shalt have no other interest before birding. If thou does, thou shalt not
discuss it with other birders.
2. Thou shalt
not take unto thee any graven image of the birds that are in heaven
above without giving photo credit to the
photographer. Thou shalt not capture and cage the wild birds, nor shalt
thou visit birds in zoos (unless the birds are endangered and part of a
breeding release program), nor shalt thou respect and cherish any introduced
3. Thou shalt
not take the name of the Lord thy God in vain: not when thou just
missed seeing that rare bird, nor when
the potential life bird doth not sit still for an identification, nor when
thou droppeth thy binoculars in the middle of the lake.
all thy birding days, and keep them special. Six days shalt thou
labour and do all thy work: but the seventh
day is to renew thy spirit with the avian flock. Work is the curse of the
those who introduced thee to birding and taught thee about birds that
thy days may be long upon the land which
the Lord thy God giveth thee. If thou should dishonour those experts, thy
days may be short. Honour those who own the private property where birds
congregate that they may allow thee to come back the next time.
6. Thou shalt
not kill any bird (nor any bird hunters - no matter how strong the
provocation). Thou shalt labour to protect
and keep them for all the days of thy life (well, maybe not the hunters...).
7. Thou shalt
not take any thing that belongs to another birder without asking:
not his place in the hide, nor his field
guide, nor his birding partner, nor his lunch.
8. Thou shalt
not steal a bird's eggs or, more importantly, a bird's habitat if thou
wish to see the bird long on this earth.
9. Thou shalt
not bear false witness about birds thou hast identified or heard,
nor shalt thou exaggerate or brag about
birds thou hast seen. Thy word is thy bond, especially on Birding Big Days.
10. Thou shalt not covet
thy neighbour's life list, but must create thine own. Thou shalt
not covet thy neighbour's birding scope,
nor his identification skills, nor his bird photography ability, nor his
ability to travel to see more birds than thou, nor any other thing that
is thy birder neighbour's.
commandments, and keep them holy, in the name of the Father (John James
Audubon), and the Son (Roger Tory Peterson) and the Holy Ghost (Charles
Please, if I have
misunderstood or mistranslated the explicit and implicit instructions I
have received over the years from other birders, for heaven's sakes, let