Bird watching is an excellent senior activity! Birds are readily available year round and birding can take place anywhere at anytime. No special equipment is necessary and aging parents can participate from a beginning to advanced level.
Bird watching is the perfect activity for older ones because it offers so much flexibility. You can keep things simple by bird watching in your backyard or local park, or you can be more adventurous and travel to a meadow, nature preserve, or bird sanctuary. In Houston, the Houston Aboretum is a perfect location to begin an afternoon of birdwatching.
Bird watching also can be combined with other activities. Since you’re already outdoors, you can easily turn your bird watching day into a picnic day as well. If you’re in a park or nature preserve, other family members, including children, might want to come and play or hike. Lakes and waterways offer good bird watching sites as well, so if your aging parents decide they want to dry off for a while, they can spend their “on shore” time spotting feathered friends.
It can be social or solo
You can also decide whether to go bird watching alone or with company. Solitary bird watching can be a peaceful, relaxing activity that helps to relieve stress and anxiety. On the other hand, joining an actual bird watching group can open up new opportunities for social interaction and the development of new friendships.
Your aging parents and their grandchildren can also bond together over bird watching. While many young children may not have the patience to watch for extended periods of time, most enjoy at least short excursions and can get very excited over successfully spotting a particularly pretty specimen. Many children also will be happy to participate by helping Grandma or Grandpa look up information about birds online or by assisting their grandparents with a bird scrapbook.
Bird watching also can be an inexpensive form of entertainment. A pair of binoculars and a notebook for keeping track of birds are recommended. There are many other accessories and options that you might want to consider, but the binoculars and notebook are really the only necessities.
Summer never seems to last long enough. Bird watching is a fine way to take advantage of the warm weather while you have the chance.