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The Crossley ID Guide: Raptors

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Overview

Part of the revolutionary Crossley ID Guide series, this is the first raptor guide with lifelike scenes composed from multiple photographs—scenes that allow you to identify raptors just as the experts do. Experienced birders use the most easily observed and consistent characteristics—size, shape, behavior, probability, and general color patterns. The book's 101 scenes—including thirty-five double-page layouts—provide a complete picture of how these features are all related. Even the effects of lighting and other ...

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Overview

Part of the revolutionary Crossley ID Guide series, this is the first raptor guide with lifelike scenes composed from multiple photographs—scenes that allow you to identify raptors just as the experts do. Experienced birders use the most easily observed and consistent characteristics—size, shape, behavior, probability, and general color patterns. The book's 101 scenes—including thirty-five double-page layouts—provide a complete picture of how these features are all related. Even the effects of lighting and other real-world conditions are illustrated and explained. Detailed and succinct accounts from two of North America's foremost raptor experts, Jerry Liguori and Brian Sullivan, stress the key identification features. This complete picture allows everyone from beginner to expert to understand and enjoy what he or she sees in the field. The mystique of bird identification is eliminated, allowing even novice birders to identify raptors quickly and simply.

Comprehensive and authoritative, the book covers all thirty-four of North America's diurnal raptor species (all species except owls). Each species is featured in stunning color plates that show males and females, in a full spectrum of ages and color variants, depicted near and far, in flight and at rest, and from multiple angles, all caught in their typical habitats. There are also comparative, multispecies scenes and mystery photographs that allow readers to test their identification skills, along with answers and full explanations in the back of the book. In addition, the book features an introduction, and thirty-four color maps accompany the plates.

Whether you are a novice or an expert, this one-of-a-kind guide will show you an entirely new way to look at these spectacular birds.

  • The most complete guide to North American raptors, written by some of the foremost experts
  • The first raptor guide using Richard Crossley's acclaimed, innovative composite images that show birds as they actually appear in the field
  • 101 stunning color plates—including thirty-five double-page layouts—composed from thousands of photographs
  • Comparative, multispecies plates and photos of mystery species that allow readers to test their growing identification skills
  • Complete with introduction, 34 color maps, and detailed species accounts


Honorable Mention for the 2013 National Outdoor Book Award for Nature Guidebook

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Editorial Reviews

The New York Times Book Review - Dominique Browning
Crossley's charm lies in setting these birds against photographic dioramas…
New York Times Book Review - Dominique Browning
Marvelous, if slightly surreal. . . . Crossley's charm lies in setting these birds against photographic dioramas—when was the last time you saw an urban skyline in a bird guide?
Wildlife Extra
Crossley ID guides are a breath of fresh air in the bird guide department.
Biggest Twitch
Any field guide that starts by recommending that you sit down to read it with a glass of wine is clearly taking an original approach. And that is certainly the case with this latest addition to the series of Crossley ID Guides. We're not suggesting that anyone should throw away their classic field guide, but the Crossley ID Guide complements it perfectly and makes a brilliant addition to any bookshelf. It challenges convention, it makes you want to learn more and it inspires you to get out and look at more birds. And in our book, that's a great achievement!
Bird Watching - Matt Merritt
A highly enjoyable way of getting to know some of the world's most memorable birds.
Vanity Fair - James Wolcott
[Richard Crossley's] previous bird guide, for ID'ing Eastern birds, is the most imaginative, original attempt to re-envision the birding guide and set his approach apart from that of Sibley, Kaufman, Peterson, Nat'l Geo, and the other bibles in the field.
From the Publisher
"More useful, more natural, and more fun. It includes the condor and lets 34 raptor species spread their wings across 163 pages. Text descriptions fill another 96 pages, and 32 collages permit comparisons of different species."Birdwatching Magazine

"In a word, stunning. . . . Birdcouple was hooked most of all by the quizzes at the back of the book. Raptors from above, below, perched, at sunrise. Amazing and informative. The only sad thing is how many birds we mis-ID'd."—Warren and Lisa Strobel, Birdcouple blog

"[Q]uite simply brilliant . . ."—Bo Beolens, Fatbirder

"[The Crossley ID Guide: Raptors] carves out a unique niche amongst hawk identification books, that of an identification tool that teaches as you read, that creates opportunities for interactive learning as a part of the identification and reference process. . . . Fills a niche surprisingly untouched by previous guides."—Donna Schulman, 10,000 Birds

"Crossley ID guides are a breath of fresh air in the bird guide department."Wildlife Extra

"Any field guide that starts by recommending that you sit down to read it with a glass of wine is clearly taking an original approach. And that is certainly the case with this latest addition to the series of Crossley ID Guides. We're not suggesting that anyone should throw away their classic field guide, but the Crossley ID Guide complements it perfectly and makes a brilliant addition to any bookshelf. It challenges convention, it makes you want to learn more and it inspires you to get out and look at more birds. And in our book, that's a great achievement!"Biggest Twitch

"A highly enjoyable way of getting to know some of the world's most memorable birds."—Matt Merritt, Bird Watching

