Field Guides

Printed books to help you ID the birds.

Below are listed some of the many bird identification books available. One DOES NOT need to have all of them — any one will suffice for most beginners.
Most birders have a personal favorite, and we have listed some of the more common reasons given for each. We have also noted any disadvantages we know of.

Title. Author. Publisher.
Nickname. Why we like it

or dislike it.
Region covered.

Sibley Field Guide to Birds

David Allen Sibley Knopf, for National Audubon Society
SIBLEYs Excellent detailed drawings include many variations & sub-species, Has more info than many, separate regions make for lighter single books

(what's to dislike?)
several editions (Eastern NA, Western NA)

Stokes Field Guide to Birds

Donald & Lillian Stokes Little Brown
STOKES Uses real photos (some find easier to match to a real bird), Has more info than many, Easy quick index, Separate books for East & West

Photos may not show as many field mark details as drawings can offer
several editions (Eastern NA, Western NA)

Field Guide to the Birds of North America

National Geographic Nat. Geo.
GEO Multiple species per page make for easy comparisons

East & West species shown together (confusing to some)
North America

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This page is located at and is presented as part of the birding resources collection by Lois Richter, The Organizer, 530-758-5058. Copyright 2005.