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A Field Guide to Venomous Animals and Poisonous Plants: North America North of Mexico (Peterson Field Guides) Paperback – September 15, 1998

ISBN-13: 978-0395936085 ISBN-10: 039593608X Edition: Exp Sub

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A Field Guide to Venomous Animals and Poisonous Plants: North America North of Mexico (Peterson Field Guides) + A Field Guide to Edible Wild Plants: Eastern and central North America (Peterson Field Guides) + The Forager's Harvest: A Guide to Identifying, Harvesting, and Preparing Edible Wild Plants
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Product Details

  • Series: Peterson Field Guides
  • Paperback: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt; Exp Sub edition (September 15, 1998)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 039593608X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0395936085
  • Product Dimensions: 7.2 x 4.5 x 0.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (30 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #94,625 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

With more than 40 years of experience in the herbal field, Steven Foster is author, co-author, and photographer of seventeen books. He lives in Eureka Springs Arkansas, in the heart of the medicinal plant-rich Ozarks.


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. These editions include updated material by Michael O'Brien, Paul Lehman, Bill Thompson III, Michael DiGiorgio, Larry Rosche, and Jeffrey A. Gordon.

More About the Author

Steven Foster is the author or co-author of eighteen books, the latest is a new THIRD EDITION of the Peterson Field Guide to Medicinal Plants and Herbs of Eastern and Central North America (with James A. Duke, photography by Steven Foster). Why a new edition? The new edition has over 700 photographs, 88% of which are new images. The book includes 60 additional species and is updated throughout with updated scientific and family names, distribution information, and flowering times. From 2000 (2nd ed) to 2013, the medicinal plant research literature has increased by five-fold compared with ALL data published prior to 2000! Jim Duke and myself scoured the literature with an eye toward scientific and ethnobotanical/historical data that reconciles tradition with science. In addition we updated safety, toxicity, and drug interaction information. In short this is a new book, that stands alone beside the two previous editions.

In 2010 I collaborated on National Geographic Guide to Medicine Herbs (with Rebecca L. Johnson, Tieraona Low Dog, M.D. & David Kiefer, M.D.; Photographs by Steven Foster, with a Foreword by Andrew Weil, M.D). I am also the co-author of National Geographic's A Desk Reference to Nature's Medicine (2006, with Rebecca Johnson), named a 2007 New York Public Library "Best of Reference." I am the senior author of three other Peterson Field Guides, including A Field Guide to Medicinal Plants and Herbs (with Dr. James A. Duke), 2nd edition, 2000; A Field Guide to Western Medicinal Plants and Herbs with Christopher Hobbs, (2002); and A Field Guide to Venomous Animals and Poisonous Plants of North America (with Roger Caras, 1995).

My goal is simply to explore the relationship between people and plants in words and images. My travels have taken me to every continent except Antarctica, mostly in search of medicinal plants to photograph from the Amazon rainforest to the highlands of Vietnam. In 1974, I began my career at the Herb Department of the Sabbathday Lake, Maine, Shaker Community, America's oldest herb business dating to 1799. It has been an extraordinary journey, and it is my pleasure to share my experience through my books.

Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
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Very informative and easy to follow.
Timmah Timmah Timmah
The Peterson Field Guides, probably one of the greatest resources every available to the aspiring student of nature.
Jason
Ordered this book to replace one lost in a move and this one was in better shape than the one we lost.
J. Webster

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

19 of 19 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on August 17, 2000
Format: Paperback
Before you dash out into the woods and pick some plants you think are edible, you might want to get this book and know definitely what will kill you, or really mess up your body. Excellent info, bright color pictures, and written for an easy understanding, this book should be in any nature enthusiast's library, right next to Newcomb's Wildflower Guide, possibly the best plant identification guide around.
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26 of 32 people found the following review helpful By Michael A. Peters on May 15, 2007
Format: Paperback
My little brother just gave me this field guide. I was shocked to see a picture of a completely harmless Scarlet Kingsnake on the cover of a field guide to Venemous Animals.

I like the field guide, but please people, if you see the snake on the cover - understand it is a Kingsnake and completely harmless, not a Coral snake which is probably what they intended to have on the cover.

Coral snakes do not have red bands between two black bands, and the type of bands they have are quite different.

If you see a Coral snake, please don't kill it either - leave it alone, but especially do not kill a harmless Scarlet Kingsnake thinking it was a Coral snake. Hopefully the next edition will fix this embarrasing mistake.
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17 of 21 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on March 20, 1999
Format: Paperback
did you know that boxwood, the ever present suburban hedge, is mildly poisonous? i didn't! a very useful book to reference for what not to touch, eat, or annoy.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Jason on July 4, 2011
Format: Paperback
The Peterson Field Guides, probably one of the greatest resources every available to the aspiring student of nature. Every guide is chock full of information on a broad range of subjects, but this one has to be one of the most useful.

This needs to be the first field guide you every buy. The Peterson Field Guide to Venomous Animals & Poisonous Plants should be in every naturalist's library, both experienced or brand new. Every child should have a copy on their nightstand, and every Grandma and Aunt Sally should have one on their coffee table.

Why? Simple put, if you know everything that can hurt or kill you, you don't get scared of every creepy crawly and little snake. In a world where every mother tells their child not to play out side because there is poison ivy EVERYWHERE, it would be good for people to know what can harm them. If you are aware of the hazards are on your area, then a whole world opens up in your backyard. That mystery plant that is growing on the corner of the yard that your have always been scared to touch isn't in the Peterson Guide. That doesn't mean it's a good idea to eats it, but if you know it's not going to kill you, you have the opportunity to find out what it really is.

Man is inherently fearful of what he doesn't understand, and sadly because so little people understand the intricacies of nature, they are scared of it. The natural world becomes the harsh "wilderness", full of hungry, rabid animals and plants that will kill you just by touching them. If you are scared of Nature, then how will you every understand the beauty within in it.

The Peterson Field Guide to Venomous Animals & Poisonous Plants covers everything from snakes and spiders to poison ivy and mushrooms.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Nicole M. Vasickanin on January 12, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
More color pictures would be appreciated (only costs a few cents for the ink), but other than that, very satisfied.
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By J. Walker on June 27, 2014
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Good - but overstates the risks of certain plants - making them sound like you should never eat them (black cherry)
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
A Very Comprehensive Guide To the dangers all around you and how to avoid common mistakes made by mostly the careless and foolish
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By Robin Fredrickson on April 17, 2014
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
make sure to take this book with you when trying any new plant for food or to look up an animal to see if it's poisonous
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