Joined: 09 Mar 2008
Location: Reading, Berkshire, England
|Posted: Fri Oct 21, 2011 2:21 am Post subject:
|For some time I have been intending to add a complete list of the books I use. These cover mainly British or British and northern European flora and fauna. The list which is given below is a bit chaotic, may contain some errors, and may have omissions, but at least here it may help others. I hope to tidy it up eventually.
The only links here are to further booklists or to further information, such as reviews.
Wildlife Identification Booklist. Most specified are small enough for the pocket.
"What is that? The complete guide to Britain's wildlife, plants and flowers" by Paul Sterry. ISBN 978 0 276 44342 8 Readers Digest
"Wildlife of Britain. the definitive visual guide" DK/RSPB ISBN 978 1 4053 3484 6
These two are heavyweights, not for the pocket, talking of which, they are quite expensive too, about £20 each.
Largish pocket books:
"The complete guide to British Wildlife" by N Arlott, R Fitter and A Fitter Collins ISBN 0 00 219212 8
"Field Guide to the Wildlife or Britain & Europe" Ed Michael Chinery, Kingfisher (I have a Book Club edition with no ISBN but I believe it should be 0 -86272-210-1).
and these, of which I have many on my desk:
Plants (one on fish): Many (mostly A4 size) books by Roger Phillips:
The Hamlyn Guide to the Seashore and Shallow Seas of Britain and Europe by A C Campbell ISBN 0-600-34396-0
The Hamlyn Guide to the Flora and Fauna of the Mediterranean Sea by A C Campbell ISBN 0-600-35279-X
The Photographic Guide to Identify Seashells and Seaweeds by Roger Phillips, Elm Tree books ISBN 0-241-12028-4
For general insects, UK & Europe, I use mostly two books:
Collins "Complete British Wildlife Photoguide" by Paul Sterry. ISBN 0-00-220071-6 (Entirely photographs; captions only, no other text)
"A Field Guide to the Insects of Britain and Northern Europe" by Michael Chinery, Collins. ISBN 0-00-219216-0 (Coloured drawings, keys and text).
The most recent, and one of the most comprehensive:
A Photographic Guide to Insects of the New Forest and surrounding ara by Paul D Brock, Pisces Publications ISBN 978-1-874357-44-9
For a few pennies, I bought a used copy of this from Amazon UK:
Readers Digest Nature Lovers library "Field Guide to the Butterflies and other insects of Britain" ISBN 0 276 36007 9 Principal author Dr John Feltwell
(All books include damselflies).
Field Guide to Dragonflies of Britain and Europe by Klaas-Douwe B Dijkstra and (illustrated by) Richard Lewington, 2006, reprinted 2010, British Wildlife Publishing ISBN 9780953139941
It includes a section on the species to be found in each country. Most valuable is the comprehensive illustration, covering species, varieties and details not normally given in guidebooks. It is a (large) pocket size. This is probably the book to have if you can only have one on European dragonflies.
Coverage extends to Western Turkey, Cyprus, Algeria, Tunisia, The Azores, The Canaries and Madeira.
A field Guide to Dragonflies of Britain, Europe and North Africa by J d'Aguilar, J-L Dommanget and R Préchac. Collins ISBN 0-00-219436-8
The Dragonflies of Europe (revised edition) by R R Askew, Harley books ISBN 0-946589-75-5.
NHS/FSC Guide to dragonflies and damselflies of Britain ISBN 978-1-85153-863-8
Country Life Guides Dragonflies and Damselflies of Britain and Northern Europe by Bob Gibbons ISBN 0-600-33378-7
Land & Water Bugs of the British Isles by T R E Southwood & Dennis Leston, Pisces Conservation Ltd E-Book CD
Shieldbugs of Surrey by Roger D Hawkins Surrey Wildlife Trust ISBN 0-9526065-7-7
Hoverflies of Surrey by Roger K A Morris, Surrey Wildlife Trust ISBN 0-9526065-3-4
British Hoverflies. An illustrated identification guide, by Alan E Stubbs and Steven J Falk. British Entomological and Natural History Society 1983. Text and keys by Alan Stubbs, coloured plates* (190 species) by Steven J Falk. Softback ISBN 0 9502891 4 0, hardback 0 9502891 3 2
* Coloured drawings, so much better than photographs.
The format is about twice the page size of typical pocket guides.
Colour Guide to Hoverfly Larvae (Diptera, Syrphidae) by Graham E Rotheray. Dipterists Digest No. 9 ISSN 0853 7260
Flies of the British Isles by Colyer & Hammond. Wayne, Wayside and Woodland Series, 2nd edition 1968. ISBN-10 0723200041 ISBN-13 9780723200048 (Out of print since 2003). "The only modern English work providing a comprehensive survey of all families of British flies..." The illustrations include 25 colour plates of the quality for which the series is renowned.
