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Massachusetts

This page lists books about birds and birdwatching in the US state of Massachusetts.

The books are arranged by publication date with the most recent at the top of the page.


USA

For bird books that cover all, or a large part of, the USA see the following page:

USA bird books

 

Field Guide to Birds of Massachusetts

Wayne R. Petersen

Photographs: Brian E Small

American Birding Association

Scott & Nix Inc

2017

"Written by expert birder Wayne R. Petersen and filled with crisp, gorgeous color photography by Brian E. Small, the American Birding Association Field Guide to Birds of Massachusetts is the perfect companion for anyone learning more about the natural history and diversity of the commonwealth's birds and when and where to see them."

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Birds of New England

Todd Telander

Falcon Pocket Guide

Falcon Press

2014

A field guide to 300 of the most common and sought-after bird species in the region.

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Northeastern Birds: Backyard Guide

Bill Thompson III

Cool Springs Press

2013

"Inside, you'll find profiles of the 55 most common birds in the Northeast, complete with large color photos, gender-specific physical descriptions, nesting and feeding information, bird call particulars, and interesting stories about each species. Thompson also introduces the reader to the basics of bird watching: essential gear, bird-friendly food and plantings, housing tips, and observational techniques. This guide covers New York, Rhode Island, Connecticut, Massachusetts, Vermont, New Hampshire, and Maine."

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Field Guide to Nature of New England

Kenn Kaufman and Kimberly Kaufman

Houghton Mifflin Harcourt

2012

"Whether you're walking in the woods or along the beach, camping, hiking, canoeing, or just enjoying your own backyard, Kaufman Field Guide to Nature of New England will help identify all your nature discoveries. With authoritative and broad coverage, using nontechnical and lively language and more than 2000 color photographs, Kaufman Field Guide to Nature of New England is an essential reference for nature lovers living in or visiting New England."

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An Illustrated Guide to the Common Birds of Cape Cod

Peter Trull

Illustrations: Catherine E. Clark

Schiffer

2011

"Over 140 beautifully rendered color illustrations of common Cape Cod birds with species accounts that include locations where they may be found by birders. The informative text provides helpful advice on the best bird watching techniques and six field trips focusing on different environments and the species that populate them. These field trip locations include Woodland in Spring and Summer, Waterfowl of Freshwater Lakes and Ponds, Common Birds of the Salt Marsh, Shorebirds of the Tidal Flats in Late Summer, Fall and Winter Migrants on Salt Water, and Oceanic Birds. While addressing the needs of beginning bird watchers, adults and children alike, there is useful information on locations and logistics that any bird lover may use. This simple-to-use field guide is an invaluable resource for birding on Cape Cod."

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The Wildlife of New England: A Viewer's Guide

John S. Burk

University Press of New England

2011

"This guide to discovering and viewing the wildlife of New England covers the states of Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Massachusetts, Rhode Island and Connecticut. It provides information on more than 80 wildlife-viewing areas that represent the diversity of New England's natural landscape. Organized by state, the entries for each area detail the natural habitats and their unique features, identify characteristic species to watch for and when to see them, and list recommended trails, auto roads, and driving directions. In addition, the author offers informative introductions to 60 of the region's iconic animals organized by their natural habitats."

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Birding Nantucket

Andrews & Blackshaw

BookSurge Publishing

2010

"This is the seventh edition of a 30-year collaboration between these two Nantucket bird icons. Bird comings and goings have changed over the years. Our planet is a bit warmer and Nantucket is becoming more gentrified on one hand and more forested on the other. If you are new to the island, the various birding trips described here will give you a chance to get out and enjoy many of the island's unique birds. Old-timers find the bar-charts in the back an excellent way to know when to expect a particular bird. This book is a must for any birder. Whether in the bicycle basket or the door pocket of your car, you'll want to have it near."

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Contributions to the History of North American Ornithology,
Volume III

Editor: William E. Davis Jr and Jerome A. Jackson

Nuttall Ornithological Club Memoirs 17

2010

"This volume contains chapters on the first 60 years of the Massachusetts Audubon Society; ornithology at the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County, Tall Timbers Research Station, and Archbold Biological Station; ornithology in Delaware and the Delaware Museum of Natural History; and ornithology at Manomet Bird Observatory. It concludes with biographical chapters on John Richardson and early Saskatchewan bird banders."

