Helm Guides – Albatrosses, Petrels and Shearwaters

With todays sea-watching events in Cornwall, this short review comes at a pretty good time. Firstly, the paperback copy i have is an ideal size for a big’ish pocket and wasn’t bought to sit on a shelf. I intend to use it in the field (if i ever get chance!). The plates are aimed mainly at identifying flying birds (which is very useful here in Cornwall!) and the aspects of plumage and moult that are discussed in the text are aimed at this. The plates are also arranged so that confusion species are shown together, some of which i admit i had not heard of!  The guide covers 137 species of Pelagic birds and has subspecies and phases fully illustrated. The information on pages opposite the plates is designed for use in the field, with useful tips for identification at sea, at close range or at distance. This book is a must for anyone hitting the headlands for a seawatch this autumn.

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