books on birds of the ACT

To: "chat line" <>
Subject: books on birds of the ACT
From: "Michael & Janette Lenz" <>
Date: Tue, 3 Oct 2006 19:16:08 +1000

Recent discussions on the chat line about books with info. on ACT birds have left me a bit troubled. Some comments were more political than helpful to those who had asked for relevant information.


We should remember that books are written with a certain set of circumstances in mind, and often for a certain audience. All books that were mentioned have their stronger and their weaker sides, some more of the one than of the other, and this balance may be different for different people.


I certainly appreciate the wealth of information in the HANZAB (Handbook of Australian, New Zealand and Antarctic Birds), and made an effort to buy all volumes. For others, HANZAB is far too detailed and contains far more than they ever want to learn about our birds, so they may not consult (and certainly not buy) this work. Likewise, for the ACT, not everyone wants to read the more involved prose of some works and prefers easier reading material that gives the general trend rather than the finer detail.


In other words, all the sources of information discussed have their niche irrespective of citation rates or not. Let?s be content with that and let the individual observer make her/his decisions. Outstanding pieces of work in the opinion of the relevant author(s) will be appreciated as such by the readership if truly so, without the need to put down the works of others.


Michael Lenz

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