Research has revealed that more of us, including a significant number of 25 – 34 year olds, enjoy watching birds and other wildlife in their natural environment in town and cities – in a movement that has been dubbed ‘urban birding.’
Retailers of wildlife cams have seen a huge increase in sales of photographic devices specifically designed to capture wildlife recently, with the trend attributed to urban birders gearing up for spring.
In a bid to get closer to nature we are also taking further steps to preserve and attract wildlife in to our local areas, by leaving out food and water in our gardens and outside spaces.
Celebrity urban birding fans include Elbow frontman Guy Garvey, TV presenter Alex Zane and Blur’s Damon Albarn, among many others. The movement has grown to such an extent that it will launch a dedicated event, the London Bird Festival, later this year.
Urban birding is even making waves in America, where LA’s hipster Ace Hotel is due to host a Birds and Booze event in May. Guests have been invited to bird spot from its trendy trooftop while sipping bird-inspired cocktails from the bar.
Mark Kelly, a leading laptop retailer said: “It’s amazing to see how this traditional past-time is being revived by a new generation, for the 21st century.
“Once upon a time, a bird watcher’s essential tool kit included waterproofs, binoculars and an analogue camera. But now, thanks to a new wave of outdoor technology, urban birders can use things like automatic wildlife cameras to capture the birds in their garden 24/7, while they’re out at work, and to even get amazing airborne shots using drones. This new wave of technology seems to be re-igniting an interest in nature.“
Affordable tech is now paving the way for a new generation of urban birders, who are in turn helping to make twitching cool again.