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Andres M. Dewet (Cape Town, South Africa)
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Birds of New Zealand, Hawaii, Central and West Pacific (Collins Field Guide)
Birds of New Zealand, Hawaii, Central and West Pacific (Collins Field Guide)
by Ber van Perlo
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £26.94

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Leaves much to be desired, 27 April 2011
It must be said that we need to thank Ber van Perlo for boldly going with field guides where nobody has gone before. Opening up new areas and covering more territory than many other field guides. However, Ber van Perlo is not the best illustrator in the world, so do not expect the plates to be artistic masterpieces one may expect from Norman Arlott or Guy Tudor. For plate quality, rather go for H. Douglas Pratt's "The Birds of Hawaii and the Tropical Pacific." This older guide also illustrates extinct species in this hard-hit region and covers all of Polynesia and Micronesia from Hawaii to Fiji to Palau, except New Zealand (and its offshore islands) and Melanesia.

I was greatly disappointed to find the title a little misleading. The title's "West Pacific" does not include any part of Melanesia. Do not let the initial scope of works mislead you. The pre-publication brief stated all Pacific birds would be covered as far west as Papua New Guinea. If you need a guide to the birds of the Bismarck Archipelago, Vanuatu, Solomons or New Caledonia, I would advise to wait till September 2011 for the publication of Birds of Melanesia.

Unfortunately, I would advise getting the old H. Douglas Pratt guide for Pacific Island birds, another guide for New Zealand, of which there are a couple and to wait for the Birds of Melanesia. This will probably give you the best coverage for the entire Pacific, make identification easier and give you better artwork in your Avian book collection.


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