Birds of East Asia: China, Taiwan, Korea, Japan, and Russia

Birds of East Asia: China, Taiwan, Korea, Japan, and Russia

by Mark Brazil

Paperback

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780691139265
Publisher: Princeton University Press
Publication date: 02/15/2009
Series: Princeton Field Guides , #46
Pages: 528
Sales rank: 522,524
Product dimensions: 5.80(w) x 8.20(h) x 1.20(d)

About the Author

Mark Brazil is an experienced field ornithologist and the author of several books, including A Birdwatcher's Guide to Japan, The Birds of Japan, and The Whooper Swan.

What People are Saying About This

Susan Myers

Well-written and well-organized, this excellent book will be widely applauded by the professional and amateur birding community.
Susan Myers, Victor Emanuel Nature Tours

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Birds of East Asia: China, Taiwan, Korea, Japan, and Russia 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Soleglad on LibraryThing 10 months ago
This is both a quality and a much needed field guide for eastern Asia. Making it additionally important is being the only book in English (or any language) to describe and illustrate all the birds of this large geographic region. In all, 1,004 species are described and illustrated in 236 plates.The illustrations are done with very good quality. The artistry may look familiar since they are done by artists who¿ve produced other top-notch guides (e.g., Per Alstrom, Derek Onley). Due to the 13 different illustrators, the variation of artistry is noticeable between the families of birds; however, all are very good and do not present any distractions. Nearly every bird is illustrated with 2-9 plumages or angles. These represent differences between gender, seasons, and notable subspecies or races. A fair amount of attention has been given to noting the subspecies. Only a few birds (some tits, warblers, accentors, and vagrants) are shown with only a single image. Views of distinguishing field marks are shown in the tails and wings by illustrating birds in flight. If I had to pick on something in the plates, I¿d only note that the bright whites of the Phylloscopus warblers appear to be too stark.The text for each bird is a paragraph ranging from 14-40 lines. At least 50-60% is dedicated to concise, effective descriptions of the bird and its various plumages. These descriptions offer some very useful, detailed information; however, very little is offered in comparing the birds to similar species. A nice touch is the inclusion of a line or two dedicated to just ¿BP¿, or Bare Parts (i.e., bill, eyes, and legs).The remainder of the text gives a good account of the bird¿s distribution over the range. It also provides a brief summary of the habitat. The descriptions of the voices often do a valiant job at capturing the texture or pattern of the bird¿s song or calls, which will helpful when considering a look-alike species.Considering the large range covered, the maps do a good job at illustrating the birds¿ ranges. These ranges are a bit generalized in these 2x2cm maps, but are effective. Some of the more range-restricted birds, such as the Pryer¿s Woodpecker, require an arrow to draw your attention to the tiny island on which it lives. No map shows an area of less than 1,200 miles wide. This makes the maps for Taiwan endemics to be a little weak. The five different colors in the maps represent resident, summer, winter, migration, and scarce.What area is considered ¿East Asia¿ in this book? Both of the Koreas and all of Japan and its islands are covered. The eastern 1/3 of Russia and 1/5 of China are covered, ranging no further south than Hong Kong.This book is a must-have book for going to any of these areas. Its quality and completeness will serve you better than any other book I¿ve used or examined. The next best options for for only a more restricted range include the books (see below) by Viney, MacKinnon, Wu, Lee, or Shimba.I¿ve listed several related books below¿ 1) Atlas of the Beijing Birds by Zhao (ISBN 7503822570)2) Birds of China by De Schauensee3) The Birds of Hong Kong and South China, 8th ed. by Viney et al.4) A Field Guide to the Birds of China by MacKinnon et al.5) A Field Guide to the Wild Birds of Taiwan by Wu (ISBN 9579578001)6) A Photographic Guide to the Birds of Hong Kong by HKBS (9621428947)7) A Photographic Guide to the Birds of Japan and East Asia by Shimba8) A Field Guide to the Birds of Japan by Wild Bird Society of Japan9) A Field Guide to the Birds of Korea by Lee et al.10) A Photographic Guide to the Birds of Japan (ISBN 4582542301)11) Wild Birds of Japan (ISBN 4635070077)12) A Field Guide to Birds of the USSR by Flint et al.