Shire Natural History. Ants of the British Isles by G J Skinner ISBN 0-85263-896-5
Field Guide to the Bumblebees of Great Britain & Ireland by Mike Edwards & Martin Jenner. Countryside & Garden Conservation Series, Ocelli ISBN 0-9549713-0-2
Naturalist’s Handbooks 6. Bumblebees by Oliver E Prys-Jones & Sarah A Corbet, Cambridge ISBN 0-521-25975-4
New Generation Guide to the Butterflies and Day-Flying Moths of Britain and Europe by Michael Chinery (General Editor Sir David Attenborough). University of Texas Press, 1989. ISBN 0-292-75539-2. (Pocket size).
Many guides have enough detail to permit identification of the species most likely to be seen and perhaps also some very distinctive rarities. There is one book which will permit identification of every butterfly (360 species) and every day-flying moth (260 species) to be seen in Britain or mainland Europe. (A few recent discoveries are omitted).
Both sexes are shown and undersides where needed. Similar species are shown on the same page. There is a sprinkling of eggs, larvae and pupae. These are illustrated by a total of 1,500 colour paintings.
Guide to the Moths of the British Isles By Bernard Skinner,iIllustrated by David Wilson, Viking 1984 (1988 reprint) ISBN 0-670-80354-5.
Colour plates of 1,600 specimens and 57 groups of drawings as figures in the text. The plates show all species, races and "better known forms". The nomencclature is up to date. (Butterflies and Microlepidoptera are not included).
The 2009 edition, ISBN 978-8788757-90-3, has 51 colour plates:
British Moths and Butterflies A Photographic Guide by Chris Manley, A & C Black London ISBN 978-0-7136-8636-4 (About twice the size of pocket format).
A Kingfisher Guide. Butterflies of Britain and Europe by Alan Watson ISBN 0-86272-060-5
Collins "A Field Guide to Caterpillars of Butterflies and Moths in Britain and Europe" by D.J. Carter and B. Hargreaves ISBN 0-00-219080-X.
This book takes a unique approach: Its colour plates group caterpillars according to their food plants and also shows what the adult insects look like. (Other books show the adults in colour, maybe also with line drawings of caterpillars, or just show the caterpillars in colour).
Only 500 species are included of the 850 in Porter's comprehensive book
So, once you have some idea what species it is, if it is not one of those of very striking appearance, you may have to consult books with more species described or illustrated.
The Colour Identification Guide to Caterpillars of the British Isles by Jim Porter, Viking ISBN 0-670-87509-0
These books may be useful in other European faunas. Anyway, they are a joy to own:
Beetles of the British Isles, Series 1 The Superfamilies Caraboidea, Palpicornia, Staphylinoidea and Diversicornia 19 plates in colour, 20 in black and white. 300 pages, Frederick Warne & Co., Wayside and Woodland series, 1959.
Beetles of the British Isles, Series 2 The Superfamilies Clavicornia, Heteromera, Lamellicornia, Phytophaga & Rhycophora and including the Strepsiptera. 44 plates in colour, 43 in black and white. 300 pages, Frederick Warne & Co., Wayside and Woodland series, 1959.
Shire Natural History. Longhorn Beetles of the British Isles by Norman Hickin ISBN 0-85263-897-3
Blandford Colour Series. Beetles in Colour by Keif Lyneborg ISBN 0-7137-0827-1
Collins Field Guide Spiders of Britain & Northern Europe by Michael J Roberts ISBN 0-00-219985-5
The Country life guide to Spiders of Britain and Northern Europe by Dick Jones ISBN 0-600-35665-5
Roger Phillips: Grasses, Ferns, Mosses and Lichens of Great Britain and Ireland, Pan Books ISBN 0 330 25959 8 (Many are A4 size).
Collins Guide to the Grasses, Sedges, Rushes and Ferns of Britain and Northern Europe by Roger Fitter & Alastair Fitter
“Field Guide to Wild flowers of Southern Europe” by Paul Davies and Bob Gibbons, The Crowood Press 1993 ISBN 1 85223 659 0 Includes trees, grasses and sedges and covers “many of the plants (all orchids) of Spain, Portugal, southern France, Italy and Malta
"The Wild Flowers of Britain and Northern Europe" by Richard Fitter, Alastair Fitter and Marjorie Blamey, 1974 ISBN Paperback edition 0 00219069 09
"A Field Guide to the Wild Flowers of Britain and Europe" by Thomas Schauer, over 1600 species described, 1200 illustrated in colour. (Some Mediterranean species included). ISBN Paperback edition 0 00 219257 8
Field Guide to Orchids of Britain and Europe by Karl Peter Buttler and Consultant editor Paul Davies, The Crowood Press 1986, 2007 edition. ISBN 978-1-85223-591-8.
