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Ethical birding: 6 ways to do no harm

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Searching for birds at Caw Caw Interpretive Center

Natural History Interpretation Specialist Kristina Wheeler spots birds during a morning bird walk at Caw Caw Interpretive Center Wednesday, Aug. 19, 2020, in Charleston. Grace Beahm Alford/Staff

Birding is among the nation’s most popular outdoor activities. Here are several guidelines by the American Birding Association and Audubon Society:

1. Avoid stressing birds or exposing them to danger by limiting the use of recordings to attract birds

2. Stay on trails to avoid disturbing nests and other bird habitat

3. Use a telephoto lens and maintain enough distance so birds can behave naturally.

4. Never advance on birds to make them fly. If your approach causes a bird to flush, you’re too close.

5. Avoid using camera flashes.

6. Remove GPS data from photographs of endangered birds to prevent a rush to that site.

Reach Tony Bartelme at 843-937-5554. Follow him on Twitter @tbartelme.

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