"If you love diurnal raptors (vultures, eagles, hawks, kites, falcons), this is a must-have book."—Scott Shalaway, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

"[Richard Crossley's] previous bird guide, for ID'ing Eastern birds, is the most imaginative, original attempt to re-envision the birding guide and set his approach apart from that of Sibley, Kaufman, Peterson, Nat'l Geo, and the other bibles in the field."—James Wolcott, Vanity Fair

"I must say that I thoroughly enjoyed the book and see it as a wonderful addition to the growing library of knowledge on North American birds of prey."—Geoff Carpentier, OFO News

"This complete picture allows everyone from beginner to expert to understand and enjoy what he or she sees in the field. The mystique of bird identification is eliminated, allowing even novice birders to identify raptors quickly and simply. Comprehensive and authoritative."Northeastern and Southeastern Naturalist

"Stuffed with wonderful photography this is a great ID guide if you are going to be looking at American Raptors, and one I would thoroughly recommend. I am very impressed by this book, and really looking forward to the Crossley ID Guide to Britain and Ireland now."—Ashley Beolens, Fat Photographer

"This revolutionary guide to hawks, eagles, falcons, and their allies features 101 arresting, full-page color plates that are each composites of multiple individual photos against natural backgrounds of raptors in varying distances and attitudes. An expert, substantial text."Library Journal

"[The Crossley ID Guide series focuses] on maximising your chances of correctly identifying species by ramping up the number and variety of species images within the guide and placing these images within typical habitats. . . . Each beautiful plate is painstakingly filled with images of hundreds of individual species in different settings or from different angles to help recreate how you might encounter it."—Kate Jones, New Scientist

"Richard is a first class birder and bird photographer and it came as no surprise to learn that he was engaged in producing a completely revolutionary style of field guide aimed at identifying birds in the field based on a photographic format that places birds in real life situations. Richard has aimed his books at beginner and intermediate birders who are actively seeking identification help the most. . . . As a birder new to North American raptors I would have so loved to have had access to this guide on my first visit."—Mark Thomas, Birding Frontiers

"Raptors are perhaps the most charismatic of bird groups. They are well served by this excellent guide."Choice

"This raptor guide is a can't-miss present for that naturalist on your list. . . . Simply gorgeous."—Bruce Fellman, A Naturalist's Journal

"This is an outstanding identification guide to the birds of prey of North America, and deserves a place in every serious birder's library. Indeed it would be my first recommendation to anyone considering the purchase of a guide to North American raptors. It distills a vast amount of information and experience into a novel format that will be useful to birders at all levels of experience. The Crossley Guide: Raptors achieves its goal of making learning easy and fun, and is about as close as reading a book can come to actually being out in the field with an expert. It will be hard to go back to the older guides now!"—Peter Candido, Discovery

Audubon blog - Wayne Mones
If you love raptors and want to improve your identification skills buy this book. Leave it on your coffee table or bed stand and study it. Follow this prescription and show up at your next hawk watch ready to hold your own against the pros. My library includes a several outstanding raptor guides, which I will continue to use. However, The Crossley ID Guide to Raptors breaks new ground in the evolution of bird identification guides.
Wall Street Journal - Laura Jacobs

Praise for The Crossley ID Guide: Eastern Birds:"The biggest new entry into the field is The Crossley ID Guide, which has turned the traditional field guide on its ear. Anyone who has birded regularly in Cape May, N.J., has seen Richard Crossley and his giant zoom lens stalking at dawn, dusk and in between. He has, a la Kenn Kaufman, digitally lifted the birds out of those photos and then dropped them--perched, walking, flying, diving, swimming--into a habitat that is one big photographic background, thus creating a picture window onto each species. Simultaneously we see the species up close, far away, in flight, at a feeder, in flocks, sitting, singing. Scale is up for grabs, with some of the birds so small and hidden that you don't see them until a second or third look. But the effect is engaging, exciting and akin to the real experience of birding, where so much happens on the wing, at difficult distance and in odd light.
American Scientist - Michael Szpir

Praise for The Crossley ID Guide: Eastern Birds:"[Richard Crossley] tries to squeeze in as much reality as he can onto every printed page?. Why put such images in an identification guide? Crossley calls it reality birding. He believes that you can become a better birder by studying the distant birds and comparing them to the larger close-up images. By noticing the similarities between the different images, you will learn to focus on the features that remain constant for a particular species. The rationale is compelling, and I think Crossley's approach might actually work. . .. And, in case you were wondering, I love [this book].
Another Bird Blog - Phil Slade

Praise for The Crossley ID Guide: Eastern Birds:"[The Crossley ID Guide] is innovative, exciting even, in the way the reader can interact with what is in effect a real-life method to bird identification, reality birding, unlike the traditional pointed arrow, look-and-learn approach. . . . I have to say that each bird scene page contains a wealth of detailed visual information that made me look at not only the overall montage of birds, but also each of the subtly different individuals, and to even then search again through the page for more birds to look at. Just like a birding trip in fact.
Birder's Library - Grant McCreary
Richard Crossley takes the unique format introduced in his Eastern Birds guide and expands upon it. Every bird (except Aplomado Falcon) gets at least two pages devoted exclusively to it (Red-tailed gets ten!), plus inclusion in one or more of the mystery photos. These plates, where numbered images of different species are grouped together, are my favorite feature. With the answers in the back, they afford great practice at identification and provide the easiest way to compare species against each other. The Crossley raptor guide's insane number of photos and innovative design make it fun to study raptors.
Hawks Aloft

