Top 10 Best Books for Birdwatching

Birdwatching can be a fascinating, enjoyable activity, but it can be tricky to spot those elusive birds, or think of new ways to attract new species to your garden. With these brilliant guides and gift books, birdwatching will be more rewarding than ever. From garden birds to more exotic feathered friends, you'll find the perfect birdwatching book here.

1. RSPB Guide to Birdwatching

David Chandler

This comprehensive guide is perfect for beginners of all ages and will introduce them to the extraordinary world of birdwatching. It's split into six sections, covering: principles of identification; birdwatching equipment and field skills; how birds are built, how they work and where they come from; their behaviour; their habitats; and how to help birds in your garden and beyond, as well as current threats to birds.

Alt Text

2. Bird Bingo

Christine Berrie

This gorgeously-illustrated bingo game is a somewhat different guide to birdwatching, featuring 64 stunning species of birds from around the world. Spot all sorts of feathered friends, from the robin to the puffin, the kookaburra to the splendid fairywren, to complete your set! This fun, educational game is brilliant for helping players remember the names of their favourite birds. Also contains a leaflet featuring basic information and the quirky traits of different birds.

Alt Text

3. Top 100 Birding Sites of the World

Dominic Couzens

Covering sites across Europe, Asia, Africa, Australasia, North and South America and Antarctica, discover the best places to see extraordinary birds. This beautiful hardback features first-hand accounts, fascinating facts and jaw-dropping photography. Marvel at amazing avian spectacles, like the Snow Goose blizzard in Bosque del Apache, and the swarms of Lesser Flamingos on Africa's Rift Valley Lakes. A gorgeous, must-have tome for birdwatchers and animal-lovers.

Alt Text

4. Birdwatching Notes

Ryland Peters & Small

This invaluable resource will allow you to plan your next birdwatching excursion and record the wonderful birds you've spotted. Use the notes pages to write down your favourite birdwatching locations and plan future trips. This gorgeous journal includes sections on different types of birds and where to find them, including water birds, woodland birds and urban birds.

Alt Text

5. The Joy of Birdwatching

Alan Davies

This pocket-sized delight is filled with fascinating bird trivia, handy hints and tips, and captivating stories and quotes from the wonderful world of birds. This is the perfect gift for anyone who appreciates the joy of twitching.

Alt Text

6. RSPB Pocket Garden Birdwatch

Mark Ward

Get birdspotting with this practical guide from the RSPB. Create a welcoming garden environment for all sorts of birds, with information on the right sorts of bird food, feeders and where to put them. Enjoy practical projects, such as making a nest box, and identify your birds with over 40 profiles of garden birds, including in-situ photography that shows them in the wild. Sit back and watch birds come to explore, feed and raise families.

Alt Text

7. Our Garden Birds

Matt Sewell

This stunning volume features street artist Matt Sewell's unique take on 52 favourite garden birds. With distinctive and enchanting pop-art watercolours, this book is the perfect gift for fans of feathered friends, and includes wonderful descriptions. Great tits are described as "bossing other birds around", and bullfinches as "playful" with "shy buoyancy". With one bird for each week of the year, this gorgeous gift book will delight children and adults alike, whether birdwatchers or art-lovers.

Alt Text

8. Bill Bailey's Remarkable Guide to British Birds

Bill Bailey

Bill Bailey reveals his favourite British birds in this amusing and personal guide, complete with drawings, notes and cartoons by the comedian himself. A visual feast, it includes a fascinating and funny insight into these remarkable birds, including what they eat, where they fly and how they communicate. Bill reminisces on family outings and reveals how birdwatching "gave a purpose to the day" and provided him with a love of nature which has persisted into adulthood.

Alt Text

9. 101 Golden Rules of Birdwatching

Marcus Schneck

This guide is the perfect companion to the wonders of birdwatching - an exciting though sometimes challenging activity! The book includes anecdotes as well as wise advice and tales of personal experience. It provides invaluable hints and tips and is filled with practical advice from a life-long birdwatcher. Track down new and elusive birds, attract more species to your garden, and make this enjoyable activity more rewarding than ever.