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The Paradise of All These Parts: A Natural History of Boston

John Hanson Mitchell

Beacon Press

2008

"How much does the current landscape of Boston, Massachusetts, resemble the place that Captain John Smith referred to in 1614 as "the Paradise of all these parts"? John Hanson Mitchell explores a variety of habitats as he ranges outward from the core of the peninsula where the Puritans first settled to the ancient rim of the Boston Basin, within which the modern city now lies. Endlessly readable and full of personality, The Paradise of All These Parts offers Boston visitors and residents alike a whole new perspective on one of America's oldest cities."

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The Naturalist's Guide to the Atlantic Seashore: Beach Ecology from the Gulf of Maine to Cape Hatteras

Scott W. Shurnway

Falcon Press

2008

"From the North Carolina's Outer Banks to Maine's rocky coast, this comprehensive guidebook covers the ecology, wildlife, plants and ocean creatures in full-colour photographs and vivid detail. No other book includes all of the plants, animals, and terrain along this stretch of coastline, making this a must-have for anyone who lives or recreates near the Atlantic. The diverse habitats of the seashore, from the Rocky Shores to Sandy Beaches, Estuaries, Tidal Flats, Salt Marshes, Seagrass Meadows, and the Open Ocean are explored in detail in this user-friendly guide and natural history. The easy-to-use layout, comprehensive index, water-resistant cover and guaranteed binding make this a beautiful volume of natural history and biodiversity."

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Vineyard Birds II

Susan B. Whiting and Barbara B. Pesch

Vineyard Stories

2007

"Vineyard Birds II, authored by local birding experts Susan B. Whiting ("Soo") and Barbara B. Pesch (2007), provides an annotated checklist of the birds of Martha's Vineyard Island, in Massachusetts, USA, complete with beautiful hand drawn illustrations and photos. Local and visiting birders will find this book an invaluable guide as it focuses exclusively on the birds of Martha's Vineyard and identifies specific island locations where particular species are likely to be observed."

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A Natural History of Bostonís North Shore

Kristina Lindborg

University Press of New England

2007

"This charming guide to the North Shore of Massachusetts will delight and inform tourists and longtime residents and is an introduction to the natural history of Essex Country, the regionís unique geological history, and the formation of such notable sites as the Great Marsh, Crane Beach, and Plum Island's renowned bird sanctuary. In addition, readers will learn about the Paleolithic inhabitants of Bull Brook and how a modern fisherman caught a mastodon tooth in his net. Echoing the changing rhythms of the natural world, this book emphasizes the unique seasonal activities of various mammals, birds, fish, and plants, highlighting the intricately balanced and varied ecology of the region. Generously illustrated with the author's beautiful pen, pencil, and ink-washed drawings, this book will delight anyone interest in an accessible nature guide to the North Shore."

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The Birds of Cape Cod and the Islands

Roger S. Everett

Schiffer

2006

"As Priscilla Bailey notes in her Preface, this new book brings together aspects of field guide, travelogue, and photo-essay. Nearly 300 varieties of birds, both native and migratory, and some rare visitors from far-off lands, were photographed in their Cape and Islands habitats. The images reveal beauty, both in the birds themselves and the artistic eye of the photographer. For convenience, The Birds of Cape Cod and the Islands is divided into various habitat settings: the yard, marshes and ponds, the seashore, fields, and forests. In addition one chapter documents the birds that are rarely seen on the Cape & Islands. Also, maps show the best sites for viewing the birds in nature."

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Birds of Cape Cod and the Islands In Postcards

Roger S. Everett

Schiffer

2006

"From a vast collection of images of birds captured by noted bird photographer Roger S. Everett, forty Cape & Island birds are gathered in this book as beautiful color postcards. Perforated, they can be detached and sent to friends (at 40 cents apiece they are a good bargain), framed and hung on your wall, or kept intact as a souvenir of your summer vacation. This is also the perfect gift for the bird enthusiast or collector of wildlife photography."

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The Nature of Cape Cod

Beth Schwarzman

University Press of New England

2006

"A well-known Cape naturalist, geologist, and public educator has written the first comprehensive natural history of the area, describing life and natural processes in its varied environments, from ocean beach to cranberry bog to deep woods. The Nature of Cape Cod provides maps and narrative descriptions of 50 sites that invite exploration; it will take the reader to hidden gems and reveal new aspects of favorite places."

