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Birds of Southern California Paperback – September 15, 2012

4.7 out of 5 stars 36 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Kimball Garrett, a life-long resident of Southern California, is the Ornithology Collections Manager at the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County, past President of Western Field Ornithologists, member of the California Records Committee, and co-editor of the Southern California regional reports for North American Birds. With Jon Dunn co-authored Birds of Southern California, Stauts and Distribution, the Peterson Field Guide to Warblers and Birds of the Los Angeles Region. Jon Dunn grew up in the Los Angeles area and is a bird tour leader for WINGS, chief consultant to the National Geographic's Field Guide to the Birds of North America, host/writer for the Advanced Birding Video Series. Serves as a member of the California Records Committee, the American Birding Association Checklist Committee, and the Ornitologist's Union' Committee on Classification and Nomenclature. Brain Small is a Southern California based professionl wildlife photographer, co-author of two photographic guides (Birds of Eastern North America and Birds of Western North America), Photo Editor of Birding, and co-author of a bird identification column in BirdWatching. Thousands of his images are featured in books, magazines, calendars, websites, and smartphone apps.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 506 pages
  • Publisher: R. W. Morse Company; 1 edition (September 15, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0964081083
  • ISBN-13: 978-0964081086
  • Product Dimensions: 5.9 x 4.3 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (36 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #55,906 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
This is an excellent regional bird guidebook. Although directed toward newer birders, it yet has good value for the more experienced, and especially for those who lead local birding field trips.

It is 4.5x6 inches in size, and easy to carry in a pack or in the leg pocket of a pair of cargo pants.

The sections for each bird on behavior, voice, and similar species are concise and very specific. Of greatest interest to me are the paragraphs on seasonal occurrence, questions about which often make me pause while trying to recall.

The photo images are remarkably clear. I might only wish for more images, especially of immature forms. The occasional picture of similar species on the same page is very welcome. It is an easy volume to use with a short index on the inside back cover, and is especially helpful in showing a species to newer birders, who may have only gotten a glimpse of a rapidly disappearing warbler.

As a frequent birding field trip leader in San Diego County, this will be the guide that I will now most often carry and recommend for this area. Thanks to the authors.

Peter Thomas
San Diego
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
A solid listing with accurate descriptions and beautiful pictures of Southern California birds.

I would recommend it as long as you don't own any previous volumes of this book, for the "new" version" hasn't really changed much from the old one except for a new cover.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Finally a comprehensive affordable book of So-Cal birds with crisp detailed color photographs on almost 500 pages of clay semi glossy paper. Whats absolutely great about this book is that is provides pictures for BOTH male and female birds! Most books we have only provide artist sketches and only for the more colorful bird. Textual info provides other clues to ID the birds such as the sounds they make, times of year to expect to find them and other behaviors such as the way they may flick their tails. All great clues to confidently identify the bird. Each page allows an entry by you to keep track of your sightings. The book is about 4" x 6" which is a great size to make it pocket-able and the small size in no way detracts from the quality of the photos and comprehensiveness of the bird species.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Excellent book (the 2012 one) for beginning birders. Excellent photos of adults and very good descriptions. However, it is NOT THE SAME BOOK as the hardback "Birds of California: Status and Distribution." The words "Status and Distribution" make all the difference in the world and that is what that book addresses without the descriptions of the birds. Amazon should not be listing them as if they were the same book in a different format. Recently I was on a field trip with Jon Dunn. He emphasized the importance of knowing status and distribution in identifying birds. I went home & dug out my old Birds of CA: Status & Distribution. I went to Amazon to see about getting another. I saw the paperback (quail on front) and saw a review that said books were not the same. I read the copyright of the 2012 book and nowhere did it refer to the older status book. I was sure they weren't the same but got the newer one for an honest comparison. Both are useful in their own way. The older one is a treasure for the serious birder.
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Format: Hardcover
Though now three decades old, this book still offers a huge amount of useful information on the status and distributuion of southern California birds. The status of some species has changed since the time this book was written, and records of vagrants have increased dramatically, but the detailed information on ranges and migration timing is still very useful. Range maps for are included for some species and there is a good discussion of habitats and migration in the region. For a reference book, this one is extremely well written and in fact very readable.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I bought this for the colored illustrations because I do bird art ... the colors are nice enough and you can improvise somewhat
as far as what an actual bird would look like. Information is also handy...especially for the bird watching crowd.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I am new to the study of birds. For a while now I have been feeding a variety of birds in my back yard. In my endeavor to be able to identify the various birds I ordered the book, Birds of Southern California, in hard back.
You can imagine my disappointment when it arrived today and the only photos are the picture of a bird on the cover and the photo of the two authors on the back of the book.
Apparently the hardcover and paperback are totally different books.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I live in Ventura County and have been curious as to what birds fly in and out of my backyard. This book is exactly what I needed! I've already identified a couple species just by quickly flipping through the pages. I like the way this book groups the different types of birds together, and the pictures and descriptions are very helpful. Plus, it makes a great addition to my coffee table. If you're interested in learning more about the birds in your backyard and live in Southern California, this is the book for you.
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