Compact Binoculars: Do They Really Fit in Your Pocket?

If you’re going to call an item compact, it had better fit in my pocket – at least, in most cases. Maybe a compact car doesn’t have to, but the best compact binoculars sure should.

There are probably dozens of binoculars that are called compact on the market today. Let’s take a look at a few of those high end compact binoculars to see if the literally measure up to the name compact binoculars. Continue reading “Compact Binoculars: Do They Really Fit in Your Pocket?”

Ultimate Birding in Michigan: A Good Place to Be Outdoors

Over the past several years, Michigan’s tourism department has advertised the state as a good place for outdoor activities. Birding in Michigan should be counted amongst those pursuits then.

Robin
Robin – Michigan State Bird

In addition to the golfing, swimming, hiking, etc., bird watching in Michigan is also a very worthwhile venture for birders.

Here we’ll look at some of the more popular places to find birds in Michigan. Continue reading “Ultimate Birding in Michigan: A Good Place to Be Outdoors”

6+ Reasons You’ll Want a Pair of Swarovski EL 8.5×42 Binoculars

I can still remember the first time I heard that Swarovski made optics like the Swarovski EL 8.5×42 binoculars. I thought, “You mean that company that makes the fancy crystals makes binoculars too?”

Yes. Yes, it does.

Perhaps you think of Swarovski crystals first when you hear the company’s name, but now you should also think of binoculars because Swarovski is considered one of the top three (along with Zeiss and Leica) optics manufacturers in the world. Continue reading “6+ Reasons You’ll Want a Pair of Swarovski EL 8.5×42 Binoculars”

Ultimate Birding in Illinois: More Birds Than Soybeans?

A while back I had the opportunity to drive a couple of hours through the Illinois countryside. I wasn’t doing any birding in Illinois on this trip, but I did pay attention to the land – the crops, in particular – as I traveled down the road, which was a state highway, not the interstate.

Northern Cardinal
Illinois State Bird: Northern Cardinal

Photo Credit

I saw, as expected, lots and lots of corn in the fields. I also noticed that, besides the corn, there seemed to be only one other crop that almost every farmer grew. Continue reading “Ultimate Birding in Illinois: More Birds Than Soybeans?”

Ultimate Birding in Iowa: Do Corn and Birds Mix?

When you think of Iowa, you think of corn. And for the most part, that’s a realistic thought. However, there’s more to the state of Iowa than just cattle feed. There are hundreds of species of birds there too which makes birding in Iowa just as much fun as anywhere else.

American Goldfinch - Iowa State Bird
American Goldfinch – Iowa State Bird

Photo Credit Continue reading “Ultimate Birding in Iowa: Do Corn and Birds Mix?”

Bushnell Binoculars: Are the Elite Also Top of the Line?

Did you ever own a pair of Bausch and Lomb binoculars? The Elite models they used to make aren’t the same as those in the Bushnell binoculars Elite series, but there is a relationship between the two companies.

Bushnell acquired the rights to producing Bausch and Lomb binoculars decades ago. They continued to make them until the early 1990s. Now Bushnell binoculars makes its own Elite models which are what we’ll look at here.

Bushnell Elite 10×42

Continue reading “Bushnell Binoculars: Are the Elite Also Top of the Line?”

Ultimate Birding in Minnesota: 10,000 Lakes and Birds?

You know Minnesota as the land of 10,000 lakes, but birding in Minnesota is just as popular as the lakes.

Bird watching in Minnesota is something you can do in virtually every part of the state. Birders more often do their thing in the open countryside or in the forests, but you may have to wander into the cities to find some species.

Common Loon
Minnesota State Bird: Common Loon

Photo Credit

This article is your ultimate guide to birding in Minnesota. It includes dozens of links to the most common, as well as a few uncommon, birding sites throughout the state. Continue reading “Ultimate Birding in Minnesota: 10,000 Lakes and Birds?”

The Galileo Telescope: What’s the Big Deal?

GalileoMany people think that Galileo invented the telescope. Maybe you do too. If so, I hate to burst your bubble, but the Galileo telescope was not the first one ever made.

Why then does Galileo get so much attention related to the telescope? Who did invent it and when? Do we still have the original telescopes?

Read on and I’ll tell you a little of what we know. Continue reading “The Galileo Telescope: What’s the Big Deal?”

Ultimate Birding in Wisconsin: With Cheese and Beer?

This is the first of what I hope will be 50 articles on birding in each state of the United States. I’m starting with birding in Wisconsin because it’s my home state. I’ve lived here all my life except for a handful of years in Nebraska.

Robin
Wisconsin’s state bird, the robin

Photo Credit

To many people, Wisconsin is primarily known for cheese (also cheeseheads) and beer. (There’s at least one tavern in virtually every town, large and small.) Wisconsin is also known as the Dairy State.

It may come as a surprise to you then that Wisconsin is also a wonderful state for birding. There are hundreds of species located there. Some, such as cranes, even have a special place that you can read about below. Continue reading “Ultimate Birding in Wisconsin: With Cheese and Beer?”