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ZEISS. Discover the fascinating world of birds, and win a birding trip to Columbia

Flight Identification of European Passerines and Select Landbirds, an Illustrated and Photographic Guide authored by Tomasz Cofta. (1 Viewer)

jurek

Well-known member
Something I already try to do (not always easy to get a useable photo, though even a blurry flight shot will sometimes show positions of markings that turn out to be useful
You can just point and shoot in a burst, and hope that 1 in 200 photos will be identifiable. A joy of digital cameras, where the limiting factor might be your patience to review all the photos taken. :) I also find that playing with contrast and brightness on a monitor does wonders - for example reveals pattern on an otherwise dark underside of a bird. Also, one learns lots - after ID-ing species several times, I learned for example less common calls of Greenfinches in flight. In one of my local patches, I have regularly flyover flocks of Greenfinches over a lake, but hardly ever one perches close. And of course I knew Greenfinches and their normal calls since decades.

I think among recent books it is an unusual one, because it adds much new knowledge, not just repackages familiar information with attractive illustrations.
 
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Andy Adcock

Well-known member
England
You can just point and shoot in a burst, and hope that 1 in 200 photos will be identifiable. A joy of digital cameras, where the limiting factor might be your patience to review all the photos taken. :) I also find that playing with contrast and brightness on a monitor does wonders - for example reveals pattern on an otherwise dark underside of a bird. Also, one learns lots - after ID-ing species several times, I learned for example less common calls of Greenfinches in flight. In one of my local patches, I have regularly flyover flocks of Greenfinches over a lake, but hardly ever one perches close. And of course I knew Greenfinches and their normal calls since decades.

I think among recent books it is an unusual one, because it adds much new knowledge, not just repackages familiar information with attractive illustrations.
Unless you have a photographic memory, I think it's practical use will be limited, it will be used in conjunction with photos as suggested already but there are still a lot of birders who don't carry a camera.
 

Swissboy

Sempach, Switzerland
Supporter
Switzerland
............... there are still a lot of birders who don't carry a camera.

Yes, I'm one of them. I clearly prefer having my scope along. And carrying both scope and camera (plus binoculars, of course) definitely overloads my comfort level.
I may have a camera in a backpack, but then it's not really ready, anyway.
 

CerambyX

Well-known member
Latvia
Unless you have a photographic memory, I think it's practical use will be limited, it will be used in conjunction with photos as suggested already but there are still a lot of birders who don't carry a camera.

So just like every other identification/field guide? ;) Many use Collins the same way you describe - take pictures of birds in field and then compare them with pictures/text in at home/in car/etc.- nothing wrong about it. Obviously the new guide tackles much narrower subset of bird identification (Passerines in flight) but otherwise I can't see any reason why it would have a limited practical use? It aims to fill 'empty niche' of bird ID - as we have dedicated books on raptor ID in flight, sea-bird ID in flight (all great books) etc., but none on smaller birds even though we see them in flight all the time. Obviously the call usually is more important to ID flyovers (so it's nice to see them nicely represented in the book too) than visual cues, but experienced observers can pick out species on seemingly minuscule details. And I feel that this book will be a good 'push' for wider audience of birders to try to notice these details in flying small birds.

I feel very excited about this book - as jureks says, one of the rare books that at least tries/aims to add something new to our birding knowledge. So far example pages look amazing to me!
 

Ries

Well-known member
Netherlands
Princeton is the American publisher, that's probably the release date in the US?
Euh, it just IS the publisher, based in US, UK (for EU, gheghe) and China. The review in the op gives the same link, with the same date. There's no other official release page with different release date to be found, just outdated secondary ones.
 

Andy Adcock

Well-known member
England
Euh, it just IS the publisher, based in US, UK (for EU, gheghe) and China. The review in the op gives the same link, with the same date. There's no other official release page with different release date to be found, just outdated secondary ones.
For some reason, I had it in my head that this was a Helm, publication...........gheghe?
 

njlarsen

Gallery Moderator
Opus Editor
Supporter
Barbados
If I was living in Europe I would likely purchase. Given where I live I might wait until it hits reduced price (if it happens).

Niels
 

Steve Lister

Senior Birder, ex County Recorder, Garden Moths.
United Kingdom
When I placed my order yesterday the blurb said available from January 21st, but that could be wrong of course.
 

philip1947

Active member
It takes time to process and distribute them to booksellers around the country. Princeton informed me today that the book will be available in late January. Phil Slade
 

Stonefaction

Stuck in Dundee.....
Scotland
You can just point and shoot in a burst, and hope that 1 in 200 photos will be identifiable. A joy of digital cameras, where the limiting factor might be your patience to review all the photos taken.
I (mostly) can't keep them in the viewfinder long enough for even 20 photos - sometimes it can even tricky to get to 2! ;)

Seems like there are a lot of species that have an undulating flight pattern, so even if they're flying in a straight line, they can be difficult to keep in the viewfinder for more than a few seconds at full zoom (500mm) unless you happen to be directly below them. It does mean that I don't have to go through too many photos to ID them though.......so there are plusses. The ones I do manage to get photos of I can usually work out what they are from calls, or from a quick zoom in on camera screen, or a combination of both - but the rest have to wait till I get home anyway, so having the new book will just make it a bit easier to get an ID than currently.
 

jurek

Well-known member
Since I don't like to carry weight and often do phonebinning or phonescoping, I am sometimes forced to take photos seeing the bird only with the naked eye. Go into non-stop burst mode, and sometimes the bird is on the photo, sometimes it is sharp, sometimes it is identifiable. ;) This is how statistics wins over matter. ;) After some time, you learn to coordinate your hands and get some probability of getting a photo.

Also, with birds it is worth to learn to anticipate, not follow. Guess where they move one second later and aim there.
 

Stonefaction

Stuck in Dundee.....
Scotland
Also, with birds it is worth to learn to anticipate, not follow. Guess where they move one second later and aim there.

I suspect I'd get on better if I just pulled back a bit from full zoom....but in practice I very rarely do, unless there's a flock (or at least more than 1 bird).
 

Ries

Well-known member
Netherlands
Well, that's all quite earlier than expected. Hope it'll arrive comparably early from my Dutch supplier Veldshop now lockdown gives room for pre-spring study :)
 
ZEISS. Discover the fascinating world of birds, and win a birding trip to Columbia
ZEISS. Discover the fascinating world of birds, and win a birding trip to Columbia
ZEISS. Discover the fascinating world of birds, and win a birding trip to Columbia

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