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Collins Complete British Mushrooms and Toadstools: The essential photograph guide to Britain's fungi (Collins Complete Guides) [Paperback]

Paul Sterry , Barry Hughes
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (47 customer reviews)
RRP: 16.99
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Book Description

3 Sep 2009 Collins Complete Guides

Collins Complete Guide to British Muchrooms and Toadstools allows everyone to identify mushrooms found in Britain and Ireland. The book is illustrated with beautiful photographs throughout, featuring the species you are most likely to see.

By only covering Britain and Ireland, fewer species are included than in many broader European guides, making it quicker and easier for the reader to accurately identify what they have found.

Extensive details on size, shape and colour are given and over 1,500 photographs help you identify each species.

This is the essential photographic guide to the mushrooms and toadstools of Britain and Ireland.

Frequently Bought Together

Collins Complete British Mushrooms and Toadstools: The essential photograph guide to Britain's fungi (Collins Complete Guides) + British Wild Flowers: A photographic guide to every common species (Collins Complete Guide) + British Trees: A photographic guide to every common species (Collins Complete Guide)
Price For All Three: 37.03

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Product details

  • Paperback: 384 pages
  • Publisher: Collins (3 Sep 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0007232241
  • ISBN-13: 978-0007232246
  • Product Dimensions: 20.8 x 13.5 x 2.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (47 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 79,693 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Paul Sterry is a biologist, author and photographer whose interest in natural history spans more than 50 years. He has travelled widely, pursuing his interest in the natural world, gathering photographic material for his books, and taking stock images for his photo library, Nature Photographers Ltd (http://www.naturephotographers.co.uk). Recently, Paul's interests have centred on British wildlife and its conservation. He has written more than 50 books on British wildlife, including numerous field guides. Almost all the titles are largely illustrated by images from the archive of Nature Photographers Ltd. Among Paul's most proud achievements are books in the critically acclaimed 'Collins Complete' series of field guides; recent titles on Coastal Wildlife, and Mushrooms and Toadstools, have set new standards in terms of image quality and the role that photography has to play in the identification of plants and animals.

Product Description


Praise for the Collins Complete series:

'Wonderfully descriptive photographs'
BBC Wildlife

‘Whether you are a keen amateur or someone with a passing interest, this book will satisfy your needs.’
The Sea

'Packs in lots of well-chosen detail in compact form'
British Wildlife Magazine

About the Author

Paul Sterry has written and illustrated more than 50 books, including the bestselling Collins Complete Guide to British Wildlife and Collins Complete Guide to British Birds.
Trained as a zoologist, Paul has been a wildlife photographer for over 20 years and regularly undertakes research expeditions. He has worked as a Research Fellow at Sussex University studying freshwater ecology. Paul is a keen birder and conservationist.

Inside This Book (Learn More)
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
75 of 76 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Good book, but probably not sufficient 6 Oct 2009
Prior to the recent publication of this book, there were two 'complete' [no book can be, but they make a stab in that direction] guides to the fungi of Britain. These are "The Encyclopedia of Fungi of Britain and Europe" by Michael Jordan, and "Mushrooms" by Roger Phillips. Both books are excellent large-format paperbacks that are ideal for identification purposes except in one respect - they are fairly large and heavy.

The purpose of this book in the face of two such excellent guides then is to provide something more of a 'field guide' that can be carried around when fungus hunting. This book is much larger than the 'Gem' guides' but much smaller than the two books above. It generally covers the same number of species as the books above, but in a smaller size.

So what's missing? Well, the textual descriptions, while abbreviated, are more than sufficient for identification purposes, the main omission being descriptions of what pores look like under a microscope - not something most readers will investigate. Apart from this, however, a more noticeable omission is whether species are edible, inedible, poisonous or deadly. This has long been a fixture of fungus enyclopedias, but you won't find it here, except for a few key species. If you want this information, buy the Jordan or Phillips books.

So the text is fine, what about the pictures - a book like this will usually be used by flicking through and looking at the photos. The photos in the book are of good quality, but they are all taken of upright fungi, and generally do not show the features of the stipe (stem) and gills/pores. Unfortunately without these gill/stipe shots it won't be possible to positively identify many species, and you will have to check another book, or search for images on the internet.
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26 of 26 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A good all-rounder 10 Sep 2009
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This is the tenth book of fungi I have bought so far*, and this probably ranks very close to the top if not the top because it is a good all rounder.

