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An open conversation about the birds in your back yard and beyond

How to give your old binoculars a new life

Get new binoculars for Christmas? Want to put your old glass to good use?


Begin the New Year with a birding good deed. If you have used or new binoculars (or field guides) you can donate them for use in work important to North American birds, including birds in Minnesota. 


Many of our summer birds spend their non-breeding time in Latin America and the Caribbean. Study of those species on their wintering grounds is as important as similar work here. Equipment necessary for that work can be financially unavailable to the volunteers and researchers doing this work.


Here are comments about the value of  this program from two of our best known birders and guide-book authors. Quotes are taken from the web site of the American Birding Association, sponsor of this program.


“There are researchers, educators, and conservationists in Latin America and the Caribbean striving to protect birds and their habitats, but many are working without the most basic equipment, such as binoculars and field guides.


“The American Birding Association’s Birders’ Exchange program collects donated new and used equipment and distributes it to our colleagues working to conserve birds and their habitats throughout Latin America and the Caribbean.


“Birders’ Exchange is an inspired idea and a highly effective reality. It’s making a big difference throughout Latin America and the Caribbean. Anyone who cares about the future of birds and wildlife should support this program.”

— Kenn Kaufman, author of Birds of North America


“With Birders’ Exchange, the need for a good pair of binoculars won’t stand in the way of developing first-class ornithologists all over the world, and can only lead to increased information and appreciation of the birds and their habitats at the local level.”

— David Allen Sibley, author of The Sibley Guide to Birds


Using the USPS send equipment to:

American Birding Association

c/o Birders’ Exchange

P.O.Box 744

Delaware City, DE



For FED EX and UPS send to:

American Birding Association

c/o Birders’ Exchange

93 Clinton Street Suite ABA

Delaware City, DE 19706


Send your financial donation to:

American Birding Association

c/o Birders’ Exchange

P.O. Box 3070

Colorado Springs, CO



Bake something special for your chickadees

Birdie Corn Bread


Start with:

    •    Basic Corn Bread recipe or mix (any prepared mix is fine or a recipe from scratch works well also)


Then, add the following to corn bread batter:

    •    2 cups of ground dog/cat food

    •    1 cup peanut butter

    •    2 whole eggs (shell included)

    •    1/2 cup dried or fresh berries

    •    1/2 cup dried or fresh veggies (such as corn, peas, squash, spinach, carrot)

Optional Additions:

    •    Small jar of fruit or veggie baby food

    •    1 Tbsp spirulina

    •    1-2 Tbsp olive oil


Most recipes call for baking at 350 for 15-20 minutes, but please see your recipe or mix instructions for details.


From the U.S. Geologic Survey, Alaska Science Center (



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