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Guide to the Birds of Costa Rica Paperback – May 12 2003


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Guide to the Birds of Costa Rica + Birds of Costa Rica: A Field Guide + The Wildlife of Costa Rica: A Field Guide
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  • Birds of Costa Rica: A Field Guide CDN$ 19.75

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 632 pages
  • Publisher: Cornell University Press; 1 edition (May 12 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0801496004
  • ISBN-13: 978-0801496004
  • Product Dimensions: 23 x 15.5 x 3.2 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 907 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #87,229 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)


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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Harry van Oort on Oct. 28 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Im a Stutch fan, and this book is great. old standard. Does not have range maps, unfortunately.

Also, not sure why but a bunch of the colour plates were cropped - so bits of some birds are missing. Makes it look like some cheap black-market reproduction. I cross compared with a book purchased in Costa Rica, and it had the same issue, but I can't imagine the original printings were like dat.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Genevieve Bertrand on Jan. 28 2004
Format: Paperback
Like all the readers before me, I found this book unbelievably complete and thorough, compeling and mesmerizing. The color llustrations are beautifull. The text his precise and informative, from an overview of each bird family to description, habits, voice, nest, status and range of each bird. An absolute must-have for any bird- or Costa Rica lovers! A hundred times the informations in the Birds of North America... (which I still really really like!)
Like the Quetzal calls: "very good, very good..."!
The book is a bit heavy and I agree you should remove the central plates and only bring the illustrations on your field trip.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By PM on Feb. 13 2003
Format: Paperback
Costa Rica is a bird watching paradise. I ought to know - my wife and I wrote the guidebook, "Adventure Guide to Costa Rica," and we payed special attention to birding spots around the country. Please check our book out as well. Bird watching may be the perfect eco-tourism activity because of its low environmental impact as well as its benefit to the local economy. Gary Stiles title is a very helpful guide for both experienced and amateur birders and the color plates aids in identifying indigenous and transient species. Thorough.
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Format: Paperback
I have lived on the Pacific of Costa Rica for 5 years and find myself constantly referring to this book - one that was recommended to me by virtually every person I spoke to who knew I was relocating to Costa Rica.
For other fans of this book, you may be interested to know that one of the authors, Alexander Skutch, recently passed away at the age of 99. He was a long-time resident of Costa Rica and long admired in ornithological circles. A memorial service was held for Mr. Skutch on May 20th - his 100th birthday - at the Tropical Science Center in Perez Zeledon, in the Southern Zone of Costa Rica.
Please refer to an article in The Tico Times, May 14, 2004 edition.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Pajarito on April 4 2007
Format: Paperback
This book is a "must" for Costa Rican birders - at least until the reviews are in on the new "Helm Guide" by Richard Garrigues due out in June 2007. That said, there are a few age-related drawbacks to Skutch's tome that should be borne in mind. Range information is quite out-of-date. For example, there is no mention of the Sandwich Tern colony that exists off Manuel Antonio National Park. Melodious Blackbird is treated as extremely rare, whereas it is now quite common. Maps included in the book are also quite antiquated. The user should obtain a separate highway map of Costa Rica. There are no species range maps, and the range descriptions given are a bit difficult to get used to. (Range maps for mountainous countries are difficult anyway, since range is often as much about elevation as it is about latitude). DO NOT cut out the plates and ignore the text! The range information in the text is essential to identifying many species. Moreover, it tends to be more accurate than the cursory range information included with the plates. The illustrations are generally very good, but not up to modern standards. In particular, pay attention to the WRITTEN descriptions of the birds, which are quite accurate. This is especially important when considering the SIZE of the bird, since the plates are NOT drawn "to scale" and birds illustrated as being the same size might not be so in real life. These are small quibbles, however. This book is generally very good to excellent. If you are a birder, you need this book.
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By A Customer on Jan. 31 2004
Format: Paperback
This book along with the essay collection "Costa Rica : The Last Country the Gods Made" should be owned by anyone who loves Costa Rica, even if they think they despise nature studies as dry and limited. This book's spirit is undeniable.
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By z on Sept. 24 2003
Format: Paperback
It is hard to add much to the reviews provided by readers. The book is a superb guide to the birds of Costa Rica. It is a bit heavy and many guides cut the text out and bind the pictures into something a bit lighter for the field.
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Format: Paperback
Excellent book, invaluable for field and in-hand identification of birds in Costa Rica. If I could offer criticism, we need a more up to date edition (many species' range information needs updating a little) and species with strong population clines need more plates (eg Caribbean versus Pacific races). For birders visiting in the winter an extra book for US species (I recommend The North American Bird Guide by David Sibley) will compliment Stiles & Skutch for many variable and eclipse plumage migrants.
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