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Butterflies through Binoculars: The West A Field Guide to the Butterflies of Western North America (Glassberg Field Guide Series) [Paperback]

by Jeffrey Glassberg
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (23 customer reviews)

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Book Description

July 26, 2001 0195106695 978-0195106695
This field guide offers a comprehensive display of all the magnificent butterflies of the western region, stretching from the plains of middle America to the Pacific coast, and from southwestern Canada all the way to the Hawaiian islands.

Jeffrey Glassberg's acclaimed Butterflies Through Binoculars series has essentially revolutionized the way we view butterflies. Featuring an extensive array of photographs, this new volume offers expert guidance in locating, identifying, and enjoying all the butterflies of the West. In fact, together with its companion volume Butterflies Through Binoculars: The East, every type of butterfly from the continental United States is described and, in most cases, photographed. As a complement to its outstanding instruction in spotting both rare and common butterfly species, the volume also includes range maps, advice on food plants, wing areas, flight times, and a host of other butterfly facts. Moreover, each stunning photograph contains identification marks, shown clearly for ease in positive identification.

From butterfly biology to butterfly conservation, this useful and practical field guide provides all the necessary information to make your butterfly experience a success. Whether you are a butterfly enthusiast, a birder, a conservationist, or a nature lover in general, this guide is the ideal accompaniment to your search for western butterflies.

Frequently Bought Together

Butterflies through Binoculars: The West A Field Guide to the Butterflies of Western North America (Glassberg Field Guide Series) + Butterflies through Binoculars: The East A Field Guide to the Butterflies of Eastern North America (Butterflies Through Binoculars Series) + Butterflies of North America (Kaufman Field Guides)
Price for all three: $88.35

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Editorial Reviews

Review


"Books like these could open the world of butterflies to much more of the general public...Overall, I like this guide's arrangement...Binoculars supplies descriptions and, most important, scientific names and range maps on pages that face the photographs, which saves a lot of page turning...Lastly, Butterflies Through Binoculars has a wonderful section on conservation." -- Paul R. Ehrlich, Science


"Bird watching has been popular for many years, but now it's time for butterfly watching to take the spotlight! With the help of this 'Butterflies Through Binoculars' this latest trend in nature study is made understandable through text and photographs."--Y.E.S. Quarterly


"Prayer answered! Six hundred twenty-five color photographs of butterflies in the wild! Color range maps that show where each species occurs, and when! Descriptions, punctuated with the diagnostic field marks in boldface! Timelines of peak flight abundance! And a quirky author's voice throughout that communicates Glassberg's infectious love of his subject, something that makes this more than a field guide: it's a field companion."--Bird Watcher's Digest


"The best way to find out if a nature guide is any good is to test it in the field....Our test of Butterflies through Binoculars: The West out in the laboratory of Big Bend National Park proved that it's an exceptionally useful field guide. Those who seek to know the kind of butterflies flitting over hill and dale will want to own a copy."--Gary Clark, Houston Chronicle


About the Author


Dr. Jeffrey Glassberg is President of the North American Butterfly Association and editor of American Butterflies magazine.

Product Details

  • Series: Glassberg Field Guide Series
  • Paperback: 384 pages
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA (July 26, 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0195106695
  • ISBN-13: 978-0195106695
  • Product Dimensions: 8.3 x 5.5 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.3 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (23 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #473,079 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
21 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Outstanding Photos Make Sight Identification Easier July 19, 2001
Format:Paperback
This field guide is designed to encourage sight identification of butterflies by using field marks and habitat clues, just like birdwatchers do. Jeffrey Glassberg's photographs reveal butterflies in their natural settings as they are actually seen. Glassberg is a superb photographer and he groups similar butterflies on the same page, making comparison and contrast easier. Glassberg has provided all information on facing pages: range map and text on the left, photos on the right. There is no need to flip to another page. The introductory text contains use information on conservation, habitat, binoculars, photography, and tips for improving sight identification. Glassberg's mission, as founder and President of the North American Butterfly Association (NABA), has been to promote the nonconsumptive enjoyment of butterflies by the public. This field guide, and its companion Butterflies through Binoculars: the East, do the job.
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
Format:Paperback
This field guide is designed to encourage sight identification of butterflies by using field marks and habitat clues, much as birdwatchers do. Jeffrey Glassberg's photographs reveal butterflies in their natural settings as they are actually seen. Glassberg is a superb photographer and he groups similar butterflies on the same page, making comparison and contrast easier. Glassberg has provided all information on facing pages: range map and text on the left, photos on the right. There is no need to flip to another page. The introductory text contains useful information on conservation issues, habitat, photography and tips for improving field skills and sight identification. Glassberg's mission, as founder and President of the North American Butterfly Association, has been to promote the nonconsumptive enjoyment of butterflies by the public. This field guide, and its companion Butterflies through Binouclars: the East, do the job.
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15 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The New Standard for the Field! September 22, 2004
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
A while back I wrote a review of the Peterson Series "Field Guide to Western Butterflies", which I had used in the field during the 4th of July Butterfly Count in the Organ Mountains of New Mexico. I gave it five stars as I thought it the best field guide to actually use in the field. The rival Audubon guide to butterflies left me cold because it simply does not show enough detail for identifying hard species. I thus dismissed photo guides because of this bad experience, thinking that artists did better work in illustrating these beautiful insects. I was wrong! There is a way to produce a photo guide to butterflies that actually works and Jeffrey Glassberg has done it! This is the best field guide that I have ever seen for butterflies. The photos, mostly taken by the author, are simply superb! The best thing that Glassberg has done is to standardize the photos so you can compare the same characters. This is a major innovation and must certainly have taken a lot of time. The placing of maps and descriptions opposite the photographic plates is also a major change from the other popular guides. It sure saves a lot of page flipping!

