Preview Shelf

Backyard songbirds focus of program


As spring approaches, we notice little signs that nature is slowly greening. With the new buds beginning to elongate and prepare to open, many bird species will visit our feeders in the knowledge of the warmer temperatures to come.

Many songbirds you may already know, especially if you stock your bird feeders. Maybe you even participated in the Great Backyard Bird Count with other citizen scientists and the Cornell Lab of Ornithology in February. Perhaps, you know a few birds but would like to learn more about species common to our backyards. CDPL is offering an educational program on “Backyard Songbirds of Indiana” for session three of the Library Naturalist series. Join us to learn about birds that frequent the Midwest, their physical characteristics, and their melodious songs. We will learn how to identify birds based on sight and/or sound. ID checklists will be provided to patrons to take home, as well as an inclusive species checklist for birds of Indiana.

After the program, be sure to visit the second floor for all your birding needs. Two books that are sure to be a premium selection are “Midwestern Birds: Backyard Guide” by Bill Thompson (598.072 Tho) and “Birds of Indiana” by Stan Tekiela (598 Tek). Both offer a quick guide to the birds you see every day. The “Atlas of Breeding Birds of Indiana” by John Castrale (598.2977 Cas) is a publication by the Indiana Department of Natural Resources and “The Birds of Indiana” by Russell Mumford (598.29772 Mum) is a beautiful display of original paintings by William Zimmerman.

Don’t forget about the “National Geographic Backyard Guide to Birds of North America” by Jonathan Alderfer (598.097 Ald) or even “The Backyard Birdwatchers Bible” by Christopher Perrins (598.0723 Per). These books are a great reference for beginner and intermediate backyard bird aficionados. If you are interested in particular types of birds, you should check “North American Wading Birds” by John Netherton (598.34 Net) or “Instant Guide to Freshwater Birds” by Mike Lambert (598.2924 Lam). And if you love birds of prey, check out “North American Birds of Prey” by Scott Weidensal (598.91 Wei), “Raptors: Birds of Prey” by John Hendrickson (598.91 Hen), or “Cranes” by Janice Hughes (598.32 Hug). We also have the “Bluebird Book” by Donald Stokes (598.842 Sto), a resourceful guide for those who want to attract bluebirds to their backyard.

If you prefer to study the behavior and characteristics of certain birds, look into “The Princeton Encyclopedia of Birds” (598 Pri) or “The Lives of Birds: Birds of the World and Their Behavior” by Lester Short (598.251 Sho). For more details on serious birding, check out “Birding Basics” by Noah Strycker (598.072 Str), “National Geographic Birding Essentials” by Jonathan Alderfer (598.07234 Ald), or “A Field Guide to Advanced Birding” by Kenn Kaufman (598 Kau).  

These are just a few of the bird book options available at the Crawfordsville District Public Library.  You can always look into creating your backyard songbird habitat.  For selections about habitat, we have “Birds, Bees, and Butterflies” by Nancy Hajeski (639.978 Haj), “Bird Friendly Backyard” by Julie Zickfoose (639.978 Zic), and “How to Create a Wildlife Garden” by Christine Lavelle (635.967 Lav). We also have “Gardening for Birds, Butterflies, and Bees” (639.9 Gar) with over a hundred DIY backyard projects and answers to the most frequently asked backyard questions.

We hope to see you at the Backyard Songbirds of Indiana program at 10 a.m. Saturday in meeting room A. For specific information regarding additional bird species feel free to contact the Reference department at CDPL at 765-362-2242, ext. 117. 

The library is open 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Thursday; 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday and Saturday; 1-5 p.m. Sunday.


Stephanie Morrissette is an avid naturalist and a library assistant in the Adult Services Department at the Crawfordsville District Public Library.