Gifts for the bird and nature lovers in your life

Gift ideas For Christmas/birthday/anniversary...

If you know someone who loves nature in general or birds in particular, chances are they'll love these gift ideas I’ve sourced for you to save you some time. Some of the presents are a little unusual, and all have prices to suit all pockets (the average prices is well under £20), but they are sure to surprise and delight, which is - surely - the aim of any gift we give?

Choose from Audubon’s List

Audubon’s Christmas list

Audubon’s Christmas list

The Scottish Countryman has long been an admirer of Audubon, the artist and naturalist who named the Harris Hawk after his friend and financial backer, and the National Audubon Society is a nonprofit conservation organisation that protects birds and the places they live.

Audubon’s comprehensive gift list for 2018 includes suggestions for serious birders as well as ideas for children and anyone who likes nature. I particularly liked the beautiful AVES playing cards - each has a different hand-drawn bird on the card face - and have added “The Feather Thief” book to my own wish-list. The full list of Audubon’s recommendations has a whopping 47 ideas so you’re sure to find something you’d love to give!

(Images below are all clickable and will link you to Amazon. If you buy through this link, I make a small commission at no extra cost to you.)

The best book I read all year

(Images below are clickable and will link you to Amazon. If you buy through this link, I make a small commission at no extra cost to you.)

Simon Barnes has written on many topics, including horses, sports (especially cricket) and the countryside, but his book ‘The Meaning of Birds’ is my favourite of his so far and my best book this year.

This is a fascinating and enlightening book full of quiet humour and mesmerising descriptions and you’ll learn about everything from Darwin’s pigeons to how the colour of a feather dictates its physicality (white feathers are the most easily damaged, dark feathers are strongest). This book is not just suitable for those interested in birds, but for anyone who enjoys learning in general and nature in particular.

Another Simon Barnes book to consider, with a more general theme, is ‘Re-wild Yourself’ - an idea very much in tune with The Scottish Countryman’s work! Speaking of which…

A gift voucher for an archery or falconry experience with The Scottish Countryman

A gift voucher from The Scottish Countryman

A gift voucher from The Scottish Countryman

What better gift for a nature or bird lover than the opportunity to spend time outdoors with The Scottish Countryman?

Past recipients of our vouchers have loved their visits to our centre near Crail in Fife. One visitor described their bird of prey experience as ‘truly wonderful’, a phrase we’ve added to the voucher, and you can find other reviews here.

Our vouchers are valid for up to 12 months and we can email the voucher to you or to your recipient.

Purchase a Scottish Countryman voucher from just £10 and our Intro Experience is just £20.

Etsy ideas

Etsy is home to crafters, makers and collectors and I have links that will take you to filtered lists, one for bird-themed gifts and the other for nature-themed presents. Both lists feature UK sellers who offer handmade gifts under £20 that can be customised, gift-wrapped and sent with free shipping. At the time I extracted these lists (December 05, 2018) there were more than 800 items on the birds list and almost 250 on the nature list, so plenty of ideas for you to choose from!

Gifts based on our biggest stories of 2018

This year some of our posts on Social Media attracted lots of attention. They obviously caught our audiences’ imagination and were shared multiple times so we’re using these as inspiration for our final selection of suggested gifts.

First up, the arrival of Argyll our Snowy Owl prompted plenty of interest and led to us creating The Scottish Countryman’s Owl Group on Facebook. In the Group, we showed photos and videos of Argyll’s astonishing progress from fluffy owl baby to full-grown male and he’s become a firm favourite in our team of owls, which also includes Eagle owls and a Barn owl.

Still in his first year’s plumage, Argyll’s got lots of black barring on his feathers but next year he’ll moult them out and become pure white, as all adult male Snowies are. (Not sure what that makes Hedwig in the collector’s plush-toy version below…?!)

Next up, ‘A Murmuration of Starlings’ - a book on collective nouns. Always a source of entertainment, this gift is inspired by our own starling population. In mid-summer our hedge became the chosen roost for flocks of local starlings so we were treated to nightly shows of hundreds - and possibly thousands - of birds circling overhead in marvellous changing patterns before dropping into the Leylandii. These patterns, known as murmurations, are astonishing to see and a video we took received lots of likes on our Instagram grid.

And finally, the story of Harold! Do you remember Harold, the Racing Pigeon? We posted several updates about Harold on our Facebook page and his story got lots of attention! Pigeons also feature in Simon Barnes’ book, above, in which he points out how beautiful they are - as the calendar I found for you, with its beautiful collection of images, shows.

(Images below are all clickable and will link you to Amazon. If you buy through this link, I make a small commission at no extra cost to you.)

I really hope you like these suggestions of presents you can buy for someone who loves birds and/or nature.

Let me know if you end up buying any of the suggested gifts and - more importantly - what your recipient thought about their gift! Do also use the comments section below to share any other nature- or bird-themed gifts you've found and would recommend.

Thanks for reading and have a wonderful Christmas!

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