How many field guides are needed to cover all thespecies in the world?

Subject: How many field guides are needed to cover all thespecies in the world?
From: peter crow <>
Date: Tue, 8 Dec 2009 13:30:21 +1000
I cannot add anything intelligent ot the number of field guides question.

A few years ago I started collecting Field Guides both Australian and overseas.

I usually buy only at the Brisbane Lifeline Book Fest (Nest one towards the end of January) I have about ten and the most I've paid for one is $7. The most interesting and dearest is a Leach revised by Crosby Morrison, An Australian Bird book. Its quite recent. Published in 1959 and reprinted in 1968.


On 08/12/2009, at 8:15 AM,  wrote:

Message: 4
Date: Mon, 7 Dec 2009 19:43:38 +1100
From: "Greg Little" <>
Subject: RE: [Birding-Aus] How many field guides are needed to cover
        all     thespecies in the world?
To: "'L&L Knight'" <>,      "'Birding Aus'"
Message-ID: <>
Content-Type: text/plain;       charset="iso-8859-1"


I started, a few years ago, collecting field guides, usually inexpensive second hand books as I come across them but also some new books. Wished
I had started years ago. Some of these books have interesting
geographical information but are often just nice pictures and some
information of the birds of a country. I prefer the painted images
rather than photo guides. I figure I am unlikely to ever get to every
country in the world but could easily collect enough field guides to
cover all the birds of the world. While there are lots of expensive
books from the 1800's and earlier bird field guides are a genre that
started only early in the 1900's. Some guides cover a region such as
Britain, Europe and parts of the Middle East and North Africa but it
would be nice to get a guide for each country. So the answer to your
question, I don't know, but it should not take that many books or too
much money to collect enough to cover the world. However another way to
get good information on all the birds at a reasonable price is to buy
the Handbook of the Birds of the World as they are produced. Apparently
there are quite a few people who collect field guides. It would be
interesting to form a group to notify when a guide is seen in a shop
somewhere. For example. A second hand bookshop on the main street in
Hamilton, near Newcastle, NSW, has a heap of good but expensive bird
books, not just field guides.

Greg Little


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