Thursday, June 16, 2011
1) Kerst, Cary and Steve Gordon. Dragonflies and Damselflies of Oregon: A Field Guide. 2011. OSU Press. Paperback: 304 pages. Price: $24.95 U.S.
SUMMARY: Growing interest in watching and identifying dragonflies and damselflies has sharpened the need for an authoritative resource like Dragonflies and Damselflies of Oregon, a definitive field guide devoted solely to dragonflies and damselflies found in the state.
Cary Kerst and Steve Gordon include information on identification, as well as biology and behavior, using common terms useful to the novice and experienced enthusiast alike. The book features stunning color photographs of male and female of all species currently known in Oregon, along with helpful illustrations and charts with important identification characteristics.
Dragonflies and Damselflies of Oregon presents the life cycle and larval habits of dragonflies and damselflies, along with photographs of the larvae of families. The Oregon range for each species is mapped, and the size range of adults is provided in text and illustration. The book also includes a description of the best sites in Oregon to observe these amazing insects, a useful tool for viewing uncommon species in spectacular settings.
Dragonflies and Damselflies of Oregon is an essential reference for Odonatists, entomologists, birders, butterfly watchers, fishermen, wetland experts, naturalists, gardeners, artists, photographers, and all outdoor enthusiasts. Included in this book are:
* 91 species descriptions, with ID charts
*Full-color photographs of all species known in Oregon, with illustrations and charts
*Description of 30 best locations in Oregon to observe dragonflies
*Tables of illustrations used as pictorial keys
*Useful appendices and index
RECOMMENDATION: A must have for anyone with an interest in the Odonata of Oregon!
2) Davis, Kate, Rob Palmer and Nick Dunlop. Raptors of the West: Captured in Photographs. 2011. Mountain Press. Paperback: 242 pages. Price: $30.00 U.S.
SUMMARY: With their striking looks, keen vision, and hunting prowess, the birds of prey—eagles, hawks, falcons, and owls—have long captured the human imagination. Now Raptors of the West, a collection of some of most remarkable and action-packed raptor photographs ever taken, can inspire your own imagination to take flight. This book, the latest collaboration by award-winning photographers Rob Palmer and Nick Dunlop and author/ photographer Kate Davis, is a glorious photographic ode to the forty-four birds of prey that roam the skies of the American West.
Instead of grouping the birds by type—owls with owls, hawks with hawks—the book has chapters arranged by the habitat type and region where each bird spends the breeding season. Whether you’re enjoying these pages from the comfort of your own armchair or taking a trip to the field you can see which birds to look for in that area—Swainson’s Hawks soar over grasslands next to Prairie Falcons while Cooper’s Hawks share mature forests with Flammulated Owls. While the 400-plus stunning color photographs are enough to set this book apart on their own, Davis’s informative and entertaining text completes the picture.
RECOMMENDATION: Raptor people should enjoy the photography in this coffee-table book.
3) Garrido, Orlando and Arturo Kirkconnell. Aves de Cuba: Field Guide to the Birds of Cuba, Spanish-language Edition. 2011. Cornell University Press. Paperback: 287 pages. Price: $35.00 U.S.
SUMMARY: Cuba is the largest island in the Caribbean, and its large number of endemic bird species makes it an interesting and increasingly popular destination for birders as tourism expands. This Spanish-language edition of the groundbreaking Field Guide to the Birds of Cuba provides all Spanish-speaking visitors to the country and its citizens with an illustrated field guide to the more than 369 bird species of this island nation for the first time. The guide—with its fifty-one color plates, current distribution maps, and comprehensive species descriptions—includes species that are island residents, migrants, and rarities, as well as twenty-six endemics such as the Bee Hummingbird and Cuban Green Woodpecker that can be seen nowhere else. The information provided by the Cuban author team will allow for easy identification of all of Cuba’s birds as well as a greater appreciation of the geography and natural history of this unique island country.
RECOMMENDATION: A must have for Spanish speaking people interested in the birds of Cuba! Also available:
4) Muller-Schwarze, Dietland. The Beaver: Its Life and Impact (second edition). 2011. Cornell University Press. Hardbound: 216 pages. Price: $39.95 U.S.
SUMMARY: Beavers can and do dramatically change the landscape. The beaver is a keystone species—their skills as foresters and engineers create and maintain ponds and wetlands that increase biodiversity, purify water, and prevent large-scale flooding. Biologists have long studied their daily and seasonal routines, family structures, and dispersal patterns. As human development encroaches into formerly wild areas, property owners and government authorities need new, nonlethal strategies for dealing with so-called nuisance beavers. At the same time, the complex behavior of beavers intrigues visitors at parks and other wildlife viewing sites because it is relatively easy to observe.
In an up-to-date, exhaustively illustrated, and comprehensive book on beaver biology and management, Dietland Müller-Schwarze gathers a wealth of scientific knowledge about both the North American and Eurasian beaver species. The Beaver is designed to satisfy the curiosity and answer the questions of anyone with an interest in these animals, from students who enjoy watching beaver ponds at nature centers to homeowners who hope to protect their landscaping. Photographs taken by the authors document every aspect of beaver behavior and biology, the variety of their constructions, and the habitats that depend on their presence.
RECOMMENDATION: A must have for those with an interest in beavers.