A few weeks ago, I got accepted into Storey’s Ambassador program and had the opportunity to make my spring book selections. I chose three titles and today’s post is all about the joy of bird watching from Clare Walker Leslie’s How to Look at a Bird book and because we just enjoyed the unofficial start of summer, I’m sharing Storey’s Splash into Summer Book giveaway!

Open Your Eyes to the joy of Watching and Knowing Birds:

How to Look at a Bird Book

My thanks to Storey for the complimentary copy of How to Look at a Bird Book. All opinions are my own. 

About How To Look At a Bird: Author Clare Walker Leslie:

Publisher:Storey/Genre:Nonfiction,Nature,Animals,Birds/114 pages/Paperback

From bestselling author and acclaimed nature illustrator Clare Walker Leslie, How to Look at a Bird invites beginning birdwatchers to hone their observational skills with this easy-to-use visual guide. 

“Using her signature nature journal illustrations, Leslie shows readers the key clues to look for, from the shape of the beak or talons to distinctive feather colorings, flight patterns, and behavioral traits. With an emphasis on the birds that are most likely to be seen at a feeder, in a city park, or at a nature preserve, How to Look at a Bird makes bird watching, identification, and appreciation accessible to everyone, no matter where they live.” 

Clare offers simple prompts that encourage readers to embrace curiosity and take a closer look which I used just today as I watched not one but two! Pileated Woodpeckers in my front yard Oak tree. Some Questions to consider when bird watching, or as Clare says, hanging out with birds:

  • Where are you? * In my front yard. *
  • What season is it? Spring.*
  • How is that bird moving? *In a circle,around a larger tree branch and up the trunk.* 
  • Is the Bird Eating? *No.*

I do wish I’d had a pair of binoculars with me, as Clare suggests, but I’d been gardening and just happened to hear the tap, tap, tapping of the woodpecker and walked towards it. The other birds, mainly Cardinals and Starlings, called out a warning, so by the time I walked to the tree in question, all the birds had flown up and out of my easy view. 

Illustrations by author in How to Look at a Bird

Be Curious!

The author states the most important thing about bird watching is to be curious. Look for birds around you, even if you’re in a busy city. Don’t worry about identifying birds at first, just be patient with yourself. Again, Clare offers questions to help guide us like:

  • Where am I seeing birds?
  • When do certain birds appear?
  • Why is that?

Once you get in the habit of seeing birds around you, you can move onto documenting the birds. My husband and I have this book and a field guide book to help us note and learn more about the birds around our home. I’m going to use a small, simple lined journal to write down the date, time, location, type of bird (or our best guess) and colors. I wish I could draw birds and landscapes like Clare Walker Leslie does! She is so very talented.

Field Marks in How to Look at a Bird

Even though they will be rudimentary at best, I will endeavor to add field marks to our bird findings as we progress. I do love to color, so perhaps I’ll be able to add that element in as well later on. 

My Thoughts:

One of the best parts of living in a rural area is having mature trees along with a pond for a natural water source that birds love. From the moment we moved here, I’ve been enamored with the vast amount of birds and wildIife we share our land with, so I was naturally drawn to this book on birds.

I found it to be an enjoyable and very helpful book! I learned so much from flipping through the pages while watching on my front porch watching the morning birds. Or by following the call of curiosity and going to the tree to seek out the bird I heard first and then saw the pretty red crest of the Pileated Woodpecker.

The Takeaway:

Each chapter is filled with useful information in this book.From Songs vs. Calls, to Nests, to Feeders and what birds to expect (or not!)I found this to be a delightful bird resource. I invite you to learn more about this book and the author, Clare Walker Leslie, by visiting Storey.com. 

More ways to Connect:

Be sure to take a moment to read some of my other book reviews here on the blog and follow me on GoodReads! 

And now it’s giveaway time from Storey. 

Splash into Summer Kids Book Giveaway
Courtesy: Storey Book Giveaway

If you have kids at home, or like me, would love to surprise my nieces and nephews with new summer themed books, you can enter to win Storey’s Splash into Summer giveaway. Enter for a chance to win a treasure trove of water-themed books for kids by visiting Storey’s Splash into Summer Sweeps. No purchase necessary. All rules can be found on the entry form. 

Please share in comments: Do you enjoy birdwatching? 

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