Author: Lisa A. White
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Release Date: 2017-03-14
Avid North American birders share wit, wisdom, advice, and what fuels their passion for birds. Birding gets you outside, helps you de-stress, exercises your body and mind, puts your day-to-day problems in perspective, and can be lots of fun. Birders know this, and in this collection of thirty-seven brief essays, birders from diverse backgrounds share their sense of wonder, joy, and purpose about their passion (and sometimes obsession). From the Pacific Ocean to Central Park, from the rainforest in Panama to suburban backyards-no matter what their habitat, what good birders have in common is a curiosity about the natural world and a desire to share it with others. In these delightful essays, each accompanied by an endearing drawing, devoted birders reveal their passion to be fulfilling, joyful, exhilarating, and maybe even contagious. Contributors include many well-known birders, such as Richard Crossley, Pete Dunne, Kenn Kaufman, Michael O'Brien, Bill Thompson, and Julie Zickefoose. A portion of the proceeds goes to the American Birding Association, North America's largest membership organization for active birders.
David Sibley, Don and Lillian Stokes, and many more share their inside tips—and witty observations—on the birding life. The biggest names in birding dispense advice to birders of every level—on topics ranging from feeding birds and cleaning binoculars to pishing and pelagic birding—in these lighthearted essays accompanied by illustrations. Whether satirizing bird snobs or relating the traditions and taboos of the birding culture, this collection of wisdom is as chock-full of helpful information as it is entertaining. “The book is a delight to read and will generate new enthusiasm for the hobby. The 25 black-and-white line drawings are hilarious.” —Booklist
Bird watching is one of the most popular hobbies in America, and 1,001 Secrets Every Bird Watcher Should Know is the first photographic guide and fact book written in a humorous conversational tone that appeals to every age and skill level. Replete with sound information, 1,001 Secrets will expose many birding myths: a bald eagle cannot carry off a four-month old baby, and crows do not go sledding for fun. This accessible guide includes fun facts, such as where certain birds got their names, how birds eat, how they find a life partner, and how they build a home for the chicks. Other useful information includes identification tips, migration patterns, and where the best birding vacation spots are. Packed with full-color photos, 1,001 Secrets Every Bird Watcher Should Know is a fun, informative read for every bird watcher.
Bird-watchers are tense, competitive, selfish, shifty, dishonest, distrusting, boorish, pedantic, unsentimental, arrogant and - above all - envious'. So says Bill Oddie, and he should know! It's a tough environment out there on marsh and moorland, and this scurrilous little classic is a must for all devoted birders and twitchers (and as Bill relates, there is a mighty difference!). With years of hard-earned experience, Bill dares to say all the things that other b's and t's will recognize as true but which they have never dared to own up or admit to, even to themselves. Whether discussing the birds he's seen, the birds that got away, equipment, apparel, sightings, cock-ups, places to visit or people to avoid, Bill's enthusiasm is infectious, and his knowledge unsurpassed. This little black book is one item that no serious birdwatcher can afford to leave out of the rucksack, and it will prove an essential companion when trudging the estuaries and riverbanks, in torrential rain and gusty gale in search of that elusive rare beauty.
An ornithologist’s account of his youthful, year-long, cross-country birdwatching adventure: “A fascinating memoir of an obsession.” —Booklist At sixteen, Kenn Kaufman dropped out of the high school where he was student council president and hit the road, hitching back and forth across America, from Alaska to Florida, Maine to Mexico. Maybe not all that unusual a thing to do in the seventies, but what Kenn was searching for was a little different: not sex, drugs, God, or even self, but birds. A report of a rare bird would send him hitching nonstop from Pacific to Atlantic and back again. When he was broke he would pick fruit or do odd jobs to earn the fifty dollars or so that would last him for weeks. His goal was to set a record—most North American species seen in a year—but along the way he began to realize that at this breakneck pace he was only looking, not seeing. What had been a game became a quest for a deeper understanding of the natural world. Kingbird Highway is a unique coming-of-age story, combining a lyrical celebration of nature with wild, and sometimes dangerous, adventures, starring a colorful cast of characters.
