“Best Places to Bird in the Prairies” Giveaways!

Good Canadian-specific field guides are few and far between, and those for the Prairies are even harder to come by.

Greystone Books has begun to rectify this oversight by publishing a series of books for birders that focus on some of the best birding locations each province has to offer. The first guide in the series looked at British Columbia, and now the newest covers the top spots in the prairie provinces (Alberta, Saskatchewan, and Manitoba). Best Places to Bird in the Prairies is a collaboration between experts from across the provinces: John Acorn from Alberta, Alan Smith from Saskatchewan, and Nicola Koper from Manitoba, who have unparalleled knowledge for their areas.

Maps, detailed directions, and alternate routes for those out-of-the-way locations are provided, but the guide isn’t limited to remote sites; the locales featured are as diverse as the birds that inhabit them, ranging from urban to rural, easily accessible to not very. The guide helps beginning birders as well as those visiting from out of province and abroad to explore the incredible variety of avian species found across the Prairies, and will also guide experienced birders to see target species found only in certain locations.

In Best Places to Bird in the Prairies, three of Canada’s top birders reveal their favourite destinations for spotting local birds in Alberta, Manitoba, and Saskatchewan. They highlight thirty-six of the region’s most highly recommended sites, each of which has been expertly selected for the unique species that reside there. With exclusive lists of specialty birds, splendid color photography, and plenty of insider tips for finding and identifying birdlife year-round, the book is accessible and easy-to-use—an indispensable resource that will inspire both novice and seasoned birders to put on their walking shoes, grab their binoculars, and start exploring.

Eager to get your hands on the Best Places to Bird in the Prairies? Well, you’ve come to the right place! We have two copies of the new guide to give away, from this blog and also from the Alberta Birds Facebook Group; a big thanks to Josh at Greystone Books for making the giveaway possible. That’s two books we’re giving away, so check out the Facebook group for those contest details.

How to win a copy:

1. Please comment on this post below with your favourite birding location in either of the three provinces, or your favourite prairie species.

2. For a second entry, head over to my personal Facebook page Prairie Birder as well as to the Greystone Books Facebook page and “Like” them both.

Please mention below in your comment that you have “Liked” them (if you’ve already liked our pages, that still counts!).

The deadline to enter is Thursday, April 26th. After a random draw, I’ll announce the winner on Friday, April 27th.

Good luck to everyone!

Backyard Bird Feeding: An Alberta Guide Winner!

After a random draw, congratulations to Aislinn, the winner of the holiday giveaway of an autographed copy of the new book, Backyard Bird Feeding: An Alberta Guide by Myrna Pearman!

Thank you to everyone who entered. And thank you to Myrna, of the Ellis Bird Farm, for providing the book and making the giveaway possible.

Happy birding/feeding with your new book, Aislinn!

The Warbler Guide and App Winner!

Warbler-tour-smallI’m sorry for not publishing this on Christmas Day, but with the arrival of a new ram for our flock, Santa, and then helping out with our community Christmas Day dinner, the day got away from me.

Congratulation to Nicole R., the winner of this month’s holiday giveaway of The Warbler Guide, and the new Warbler Guide app.

Thank you to everyone who entered, you were all very close with your guesses.  A special thank you to Jessica from Princeton University Press for making the giveaway possible.

Happy birding in the new year with your new app and book, Nicole!

The birds in the quiz were:

1. Connecticut Warbler
2. Black-and-White Warbler
3. Tennessee Warbler
4. Black-throated Green Warbler
5. American Redstart
6. Blackburnian Warbler
7. Black-throated Blue Warbler

Here’s another chance from Princeton University Press to win a copy of the The Warbler Guide app (now out on iTunes), a copy of The Warbler Guide, and also a pair of Zeiss TERRA ED binoculars; click here for your chance to win theses great prizes.

The Warbler Guide App, and a Giveaway


I’m very excited to be a part of The Warbler Guide App blog tour in partnership with Princeton University Press, to promote the new Warbler Guide app, which will be released soon. And please be sure to head over there to see the other blogs participating in the tour.

Some of the exciting features of the new app include 3D models of birds in all plumages; under-tail views; and the ability to find birds by filtering by colour, alphabetical order, song type, and taxonomic order.

Now for the giveaway!

Below are five photos of unidentified warblers, all taken by me at the Long Point Bird Observatory, Long Point, Ontario, in 2012 and 2013. The photos are labelled #1, #2, #3, #4, #5, #6, and #7.

To enter the contest, just leave a comment in this post with your bird ID for each number. The person who correctly guesses the most species wins a copy of both The Warbler Guide book (print edition) and the new app as well!

Thanks to Jessica at Princeton University Press for providing me with the book and app.

The deadline to enter the contest is December 24th, and I’ll announce the winners on Christmas Day.

Good luck everyone!















Passenger Pigeon Book Winners!

Congratulation to Bob L. and Jennifer, the winners of this month’s double book giveaway of The Passenger Pigeon by Errol Fuller, published by Princeton University Press (September 2014). Thank you to everyone who entered, and especially to Jessica Pellien from Princeton University Press for making the giveaway possible.


Passenger Pigeon Book Giveaway

PassengerPigeonbookAs part of the commemorations marking the centennial year of the last Passenger Pigeon’s death, Princeton University Press is sponsoring a giveaway of two print copies of the new book, The Passenger Pigeon by Errol Fuller.

Mr. Fuller is a world authority on bird and animal extinction and is an acclaimed artist and writer. His books include Lost Animals: Extinction and the Photographic Record, Extinct Birds, and Dodo: From Extinction to Icon.

To enter the contest, just leave your comment in this post with the name of which extinct bird you find most interesting.

The deadline to enter is December 9th. After two random draws, I’ll announce the winners on Thursday, December 10th.

Some reviews of The Passenger Pigeon to whet your interest:

GrrlScientist’s review for The Guardian
Grant McCreary’s review for The Birder’s Library
Adrian Barnett’s review for New Scientist
Donna’s review for 10,000 Birds

Good luck everyone!

* * *

When I was in Washington, DC earlier this month, I was fascinated by the “Once There Were Billions: Vanished Birds of North America” exhibit at the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History. The display features four of North American’s extinct avian species: the Carolina Parakeet, Heath Hen, Great Auk, and the Passenger Pigeon.

In the Passenger Pigeon display, Martha, the last known of her species, sits mounted on a branch. She died in her cage at the Cincinnati Zoo in 1914.

The exhibit, which runs through January 3, 2016 (extended from the original closing date of October 2015), is well worth seeing if you go to Washington, DC.