Review Of "North American Owls: Biology And Natural History" By P. A. Johnsgard

Document Type

Book Review

Publication Date


Published In



Updated from the 1989 edition with the added coverage of owls of Mexico, this is another well-written and useful monograph on North American bird families by Johnsgard. Brief overviews of the evolution, ecology, physiology, behavior, and mythology of owls are followed by species accounts of North American owls. The species accounts are clear and nontechnical and much more detailed than a field guide with full-page range maps. Good monographs such as this one occupy a middle ground between ornithology textbooks, field guides, and complete series such as The Birds of North America (18v.; v. 1, CH, Oct'93) or Handbook of the Birds of the World (v. 1-2, CH, May'96; v. 3, CH, Jun'97; v. 4, CH, Jul'98; v. 5, CH, Apr'00; v. 6, CH, Oct'01; v. 7, CH, Dec'02), but they do not substitute for any of these and it would be unfortunate to forgo the purchase of a complete series for a patchwork of monographs. Bibliography of about 900 citations; index limited to species names; dichotomous keys to calls, genera, and species and morphology of the ear; 42 full-color plates. Accessible to lay readers, this would be a useful addition to any library collecting for patrons above the eighth-grade level. Summing Up: Highly recommended. All levels.


This work is freely available courtesy of Choice Reviews. The review has been reproduced in full in the abstract field.

This document is currently not available here.