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The Ultimate Birders Christmas Wish-list Part 2

Updated: Nov 26, 2020

Over the last week, we had a great response from Part 1 of The Ultimate Birders Christmas Wish-List. As we start week two we are looking forward to showcasing the next seven items on the Christmas list.

As a team of birders, as we put together the list, we looked at things that we would like to see under our Christmas tree. We looked to feature some expected items, but we also tried to think ‘outside the box’ and look beyond what would be on a traditional birders Christmas list. We also looked to cater for different budgets, so almost whatever budget you have, we think you will find something on the list. We think we have come up with some great ideas, so we really hope you enjoy the products that we suggest.

So here are the next seven items on our wish-list:

1) Grumpie Crestie - Adam Cruickshank

I know this has been said far too much already, but 2020 has been a year like no other. Once the New Year’s festivities had wound down, a year lay ahead with boundless possibilities. Suddenly a few months into the year we were thrown a horrible curve ball that none of us expected – Covid-19 which meant that as a nation we experienced a five-week full lockdown. Birders that were used to traveling all over to see special birds, were suddenly constrained to their gardens. What happened as a result is birders started to take note of the birds that were right there on their doorsteps. This is the circumstances that led to Lynne Wilde writing the delightful book, ‘Grumpy Crestie’.

As the subtitle says on the cover of the book – this book is ‘the life and times of a suburban Crested Barbet during the 2020 Lockdown’. This book isn’t an ornithological textbook that looks at the finer scientific related information around birds, instead this is a fun and light read that shows how nature often is a great metaphor for what is happening in life at any given time. As Lynne observes Crestie daily she notes his comings and goings, his interaction with other birds, and then drawing on her imagination she writes a fascinating account of Crestie’s time during lockdown (there is even a love story woven into the narrative). The book is put together from a lot of short daily accounts of Crestie’s life over this time – meaning that the book is a light read that the whole family can enjoy (the text of the book was originally social media posts written by Lynne). This book will be a fun addition to any birder’s bookshelf, and I am sure just like me, you will have many chuckles and moments of joy as your read about this delightful bird!

If you would like to order the book in time for Christmas, please make sure to order it before the end of November. There are 2 options available: the Book for R299 or a Limited Edition of 50 numbered, autographed and inscribed books beautifully packaged in a box for R500 . Signed by Grumpy Crestie and his PA (Lynne).

To order the book or to get more information visit or email

2) Powder Lite Hooded Vest from Columbia Sportswear - Calvin Harris

This product is easy to recommend as I have owned a similar item from Columbia for the past 4 years. The Powder Lite Hooded vest is an incredibly versatile garment in that it can be worn as a layer or your primary item of warm clothing. What makes it a particularly great is that as the name suggests it is very light and is fantastic at keeping you warm. The Columbia designed Omni-Heat lining is similar to that of a survival blanket in keeping your core temperature warm at all times whilst remaining breathable. Whether traversing Sani Pass or a during a fresh winter morning on the coast, this vest is sure to keep you out in the field and birding for longer!