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A Guide to the Large Mammals of Thailand by John W. K. Parr
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A Guide to the Large Mammals of Thailand by John Parr is an excellent field guide to this group of animals; one which is small enough to be carried in a large pocket. The publication concentrates on the more identifiable mammals that one is likely to see, excluding bats, small rodents and shrews, but including squirrels, treeshrews and civets, meaning that the plates are not overcrowded and the book can easily be used in the field to identify mammals.

The Large Mammals of Thailand comprises a 25 page introduction, 39 colour plates, 65 pages of species accounts and 12 pages of mammal tracks.

The introduction to this book is concise and informative, containing notes on habitats, consevation issues and protected areas important for large mammals, making for interesting reading before trips to the field. The colour plates are excellently illustrated and uncluttered, something which cannot be said for many bird field guides, and the species accounts contain useful identification information and range maps. This book really does make identifying mammals as easy as it can.

A Guide to the Large Mammals of Thailand is one of the simplest, most straight-forward and useable field guides that I have ever owned and highly recommended for birders who are also interested in identifying mammals; this publication is particularly enlightening when it comes to putting a name on all the squirrels that one sees.

It is difficult to critisize this excellent book, but one thing that springs to mind is that more use could have been put to the pages that list common and scientific names opposite the plates; there is quite enough room for a little text and/or range maps.

One other possible issue with this book is that I notice that it uses slightly different taxonomy to some other books, particularly in regard to some splits of monkeys and civets. Not being intimately familiar with this taxonomy, I am unable to say if the taxonomy used in this book is outdated or better-informed than other publications.

These minor faults aside, carrying a copy of this book when out birding will most certainly allow for quick identification of the mammals that are encountered.

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