Praise for The Crossley ID Guide: Eastern Birds:"Richard Crossley has conceived and actually implemented a breakout idea for a general field guide to bird identification. . . . [W]hat (my old friend) Richard Crossley is doing with his idea of image, gestalt, wordlessness and recognition is mind-blowing. And it will revolutionize bird ID practice, discussions, and the scope of what each species is. Whether you have seen a bird and want to figure it out or you have been perusing his intuitive selection of what/how a bird looks and then you see it and know it too, I think you'll find Richard's guiding eye a game-changer for your birding endeavors.
Minneapolis Star Tribune - Jim Williams

Praise for The Crossley ID Guide: Eastern Birds:"Crossley's text is well written. It's informative. It avoids the stiff, style-bereft prose almost all other field guides contain. . . . Crossley's text is worth reading. He'll make you a better birder if you do. . . . We've been buried in ID books in recent years, flocks of them descending on book stores, all of them easily recognizable variations on the same theme. Crossley has given us a different kind of ID book, a book much more useful and helpful. He's found a new way to do it. Hurrah for him, and hurrah for us!
Pittsburgh Birdwatching Examiner - Fannie Peczenik

Praise for The Crossley ID Guide: Eastern Birds:"We've all been eagerly waiting for The Crossley ID Guide, slated to be an innovative field guide. In fact, it's more than that--it's a whole new species of book for birders. . . . The birds are seen at various stages of life, in various states of molting, in close-up and at a distance (which is how most of us see birds most of the time), and displaying characteristic behavior. The last is perhaps the most striking feature of the Guide. Of course, most field guides will show a nuthatch walking head first down a tree trunk. But what of other species, say Fulica americana? The Crossley ID Guide is the first guide I've seen that shows two American coots engaged in fisticuffs, that is, kicking wildly at each other. Only someone who has a keen eye for coots knows they're quick to deploy their large green feet to settle disputes.
Urban Birder

Praise for The Crossley ID Guide: Eastern Birds:"Believe the hype! The plates are incredible. . . . [People] will absolutely love it, especially people new to birding the main part of the book's target audience. . . . For me some of the plates were good enough to stick on the wall in a frame as a work of art. . . . I salute Richard Crossley's bravery. I think it's a brilliant, innovative idea and everyone should get a copy.
Steve Blain Presents "Bird Porn" - Steve Blain

Praise for The Crossley ID Guide: Eastern Birds:"An impressive piece of work and one I fell in love with after a few minutes. It has set the standard for modern photographic bird guides. Buy it.
Birdchaser - Rob Fergus

Praise for The Crossley ID Guide: Eastern Birds:"With The Crossley ID Guide we can linger on each picture, read the brief captions which make up most of the text, and really get to know the birds. . . . The sheer number of images makes this guide much more useful than a standard photo field guide. . . . The Crossley guide is to old photo field guides what a top of the line roof prism binocular is to an old out of alignment pair of Tasco brand binoculars. You can use one of these all day, but the other one will eventually give you headaches. . . . I think all birders would benefit from making a regular study of [The] Crossley ID. Get a copy and start having fun with it.
Ivory Bills Live

Praise for The Crossley ID Guide: Eastern Birds:"Every birder (of eastern N. America anyway) will likely want a copy of this luscious volume for their shelves. . . . Every birder knows there is no such thing as a perfect bird guide--each has different strengths and weaknesses (and much depends on personal preference). Over recent times we've witnessed a long string of new guides, each tweaking one thing or another, yet really not all that different from those preceding. . . . HELLO Richard Crossley!! Here, we really do have an innovative, almost startlingly different approach. The volume is a joy just to leaf through! . . . Showing birds as one might actually see them in the wild, is at one-and-the-same-time an obvious, yet unique, approach--especially I think illustrative for beginning-to-intermediate birders.
Wavetamer Adventures - Tom Watson

Praise for The Crossley ID Guide: Eastern Birds:"What a fantastic book. I realized at once what all the other great books were lacking. This IS an 'ID' book, not an in-depth reference on bird data but a unique way of expressing easy ID in the field. It's perfect. The multiple positions in the pages are phenomenal--why hasn't this been done before? This is totally unlike any other bird book out there ever!
Fatbirder - Bo Beolens
[Q]uite simply brilliant . . .
Utah Birders - Tim Avery

Praise for The Crossley ID Guide: Eastern Birds:"[The Crossley ID Guide] isn't a 'field guide' so much as an at home reference, or a learning guide. Looking more into it and thinking back to my early days I realized this is the perfect guide to give someone that is going to get into birding. . . . Seeing pictures and poses that you will actually see of these birds adds a new dimension to the bird guide book.
Nature Remains - Nina Harfmann

