Spring is finally on its way and with it, the promise of returning migratory birds to the United States and Canada. Among the first to arrive every year, and beloved among birders and non-birders alike, is North America’s largest swallow, the Purple Martin. With their chatty and gregarious nature martins have inspired so many people, one of whom is Dr. Kevin Fraser of the Avian Behavior and Conservation Lab at the University of Manitoba in Winnipeg. A migration ecologist with a particularly interest in neotropical migrants, Kevin has worked with Purple Martins for years, and he joins me to talk about the uncommon lives of these common birds.

Also, congratulations to the ABA’s 2019 Young Birders of the Year, don’t forget to help the ABA-Leica Subadult Wheatears, and some thoughts on Old Media, New Media, and learning about birds.

Thanks to Zeiss Sports Optics for sponsoring this episode of the American Birding Podcast!

The American Birding Podcast brings together staff and friends of the American Birding Association as we talk about birds, birding, travel and conservation in North America and beyond.

Join host Nate Swick every other Thursday for news and happenings, recent rarities, guests from around the birding world, and features of interest to every birder.