Did you know that the Evanston campus is considered a "hot spot" for bird watching, especially in the Spring and Fall seasons as millions of birds migrate along the Mississippi Flyway. According to eBird.org, a community science website and app dedicated to bird watching and ornithology, over 280 species of birds have been spotted on campus! To encourage community connection with campus nature, Northwestern University Libraries and sustainNU have created this guide to bird watching and offer bird watching kits that students, faculty, and staff and can borrow for free (see below). To get started, please read this page carefully and explore the other pages of this guide to help you learn more about birds and to get involved on campus and beyond!
There are four (4) bird watching kits available to be checked out from Circulation at Main Library. Each bird watching kit includes high-quality binoculars, neck strap, lens cloth, instruction manual, and a QR code that links to this guide. To check out a bird watching kit either visit Circulation on the first floor of Main Library or request one on NUsearch.
If you're new to bird watching, read this short article from Audubon, "How to Get Started Birding."
Using binoculars for the first time can take some getting used to, but here are some helpful steps for getting started.
Binoculars are for bird and wildlife watching only (though looking at the stars and moon with them is cool too!).
While there are many wonderful spaces to see birds on campus, the glass buildings can be a hazard for birds. Indeed, it is estimated that 1 billion birds die from window strikes globally each year. If you encounter an injured bird, please contact the Chicago Bird Collision Monitors and follow these helpful steps.