Alt Text

10. Collins BTO Guide to British Birds

Paul Sterry

Collins has collaborated with the British Trust for Ornithology to produce this authoritative and up-to-date handbook to the common birds of Britain and Ireland. The unique identification guide features all species that breed regularly in the region, plus those that winter here or occur as common passage migrants. Great for both beginners and seasoned birdwatchers, it's designed to be used in the field, with text and photographs that enable easy identification of different species.

Alt Text
  • ABFHE
    Marcus Schneck
    • £9.89
    • RRP £9.99
    • Save £0.10
    Birdwatching is a hobby that sometimes pleases, sometimes frustrates, but always enthrals. It is a pastime that can take years to understand and "101 Golden Rules of Birdwatching" is the perfect companion for that journey - filled with wise advice alongside tales of personal experience. Not only does the book include anecdotes about this unique activity that will resonate with any bird watcher, it also provides valuable hints and tips and essential dos and don'ts. Packed with practical, hard-earned advice from a life-long birdwatcher, it will help you track down new and elusive species, attract more birds to your garden, and make the time you spend on your favourite hobby more rewarding than ever before. From the birding beginner to the experienced twitcher, "101 Golden Rules of Birdwatching" has something to entertain and inform all nature lovers.
  • AMISD
    Alan Davies
    • £9.89
    • RRP £9.99
    • Save £0.10
    This pocket-sized miscellany, packed with fascinating facts, handy hints and captivating stories and quotes from the world of birds, is perfect for anyone who knows the incomparable joy of twitching.
  • TPBS
    Dominic Couzens
    • £7.99
    • RRP £25.00
    • Save £17.01
    Find out all the best places to see our feathered friends with the Top 100 Birding Sites of the World.

    Covering sites across Europe, Asia, Africa, Australasia, North and South America and Antarctica, the gorgeous hardback features first-hand accounts, fascinating information and absolutely stunning photography.

    Awe-inspiring, the coffee table book also features some of the world's best avian spectacles such as the Snow Goose 'blizzard' that takes place in Bosque del Apache and the swarms of Lesser Flamingos on Africa's Rift Valley Lakes.