It's very comprehensive in its coverage (unlike many of the pocket guides) whilst remaining sufficiently small to be useful as a field guide (unlike Phillips and Jordan). Perhaps the only one I might possibly rate above this as a field guide is the Evans & Kibby book because of its well presented identification hints, although the arrangement of species within that book is a little unusual.

The photography, all taken in situ, is excellent although agarics and boletes are often represented by a single sample (which is something where Phillips excels by having multiple specimens, albeit uprooted and plonked on a table to be photographed).

There is a brief end section which contains information on tree identification and examples of fungi associated with different trees, helpful identification information which fungi books tend to lack. Whilst useful as a starter, I would have liked to have seen something more comprehensive.

On a final note, anyone looking to buy a book for identifying edible fungi should look elsewhere, as the edibility or otherwise of each species is not indicated.

(*After, in roughly size order,
Gardweidner, Mushrooms and Toadstools (Collins Nature Guide)
Anon, Field Guide to Mushrooms and Other Fungi of Britain and Europe
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
The coverage of the book is much wider than that of other mushroom pocket identification guides. Yes, the 1,500 photographs is a typical number but that is where it ends.

Before continuing, I must say that this account is personal and idiosyncratic, based on many years of using an increasing personal library of mushroom books and accumulated field experience, although the latter is still very amateur. I have not gone back to my other books to check my impressions but so many features of this book are unique to it that such an omission is of, at most, little consequence.

At the beginning of the book there is a page of colour photos illustrating cap shape and cap texture and others on gills and stem shapes and ringshapes and attachement, all diagnostic characters.

There are 7 pages of Main Fungal Genera and Groups, each with colour photo(s) and a paragraph of text. (Other books may have some sort of summary but I find this more comprehensive and user-friendly).

Towards the back of the book there is a section on Clubs, Corals and allies, better than in any other book, as are the ones on Stinkhorns and Cage Fungi, Bracket Fungi, Toothed Fungi, Earthtongues, Discos, Jellydish Fungi and Earthcups.

There is a useful section on Ruts, Smuts and Mildews.

Slime Moulds (14 illustrations) are a welcome intruder here. However, I have tried locating "moulds", "slime moulds" and "Myxomycetes" but they are absent from both the Contents and the Index. The species illustrated are listed in the Index so, if you know your slime mould genera, you are in with a chance. (They are on pages 334 & 335). In my opinion, not only should the Index have suitable terms added but the Contents should give more detail.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars love it
got this as an xmas gift for my mum as we both like to photograph and look for mushrooms & toadstools. this is a great book and well worth owning it is very useful. Read more
Published 3 months ago by Mandy-ann
5.0 out of 5 stars The best field guide out there
It is quite heavy as printed on good quality paper, but the pictures are great, it's organised well - I especially like the 'habitat' sections, and it must be one of the most... Read more
Published 3 months ago by Ian Craven
5.0 out of 5 stars this is an another old purchase
this went to the same person who goes out looking for fungi and uses the books i bought him to ID the fungi,he is still alive so the books are a very good source of information... Read more
Published 3 months ago by John Bugden
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant book, great photographs and text and really useful ...
Brilliant book, great photographs and text and really useful additional information such as fungi in various habitats and a guide to trees.
Published 4 months ago by Julia Lowson Smith
4.0 out of 5 stars Good Beginners Guide
Lots of pics to help you identify what you see when out and about, the downside, certainly not pocket sized.
Published 5 months ago by Ms S Roberts
4.0 out of 5 stars Mushrooms
Good id book, bit too large for the field work. Colour photographs help you id what species you have, a write up on that species is alongside. Read more
Published 5 months ago by Amazon Customer
4.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic book
I really love this book. It has plenty of macroscopic information and photographs to help you to understand and identify your fungi. It even covers some slime moulds. Read more
Published 5 months ago by David
5.0 out of 5 stars I am a fun guy
so this book on fungi is just the ticket....whether it's a Deathcap or a Beefsteak Fungus this book explains all...
Published 8 months ago by B I Carter
5.0 out of 5 stars Fungi Feast
A trulke excellent guide to the myriad fungi forms that appear in the countryside. Here is at least a start to identifying what they are.
Published 10 months ago by Beulahman
4.0 out of 5 stars good reading
my son has found this very useful as he likes to go foraging in the local woods near him. He has been able to identify a few more mushrooms.
Published 10 months ago by Mrs S Barritt
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