Superb Bird Guides

The Helm series of Field Guides and Identification Guides are a superb set of resources for birders, birdwatchers and ornithologists alike.

I have been birdwatching for more than 30 years and as I have become a more serious ornithologist I have become more and more aware of how good the books in the Helm series are, but there is no point in waiting to become an experienced birdwatcher before getting these books; start with the best.

I have written lenses on How to be a Good Birdwatcher and Where to Watch Birds in Thailand, now it is time for me to share this lens which lists all the bird books in the Helm Identification Guide series that I know of.

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Helm Identification Guides - Bird Family Accounts

The Helm Identification Guides are ornithological masterpieces, focusing on specific bird families and containing an unbelievable amount of information on their subjects. No serious ornithologist should be without at least some of these books.

I personally use "Pipits and Wagtails", "Raptors of the World" and "Shorebirds" regularly and they frequently help me sort out difficult identification problems.
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Helm Field Guides

Birdwatching Field Guides are books written to help birders and birdwatchers identify the bird species they see whilst out in the field.

The term “In the field” refers to being outside in any wildlife habitat be it forest, beach, open sea or wetlands.

Field Guides usually contain a large number of high quality plates depicting the birds along with a little text and often accompanied by a distribution map for each species.

The Field Guides published by Helm are particularly good and I own and regularly use a number of them. Whilst I have not looked at all the field guides listed here, I have used enough of them to know that they are of consistently high quality and would be confident in recommending any of them.

Helm Field Guides - Asia

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Helm Field Guides - Africa

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Helm Field Guides - South & Central America

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Helm Field Guides - North America

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Helm Field Guides - Oceania

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Helm Field Guides - Europe

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Helm Field Guides - Other

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Helm Bird Identification Guides Feedback

Please leave a comment

If you have ever used a Helm Identification Guide please leave a comment about it here. Any comments about the lens are welcome too.
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  • kohuether Jun 05, 2010 @ 6:53 am
    I see a bird around here a lot that I wish I knew what it was - watching it flit around amuses me to no end! Nice collection of guides here. :)
  • nickupton May 09, 2013 @ 11:20 am
    Well, the beauty of watching birds is that you can enjoy them for what they are and you do not really need to know their names. You can make your own bird names up too!
  • paperfacets Jun 04, 2010 @ 6:19 pm
    Very nice. I will have to look into these guides.
  • Sep 19, 2009 @ 5:59 pm
    Very helpful lens.
  • qlcoach May 31, 2009 @ 11:07 am
    Great information and excellent lens. I rated it 5 stars. I also voted for you on Squidom. Hope you will do the same and visit my lens about emotional healing. Gary Eby, author and therapist.

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