If you are thinking of taking up birding, July is not the optimum month…but it's great for butterflying…that's the term for looking for butterflies. On a sunny, not so windy, day, anywhere from nine am to three, grab your binoculars and traipse out to any field or garden with wildflowers.
This is prime time for the six legged insects. Your binoculars will need to have a close focus to under ten feet and it will help to have a guide to identify the little beauties.
Believe it or not there is a North American Butterfly Association and they have a web site at www.naba.org. Gary Fellers has gone beyond the call of duty at that site and come up with criteria for the best butterfly (and birding?) binoculars he has used to spy on his local butterflies.
One field guide you might want to check out is "Butterflies through Binoculars" by Jeffery Glassberg. And if you want to do your butterflying close to home, plant butterfly loving bushes in your yard. There is the eponymous butterfly bush (Buddleia davidii), as well as perennials phlox, aster and daisies for a start. Binoculars will get you a butterfly's eye view of these beautiful garden invaders this July.