Nature-Center51 copy
The Library

The Syz Family Nature Lending Library


Welcome to NBNC's Nature Lending Library! We have over 2000 books waiting to be explored, from bird taxonomy to children's nonfiction to tropical travelogues. The Syz Family Library is open to the public, and NBNC members may check out books. Enjoy!

Book Donations

Thank you for your interest in contributing to our growing library. Please read the following intake guidelines and email us before donating books.

  • Except in rare circumstances, we will only accept books published after 1990.
  • Books must be within the subject area of nature, ecology, place-based and environmental education, and related fields. See our reference system below for the categories of books we seek.
  • We cannot accept periodicals or magazines.
  • Books must be in good condition and free of dust or mildew.
  • If you would like to be recognized by name in our catalog, please include a note with your full name in each book.
  • Books must not be in our catalog already.
  • We cannot accept books for book sales, and we do not have the capacity to re-home books. Donated books not fitting these intake criteria will be recycled at the expense of NBNC and its staff.
  • Due to limited space and staff/volunteer capacity, we may not be able to accept all or part of your book donation, but please know that we still appreciate your support.



                111  Astronomy & Astrophysics

                112  Earth Sciences, Geology, Geography

                113  Paleontology, Fossils, Prehistoric Life

                114  Physics, Chemistry, Biochemistry

                115  Biology

115.1 Genetics, Evolution, Extinction

115.2 Animal Behavior

116  Natural History

                                116.1 Nature in Winter

                                116.2 Pollinators & Pollination   


                121  Grasslands

                122  Wetlands

                123  Forests

                124  Deserts

                125  Mountains

                126  Marine & Tidal

                127  Freshwater systems

                128  Human Ecology

129  Conservation & Management


                131  Birds 

131.1 Raptors

131.2 Passerines (songbirds), parrots

131.3 Shorebirds, seabirds, waders, and gulls

131.4 Waterfowls, loons, grebes, and cormorants

131.5 Gallinaceous birds, pigeons, and doves

131.6 Woodpeckers, kingfishers, swifts, and hummingbirds

132  Herpetology (Amphibians & Reptiles)

                                132.1 Salamanders 

                                132.2 Frogs & Toads                      

                                 132.3 Turtles 

                                 132.4 Snakes & Lizards 

133  Fishes

134  Mammals

                134.1 Carnivores

                134.2 Rodents & lagomorphs, and allies

                134.3 Ungulates

                134.4 Bats

                134.5 Marine Mammals

135 Invertebrates   

                135.1  Arthropods  (insects, spiders, crustaceans)

                                135.11 Butterflies & Moths

                                135.12 Beetles

                                135.13 Dragonflies & Damselflies

                                135.14 Bees, Wasps, Ants

                                135.15 Arachnids

                                135.16 Crustaceans

                135.2  Molluscs

                135.3  Worms  (flat, round, segmented)

                135.4  Echinoderms (starfish, sea cucumbers, & kin)


                151  Wildflowers

                152  Trees & Shrubs

                153 Grasses, sedges & rushes

                154 Ferns, mosses & lichens

                155 Fungi


                161  Gardening, Food & Herbs

                162  Green Living & Sustainability

                163  Climate Change, Land Use & Environmental Policy

                164 Outdoor Recreation


                171 Memoir & Biographies

                172 Birding

                173 Photography            


190  FIELD GUIDES (General/Northeast/North America)

191  Birds (General/North America)

191.1 Raptors

191.2 Passerines (songbirds), parrots

191.3 Shorebirds, seabirds, waders, and gulls

191.4 Waterfowls, loons, grebes, and cormorants

191.5 Gallinaceous birds, pigeons, and doves

191.6 Woodpeckers, kingfishers, swifts, and hummingbirds

192  Herpetology (Amphibians & Reptiles)

                                192.1 Salamanders 

                                192.2 Frogs & Toads                      

                                192.3 Turtles 

                                 192.4 Snakes & Lizards 

193  Fishes

194  Mammals

                                194.1 Carnivores

                                194.2 Rodents & lagomorphs, and allies

                                194.3 Ungulates

                                194.4 Bats

                                194.5 Marine Mammals

                195 Invertebrates   