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Boston Birds: An Introduction to Familiar Species

Waterford Press

2006

A folding guide that highlights the most commonly found birds in Boston.

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Birding Cape Cod

Cape Cod Bird Club & Massachusetts Audubon Society

2005

"A field guide to one of the world's premier birding locations, this volume makes it easy to take this sublime pastime to the next level. With a break down of the Cape into regions, towns, and favourite birding areas, the guide includes a section on pelagic birding, detailed maps that indicate items of interest, birding hot spots, and even parking locations. A section on the descriptions of Cape Cod speciality species is also included as are explanations of when to bird, what to look for, and in which habitats to find birds. A useful checklist of the birds of the Cape, helpful cross references, and a complete index for quick reference round out this perfect field guide for both visitors to and residents of Cape Cod."

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Birds of New England

Wayne Petersen and Roger Burrows

Lone Pine Publishing

2004

"Full of interesting facts and useful information, "Birds of New England" is a field guide geared to both the casual backyard observer and the experienced naturalist. The book features 320 of New England's most abundant or notable bird species, each one illustrated in color. You'll also find a Quick Reference Guide, organized into color-coded family groupings, as well as a map of the best birding sites and descriptions of a number of New England's most notable viewing locations. The book includes a glossary of terms, birder's checklist and separate indexes for scientific and common names. There is also a color-coded guide to the bird groups on the back cover."

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Massachusetts Breeding Bird Atlas

Editor: Wayne R. Petersen and W. Roger Meservey

University of Massachusetts Press / Massachusetts Audubon Society

2003

"In 1974, the Massachusetts Audubon Society and the Massachusetts Division of Fisheries and Wildlife launched a five-year survey to map the distribution of all the birds that breed in the Commonwealth - the first such comprehensive effort in North America. Nearly 600 volunteers spent countless hours in the field collecting data. This landmark volume presents the results of their efforts. The book includes distribution maps showing possible, probable, and confirmed breeding areas for 198 Massachusetts nesting species on a grid of 989 tensquare-mile blocks. Opposite each species map is a summary account giving historical perspective, relative abundance, habitat, seasonal schedule, nest, egg, and song descriptions, clutch size, egg dates, number of broods, and other pertinent details. Each species account is illustrated with a scrupulously accurate, watercolor portrait by award-winning nature artists John Sill and Barry Van Dusen. The book also includes a set of six transparent overlay maps in an attached pocket that allow the reader to correlate key environmental factors with the distribution of nesting species."

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Birding Western Massachusetts

Robert Tougias

New England Cartographics

2003

Subtitled "A Habitat Guide to 26 Great Birding Sites from the Berkshires to the Quibbin."

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Bird Finding Guide to Western Massachusetts

Jan Ortiz, David Spector, Pete Westover, Mary Alice Wilson

University of Massachusetts

2002

"An essential resource for locating birds from the marshes of western Worcester County to the peaks of the Berkshires. Fifty-two local birders collaborated to produce this practical guide that features stunning original illustrations by Andrew Magee and bar charts showing seasonal abundance. The guide's 83 site accounts and 85 maps cover the other Massachusetts, the less-populated region bounded by New York, Connecticut, New Hampshire and Vermont. In addition to well-known birding locations, dozens of lesser known but equaly productive and beautiful sites are covered. Whether you are a beginning birder or an expert, whether you choose casual walks, strenuous hikes, birding from your car, or backwater canoeing, this book takes you from city to hilltown as you sample the region's diverse habitats and rich bird life. A list of conservation resources provides contacts for learning about and helping to preserve the natural heritage of Western Massachusetts."

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Birds of New England

Fred J. Alsop

Smithsonian Handbook

DK Publishing

2002

"The most comprehensive series of field guides to North American birds ever. Smithsonian Handbooks are the most comprehensive field guides to North American birds on the market. Created in association with the Smithsonian Institution, these amazing guides are an absolute staple for any birder or amateur ornithologist. Each local species receives its own profile, along with descriptions of habitats and annotated photographs that highlight specific characteristics and other points of interest."

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Massachusetts Birds: An Introduction to Familiar Species

Waterford Press

2001

"Massachusetts Birds is the perfect pocket-sized folding guide for the bird lover and nature enthusiast. Rich illustrations highlight the most commonly found birds in Massachusetts. Laminated for durability these handy guides are a great resource of portable knowledge."

