Author Topic: Bird/Birding Books Worth Reading  (Read 7311 times)

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Offline The Peregrine Chick

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Bird/Birding Books Worth Reading
« on: May 23, 2008, 13:18 »
If anyone has read any good bird or birding books recently, post them here.

If you have a bird identification guide that you particularly like, please share!!

Offline eagle63_1999

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Re: Bird/Birding Books Worth Reading
« Reply #1 on: July 07, 2008, 12:07 »
Eagle's Suggestions

1. To See Every Bird on Earth: A Father, Son, and a Lifelong Obsession
Author: Dan Koeppel, 2005
 - Biography of a Man obsessed with seeing every bird on Earth. Currently in bookstores. I got my copy at Chapters in the Bargain section.

2. Smithsonian Field Guide to the Birds of North American
Author: Ted Floyd 2008
 -Beautiful photography of every species found in North America, some notations of accidentals and stragglers.  Concise Maps of not just wintering range and breeding range but year round and migration ranges. Also included is a DVD of bird songs of over 100 species, various calls for each species such a mating call, calls in flight, or alarm call.

3. Field Guide to Birds of North America
Author: Edward S. Brinkley 2007
 - This Guide was put out by the National Wildlife Federation in the USA. Another excellant resource filled with pictures of not just adults but Juveniles and various plummages in respects to age and molts.  Has a brief description in the photograph about distinguished marks and other notable things about each species. Includes maps of ranges also.

4.  National Geographic Field Guide to the Birds of North America
Author: Jon L. Dunn and Jonathan Alderfer 2006
 -Although this is a guide with paintings rather than Photos it is still a good resource as it too shows the birds in a natural pose and the different plummages. Maps of ranges included.

5. The Sibley Guide to Birds
Author: David Allen Sibley 2000
  -Another guide of paintings but what makes this guide stand out is not only does Sibley portray the birds of North Amercian he includes flight postions, standing, juvenile and adult plummages.  Another good resource. Good depiction of map of ranges and mirgrations routes.


I have come across a book that is an interesting read.  It is called "The Grail Bird:The Rediscovery of the Ivory-Billed Woodpecker" by Tim Gallagher.  This book is the only book written about the first hand account of the rediscovery of the rare bird.  While many don't believe the bird exists this is a good read. And personally after viewing the video tape of the bird I believe it is the Ivory-Billed Woodpecker.  Just my two cents worth.
« Last Edit: July 07, 2008, 12:17 by The Peregrine Chick »

Offline The Peregrine Chick

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Re: Bird/Birding Books Worth Reading
« Reply #2 on: July 07, 2008, 12:52 »
Peregrine Chick's Suggestion

Peterson Flash Guide / Hawks

Since most raptor sightings are of birds flying overhead, my favourite guide is not actually a book, but rather the Peterson FlashGuide for Hawks.  I like it because its laminated and folds up like a car map.  I can open it up, spread it out or whatever while i'm on the road and I can see what I need to easily.  One side of the guide is the standard bird-sitting-on-a-branch illustrations, the other are what they look like as they are flying overhead.   And it includes all the raptors you are likely to see in North America.

I have five copies that I thought I might give away as prizes when I got them a couple of years ago, if anyone is interested in buy one and in the process, support the Project, I'll put them on the website tonight and you can buy them via PayPal or credit card - or you can email me and I can put one aside for you and wait for you to send a personal cheque or a postal money order.  I have to check the price (its been awhile) but it will be on the website tonight.  I'll put the link to the e-store page here when its up.

I love my flash guide, I find it very handy!

Offline eagle63_1999

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Re: Bird/Birding Books Worth Reading
« Reply #3 on: July 07, 2008, 12:56 »
Not sure I've heard tell of that but what a great idea.  I think raptors, like sparrows, and gulls and sandpipers, have to be the most confusing and diffcult to identify in the field.

Offline ballywing

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Re: Bird/Birding Books Worth Reading
« Reply #4 on: July 07, 2008, 19:26 »
That DOES sound great! Especially for those who are novices (moi) at this bird stuff!  ;D

Offline Pchemist

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Re: Bird/Birding Books Worth Reading
« Reply #5 on: July 07, 2008, 19:31 »
They used to make (probably still do, but I have no reason to have one) a similar thing to identify planes flying overhead.  Birds is more fun.  :)

Offline eagle63_1999

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Re: Bird/Birding Books Worth Reading
« Reply #6 on: July 07, 2008, 19:36 »
I second that Pchemist, Birds are a WHOLE lot more fun  ;D

Offline Saoirse

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Re: Bird/Birding Books Worth Reading
« Reply #7 on: July 15, 2009, 14:54 »
I've already spoken with TPC about the Peterson Flashguide but note that there's also a Peterson Field Guide to birds of North America. Saw it in McNally Robinson and, in the very short time I had, it looked to be fairly decent. Is anyone familiar with it?

Offline eagle63_1999

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Re: Bird/Birding Books Worth Reading
« Reply #8 on: July 15, 2009, 15:41 »
Yes Saoirse,I have it. It is a good book.  It puts his western and eastern field guides together in one book.  I think it is around 26-30 dollars?  Don't quote me cause I got mine at Costco lol  Some people like photographs and they are good but Roger's paintings are exactly the colour of the bird as far as I am concerned.

Offline debc52

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Re: Bird/Birding Books Worth Reading
« Reply #9 on: July 15, 2009, 16:25 »
I agree - although we just have the eastern version. (That is WPG by the way whatever our "Gateway to the West" may promise.)  ::)

Just make sure you get one that has the pictures with the writeups. Ours has all the pictures in the middle and you are forever flipping back and forth.  :P

Offline Saoirse

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Re: Bird/Birding Books Worth Reading
« Reply #10 on: July 15, 2009, 17:59 »
Thanks, Eagle and Deb -- I've just gone ahead and ordered a used one through Amazon. The one in McNally was $35. Now I can hardly wait for it to arrive! I appreciate your help.

Offline birdcamfan

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Re: Bird/Birding Books Worth Reading
« Reply #11 on: August 06, 2009, 15:10 »
Hi TPC. My Peterson Flash Guide came in the mail today, thank you. I am now convinced that it was either a Peregrine or a Cooper's that I saw on Saturday. When I said that it was low, I meant like 20 floors up or so, but close enough to see the markings. That being said, I have seen Cooper's Hawks close to there before so that's more likely what it was. Thanks for the guide it's small enough to go in my purse. Now if I could just remember to take my binocs everywhere with me..

Offline Pam

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Re: Bird/Birding Books Worth Reading
« Reply #12 on: August 18, 2009, 21:21 »
Pam's Suggestions

Interesting reads about folks who have written about attempting a "Big Year" in birding....

The Big Year by Mark Obmascik

Kingbird Highway by Ken Kaufman

Offline BirdLover

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Re: Bird/Birding Books Worth Reading
« Reply #13 on: August 18, 2009, 21:24 »
Thanks Pam.  Will be heading to the library when I get back to Brandon !!!  And if they don't have them there, will get them to inter-library loan them for me.  Did you know about that Deb????

Offline debc52

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Re: Bird/Birding Books Worth Reading
« Reply #14 on: August 19, 2009, 13:51 »
Thanks, BL. Knew they could loan them from one branch to another in Winnipeg but didn't know I could get them from another city altogether. Will have to try that!