The more I watched the birds over the winter the more I wondered what they do when they weren’t eating at our feeders.
I want to encourage birds into my garden because they are not only pretty to look at and delightful to listen to, they eat lots of bad bugs. Even the seedeaters collect bugs in spring to feed to their young. So having them around can put a serious dent in the pest population.
If you’ve ever listened to a bird singing atop a tree and wondered what he or she was chirping about The Singing Life of Birds (Houghton, Mifflin $28.00) is the book for you.
For centuries man has questioned why birds sing and what they are saying and in this book, author, scientist and renowned ornithologist Donald Crossman takes his readers on a listening adventure to help us understand the living dramas going on in our backyards. He puts his reader inside the mind of singing birds, exploring not only how and why they sing, but also how we can better understand them through their songs.
Some birds sing in dialects while other have a single song. Some sing during the day, but others chirp only at night. And, why is birdsong sung mostly by the males of the specie?
Kroodsma, professor emeritus at the University of Massachusetts shares the answers to these and other burning questions from information garnered over more than three decades of recording and analyzing the songs of bird in this intriguing instructional book.
Included is a high quality CD featuring birdsongs taped at both normal speeds and slowed to 1/2 and 1/4 speeds allowing listeners to pick up discreet sounds that help with interpretation.
Are you a baffled bird watcher, always struggling to put names to the feathered friends that inhabit the neighborhood and hang out at the cottage? Having trouble telling the difference between a purple finch and a house finch or a wren from a sparrow? Not to worry. Identify Yourself: The 50 Most Common Bird Identification Challenges (Houghton Mifflin $19.95) by Bill Thomas III and the editors of Bird Watchers Digest (800) 879-2473, www.birdwatchersdigest.com, may just change your life and turn you into a bird watching whiz.
Offering tips, techniques and tricks that make bird identification both easy and fun, this informative book chronicles the subtle differences one must look for when looking at a hard to distinguish bird. Its garnered rave reviews from professionals and hobbyists alike.
The Best Gift for Gardening Moms
Mother’s Day is coming soon but if the special lady on your gift list is a gardener, there’s no need to panic. Gardeners are a snap to shop for especially at this time of year. Gift certificates may be considered impersonal for some but to a gardener, a pre-paid shopping spree at a garden center at planting time is “the best.”
If mom is an avid plant collector or loves to shop for yard art and pottery, consider a chauffeured mystery trip to some top-notch garden centers Mom has never shopped.