Praise for The Crossley ID Guide: Eastern Birds:"Crossley's intent is to create an interactive experience--involve a birder of any skill level in the active practice of field skills without their ever having to leave home. . . . Learning to look at the size and shape, behavior, probability and color of these stationary birds develops in the reader, a skill in seeing which later can be transferred to experiences in the field. . . . While the photography is clearly center stage in this new Guide, I especially appreciated lengthy sections within the introductory text on bird topography, molt, and a discussion of eclipse plumage! . . . It's not just another bird book. It's an inexpensive birding vacation.
Somewhere in New Jersey - Laura Hardy

Praise for The Crossley ID Guide: Eastern Birds:"[The Crossley ID Guide] is a really cool guide; [Crossley's] approach is unconventional and that's exactly what excites me most about it. . . . This is a book I want to spend time with and get to know better. I think Richard Crossley can make me a better birder.
Birdzilla

Praise for The Crossley ID Guide: Eastern Birds:"First impression: Wow! I love it. . . . The number of images in different plumages and postures will help the intermediate level birder move to the next skill level. . . . There is a lot of content for a $35.00 (list price) guide book. It's a buy recommendation from me.
Travel Editor - Ron Toft

Praise for The Crossley ID Guide: Eastern Birds:"I can't help feeling that The Crossley ID Guide, and the others set to follow in its wake, will have as major an impact on bird identification as the silicon chip has had on photography in recent years. . . . Crossley deserves nothing but praise for what he has achieved. I, for one, can't wait for the other bird ID books that are in the pipeline.
This.Great.Planet

Praise for The Crossley ID Guide: Eastern Birds:"A fantastic learning tool. Since my copy arrived, I have referred to it, almost daily.
Avian Review

Praise for The Crossley ID Guide: Eastern Birds:"The most outstanding feature of this book is the wide selection of excellent color photos of the 660+ eastern birds of USA/Canada, including rarities. The 10,000 photos used to compile this book show vibrant colors and nearly all the plumage variations (gender, age, season, race) one would expect to see in the field.
Towhee Blog - Harry Fuller
No raptor addict wants to be without this one.
Mon@rch's Nature Blog

Praise for The Crossley ID Guide: Eastern Birds:"This is an amazing reference guide in helping identify birds. . . . Every birder needs a copy of this book in their library and another copy on the dining room table for when you're having those 'bird' talks with friends. Congrats Richard Crossley for starting a movement to a new wave of ID Guides. I can't wait to see what you can come out with next!!
Reading the Markets blog

Praise for The Crossley ID Guide: Eastern Birds:"For anyone who is a birder in North America, since many of these birds are found across the continent, I can't imagine being without Crossley's book and its more than 10,000 images.
Manchester Bird Watching Examiner - Brad Sylvester

Praise for The Crossley ID Guide: Eastern Birds:"The Crossley ID Guide is my brand new favorite birding field guide. Its unique photographic presentation, visual species index, and inclusion of many species that other eastern bird guides lack allow the birder to quickly and easily identify not only resident east coast birds, but also many of the common vagrants that may be seen here.
Gardening with Binoculars - Anne McCormack

Praise for The Crossley ID Guide: Eastern Birds:"Given that there are already a half-dozen excellent field guides to birds of the US, is this new book useful to me? I answer, enthusiastically, yes! . . . Another feature of this birding guide that Peterson and Pearson never dreamed of; it's interactive! I can try to soak it all the images on the printed page, but if I need more information, I can find it with a click on the website. The web version has labels, comments, and questions not included in the book.
10,000 Birds - Corey Finger

Praise for The Crossley ID Guide: Eastern Birds:"I like The Crossley ID Guide and I think it is absolutely awesome that someone has come up with a new way of presenting bird images in a guide format. . . . It is a great reference, a beautiful book, and I strongly recommend that birders buy a copy.
Two-Fisted Birdwatcher

Praise for The Crossley ID Guide: Eastern Birds:"The best-looking bird book I ever saw. Too big to carry around for some people, but a two-fisted lug can manage it. This book's not a field guide anyway; it's an ID guide. It's made for birding at home. You can read it like a novel. With pictures. A million pictures of a million birds from a million angles in their actual surroundings.
Magnificent Frigatebird Blog - Amy Evenstad

Praise for The Crossley ID Guide: Eastern Birds:"The introductory pages clearly state the purpose of the book: to make the reader a better birder. As I first paged through the scenes, one of my initial thoughts was that this is more like a study book for birders, rather than a traditional guide to be used in the field. . . . The scenes themselves are a pleasure to study. The photographs . . . Are arranged to show as many different plumages and positions for each species as possible. Birds are shown in flight, swimming, perching, hunting, socializing, feeding, preening, even mating. . . . I give The Crossley ID Guide: Eastern Birds 5 Goldfinches out of 5.
Wildlife Conservation Examiner - Cathy Taibbi

