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This is a gift. For me personally, I found the binding very tight. I guess with use this will make it easier to flatten out the pages a little more. Looks good. Difficult to give you an honest review when I am not the one to use it.
Excellent guide with good drawings and appropriate information on bird i.d., behavior and locales. However, it is too thick to carry into the field easily. I keep it as a reference book in the car and carry the thinner "Sibleys Western Guide" in my birding backpack. One can never have enough birding guides. I also gave it as a gift to a friend who just wanted it to i.d. backyard birds.
I do wish that they had the common name of the birds in the appendix. I end up having to flip through looking at the pictures to find the bird in which I am interested or have seen. For instance, I wanted to find out a little more about mocking birds, but appendix does not have mocking bird. Otherwise, it is great. Lots of information about the birds. I particularly like that the size of the bird is listed. Helps me to rule out birds by size when trying to identify them.
It's a little bigger and a lot heavier than my previous field guide from Golden Press, but a few species names and classifications have changed since 1966, so I sprang for it. Especially helpful, a flap inside each cover has half the index, where it's easy to find. Even better, inside those flaps, where they fold out from the covers, are spreads of visual guides to the general appearance of bird families. I only wish the book had a checklist for my life list of sightings. I have to keep my 1966 book for that.
I love this book, don't get me wrong, and this is the second edition of it that I own. But, there is a flaw in it. When you come upon a flower, and go to your Peterson Wild Flower book to identify it, the book is arranged by color, making it easy to find what you are looking for. Bird books are not, and I wish they were.
This is a very useful book. I like it a lot, and use it in conjunction with a couple of other field guides to birds. It helps to complete the picture of whatever bird I'm trying to identify. In my opinion there is no one field guide to birds that is so complete and perfect that it can be used alone. Every guide has a different approach, and it's that combination of approaches that cements identification. I appreciate the information it supplies; it has been very helpful.