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CNHG Raptors of California

CNHG Raptors of California

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Raptors—the charismatic group of birds that includes hawks, eagles, and falcons—evoke power, swiftness, and grace. Raptors, or birds of prey, gaze calmly about while at rest, exuding confidence and nobility, and, while soaring aloft, they are absolute icons of the California landscape. Featuring descriptions of every diurnal California raptor, this state-of-the-art, beautifully illustrated guide is the first to combine identification of these important birds with a comprehensive discussion of their natural history.

Raptors of California notes well-established field marks in addition to introducing several new pointers that help distinguish especially difficult species. More than a field guide, the book also includes information on raptor anatomy, foraging, reproduction, movement, where and how to observe raptors, human-raptor interactions, raptor conservation, endangered species, caring for injured hawks, falconry, and more. Of special interest is the inclusion of previously unpublished descriptions of raptor behavior and many fascinating anecdotes and vivid observations from the field that provide new insights into the lives of these captivating birds.



* Covers 27 species, with range maps for the 18 species regularly occurring in California

* 104 color figures include photographs and wash drawings illustrating habitats, anatomy, field marks, and behavior

* 12 full-page color plates show the various plumages of each species—including rarities—as well as their appearance in flight

* Highly readable and accessible, even when covering complicated topics such as flight and evolutionary adaptations
Raptors—the charismatic group of birds that includes hawks, eagles, and falcons—evoke power, swiftness, and grace. Raptors, or birds of prey, gaze calmly about while at rest, exuding confidence and nobility, and, while soaring aloft, they are absolute icons of the California landscape. Featuring descriptions of every diurnal California raptor, this state-of-the-art, beautifully illustrated guide is the first to combine identification of these important birds with a comprehensive discussion of their natural history.

Raptors of California notes well-established field marks in addition to introducing several new pointers that help distinguish especially difficult species. More than a field guide, the book also includes information on raptor anatomy, foraging, reproduction, movement, where and how to observe raptors, human-raptor interactions, raptor conservation, endangered species, caring for injured hawks, falconry, and more. Of special interest is the inclusion of previously unpublished descriptions of raptor behavior and many fascinating anecdotes and vivid observations from the field that provide new insights into the lives of these captivating birds.



* Covers 27 species, with range maps for the 18 species regularly occurring in California

* 104 color figures include photographs and wash drawings illustrating habitats, anatomy, field marks, and behavior

* 12 full-page color plates show the various plumages of each species—including rarities—as well as their appearance in flight

* Highly readable and accessible, even when covering complicated topics such as flight and evolutionary adaptations

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Published by: University of California Press on Dec 03, 2008
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial

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03/21/2013

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© by the Regents of the University of California.Not to be reproduced without publisher’s written permission.
 
INTRODUCTION
 
RAPTORS ARE AN
integral part ofthe California landscape.Notonly do they play major roles in various ecosystems and act as in-dicators ofthe ecological health ofthe state,but they are also im-portant aesthetic components ofour land;it is very difficult toimagine a typical California savanna ofstately oaks without aRed-tailed Hawk
(Buteo jamaicensis)
soaring above it in lazy cir-cles,nor would the jagged cliffs ofBig Sur have the same magicwithout the scream ofthe gulls or the arrow shape ofa PeregrineFalcon
(Falco peregrinus)
flashing across the crags.California surely is one ofthe finest hawk-viewing areas in theUnited States.Although Texas and Arizona boast more speciesbecause they attract a few more subtropical raptors,these arevery local;you can drive vast distances and see nary a hawk.InCalifornia,you can count on catching glimpses ofAmericanKestrels
(Falco sparverius)
and Red-tailed Hawks nearly every-where,in part because our generally mild climate provides for a year-round abundance and diversity offood for both raptors andprey.In addition,California has a greater variety ofhabitats andclimatic zones than any other state,which invite both specializedraptors and generalists.Because ofthe close proximity ofthesevaried regions to each other,many species can be found with rel-
2
INTRODUCTION
Fig. 1. California savanna of chiefly nonnative grasses and valley oaks
(Quercus lobata).

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