                                195.1  Arthropods  (insects, spiders, crustaceans)

                                                195.11 Butterflies & Moths

                                                195.12 Beetles

                                                195.13 Dragonflies & Damselflies

                                                195.14 Bees, Wasps, Ants

                                                195.15 Arachnids

                                                195.16 Crustaceans

                                195.2  Molluscs

                                195.3  Worms  (flat, round, segmented)

                                195.4  Echinoderms (starfish, sea cucumbers, & kin)

                196  Botany   

                                196.1  Wildflowers

                                196.2  Trees & Shrubs

                                196.3 Grasses, sedges & rushes

                                196.4 Ferns, mosses & lichens

                                196.5 Fungi

                197 Tracking & Sign

                198 Astronomy

200  REGIONAL GUIDES      (Guides based on locale)

                201 North America

                                201.1 Vermont

                                201.2 New England

                                201.3 Northeast

                                201.4 Southeast 

                                201.5 Great Plains & Midwest

                                201.6 Southwest

                                201.7 West & Pacific Northwest

                                201.9 Canada

                202 Central & South America, Caribbean

                203 Africa

                204 Europe

                205 Asia

                206 Australia, Oceania, Antarctica, and the Arctic


                210.1 Natural History & Ecology

                210.2 Outdoor recreation

220  CHILDREN’S NON-FICTION   (alphabetized by author)

230  CHILDREN’S FICTION  (alphabetized by author)

BIPOC Authors Collection


In Spring 2022 we held a book sale of our library overstock and used the revenue to purchase a collection of nature-themed books by Black and Indigenous People of Color (BIPOC) authors. To see what we purchased, click the link below.

John C Robinson Birding for Everyone: Encouraging People of Color to become Birdwatchers
J Drew Lanham The Home Place: Memoirs of a Colored Man's Love Affair with Nature
J. Drew Lanham Sparrow Envy: Field Guide to Birds and Other Beasts
Dorceta Taylor The Rise of the American Conservation Movement: Power, Privilege, and Environmental Protection
Carolyn Finney Black Faces, White Spaces
Ibrahim Abdul Matin Green Deen - What Islam Teaches about Protecting the Planet
Alison Hawthorne Deming; Lauret Savoy The Colors of Nature: Culture, Identity, and the Natural World
Derick Lugo The Unlikely Thru-Hiker
Ingrid Waldron There's Something in the Water
Lauret Savoy Trace: Memory, History, Race, and the American Landscape
Chanda Prescod Weinstein' The Disordered Cosmos: A Journey into Dark Matter
Camille T. Dungy (Editor) Black Nature: Four Centuries of African American Nature Poetry
Linda Hogan; Deena Matzger; Brenda Peterson Intimate Nature: The Bond Between Women and Animals
Clint Carroll Roots of Our Renewal: Ethnobotany and Cherokee Environmental Governance
Wangari Maathai Unbowed: A Memoir
Sherri Mitchell Sacred Instructions: Indigenous Wisdom for Living a Spirit-Based Change
Bobby Lake-Thom Spirits of the Earth: A Guide to Native American Nature Symbols, Stories, and Ceremonies
Mya Thompson Ruby's Birds
Susan Edwards Richmond Bird Count
Carme Lemniscates Birds
Matthew Burgess, Shahrzad Maydani (Contributor) Bird Boy
Julie Flett Birdsong
Elise Guyette Discovering Black Vermont
Jay Griffiths Why Rebel
Joseph Bruchac Bowman's Store
Joseph Bruchac Keepers of the Earth
Fred Wiseman Seven Sisters
Fred Wiseman The Voice of the Dawn
Michael Caduto & Joseph Bruchac Native American Gardening
Winona LaDuke All Our Relations: Native Struggles for Land and Life
Dina Gilio-Whitaker As Long as the Grass Grows: The Indigenous Fight for Environmental Justice, from Colonization to Standing Rock
Robert Goodby A Deep Presence
Colin Calloway The Western Abenakis of Vermont, 1600-1800
Trudy Parker Aunt Sarah: Woman of the Dawnland
bell hooks Teaching to Transgress
Paul Kivel Uprooting Racism: How White People Can Work for Racial Justice
Joe Feagin Racist America: Roots, Current Realities and Future Reparations
Judith Katz White Awareness: Handbook for Anti-Racism Training
Louise Derman-Sparks Teaching/Learning Anti-Racism: A Developmental Approach
Patricia J. Williams Alchemy of Race & Rights: Diary of a Law Professor

"I believe the best way to begin reconnecting humanity's heart, mind, and soul to nature
is for us to share our individual stories."

— J. Drew Lantham

North Branch Nature Center

713 Elm Street
Montpelier, Vermont 05602
(802) 229-6206

Hours: Center Open Monday-Friday 9-4
Trails Open 24/7