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New England Birds: An Introduction to Familiar Species

Waterford Press

2001

"New England Birds is a portable reference guide featuring over 100 species of birds found in Maine, Vermont, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Rhode Island and Connecticut. This richly illustrated and detailed guide is printed on durable material and folds for convenience."

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Birds of Massachusetts: Field Guide

Stan Tekiela

Adventure Publications

2000

"Learn about and identify birds using Stan Tekiela's state-by-state field guides. The full-page, color photos are incomparable and include insets of winter plumage, color morphs and more. Plus, with the easy-to-use format, you don't need to know a bird's name or classification in order to easily find it in the book. Using this field guide is a real pleasure. It's a great way for anyone to learn about the birds in your state."

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Bird News: Vagrants and Visitors on a Peculiar Island

E. Vernon Laux

Da Capo Press / Four Walls Eight Windows

1999

"With the enthusiasm of the devotee, columnist E. Vernon Laux documents a year in the life of the Martha's Vineyard bird population and provides a bird's-eye view of the seasons on New England's most celebrated island. He reports on the characters that watch and the creatures that are watched in the skies and waters, beaches and mudflats, fields and forests of the Vineyard. Laux also lovingly describes his own discovery: the chickmouse, a hybrid of two common species. In his sometimes dramatic, sometimes serene corner of the world, Laux explores complex relationships through acute observation and enthusiastic attention."

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Birds of Boston

Chris C. Fisher and Andy Bezener

Lone Pine Publishing

1998

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Field Guide to New England

Peter Alden, Brian Cassie

National Audubon Society

Taylor Trade Publishing

1998

"Filled with concise descriptions and stunning photographs, the National Audubon Society Field Guide to New England belongs in the home of every New England resident and in the suitcase or backpack of every visitor. This compact volume contains: an easy-to-use field guide for identifying 1,000 of the region's wildflowers, trees, mushrooms, mosses, fishes, amphibians, reptiles, birds, butterflies, mammals, and much more; a complete overview of New England's natural history, covering geology, wildlife habitats, ecology, fossils, rocks and minerals, clouds and weather patterns and night sky; and an extensive sampling of the area's best parks, preserves, beaches, forests, islands, and wildlife sanctuaries, with detailed descriptions and visitor information for 50 sites and notes on dozens of others."

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The Smithsonian Guides to Natural America: Southern New England: Massachusetts, Connecticut, Rhode Island

Robert Finch

Random House

1996

"A photographic tour of the natural wonders and seasonal recreational opportunities of southern New England encompasses more than two hundred sites of ecological and geographical significance in Massachusetts, Connecticut, and Rhode Island."

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A Birder's Guide to Eastern Massachusetts

American Birding Association

1994

A guide to birdwatching sites.

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Birds of Massachusetts

Richard R. Veit and Wayne R. Petersen

Illustrations: Barry W. Van Dusen Foreword:Roger Tory Petersen Natural History of New England Series

Massachusetts Audubon Society

1993

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A Guide to the Common Birds of Cape Cod

Peter Trull

Cape Cod Museum of Natural History

1992

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The Bird of Light

John Hay

W W Norton & Co

1991

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Bird Finding in New England

Richard K. Walton

David R Godine

1988

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Birds of the Sudbury River Valley: An Historical Perspective

Richard K. Walton

Massachusetts Audubon Society

1984

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The Birds of Nantucket

Ludlow Griscom and Edith V. Folger

New England Bird Studies I

Harvard University Press

1948

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The Birds Of The Connecticut Valley In Massachusetts

Aaron Clark Bagg and Samuel Atkins Eliot Jr

Frontispiece: L.A. Fuertes

Illustrations: R.T. Peterson, E.O. Damon and others

The Hampshire Bookshop

1937

From the preface:

