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Bird Watcher's Pocket Guide (Mitchell Beazley pocket guides) [Hardcover]

Peter Hayman
4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (21 customer reviews)

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There is a newer edition of this item:
The New Birdwatcher's Pocket Guide to Britain and Europe The New Birdwatcher's Pocket Guide to Britain and Europe 4.0 out of 5 stars (11)
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Book Description

24 July 1988 Mitchell Beazley pocket guides
This pocket-sized field guide makes it easy to identify and compare group species. Symbols enable habitat and patterns of residence to be checked at a glance for hundreds of the birds that can be seen in Europe.

Product details

  • Hardcover: 192 pages
  • Publisher: Mitchell Beazley (24 July 1988)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0855331488
  • ISBN-13: 978-0855331481
  • Product Dimensions: 18.8 x 9 x 1.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (21 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 128,953 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

About the Author

Rob Hume has been Editor of the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds' award-winning Birds magazine since 1989. He has written several ornithological books, including Discovering Birds, Observer's Birds, Focus on Birdwatching, and Birds by Character. For 10 years he was a member and Chairman of the national British Birds Rarities Committee that scrutinizes reports of rare birds in Britain, and in 1973 he discovered a new species for Britain, the American Ring-billed Gull. He lives in Bedfordshire.

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Customer Reviews

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4.8 out of 5 stars
4.8 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars An excellent pocket guide. 30 Jun 2012
This is the book which sits next to our kitchen sink so that we can look up anything seen in our own back garden. It also accompanies me whenever I am out and about in the country. If it is a small pocket guide you are seeking - then look no further.

Commencing with a few Basics, we then mover quickly on to How the Guide Works followed by a list of species included. Time spent on reading these introductory items is time well spent. All bird types are shown together commencing with the smallest (Firecrest) and working up to the larger birds with all seabirds included right at the end.

An excellent book.

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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
This is a gem of a guide which can be slipped in the pocket whenever you go for a walk and hardly noticed, yet it details all the 350 birds likely to be encountered in Britain and North West Europe, mostly in good detail. The illustrations are superb, with pictures of adult and immature plumages, birds in flight and so on, wherever they would be useful. The pointers to the identification and separation of similar species are also excellent.
The species are in some sort of appearance order rather than evolutionary order, presumably to help novices, but together with the bizarre decision to omit latin nomenclature this makes the book seem less of a serious guide than it actually is. The other significant fault with the book is the lack of distribution maps, though this is understandable given the limited space available.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Almost perfect 11 Aug 2004
I have been using this book for about 15 years and it remains my first choice for birdwatching in the field. It is a perfect pocket size, well organised and with execllent illustrations. I only have two gripes: that the sizing method (silhouettes compared to sparrows or pigeons) is not always as helpful as giving straightforward dimensions: and that there are no Latin classifications - these aren't just old fashioned, they are useful information on classification and characteristics.
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5.0 out of 5 stars The best birdbook I have ever had 25 Jun 2014
By Peter B
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Please read the title above ^^^. My dad bought me this book first time in 1987. I was 8 then , now I'm 35 - and into feathery birdwatching every bit as much as I was back then.
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5.0 out of 5 stars A real classic 15 April 2014
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The perfect guide to birds being comprehensive, not too bulky to carry in a rucksack or a large pocket and having enough information to clinch an identification. When I lost mine I just had to buy another as no other book is as good for the purpose.
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5.0 out of 5 stars .Bird Watcher`s Pocket Guide 27 Mar 2014
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This is the perfect pocket companion for someone interested in birds.
I am not aware of a similar pocket guide that comes anyway near to this concise little guide , therefor I would certainly recommend it to anyone.
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5.0 out of 5 stars First rate guide for field use 8 Feb 2014
By Jon65
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Firstly, as of today Amazon gives the price of this as £89. A decimal point has clearly gone missing.

Having bought it when it first came out, I'm on my second copy as the first wore out from massive use. Illustrations are by Peter Hayman, who is one of the finest bird illustrators around. His "Shorebirds" is the standard reference work on that group.

Serious birders may regret the omission of Latin names and the fact that conventional species order isn't followed, but while you'd want more substantial reference works at home, the fact remains that it's as good as you'll get for something pocket-sized. It's almost impeccably reliable and I have found only two errors of fact in more than 25 years use (Brambling's white rump "sets it apart from all other finches" - no, Bullfinch has a white rump, which is illustrated; it says that Jack Snipe has broader wings than Snipe - in fact JS has narrower wings Otherwise it's spot-on).

There are plenty of other guides around: in my opinion this is the best for beginners or casual birdwatchers, and among the very best for taking into the field however experienced you may be.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent 30 Jan 2014
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Slightly too much info for a lazy birdwatcher like me but very handy - essential in fact. Get some bins too!
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Nice clean copy of this excellent little book
Nice clean copy of this excellent little book. Given that it is a field guide it inevitably gets wet and dirty so it's good to be able to get an economic replacement.
Published 1 day ago by Miss Elissa Diggle
5.0 out of 5 stars Best pocket book!
had this little book years ago until it finally fell apart. Was glad to replace it as nothing else similar. Read more
Published 1 month ago by lizzy
This is just such a great birding book. Its small and slim and fits into my pocket, but its crammed full of beautifully drawn pictures, and as I am new to birding I'm pleased that... Read more
Published 10 months ago by Mrs. B. A. Richards
5.0 out of 5 stars Simple to use, accurate for identification
Pocket sized, really useable book - bought for family member as they rated our copy so highly. Most useable bird guide we own.
Published 12 months ago by Bournemouthbabe
5.0 out of 5 stars Helpful Little Book
Useful little reference book and good value for the money. Light and so easy to carry in a pocket or bag.
Published 12 months ago by Janet Pongennari
5.0 out of 5 stars Irreplaceable
We bought a copy when it first came out and have bought a second copy as the first one had so much use

This guide is almost perfect - beautifully illustrated &... Read more
Published 15 months ago by Robert Wallace
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent field guide
Excellent little book to identify birds and small enough to take out when going for a walk. It gives clear pictures of male, female and juvenile birds as well as a description of... Read more
Published 15 months ago by Happy Grandma
5.0 out of 5 stars great little bird book
great little book lots of information on the birds just right for taking with you wether you are bird watching or not.
Published 17 months ago by John Wells
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