Inspiring discovery through free access to biodiversity knowledge.

The Biodiversity Heritage Library improves research methodology by collaboratively making biodiversity literature openly available to the world as part of a global biodiversity community.
BHL also serves as the literature component of the Encyclopedia of Life .

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You can follow us on Twitter at @FieldBookProj

The Field Book Project Blog

View blog posts by topic:

Beyond the Field Book Project
Collection Highlights
Reptiles and Amphibians
What's Happening?

Help Transcribe field books!

Through the Smithsonian Transcription Center, hundreds of field books from the Project have been transcribed by volunteers and citizen scientists. If you want to sign up to transcribe collections items, or just want to see the field books are currently being transcribed, visit the Field Book Project at Smithsonian Transcription Center.

Flickr Sets

The Smithsonian Flickr stream has included several collections featuring images from the Field Book Project:
E. W. Nelson and E. A. Goldman
Martin Moynihan
Vernon and Florence Bailey
Helmut Karl Buechner
Pelagic Birds
André Goeldi Field Notes Collection
Mary Agnes Chase Field Books
Field Book Project Blog Images
Field Books of Waldo LaSalle Schmitt, 1887-1977
Pacific Ocean Biological Survey Program
Field Book Lantern Slides
Albert Spear Hitchcock Field Books


Field Book Project educational materials are free to use for educational purposes and not for commercial use.

Create Your Own Field Book Activity and Lesson Plan

Additional Resources:
  • Encyclopedia of Life, a free online biodiversity resource, has tools, online projects and more for students and teachers on their Learning and Education page.
  • Advanced classroom technology for bird watching: eBird by the Cornell Lab of Ornithology and National Audubon Society.
  • Search the USDA Plant Database by state to get an idea of what plants are found in your state. Check off the state you live in, leave the search box blank, and click enter to receive a list of plants in your state.
*Is your class participating in this activity? Let us know! Email us with the subject line "Create Your Own Field Books."

Using Photographs in Scientific Observation

This activityis designed to demonstrate the ways scientists utilize photography to document field observations. Students learn to recognize and compare photographs as well as what characteristics a photograph must have to be a good source of observation information.

What Can You Learn From a Fish Drawing?

This activity can be used with the "Create Your Own Field Book Lesson Plan and Activity" above or on its own. This is a fun exercize designed to illustrate the ways scientists use sketches to augment their field notes and the types of information they record. Students will also have a chance to create their own field sketch.

Collectors in the Field Quiz

Can you identify these field book authors? Test your knowledge with our quiz!

Answers for the quiz are available on our blog
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