🖊️ Edited by Josep del Hoyo, Andrew Elliott, David A. Christie
The volume begins with a Foreword by Murray Bruce, on the history of bird classification. The book covers the first 9 families of the order Passeriformes. The first three (broadbills, asities, pittas) are colourful forest birds whose distribution is Africa, south-east Asia, and in the case of the latter, also Oceania ; but the greater part of the volume deals with the species (623 in all) that occur in the Neotropic (ovenbirds, woodcreepers, typical antbirds, ground-antbirds, gnateaters and tapaculos). Mostly these are forest and jungle birds, although the ovenbirds family, the most numerous of the volume (236 species) occurs in a great variety of environments, from the heights of the Andes to the Amazon forest and desert zones. The volume is specially useful for those interested in tropical birds, who will find an ample store of information ranging from the complexity and diversity of the nests of ovenbirds, to the morphological variation of the bills of woodcreepers, the behaviour of antbirds, many of which pursue army ant swarms, and the origin of the name ‘tapaculos’.
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