Wild & Wonderful Wednesday: Birds



A great way to help children understand the diversity of the natural world, World of Birds combines the delightful and spot-on illustrations of Kim Kurki with the expertise of the National Wildlife Federation.


A beautifully illustrated guide to birds that is perfect for budding ornithologists. While the book contains illustrations rather than photographs, the illustrations are detailed enough to help identify the different types of birds. The book is organized by habitat; fields, woodlands, wetlands, and deserts.  I liked this organization because if a reader knows what to look for in a particular location.  The author/illustration focuses on some of the most common birds and bird types.  She covers the major points of interest about each bird including: coloring and size (including male and female differences), habitats found in, feeding and nesting habits as well as unusual or especially interesting facts.  For example, cardinals are known to sing at any time of year not just in the spring like most birds. Similarities and differences between related species are also explored.  The book is beautifully designed and highly appealing.  I did find a couple of minor errors but nothing major.  A book well worth buying for the young bird-lover.


A delightful exploration of the incredibly variety of nests birds build for their babies, illustrated by a Caldecott Honoree.

Mama built a little nest
inside a sturdy trunk.
She used her beak to tap-tap-tap
the perfect place to bunk.

There are so many different kinds of birds; and those birds build so many different kinds of nests to keep their babies cozy. With playful, bouncy rhyme, Jennifer Ward explores nests large and small, silky and cottony, muddy and twiggy; and all the birds that call them home!


A beautifully written and illustrated book that is well suited to reading out loud.  Not only is the book quite informative about birds and the different types of nests they build but the poetry flows in a pleasing way. Each page explores a different type of bird and a different type of nest with a short poem and a brief explanation of the type of nest. The information is intriguing, I had no idea there were so many different types of nests.  I think my favorite was the hummingbird nest that is tiny, but built with spider webbing so the nest will stretch as the nestlings grow.  Jenkin's illustrations are amazing as they always are, the details in the nests and birds made for great enjoyment on my part.  A winner all the way around.



Above the treetops of Puerto Rico flies a flock of parrots as green as their island home. . . . These are Puerto Rican parrots. They lived on this island for millions of years, and then they nearly vanished from the earth forever. 

Puerto Rican parrots, once abundant, came perilously close to extinction in the 1960s due to centuries of foreign exploration and occupation, development, and habitat destruction. In this compelling book, Roth and Trumbore recount the efforts of the scientists of the Puerto Rican Parrot Recovery Program to save the parrots and ensure their future. Woven into the parrots’ story is a brief history of Puerto Rico itself, from before the first human settlers to the present day. 

With striking collage illustrations, a unique format, and engaging storytelling, PARROTS OVER PUERTO RICO invites readers to witness the amazing recovery efforts that have enabled Puerto Rican parrots to fly over their island once again.


It's not hard to see why this book has won several awards.  Not only are the illustrations beautifully done, but the text is very readable and informative.  Cut-paper collage is a form of illustration that amazes me.  The incredible detail and color that Roth uses in this book is awe-inspiring.  A great example of what picture book nonfiction should be.  The story is also one that needs to be told as it demonstrates the effect that people have on their environment for both good and ill.


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