Birds of the Lahontan Valley: A Guide to Nevada's Wetland Oasis

Deep in the arid vastness of the harsh Great Basin desert, in one of the warmest and driest basins in northern Nevada, lies a wetland oasis that is home to more than 290 species of resident and migratory birds. The Lahontan Valley wetlands, including Stillwater Marsh and Carson Lake, contain the remnants of a vast Pleistocene lake that once covered much of western and northern Nevada. Today, having shrunk to fewer than 100,000 acres and precariously vulnerable to the vagaries of the Great Basin's scanty rainfall and to competing demands for water from neighboring agriculturists and northern Nevada's booming urban development, the Lahontan Valley wetlands persist as one of the most important birding sites on the Pacific Flyway. Birds of the Lahonton Valley is a major contribution to the study of natural history in the Great Basin. Authors Graham Chisholm and Larry A. Neel provide a comprehensive discussion of the geologic history of the area; the intricate relationships among climate, soil, vegetation, and local fauna; and the impact of humankind, from the ancient Paiute people to the farmers and ranchers of today. The book's greatest significance, however, lies in its detailed account of the bird species sighted in the Lahontan Valley, a listing that will be invaluable to scientists and casual birders alike. Enhanced by 60 line drawings by ornithological artist Mimi Hoppe Wolf, four maps, and directions to bird-viewing sites, Birds of the Lahontan Valley is an essential resource for birders, naturalists, conservationists, and anyone interested in the outdoors.