Join for FREE
It only takes a minute!

Welcome to BirdForum.
BirdForum is the net's largest birding community, dedicated to wild birds and birding, and is absolutely FREE! You are most welcome to register for an account, which allows you to take part in lively discussions in the forum, post your pictures in the gallery and more.

Reply
 
Thread Tools Rating: Thread Rating: 4 votes, 5.00 average.
Old Thursday 3rd May 2012, 04:23   #1
Bird_Enthusiast
Registered User
 
Bird_Enthusiast's Avatar

 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: NYC
Posts: 1,135
Blog Entries: 2
Bird Guide for North American East Coast

Current I ordered the latest National Geographic and The Sibley Field Guide to Birds of Eastern North America. (Peterson's Eastern Field Guide is currently out of stock on Amazon)
Were these two books good choices for beginners?
Any other suggestions or tips?
Bird_Enthusiast is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Thursday 3rd May 2012, 04:57   #2
jedigrant
Registered User

 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: GA, USA
Posts: 515
IMHO, those are the two best NA field guides. The Peterson and Kaufman guides are widely regarded as the most beginner-friendly. However, I used the Sibley guide as a beginning birder and it served me very well. It's unmatched in terms of the variation depicted and has other features that I really appreciated (i.e. tells what months the birds are in their different plumages).

Other tips? Where do I start.... :)

For field guides, I have two other recommendations. I'm a proponent of having different kind of guides. Your two use paintings, so it would be a good idea to get one or more that use photos. The Crossley ID Guide (my review) is great for studying and learning birds before going into the field. Another good photographic reference is The Stokes Field Guide to the Birds of North America (review).

From there, I've got some more suggestions if you're interested. I'm trying not to throw too much out there at once.
__________________
Grant McCreary
The Birder's Library - Bird book reviews and news
jedigrant is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Thursday 3rd May 2012, 11:39   #3
apbarr
Registered User
 
apbarr's Avatar

 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Old Plean, Scotland
Posts: 2,171
Great choice, I have both and they're very good. I tend to use Sibley as my first choice. I also have the Stokes Guide but so far I haven't used it much.
apbarr is offline  
Reply With Quote
BF Supporter 2009 2010 2011
Click here to Support BirdForum
Old Friday 4th May 2012, 03:10   #4
Bird_Enthusiast
Registered User
 
Bird_Enthusiast's Avatar

 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: NYC
Posts: 1,135
Blog Entries: 2
Quote:
Originally Posted by jedigrant View Post
IMHO, those are the two best NA field guides. The Peterson and Kaufman guides are widely regarded as the most beginner-friendly. However, I used the Sibley guide as a beginning birder and it served me very well. It's unmatched in terms of the variation depicted and has other features that I really appreciated (i.e. tells what months the birds are in their different plumages).

Other tips? Where do I start.... :)

For field guides, I have two other recommendations. I'm a proponent of having different kind of guides. Your two use paintings, so it would be a good idea to get one or more that use photos. The Crossley ID Guide (my review) is great for studying and learning birds before going into the field. Another good photographic reference is The Stokes Field Guide to the Birds of North America (review).

From there, I've got some more suggestions if you're interested. I'm trying not to throw too much out there at once.
I actually saw the Crossley ID Guide in person and it seemed ok because it is too large for a field guide. I rather use the internet to study birds than a book at home.

The Stokes Guide does look interesting and I am going to take a closer look at it.

Kaufman I heard was great due to his use of pictures instead of paintings/drawings. What are your thoughts on it?
Bird_Enthusiast is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Friday 4th May 2012, 03:12   #5
Bird_Enthusiast
Registered User
 
Bird_Enthusiast's Avatar

 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: NYC
Posts: 1,135
Blog Entries: 2
Quote:
Originally Posted by apbarr View Post
Great choice, I have both and they're very good. I tend to use Sibley as my first choice. I also have the Stokes Guide but so far I haven't used it much.
Thanks for the feedback.
It seems Sibley is one of the best all around guides.
Bird_Enthusiast is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Saturday 5th May 2012, 10:15   #6
Microtus
Registered User

 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: USA
Posts: 5,171
For photographic guides, I second the Crossley guide. The Kaufman guide is good, too.
Microtus is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Saturday 5th May 2012, 14:17   #7
bcskr
Registered User