In 1983, Mike O'Connor opened the Bird Watcher's General Store on Cape Cod, which might well have been the first store devoted solely to birding in the United States. Since that time he has answered thousands of questions about birds, both at his store and while walking down the aisles of the supermarket. The questions have ranged from inquiries about individual species ("Are flamingos really real?") to what and when to feed birds ("Should I bring in my feeders for the summer?") to the down-and-dirty specifics of backyard birding ("Why are the birds dropping poop in my pool?"). Answering the questions has been easy; keeping a straight face has been hard. Why Don't Woodpeckers Get Headaches? is the solution for the beginning birder who already has a book that explains the slight variation between Common Ground-Doves and Ruddy Ground-Doves but who is really much more interested in why birds sing at 4:30 A.M. instead of 7:00 A.M., or whether it's okay to feed bread to birds, or how birds rediscover your feeders so quickly when you've just filled them after a long vacation. Or, for that matter, whether flamingos are really real.
Author: Les Beletsky
Publisher: National Geographic Books
Release Date: 2010
Explains why birders take their hobby to other countries and where they like to go, in a continent-by-continent overview of which birds are most highly sought that includes color photos, maps, and birding contacts.
Author: David Allen Sibley
Release Date: 2008-12-18
“I wrote and illustrated this book to help every inquisitive birder, from novice to expert. Whether you can identify six birds or six hundred, you’ll be a better birder if you have a grounding in the real nuts and bolts of what birds look like, and your skills will be even sharper if you know exactly what to look for and how to record what you see.” —David Allen Sibley The Sibley Guide to Birds and The Sibley Guide to Bird Life and Behavior are both universally acclaimed as the new standard source of species information. And now David Sibley, America’s premier birder and best-known bird artist, takes a new direction; in Sibley’s Birding Basics he is concerned not so much with species as with the general characteristics that influence the appearance of all birds and thus give us the clues to their identity. To create this guide, David Sibley thought through all the skills that enable him to identify a bird in the few instants it is visible to him. Now he shares that information, integrating an explanation of the identification process with many painted and drawn images of details (such as a feather) or concepts. Birding Basics begins by reviewing how one can get started as a birder: the equipment necessary, where and when to go birding, and perhaps most important, the essential things to look for when birds appear in the field. Using many illustrations, David Sibley reviews all the basic concepts of bird identification and then describes the variations (of shape, size, and color) that can change the appearance of a bird over time or in different settings. And he issues a warning about “illusions and other pitfalls”—and advice on avoiding them. The second part of the book, also plentifully illustrated, deals with another set of clues, the major aspects of avian life that differ from species to species: feathers (color, arrangement, shape, molt), behavior and habitat, and sounds. This scientifically precise, beautifully illustrated volume distills the essence of David Sibley’s own experience and skills, providing a solid introduction to “naming” the birds. With Sibley as your guide, when you learn how to interpret what the feathers, the anatomical structure, the sounds of a bird tell you—when you know the clues that show you why there’s no such thing as “just a duck”—birding will be more fun, and more meaningful. An essential addition to the Sibley shelf! From the Trade Paperback edition.
Author: Victor Emanuel
Publisher: University of Texas Press
Release Date: 2017-05-09
Victor Emanuel is widely considered one of America's leading birders. He has observed more than six thousand species during travels that have taken him to every continent. He founded the largest company in the world specializing in birding tours and one of the most respected ones in ecotourism. Emanuel has received some of birding's highest honors, including the Roger Tory Peterson Award from the American Birding Association and the Arthur A. Allen Award from the Cornell Laboratory of Ornithology. He also started the first birding camps for young people, which he considers one of his greatest achievements. In One More Warbler, Emanuel recalls a lifetime of birding adventures—from his childhood sighting of a male Cardinal that ignited his passion for birds to a once-in-a-lifetime journey to Asia to observe all eight species of cranes of that continent. He tells fascinating stories of meeting his mentors who taught him about birds, nature, and conservation, and later, his close circle of friends—Ted Parker, Peter Matthiessen, George Plimpton, Roger Tory Peterson, and others—who he frequently birded and traveled with around the world. Emanuel writes about the sighting of an Eskimo Curlew, thought to be extinct, on Galveston Island; setting an all-time national record during the annual Audubon Christmas Bird Count; attempting to see the Imperial Woodpecker in northwestern Mexico; and birding on the far-flung island of Attu on the Aleutian chain. Over the years, Emanuel became a dedicated mentor himself, teaching hundreds of young people the joys and enrichment of birding. "Birds changed my life," says Emanuel, and his stories make clear how a deep connection to the natural world can change everyone's life.
Author: Mel White
Publisher: National Geographic Books
Release Date: 2006
Pinpoints the best places to view more than four hundred species of birds, utilizing color photographs and maps to identify bird sanctuaries, national and state parks, wildlife refuges, nature trails, and other birding locales.
