Finding holiday gifts for birders is relatively easy since birders tend to love all things birdy. And there are a lot of birdy gifts out there. The challenge is targeting the type of birder you’re dealing with, and then homing in on just the right choice for them.
Here are my five personal favorites for 2019:
1) If your spouse or someone else in your immediate family is an enthusiastic, shout-it-from-the-rooftops type birder, visit your local motor vehicles office for a personalized license plate.
Nicolas Lund, a.k.a. The Birdist, who writes about birding for the Audubon website, has this to say about spotting personalized plates: “I knew immediately that these people were my people. I didn’t even need to meet them. Personalized plates could be a great way to let everyone know how much you love birds without having to say a word.” Click here for Lund’s entertaining essay.
2) If your birders love to be in fields and forests, they really need tick protection.
Ticks are nasty creatures and cause a host of diseases in addition to Lyme. The best way to stay safe is to wear clothing treated with permethrin, a synthetic version of a chemical produced naturally by the chrysanthemum flower. Permethrin is EPA-approved for clothing, and it kills or disables ticks, mosquitoes, ants, flies, chiggers and midges on contact.
Although you can spray your own clothes with permethrin, there are factory-treated items containing the industry standard 0.52 percent permethrin that will last for 70 washes as opposed to four or so with the spray. So my favorite stocking stuffer this year will be these Insect Shield Sport Crew Socks for $10.95. You can find them for sale here.
3) If your holiday host is a birder, and you need to take a gift, handcrafted notecards from the Etsy marketplace are stunning and original, and you’ll want them all.
4) Everyone loves hummingbirds, and if your enthusiast already has feeders, they’re bound to love a water micro-mister.
Since hummingbirds get enough liquid from nectar, they don’t need to drink water. But they do need water to bathe and keep their feathers in top-flight condition. Add a mister to the mix, and hummingbirds will frolic in the water and be happier than ever before. And a happy hummingbird translates to a happy birder.
This Wild Bird Micro Mister, made by Michelle Sherling of Mesa, Ariz., comes with 20 feet of tubing, a hose bib adapter, Velcro straps, and a brass fitting with micro-mister. It’s sold on Etsy for $24.95 and comes fully assembled, ready to hook up and turn on.
5) If the sky’s the limit on price and your objective is to either convince your birder to marry you; retire and run away with you; or, if you’d like your birder to go outside and stop bothering you, this gift should do the trick: Top-of-the-line binoculars.
The best binoculars for birding offer optimal image clarity, field of view, close focus and are of solid build quality without being too heavy. The top four favorites from Audubon, ranging from $2,100 to $3,000, have got it all covered. Click here for the review.