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Me oh my, what a crazy semester it has been. With finals here and my junior year ending right around the corner, what better time to reminisce than right now. Do not worry, I won’t be spouting my whole life in this blog post, but I will be talking about this little adventure called birding that I have experienced.

When I first walked into this class, I had no idea what I was getting myself into. There were only a select few things I knew about birds at the time. If only I knew what I was getting myself into at the start. I was just standing there during the first day of class intimated by the amount of time this class will need from me on top of doing an athletic sport. As time went on though, the routine of life started to kick in and the time constraint became easier. A fellow tip for anyone who wants to take this class in the future, time is a necessity in this course. It is not like other classes where it is possible to pass by barely doing anything. This class is a commitment. Be prepared for long field trips on weekends as well.

My first birding adventure was to a little nature reserve nearby called Jennings. Here is where I started to make friends with the fellow classmates. At Jennings it was cold and muddy, but the interesting thing is, when people go through any sort of hardship they form bonds. I started to easily become friends with my fellow tweetspeakers and the long three hour birding expeditions became easier.

Birding wise I had no idea what I was looking at. I knew the very popular birds like a Bald Eagle and Blue Jay, but I didn’t know any other bird. While we are the subject, the a

mount of different birds exist is insane! As of right now, there are roughly 10,000 different species of birds that are discovered. I knew about 7 walking in. Trying to find the birds was a mess as well. While out in the field there can be 8 different bird calls coming from every which way. Trying to find them at first was nightmare.

As time went on, yes, I personally struggled with the class. This is class that again, demands a time commitment which because of the sport I played, I couldn’t give. What kept me going through this class though was the new friends I made. What started as awkward greetings blossomed into a fun and joyful experience. We even have our own GroupMe where we post funny bird memes or anything that someone would laugh at.  We laughed every time we were in the same room and they made the class an unforgettable experience for me.

While this class and I had our differences it made me appreciate birds from a whole other perspective. My final advice is if it is possible to take this cluster, do it. It is not easy, time is needed to succeed in this class. While it was challenging, I had fun while doing it and made some stellar memories. I will remember this course very fondly because of the memories I made with my new friends. Goodbye birding, it sure has been one heck of a ride.

A Special Appreciation for the mission and work of the Bartramian Audubon Society

The 2017 Tweetspeak Cluster celebrated Earth Day in April with members of the Bartramian Audubon Society.  Students hosted members on a birding adventure around the campus, including the three Audubon-certified bird sanctuaries on campus.  Students in the previous edition of Tweetspeak secured those sanctuaries as a service learning project in 2016.
The Tweetspeak students and faculty support the Bartramian Audubon Society’s mission is to preserve the native plant and animal communities in our eco-region through monitoring and protecting vulnerable, rare, and endangered life forms.
Education, direct conservation efforts, research and active participation in citizen science support this mission.

The Bartramian Audubon Society is the chapter of the National Audubon Society serving, Butler, Lawrence, Mercer, and Vengango counties in Pennsylvania.
Find out more and get involved!  Follow the group on Facebook!
Bartramian Audubon Society
P.O. Box 315
Slippery Rock, PA 16057

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