Rebecca Bowater’s Transformation to Birding

GreatBirdPics member Rebecca Bowater (user name Rebecca) is a naturalist in New Zealand.  Although a relatively new member, she has shared 158 beautiful bird pictures, all from New Zealand and Australia!  I found her story of how she expanded her study of plants to include birds to be fascinating.  Rebecca shares her story below:

How did I become interested in birds?

I was brought up with the love of NZ (New Zealand) flora, from my father who was a botanist. In the year 2000 I commenced my photography of NZ flora focusing on NZ alpine flora and this led into photographing fungi in all shapes and sizes.

In 2008 I was diagnosed with lymphoma; that year I could only look out to the mountains as I was too sick to climb them. I really missed getting up to the alpine zone. I was praying and asking the Lord what could I photograph from home. The answer was clear, as we live by the sea why don’t I sit on a rock and study the birds. I didn’t know a gull from a tern at that time. So that is what I did. I went down the road to the boulder bank and sat on a rock and worked out the different terns, gulls and saw my first godwit through someone’s scope. I often sent a photo to a friend to ID it for me.

I recovered from cancer and have learnt so much about birds over the last 12 years and am now hooked! Who would have ever thought that I would become a birder? My photography is totally nature in all aspects and I love it. My flickr website is | Photographs of NZ Alpine plants, Birds and Fungi

Thanks Rebecca for your touching story.  She was too modest to mention it but she has published two books, which have limited availability in the U.S.  They are New Zealand Fungi  and New Zealand Alpine Flora.

You can see all of Rebecca’s GreatBirdPics images HERE.

If you would like to share your story about becoming a birder I would love to hear it.  You can email it to me at

If you’re new to GreatBirdPics you can learn more about the site HERE.  If you would like to share your bird pictures with the world, receive regular emails about bird photography, or just enjoy viewing bird pictures you can join GreatBirdPics HERE.

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