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Relative prevalence of African Americans among bird watchers

Author(s):

John C. Robinson

Year:

2005

Publication type:

General Technical Report (GTR)

Primary Station(s):

Pacific Southwest Research Station

Source:

In: Ralph, C. John; Rich, Terrell D., editors 2005. Bird Conservation Implementation and Integration in the Americas: Proceedings of the Third International Partners in Flight Conference. 2002 March 20-24; Asilomar, California, Volume 2 Gen. Tech. Rep. PSW-GTR-191. Albany, CA: U.S. Dept. of Agriculture, Forest Service, Pacific Southwest Research Station: p. 1286-1296

Description

The demographics of bird watchers have recently become a topic of increased interest. Race or nationality is one demographic parameter that has been discussed in some depth. This paper further quantifies the relative prevalence of African Americans among U.S. bird watchers and identifies potential barriers that may prevent African Americans from becoming bird watchers. Two questionnaires (one for bird watchers and one for African Americans) were developed and distributed from August 2000 to June 2001. One-third of the 322 respondents to the bird watching questionnaire had never met an African American bird watcher. Results indicate that the average bird watcher will meet no more than two or three African- American bird watchers over a 20-year period. The two greatest barriers to becoming a bird watcher identified by African Americans were "No interest in birds" and "No friends to teach me how to study birds." Only ten (27 percent) of the 37 African Americans who identified themselves as non-bird watchers had ever met someone who was a bird watcher, and two-thirds of all African Americans responding to the questionnaire had never met a bird watcher. The results of this study were compared with demographic data collected through the National Survey on Recreation and the Environment and with U.S. Census Bureau population growth projections. The proportion of African Americans who participate in bird watching is smaller than the proportion of African Americans in the U.S. population. The importance of these findings in light of our society's increasing cultural diversity is highlighted. Recommendations are provided for future studies on this topic.

Citation

Robinson, John C. 2005. Relative prevalence of African Americans among bird watchers. In: Ralph, C. John; Rich, Terrell D., editors 2005. Bird Conservation Implementation and Integration in the Americas: Proceedings of the Third International Partners in Flight Conference. 2002 March 20-24; Asilomar, California, Volume 2 Gen. Tech. Rep. PSW-GTR-191. Albany, CA: U.S. Dept. of Agriculture, Forest Service, Pacific Southwest Research Station: p. 1286-1296

Publication Notes

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https://www.fs.usda.gov/treesearch/pubs/32150