    Quite simply, a must-have for any birdwatcher.
  • ANNFS
    Paul Sterry
    • £16.79
    • RRP £19.99
    • Save £3.20
    In a unique new collaboration, Collins have paired up with the respected British Trust for Ornithology, bringing together the most authoritative and up-to-date information in this new field guide to the common birds of Britain and Ireland. This unique new identification guide features all of the birds that have occurred five or more times in Britain and Ireland, including all species that breed regularly in the region, plus those that winter here, or occur as common passage migrants. The book has been written and illustrated as much with the beginner in mind as the experienced birdwatcher. Designed to be used in the field, the text and photographs describe and illustrate the key features needed to identify a species with confidence, and to separate it from similar, or 'confusion', species. As a general rule, the species accounts follow the taxonomic running order provided by the British Ornithologist's Union (BOU). But for the benefit of the reader, in some instances the running order has been juggled subtly so that potentially confusing species are placed side by side. Throughout the book there are special pages that describe the key features needed for separating different families, and groups of birds that share the same habitat. More than 1,200 photographs are featured and many are seen here for the first time. They have been chosen carefully to show not only important identification features but also to give clues to the usual habitat favoured by the bird, and its typical posture. Annotations highlight key identification features that are discussed in the text. Song and call are useful aids to identification, and reference is made to vocalisation for each species. The average size of each bird is included; in most species this is the length, measured from the tip of the bill to the tip of the tail, but in birds that are seen most frequently in flight (such as raptors), the given measurement is wingspan. Relative abundance maps are shown for every species. The darker shading shows where a species is most abundant, and the lighter shades where it is less so. These are based on the very latest information contained within the BTO's Bird Atlas 2007-11.
  • AFAQU
    Christine Berrie
    • £19.89
    • RRP £19.95
    • Save £0.06
    This beautifully illustrated bingo game features 64 species of birds from around the world. Spot all kinds of birds from the robin to the puffin and the kookaburra to the splendid fairywren gather them together to complete your set and bingo! Bird Bingo brings a fun and educational twist to the traditional game as players learn the names and colourings of both their favourite species and weird and wonderful exotic birds. This title contains 64 superbly illustrated bingo chips, 1 board, 12 bingo cards and brightly coloured counters for you to mark up your card, as well as a leaflet containing basic information and a few quirky traits for all of the birds featured.
  • ALUBV
    David Chandler
    • £12.89
    • RRP £12.99
    • Save £0.10
    Inspired by the RSPB's learnbirding.com website this great new book will launch beginner birders of all ages into the world of birds and birdwatching. The book has been split into six sections which cover: principles of identification and tips on making notes and recording; birdwatching equipment and field skills; how birds are built, how they work and where they come from; behaviour including breeding, feeding, migration and adaptation; bird habitats and distribution; how to help wild birds in your garden and beyond, current threats to birds and how to get involved in conservation.
  • AEBTC
    Matt Sewell
    • £7.89
    • RRP £10.00
    • Save £2.11
    In this beautiful, collectible new volume, street artist Matt Sewell offers his own unique take on 52 of our favourite British garden birds. Since its first appearance in July 2009, Matt's 'Bird of the Week' feature for the Caught by the River website has quickly become a cult hit. His pop-art watercolours are distinctive and enchanting, as are his innovative descriptions, which see great tits 'bossing the other birds around', the 'playful yet shy buoyancy' of bullfinches and the 'improbable' nature of the waxwing ('like a computer-generated samurai finch'). With 52 birds, one for each week of the year, this delightful gift book will appeal to birders, children and adults, and art and design fans alike.
  • AIQKY
    Mark Ward
    • £6.89
    • RRP £6.99
    • Save £0.10
    Get out into the garden and get birdspotting with the RSPB. Birdwatching can be done from your doorstep with RSPB Pocket Garden Birdwatch, the perfect guide for taking part in the Big Garden Birdwatch. You'll find all the information you need to create a welcoming garden environment for birds, with explanations of different bird food, feeders and how to site them, including practical projects, such as making a nest box. Identify your birds with over 40 profiles of garden birds, including in-situ photography that shows birds as you see them in the wild along with a helpful size comparison gallery. With this new edition of RSPB Pocket Garden Birdwatch (previous ISBN 9781405340885) you will be able to make your garden more attractive to birds and then sit back and watch them explore, feed and raise families. It is perfect for the budding birdwatcher or families getting involved in birdwatching together.
  • AJGVP
    Ryland Peters & Small
    • £9.89
    • RRP £12.00
    • Save £2.11
    Whether you are looking for a useful place to plan your next birdwatching excursion, or somewhere to record the birds you've spotted and where you've seen them, Birdwatching Notes will prove to be an invaluable resource. Use the note pages to write your favourite places to see birds, or plan your future visits to bird reservations. The journal includes sections on different types of birds and where to find them, including water birds, woodland birds and urban birds, and spaces to fill in how to identify birds in their natural habitats.
  • AVLWF
    • £16.00
    • RRP £20.00
    • Save £4.00
    A humorous and very personal guide written by Bill Bailey about his favourite British birds, complete with drawings, notes and cartoons by the comedian himself. 'When herons are spooked they have a habit of vomiting as a defence. Half-digested pieces of eel and water vole skull on your head is not a good look. Just so you know.' Bill Bailey's Remarkable Guide to British Birds is all about comedian Bailey's love of birds. A visual feast - it is packed with illustrations, sketches and notes by Bailey - as well as informative, it is funny and insightful, and positively crackles with energy, knowledge and wit as he takes us on a journey around the British isles, zooming in on those birds that enthuse him the most. Whether it's what they eat, where they fly to or how they communicate, these birds are always fascinating, and Bailey introduces us to their weird and wonderful ways in a manner that is always entertaining. If you're a parent who'd like to appear a bit clever when your child asks you the name of a bird; if you want to find a new and healthy hobby that takes you outdoors; or whether, quite simply, you want to understand a bit more about our natural environment and have a laugh at the same time, this is the perfect companion book to have. Alongside music and stand-up, one of Bailey's favourite pastimes is birdwatching, which he has been doing since he was a child in the West Country. His fondest memories are of family outings with parents, grandparents and cousins, ticking the birds off in his little Observer's Book of Birds. As he has said about those formative years, 'birdwatching gave a purpose to the day and a love of the natural world which has carried on into my adult life'. A beautifully and originally designed hardback, it will delight Bailey's fans as well as those who like a bit of armchair escapism.