About 85 million Americans regularly observe, photograph or feed wild birds, and birding now ranks as the 15th most popular outdoor activity, according to the USDA's National Survey on Recreation and the Environment.
While 18 million Americans are serious enough birders to take annual trips to count bird species, you don't have to be an expert to enjoy watching our feathered friends.
But if you want to become one, there's the Cornell Lab's All About Bird Biology website.
The online resource became available to the public in early March and incorporates videos, scientific articles and a variety of self-paced interactive features.
The educational website expands on Cornell's popular AllAboutBirds.org — which includes an online bird guide, links to bird webcams and tips for birdwatchers — by delving deeper into bird biology.
Mya Thompson, e-learning specialist and project leader at All About Bird Biology, says one of the highlights of the site will be its multimedia features that take an in-depth look at topics like feathers, birdsong and flight.
"The self-paced interactive features are designed for learners who want to explore bird life by interacting with custom illustrations, animations and videos. We kicked things off with All About Feathers and will be releasing new topics regularly."
In addition to these interactive items, All About Bird Biology also has downloadable illustrations and animations and an extensive video library that includes more than 25 videos of colorful birds-of-paradise.