Praise for The Crossley ID Guide: Eastern Birds:"Remember those Highlights for Kids magazines you used to read in waiting rooms, the ones where there was a background picture with dozens of strategically hidden images throughout, and you had to find them all? Well, that's actually what birding is all about, and that's exactly what this ground-breaking new book gives you; numerous photos of each Eastern bird species, birds of different sexes, ages and plumage, in real life poses and situations, tucked into the habitats or settings in which you're most likely to see them. In real life, you rarely get a perfect clear view showing all field markings--instead you get a speck, an impression, a fleeting glimpse. This Crossley ID Guide gives you a chance to make sense of those glimpses.
Surfbirds - Andy Stoddart

Praise for The Crossley ID Guide: Eastern Birds:"Photo-guides are becoming increasingly commonplace but it is safe to say that this new guide is unlike any you have seen before! . . . It is no exaggeration to say that this book has revolutionised photo-guides. . . . For anyone living in or visiting eastern North America this is a 'must-buy.'
The Drinking Bird

Praise for The Crossley ID Guide: Eastern Birds:"[The Crossley ID Guide] is, bar none, the closest anyone has gotten to actually showing what the birds look like in life short of a video recording, and there's no better way to train yourself to be a better birder than by seeing birds in life.
Bird Education Network - Dave Magpiong

Praise for The Crossley ID Guide: Eastern Birds:"Educators are most successful when properly prepared for their mission. The requisite tools for leading our 'students' from novice to competence include appropriate resources, an effective pedagogical approach, and a learning environment that fosters independence. The Crossley ID Guide can supply these tools to bird educators. . . . Crossley's 'outside the box' qualities make the guide a worthy addition to the bird educator's toolbox. Given the plates' backgrounds, bird educators will be able to not only teach identification skills but simultaneously deliver critical bird conservation messages related to habitat loss, degradation, and other threats. This is not just another field guide. The Crossley ID Guide: Eastern Birds can be a transformative resource for birders and bird educators at any level.
Birdchick - Sharon Stiteler

Praise for The Crossley ID Guide: Eastern Birds:"I get books sent to me all the time and the words, 'innovative' and 'revolutionary' and 'amazing' get tossed around. The books are good, but rarely live up to the hype. Richard Crossley's new Crossley ID Guide to Eastern Birds is a guide lives up to those words. . . . I do really like this book, it's interactive, it challenges you to think of birds in their habitat and it gives you so many ways to prep for how you might observe the birds in the wild. Many of the pages can serve as a quiz to help you age and sex each species. . . . This book is definitely worth having your bookshelf.
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette - Scott Shalaway
If you love diurnal raptors (vultures, eagles, hawks, kites, falcons), this is a must-have book.
JPM Photography Blog - Jim McCoy

Praise for The Crossley ID Guide: Eastern Birds:"A visual masterpiece, I'd recommend it to any birder of any level of experience.
Feathers and Flowers blog - Mike Powers

Praise for The Crossley ID Guide: Eastern Birds:"When I received a review copy of a this new field guide I immediately lost my next half hour, absorbed completely in paging through plate after plate of birds found in the eastern U.S. and Canada. . . . After spending a little time with this guide, a simple, direct statement sums up the general consensus: 'This is wow!'
DC Birding Blog - John Beetham

Praise for The Crossley ID Guide: Eastern Birds:"The Crossley ID Guide: Eastern Birds is a guide that all birders will want for study and reference. Its large and detailed plates come closer than those of any bird guide to replicating the experience of seeing birds in the field. It should be especially useful for intermediate birders who want to move beyond puzzling out field marks to identifying birds according to size, shape, and behavior.
About.com Guide to Marine Life - Jennifer Kennedy

Praise for The Crossley ID Guide: Eastern Birds:"My most dedicated birding is usually done on the water, when I'm trying to point out and talk about various seabirds while working on a whale watch boat. So my perspective in reviewing this book is from a person looking for a good guide to have aboard the boat. And for that, this book is perfect. . . . This is a great birding study guide and reference book, with helpful images and interesting text covering Eastern waterbirds and landbirds. . . . You'll love it.
Dig Deep

Praise for The Crossley ID Guide: Eastern Birds:"Each fresh page is a birder's Utopia--a bush bursting with warblers, a sky full of raptors, a seascape crammed with seabirds. The plates invite us to pore over them--there's so much to see and notice--and to interact with the images, building up an impression of the characteristics of each species from the many images. . . . Does the book live up to all the superlatives that have been lavished upon it? I'd have to say, 'Absolutely!' This book really will change the way many people approach birding.
OC Warbler

Praise for The Crossley ID Guide: Eastern Birds:"If his plate of Cedar Waxwings doesn't give you a pretty good grip on what the bird can look like, both close up and at a distance, in flight and standing still, nothing will.
Dreaming Tree - Lana Gramlich

Praise for The Crossley ID Guide: Eastern Birds:"All in all, this is a beautiful, informative and well-made book, available for a good price. It would make a great addition to any naturalist's collection.
ABA Blog - Rich Wright

Praise for The Crossley ID Guide: Eastern Birds:"Though the guide covers only the 'eastern' states and provinces, it includes a great many more typically western species, too, among them the specialties of the Black Hills and Pine Ridge, which are given short shrift (if any shrift at all!) in competing titles. Crossley's texts--both the brief species accounts and the prose introductions to larger groups--are engaging and accurate, and the half dozen pages 'How to Be a Better Birder' will encourage beginners and many, many others to start looking at birds in fresh new ways. This wealth of information, verbal and visual, should make The Crossley ID Guide absolutely essential to any birder's bookshelf.
Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel - Paul Smith

