Bird Watching Answer Book – Book Review

Book Review The Bird Watching Answer Book


This month’s book in my Nature Book Project 2015 is The Bird Watching Answer Book (my affiliate link). As a bird lover and birdwatcher, I found this book to be easy to read and full of interesting and valuable information. The chapters are arranged by broad topics but then provide the information in question and answer style. I rarely have big blocks of time to read books so having the ability to read a shorter section and then pick up where I left off when the next opportunity comes along is very efficient. I actually enjoyed asking my family members questions to see if they knew the answers before I read them. What a great way to learn!

Interspersed in the chapters are pages with tips and practical ideas that relate to bird watching. Information about feeding, creating bird friendly environments, nests, songs, and migration. I wrote recently about my problem with birds flying into my windows. On pages 87-91 there are many ideas for preventing or reducing bird strikes which gave me some fresh ideas to try.

  • On page 7 it has this advice, “Birds are especially drawn to the sound of dripping or flowing water, so setting up a plastic bottle with a small hole in the bottom above your birdbath to provide a slow, steady drip will bring in more individuals and more species than a birdbath alone.” I’m going to try that one!
  • Ever wondered how long certain species of birds live? The book shares many common birds and their life spans on pages 302-304. Fascinating! Did you know a cardinal can live up to 15 years?
  • Then there are lots of questions that I had never even thought to ask. For instance, “Why is it birds can sit on electrical wires and not get zapped?” Hmmmm….good question!
  • Did you know four presidents had mockingbirds as pets? See page 191 for their names.
  • You can see the complete table of contents by clicking the link above.

I give this book a big thumbs up and it will be sitting on my living room table for awhile before it finds its home on my nature library reference shelf. I know that visitors to my home will pick this book up and thumb through it, finding something of interest to catch their eye!

 Bird Watching Answer Book


Some Quick Thoughts

  • I love the size of the book and that the spine is actual cloth binding. The pages have a nice weight and it is just a pleasure to hold and read.
  • The author Laura Erickson is the science editor at the Cornell Lab of Ornithology.
  • I think this would make a wonderful reference book in your nature library. Middle school aged children and up could read the book on their own but you could read aloud a few pages a day even to your youngest children and they would be interested. Charlotte Mason homeschoolers could read aloud a section at a time and have their children narrate back what they learned either in words or a nature journal page.
  • 388 pages, indexed by topic and bird name for easy reference
  • This book would be a great resource for more advanced nature study students. It includes topics such as invasive species, birds that are endangered, and climate change.



Nature Book Project 2015 @handbookofnaturestudy
Previous Month’s Books and Reviews


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