All The Birds of the World: Review

Subject: All The Birds of the World: Review
From: Noel Luff <>
Date: Mon, 9 Nov 2020 08:14:38 +1100
Further to Jason's comments I would like to add to his comments. There were a couple of other features which he did not cover. 

I do not own any of the previous publications from Lynx which preceded this one (17 volume Handbook or 2 volume Checklist). I do, however, subscribe to Cornell's Birds of the World, a resource which I use regularly. I also have a keen interest in taxonomy. This book covers both these interests

Each species has a QR code associated with it.This will take you to the e-bird page and from there it is a simple one click and you are at the bird in Cornell's Birds of the World. I purchased a bar code reader for less than $50 and it works a treat 

The other feature is that there is a "taxonomic circle" associated with each species. This circle is divided into  quarters. One quarter each for 
a) HBW/Birdlife International December 2019 (the current list)
b) eBird/Clements August 2019 (the current list)
c) Howard and Moore August 2018 (the current list)
d) IOC January 2020 (has been an update in July 2020)
There is an attempt to reconcile the four lists (which I found confusing)
If a particular bird is recognised in some list(s) as a species but not in all lists the bird is illustrated and the taxonomic circle is used to indicate this fact. The circle is also used to indicate to which species such a bird belongs. Sounds a bit confusing but it does work.
I appreciate the fact that this feature will date quickly but at the moment it is an excellent feature.

There is also an appendix for extinct birds.

It is also possible to download a list of endemics for each country. Australia ranks second for (369) behind Indonesia (557)

All in all a very big book, filled with lots of good stuff 

On Mon, Oct 19, 2020 at 9:03 AM Jason Polak <> wrote:
Dear Fellow Birders,

So, a few people asked me to write out my comments on the book "All the
Birds of the World" Edited by del Hoyo and published by Lynx. Here they are:

Wow, it's a huge book! The customs receipt lists it as 5kg. Also, it is
very well-packaged in a pretty much custom cardboard box.

It is also the most beautiful book I've ever seen. I've owned a lot of
bird books. I've seen and photographed all sorts of species. That kind
of thing gives you a good intellectual understanding of bird
biodiversity. But I've only ever seen around 500 species of birds.
Flipping through this book really slaps you in the face with the
diversity of birds. It's a unique experience.

The illustrations are really great. There is at least one per bird, but
two if the male and females are different as is often the case. There
are distribution maps and it comes with a laminated bookmark that also
indicates some of the abbreviations used. The illustrations themselves
are beautiful. Naturally with all the birds in the world you will
definitely not have the same space allocated to each species compared to
a local guide. Also, with some species you do not get a
breeding/nonbreeding illustration like for New World Warblers (family

It is well organized with drawn lines dividing family and genera. Let's
just say this book is monumental. I can imagine just browsing throught
his and having it inspire me to plan trips or just do research. It is
really something to browse and discover. Unhindered by boundaries of the
world, it is like a whole new perspective on birds.

There are small checkboxes to use this book as a printed world
checklist, with four boxes (perhaps to be used by families or spouses?).
I'm not going to mark up my copy though because I want to keep it pristine.

It's my most prized book now.

Happy reading,

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