Date: 7/28/20 9:17 am
From: Sharon F. <sfinley111...>
Subject: Re: [Maine-birds] Nesting interference
I totally agree with Kristen and Craig; we are not entitled to do as we please on another's property. If nothing else common courtesy should be the unspoken default. More importantly is the long and short term effects on the bird/birds themselves. The few times when I have made a special trip to see a particular bird there always seems to be someone intent on getting closer or in some way intrusive in the bird's space. In particular the crowds around the Black Hawk a couple of years back were painful to see-who is to say that if left alone it might of had a better chance for survival. How can you say you love birds when you are most likely directly harming them with your actions? I am sorry to say that I would probably not report a special sighting in my area except to a select few; the folks that would come to my place were always respectful but what I have seen in the last few years dampens my enthusiasm for future sighting reports. Sharon in West Kennebunk

________________________________
From: <maine-birds...> <maine-birds...> on behalf of Craig Kesselheim <ckesselheim...>
Sent: Tuesday, July 28, 2020 11:39 AM
To: Kristen Lindquist <kelindquist...>
Cc: Maine Birds <maine-birds...>
Subject: Re: [Maine-birds] Nesting interference

What Kristen said! I am grateful for this part of Kristen's reply in particular: "What may be “well within my rights” is not always right."

Any persistent visitation to a nesting bird by multiple birders is by definition harassment. We are often put in the predicament, as birders, to choose how much harassment to inflict on the subjects of our passion. 'Less' should be our default decision.

Craig Kesselheim
SW Harbor



On Tue, Jul 28, 2020 at 9:12 AM Kristen Lindquist <kelindquist...><mailto:<kelindquist...>> wrote:
Forgive me, and maybe I’m way off base here—but regardless of your thoughts about private property, this may not be the best tactic to employ as a birder. What may be “well within my rights” is not always right. And nothing gives birders as a group a worse reputation than someone getting publicly called out for pissing off a home/landowner—which makes the next person who finds a rare bird on their property that much more likely to prohibit visitors. “But your land wasn’t posted” is not a viable excuse.

With reference to the Mississippi Kites in NH, these landowners DID express disapproval with people’s behavior. Did they have their lawns posted? Does that even matter? Someone “exercising their rights” and pissing someone off by chasing a bird through (unmarked) private property is only going to make it that much harder for the next birder(s) who comes along. Our property system here in ME generally works well for birders because most of us are guided not by signage (or lack thereof) but by respect for each other and a desire for continued access.

Kristen

On Tue, Jul 28, 2020 at 1:15 AM Thomas Foley <thomaspfoley5...><mailto:<thomaspfoley5...>> wrote:
You make an interesting point, but I never got the impression that the birds themselves were being negatively affected here (please correct me if I’m wrong). I want to make sure that all readers are aware that in both Maine and New Hampshire, private property THAT IS NOT POSTED AS PRIVATE PROPERTY may be freely used by anyone! Yes, it is best practice to get permission—please use your best judgment and don’t push it. However, you are well within your rights to bird on private property as long as there are no signs explicitly telling you not to.

As a twenty-something, all I can think is, “wow, it must be SO challenging to have private property to trespass upon.” I will probably never own land and simply can not sympathize with those who restrict the freedoms of others by making their stolen land inaccessible (and let’s be clear—birds nesting on private property are not private property themselves). We should all bird responsibly... we should also know our rights and exercise them.

Again, please let us all know if the birds themselves actually need more space. If the kites seem disturbed, let’s back off a little. If the homeowners specifically express disapproval of use of their property, let’s back off a little. But in general, fight the man, bird freely, and mark your private property if you genuinely take issue with others using it.

I am happy to further share my thoughts about the issue of private property access and land users’ rights. Feel free to retort by text or voice at (203) 209-9342 or at <thomaspfoley5...><mailto:<thomaspfoley5...>.

Tom Foley
avid birder, far left-winger, unabashed post-humanist

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