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National Geographic Birds of North America 8th edition (1 Viewer)

Mysticete

Well-known member
United States
Ian Paulson, who is usually a good person to follow if you are interested in bird literature, posted this on facebook this morning:

"THIS JUST IN! According to the authors of the National Geographic Field Guide to the Birds of North America (7th edition, 2017), Jon L. Dunn and Jonathan Alderfer, this edition of the Nat Geo guide will be their LAST! The forthcoming 8th edition (tentatively due out September 2025, and revised editions of the Western/Eastern guides (supposedly to precede the 8th edition) will apparently have Ted Floyd as the author and that there will be "a new source of maps", which I take to mean that Paul Lehman is also out! So it looks like the forthcoming National Geographic Complete Birds of North America, 3rd Edition, due out on 2 November 2021, will be that LAST National Geographic bird guide done by this team!"

Be interesting to see what changes in the next edition. I will note that Ted Floyd is a prominent figure at Birding magazine and the ABA, and also was a proponent of adding Hawaii to the ABA checklist area, so this might suggest that their are fair odds for Hawaiian birds to be in the next edition.
 

lgonz1008

Well-known member
United States
As an avid user of the NatGeo guide, this both excites me and has me worried, since there's not guarantee how it will go from here, if they will update the artwork as well and how will the maps (if not the whole layout of the book) be changed.
 

Mysticete

Well-known member
United States
Does that also mean different drawings or only text?

Niels
I imagine mostly the same artwork, although their might be some new artwork for new vagrants (and Hawaii?) as well as a few revamped illustrations. IIRC, each of the recent editions has usually replaced a small percentage of the artwork, so I expect the same to follow. No idea what that means for text though. Perhaps it's being reformatted in some way?

If it was a complete art redo, we would be looking more at 2030, not 2025.
 

Mysticete

Well-known member
United States
As an avid user of the NatGeo guide, this both excites me and has me worried, since there's not guarantee how it will go from here, if they will update the artwork as well and how will the maps (if not the whole layout of the book) be changed.
I think it's going to be the same old guide, just updated and with tweaks to the layout. I feel, especially with the new guide Howell has contributed to on the horizon, any sort of major reformatting would be risky.
 

raymie

Well-known member
United States
I wonder if they will be basing their new maps on the maps from the eBird Status and Trends? Surely there's no more accurate bird range maps out there.
 

lgonz1008

Well-known member
United States
I wonder if they will be basing their new maps on the maps from the eBird Status and Trends? Surely there's no more accurate bird range maps out there.
While that's accurate for some species, especially for exotics and species that are being reintroduced to some places, I feel like others would still need something closer to traditional range maps simply because I doubt that eBird can do accurate reports for many of those hard to find/locate species like Black Swift, you can find the reports, but they aren't constant enough unless it's an easy to ID species like a raptor, wader or migratory songbirds.
 

lgonz1008

Well-known member
United States
I think it's going to be the same old guide, just updated and with tweaks to the layout. I feel, especially with the new guide Howell has contributed to on the horizon, any sort of major reformatting would be risky.
Do you mean Steve Howell and the painfully delayed Birds of Mexico 2nd Edition or some other field guide?
 

raymie

Well-known member
United States
While that's accurate for some species, especially for exotics and species that are being reintroduced to some places, I feel like others would still need something closer to traditional range maps simply because I doubt that eBird can do accurate reports for many of those hard to find/locate species like Black Swift, you can find the reports, but they aren't constant enough unless it's an easy to ID species like a raptor, wader or migratory songbirds.
Some maps would have to be manually edited (hence why I said "based on") but I think most species could just have their range maps lifted straight from eBird.
 

Mysticete

Well-known member
United States
Do you mean Steve Howell and the painfully delayed Birds of Mexico 2nd Edition or some other field guide?
Actually I think Howell IIRC isn't the main person behind the book...I think collaborators O'Brian and Sullivan are. But this is different from the Mexico book. And probably further off?
 

Mysticete

Well-known member
United States
I don't think you can just convert ebird maps easily...after all a good guide will also specifically highlight summer, winter, and migratory range, as well as stuff like postbreeding dispersal/regular vagrancy. I also tend to think that ebird probably is somewhat biased towards areas that get heavy birder coverage. I would think this would mean that areas of the west or south may not have as good a coverage.
 

njlarsen

Gallery Moderator
Opus Editor
Supporter
Barbados
I don't think you can just convert ebird maps easily...after all a good guide will also specifically highlight summer, winter, and migratory range, as well as stuff like postbreeding dispersal/regular vagrancy. I also tend to think that ebird probably is somewhat biased towards areas that get heavy birder coverage. I would think this would mean that areas of the west or south may not have as good a coverage.
Using ebird maps with limitations for month (e.g., Nov - Mar) makes it possible to separate parts of the year out. However, I do agree that human curation is important.

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

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