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Top 100 Birding Sites of the World Hardcover – February 22, 2009

ISBN-13: 978-0520259324 ISBN-10: 0520259327 Edition: 0th

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Frequently Bought Together

Top 100 Birding Sites of the World + Global Birding: Traveling the World in Search of Birds + National Geographic Guide to Birding Hot Spots of the United States
Price for all three: $71.42

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 320 pages
  • Publisher: University of California Press (February 22, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0520259327
  • ISBN-13: 978-0520259324
  • Product Dimensions: 10.5 x 1 x 12.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #561,543 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

“Spectacular color photographs and an authoritative text. . . . This stimulating, attractive book should stir the wanderlust of anyone interested in nature.”
(Henry T. Armistead Library Journal 2009-02-01)

“There is real reading here. . . . Loaded with information about the places it visits.”
(Roanoke Times 2009-03-01)

“”For pre-trip planning (and excitement building) and post-trip remembrance. . . Gorgeous color photographs.”
(Booklist 2009-03-01)

“Flipping through the pages, packed with superb photos of great birds, we can’t argue with his selections.”
(Birder's World 2009-12-01)

“A dream of a book, gorgeous to look at, with quick vivid descriptions of incredible places.”
(Terrain Magazine 2009-10-01)

From the Inside Flap

"My first response after reading this book was to reach for the phone and start booking tours to go see birds. This book's combination of dynamic photography and scope of coverage makes for a truly compelling exploration."—John T. Rotenberry, University of California, Riverside

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Customer Reviews

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Really inspiring book, combined with a lot of practical information.
Milo
A lot of pictures are digitally cropped and blown up to a very large format to fill the book.
FFDR
The world map at the front of the book marking the 100 sites provides a helpful overview.
Susan Richner

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

16 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Robert M. DeKeyser on January 27, 2009
Format: Hardcover
This is a glorious book! The photography alone will bring bird aficionados hours of viewing pleasure (even though the photographs are not original to the book). The 100 birding sites are divided into regions, and for each site there is a short summary presentation (habitat, key species, best times to visit), followed by three pages or so of more detailed descriptions of the site and species, along with four or five pictures, usually of the flagship species, sometimes also of the habitat. Inside the front and back covers a large world map pinpoints the location of the 100 sites, and a list on the side allows for easy cross-referencing between the map and the page numbers, while also providing a ranking (in case you are curious, the top-ranked site worldwide is the Spiny Forest in SW Madagascar, and the last one to make it into the list is Liaoning in Eastern China). Too bad there is no alphabetical list; nor is there any practical information about how to get to the sites. A useful feature, however, is the alphabetical English index in the back of the book, which also lists the Latin names (under the English lemmas). Overall this book is a very felicitous combination of a coffee table book and a reference work for serious birders into "lists". Whether for armchair travel or for actual inspiration, it cannot be beat, and certainly not at this price.
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful By P. Reese on February 20, 2010
Format: Hardcover
I have a couple of problems with this book despite its good content. First, this book is too large. For some odd reason they designed it as a coffee table book rather than as a reference book. It is too tall to fit on any book case. Very inconvenient. My second complaint about the book is that although the sites are generally described, one would have expected a bird list of the birds one could see at each site. There is no list. The sites are ranked 1 through 100. It does appear that some of the ranked sites are there because they have a few endemics. At least that is the impression one arrives at from reading the description. How many of the 9000+ birds of the world can be seen at these 100 sites? That would have been interesting to know. And which ones are they.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Brian Allen VINE VOICE on December 15, 2011
Format: Hardcover
I was delighted to receive this as a gift from my staff. The best aspects of the book are the sites. I have been fortunate to visit 20 of them and agree with the selection of these and the other 80. It is a very difficult task to select the top 100 for example, the author stated if it was based just on the number of species present it would include only tropical sites and mostly just in South America. The sites are based more on birding experience so sites that are great for migration (eg. Pt. Pelee)are included as well as other northern sites with great birding.

The sites are fairly evenly distributed across all of the continents and I was pleased to see it wasn't heavily biased toward North America or Europe. This is not a bird finding guide like Nigel Wheatley's series (eg. Where to Watch Birds in South America) which is packed with maps and logistic information. This is simply the list of the best places organized by continent. The information on what the habitat is like along with excellent photos of the birds and places makes this a great book to review and dream about future trips.

This is a coffee table size book and when not left out for other birders to see will be a challenge to store on a bookshelf as mentioned in another review. Still I would not hesitate on recommending this to anyone that enjoys traveling in search of birds.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By JP on June 1, 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Chose this book over several related ones based on Amazon reviews. Highly recommend. Only downside is spots are ranked 1 - 100, but the list only appears, out of order, on the inside leaf. Not ranked in terms of number of species to be seen, but on general appeal of the place. Thus some places will only give a small number of species, but they are quality ones.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By FFDR TOP 1000 REVIEWER on May 2, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
We need a book that gives us a general idea about the top birding spots in the world so that we can combine our international travels w/ birding. This book does just that.

Each destination gets 1-3 pages. The stats include: a map showing the site in the country, habitat, key species, time of year (to visit), followed by a more detailed introduction about the place and a few pictures of the star species. As soon as we got the book, we found that a site in Germany that was only 2 hrs drive from our parents home and we are already excited about visiting it this summer!

The sites include:
Euro: 17
Asia: 19
Africa: 17
Australasia: 9
Antarctica: 1
S. America: 13
Central America: 7
N. America: 17 (15 in the US)

So why 4 stars?
- A lot of pictures are digitally cropped and blown up to a very large format to fill the book. Unfortunately, picture quality suffers. A lot of images are very fuzzy.
- The author touches on the best birding spot on a very high-level, and skip a lot of destinations. For example, Poyang Lake in China is a major birding destination to see birds/crowns wintering there from Siberia. The founder of International Crane Foundation calls the place "the Serengeti for birds". I wish that the book is a more serious comprehensive guide book for "where to bird" that covers more spots in the top birding countries.

Nevertheless, the book is great in giving a general idea about which country to go. Once we get the general direction, we then fill the details such as logistics, how to get there, etc. with our extensive Google research.
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