Nature and Outdoor Guides

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North American Hummingbirds: An Identification Guide

George C. West

Bronze Winner of the 2016 PubWest Book Design Award for Guide or Travel Book

Designed to help birders and banders identify, age, and sex all seventeen species of hummingbirds found in North America, this is the only identification guide devoted entirely to hummingbirds that includes up-close, easy-to-use illustrations. It also provides information on the eight species that have been reported but rarely seen in North America.

On first viewing hummingbirds are often a blur of fast-moving color. However, when they perch and hover they can be observed, and the size, shape, and color; the proportions of the body, bill, throat, and tail; the wing feather pattern; and the birds’ behavior are crucial to accurate identification. The author’s concise descriptions and illustrations pinpoint all these features in clear, jargon-free language. Anyone who loves hummingbirds will welcome the information he provides.


George C. West is a zoologist who is an expert on the physiology and ecology of birds. He is a professor emeritus of zoophysiology at the University of Alaska Fairbanks and the author of more than one hundred scientific papers, as well as the coauthor of Do Hummingbirds Hum? Fascinating Answers to Questions about Hummingbirds and other books. He lives in Green Valley, Arizona.


“Exquisitely illustrated and informative.”


Arizona Daily Star

“A valuable resource for anyone trying to keep tabs on visitors at a feeding station.”



“Identifying hummingbirds can be tricky: Sometimes the little speedballs just look like blurs of color. But zoologist George West makes it easier with his new guide, which provides detailed references and illustrations for all 17 species of North American hummers—plus information on eight rarities.”



“This guide is . . . filled with information, photos, and other illustrations. It should prove to be very handy, especially in locations where multiple hummingbird species are possible.”


The Birder’s Library

North American Hummingbirds is an attractive book with copious photographs and illustrations of the creatures that often appear to the uninitiated as tiny, colorful blurs. . . . Anyone interested in identifying hummingbirds will find this lovely book indispensable.”


American Reference Books Annual

“Illustrated with full color artwork or photographs on virtually every page, North American Hummingbirds: An Identification Guide is a gorgeous, user-friendly reference and resource.”


Midwest Book Review

4.5 x 7.25 in. 253 pages 389 color illustrations