From the renowned author of the New York Times best seller The Sibley Guide to Birds, a comprehensive, beautifully illustrated guide to identifying birds in the field. Sibley's Birding Basics is an essential companion for birders of all skill and experience levels.With Sibley as your guide, learn how to interpret what the feathers, the anatomical structure, the sounds of a bird tell you. When you know the clues that show you why there?s no such thing as, for example, ?just a duck? birding will be more fun, and more meaningful. An essential addition to the Sibley shelf!The Sibley Guide to Birds and The Sibley Guide to Bird Life and Behavior are both universally acclaimed as the new standard source of species information. And now David Sibley, America?s premier birder and best-known bird artist, turns his attention to the general characteristics that influence the appearance of all birds, unlocking the clues to their identity.In 200 beautifully rendered illustrations and 16 essays, this scientifically precise volume distills the essence of Sibley?s own experience and skills, providing a solid introduction to ?naming? the birds. Birding Basics reviews how one can get started as a birder?the equipment necessary, where and when to go birding, and perhaps most important, the essential things to look for when birds appear in the field?as well as the basic concepts of bird identification and the variations that can change the appearance of a bird over time or in different settings. Sibley also provides critical information on the aspects of avian life that differ from species to species: feathers (color, arrangement, shape, molt), behavior and habitat, and sounds.