We hear it every day in other facets of our lives, slang terms used by folks from all different walks of life. From marketing professionals to farmers to sports enthusiasts, each group of people or professionals seem to have their own quirky words or statements to identify with certain situations, products or people.

Bird watching is no different as folks will often term their own sayings or nicknames for their favourite birds or activities. Over the years, we’ve heard our fair share and with a little research put together a fun, yet informative list of some of our favourites. If you have your own quirky nicknames or sayings, please leave them in the comments below, we’d love to hear them!


Sum PlumSummer Plumage

BOPBird of Prey

BVDBetter View Desired. Often used to describe a situation where the view of the bird is well enough to identify, but not well enough to thoroughly enjoy.

Grip (or Grip Off)When a bird is observed by one birder, but not another. Oftentimes friendly bragging ensues.

Life ListA list compiled by a birder of species observed by said birder.

LiferThe initial observation of a species not yet on a birders Life List.

PatchA local bird watching location, often located close to your home.

Stringer A person with a reputation of knowingly misleading others about the presence of a rare bird.

TickThe act of adding a new bird species to one’s life list.

TwitchTo actively seek out a reported rare bird. Also known as Twitching or a Twitcher.

ZootieOften known as a locally rare or unusual bird.

Dip Out OnFailing to spot a particular bird, usually one you have gone out to Twitch.

Two-bird theoryA face-saving device. You see a bird and identify it as something rare. Someone else twitches it and re-identifies it as something very similar, but common. Rather than admit you got it wrong, you resolutely maintain you were right and that there were actually two birds present: the rare one and the common one.

Camera dancera particularly obliging bird, photographically.


Comments (0)

Please note, comments must be approved before they are published.