"Every wild bird that certainly occurs or has occurred in our area, even though only once or long ago recorded, is in the Table of Contents and the Annotated List given a serial number. There are 301 of these, but 2 (the Heath Hen and Passenger Pigeon) have been exterminated, 5 were exotic game birds introduced only to die out, the last native Wild Turkey was killed in 1851 and several attempted re-introductions have failed, and at least 14 others (see the Statistical Summary at the end of the book) are scarcely more likely to be seen again; so that the active list numbers not over 280. By no means all of these are substantiated by specimens; they are numbered along with those thus validated by reason either of (l) first-hand study of the bird, (2) trust in the experience and ability of the person reporting it, or (3) the relative unmistakability of the bird. Sight-records which we have hesitated to endorse (and sometimes, of course, the line has been very difficult to draw) add about forty unnumbered species or subspecies to the List, ranging from such almost certainties as the Tufted Tit or Bewick's Wren to such an extremely unlikely record (given only because already published in Forbush's Birds of Massachusetts and Other New England Slates), as that of the Golden-cheeked Warbler."
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Birds Of Massachusetts And Other New England States

Part I: Water Birds, Marsh Birds And Shore Birds

Edward Howe Forbush

Illustrated with colored plates from drawings by Louis Agassiz Fuertes and figures and cuts from drawings and photographs by the author and others

Massachusetts Department of Agriculture

1929

From the introduction:

When the task of preparing a work on the birds of Massachusetts was undertaken, the fact became apparent at once that practically all the birds of New England must be included. There are very few species recorded in New England which have not been taken in Massachusetts and these few are mere accidental visitors. A glance at the map of New England shows that Massachusetts lies directly across the region and is contiguous to every other state except Maine, the southwestern boundary of which is only about fifteen miles from the northeastern border of Massachusetts. Migratory birds passing through New England in their northward and southward flights naturally go through or over Massachusetts and many of them remain for a time within her borders. The long outreaching arm of Cape Cod extends farther out to sea than any other of the outlying coasts of these states. Many water-birds cross it or land upon it, and seabirds from far- away islands and waters are likely to be blown there by hurricanes. Many shore-birds, which in their autumnal migrations reach South America largely by sea, are deflected and driven on the Massachusetts coast by such storms.
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Birds Of Massachusetts And Other New England States

Part II: Land Birds From Bob-Whites To Grackles

Edward Howe Forbush

Illustrated with colored plates from drawings by Louis Agassiz Fuertes and figures and cuts from drawings and photographs

Massachusetts Department of Agriculture

1929

Opening lines on gallinaceous birds:

This is an order of ground-dwelling, scratching game birds. The head is small compared with the heavy body. The bill is stout and obtuse; the wings short, arched, rounded and strong ; the tarsi generally broadly reticulated or feathered; in most cases the front toes are slightly webbed or connected at base; the hind toe is elevated; the claws are short and blunt. Members of this order generally are polygamous, though some are not. They nest on the ground, produce numerous eggs, and the young are able to run about soon after they are hatched. Members of this order are found in every continent, but only one suborder, Phasiani, is represented by birds indigenous to the United States. Economic Status. The birds of this order are of great economic consequence. From among its representatives man has selected the most important and productive of his domesticated fowls. As poultry, birds of this order the world over annually produce food products worth many millions of dollars. Some furnish valuable ornamental feathers. Members of the order rank among the most important of game birds. Bob-whites, quails, partridges, grouse, pheasants and wild turkeys are hunted annually by millions of sportsmen. The aggregate sum expended annually for guns, ammunition, outfits, dogs, guides, gamekeepers, etc. is enormous. The presence of these game birds also adds to the value of the land. Large sums are expended for shooting rights and privileges, and the value of the flesh of the birds killed as food is surprising when computed. Some of the species are exceedingly useful also as destroyers of injurious insects.
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Birds Of Massachusetts And Other New England States

Part III: Land Birds From Sparrows To Thrushes

Edward Howe Forbush

Illustrated with colored plates from drawings by Louis Agassiz Fuertes and Allan Brooks and figures and cuts from drawings and photographs

Biographical sketch of Edward Howe Forbush by John Richard May

Massachusetts Department of Agriculture

1929

From the preface:

