6 Essential Bird Watching Gear

It’s not the easiest thing to do, but investing in the right gear and getting some practice and education will make it easier and more enjoyable for you! The ten essentials every bird watcher should own binoculars, a field guide, a bird book, an identification chart, camera, sunscreen, bug spray, snacks, and water. 

Must-Have Gear for Bird Watching


The first essential is arguably one of the most important. Binoculars are absolutely necessary if you want to see birds up close. There are plenty of great options out there that can offer different magnification levels as well as eye relief which makes them much more comfortable to use. A good pair of binoculars can be used for many other activities such as sporting events and even concerts and plays and shows.

occer 12×25 Compact Binoculars

occer 12x25 Compact Binoculars with Clear Low Light Vision
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These compact binoculars are perfect for avid nature watchers and travelers alike. So when you’re out in the wilderness, step up your game with these 12x25mm high-powered binoculars!

Quality FMC Broadband coating helps clarify images without reducing color fidelity so you can get a crisp image anywhere on land or water. You’ll also love that these binoculars have adjustable eyecups which fit over large lenses or not – perfect for eyeglass wearers who want to get close to their subject while still being able to bring it into focus, but everyone can appreciate such a quick and easy adjustability.


Monoculars can be really helpful and they’re more compact than binoculars, but if you prefer a wider field of view then binoculars are your best bet. Many monoculars can be used as a spotting scope which is another great option for bird watchers to have at their disposal.

Field Guides

Another essential is a field guide, which can be used to help identify the bird you are watching. The best kinds of guides include photos along with descriptions, although there are other options like audio or video ones that can also be quite helpful (although more expensive).

Identification Charts & Bird Books

The next step in learning about birds is usually identifying them through their calls and songs. You can do this easily by purchasing an identification chart that will allow you to record what you hear so you can look it up later. Also, having good reference manuals on hand can also be very beneficial as they will allow you to look up birds by the time of year, physical characteristics and so much more.

You may not need this for every kind of bird you try to track down but some specific kinds might require it for identification purposes. It is recommended that you carry a small camera with you just in case. This way if you see something interesting, you can take photos or videos of it and share them with others who are interested in learning more about birds. 

Sunscreen and Bug Spray

Sunscreen and bug spray are helpful to bring along especially during the hotter months when flies and mosquitoes are more prevalent. It is always better to protect yourself from harmful bugs and insects by covering up and using sprays to keep yourself safe.

Snacks & Water

If your favorite activity involves hiking or camping then snacks and water are great options to have on hand. 

Food can be very helpful but it isn’t always necessary. If you are just starting out then carrying some granola bars, nuts or fruit with you can provide a quick pick me up if you start to feel hungry or thirsty. Keeping yourself hydrated is one of the most important things you can do to keep your energy up and staying healthy.


As you can see, there are a lot of different pieces of equipment that bird watchers need. These aren’t necessary for everyone but they definitely make it more enjoyable and easier to do! The only accessory you need is the binoculars or monoculars.

It is important that you learn about birds before you start trying to track them down.

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