Cover image for A field guide to the birds of the Indian subcontinent
A field guide to the birds of the Indian subcontinent
Kazmierczak, Krys.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
New Haven [Conn.] : Yale University Press, [2000]

Physical Description:
352 pages : illustrations (some color), maps (some color) ; 22 cm
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
QL691.I4 K39 2000 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks

On Order



This book is an up-to-date, authoritative, field guide to the birds of India. It covers all of the 1,300 species of birds found in Pakistan, India, Nepal, Bhutan, Bangladesh, and Sri Lanka, and will be an essential companion for anyone traveling to these countries.

The text gives concise information on field identification (including voice) and provides details on habitat, altitudinal range, and status. A color distribution map is also given for every species. The 96 plates illustrate all 2,300 species recorded in the region (including a few extralimital birds which may in future occur). Female plumages are included if different from the males, and some juvenile plumages and distinct races are also shown where relevant.

Reviews 1

Choice Review

Previous field guides to the Indian subcontinent's complex, 1,300-plus species of avifauna are incomplete and inconsistent. Now there are two good comprehensive titles, Kazmierczak's and Richard Grimmett et al.'s Birds of India, Pakistan, Nepal, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Sri Lanka, and the Maldives (1999). This review will therefore be of necessity largely comparative. Both books feature abundant color plates of high quality, detailed range maps, and succinct text on pages facing the species illustrations. Both have glossaries, lists of organizations, references, and indexes. Although Kazmierczak's color paintings, by Ber van Perlo, are very good, Grimmett's color plates by 12 gifted artists are not only of higher quality but are more numerous (153 versus 96), more accurate, and aesthetically pleasing. Kazmierczak's 1,300 distribution maps are bigger, easier to read, and unlike Grimmett's 1,200 maps, show political subdivisions of India. Kazmierczak's other major assets are consistent inclusion of vocalization descriptions, which Grimmett largely lacks, and use of a more orthodox phylogenetic sequence. Grimmett's smaller dimensions and flexible binding make it handier for field use, and it has better design, consisting essentially of plates and text on opposing pages and maps derived from his massive, hardbound book of the same title (CH, Jul'99), which has plates at a larger scale, extensive text, and bigger maps. Many will prefer Grimmett, but Kazmierczak's title is excellent in its own right; larger libraries should have both. Highly recommended. H. T. Armistead; Free Library of Philadelphia