It is with a feeling of deep pride and satisfaction that we witness the completion of the three volumes of "The Birds of Massachusetts and Other New England States" but this satisfaction is tempered by our keen sense of loss in the passing of their gifted author, Edward Howe Forbush. Mr. Forbush first became associated with the State Board of Agriculture, as it was then called, in 1893. The value of his studies of economic ornithology was quickly recognized and his work increased in importance during his association of thirty-five years with this department. He accomplished a vast amount of educational work through the medium of his lectures and publications on the relation of birds to mankind. Coincident with his advance as an economic ornithologist was his interest in and work for conservation. He was a pioneer in this field and much of our progressive legislation of to-day is due to his far-sighted policy in urging greater protection for our wild life and to his efforts in stimulating public opinion in this direction. The culmination of his lifetime of study of birds is found in the three volumes of "The Birds of Massachusetts and Other New England States." At the time of his retirement as Director of the Division of Ornithology, a position which he had held since the organization of the present Department of Agriculture, Mr. Forbush was busily engaged in pre- paring the manuscript for the final volume of this great work. Ten months later, the manuscript almost completed, he laid down his pen for the last time.
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Supplement to The Birds of Essex County Massachusetts

Charles Wendell Townsend

Nuttall Ornithological Club Memoirs 5

1920

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A History Of The Game Birds, Wild-Fowl And Shore Birds Of Massachusetts And Adjacent States

Edward Howe Forbrush

Drawings: W.I. Beecroft, Edward Howe Forbrush

Frontispiece: Louis Agassiz Fuertes

Photographs Herbert K. Job and others

Massachusetts State Board For Agriculture

1912

From the preface:

This volume is intended to fill a place heretofore unfilled, in at least two respects, by any American work. The former abundance and later decrease of the migratory game birds of eastern North America have been studied and narrated at length for the first time, and the histories of the food species of New England which have been exterminated since the settlement of the country have been brought together. This has been done with a purpose. Whenever legislation for the protection of shore birds or wild-fowl has been attempted in the Maritime States of the Atlantic seaboard, certain interested individuals have come forward to oppose it, with the plea that these birds are not decreasing in numbers, but, instead, are increasing, and that they need no further protection. Some admit that certain species are decreasing, but argue that shooting is not responsible for this condition. Similar statements are made in sup- port of proposed legislation for the repeal of existing protective laws. The object of the investigation on which this volume is based was to secure information from historical and ornithological works, and from ornithologists, sportsmen and gunners, regarding the increase or decrease of the birds which are hunted for food or sport.
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Useful Birds And Their Protection

Containing Brief Descriptions Of The More Common And Useful Species Of Massachusetts, With Accounts Of Their Food Habits, And A Chapter On The Means Of Attracting And Protecting Birds

Edward Howe Forbush

Colour frontispiece: Louis Agassiz Fuertes

Many other illustrations and photographs

Massachusetts Department of Agriculture

1929

From the preface:

In preparing and submitting this report the fact has been kept in mind that the material prosperity of the state and nation depends very largely on agricultural pursuits. An attempt has been made, therefore, to make the volume serviceable to both agriculturist and horticulturist. The author of this report believes, with Townend Glover, that an acquaintance with the useful birds of the farm is as important to the farmer as is a knowledge of the insect pests which attack his crops. Those who open this volume expecting to find within its covers a guide to the birds, a manual for the collector, or a systematic account of the birds of Massachusetts, will be disappointed, for its scope is chiefly economic. The plan of the report as outlined before the legislative committees has been followed to the letter. In undertaking the work, the author has attempted to counteract in some measure the effects of some phases of modern civilization and intensive farming which operate to destroy or drive out the birds; and it is hoped that the book will be of some service as a source of useful information for the bird protectionist. As no report prepared with such a purpose can exert much influence unless widely read, it has been written in a popular style, with little scientific verbiage.
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The Birds of the Cambridge Region of Massachusetts

William Brewster

Nuttall Ornithological Club Memoirs 4

1906

From the preface:

"The present Memoir was undertaken upwards of ten years ago at the request of the Nuttall Ornithological Club. For reasons which need not be mentioned here, its progress has been vexatiously slow, and - what is still more unfortunate - its completion at the present time has been made possible only by the sacrifice of certain historical features contemplated in its original plan. Nevertheless, it is hoped that the paper will prove of use to the members of the Club, as well as to other persons especially interested in the ornithology of the Cambridge Region. No attempt has been made to give full life histories of the birds. On the contrary, I have abstained from saying anything about their habits, songs, etc., save in cases where some mention of these and kindred matters has seemed essential to a clearer understanding of the reasons governing the local occurrence or distribution of certain of the species, or desirable for the purpose of rendering commonplace or otherwise tedious details more attractive. What I have had chiefly in mind has been to state as definitely as possible the times and seasons when each species has been noted, the numbers in which it has occurred, at long past as well as in very recent times, and the precise character and, in some instances also, situation of its favorite local haunts."
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The Birds of Essex County, Massachusetts