Praise for The Crossley ID Guide: Eastern Birds:"This is not your father's bird guide. Crossley's book utilizes multiple photographic images of each species to depict aspects of appearance, behavior, life stages and habitat.
Connecticut Audubon Society - Scott Kruitbosch

Praise for The Crossley ID Guide: Eastern Birds:"There is so much to explore and look at in this book with all of the photos. It will definitely help birders of all experiences. You should not hesitate to pick it up, as it will be a helpful addition to your birding library.
BrdPics blog - Bill Schmoker

Praise for The Crossley ID Guide: Eastern Birds:"I had discussed the book a few times with the energetic author, Richard Crossley, and knew it would be groundbreaking, unique, & valuable. It didn't disappoint! . . . I congratulate Richard on this monumental effort and for coming up with a bird guide concept so new and yet so potentially helpful to birders across the spectrum of ability and experience.
North American Birding blog - Chris West

Praise for The Crossley ID Guide: Eastern Birds:"Crossley has done a wonderful job conveying his method of birding. Look, see and recognize. Sometimes known as birding by GISS or General Impression of Size and Shape. With the addition of habitat, probability and a few field marks here and there, one can identify any bird in the world. . . . In opening this book, you're taking an interactive journey into the field, studying what each bird looks like in various plumages, angles, positions, etc.
Round Robin - Hugh Powell

Praise for The Crossley ID Guide: Eastern Birds:"The Crossley ID Guide pulls on many of these threads. The in-your-face assortment of poses and sizes . . . tries to recreate the sense of being out in the field. Crossley champions an approach to identification that values close observation but doesn't reduce birds to a collection of field marks.
Minneapolis Star Tribune - Val Cunningham

Praise for The Crossley ID Guide: Eastern Birds:"Crossley's book features large, lifelike scenes for each species. The beautiful montages are almost like mini-dioramas, with a 3-D quality, showing how birds look up close, at a distance, in flight and other contexts. . . . I like the emphasis on bird habitats, and plan to study them for a sense of which conditions suit which birds. . . . The Crossley book brings alive the importance of appropriate habitats to birds, and perhaps will encourage some birders to go beyond merely identifying and counting the birds they see. This new guide helps us get to know the birds.
Nerd Birder - Meg Smith

Praise for The Crossley ID Guide: Eastern Birds:"This ID guide is really practical in many ways and will definitely make identifying birds so much easier. It is definitely unique in its approach and the author clearly loves what he does and it shows through in every aspect of this guide. It is a guide all people living in or visiting the Eastern United States should have.
The Flying Mullet

Praise for The Crossley ID Guide: Eastern Birds:"I like that Crossley states in the introduction that this guide's aim is 'to both serve and expand the world of birding, make it more fashionable, current, and exciting.' Boy, did he knock that one out of the park. . . . It's stimulating and challenging all at once.
Portland Press Herald - Herb Wilson
To really develop confidence in identifying a bird species, you need to master five views: from above, from below, from head on, from tail on and from a lateral view (left or right). Crossley and colleagues make sure that views of all of all these perspectives are provided for each raptor.
Birding is Fun - Robert Mortensen
With the help of Brian Sullivan and Jerry Liguori, Richard Crossley has produced another fantastic tool for us to develop our ability to identify birds of prey. Because this guide focuses on one category of birds, we're getting multiple composite plates for many of the species, rather than just one. Each bird image is carefully selected for a purpose. The Crossley ID Guide books can indeed be used to help you figure out which bird species you saw. Yet, the real purpose of this series is that Crossley Guides can and should be used as a study workbook before you go birding. It's like practicing birding in the comfort of your home by birding in the book itself, then you can take those skills into the field and 'recognize' birds rather than having to 'identify' them.
Pacific NW Birder blog

Praise for The Crossley ID Guide: Eastern Birds:"This book represents a revolutionary paradigm shift in the design and presentation of a bird identification guide. . . . A splendid addition to your birding library . . . Or coffee table.
Vancouver Sun - Rob Butler
A fun guide. There is an abundance of images of birds of prey in various poses, in the air seen from below and above, and in different light conditions. . . . The book would be a nice addition to any location where people gather to watch hawks and to birders who want to hone their skills.
The Nature of Things

Praise for The Crossley ID Guide: Eastern Birds:"If you love birds, whether you are a dedicated and obsessive birder, a backyard birder, or just someone who enjoys birds and wants to know more about them, you need to check this book out on your next trip to the bookstore.
Birding Mongolia - Axel Bräunlich

Praise for The Crossley ID Guide: Eastern Birds:"The scenes capture the birds as one would see them in reality, contrary to most other field guides, which present birds in an idealised style. . . . Studying the scenes will certainly help to prepare for the field, or to appreciate what one has just encountered outdoors.
Birdfreak.com

Praise for The Crossley ID Guide: Eastern Birds:"I really love this book. . . . It is magnetic: it draws everyone to it with its energetic scenes of birds.
Greg Laden's Blog

