Monday, August 2, 2010

New Titles

 1) Arlott, Norman. Birds of the West Indies. 2010. Princeton University Press. Paperback: 240 pages. Price: $24.95 U.S.

SUMMARY: The West Indies, stretching from Grand Bahama in the north to Grenada in the south, is home to more than 550 bird species. Birds of the West Indies is the complete guide for identifying all of the diverse birds in these island territories. The guide's 80 vivid color plates are accompanied by succinct text focusing on key field-identification characteristics, and distribution maps for all species are conveniently located at the back of the guide for handy reference.
     Birds of the West Indies is the perfect companion for birders, wildlife enthusiasts, and holiday-seekers interested in this area of the world:
1) 80 color plates featuring more than 550 bird species.
2) Concise text concentrates on field-identification characteristics.
3) Detailed distribution maps for each species ( in a section separate from the text and plates).
4) Easy-to-use and accessible--the ideal field guide.

RECOMMENDATION: For those with an interest in Neotropical birds. I prefer Herbert Raffaele et al.'s Birds of West Indies (also available from Princeton University Press):


2) Simpson, Ken and Nicolas Day. Birds of Australia (Eighth Edition). 2010. Princeton University Press. Flexibinding: 381 pages. Price: $39.50 U.S.

SUMMARY: This is the completely revised eighth edition of Australia's best-selling field guide, with close to 600,000 copies sold. In 132 color plates of remarkable beauty and precision, Nicolas Day captures the details of all 780 of Australia's birds. Succinct text by Ken Simpson and other experts gives key points of identification for every species, as well as information about the birds' abundance and patterns of movement. Detailed color distribution maps accompany the species text.
     This updated edition includes three replacement plates, eleven additional rare species, taxonomic revisions, and additional color as well as black-and-white illustrations. The Vagrant Bird Bulletin contains illustrations and a map for all rare species. A useful breeding summary for every species gives immediate information regarding their annual breeding cycles.
     All readers, whether beginning or experienced birdwatchers, ornithologists, students, or travelers, will find Birds of Australia an unrivaled companion for discovering the unique birdlife of this remarkable continent.
RECOMMENDATION: I prefer the smaller The Slater Field Guide to Australian Birds (2nd edition) for field work. For at home, I prefer: The Field Guide to the Birds of Australia (eighth edition) by Graham Pizzey and Frank Knight.

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