168135

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I'm taking a field course this summer and they require that I get a field guide about my favorite organism. I would like to get one on birds, but I was also thinking that focusing on insects (taking an entomology course in the fall :D) or insects would be cool.

Does anyone have one that they recommend?
 

aspiringDVM

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I took a month-long entomology course last spring and enjoyed it. We used the Peterson field guide to Insects (the big one, not pocket size), which was okay and had some good information about identifying the different orders, basic anatomy, etc. It WAS NOT ideal for identifying most insects beyond order and family, but hey, that's what the internet is for.
During that class I had vivid and bizarre dreams about bugs every single night for a month, and it took a good six weeks after class ended before I stopped lunging after any bug within a ten-foot radius. So consider yourself warned :D
 

spyisis

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I have to say the iBird app on iPhone is one of the coolest birding tools I've seen. You get a compilation of 14 field guides with audio bird songs and all sorts of information on each bird. I love it!!
 
May 13, 2009
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If you're going to get one for birds, definitely check out the Sibley guides.
I just want to second this statement. I work at a wildlife clinic twice a week, and we have Sibley's "Guide to Birds" and "Bird Life and Behavior" and they are excellent. I enjoy reading them during downtime.

Good luck with your field course!
 
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168135

168135

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Thanks!

I think I might choose one on insects... I just emailed my prof to see what he recommends. We'll see though.

And thanks for the warning aspiringDMV. Most insects freak me out :p but I decided to look into it because the prof who teaches it is excellent. He let me sit in on a class, and it was pretty cool, and now I'm pretty excited for it.
 

eventualeventer

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Yay! Go for insects! There are so many insects that you really can't fit all of the species in even one area into one convenient book, so the more hard-core field guides deal with only one or two orders. Lepidoptera (moths and butterflies) and Coleoptera (beetles) are both good places to start -- common, diverse, and usually macroscopic. They're not really insects, but spiders are pretty cool, too, and their diversity of behavior is amazing.

I'll have to ask my dad what books he recommends -- he's an entomologist, or professional bug geek. :D