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Customer Review

49 of 49 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars More than just an identification guide, 29 April 2014
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This review is from: RSPB Handbook of British Birds (Paperback)
I have used several different bird books over the years, but in my opinion this is by far the best single book for birdwatchers. I know that many birders rate other books, such as the Collins Bird Guide, more highly as identification guides. But this book is perfectly adequate for identifying birds in most circumstances, and it has the advantage of being much more than just an identification guide.

As well as excellent illustrations and details on identification, voice, habitat and habits, there are sections for each bird on its food, breeding behaviour, distribution, movements, migration, population and conservation. So if you want to know something about the lives of the birds you are identifying and enjoying, then this is the book for you.

Of course this book only covers British birds, whereas the Collins Guide covers all European birds. But the Collins Guide has the big disadvantage of having maps which are far too small, whereas the maps in this RSPB Handbook are excellent. (There is a distribution map for each species on the same page as the illustrations and text for that species.)

Finally, there is the question of whether it is worth buying this new fourth edition if you already have the third edition, which was published four years ago in 2010. The main changes are in the updating of the distribution maps and the population statistics. There are not a lot of changes other than this, but for me it was worth buying the new edition for this up-to-date information.

Phil Webster.
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Showing 1-4 of 4 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 21 Jun 2014 17:27:28 BDT
Thank you very much for your very convincing comments on this book, I will purchase one very shortly.

Posted on 18 Oct 2014 20:29:48 BDT
Beadlady says:
Am I right in assuming it covers migrant birds?

In reply to an earlier post on 18 Oct 2014 21:00:05 BDT
P. Webster says:
It includes passage migrants that are COMMONLY seen in the British Isles.

In reply to an earlier post on 18 Oct 2014 22:50:14 BDT
Beadlady says:
Thank you. I will order it now.
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