The Naturalist’s Notebook – an Observation Guide and Five Year Calendar Journal for Tracking Changes in the Natural World around You is an attractive hardcover book that is good for anyone who loves outdoor.

No matter the interest, either in plants, climate, gardening, birds, or other outdoor activities, the Naturalist’s Notebook got it all covered.

About the Authors of the Book

The Naturalist’s Notebook was written by both Nathaniel Thoreau Wheelwright and Bernd Heinrich. The authors both hail from the world of academia and are both professors.

The Naturalist’s Notebook was written with the aim to help gardeners, birders, naturalists, etc., record life events and the timing of those natural occurrences. The Naturalist’s Notebook contains the author’s experience of natural phenomenon – phenomena like birds incubating their egg, plants blooming alongside birds, and so many others.

About the Notebook

The Naturalists Notebook is a book, more like a document designed to help one appreciate his or her natural surroundings. The pages of the Naturalist’s Notebook are made of thick paper. This paper type makes it excellent for keeping records.

The Notebook contains many encouraging and practical help. Not only that, but there are also personal discoveries from the two authors that have studied nature throughout their lives. So do not neglect this helpful idea in this book as it can help you in your nature study.

The Notebook engages in a conversational style and makes good use of illustration.

The first hundred pages are categorized into six chapters, which are:

Chapter one: Being Attentive I

Chapter two: How to Become an Observant Naturalist II

Chapter three: How to Become an Observant Naturalist III

Chapter four: The Naturalist’s Toolbox IV

Chapter five: Simple Experiments as a Way of Learning V

Chapter six: Knowing Nature Where You Live VI

Let’s consider these chapters, one after the other.

Chapter One: Being Attentive

The chapter is built on the citizen scientist’s observation from their youth. The comparison of historical works of the previous centuries (that is, The Natural History of Selborne (1788) and Handbook of Nature Study (1911) is made with the digital age of recording observation.

The two formats have their values and benefits but the authors like the “old fashioned way” of recording observation. In this chapter, the way of recording short observation and the means to be an experienced observer are all explained and covered.

Chapter Two and Three: How to Become an Observant Naturalist

These two chapters are devoted to how you can become a trainer or observer of nature in a practical way. These chapters highlight and describe eight key elements needed to develop the above skill. These are: cultivate curiosity, learn the names of plants and animals surrounding you.

Familiarize yourself with the basic ecology, go on nature walks and take notes; ask why, use your sense of touch, smell, hear along with sight, conduct a simple experiment and also, teach others.

Bernd shares his personal experience on how he uses these skills and also how he made use of drawings to connect with nature and record his observations.

Chapter Four: The Naturalist’s Toolbox

The chapter shows the tools needed to make observations, which are: clothing, camera, binoculars, thermometer, pencil, and journal. This chapter focuses on how you can also observe and make brief recordings of events in two to three phrases.

The chapter also provides the recommended formats for timelines, tables, and graphs in case you are more detailed as a citizen scientist.

Chapter Five: Simple Experiments as a Way of Learning

This chapter has a conversational style with the author. It explains the four seasons and the simple experiments he carried out – experiments such as taking note of bird behavior during the winter season, planting seeds, and the diet of earthworms in spring; the bumblebee flower and spider diets in summer and fall.

Chapter Six; Knowing Nature Where You Are

Whether you live in an urban or rural area, a naturalist can still observe. Wherever you are, take note of your surroundings, slow down, observe, and ask questions, record daily observations. It will help to create a sense of unity, as well as understanding.

Note Bernd’s words: “without the attainment of familiarity, the significant remains invisible.”

The Five Year Journal

The last hundred pages are a five-year calendar journal that is for you to use in recording nature observation. The space left on the page is mainly for you to record your daily observation in writing and also to draw.

The five-year journal, however, contains no room for drawing. This is because the book is illustrated with sketches and drawings of Bernd attained by his sixty years of studying nature. So you can have a separate sketchbook to make your drawings along with your notebook.

After this five year journal, the Naturalist Notebook ends with:

  • · Personal Glossary for Symbols and Abbreviations
  • · Useful Books
  • · Metric Conversion
  • · Timelines for Species and Events you follow
  • · Acknowledgement
  • · About the author.


The Naturalist’s Notebook is a good resource for gardeners, birders, students to record their observations. The notebook offers all in one; the prose, the illustrations, instructions, experience, and space for your daily record, all in one journal.

Whether you are an experienced journal keeper or you are just looking for a better way to record your observations. The Naturalist’s Notebook is just right for you!

Available on Amazon

The 208-page volume Naturalist’s Notebook is published by the Storey, and you can buy it at the bookstore or through the Amazon website for just 19.95 dollars.


The Naturalist’s Notebook is a good book for all who are ready to level up your nature study. The Notebook helps one appreciate the efforts of other naturalists such as Lewis and Clark, Henry David, and others.

It is also a reminder that the natural world is important, and it broadens our personal awareness and appreciation of the changes and seasons. The Naturalist’s Notebook helps you strengthen your love for your natural world that surrounds you and also helps you improve your observation skills.

Get this guided nature journal, and it will help you develop a habit of learning the creations of God in full! For more details, please click the link to the images below or one on the top. Thank you for your kind visit.

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