I thought I would put together a short list of last-minute “5 Great Gifts for Birders” — enjoy!
1. A great read is Bald Coot and Screaming Loon by Niall Edworthy. It’s full of poems and great birding facts. There is even a recipe for Pan-fried crow breast in breadcrumbs; Mr. Edworthy writes that “many people used to eat crow, because it was a perfectly acceptable alternative to fancier game meats”:
Remove the breast meat from the carcasses and tenderize it with a meat mallet. Dunk the pieces in beaten egg and then into the breadcrumbs or in a spiced flour mixture. Fry them with some ham in hot oil, turning them over at least once. Connoisseurs say the middle should have a touch of pink.
2. One birding item I usually take along with me is a Grace Eco Extreme, a rugged waterproof case with speakers. I use it with my Ipod Classic which has almost 1,500 bird songs on it. The Grace Eco Extreme has very good volume for playing bird songs and excellent sound quality.
3. One of my favorite bird books so far is Silence of the Songbirds by Bridget Stutchbury. I read it this August, and was captivated by Dr. Stutchbury’s writing about the rapidly disappearing forests in South America and how that affects migratory songbirds.
4. Every Christmas my mother gives me a bird-related calendar. Last year it was “The Birder’s Year 2011 calendar” by David Sibley, which I really love. Here is The Birder’s Year 2012 calendar by David Sibley.
5. My last Great Gift for Birders is the National Audubon Society Guide to Nature Photography: Digital Edition by Tim Fitzharris. This is a great book which gives very good information on how to improve your photography skills. I’m still working on mine.