The book Estrildid Finches of the World was written over a period of 9 years and is intended for a wide audience, not only bird lovers and bird watchers, but also ornithologists and other scientists. Estrildid finches are among the most fascinating bird families of the Old World with surprising and special characteristics. The family of Estrildidae comprises 34 genera with 145 species and 239 subspecies, each having its own quirks!
All 145 species and their subspecies are described in detail and the unique distribution maps present the spread of all subspecies in different colors. The descriptions of the species are supported by beautiful photographs of the birds in their natural habitats.
These photos represent the work of close to 300 photographers from 40 countries around the world, whose achievements were vitally important to this huge project. Not only did they afford the author permission to use their photos, but they also provided valuable information on the species directly through their first-hand field experience. In fact, some species have never been illustrated photographically before. In addition, the author was very fortunate in that several renowned universities, such as Cambridge and Yale, were extremely helpful.
The reader will also be treated to photos of nestlings at different stages of their development, which were taken by bird breeders so as not to unnecessarily disturb the breeding birds in their natural habitats. The book depicts the largest number of mouth markings ever published, with 111 species being illustrated. Original photos show nestling mimicry of estrildid finches and their parasitic whydahs and indigobirds, making this a fascinating resource for evolutionary biologists.
The largest collection of estrildid finch mouth markings worldwide containing 111 unique photos, many never published before.
First book with all 145 species, described and showcased in photos taken in the wild.
Close to 300 participating photographers from 40 countries around the world.
Distribution maps of all species and subspecies.
First book with photos of the Alpine Mannikin Lonchura monticola.
Complete listing of parasitic whydahs and indigobirds vs. hosting estrildid finches.
Description and photos of a new estrildid finch species.
1,052 photographs of nearly 300 photographers from 40 countries.
146 distribution maps showcasing the species and subspecies.
Reviews: Nigel Collar of BirdLife International, Gabriel Jamie and Claire Spottiswoode of Cambridge University and University of Cape Town, wrote the comprehensive foreword to the book, as quoted:
'One of the pleasures of paging through this fantastic volume is to see the full force of this avian diversity on show.'
'Less obvious to most field observers, however, but beautifully showcased in this book, is the astonishing diversity in estrildid nestlings.'
'This magnificent book provides an authoritative summary of the state of our knowledge, on which we hope the author, his many colleagues and contributing new estrildid fans inspired by this book, will continue to build.'