Learn the how’s and why’s of bird behavior, from flirtatious mating practices and gorgeous birdsong to flying south for the winter. In this lively reference book, Laura Erickson addresses hundreds of real-life questions sent in to the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, the world’s foremost authority on birds. With expert advice on bird watching techniques and equipment, feeding and housing birds, protecting habitats, and much more, Erickson guides you through the intricacies of the avian world with a contagious passion for our feathered friends.
In 2015, Noah Strycker, a young American birder, became the first person to see more than half of the 10,000 bird species on planet Earth in one year. Traveling to forty-one countries on seven continents with just a small backpack, a pair of binoculars, and a series of one-way tickets, Noah not only set a new world record, he also captured the hearts and imaginations of people all over the world.
ItÆs estimated that 50 to 60 million Americans count birding among their hobbies. Some hang feeders in their backyards and accumulate yard lists; others participate in annual ôChristmas Countsö; a select few travel to the ends of the earth in an effort to see every bird in the world. With Fifty Places to Go Birding Before You Die, Chris Santella takes the best-selling ôFifty Placesö recipe and applies it to this most popular pastime. Santella presents some of the greatest bird-watching venues in the United States and abroad through interviews with prominent birders, from tour leaders and conservationists to ornithologists and academics. Interviewees include ornithologist Kenn Kaufman; David Allen Sibley, author and illustrator of The Sibley Guide to Birds; Rose Ann Rowlett, the ômother of modern birdingö; John Fitzpatrick, director of the Cornell Lab of Ornithology; and Steve McCormick, president and CEO of The Nature Conservancy. The places vary from the urban (New York CityÆs Central Park) to the mystical (the cloud forests of Triunfo in Chiapas, Mexico) to the extremely remote (the sub-Arctic islands of New Zealand). The book includes 40 gorgeous photographs that capture the vibrancy of our feathered friends, and the beautiful places they call home.
Author: Mark Obmascik
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
Release Date: 2008-06-23
Every year on January 1, a quirky crowd of adventurers storms out across North America for a spectacularly competitive event called a Big Year -- a grand, grueling, expensive, and occasionally vicious, "extreme" 365-day marathon of birdwatching. For three men in particular, 1998 would be a whirlwind, a winner-takes-nothing battle for a new North American birding record. In frenetic pilgrimages for once-in-a-lifetime rarities that can make or break their lead, the birders race each other from Del Rio, Texas, in search of the rufous-capped warbler, to Gibsons, British Columbia, on a quest for Xantus's hummingbird, to Cape May, New Jersey, seeking the offshore great skua. Bouncing from coast to coast on their potholed road to glory, they brave broiling deserts, roiling oceans, bug-infested swamps, a charge by a disgruntled mountain lion, and some of the lumpiest motel mattresses known to man. The unprecedented year of beat-the-clock adventures ultimately leads one man to a new record -- one so gigantic that it is unlikely ever to be bested...finding and identifying an extraordinary 745 different species by official year-end count. Prize-winning journalist Mark Obmascik creates a rollicking, dazzling narrative of the 275,000-mile odyssey of these three obsessives as they fight to the finish to claim the title in the greatest -- or maybe the worst -- birding contest of all time. With an engaging, unflappably wry humor, Obmascik memorializes their wild and crazy exploits and, along the way, interweaves an entertaining smattering of science about birds and their own strange behavior with a brief history of other bird-men and -women; turns out even Audubon pushed himself beyond the brink when he was chasing and painting the birds of America. A captivating tour of human and avian nature, passion and paranoia, honor and deceit, fear and loathing, The Big Year shows the lengths to which people will go to pursue their dreams, to conquer and categorize -- no matter how low the stakes. This is a lark of a read for anyone with birds on the brain -- or not.
Birding on Borrowed Time tells, in her own words, the remarkable story of Phoebe Snetsigner, the woman who saw more birds in her life than any other human being in the history of the world. Phoebe's quest to see as many birds as possible only began at the age of 34, when she first laid eyes on a resplendent Blackburnian Warbler. Both a lively chronicle of birding adventures and a profoundly moving human document, Birding on Borrowed Time is the memoir of a truly extraordinary woman. The book includes 45 illustrations by renowned avian artist H. Douglas Pratt (including 16 full-color plates), appendices, indices, and a map showing Phoebe's travel destinations.