SAINT MARTIN/CARIBBEAN – Thousands of copies of a new colouring book are on their way to islands in the Caribbean. Endemic Birds of the West Indies Colouring Book features 50 birds that are found only in the region. The book, also shared as a free download, was made by BirdsCaribbean. It features five birds that can be seen on St. Martin.
“Colouring books are a great way for kids to learn about the unique birds found only in the Caribbean,” explained BirdsCaribbean Executive Director Lisa Sorenson. “They learn what birds look like, where they live and how to protect them, while also having fun.”
The 64-page book is illustrated by Christine Elder, with text by Mark Yokoyama from St. Martin’s Les Fruits de Mer association. Each page features a bird in its habitat, a map showing where it lives and facts about the bird. Fold-out covers show what every bird looks like in colour.
“Art is a great way to connect with nature,” said illustrator Christine Elder. “As a naturalist and an artist, I look closely at nature. It is a joy to find the beauty in birds and turn that into art.”
There are 171 kinds of bird that are found only in the Caribbean and many of them live on just one island. Many of these birds are rare and need protection. Special sections in the book reveal why there are so many unique birds in the West Indies, what threats they face, and how to help them.
“Kids are often amazed to learn that there are birds and other animals that live only on their island,” commented our writer, Mark. “These birds, and this book, can help them discover how special their home is.”
Endemic Birds of the West Indies Colouring Book can be ordered or downloaded for free from BirdsCaribbean.org. Colouring pages, puzzles, and free activities are also available for the 50 endemic birds. The project was made possible by the U.S. Forest Service International Programs, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, and BirdsCaribbean members. Follow Les Fruits de Mer on Facebook or at lesfruitsdemer.com to find out when books will be available on St. Martin.