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FPeterson Field Guide to Birds of Eastern and Central North America, 6th Edition (Peterson Field Guides) Paperback

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FPeterson Field Guide to Birds of Eastern and Central North America, 6th Edition (Peterson Field Guides) + Peterson Field Guide to Mammals of North America: Fourth Edition (Peterson Field Guides) + A Field Guide to Reptiles and Amphibians: Eastern and Central North America (Peterson Field Guides)
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Product Details

  • Series: Peterson Field Guides
  • Paperback: 464 pages
  • Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt; 6th edition (March 14, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0547152469
  • ISBN-13: 978-0547152462
  • Product Dimensions: 8.1 x 5.4 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Shipping: Currently, item can be shipped only within the U.S.
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (103 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #6,620 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews Review

Product Description
With all-new range maps, updated text, and 40 new paintings, the completely revised editions of two classic Peterson Field Guides are sure to be valuable additions to any birder's pocket or daypack. At a trim size of 5 x 8, they are portable but also beautifully illustrated. Photographs, while modern looking and colorful, capture just one moment in time. The paintings in these guides, however, show all of a bird's key field marks and use the Peterson Identification System to make bird identification easier for beginning and intermediate bird watchers. A team of professional birders has updated the text, the maps, and the art for these authoritative guides. Expert birders also created 35 entertaining and easy-to-use video podcasts, which are available to download. They make fun and educational viewing on a computer desktop or MP3 player.

The best-selling field guide since 1934, the Peterson Field Guide to Birds of Eastern and Central North America is now in its sixth edition. With clear, succinct accounts of more than 500 species, accurate and beautiful paintings on 159 color plates, and 512 maps annotated with extensive range information, this is the most up-to-date and accessible field guide for bird watchers in eastern North America

A Look Inside Peterson Field Guide to Birds of Eastern and Central North America
(Click on each image below to read about the bird group)

Miscellaneous Chickenlike Birds Atlantic Alcids (Auks) and Murrelets Waxwings, Bulbul, and Starlings

From Booklist

Based on the Peterson Field Guide to Birds of North America (2008), this new edition of the original regional guide (2002) brings the same improvements and corrections to maps, taxonomy, and paintings. Peterson Field Guides are best for beginning to intermediate birders and are, as always, wonderful for teachers and trip leaders. The 2010 volumes (that is, this title and the fourth edition of Peterson Field Guide to Birds of Western North America) are simply subsets of the 2008 comprehensive volume, and as such contain no new information. Highly recommended for all libraries, especially those that do not own the 2008 North American guide. --Jeff Kosokoff

More About the Author

Roger Tory Peterson, one of the world's greatest naturalists, received every major award for ornithology, natural science, and conservation as well as numerous honorary degrees, medals, and citations, including the Presidential Medal of Freedom. The Peterson Identification System has been called the greatest invention since binoculars.

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Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
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See all 103 customer reviews
I have a lot of birds that come into my yard to my feeders.
These have the usual quality of Peterson guides...the photos/drawings are great and certainly helpful in identifying birds in the field or at the feeder.
Nurse Debi
I would recommend this book to anyone who enjoys watching our feathered friends.
L. Thiel

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

117 of 126 people found the following review helpful By Donald Morgan on July 26, 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I really wish I could agree with the glowing reviews given by others, but I can't, at least in some respects. I grew up with the original Peterson field guide, and it was my parents' bible. The revisions over the years greatly enhanced the original material. I doubt there is a "seasoned" birder out there who would not say that the Peterson guides are responsible to a great extent for their love of birding.
As soon as They were available I signed up for the pre-order of both the eastern and western editions. I have had them now for around 5 months, and they have never left the house. I can only really comment on the eastern edition, because I never had a previous western ed., but I assume this applies to both.
The book's content is at least 95% the same as the previous edition. I have spotted an added picture or two, but not many. Colors have been changed slightly, but I am not sure that they are better, and it may just be the printing process. The text is updated to agree with current information, bird names, etc., but I haven't noticed much else. In that the pictures and information in the guides has always been excellent, all well and good.
The complaint I have is that the book is just no longer a FIELD GUIDE to me, as past editions were. It is thicker, somewhat heavier, and for a very poor reason, in my estimation. The difference is primarily in the back section of range maps, which has almost doubled in size. It takes up roughly 1/4 of the total size of the book. Now, we all refer to a range map from time to time, but I would bet its something like 1 in 300 times we use the book. Beyond that, the regular pages have smaller maps for the birds which suffice very well at least 95% of the time. To waste all that space and weight is ridiculous.
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48 of 50 people found the following review helpful By Doug Phillips on August 9, 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Sure there is lots more competition from other bird books now; but for ID of birds Peterson is still the best! The use of "points of emphasis" drawings to distinguish what makes a species different is still the best technique and biggest help - even for experienced birders (and I fit this category knowing warblers by their song). Do not go with books that use photographs whatever you do - birds just do not look like the photo in real life; as there is significant variation by bird. But a few characteristics are prominent on all birds of the same species - thus, Peterson drawings emphasizing these prominent points are the most helpful approach. Also, do not try to make a reference book with more info into a "field guide" for ID - too much info is bulky and confusing and harder to reference "in the field". RTP is still King and his legacy lives on...
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful By H. Moro on July 17, 2010
Format: Paperback
I was initially reluctant to buy the first edition of the namesake guide that R. T. Peterson (who died in 1996) was not at all involved in producing, but I was needlessly concerned. This new guide incrementally improves on its previous (5th) edition, incorporating a cleaner layout, updated range maps, and the revised taxonomy of the latest supplements to the AOU checklist. The original plates, similarly, have been dealt a subtle hand; overall, I feel they've never looked better!

If I had any criticism to level at this new edition, it's that the the text is often spare. Terminology and useful explanations of plumage features in the 5th edition that would confuse or overwhelm only the newest birdwatcher has often been omitted entirely. Understandably, this guide has long been a favorite of beginners, but I resent "dumbing down" of one of the few references one is likely to carry into the field. (If nothing else, it means a beginner is likely to outgrow this guide sooner than he or she ought to.) Finally, was the publisher unable to find a better picture of Mr. Peterson than the one they used for the back cover? Yikes!
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By spotsandstripes on January 27, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I have or have had, most all of the North American Bird Field Guides available and still I keep coming back to the Peterson for several reasons. First is the quality of the artwork. The birds look much more natural and the colors are way more accurate than in either Sibley or National Geographic. I don't like the flat 2-D presentations in either of those guides. And, personally, I just do not like the photographic guides as lighting, etc. can play tricks and make the birds look different than they really are. If I want the challenge of identifying badly lit birds then I go to the Crossley which really isn't a field guide but a great book to learn from. The Peterson is the only book with thumbnail maps for a quick peek in the field, to rule a species in or out, as well as large detailed maps in the back for close examination if necessary. I find myself going to the rear maps very frequently as I travel looking for where birds are. The notes that accompany each species are a wealth of information, not just a rehash of the features that are visualized in the picture. Sibley and Nat Geo both have more extensive entries for Gulls and Hawks and I do refer to them if I am at the coast or wanting to know about a western species, however, the Peterson is still overall the best for eastern birding in my opinion. The front matter and various learning pages sprinkled throughout the book are great for beginning birders. This particular edition is really nice because it isn't so huge that lugging it into the field is a chore. Also, many species vary from coast to coast and with this guide you are sure that you are seeing the eastern version of the bird - think Fox Sparrow. All and all the best bird book for beginner through advanced birder.
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