On Not Being a Birder

I heard recently that the average American can identify over 100 corporate logos, but only about ten plants. That’s a shame.

I suppose I have a pretty good working knowledge of the natural world. I can certainly identify a good deal more than ten plants. But by no means is my knowledge encyclopedic. I still have plenty to learn and I’m regularly reminded of my ignorance.

Take birds, for example. Despite being a nature lover, and despite being outside and in contact with birds every day, my ability to identify them is limited. I suppose that when it comes to birds, I’m probably smarter than the average bear. But at the same time, I’m deeply ignorant. To me, all little brown birds have always been chickadees, for example. While┬áI admire birders, I’m not one of them.

But at least I’m not content to remain in my ignorance. I hope to never stop learning new things. And improving my knowledge of birds is one of the many things on my list.