New bird watching field guide unveiled at Bay Beach Wildlife Sanctuary

Field Guide to 100 Birds in Wisconsin and Upper Michigan, February 15, 2018 (WLUK/Eric Peterson)

GREEN BAY (WLUK) -- According to the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, more than 46 million Americans consider themselves to be birdwatchers.

And now, a fresh field guide is making it easier for young birders to follow along in a brand-new bird book.

"Find a person with a book," said Amy Milz, teacher.

In a nature-based classroom at Bay Beach Wildlife Sanctuary in Green Bay,

"I saw something," said one student.

Twenty four-year old kindergarten students are eager to experience their daily dose of bird watching 101.

"Oh, there's some birds! I will try to find a blue jay. Oh, a blue jay, that's a good one," said another student.

The students have used The Field Guide to 100 Birds of Wisconsin and Upper Michigan for a couple weeks. The book made its public debut on Thursday.

"The birds are easily identified through the photos. And the format itself with the binding, the heavy paper, makes it a very durable and easy book to use," said Mike Reed, Bay Beach Wildlife Sancturary Director.

And bird watchers say releasing the field guide now ties in with the 21st Annual Backyard Bird Count. The four-day event begins Friday.

"You can bird watch absolutely anywhere you want. You can do it inside your warm house, and look out your window, you can go on an extravagant long hike. This backyard bird count is extremely critical to better understand bird populations not just here in Wisconsin, but around the world," said Erin Giese, Northeastern Wisconsin Audubon Society President.

Giese says last year, 160,000 birdwatchers from about 100 countries submitted observations online.

Back in the classroom, the bird watching continues.

"It's a great way to introduce children, or if you're just even retired, and you just want to start bird watching, it would be a great introduction for you," said Reed.

The field guide is a partnership between Bay Beach and the American Transmission Company.

The company paid for the 2,000 books.

You can get a copy at the Wildlife Sanctuary for a suggested donation of $5.

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