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Birds of the Sierra Nevada: Their Natural History, Status, and Distribution Paperback – June 17, 2013

4.9 out of 5 stars 16 customer reviews

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Frequently Bought Together

  • Birds of the Sierra Nevada: Their Natural History, Status, and Distribution
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  • Sierra Birds: A Hiker's Guide
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  • Laws Field Guide to the Sierra Nevada, The (California Academy of Sciences)
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Editorial Reviews

Review

"A thorough, accessible text embracing a massive and diverse region of California. . . . [The book] distills wisdom from many people who love both the avifauna and the high country and will inspire many of us to follow in their tracks."--Claire Peaslee"West Marin County" (06/27/2013)

From the Inside Flap

"The Sierra Nevada has inspired a long history of outstanding science and art, and now it has a bird book that measures up on all counts. Avid birders will be more than satisfied with the 'when' and 'where' information about each species, while novices (and experts) will be drawn in by the 'how' and 'why' facts sprinkled throughout, as well as by Keith Hansen's lively and beautiful artwork. It is rare that a reference book invites you to simply sit down and read, and this is such a book."--David Allen Sibley, author and illustrator of The Sibley Guide to Birds

"If you are lucky enough to visit the mighty Sierra (or if you just dream of going there someday), this book will multiply your understanding and enjoyment of its birdlife. With deep insights into the natural history, seasonal occurrence, and changing status of all the birds in the range, enhanced by beautiful illustrations, this is a monumental work that will be consulted and admired for decades to come."--Kenn Kaufman, author of the Kaufman Field Guide to Advanced Birding

"The delights and nuances of birding in the Sierra Nevada fly off the pages of this deeply researched and richly illustrated book. The illustrations capture the gestalt and details of each species, and the detailed descriptions are fun to read and packed with information that will help the reader see and understand more about birds. No other book combines these elements so successfully. The product of over fifteen years of research and painting, this is a magnificent resource for all who love the mountains and the biodiversity within them."--John Muir Laws, author and illustrator of The Laws Field Guide to the Sierra Nevada

"Birds of The Sierra Nevada presents valuable scientific information in an easy, eloquent style, fitting to the majestic and inspirational region covered by this guide. Keith Hansen's illustrations reflect absolute attention to accuracy and to each species' essence, what the observer sees in the field. I strongly recommend this book, not just for those visiting the Sierra Nevada, but for birders and ornithologists throughout North America."--Peter Pyle, author of the Identification Guide to North American Birds

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 446 pages
  • Publisher: University of California Press; F First Edition edition (June 17, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0520274946
  • ISBN-13: 978-0520274945
  • Product Dimensions: 7 x 1 x 10 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #309,213 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Very thorough coverage of the birds & where and when to look for them. Love that it covers the entire Sierra Nevada - most of the previous books tended to concentrate on the Yosemite area. Also has a good explanation of the various habitats, how to recognize them, and which birds can be found in which areas. Highly, highly recommend this book for anyone birding the Sierra Nevadas.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
As a wildlife intake center volunteer, this book offers a lot of info into locations of types of birds, their habitats their elevations, history, how they interact and even communicate and much more. Lists recent trends, ranges, seasonal range, conservation efforts too. Only Sierra Nevada birds which narrows down the hunt for finding a particular bird. Invaluable to the bird lover of the Sierra Nevada Mountains.
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Format: Paperback
Not only life histories, but name origins, topics ranging from the big picture about the species' distribution and conservation status in the Sierra right down to specifics, for example the few sites where Green Heron has been found to breed on the east side of the Sierra. And the art work is a work of art! Real birds doing real things. I use the information in the book to prepare for slide shows, lead field trips, answer those questions I have always wondered about or been asked by friends. A huge amount of research obviously went into this book and it shows - hours and hours of searching Christmas Bird Count, Breeding Bird Survey, eBird, and list-serve data bases. It makes me tired just thinking about it - and now I don't have to do it myself! HIGHLY RECOMMENDED. This book has it all.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book goes well beyond the average book about the bird and family information. The sheer amount of time that must have been put into the research and specific details about the regional differences / stories about each species is incredible. I keep returning to it (after identifying the bird!) in order to learn more about the bird.

I actually started to not look at the book entries until I had actually seen the bird in question because it was like a reward... the entries were so interesting you might just want to read it. It is definitely a supplement to any bird book you have already. It also pairs well with the smaller "Sierra Birds: A Hiker's Guide" and the "Sierra Nevada Natural History" (which is more general).
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Excellent book. Well researched and informative about family and species accounts written by two knowledgeable people. A "must have" in addition to a field guide if you are interested in Sierra birds.
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Format: Paperback
This book is excellent for both novice and experienced birders--there's something for everyone! The diversity of bird habitats in the Sierra Nevada is made clear right at the beginning of the book with descriptions of ecological zones. I learned so much about the Foothill Zone where I live, as well as the other zones and special habitats. The authors have done an excellent job of making each species account interesting and enjoyable to read--I couldn't put it down. Complementing the writing are the beautiful illustrations--the birds come alive on every page. I highly recommend this book to all Sierra Nevada birders.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This is a beautifully illustrated presentation of the birds of the Sierra Nevada. Information about habitats, behaviors and cohabitants complements the details for individual species. This is a longed-for, well researched and substantive resource for birders, hikers and residents in the Sierras.
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Format: Hardcover
Once a birder can identify most birds seen and knows in general the broad, general area and habitat in which they might be found, the next level involves knowing more about each species' natural history.

Myriad other apps and guides provide broad-range maps and physical ID clues for every species, but little or no information on the precise habitat of a particular bird or which companion species might also be found in that habitat.

This book does that in a clear and in-depth fashion. Finding a target species in the Sierra - and elsewhere - will be infinitely easier with this book in hand. And even if you are not interested in finding birds, the book is worth buying just for the incredible art work provided for each species by the wonderful artist, Keith Hansen.
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