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Highly Recommended Birding Books
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Peterson's: A Field Guide to Western Birds

We love this book. It's small enough to fit the pocket of my levis and tough enough to take the abuse. Some say that it needs updating, but it's fine for us. We like the accuracy of the images and the way the artist points out small markings that distinguish one bird from another that is almost identical. This is the only book I grab if I only have time to grab one on the way out of the house.
The Sibley Field Guide to Birds of Western North America
This book has fabulous images, good descriptions and is small, though not as small as the Peterson guide. What we like about this book is that it has distribution maps for each bird on the page. You don't have to hunt the back of the book for the distribution maps. This is one book that is most praised by seasoned birders.
The Sibley Guide to Birds
The Sibley Guide to birds goes hand in hand with the Sibley field guide. Though, larger and more difficult to heft around in the bushes, it's a great companion. We tend to like to leave this guy at home and return to it for studying photos after an outing with the avians.

Kingbird Highway
What a great read! If you're like us and wish you could take a year off just to do birding, this is the dream book for you. Kenn Kaufman's year hitch-hiking coast to coast (several times) in search of the 'big list' is such great travelogue. He takes you from the Dry Tortugas to Alaska. He introduces you to the birding youth of America as it stood in the 1970s. And he paints a picture of his hunts is such colorful terms that one wishes one were there too. More than anything else, having that kind of time to bird and the joy with which he describes his trek leaves one longing to get out there and bird!


The Nikon D-80 has (so far) been a fabulous camera. It powers up instantly, focuses fast and has good speed in multi-shot mode.

The only issue we've seen so far is getting the camera to focus on birds in a thicket environment when the camera is in fully automatic mode. The camera, of course, tends to focus on what is immediately in front or sometimes in back of the bird you're trying to shoot.

Other than that, it's been a fabulous machine.

The Nikon Fieldscope ED82 with FSA-L1 SLR camera mount is an excellent tool for getting on top of distant birds. The FSA-L1 mount allows us to couple the D-80 with the Fieldscope to get really close to distant birds.

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