Praise for The Crossley ID Guide: Eastern Birds:"The Crossley ID Guide is a large format systematic bird identification resource with a number of unique features that make it well worth its remarkably low price. . . . The very strong features of the Crossley guide, however, prompt me to add it without reservation to the list of bird books you must have on hand if birding in the Eastern US or Canadian region is your thing.
About.com Birding/Wild Birds - Melissa Mayntz
Richard Crossley takes his innovative approach to bird identification to the next level with The Crossley ID Guide: Raptors. Along with the insights of co-authors and renowned raptor experts Jerry Liguori and Brian Sullivan, Crossley presents the 34 diurnal raptors of North America in stunning detail, combining conversational text and rich composite photographs to create an identification guide that birders of all experience levels can not only learn from but also enjoy, appreciate and read over and over again, rediscovering raptors on every page.
Nemesis Bird - Alex Lamoreaux
Contains detailed species accounts with more identification tips and a plethora of useful information. The Crossley ID Guide: Raptors is a great addition to any birder's library.
A Charm of Finches - Penny Miller
What the book is especially good for is to study between field trips to improve your knowledge of field marks and plumages when you have time to really study the differences. I especially liked the quiz pages where multiple similar species are shown sitting and in-flight, from various aspects, with the opportunity to determine the identification on your own before looking at the key.
Another Bird Blog - Philip Slade
The whole book is based upon this pioneering approach to bird identification, a method employed in the first Crossley Guide and continued here to even better effect. The new guide is an ideal way for beginner or novice birders to learn about raptors and an opportunity for the more experienced to sharpen up their skills on the 'Mystery Image' pages.
Ornithologist and Author ald S. Heintzelman

A valuable addition to the numerous other North American Falconiform raptor identification guides, and one that hawk watchers, and birders generally, will want to include among their raptor identification aids.
Avian 101 blog - H.J. Ruiz
This guide makes that process of identifying quite easy, by visualizing and comparing with the help of a number of superb plates, colorful and razor sharp images. The information about all the species is comprehensive and precise as much as clear and intelligent. This ID Guide is a must have as part of your library.
It's a Bird Thing - Judy Liddell
Many volumes on raptors seem to assume that watching this group of species happens primarily at hawk watch sites during migration. For me, my greatest enjoyment of raptors comes from watching them at home in their breeding or wintering territories—perched in trees and on fence posts or cliffs. This will be a book I will turn to time and again to study those that are spending time in my area or to internalize information that will be helpful when I travel. I would heartily recommend this book to any birder or nature-lover who wants to get to know better the birds they encounter.
KaHolly - Karen Roy
As soon as you open the cover of this newest Crossley ID Guide you know you've struck gold. The composite pictures are big, bold, and beautiful. Every habitat known to raptors is covered, different times of day are featured, maps and 'detailed species accounts' are included.
Jerry's Birding/Digiscoping Blog - Jerry Jourdan
Take the best of Jerry Liguori (author of Hawks from Every Angle and Hawks at a Distance), add the pioneering composite 'style' of Richard Crossley, the foremost birding knowledge of Brian L. Sullivan, and you have a Raptor ID Guide that should become the #1 reference guide for many years to come. This new Raptor guide is L.O.A.D.E.D!
JPM Photography blog - James McCoy
You don't need to be a specialist to enjoy this book, despite the amount of information presented. Everyone from the backyard birder to those of us who plan expeditions to see certain species can benefit from the knowledge painstakingly compiled by the authors here.
Outside My Window - Kate St. John
Birders and hawk watchers, you're going to love this book. The flood of photos provides enough images that you 'get it.' This is what the bird looks like in the field.
National Parks Traveler - Kirby Adams
It wasn't until I opened this book that I truly realized how inadequate a traditional field guide method is for identifying hawks. . . . With this book, you see the birds as you see them in the field. It's a book best perused while not birding. Spend some time immersed in the stunning double-page color plates. You'll begin to get a feel for what you need to look for. It's like training to be a pilot in a flight simulator. You're training to be a better raptor-watcher in the pages of a book. . . . I can't decide if the magnificent natural history and technical identification tips of the text is my favorite part of the book, or if the jaw-dropping plates continue to take the prize. Thankfully, you need not decide, as you get it all in one book.
Backyard Birder - Dorothy Borders
[A] brilliant innovation in the depiction of birds for identification. . . . This ID guide, like Crossley's earlier works, are ideal tools for the birder to use to familiarize him/herself with the shape and appearance of these fascinating raptors before going birding. Returning from a birding trip, they can be used again to review one's notes and confirm identifications. They are, in short, an essential addition to birding literature and may, in time, have the same kind of impact as the revered Peterson.
American Press Travel News - Bob Epstein
A flying away winner!
Fayetteville Observer - Kecia Stewart
I have plenty of bird guide books as I do consider myself a bit of a bird nerd. The one thing all my guide books have in common is they show one picture of a single bird, usually perched in a tree. That's good if you're looking out the window at a bird feeder, not so good if you're trying to identify a bird on the wing. That's where The Crossley ID Guide: Raptors comes in handy. . . . With this book you don't get just one image of a bird—there are so many different images for each one that the picture panels take up multiple pages.
Oregonian - Terry Richard
If you love raptors, you will love this book.
Mongabay.com - Gabriel Thoumi
The Crossley ID Guide: Raptors is the most complete guide to North American raptors. It covers all of North America's diurnal raptor species except owls. While The Crossley ID Guide: Raptors helps us learn the raptors as we see them, its greatest value is that we can study the raptors from the comfort of our own homes.
Carolina Bird Club Newsletter - Steve Shultz
An excellent resource to use in studying these often confusing birds. . . . [W]hat I especially like about the book are the plates that show similar-looking birds together.
Pacific NW Birder - Greg Gillson
Three books in one! Annotated ID plates similar to the original Crossley ID Guide to birds. Expert in-depth species accounts covering status, distribution, and detailed plumage and flight style ID. Photo quizzes and answers. I really like this book.
Hawk's Aloft - Gail Garber
Eye candy! . . . The Crossley Guide will appeal to the rank beginner, the casual observer and the dedicated enthusiast. It is a must have addition to everyone's library!
Birdwatching Magazine
More useful, more natural, and more fun. It includes the condor and lets 34 raptor species spread their wings across 163 pages. Text descriptions fill another 96 pages, and 32 collages permit comparisons of different species.
Birdcouple blog - Warren and Lisa Strobel
In a word, stunning. . . . Birdcouple was hooked most of all by the quizzes at the back of the book. Raptors from above, below, perched, at sunrise. Amazing and informative. The only sad thing is how many birds we mis-ID'd.
10,000 Birds - Donna Schulman
[The Crossley ID Guide: Raptors] carves out a unique niche amongst hawk identification books, that of an identification tool that teaches as you read, that creates opportunities for interactive learning as a part of the identification and reference process. . . . Fills a niche surprisingly untouched by previous guides.
Library Journal
09/01/2013
This revolutionary guide to hawks, eagles, falcons, and their allies features 101 arresting, full-page color plates that are each composites of multiple individual photos against natural backgrounds of raptors in varying distances and attitudes. An expert, substantial text.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780691157405
  • Publisher: Princeton University Press
  • Publication date: 4/7/2013
  • Series: The Crossley ID Guides
  • Pages: 304
  • Sales rank: 98,544
  • Product dimensions: 7.20 (w) x 9.90 (h) x 0.90 (d)

