From the second that I picked up Rare Birds of North America for the first time, I've been fascinated with all of the information that the authors included as well as the great drawings of each species. There's not another book that completely and fully covers the birds that rarely occur in North America.
The book covers 262 species from some of the more regularly occurring rarities to those that have only been found in North America one time. I'm personally very excited to see that the Orange-billed Nightingale-Thrush that Eric found in South Dakota back in 2010 is included and that my name is mentioned in the acknowledgements for information that I provided about the Hooded Crane in Indiana!
The authors provide a wonderful introduction that explains what it means for a bird to be rare and also describes many of the theories behind why rare birds get off course and show up where they shouldn't (among many other topics).
The species profiles are also full of information. Each one includes a thorough summary of where and how many times the species has occurred in North America. If it's one of the rarer species, all of the records of the species are outlined. Field identification is also discussed as are the habitats and behavior of the species. These pieces of information really help you to understand more about the species and what you should be looking for if you think that you might have found one of these rare birds.
If you are at all interested in finding and identifying rare birds or just simply learning about all of the crazy species that have shown up on our continent, this book is for you! It always helps to be prepared for whatever you might see when you are out birding.
Title: Rare Birds of North America
Authors: Steve Howell, Ian Lewington, and Will Russell
Publisher: Princeton University Press
Publication Date: March 5, 2014
We received a copy of this book from the publisher to review on NuttyBirder.com. The links are to our Amazon Affiliate account.