From School Library Journal
Grade 3-6-A guide to identifying and observing birds that survive in the cold climate of the U.S. and southern Canada. Introductory statements point out that their range may vary due to lost habitat, milder winters in some areas, and the ability of some to adapt to urban environments. A flowing narrative and realistic illustrations combine to present chickadees, cardinals, sparrows, juncos, and more. Species found only in specific regions are carefully identified and have adjacent range maps. The material is well organized, with species grouped under appropriate headings. Birds are drawn to scale in natural tones with distinctive markings for easy identification. Simple backdrops unique to each one's natural habitat are set against white to create an open, airy format. Providing more information than is found in basic identification guides, Lerner's book describes requirements for survival, adaptation to cold temperatures, and diet as well as distinguishing physical characteristics. One section discusses the best seeds for individual species and well-designed feeders that attract birds and discourage squirrels. A valuable selection to include alongside Golden Guides, Peterson's guides, and Rob Hume's Birdwatching (Random, 1993), which includes more detailed advice for observing birds in all seasons.Diane Nunn, Richard E. Byrd Elementary School, Glen Rock, NJ
Copyright 1994 Reed Business Information, Inc.
Gr. 3-5. This handsome introduction to birds in winter begins with a discussion of how their anatomy and behavior help them survive the cold weather in northern climates. The heart of the book presents the physical features, diets, habits, and ranges of more than two dozen relatively common species. Precise watercolor paintings of birds, usually shown as three-quarters life size, appear on nearly every page, making this a beautiful as well as a practical way to learn about wildlife that even city children can observe. Lerner mentions winter bird feeding as a possible reason for the increasingly northern range of many birds but reasssures readers that birds do not rely solely on backyard bird feeders except in extreme conditions. An appended section provides practical advice on food, feeders, and water for backyard birds. An informative guide to the birds that North American children might expect to see at their bird feeders in winter. Carolyn Phelan