This post presents 7 illustrations from 6 books that are designed to guide readers in the identification of bird species.
None of the images below have appeared previously in this blog. They are presented in chronological order.
Artist Gene M. Christman created this image for the 1961 edition of Brown and Weston’s Handbook of California Birds:
Next is a portion of Arthur Singer’s illustration for Birds of North America: A Guide to Field Identification:
And this is Buzzell’s drawing for the handbook’s title page:
The dedication to Talons: North American Birds of Prey includes an illustration by Millie Miller:
Scott Weidensaul created this illustration for his North American Birds of Prey:
Finally, the 1990 edition of Roger Tory Peterson’s A Field Guide to Western Birds includes an information-rich illustration by the author:
The illustrations above demonstrate the increasing sophistication of guide-book illustrations over time. More recent guides offer greater detail. The more-recent illustrations also show adult and immature birds, birds in multiple postures, and even elements of habitat and behavior.
A previous post shows illustrations from older field guides and considers their condor-related content: Field guides: 1904-1950.
Brown, Vinson, and Henry G Weston Jr. Handbook of California birds. Naturegraph. 1961.
Robbins, Chandler S, Bertel Bruun, and Herbert S Zim. Birds of North America: a guide to field identification. Golden. 1966.
Brown, Vinson, Henry Weston Jr, and Jerry Buzzell. Handbook of California birds. Naturegraph. 1986.
Miller, Millie, and Cyndi Nelson. Talons: North American birds of prey. Johnson, 1989.
Weidensaul, Scott. North American birds of prey. W. H. Smith. 1989.
Peterson, Roger Tory. A field guide to western birds. 3rd edition. Houghton Mifflin. 1990.