Autumn Bird List


We have been on the lookout for hawks or any birds that might come our way to study as part of our Outdoor Hour Challenge – Hawks assignment.

Monterey 17 Mile Drive (12)

We had the opportunity to travel to Monterey, California last week for a wedding. While we were there we drove the 17 Mile Drive from Pebble Beach along the coast. This is a fantastic drive and winds through cypress groves, along the Pacific Ocean, and allows for many scenic stops at beaches and rocky outcroppings. The image above is the Lone Cypress stop along the drive.

At one stop, we heard and observed a Red-tailed hawk!

Monterey Hawk (4)

We were able to get a really good look at his silhouette and identify him both by his shape and his call. Perfect timing!

This is a month of changing birds at the birdfeeder.

My October Bird List (in our yard)

  1. Anna’s hummingbird
  2. American goldfinch
  3. Western scrub jay
  4. Dark-eyed Junco (returned to our yard 10/13/14)
  5. White-crowned sparrow (returned to our yard 10/13/14
  6. Mourning doves
  7. Flicker (heard and not seen)
  8. Great horned owl (heard and not seen)
  9. Northern mockingbird (singing his heart out every day from the top of a tree)


Now that the season is finally changing around here we will see more visitors to our birdfeeders. Coming up fast, Project Feederwatch will be here before we know it!

 What birds did you see this week?


Birds of North America Notebooking PagesBirds of the World Notebooking PagesBirds - Basic Study Pages

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Autumn Nature Journal Examples

Autumn Nature Journal  (2)

There is something about autumn that makes me want to create a nature journal, capturing the last bits of warm weather left, the few colorful weeds still left blooming, the trees, the change of birds.

Autumn Nature Journal  (1)

Using the grid from this month’s newsletter, I did a simple page that will be filled by the end of the month. It is a simple record of some of the changes and interesting events observed this month.

Autumn Nature Journal  (3)

There was also some time during our visit to Yosemite to create a page for the thistles that were growing and blooming right behind our campsite. Nothing fancy but meaningful to me as I enjoyed an autumn afternoon sitting on a log and sketching a few thistles.

Have you created any journals this month yet? There is still time left to do one or two pages!

Outdoor Hour Challenge – Witch Hazel Tree Study

Witch Hazel Nature Study @handbookofnaturestudy

Inside Preparation Work:

Outdoor Hour Time:

  • Use your outdoor time this week to look at fall trees, looking in particular for the yellow strap-like flowers and nuts of the Witch Hazel. It might be fun to also include a Fall Nature Walk Scavenger Hunt using this printable from Hearts and Trees.
  • Take along your nature journals to sketch the Witch Hazel flower into your nature journal.
  • Advanced students: Make sure to look for the Witch Hazel nuts and find the seeds if possible. If possible, collect a few of the nuts to take home to discover just how far the seeds will fly once the nut opens up.

Follow-Up Activity:

Create a nature journal entry all about the Witch Hazel. Here are some things to include (or you can use the notebook page in the ebook:

  • Color and texture of the bark
  • Leaves, if any are present, noting the color.
  • Flower (see page 688 in the Handbook of Nature Study for a nice diagram of the flower)
  • Date of your observations and the location
  • Draw the Witch Hazel nut. Write how you think the seeds are thrown so far from the tree.

Advanced Study: Complete the notebooking page in the ebook using a field guide or the internet resources above.

Handbook of Nature Study Ultimate Naturalist Library

Join us for this series of challenges every week here on the Handbook of Nature Study. If you want to purchase the Autumn Nature Study Continues ebook so you can follow along with all the notebooking pages, coloring pages, and subject images, you can join the Ultimate or Journey Membership Levels. See the Join Us page for complete information. Also, you can view the Autumn Nature Study Continues content list on the announcement page.

OHC Autumn Nature Study Continues Cover Button

You can also submit any Outdoor Hour Challenge blog entry from October to the next edition of the Outdoor Hour Challenge Blog Carnival by sending the link directly to me by 10/29/14.