Books for Birders

For those who arise before dawn to trudge the muddy trails and plan vacations with an Audubon guide firmly in hand, this one's for you.

The Tea-Olive Bird Watching Society

By Augusta Trobaugh

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"The women of a small town's bird watching society secretly plan to "eliminate" the husband of one of their members in this modern spin on the classic film Arsenic and Old Lace. Founding members of the Tea-Olive Bird Watching Society in tiny Tea-Olive, Georgia, are Beulah, Sweet, Wildwood, and Zion - each named after a hymn. Pillars of the community, seemingly beyond reproach, two of these ladies are nonetheless conspiring to murder retired judge L. Hyson Breed, a newcomer to Tea-Olive. It all begins when the judge tricks Sweet into marriage, steals her land for a development project, and fast-talks his way right onto the town council. By the time Beulah and Zion discover his evil plans - and realize that Sweet has endured personal harm with more to come - the judge is already a permanent fixture in town. Or is he? In a story replete with coconut cake, grits, and poisoned turtle stew, Beulah and Zion attempt to do away with the judge while always remaining unfailing polite."

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The Little Book of Birding

By George H. Harrison

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Bird-watching expert George Harrison provides more than a glimpse into the unpredictable and often humorous avian world. Experienced bird watchers will recognize with delight the insight he imparts. They will also recognize themselves, albeit with some embarrassment, in the humorous photographs, which show to what lengths some people will go in their obsession with birds.

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The Complete Idiot's Guide to Birdwatching

By Sheila Buff

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Tips for choosing the right equipment, finding a good birding location, and identifying the birds once you get there.
An eBook.

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The American Bird Conservancy Guide to the 500 Most Important Birding Areas in the United States

By Robert M. Chipley

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This expert resource organizes the United States into 36 ornithologically distinct bird regions, then identifies and describes the 500 sites within these regions. Each site entry includes ornithological highlights, ownership information, a description of habitats and land use, a guide to which species one can expect to find, conservation issues, and visitor information. Full-color maps and illustrations throughout, along with a thorough index, make this book as useful as it is unique.

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Pete Dunne on Bird Watching: The How-to, Where-to, and When-to of Birding

By Pete Dunne

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"Pete Dunne has taught birding to beginners for years, but he has never found the right book to help them get started. Now the popular birding author identifies the skills and tools available to people with any amount of interest--great or small-- in bird watching. Beginning with backyard birding and moving through a quick but comprehensive survey of tools of the trade, Dunne outlines ten basic, simple steps in bird identification that can make a birder out of the most casual of observers. He goes on to show beginning birders how to use their skills to explore new horizons through birding by ear, birding by telescope, and finding and identifying rare or difficult birds."

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Kingbird Highway: The Biggest Year in the Life of an Extreme Birder

By Kenn Kaufman

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"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."

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Getting Started in Bird Watching

By Edward W. Cronin

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Learn how to become a competent birder in the shortest time possible. Birdwatching is the favorite sport of millions, but it can be frustrating for the beginner. Originally published in 1989, this concise volume was the first book designed to let the beginner in on the secrets of skilled birdwatching. Although especially valuable for beginners, the birding tips and regional checklists make this book useful for all birding enthusiasts.
An eBook.

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Follow That Bird: Around the World with a Passionate Bird-Watcher

By Bill Oddie

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Conservationist Oddie is best known in Britain for his role in the long-running TV comedy series "The Goodies." In this book he takes the reader on a bird-watching tour to such diverse places as Morocco, the Isles of Scilly, India, Ireland, the Shetland Islands, and Papua New Guinea. As he encountered many species of birds he also had several bizarre incidents along the way. This lighthearted book is illustrated with photos and the author's field sketches.

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Sibley's Birding Basics

By David Allen Sibley

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This guide is primarily for the beginning and intermediate birder, or indeed for anyone who wants to develop better birding skills. Sibley explains what to look for and how to find it!

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Birding for Beginners

By Sheila Buff

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Like Sibley's Birding Basics, an excellent book to start with. It includes a guide and tips on how to identify birds as well as information on behavior, bird lists, and binoculars.

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