Charles Wendell Townsend

Nuttall Ornithological Club Memoirs 3

1905

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The Warblers Of New England

C.J. Maynard

1905

Published in 6 parts between 1901 and 1904

From the prospectus:

"This work contains descriptions of ail of the species of American Warblers which are found in New England. The book is illustrated with twelve hand-colored plates on which are figured a male and female of each species. THIE TEXT. The Family characters are first given, both external and internal, followed by a comparison with allied families. Generic characters are then defined in a clear, concise manner, and descriptions of species follow. The size is first given, then the characteristic markings, the time of migration and breeding range. This portion of the text is in large type. Following this, in smaller type, is a detailed description of the adult male and female, then of the young, and when known, of the nestling. Dimensions are next given; then comparisons with allied species, a feature particularly valuable to those who are comparatively unfamiliar with birds. Careful descriptions of the nests and eggs are given. The text on habits is in large type. This is a general account of the species, a more detailed account of the song, migration, and breeding range follows. ILLUSTRATIONS. One of the advantages of this book are the illustrations; many of the characters mentioned are explained by wood cuts, engraved by the author. PLATES. There are twelve plates, on each of which are given life-sized heads of both sexes of all of our warblers. These plates are engraved and hand-colored by the author."
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A Guide To The Birds Of New England And Eastern New York

Containing A Key For Each Season And Short Descriptions Of Over Two Hundred And Fifty Species, With Particular Reference To Their Appearance In The Field

Ralph Hoffman

Four full page plates by Louis Agassiz Fuertes and nearly one hundred cuts in the text

Houghton Mifflin & Co

1904

From the introduction:

There is something infectious in the enthusiasm of a student of birds. To hear him talk about the excitement of seeing a new bird, to read his account of it, or, best of all, to go afield with him on a May morning, is often enough to awaken a new interest, which enriches life to a surprising degree. The study of birds presents plenty of difficulties, which add fuel to the flame of real enthusiasm; there are sloughs of despond beyond which the faint-hearted never get. A guide who knows the way, its pitfalls and short cuts, is always welcome, and almost necessary in these days when our only weapon is the opera-glass. In spite of the fact that many excellent books are now available, the author offers another, both in the belief that there can never be too many good guides, and in the hope that this book has been especially adapted to the growing class of beginners in bird study. The book is the result of experience with many field-classes. Every effort has been made to emphasize the aspect of birds as seen out of doors, to describe their general or most prominent colors rather than any mark difficult to see on the living bird, and to call attention to their characteristic habits and haunts, and thus to enable the conscientious student to answer, with as much certainty as possible, the question, "What is the bird that I have seen?" The keys and the illustrations have been prepared with this end in view. There has been no attempt to give a complete description of the plumage, as it would look if the bird were held in the hand, nor does the book contain anything like full biographies of each species. Minute descriptions of the plumage and full accounts of the lives of the birds are to be found in many excellent books, some one of which may well be used to supplement this Guide. Notes and songs have been carefully described, and as far as possible expressed in English syllables. The author is well aware that another listener might express the same sounds by very different syllables; he has not attempted to convey to any one unfamiliar with the song anything more than an idea of its length and accent, and perhaps a suggestion of the quality of its tone. It is hoped, however, that the songs as transcribed will be useful in identifying doubtful species, that any one comparing the transcripts in the book with his own field-notes, or, better still, with the songs themselves, will recognize their likeness to that of one species and their unlikeness to that of another.
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The Birds Of Massachusetts

Reginald Heber Howe and Glover Morrill Allen

Published by subscription

1901

From the introduction:

"In the present work the authors have tried to bring together into convenient and permanent form all the material published on Massachusetts birds up to the date of the publication of this work ; as well as to add as much original matter as possible, both generously supplied from outside sources, and from our personal observations. Since about 1833 Massachusetts has been a centre of ornithological work, and the literature on Massachusetts birds probably exceeds the ornithological literature of almost any other state in the Union. The authors therefore ask the indulgence of their readers, as their task has been a very difficult one, and omissions, as well as errors may have crept in inadvertently."
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Handbook Of The Sparrows, Finches, etc., Of New England

