Birding Online: June 2015

99-01 front coverWelcome to Birding Online, where ABA members go for complete access to all the content in the current issue and all recent issues of Birding magazine. For the entire June 2015 issue, click here:

“Open” the magazine by pressing the right arrow, and “flip” through the pages just as you would a “real” magazine. And for access to all recent issues, click here:

Browse the covers, choose an interesting one, open it up, and start reading.




99-02 milestonesOne of most beloved features in Birding is “Milestones,” where ABA members reminisce about recent listing and other birding achievements. Please consider submitting your milestone to Editor Ted Floyd (tfloyd “at” ABA “dot” org). In the subject line, please clearly indicate that you are submitting a milestone. Write your milestone in the third person, and include all the “vital statistics”: who, when, where, and what. Please consider including a short anecdote (be brief!) and a photo of your special milestone bird.



Does Birding Need Rules At All? That’s the mildly provocative question that ABA President Jeffrey A. Gordon poses in “Birding Together” in the June issue. No question about it, birding has its “rules”–and birders tend to have especially strong feelings about rules that affect what birds you can, and cannot, count for your life lists. Case in point: “heard only” birds. Should you be allowed to count them? The official answer is yes, but many birders continue to resist that ruling, and Steve Howell wonders why in an essay in the June Birding. Then there’s the matter of counting birds of debatable provenance. Case in point: the Hooded Crane or Hooded Cranes that wandered the ABA Area earlier this decade. The ABA Checklist Committee has declined to add the Hooded Crane to the ABA Checklist, but John Kendall and coauthors, in a commentary in the June Birding, wonder if that judgment was in error.

What do you think? ABA members and friends are discussing the matter online, and your contributions are solicited. This is your chance to tell the world why heard-only birds should count (or not), why the Hooded Crane should count (or not), and so forth.

Several commentaries in the June 2015 Birding get at the question of "rules"--and whether birding needs rules at all. See text for links to the full online content of these articles.

Several commentaries in the June 2015 Birding get at the question of “rules”–and whether birding needs rules at all. See text for links to the full online content of these articles.


All the content in all the issues of Birding is available to current ABA members. Case in point: John Kricher’s charming and informative essay on Green Herons, plus the accompanying photo essay. The ABA also makes available to the general birding public limited content from certain issues of Birding–for example, the Green Heron essay and photo salon in the June 2015 issue. Feel free to let the world know about this one! Here’s an easy link to the public version of the article:

Could you do us a favor? When you promote this article (thank you!), could you also nudge folks in the direction of this webpage:


99-07 Kricher opening



99-08 jaeger photoFor all long as there’s been Birding magazine–heck, for as long as there’s been birding, period–birders have enjoyed ID quizzes. And for as long as there’s been Birding (and birding), birders have been alternately vexed and delighted by jaegers. Do you want to try your hand at identifying this jaeger? Then head on over to The ABA Blog, where conversation about the ID of this bird is still under way. Or just go straight to Tom Johnson’s analysis in Birding. Either way. Or, better, both.


Another mainstay in Birding magazine is book reviews. In this issue, Don Torino reviews Ernie Jardine’s Bird Song: Defined, Decoded, Described; Elwood D. Bracey reviews Paul Sweet’s Extraordinary Birds: Essays and Plates; and Rick Wright reviews two books, Chuck Robbins’ Birding Trails: Montana and Jon S. Greenlaw and coauthors’ Robertson and Woolfenden Florida Bird Species: An Annotated List. Book reviews in Birding are opinionated–and so they should be. Do you have opinions about the books reviewed here, or about the reviews themselves? Then please head on over to the ABA/Birding Book Reviews page of The ABA Blog.

Book Reviews - June online


Having trouble with any of the links above? If you’re an ABA member, please call our office toll-free (800-850-2473), and we’ll make sure you understand how to get quick and easy access to all the password-protected members-only content. If you’re not an ABA member, don’t just stand there. Do something! Join the ABA today! You’ll get access to all the online content, plus annual subscriptions to Birding and to Birder’s Guide, and all the other benefits of an ABA membership.