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Sarah Swanson and Max Smith


Sarah Swanson and Max Smith have been birding together since they met in graduate school. They moved to Oregon in 2005, where Max worked as a biologist and Sarah did environmental education. During their free time, they traveled throughout Oregon and Washington, eventually incorporating what they learned about birding and bird biology into their first book, Must-see Birds of the Pacific Northwest. You can find Max and Sarah sharing their knowledge and enthusiasm about birds at presentations at bookstores, birding festivals, refuges, and garden clubs. They also lead bird walks and trips for Portland Audubon. Recently, Sarah and Max have discovered the fun of keeping bird lists for all of Oregon’s 36 counties. From the coast to the desert, they’ve gotten to know more about their state and its birds, both rarities and everyday species. To keep up with their birding adventures, follow Sarah and Max.

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Fast Facts

    • Sarah and Max’s book, Must-see Birds of the Pacific Northwest, was a regional best-seller and was featured by Powell’s Books.
    • Sarah and Max got married on a beach where they also did monthly beached birds counts for a citizen science project.
    • They’ve birded in all of Oregon’s 36 counties, and so has their dog, Andie.
    • Favorite birds? Max: Lewis’s Woodpecker, named for his favorite explorer. Sarah: Harlequin Duck, because it nests along rushing streams and spends the winter riding ocean swells.
Equipment Used
  • Sarah and Max use Celestron Granite ED binoculars and a Regal M2 80 Spotting Scope. They also use the Celestron phone/scope adapter to take bird photos and videos to share.

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