Travelling Birds Generate Eco-travellers: the Economic Potential of Vagrant Birdwatching
Ecotourism is a growing field, and birdwatching (avitourism) is gaining popularity quickly and potentially generating a significant increases in local income at birdwatching sites. Understanding the patterns and practices of birdwatchers' travel is critical to understanding the economic value revolving around bird festivals, migrations events, and well-known birdwatching sites. For example, some birdwatchers actively seek vagrant birds (birds outside their home geographic area), and the economic value from these unpredictable and transient birdwatching activities is not well known. In this paper, we examine how a vagrant black-backed Oriole in Pennsylvania stimulated travel activity and use a travel cost method in a readily quatifiable environment to track the overall value.