Every European species and subspecies is described and illustrated with whole plant and close-up colour photographs and line drawings of floral details. There are keys to species and descriptions and habitat details. Each page has a colour code for the genus.
The book is a pocket-size paperback.
The Illustrated Book of Trees and Shrubs edited by Eleanor Lawrence from a text by Vaclav Vetvicka. Octopus Books 1985, reprinted 1986. ISBN 0 7064 2044 6
Evergreen Trees and Shrubs by James Underwood Crockett and the Editors of Time-Life Books (one volume of the series The Time-Life Encyclopaedia of Gardening).1978. (No ISBN No). (There would also be a deciduous tree volume in the series).
Trees in Britain, Europe and North America by Roger Phillips. PAN Books 1978 ISBN 0 330 25480 4 (Now online)
The Country Living Book "Special Plants" by Jane Taylor, Quadrille Publishing ISBN 1-902757-46-7 (Cultivated plants)
Collins Complete Guide to British Mushrooms & Toadstools. A photographic guide to every common species by Paul Sterry & Barry Hughes ISBN 978-0-00-723224-6
Mini review here:
Authors of the above book recommend:
Collins field Guide. Mushrooms & Toadstools of Britain and Europe by Courtecuisse, Regis & Duhem, Bernard. HarperCollins, 1995 ISBN: 0002200252
It covers 3,500 species, every one which can be identified in the field. The geographical coverage includes the whole of Europe, the outer limits including western Russia and western Turkey, and the northern parts od Morocco, Algeria and Tunisia. The illustrations are coloured drawings.
It is the only book in my library which has ha detailed section on the "syndromes" of mushroom poisoning. It also has a very extensive macroscopic key to species. A good pocket guide.
The Great Encyclopedia of Mushrooms by Lamaison and Polese (no authors' names appear in or on my copy!) ISBN 3-8290-1728-6. Quarto ( I think) - slightly shorter and wider than A4.
Introduction to Fungi by John Webster 978-0521807395 (A4 size, the second edition somewhat smaller).
Mushrooms by Roger Phillips 978-0330442374 (now online)
This shows detached fruiting bodies photographed on a coloured background to best show off the mushrooms.
The Encyclopedia of Fungi of Britain and Europe by Michael Jordan. Published by David & Charles ISBN0 7153 0129 2. Mushrooms, often groups of them, are shown growing in their habitat, sometimes with detached fruiting bodies also in the frame to show additonal features. Photographs of 1,000 species are included. There are 3 pages on Slime Moulds and, a unique feature, a colour chart for the colours of mushrooms. The book predates the issue of commons names for most species. (This book is expensive but I obtained a very clean copy at a fraction of the price). Quarto ( I think) - slightly shorter and wider than A4.
Penguin Nature Guides. Fungi of Northern Europe1. Larger Fungi (Excluding Gill-Fungi) by Sven Nilsson & Olle Persson ISBN 0 14 063.005 8
Penguin Nature Guides. Fungi of Northern Europe 2. Gill Fungi by Sven Nilsson & Olle Persson ISBN 0 14 063.006 6
Kingfisher Guide to the Mushrooms & Toadstools of Britain and Europe by David Pegler ISBN 1-85697-156-2
Collins Guide Mushrooms and Toadstools of Britain and Europe by Stefan Buzacki ISBN 0-00-219978
It covers from mushrooms to fungal diseases of plants, 1,300 species altogether. Illustrations are coloured drawings with detailed descriptions. It has sections on substrates, environments and habitats. A good pocket guide.
Myxomycetes A Handbook of Slime Molds by Steven L Stephenson and Henry Stempen Timber Press ISBN 0-88192-493-3
Collins Complete Guide To Mediterreanean Wildlife. A photographic guide to every common species by Paul Sterry, 384 pages ISBN 978-0-00-220161-2.
It covers animals and plants of southern Spain and southern Portugal, Itally, Greece, the islands and parts of most other countries (not Egypt)surrounding the sea.
1,000 photographs illustrate flora and fauna of coastal regions and mountain foothills.
My images are a medium for sharing some of my experiences: they are not me.
Last edited by Harold Gough on Wed Sep 19, 2012 3:37 am; edited 33 times in total