Date: 1/11/21 2:27 pm
From: Carol Foss <cfoss...>
Subject: RE: [NHBirds] Concerns expressed over Gorham Hotspot
I would also strongly suggest that birders NOT wear camouflage clothing when birding in developed areas, given current tensions. One thing when out on trails and trying to blend in with the forest, but not particularly effective and definitely attention-getting in urban and suburban habitats.
Carol

-----Original Message-----
From: <nhbirds...> [mailto:<nhbirds...>] On Behalf Of David Govatski
Sent: Monday, January 11, 2021 5:23 PM
To: <nhbirds...>
Subject: [NHBirds] Concerns expressed over Gorham Hotspot

Hi Everyone:
A Gorham resident sent me an email expressing concern about an eBird Hotspot on Mechanic Street in Gorham. This location is a good place to see Bohemian Waxwings at this time of year. Fortunately it was not a concern over bad behavior, but instead a concern over who these people (birders) were. I asked Rebecca Suomala and Steve Mirick for advice and they suggested I post this message because the Gorham concern is something that may be occurring elsewhere.

This is an extract of the concern. “Yesterday a neighbor saw some folks in camo with long lens cameras, walking down the street. They were birders looking for waxwings, red belly woodpeckers, etc. But the neighbor did not know them or that they were birders.

She had seen some truck with political flags racing up and down Main Street last Wednesday and put two and two together. So she called police who came and chatted with the birders. So it’s probably wise to post something on eBird and let birders know they should identify as birders and be a bit cautious about getting neighbors worried.”

My impression is that local residents don’t know how these waxwings and others birds are of such interest to birders. So if you see a resident just explain that you are looking for rare birds to reassure them. There is parking on Main Street too. Just glad that this is not a bad behavior issue and instead a perception issue to non-birders. I will see if we can let the local paper know about the birds and birders and that will help too. Birders are good for business is a positive thing. Thanks everyone for reading this. Reply to me offline if you have any questions or suggestions.

David Govatski
Jefferson, NH

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