1. Rite in the Rain Journal
A birder’s journal is more than just a book. It’s a record of discovery. For the ultimate birding expedition, consider field favorite Rite in the Rain. The company’s Birders Field Journal Kit includes a rugged-and-ready all-weather cover with a black pen whose ink won’t fail in a snowstorm or a heat wave. The spiral-bound journal offers space for sketching and notes and, like all Rite in the Rain books, is made to withstand the elements.
Price: $9.95 for journal; $37.09 for kit
2. Bird Guide App
Forget lugging around heavy guidebooks to ID birds on your weekend hike or nature walk. National Audubon has turned its popular guidebook into an iPhone application. Plug in the bird’s shape or general family, and out comes a list of potential species, each with colored images and a detailed description. National Audubon has converted its guides on wildflowers, trees, mammals, and more into apps, too. Can’t decide which one to give your nature lover? Offer up an iTunes gift card and let her choose.
Price: From $15
There’s no shortage of birdfeeders and houses out there. Pare down the options by focusing on those made of recycled materials, such as feeders and nest boxes from Wood Link—an Audubon partner. If you’re feeling crafty, build a nest box from wood certified by the Forest Stewardship Council to attract your loved one’s favorite flier. As an add-on, include our wintertime birdfeeding tips.
4. Nikon Monarch 8x42 Binoculars
Not ready to shell out $1,000 for binoculars? Have no fear. You can do very well for a lot less. The Nikon Monarch 8x42 bins are waterproof, serve up a very sharp, bright image with good color, and sell for about $300. A perennial top pick in this price range.
5. Panama Hat
If you’re looking for a hat with a brim wide enough to shade your eyes but not so wide it obscures your view, search no further. Women’s associations in Ecuador make these Panama hats for the United Kingdom’s only fair trade hat specialists. The company helps the women develop weaving skills while financing community development projects.