C.J. Maynard

1896

From the introduction:

"My reason for writing a book upon birds with such a limited scope as the present, is because 1 am sure, from a somewhat extended experience, that it is better for those beginning the study of ornithology to first become thoroughly acquainted w4th some one group of birds, than to acquire a smattering knowledge of many. I have therefore selected the largest and in some ways the most important family of our New England birds, partly, because it is the most extended, but more particularly, because there is no season of the year, when some members of it are not to be found with us. In my walks in the fields and woods with my many pupils, I have found that some experience great difficulty m learning to distinguish birds, either by sight or by hearing their songs. This difficulty, it appears to me, is really due to the fact that the observer is trying to grasp an entirely new, and too vast a subject without a sufficient training of eye and ear. This being undoubtedly the case with so many, it appears best to begin with a group of birds, most of which are of a sufficient size to be readily seen and which not only have prominent, characteristic markings, but which also have songs which are readily distinguishable."
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Notes On The Birds Of Hull, Massachusetts

Everett W. Ricker

C.J. Maynard

1896

From the introduction:

"This list, for it is but little more than a list, I have made up of birds that have either been seen by myself or by my friend Mr. B. and his son, both of whom are well acquainted with our birds, while a very few have been reported to me by gunners. I have however, only given those in this list that I feel quite sure occur, as I know that it is very easy to make mistakes and the temptations are strong to make as large a list as possible. My chances for observing birds have been rather limited, as I have had only some afternoons and Sundays, during the summer months, thus I have no doubt overlooked some species. Very few species raise their young here, and those nests which I have found, were mostly those of birds which breed on the ground, or occasionally in low bushes. Migrating species make a very brief stay, as, on account of the comparatively barren nature of the soil and scarcity of trees, there is but little to attract them here."
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The Birds Of The Connecticut Valley In Massachusetts

Wm. W. Colburn and Robert O. Morris

1891

From the preface:

"The following list contains the names of the birds of the Connecticut Valley in Massachusetts, so far as they are known to the authors, either by personal observation or from consulting the works of the ornithologists who have described the birds of New England. The works of Allen, of Baird, Brewer and Ridgway, of Coues, of Minot, of Samuels and of Stearns have been freely used. We have also availed ourselves of the experience of such collectors as E. O. Damon of Northampton, Bradley Horsford and O. B. Deane of Springfield. The nomenclature is that adopted by the American Ornithologists Union, and the numbers attached to the names in this list correspond to the numbers in the Check-list of North American Birds, published by the Union in 1889. Mr. Morris has had the supervision of that part of the list which contains the birds of prey and the waterbirds, and Mr. Colburn has had charge of the remainder of the list. We do not claim that the list is perfect. Further observation will doubtless necessitate changes in the direction of addition, if not of elimination."
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Reports On The Fishes, Reptiles And Birds Of Massachusetts

Introduction: George B. Emerson

Ichthyology and Herpetology: D. Humphreys Storer

Ornithology: William B.O. Peabody

Published Agreeably To An Order Of The Legislature, By The Commissioners On The Zoological And Botanical Survey Of The State

Dutton and Wentworth, State Printers

1839

From the opening lines of the report on birds:

"One object proposed is, to enumerate the birds of Massachusetts; another, to give what information we possess respecting their habits, particularly such as cultivators are interested to know. As Nuttall's valuable Manual is accessible to most readers, I have thought it better to refer to him for descriptions of the appearance of our birds, than to swell this report by repeating them. For the same reason, I shall follow his arrangement, subjoining to my account of each bird all I can learn respecting its services and depredations; that the husbandman and horticulturist may determine which it is his interest to protect, and which he has a right to destroy; or rather, whether it is not the part of wisdom to encourage and protect them all. With respect to the first of these objects, it would be easy to give the names of those which remain with us throughout the year, or of those which come to us in their regular annual migrations. But beside these, there are some which make their appearance at uncertain inter- vals, and it is not always easy to determine whether they should or should not be numbered with our birds. There are others also, which have been found apparently wandering from their usual ways, but which, having come to us once or twice, may do so again. The proper course seemed to be, to give the names of all which have ever been seen here, leaving it to future observation to determine whether our State is their resting-place or their home."
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Last updated January 2014