Thursday, March 21, 2013

New Titles

1) Duncan, James R.. The Complete Book of North American Owls. 2013. Thunder Bay Press. Paperback: 192 pages. Price: $19.95 U.S.

SUMMARY: The Complete Book of North American Owls offers a rare, up-close look at one of the world’s most intriguing birds, the owl. From the silent, lethal swoop of a great horned owl as it swerves between northern pines to make a kill, to the pert bobbing of a pygmy owl as it focuses on an intruder, the habits of each species are vividly described.
     This book includes:
* Each species has its own extensive introduction that explains its hunting techniques, courtship rituals, nesting habits, territorial calls, and specialized traits.
* Six pages of stunning full-color images devoted to each owl capture the elusive bird in its various forms from juvenile to adult, male/female, and also in flight.

     The Complete Book of North American Owls celebrates these dramatic and stealthy nocturnal hunters and showcases twenty owl species in extensive detail.
RECOMMENDATION: Some of the range maps could use some work and the taxonomy follows Konig and Weick's Owls: A Guide to the Owls of the World instead of The A.O.U. Check-list of North American Birds. Still this book will make a good general introduction to the owls of the region.

2) Frenz, Bert. A Birder's Guide to Belize. 2012. American Birding Association. Paperback: 374 pages. Price: $29.95 U.S.
SUMMARY: Why bird in Belize? Well, the birds of course. The spectacularly colorful are the first to grab your attention; and it is the appeal of finding another species at every turn in the trail. Belize's scenic beauty, its Mayan history, and its fascinating and elusive wildlife and the dense beautiful jungles are all reasons to visit.
     This guide covers over 100 sites in detail, with directions, description including trails, conditions, vendors, and facilities such as toilets, accomodations, and exhibits; birding strategy for arranging the visit, finding birds, and optimizing time; pointer to appropriate ecoregion (Appendix A); habitat; concerns, such as safety, difficulty, and access; fees, for entrance, tours, or services; contacts, including name, address, phone and fax numbers, e-mail, website; GPS coordinates to aid in locating sites; location and directions; map(s) illustrating the directions or the site layout; and a list of key species found at the site.
RECOMMENDATION: A must have for those birding Belize!

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