Don Torino's latest column for wildnewjersey.tv is about the relationship between birding and nature, and worth a read...
Here's the beginning:
"So call me a worrywart, some days I worry that I may have forgotten to turn off the coffee pot before leaving the house.
"On occasion, I am deeply concerned that I have never actually seen a toad sit on a toad stool, but lately I have been feeling a deep uneasiness that many new birders; especially our younger ones are not enjoying our birds like they could be and might be missing out on the real passion of birding.
"One of the many wonderful things about birding is that there is no right way to enjoy it, you can travel the world or never leave your backyard. You can have a life list that spans all seven continents or not keep a list at all.
"The most important thing is that no matter what kind of birder you call yourself is that you enjoy the birds and become part of our natural world."
The link is here.