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Alström et al. Pipits & Wagtails of Europe, Asia and North America.

Pipits and Wagtails of Europe, Asia and North America 0713658347 Pipits and Wagtails 0691088349
Pipits & Wagtails of Europe, Asia and North America: Identification and Systematics
Alström, Per, Mild, Krister
Helm Identification Guides
Christopher Helm, London
0713658347 (Hardcover)
Alström, Per, Zetterström, Bill (color paintings, line drawings, distribution maps, color photographs, sonograms)
Table of Contents
Authors' Preface 8
Introduction 14
Objectives of this book 14
Materials and methods 14
Explanation of plates, text, maps and photographic section 15
Identification in general 25
Moult and ageing in general 27
Sexing in general 30
Species concepts 30
Nomenclature 35
Phylogenetic analyses 39
Colour plates 39
Species accounts 101
Family Motacillidae: pipits and wagtails 101
Genus Anthus pipits 101
Red-throated Pipit Anthus cervinus 105
Pechora Pipit Anthus gustavi 112
Meadow Pipit Anthus pratensis 120
Tree Pipit Anthus trivialis 132
Olive-backed Pipit Anthus hodgsoni 141
Water Pipit Anthus spinoletta 149
Rock Pipit Anthus petrosus 164
Buff-bellied Pipit Anthus rubescens 174
Rosy Pipit Anthus roseatus 184
Tawny Pipit Anthus campestris 192
Long-billed Pipit Anthus similis 200
Berthelot's Pipit Anthus bertheloti 214
Richard's Pipit Anthus richardi 217
Paddyfield Pipit Anthus rufulus 230
Blyth's Pipit Anthus godlewskii 237
Sprague's Pipit Anthus spragueii 247
Upland Pipit Anthus sylvanus 252
Nilgiri Pipit Anthus nilghiriensis 258
Genus Motacilla wagtails 262
Yellow Wagtail Motacilla flava 267
Citrine Wagtail Motacilla citreola 313
Grey Wagtail Motacilla cinerea 329
White Wagtail Motacilla alba 341
Japanese Wagtail Motacilla grandis 390
White-browed Wagtail Motacilla maderaspatensis 398
African Pied Wagtail Motacilla aguimp 407
Mekong Wagtail Motacilla samveasnae 419
Genus Dendronanthus Forest Wagtail 428
Forest Wagtail Dendronanthus indicus 429
Photographic section 437
Appendix: references to original descriptions 478
Bibliography 483
Index of English names 495
Index of scientific names 496
pipits, wagtails, Europe, Asia, North America, identification, systematics, Motacillidae, Anthus, Motacilla, Dendronanthus, science, nature, birds, ornithology, ecology, birdwatching, biology
English (en); bird names also in Latin (la)
From the Dust Jacket
Pipits and Wagtails is the first comprehensive guide to all the species and subspecies that occur in Europe, Asia, North Africa and North America. The detailed species accounts cover all aspects of identification (size, structure, plumage, bare parts, geographical variation, measurements, moult, ageing, sexing, voice, behaviour, distribution, and habitat). In particular, great care has been taken to illustrate and describe accurately the differences between all valid subspecies as well as differences relating to sex and age. There are 30 full colour plates that depict all the species and distinct subspecies in different plumages, and to help further with identification, there are almost 250 colour photographs, numerous line drawings, sonograms of the species' and subspecies' unique songs and calls, and colour distribution maps for each species (with the ranges of the subspecies marked). Systematics are discussed in great detail. Introductory chapters deal with identification, moult, ageing and sexing in general, species concepts, nomenclature, and phylogenetic analyses.
The unparalleled extent to which the authors – the world's two leading authorities in this field – have gone to cover all aspects of identification and systematics, including doing a complete taxonomic review, ensures that this is the ultimate reference guide for anyone interested in this group of birds.
My Summary
This book describes the three genera and 27 Holarctic species of birds in the Motacillidae family on 496 pages. (The number of 360 pages given on the Amazon site is incorrect.) That's an average of 18 pages per species. The species and subspecies are described in text, paintings, line drawings, photographs, tables, sonograms (sound spectrograms), and distribution maps. The paintings and photographs are in their own sections, and the text, maps and sonograms are in a third section, so you have to skip around a bit, but that cannot be avoided in a book of this scope. The White Wagtail alone has 49 pages in the text section devoted to its 9 subspecies, as well as 98 photos in the photograph section (plus 8 photos in the text section) and 6 plates with 54 paintings. This one species also has 44 sonograms of different calls and songs, 15 tables of body measurements, and three distribution maps. Therefore do not be misled by the term "identification guide" into thinking this is a field guide. It is rather an extremely detailed account of all the subspecies of pipits and wagtails of the northern hemisphere. In many cases you will need the bird in the hand to identify it.
This book is highly recommended for any specialist who needs to identify pipits and wagtails accurately, such as bird banders and museum co-workers. Of course the extremely hard-core birder can also add it to his or her library. The only two things missing in this book are a CD to complement the sonograms and the names of the birds in various foreign languages.
Robbin D. Knapp © 2003
See and/or order this title at
See and/or order this title at
See and/or order this title at
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