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Birds of Prey of Australia: A Field Guide

Field / Identification Guide

By: Stephen Debus (Author)

180 pages, plates with colour photos and colour illustrations; b/w illustrations, b/w distribution maps


Paperback | Sep 2012 | Edition: 2 | #199291 | ISBN-13: 9780643104365
Availability: In stock
NHBS Price: £28.50 $35/€32 approx

About this book

Birds of Prey of Australia is an illustrated field guide to diurnal raptors, a bird group that many people find among the most difficult birds to identify. Raptors are popular and iconic birds, and important ecologically as well as in legislation, with some species listed as threatened. Birds of Prey of Australia will enable people to more easily identify them. It also provides a brief overview of the biology of raptors and an indication of the current state of knowledge on them.

Birds of Prey of Australia has been completely revised and updated, with 15 years of new data, a section on difficult species-pairs (split-images providing direct contrast), and rearranged in modern field-guide format, making it easy to use and enabling rapid identification of 'difficult' raptors.

Birds of Prey of Australia will appeal to a wide range of readers, including ornithologists, raptor biologists, birdwatchers, wildlife rescuers/carers, raptor rehabilitators, zookeepers, naturalists, bushwalkers, ecological consultants, fauna authorities, park rangers, state forestry personnel and students.


Preface to the first edition
Preface to the second edition

Introduction: Birds of prey

Species descriptions
Unconfirmed vagrants and doubtful species
Difficult species-pair

Ospreys, genus Pandion
Eastern Osprey Pandion cristatus
Small kites, genus Elanus
Black-shouldered Kite Elanus axillaris
Letter-winged Kite Elanus scriptus
Pernine kites
Square-tailed Kite Lophoictinia isura
Black-breasted Buzzard Hamirostra melanosternon
Pacific Baza Aviceda subcristata
Australian endemic hawks, genus Erythrotriorchis
Red Goshawk Erythrotriorchis radiatus
Large kites and sea-eagles
Black Kite Milvus migrans
Whistling Kite Haliastur sphenurus
Brahminy Kite Haliastur indus
White-bellied Sea-Eagle Haliaeetus leucogaster
Goshawks and sparrowhawks, genus Accipiter
Brown Goshawk Accipiter fasciatus
Collared Sparrowhawk Accipiter cirrocephalus
Grey Goshawk Accipiter novaehollandiae
Harriers, genus Circus
Spotted Harrier Circus assimilis
Swamp Harrier Circus approximans
Booted eagles, genera Aquila and Hieraaetus
Wedge-tailed Eagle Aquila audax
Little Eagle Hieraaetus morphnoides
Falcons, genus Falco
Nankeen Kestrel Falco cenchroides
Brown Falcon Falco berigora
Australian Hobby Falco longipennis
Grey Falcon Falco hypoleucos
Black Falcon Falco subniger
Peregrine Falcon Falco peregrines

Threats, conservation and the future


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Stephen Debus has undertaken research on and written about raptors for 30 years. He completed a PhD and postdoctoral research in Zoology, on declining woodland birds. Stephen recently reviewed the conservation status of various birds for NSW Department of Environment and Heritage. He now works as an ecological consultant, and is an honorary research associate at UNE, doing projects on various raptors. He co-edits the BOCA journal Australian Field Ornithology, edits the Australasian Raptor Association (ARA) journal Boobook, and serves on the Australian Bird Study Association committee (handling the raptor special issues of Corella). Stephen has authored field guides on raptors and owls, contributed to ARA conference proceedings and participated in several Red Goshawk projects.

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