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The Sibley Guide to Bird Life and Behavior


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About the Author

David Allen Sibley began seriously watching and drawing birds in 1969, at age seven. Author and illustrator of the nationally acclaimed National Audubon Society: The Sibley Guide to Birds, he lives in Concord, Massachusetts.

Chris Elphick, editor and contributing author, holds a Ph.D. in Ecology and Conservation Biology from the University of Nevada, Reno. He is currently a research scientist at the University of Connecticut, where he focuses on the conservation of waterbirds, especially shorebirds. He lives in Storrs, Connecticut.
John B. Dunning, Jr., editor and contributing author, earned a Ph.D. in Ecology from the University of Arizona. He is an Associate Professor of Wildlife Ecology at Purdue University and lives in Lafayette, Indiana.


Not to be confused with standard field guides to birds, this far-reaching companion to last year's The Sibley Guide to Birds complements the best of those avian catalogues that birders take along on their quests for more species to add to their "life lists." Here, the editors have compiled essays from leading ornithologists on bird anatomy, ethology and behavior to round out bird-watchers' knowledge. This National Audubon Society publication details the 80 families of birds found in North America, with hundreds of Sibley's acclaimed full-color paintings, maps, charts and illustrations. Topics range from the familiar migration, feeding, mating, nesting to the esoteric, including feather structure, eye configuration, DNA classification, evolution, hybridization and much more. Readers will learn about bird respiration, metabolism, excretion, vocalizations, senses and intelligence, among other subjects. Although the information is as detailed as a textbook, the writing is jargon-free, light and accessible. Well conceived in structure and conducive to easy reference, the volume ends with a detailed glossary, professional biographies of its dozens of scholarly contributors and a convenient species checklist, based upon the American Ornithologists' Union guidelines. Whether one is a serious expeditionary birder or a casual backyard observer of avian life, this book is a must-have reference. 796 full-color paintings. (Oct.) Copyright 1999 Cahners Business Information.

Birdwatchers flocked to Sibley's extraordinary field guide and surprise best seller, The Sibley Guide to Birds. Sibley and associates now present this prodigious companion volume, providing information about birds' lives and behavior the logical next step after identification. Part 1 ("The World of Birds") discusses basic avian biology, including form, distribution, population, and conservation, in about 100 pages. Part 2 ("Bird Families of North America"), to which over 40 ornithologists contributed, uses a standard format to describe taxonomy, foraging, breeding, range, nests, eggs, longevity, conservation, and more. Enough information is presented to satisfy readers' curiosity but not overwhelm them with scientific detail. The 796 Sibley color illustrations throughout the text are outstanding (seen only in black and white in the review galley). Posture, aspect, feet, feathers, flight, nests, habitat, courtship, and much more are captured in small but elegant paintings. An understandable, accessible, and informative next step to field identification, this is a required addition for every collection. (Index not seen.) [Previewed in Prepub Alert, LJ 6/1/00.] Nancy Moeckel, Miami Univ. Libs., Oxford, OH Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.

This follow-up to The Sibley Guide to Birds, an LJ Best Book of 2000, focuses on biology and behavior. With nearly 800 color illustrations by David Sibley, it should be gorgeous. Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.

"Regardless of one's reasons for watching birds, learning about their lives can greatly enhance the pleasure of watching their behavior--as well as markedly improve one's ability to identify them in the field. The new "Sibley Guide to Bird Life and Behavior" will help with both. Like Sibley's popular field guide, it will undoubtedly become a principal source to answer questions on avian taxonomy, habitat, behavior, and distribution. Sibley's numerous colored illustrations are alone, sufficient reason to purchase this guide, but in addition, it summarizes an impressive amount of useful information. The text is beautifully written and the chapters are consistently well organized. I highly recommend this book to anyone interested in understanding the life and behavior of birds."
--Dr. Wm. James Davis, editor of the Interpretive Birding Bulletin.

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