ANATIDAE TO ALCIDAE: A COMPENDIUM OF INFORMATION ON IDENTIFYING, AGEING AND SEXING WATERBIRDS, DIURNAL RAPTORS AND GALLINACEOUS BIRDS IN THE HAND By Peter Pyle, with Steve N. G. Howell, Siobhan Ruck and David F. DeSante, illustrations by Steve N. G. Howell and Siobhan Ruck. Slate Creek Press, California, 2008. 848 pages; 556 black-and-white figures; 71 tables; 289 bar graphs. ISBN 978-0-9618940-4-7. Paperback, $88.00. This book is the long-awaited part 2 of `Pyle', long regarded as the North American counterpart of `Svensson' (or, more precisely, his Identification Guide to European Passerines). The title is a good summary of what the book is about; it presents detailed information on identification, moult, ageing and sexing of North American non-passerines, from ducks, geese and swans through to the auks. `Near passerines', from doves to woodpeckers, were dealt with in part 1. As in part 1, an excellent introduction precedes the species accounts, and covers topography, measurements, moult (in some detail), ageing and sexing techniques, and so on. Some 310 species and 276 subspecies are dealt with (compared with 392 and 856, respectively, in part 1), which comprise all the species which have bred in North America together with annual visitors. Most of the species accounts stretch from one to three pages, although some are longer, with standard headings, including `Geographic variation', `Moult' and `Age/sex' (in the last, distinct age/sex groupings from juvenile through to adult are described). 

Volume: 
Issue 5
Start Page: 
284
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