I am often laughed at because I still use a 35 mm SLR for photographing insects, but Glassberg's photos (all with a 35 mm SLR) show why it still may pay. Digitals are, I know, the coming thing and will soon overtake SLRs, but most digitals still cannot match an old Nikon FM2n with a 55 mm macro or an Olympus with a 90 mm macro, both of which I use.

Glassberg's remarks about how much space digital shots take up (5 MB roughly for a decent high resolution) are probably dated because of gigabyte technology which allows as much as 200 shots at a time, even at high resolution.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Absolutely PERFECT book to identify BUTTERFLIES July 30, 2002
Format:Paperback
WOW. Great book much better than any other I have seen. The descriptions between different frittillaries is amazing. Down to the small missing line that distinguishes great spangled from nokomis. Did I know that before I got the book? DUH.. NO!!! The best thing about this book is it shows SIDE view AND a TOP view... Many times you only see or photo either top or side. I was very frustrated with other books. I intend to recommend this book on my website theoutdoorgirls.com
Cherry Emerson, Ph.D.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best Pictures Ever March 8, 2002
Format:Paperback
As a beginner, I was able to pick up this book and start identifying butterflies in the field right away. The pictures are great and make it very easy to see the key features. The descriptions are clear and the additional information on range, habitats, and seasons very helpful.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic field guide / ID reference December 13, 2007
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
A quick summary for anyone who doesn't want to read my ramblings. This is a great identification reference. It is intended only as an identification guide. And as that, it is excellent. But with so many butterflies described, the casual butterfly observers may want a smaller book / chart with only local species for easier lookup (perhaps in addition).

First, it is important to know what this is. It is a field guide to aid in identification of butterflies and skippers, with very good photos for that end. The photos may not be artistically pleasing to everyone, but they are taken in such a way to best present the butterfly for identification. Unique identification characteristics of individual species are pointed out when they will aid in the identification. Size and geographical distribution is also given. On each photo the author also tells you how large the photo is compared to a real specimen.

This is not a butterfly reference book. You will not find detailed information about the butterflies in this book. Instead, you will be able to identify what you find, and then use the name to look up more details on that butterfly in another book / the Internet.

This is also not a coffee table book with large glossy photos of butterflies. Due to the sheer number of species described in the book, each photo is rather small, and as mentioned earlier, may not be artistically pleasing to everyone. Little attention is paid to the background, since that is not very important to identification. When the plant the butterfly frequents is important to the identification, it will be mentioned in the text.

The sheer number of butterflies in this guide can be overwhelming to the casual observer. I don't know if I'll ever see more than 1% to 2% of the butterflies listed here.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Butterflies through Binoculars
Hundreds of color photos highlight this book. This is one of a series of similarly-titled books that includes dragonflies through binoculars. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Brian H. Nordstrom
4.0 out of 5 stars Great book but how do they come up with the price on Amazon?
No question this is a great guide. When I picked up my used copy on Amazon, it said list price $55. When I got the book it had a retail price on the cover of $19.95. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Tim Mckimmie
4.0 out of 5 stars Great Photographs
Would have liked more information and more views of Butterfly subjects. Ones they showed are GOOD and I was able to view several I was very interested in seeing.
Published 9 months ago by Jeannette Carroll
4.0 out of 5 stars Western Butterflies
Another superb book from a leading lepidopterists. Jeffrey's books are always well informed with good range maps, pictures, and general information about each species. Read more
Published 11 months ago by Ken Wilson
5.0 out of 5 stars Butterflies Through Binoculars
Great source book and field guide! Color photographs and area maps indicating where species are usually found is very helpful. Read more
Published on September 27, 2011 by lynnie
5.0 out of 5 stars The complete butterfly book
I cannot imagine any improvement on the contents of this well organized hand book and the suggestions the author gives for its use. Read more
Published on April 16, 2011 by SGB
1.0 out of 5 stars Kindle edition is only black & white - shameful!
As an entomologist & educator, I use this book frequently to show people our local butterflies. Imagine my disappointment when I purchased it (and related titles) only to find that... Read more
Published on June 25, 2010 by Robert Allen
5.0 out of 5 stars The very Best of the Best
There's not much that I can add to the current Amazon reviews for this butterfly book. It is far and away the very best book on western butterflies that exists, or
probably... Read more
Published on March 22, 2010 by David Marks
2.0 out of 5 stars Kindle For PC: Contains Black and White Photos
Color photos are important for a field guide to identify butterflies. Still, a nice source of written information.
Published on November 20, 2009
5.0 out of 5 stars IDs plus habitat and food plants
This book shows male and female, top surface and bottom surface of the wings, through photographs of butterflies in their natural habitat. Read more
Published on October 9, 2009 by Chuck Pearson
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