Harsh! I know exactly where you're coming from, but this is really not a fair summary. For a start I can name you a whole string of field guides from across the world which are hugely worse and definitely hugely less usable. Its chief benefits are its compactness (small, light), completeness (species and plumages thereof, including North American stuff), and usability (everything on a single spread apart from maps). The artwork is, should we say, diagrammatic, but this does not in itself prevent it from being highly usable and effective. Its only (substantial) disadvantage is that the book - primarily the artwork - occasionally gets things plain wrong.the van Perlo book is not worth buying. Just about the worst art and guide I have ever seen
Another option is to cut Howell and Webb apart and bind the plates separately. The plates are only 140+ pages.My recommended option is to carry van Perlo about yourself and convince one of your mates to lug his Howell and Webb around and stick close by you 👍🏻
I agree that this is a good alternative, but suggest copying the specific Yucatan plate (#69) with its adjacent text.This has been discussed before so the relevant section will have more information about the different options. Given that you are visiting before the main migration is going on you would do fine with Howell and Webb even if you do not know the US birds that well. This would be my number 1 choice.
One alternative not discussed above that is also really good for the area but which is missing about 10 endemic species from the north of the state of Yucatan is this one:
I used it (as the only resource I brought along) for especially the Southern area of QRoo on my last visit to the area.
Peterson Field Guide To Birds Of Northern Central America (Peterson Field Guides): Fagan, Jesse, Komar, Oliver: 9780544373266: Amazon.com: BooksBuy Peterson Field Guide To Birds Of Northern Central America (Peterson Field Guides) on Amazon.com ✓ FREE SHIPPING on qualified orderswww.amazon.com
this can never be overestimated!do some "homework" in advance, so I often had an idea already what I was looking at when I saw a new bird.
You mean seasonal migrants that breed in North America, or vagrants to the region? Speaking of the Sibley guide, I've found it doesn't seem to cover any species that do not range into the US or Canada, despite the northern half of Mexico being highlighted in the Sibley book(s) as part of the region covered.Also it should be noted that, despite its bulk, the Howell & Webb guide does not depict most birds depicted in "North American" field guides, i.e. those guides to the birds of North America north of Mexico. It has textual descriptions only. So you may also need a guide such as Sibley.
No it doesn't. It might be useful in the northern half of Mexico, but it certainly doesn't cover it, nor pretend to....despite the northern half of Mexico being highlighted in the Sibley book(s) as part of the region covered
Again, the region is highlighted on the map in the introduction, and Mexico or at least parts of it are often included in people's definition of "North America", which I'm guessing is because the cultural and geographical borders are fuzzy and the Nearctic extends south of the border. So yes, it does appear of pretend to, especially since I haven't found any explanation within the book.No it doesn't. It might be useful in the northern half of Mexico, but it certainly doesn't cover it, nor pretend to.