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Old 29-10-09, 03:03 PM
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Originally Posted by Dave H View Post
I've been using the RSPB Pocket Birds book for a while.
Based on your recommendations, I thought that I would like a copy of "Mitchell Beazley, Birdwatcher's Pocket Guide"
I found a few copies available on Amazon, in the used section. For some reason, they are nearly all priced at 1p (with p&p 2.75).
It arrived today, very nice. A 1988 print version. I will need to remember to take my strong reading glasses on outings.

(In the past few months we've bought a butterfly guide and a night sky guide on the same deal.)
Now that's got to be the bargain of the week Dave.......I'm glad you're pleased with it and your other similar purchases!
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Old 29-10-09, 04:18 PM
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Hi Bassit,I have a Collins Birds of Britain&Europe small book I take when I'm out,at home I have "David Alderton,Encyclopedia of European Birds"and a old"Reader's Digest,Birds of Britain" would like some more books as the same bird can look diffrent in diffrent books(well that's my excuse!)
is that the collins nature guide series written by J.Nicolai D Singer And K Wothe as thats the book i use although from what i read the suggustion is that its supose to be easier to identify birds from illustrations rather than photographs but its a handy size book to take out on a walk as as my other field guide the RSPB handbook of British birds is a tad heavy to carry around in my rucksack although the drawings are excellent. Tanman
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Old 02-11-09, 04:24 PM
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My contribution to the topic

[1]...Field Guide to Birds of Britain and Europe [ Detlef Singer Consultant : David A.Christie ]

[2]...De Complete Vogelgids [ Michael Lohmann ]

[3]...Vogels observeren bij de voedingplaats [ Birds observations by the Feeding places ]
[ Detlef Singer ]


Mike
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Old 18-11-09, 05:45 AM
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I recently bought Birds by Character - Britain and Europe: Field Guide to Jizz Identification by Rob Hume after someone recommended it to me. It's a fantastic little book small enough for a coat pocket and it deals more with the jizz of the bird than markings etc. It has great little sketches showing common behaviour of the birds. I really like the fact it tries to give the phonetics for the birds call rather than it's song too. Highly recommended, 10 well spent.
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Old 18-11-09, 06:45 AM
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Old 18-11-09, 09:43 AM
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Originally Posted by Dorset Ged View Post
I recently bought Birds by Character - Britain and Europe: Field Guide to Jizz Identification by Rob Hume after someone recommended it to me. It's a fantastic little book small enough for a coat pocket and it deals more with the jizz of the bird than markings etc. It has great little sketches showing common behaviour of the birds. I really like the fact it tries to give the phonetics for the birds call rather than it's song too. Highly recommended, 10 well spent.
Thanks for the recommendation & link Ged.........I'll investigate!
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Old 15-09-10, 10:07 PM
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I too have the Mitchell Beazely book; mine is the slightly larger version with a green cover (I think the smaller version's cover was dark blue?) It's a very good little book that drops easily into a jacket pocket; my only gripe is that it can be quite fiddly to find a bird in it in a hurry as they are not arranged by family in the conventional way - they are in size order!

I recently returned to birding (it used to be called birdwatching!) and wanted an up-to-date field guide. Everybody said 'get the Collins - it's the dogs *******s!' So it is - but field guide it certainly isn't! Don't get me wrong; I think it's a superb piece of work, but it's too big to fit a jacket pocket and heavy with it. I bought a copy but it stays at home and gets consulted frequently.

What I would love to have is an up-to-date copy of the book that was the birdwatcher's bible for most of my life; Peterson, Mountfort and Hollom's 'A Field Guide to the Birds of Britain and Europe'. It was first published (by Collins) in 1954, and I was given a copy in 1956 for my ninth birthday (OK - do the math!) It went through four editions, the last being published in 1983 and I bought each one as it came out. It's quite a bit smaller than the current Collins offering, and a great deal lighter. Sorry to harp on about that, but if you have to carry a field guide in your rucksack then it's not much good in my opinion. By the time you've got the bag off your back and unzipped it to get the book out the bird you wanted help to identify has in all probability flown - and you haven't even got the book open at the correct page yet!

So, apart from its size, what's so good about PMH? It's very quick to use; all the colour plates are bound together in the centre of the book, and each has a family of birds shown so that comparisons may be made and identification marks found. Each double spread has the colour plate on the right, with a brief description of each species on the left. The description includes reference to a page number elsewhere in the book with more detailed text and a distribution map, although in the last edition the maps were in a separate section at the back. This arrangement seems not to have been retained in any of the current field guides which is a pity - it is the fastest way to find an unfamiliar bird and so gain positive identification.

Quite why further editions didn't appear is something I have yet to understand. My last copy was the 1985 reprint, and whilst the birds themselves haven't changed, many of the maps will certainly be out of date as will the status of some species; when last I had the pleasure of visiting Cley a Little Egret was a highly twitchable species and is listed as a vagrant. I spent an enjoyable day at Pagham last weekend and was almost tripping over the things!

Despite my reservations I'll continue using PMH until I find something as good or better. If you find a copy secondhand somewhere, buy it - you'll wonder why other field guides are laid out any other way!
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Old 18-09-10, 08:45 AM
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There's pros and cons to any book I expect. Those with poor eyesight with a pocket guide would have to dig out their reading glasses. Not everyone but I guess a number of people would.

It would be great to have a pocket guide just with the bird and name + latin name for people starting out and they could find out more info when they get home.

To get all the info on birds and some different views of each bird will always need more pages and smaller print for a pocket guide.
Lagre print and pictures with info is always going to be a bit bulky.


It is always going to be difficult to get the "perfect" book to suit everyone.
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Old 18-09-10, 12:22 PM
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I think this is the book Stargazer was talking about. It's there for free on googlebooks.

A Field Guide to the Birds of ... - Google Books

There are plenty to be had on e-bay.

A Field Guide to the Birds of Britain and Europe items - Get great deals on items on eBay UK!

Here ist is on Amazon, 5th Edition 2001.

http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/search?in...rds=0618166750

Last edited by PeterB; 18-09-10 at 12:27 PM.
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Old 28-10-10, 09:05 PM
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My in the pocket book is New Holland concise bird guide its very neat & has a plastic cover, I had some book vouchers to use up so I bought DK complete birds of britain & europe rob hume its a table top job though
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