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Offers advice for creating a landscape that will attract birds year-round, with information on plant selection, soil, birdhouses, water gardens, and predators.
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Gardeners often want to enhance their gardens by attracting wildlife. Using Briggs's book, even those with little space can encourage a wide variety of visitors. Briggs's science background and writing skills make this a worthwhile guide that subtly calls attention to habitat loss while providing meaningful ways gardeners can help. Chapters are organized by habitats: woodlands, wetlands, grasslands, and rocklands. Briggs is thorough, giving brief historical and ecological background on each habitat along with suggestions on how to re-create it at home. Unfortunately, since her book was originally published in Britain, her plant lists may be of limited use to American gardeners. Unlike Briggs, natural history writer Zickefoose, whose work often appears in Bird Watcher's Digest, includes plant lists for various U.S. regions, though her emphasis is on habitats for birds. There are the usual recommendations on plants and water features, but also included are detailed chapters on housing, feeding, and creating hospitable habitats with living fences, brush piles, and snags. Zickefoose openly discusses the ugly side of attracting birds (disease problems, window-kills, predators, and pests). Points are punctuated by sidebars in which birders relate their experiences. The final chapter comprises observations by naturalists and authors across the United States. Recommended for all public libraries and essential for those lacking Sally Roth's Attracting Birds to Your Backyard (Rodale, 1998). Harris's less-detailed book is designed for those who wish to attract birds and butterflies but who have little knowledge of gardening or wildlife. Harris offers beginners a nice section on planning gardens and a short, attractive directory of plants. One strength of this book is its large color illustrations depicting wildlife and illustrating the steps taken in creating such projects as trellises, backyard blinds, and homemade bird feeders. An attractive book recommended for libraries needing to update. Bonnie Poquette, Shorewood P.L., WI
Copyright 2002 Reed Business Information, Inc.
Want warblers in your wisteria? Sparrows in your spirea? Attracting birds can be as simple as scattering seed, but dedicated gardeners interested in making a more substantial commitment to sustaining and sheltering birds will find an abundance of practical information in this comprehensive guide to creating welcoming habitats, from wildflower meadows to wild mounds of brush, from berry patches to backyard ponds, features easy to incorporate in any garden design. With expertise and enthusiasm, the authors offer incisive, in-depth material on such critical topics as thwarting predators, installing water features, and constructing feeding stations. Augmented by handy "quick reference" charts and topical Q&A sections, much of the guide is organized by "ecoregions," since specific geographic areas support different bird species. Extolling both their beauty and their benefits, this is one garden handbook that is positively "for the birds." Carol Haggas
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved
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