 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: N. CA, US
Posts: 107
I have all the field guides mentioned, but the one that I actually carry with me most often in my pocket in the field is Kaufman. It is the most compact and durable, easy to use, has excellent pictures, and most of the time adequate. The few times I need more information I use the Sibley app on my iPhone which allows me to compare two species side by side. In my car I also carry Sibley and National Geographic. Another excellent photographic field guide with great pictures is Birds of Eastern North America by Sterry and Small. But it is not quite as compact as Kaufman.
bcskr is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Saturday 5th May 2012, 15:06   #8
Bird_Enthusiast
Registered User
 
Bird_Enthusiast's Avatar

 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: NYC
Posts: 1,135
Blog Entries: 2
Quote:
Originally Posted by bcskr View Post
I have all the field guides mentioned, but the one that I actually carry with me most often in my pocket in the field is Kaufman. It is the most compact and durable, easy to use, has excellent pictures, and most of the time adequate. The few times I need more information I use the Sibley app on my iPhone which allows me to compare two species side by side. In my car I also carry Sibley and National Geographic. Another excellent photographic field guide with great pictures is Birds of Eastern North America by Sterry and Small. But it is not quite as compact as Kaufman.
The Sibley is quite large, but I still manage to carry it in my over-sized pockets. I definitely look into getting the Kaufman guide in the near future.
Bird_Enthusiast is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Monday 7th May 2012, 01:43   #9
jedigrant
Registered User

 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: GA, USA
Posts: 515
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bird_Enthusiast View Post
I actually saw the Crossley ID Guide in person and it seemed ok because it is too large for a field guide. I rather use the internet to study birds than a book at home.
The internet is a great tool to study birds, but it can't provide what the Crossley Guide offers. That's a glimpse of how the bird actually looks, and even behaves, in the field. Well, I suppose you can find images online similar to most of those that Crossley includes, but they won't be grouped together in a way that allows comparison to other birds.

Obviously, his approach won't work for everyone, but I think his book is a great tool that is (as of right now) unique.
__________________
Grant McCreary
The Birder's Library - Bird book reviews and news
jedigrant is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Monday 7th May 2012, 03:19   #10
Bird_Enthusiast
Registered User
 
Bird_Enthusiast's Avatar

 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: NYC
Posts: 1,135
Blog Entries: 2
Quote:
Originally Posted by jedigrant View Post
The internet is a great tool to study birds, but it can't provide what the Crossley Guide offers. That's a glimpse of how the bird actually looks, and even behaves, in the field. Well, I suppose you can find images online similar to most of those that Crossley includes, but they won't be grouped together in a way that allows comparison to other birds.

Obviously, his approach won't work for everyone, but I think his book is a great tool that is (as of right now) unique.
That's a great point.
The Crossley is definitely a unique book/guide.
Bird_Enthusiast is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Monday 7th May 2012, 06:46   #11
lulubelle
Registered User
 
lulubelle's Avatar

 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Texas
Posts: 631
I think I have just about every guide out and the one I carry in the field 98% of the time is Kaufman's. It covers just about all of my ID needs and where it doesn't, the others wouldn't be much more help. It is extremely portable.
I agree with Grant's suggestions. I have the Stokes' new guide and really like it, but it is very heavy. I take it on trips, just not out into the field.
__________________
Happy Birding!
Lulu
Life Birds: 449
Latest lifer: N. Beardless Tyrannulet
lulubelle is offline  
Reply With Quote
Advertisement
Reply


Thread Tools
Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

vB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
North american bird I'd guide squidge Books, Magazines, Publications, Video & DVD 18 Sunday 26th February 2012 02:42
Bird Feathers: A Guide to North American Species jedigrant Books, Magazines, Publications, Video & DVD 2 Saturday 26th February 2011 06:34
More north American birds from the east coast Greg McKay Bird Identification Q&A 2 Friday 31st July 2009 11:12
North American Bird Guide. firefox32 Information Wanted 10 Monday 19th January 2009 15:17
Looking for a North-American bird guide Morag2 Books, Magazines, Publications, Video & DVD 12 Saturday 30th December 2006 04:58

{googleads}

Fatbirder's Top 1000 Birding Websites

Help support BirdForum

Page generated in 0.19849491 seconds with 22 queries
All times are GMT. The time now is 12:15.