Back before I discovered the pleasures of birding, I used to hike. The Core Team loved nothing more than embarking on wilderness excursions of five, six, or even nine miles at a time when the mood struck us. Nearly every weekend, we would seek out another thrilling trail in the New York Metro region or beyond. Over mountains, through forests, along lakes and rivers, anywhere we could immerse ourselves in deep nature, that’s where you’d find us.

Once we became birders, however, our hikes predictably dwindled to walks.

Walking is good. Walking is exercise. Some studies show that walking is better for your health than running. Hiking can carry you to phenomenal vistas, but walking allows you to better heed your surroundings on the way there. I miss hiking without a doubt. We look forward to getting back on the trail, forgetting all about birds, and just putting the miles behind us like we once did. But when I want to really savor the sights and sounds of a rich ecosystem, nothing beats a nice, leisurely walk.

One class of walks that interests me immensely is Thomasburg Walks. Thomasburg is a small hamlet in the Municipality of Tweed in eastern Ontario. Almost every day, Pamela Martin takes the same walk through this territory to see who’s been by and try to figure out what they’ve been up to. Pamela has a keen eye for the flora and fauna of her beloved fields, swamps, cedar bush, apple orchards, and woods, with a particular emphasis on avifauna. Thanks to her deft style and unabashed delight in nature, Pamela’s wonderful blog is the next best thing to a walk through her beloved Thomasburg. We are very fortunate indeed that she is also able to walk us through exceptional bird writing from four continents as the host of I and the Bird #10.

What have you seen while you’ve been out walking? If you had a meaningful encounter with avifauna, you should really share your observations with the readers of I and the Bird. Submit a link to your favorite wild bird related blog post along with a brief summary and “I and the Bird” in the e-mail header to me or our next host, Clare of The House & other Arctic Musings. The next I and the Bird will be presented on Wednesday, November 23 (a little early for Thanksgiving) so the deadline for submissions is EARLY Tuesday, November 22.

Written by Mike
Mike is a leading authority in the field of standardized test preparation, but he's also a traveler who fully expects to see every bird in the world. Besides founding 10,000 Birds in 2003, Mike has also created a number of other entertaining but now extirpated nature blog resources, particularly the Nature Blog Network and I and the Bird.