on a bird watching walk.

Why are we doing it?

Bird watching builds skills in observation, and highlights chance encounters.

As Jenny Odell mentions in How to Do Nothing (2019), “Bird-watching is the opposite of looking something up online. You can’t really look for birds; you can’t make a bird come out and identify itself to you. The most you can do is walk quietly and wait until you hear something, and then stand motionless under a tree, using your animal senses to figure out where and what it is.” (page 8)

How are we doing it?

  1. Select a regionally appropriate beginner’s bird watching book or mobile app. Feel free to do further research.
  2. Identify at least three different birds while on your bird watching walk.
  3. Do not trespass on private property (be safe).
  4. While you were bird watching, what else (beyond birds) did you notice about the path of your walk through your slow looking process? Write down your observations to share with the group.