• 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.

Australia - field guide (1 Viewer)

Ilya Maclean

charlatan
Hi all

I am travelling to Australia Dec '10 - Jan '11, during which time I intend to go birding. What field guide would people recommend?

Thanks in advance for any help

Ilya
 
Last edited:

Tom Tarrant

Well-known member
Opus Editor
Hi Ilya,

There is a lot of debate regarding the best Aus field-guide but I think the latest Slater Field-guide is my favourite.


It looks fairly cheap on Amazon, but you can find it for AU$19.95 in some bookshops around Brisbane.

Make sure that you get the latest edition (the one with a little girl birder on the front) There has been extensive revisions and plates are excellent (check out the 'buttonquail in flight')

Tom
 

Mike Jarvis

Well-known member
Hello Ilya,
The Morcombe is the lightest and smallest for carrying in your pocket. I like the way it shows variations for the different races too. the Pizzey and Knight has consistently the best pictures. Simpson and Day has handy check boxes next to each species, and good info on understanding the different habitats. The latest Slater is very good too.
Really they are all good, each with their strong points. Whichever one you buy will do fine, and if you can get two, even better.
 

mr_birdman

No longer a Canon Snob.
I personally love Michael Morecombe's pocket guide as well as his larger version. The Pizzey and Knight is also on my preferred list of reference books. Enjoy Australia! :)
 

Azzy

Well-known member
The Aussie field guides really are about personal preference. I love my Simpson and Day, yet I still find times when I wish I had something to compare it to. I've never been a fan of Slater, looking to get the Pizzey and Knight in the next couple of weeks as an additional guide.
 

Cliff Greet

Well-known member
I can certainly recommend Simpson and Day's Guide which is very well set out and available just about anywhere including Amazon.com
Cliff
 

Tom Tarrant

Well-known member
Opus Editor
If you use an Iphone the Morecombe guide is coming out as an app soon (I have a friend who is contributing the sound....and it looks very good!)
Should be out within the month (so I'm told)

Tom
 

Gemfyre

Well-known member
For ease of carrying in the field - definetely Morcombe's compact guide.

For information - Pizzey and Knight or Morcombe's handbook.

I think Slater is the worst of the lot - but you'll find a lot of people swear by it.
 
I would say Pizzey and Knight, i am very satisfied with mine. Slater is also good, particularly for showing bird's eggs...i am not a fan of simpson and day, and i am also not a fan of an app field guide (usefull and easy as it would be, i don't like the idea of technology taking over the reference book)
 

YourBirdOasis

Well-known member
Simpson and Day

I LOVED the Simpson and Day field guide. I had friends who owned a few other guides but they weren't as user friendly. Plus the jacket of the guide is plastic so you don't have to worry about water damage. It isn't as small as a few of the other guides, but I'd sacrifice the size for the quality. Hope this helps!
 

jimscarff

Active member
Michael Morecombe's eGuide to the Birds of Australia is now available

Michael Morecombe's eGuide to the Birds of Australia is now available for the iPhone and iPod Touch for US$ 29.99 at the iTunes App Store. I have both the iBird and NatGeo eguides to North American birds and find them very useful. There are no reviews of Morecombe's eGuide yet at the iTunes website, Anybody had a chance to look at this yet?
 

Tom Tarrant

Well-known member
Opus Editor
There was quite a lot of correspondence on this subject on Birding-Aus Mailing-list recently, see the BA archives

Tom


Michael Morecombe's eGuide to the Birds of Australia is now available for the iPhone and iPod Touch for US$ 29.99 at the iTunes App Store. I have both the iBird and NatGeo eguides to North American birds and find them very useful. There are no reviews of Morecombe's eGuide yet at the iTunes website, Anybody had a chance to look at this yet?
 

mjh73

Well-known member
The first time I came to Oz (on honeymoon) I brought Simpson and Day as a field guide.

When we moved here I 'upgraded' to Pizzey and Knight. It is a great book, but ultimately I found it a bit of a slog to hump around in the camera bag.

I subsequently 'downsized' to the new Slater for field-trips which is a much more convenient size. The illustrations are good, but I've found the arrangement of species and duplication that comes with it a bit mind-boggling. I would have preferred it in taxonomic order.

I bought the Morcombe iphone app. It's is not a substitute for a field guide IMHO, but it is well worth the money for the catalogue of bird calls alone.

Pizzey and Knight is still used to double check things when I get home, or when I just want to read up on things a little. Simpson & Day has been inherited by my 2 year old. He loves it!
 

Andy Rufous

New member
Just a heads up that if you're interested in Simpson and Day that the Australia Post shops currently have the latest edition for $AU20. Not a bad price. It comes with a few bird posters as well.

I also just purchased the Morcombe iPhone app on mjh73's suggestion and it is indeed wonderful given the bird calls. Very handy addition as it is with me at all times unlike my guide books. But certainly no substitute for Simpson and Day or Pizzey and Knight.


edit: I've no affiliation with australia post or morcome even thought this is my suspicious first post!
 

Users who are viewing this thread

Top