Meet the Author

Richard Crossley is an internationally acclaimed birder and photographer and the award-winning author of "The Crossley ID Guide" series (Princeton/Crossley Books), which has been recognized for its pioneering approach to bird identification. He is also a coauthor of "The Shorebird Guide" and the cofounder of the Pledge to Fledge global birding initiative, and he is working on multiple birding projects involving mixed media and new technologies such as birdcams. Jerry Liguori is the author of "Hawks from Every Angle" and "Hawks at a Distance" (both Princeton). He has been studying raptors throughout North America for more than twenty-five years and has conducted hawk counts at numerous spring and fall migration sites. Brian Sullivan is the coauthor of the forthcoming "Princeton Guide to North American Birds". He is eBird project leader and photographic editor of the Birds of North America Online at the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, as well as photographic editor for the American Birding Association's journal, "North American Birds".

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Table of Contents

Preface 5-6
Introduction 7-9
Raptor Topography 10-11
Species Accounts Images, Accounts

  • Turkey Vulture 12, 175
  • Black Vulture 16, 177
  • Crested Caracara 22, 179
  • California Condor 24, 180
  • Bald Eagle 26, 183
  • Golden Eagle 30, 186
  • Osprey 36, 190
  • Northern Harrier 40, 192
  • Sharp-shinned Hawk 44, 195
  • Cooper's Hawk 48, 197
  • Northern Goshawk 54, 200
  • Red-tailed Hawk 60, 203
  • Swainson's Hawk 70, 209
  • White-tailed Hawk 76, 212
  • Ferruginous Hawk 78, 214
  • Rough-legged Hawk 82, 217
  • Red-shouldered Hawk 88, 220
  • Broad-winged Hawk 92, 223
  • Gray Hawk 98, 226
  • Short-tailed Hawk 100, 228
  • Harris's Hawk 102, 230
  • Common Black-Hawk 104, 232
  • Zone-tailed Hawk 106, 234
  • Snail Kite 110, 236
  • Hook-billed Kite 114, 238
  • Swallow-tailed Kite 116, 240
  • Mississippi Kite 118, 242
  • White-tailed Kite 122, 243
  • American Kestrel 128, 245
  • Merlin 132, 248
  • Peregrine Falcon 136, 251
  • Prairie Falcon 140, 254
  • Gyrfalcon 144, 256
  • Aplomado Falcon 146, 259

Mystery Photo Images 18-21, 34-35, 42-43, 46-47, 50-53, 56-59, 66-69, 74-75, 80-81, 86-87, 94-97, 108-9, 124-27, 142-43, 147-71
Mystery Photo Answers 261-283
Glossary 284
Acknowledgments 285
Index 286

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