Each year during the holiday season, Americans spend something like half a trillion dollars. Even so, we often feel as if we’ve fallen short on finding that perfect gift. Here are some suggestions that just might make the grade. Most are modestly priced; some even return something to the environment when you buy them.
10. ATX/STX Modular Scope/Swarovski
Yes, this one’s out of reach for most of us. At the same time, it’s a genuine innovation in birding optics: the first modular spotting scope. Interchange the base—with its angled or straight eyepiece—with front lenses that are 65, 85, or 95mm in diameter. The smallest one is amazingly compact; the largest, which zooms to 70x magnification, lets in serious light. All produce remarkably sharp views. An adapter allows for easy photography through the scope.
For: Bird buff
Buy it here: Eagle Optics
Price: $3,400–$4,500, depending base and eyepiece
Bonus Gift Idea: Adopt-a-Bird
Find one here: Audubon Gift Catalog
Price: $30 a bird
Share your favorite avian memories with a bird loving friend or family member by adopting one—or more—of 16 colorful species representing the four flyways. Your giftee will receive a custom holiday card and an e-card, which will include your personal dedication. Proceeds benefit the National Audubon Society.