1. Mindful of Wildlife

How aware are you of the "bird" in birding? The ethical guidelines presented here focus on increasing awareness of the needs of birds and on minimizing disturbance to wildlife.

 a. Putting the Birds First

“The birds’ welfare is the highest priority.” (Mountain Bird Festival, accessed 2014)

b. Awareness of the Lives and Needs of Birds

“Disturbance can keep birds from their nests, leaving chicks hungry or enabling predators to take eggs or young.” (British Bird Lovers, accessed 2014)
“Migrants may be tired and hungry and should not be kept from resting or feeding.” (Ontario Field Ornithologists, accessed 2014)

c. Noticing Bird Behavior

“If you are approaching birds, and they adopt an upright alarmed posture, it is time to stop and allow them to settle back down.” (Sibley’s Birding Basics, accessed 2014)
“Do not harass birds by flushing.” (Mountain Bird Festival, accessed 2014)

d. Dress, Posture, and Lessening Your Impact

“In no-hunt areas, blend in with your surroundings. Wear neutral-colored clothing…” (Indiana Dunes Birding, accessed 2014)
“Keep movements slow and steady rather than fast or sporadic.” (Great Florida Birding & Wildlife Trail, accessed 2014)
“No approaching nests, roosts, and display areas.” (Mangalajodi Eco Tourism, accessed 2014)
“Share your lunch only with other humans.” (Indiana Dunes Birding, accessed 2014)

e. Use of Audio Playback, Laser Pointers, Pishing, etc.

“Refrain from using audio playback.” (Mountain Bird Festival, accessed 2014)

f. Handling Wildlife

“Birds, nests, or eggs must not be handled except for recognized research.” (Malaysian Nature Society Bird Conservation Council, accessed 2014)

g. Photography

“Refrain from using flash when photographing birds.” (Mountain Bird Festival, accessed 2014)
“When photographing birds, study their reaction and if they become agitated, back off.” (Ontario Field Ornithologists, accessed 2014)