Cover image for The birds of Costa Rica : a field guide
The birds of Costa Rica : a field guide
Garrigues, Richard, author.
Personal Author:
Second edition.
Publication Information:
Ithaca, New York : Comstock Publishing Associates, 2014.
Physical Description:
xiii, 425 pages : color illustrations, maps ; 20 cm
"Field guide for identifying birds in the field in Costa Rica. Includes descriptions, range maps, and illustrations of all 903 species definitely known from Costa Rica, including pelagics and species regular to Cocos Island. Includes alphabetical quick-find indexes of groups and families on the inside back cover"--
General Note:
"A Zona Tropical publication."

Includes index.
Added Author:
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
QL687.C8 G37 2014 Adult Non-Fiction Non-Fiction Area

On Order



This is the one compact, portable, and user-friendly field guide the novice or experienced birder needs to identify birds in the field in the diverse habitats found in Costa Rica. It features descriptions and illustrations of all 903 species definitely known from Costa Rica, including pelagics and species regular to Cocos Island. Fifty-six of these species are placed in a "Rarities" section that includes accidentals, rarer pelagics, and species that have not been reported in more than twenty years.

The detailed full-color illustrations show identifying features--including plumage differences among males, females, and juveniles--and views of birds in flight wherever pertinent.Robert Dean has supplied more than 360 new illustrations, including sixty-four species that are illustrated for the first time in this edition. These include recent additions to the country list, pelagic species, Cocos Island species, and all accidentals recorded from the Costa Rican mainland. Range maps and nomenclature have been updated for this edition, which also has a new user-friendly organizational scheme and an alphabetical quick-find index of groups on the inside back cover.

Author Notes

Richard Garrigues is one of the preeminent birding guides in Costa Rica, with more than twenty-five years' experience leading birding and natural history tours.
Robert Dean is an avid birder and natural history illustrator. Both live in Costa Rica.

Reviews 1

Choice Review

Both the author and illustrator of this book are birders resident in Costa Rica. An illustrated section preceding the main text identifies the anatomic features of birds. In the text itself, bird illustrations are found on the right-hand pages, with matching descriptions and sketch maps indicating the geographic distribution of each species on the left. The guide covers Costa Rica's 820 resident and migrant birds, but omits pelagic birds not normally seen "from the mainland shores," along with species found only on Cocos Island (350 miles off the Pacific coast). The color illustrations are excellent. The table of contents lists a map of Costa Rica on the inside front cover of the book, but this feature was missing from the review copy. For more detailed information concerning native species, the guide discusses and refers readers to an earlier (1989) book on Costa Rican birds; no bibliography is included. Appendixes include a glossary, taxonomic notes, a list of Costa Rican birds, indexes of both scientific and common bird names in English, and a two-page chart featuring very small illustrations of 35 adult vultures and raptors in flight. Summing Up: Recommended. All levels. K. B. Sterling formerly, Pace University

Table of Contents

Adult Vultures and Raptors in Flight
Prefacep. ix
Acknowledgmentsp. xi
Introductionp. 1
Climate and Topography of Costa Ricap. 7
Map of Costa Ricap. 12
Anatomical Featuresp. 14
Glossaryp. 20
Species Accounts and Illustrations
Tinamousp. 24
Curassows, Chachalacas, Guansp. 26
New World Quailp. 28
Sungrebep. 30
Grebesp. 30
Ducksp. 32
Cormorantsp. 36
Anhingasp. 36
Pelicansp. 38
Frigatebirdsp. 38
Tropicbirdsp. 38
Boobiesp. 40
Storm-Petrelsp. 42
Shearwatersp. 44
Skuas, Jaegersp. 46
Gulls, Terns, Skimmersp. 48
Oystercatchersp. 54
Sunbitternp. 54
Herons, Egrets, Bitternsp. 56
Ibises, Spoonbillsp. 64
Limpkinp. 66
Thick-kneesp. 66
Storksp. 66
Plovers, Lapwingsp. 68
Stilts, Avocetsp. 72
Sandpipers, Alliesp. 72
Jacanasp. 84
Rails, Crakes, Gallinulesp. 84
New World Vulturesp. 90
Ospreyp. 92
Hawks, Kites, Eaglesp. 92
Falcons, Caracarasp. 110
Barn-Owlsp. 116
Owlsp. 116
Potoosp. 124
Oilbirdp. 124
Nightjars, Alliesp. 126
Swiftsp. 130
Swallowsp. 134
Hummingbirdsp. 138
Pigeons, Dovesp. 158
Parrotsp. 168
Cuckoosp. 174
Trogonsp. 178
Motmotsp. 184
Kingfishersp. 186
Puff birdsp. 188
Jacamarsp. 190
New World Barbetsp. 190
Toucan-Barbetsp. 190
Toucansp. 192
Woodpeckersp. 194
Ovenbirds, Woodcreepersp. 200
Typical Antbirdsp. 212
Gnateatersp. 222
Antpittasp. 222
Antth rushesp. 224
Tapaculosp. 224
Tyrant Flycatchersp. 226
Tityras, Becards, Alliesp. 252
Manakinsp. 256
Sharpbillp. 260
Cotingasp. 260
Jaysp. 264
Thrushes, Alliesp. 266
Dippersp. 270
Mockingbirdsp. 272
Silky-flycatchetsp. 272
Waxwingsp. 274
Gnatwrens, Gnatcatchersp. 274
Wrensp. 276
Vireosp. 284
New World Warblersp. 290
Tanagers, Secdeaters, Alliesp. 314
Pinches, New World Sparrows, Alliesp. 334
Old World Sparrowsp. 342
Grosbeaks, Burnings, Alliesp. 342
Muniasp. 352
Blackbirds, Oriolesp. 354
Eupboniasp. 364
Birds of Cocos Islandp. 368
Raritiesp. 372
Checklist of the Birds of Costa Ricap. 383
Species Indexp. 411
About the Author and Illustratorp. 425
Quick-Find Index