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Atlas of Rare Birds

Art / PhotobookDistribution Atlas
Captivating stories of the very rare – birds not seen for centuries, birds brought back from the brink of extinction – illustrated with color photographs and maps

By: Dominic Couzens(Author)

240 pages, 200 colour photos, 61 colour maps

New Holland Publishers

Hardback | Aug 2010 | #207127 | ISBN-13: 9780262015172
Availability: Usually dispatched within 7 days Details
NHBS Price: £32.99 $43/€37 approx
Hardback | Aug 2010 | #183862 | ISBN-13: 9781847735355
Out of Print Details

About this book

A guide to some of the rarest birds in existence, brought together by the maps showing where in the world you can find them. The book focuses on 50 captivating stories of the very rare, including remarkable discoveries of species new to science, rediscoveries of species not seen for centuries and 'back from the brink of extinction' successes like Seychelles Magpie-Robin and California Condor. Each species has its own mini-chapter and the book will be broken down into key groups of species, with the five most amazing tales of island endemics, five most bizarre cases of a bird becoming threatened, and so on.

This is an accessible, readable and visually appealing take on a serious subject of threatened birds and possible extinctions – a topic that is constantly in the news due to increasing concerns over climate change and habitat destruction. The atlas format shows the global nature of the problem and brings together the many strands of the concerted bird conservation effort that is taking place on every continent. It also lends and element of accessibility to the reader as many of the species featured can be watched on birding tours these days.

"[...] The profiles of the 50 endangered birds in Atlas of Rare Birds are incredibly fascinating and well worth reading by anyone who appreciates birds, such as my aforementioned younger self. But as an adult, I find further reason to recommend this book. Couzens does not preach conservation in an overbearing manner, but instead lets the birds' predicaments speak for themselves. I don't see how anyone could read much of this book and not want to help."
– Grant McCreary (15-04-2008), read the full review at The Birder's Library

Atlas of Rare Birds is an accessible, readable, and visually appealing take on the serious subject of threatened birds and possible extinction.”
Northeastern Naturalist

“Evidently I love this book.”
– Charlie Moores, Talking Naturally


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Introduction   8

1. Back from the brink: Starting again with just a few survivors   14
   California Condor   16
   Kakapo   20
   Laysan Duck   24
   Seychelles Magpie-robin   28
   Crested Ibis   32

2. The perils of island living: Many threatened birds are confined to small spaces   36
   Ultramarine Lorikeet   38
   Floreana Mockingbird   42
   Kagu   46
   Junin Grebe   50
   Bali Myna   54

3. Threats in many guises: Peculiar ways to become threatened   58
   Tristan Albatross   60
   Black-eared Miner   64
   Montserrat Oriole   68
   Houbara Bustard   72
   Colourful Puffleg   76

4. Migrants: The difficulties of protecting birds on the move   80
   Aquatic Warbler   82
   Nordmann's Greenshank   86
   Northern Bald Ibis   90
   Kirtland's Warbler   94
   Whooping Crane   98

5. Unexpected Calamities: Once common birds in sudden danger   102
   White-rumped Vulture   104
   Sooty Falcon   108
   Regent Honeyeater   112
   Red-legged Kittiwake   116
   Lesser Flamingo   120

6. Lost causes? Optimism fades – or has gone completely   124
   Spoon-billed Sandpiper   126
   Brazilian Merganser   130
   Philippine Eagle   134
   Marvellous Spatuletail   138
   Po'ouli   142

7. Controversies: Conservation is rarely a simple business   146
   Spotted Owl   148
   White-headed Duck   152
   Grenada Dove   156
   Gurney's Pitta   160
   Spix's Macaw   164

8. Discoveries: Some unexpected ways to discover new species   168
   Algerian Nuthatch   170
   Nechisar Nightjar   174
   Hooded Grebe   178
   Udzungwa Forest Partridge   182
   Araripe Manakin   184

9. Rediscoveries: Missing birds found again   190
   Noisy Scrub-bird   192
   Forest Owlet   196
   New Zealand Storm-petrel   200
   Bruijn's Brush-turkey   204
   Madagascar Pochard   208

10. The pending tray: Are they out there, or not?   212
   Long-whiskered Owlet   214
   Night Parrot   218
   Pink-headed Duck   222
   White-eyed River Martin   226
   Ivory-billed Woodpecker   230

Further reading   234
Index   237

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Dominic Couzens is a full-time ornithologist based in Ferndown, Dorset. He has regular columns in BBC Wildlife and Bird Watching magazines. He is co-author of the best selling CD series Teach Yourself Bird Sounds and has written a number of books, including Bird Migration and Top 100 Birding Sites of the World, for New Holland.

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