On his blog, BirdsConTour writes that starting them off young, will be to the benefit of birdlife in the country and elsewhere.
“We cannot effectively conserve birds in the long term if we don’t have young people to continue our work in the next generations”, he writes.
The club kicked off six months ago when Rust realised that it is important to create awareness around the conservation of birds while the children were still young. Secondly, the club offers children a chance to get outdoors.
Children of all ages, even teenagers, are able to join the club. The excursions are based around a fun and relaxing outing. Chaperoned by an adult, the kids are taken out for an hour or two. Various excursion options are available.
The children are taught how to build nests and feeders, or they visit lush gardens with a thriving birdlife, where they observe and identify the birds. Otherwise, children are taken to wilderness areas, such as the Avis dam, where children can experience a genuine wilderness birding experience.
The kids are trained to mould their senses, by identifying birds with not only sight, but also sound..
Other projects include conservation efforts such as clearing bushes in overgrown areas, in order to establish bird friendly habitats.
There are cases, Rust explained, when a birding excursion can stretch over a weekend.
Rust is keen to spread the club around the country. He says that those interested to establish such a club in other areas will be assisted by the Young Birder club.
“Apart from getting into nature and developing a good sense and understanding of the ecology, involved children have good chances to build close contacts with conservation organisations, tourism organisations, farmers … basicaly any nature orientated occupation aspect giving them better chances for their future in finding jobs”.
The Young Birders club offers children the chance to find out where their interests.
Most importantly, Rust says that the club “children learn how to behave in nature and how to treat animals, wild birds in this case”.