Intent on preserving threatened bird species, George Bird Grinnell (that being his given name, and no reflection of his interests) first formed the Audubon Society in 1886. It disbanded in 1888, re-emerged in Massachusetts in 1896, and by 1905 the various fledgling state societies coalesced into the National Association of Audubon Societies for the Protection of Wild Birds and Animals. As it has more than 100 years of experience cataloguing and protecting United States wildlife, it's no shock that its field guides are so superb.
The Field Guide to the Mid-Atlantic States, covering the flora and fauna of New York, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and Maryland, as well as Delaware, West Virginia, and Virginia, contains concise and informative descriptions alongside beautiful photographs identifying over 1,000 of the region's wildflowers and trees, mushrooms and algae, fishes, amphibians, reptiles, birds, insects, and mammals. There's also a natural-history overview, explaining relevant geology and ecology, wildlife habitats and rock varieties, weather patterns and the night sky to be seen in each season. From Saltmarsh Cordgrass and Purple Sea Urchins to White-Winged Scoters and Meadow Voles, the field guide beautifully catalogues the various existent species, as well as introducing more than 50 of the region's parks, reserves, beaches, forests, and wildlife sanctuaries in which to explore, Audubon field guide at the ready. --Stephanie Gold
From the Inside Flap
Filled with concise descriptions and stunning photographs, the National Audubon Society Field Guide to the Mid-Atlantic States belongs in the home of every Mid-Atlantic resident and in the suitcase or backpack of every visitor. This compact volume contains:
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An easy-to-use field guide for identifying 1,000 of the state's wildflowers, trees, mushrooms, mosses, fishes, amphibians, reptiles, birds, butterflies, mammals, and much more;
A complete overview of the Mid-Atlantic region's natural history, covering geology, wildlife habitats, ecology, fossils, rocks and minerals, clouds and weather patterns, and the night sky;
An extensive sampling of the area's best parks, preserves, beaches, forests, islands, and wildlife sanctuaries, with detailed descriptions and visitor information for 50 sites and notes on dozens of others.
The guide is packed with visual information -- the 1,500 full-color images include more than 1,300 photographs, 18 maps, and 16 night-sky charts, as well as more than 100 drawings explaining everything from geological processes to the basic features of different plants and animals.
For everyone who lives or spends time in Delaware, Maryland, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Virginia, West Virginia, or Washington, D.C., there can be no finer guide to the area's natural surroundings than the National Audubon Society Field Guide to the Mid-Atlantic States.