is a comprehensive field guide to the birds of North Borneo, written by Max C. Thompson, a noted ornithologist and conservationist. The book was first published in 1951 and has since become a classic reference work for birdwatchers and naturalists.
North Borneo, which is now known as Sabah, is located on the northern part of the island of Borneo, in Southeast Asia. The region is home to a rich diversity of bird species, many of which are endemic to the area. Birds from North Borneo provides detailed information on over 600 species of birds found in the region, including descriptions of their appearance, behavior, habitat, and distribution.
The book is organized taxonomically, with each species given a brief overview followed by a more detailed description that includes information on its physical characteristics, behavior, and vocalizations. The descriptions are accompanied by high-quality illustrations by the renowned bird artist George Ernest Lodge, which show the birds in various poses and angles to aid in identification.
In addition to the species accounts, Birds from North Borneo also includes a general introduction to the region’s ecology and avifauna. This includes information on the different habitats found in the region, as well as the conservation challenges facing its bird populations. The book also includes a glossary of bird-related terms and a comprehensive index to help readers navigate the text.
One of the strengths of Birds from North Borneo is its attention to detail. Thompson was an experienced field ornithologist who spent many years studying the birds of the region, and his descriptions are based on extensive firsthand observation. The book includes detailed information on the birds’ behavior, including their feeding habits, vocalizations, and breeding biology. This information is useful not only for identification but also for understanding the birds’ ecology and conservation needs.
Another strength of the book is its illustrations. Lodge’s paintings are renowned for their accuracy and detail, and they remain some of the best depictions of Bornean birds available. The illustrations are also accompanied by useful notes that highlight key features for identification and provide additional information on behavior and habitat.
Birds from North Borneo is not just a field guide, but also a valuable historical document. The book provides a window into a time when much of the region’s avifauna was still relatively unknown, and it reflects the excitement and curiosity of early naturalists exploring a new frontier. The book is also a testament to the dedication and perseverance of Thompson and other early conservationists, who recognized the unique biodiversity of the region and worked to protect it.
Today, Birds from North Borneo remains an important resource for birdwatchers, naturalists, and conservationists interested in the birds of Southeast Asia. The book has been updated and revised over the years, but its core content and illustrations remain largely unchanged. It continues to be a valuable reference work and a testament to the beauty and diversity of Borneo’s avifauna.
In conclusion, Birds from North Borneo is a classic field guide to the birds of North Borneo, written by a renowned ornithologist and illustrated by a renowned bird artist. The book provides detailed information on over 600 species of birds found in the region, including descriptions of their appearance, behavior, habitat, and distribution. The book’s attention to detail and high-quality illustrations make it a valuable resource for birdwatchers and naturalists, while its historical significance makes it an important document in the history of ornithology and conservation.