If you've never heard of "birding" then you might not know exactly what it is, but rest assured many of your fellow New Jerseyans have.

It used to be called bird watching, but that had a bad and older fogey connotation. So like many other dated terms, it needed updating. The official definition is the identification and observation of wild birds in their natural habitat as a recreation; birdwatching.

Recently some visitors from Iowa were jealous about how great birding is in our wonderful state. Who knew? One particular spot in New Jersey, Cape May, is listed as one of the top birding spots in the country. Read the Lonely Planet article here.

Photo by Forest Simon on Unsplash
Photo by Forest Simon on Unsplash
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People actually travel from all over the United States, and in some cases other countries, to check out the avian creatures above the skies of Cape May, New Jersey.

If you have a good pair of binoculars or a really good camera with a long-distance lens, you apparently are missing out.

One birding expert, Jason Ward, is quoted in the Lonely Planet article as saying, "It's a traffic jam of birds." Whether you're watching warblers from the Cape May Migratory Bird Refuge or raptors along Higbee Beach, Ward says you can "look at any point in the sky, and 15-20 birds are trying to figure out the next leg in their journey."

Photo by Athanasios Papazacharias on Unsplash
Photo by Athanasios Papazacharias on Unsplash
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If you're interested in a new hobby, not a sport, you might want to check out the New Jersey Audubon Society and pick up some tips on what to look for and where to look.

When you live in a place all your life you tend to take for granted what you have right under your nose, or right over your head in this case. It's probably not for everybody, but everybody in New Jersey could use a little more fresh air now and then.

Opinions expressed in the post above are those of New Jersey 101.5 talk show host Dennis Malloy only.

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