Here's a few of my favorite books (and a lot of poultry books, too).

First, the most favorite book in my life:

  • The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett. When everything in the world goes wrong, this book can center you again. Thanks, RoseBud.
    Order this book now from amazon. com.

    Another real favorite:

  • My Family and Other Animals by Gerald Durrell.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.
    All of his early books are just wonderful, both the other autobiographical ones and the ones on collecting animals for zoos. Of these I especially recommend The Bafut Beagles, The Overloaded Ark, (order) and The Drunken Forest. In addition to being a great naturalist, Durrell (who, sadly, passed away early in '95) possessed both a truly great sense of humor and an outstanding ability to describe people. Great books with good ROFL scenes.

    Best dog book:

  • The Dog Who Wouldn't Be by Farley Mowat.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

    Second best dog book:

  • Merle's Door: Lessons from a Freethinking Dog by Ted Kerasote.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

    Some Science Fiction & Fantasy I recommend to beginners:

  • Hospital Station by James White. His Sector General series, of which this is the first, includes some of the most fascinating aliens--both as patients and medics--with incredibly well-thought-out biologies.
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  • The Dragon and the George by Gordon Dickson. Humorous fantasy.
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  • Decision at Doona by Anne McCaffrey. I enjoy speculations on social relations between aliens and humans.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Pawn of Prophecy by David Eddings. First book of a great series.
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  • West of the Sun by Edgar Pangborn. More social Sci-fi.
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  • a day of adventuring with my AD&D & Mac mentor SWL is highly recommended! And there's some great computer art and photography on his site.


    Poultry Books


    I'm making what I can available in association with


    Backyard chickens

  • Chickens in Your Backyard by Rick & Gail Luttmann, 1976, 157 pp., Rodale Press, ISBN: 0-87857-125-6.
    IMHO, this is the best book around for beginners and backyarders.
    Order this book now from amazon. com.

  • The Small-Scale Poultry Flock by Harvey Ussery, 2011, 394 pp., Chelsea Green Publishing, ISBN: 1603582908.
    Harvey covers it all, for anyone raising chickens for eggs and/or meat. In addition to management tips, breeding info, hatching and raising how-to's, pasturing poultry, rotating crops and chickens, using manure in gardens, and alternative feeds, he even discusses the philosophy of raising your own food. In the author's own words: "My ideal reader is the backyard homesteader, or small-scale farmer, whose goal is the production of all the family's eggs and dressed poultry (and potentially enough to provide to other nearby families), using methods that utilize the flock as an integrated part of the total food-independence enterprise." I'd recommend this book to anyone keeping more than 10 birds.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Living with Chickens by Jay Rossier, 2002, 203 pp., The Lyons Press, ISBN: 1585744522.
    This is a very complete, homey, friendly and simple book on raising chickens. I am impressed with how he manages to cover so many topics quite thoroughly and yet retain that over-the-back-fence feeling throughout the book. The book first talks about chickens and why you'd want them and what they are like, and then goes into raising chicks, hatching eggs, housing the fowl, keeping hens for eggs and how to butcher meat birds. An excellent choice for the beginner at raising fowl.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Storey's Guide to Raising Chickens (3rd edition) by Gail Damerow, 2010, 438 pp., Storey Publishing, ISBN: 1603424695.
    Lots of great information in here for beginners and for those with lots of experience. But I still think the first book in this list, by Gail in a previous incarnation, is the best thing around for those who want to get a real feel for starting with chickens.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • The Complete Idiot's Guide to Raising Chickens by Jerome D. Belanger, 2010, 190 pp., Storey Publishing, ISBN: 1592579868.
    You've never had chickens? Here you go: a nice, easy to understand book that gives you the basics you need for deciding what to get, how to raise and keep them, and even why. Plus there are lots of tips and various notes of interesting things about these fowl.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • The Chicken Encyclopedia: An Illustrated Reference by Gail Damerow, 2012, 319 pp., Alpha, ISBN: 1603425616.
    Just what it sounds like. You'll want it in your library. Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • The Chicken: A Natural History, edited by Dr. Joseph Barber, 2012, 224 pp., Race Point Publishing, ISBN: 1937994031.
    Get it! Not your average chicken book. Chapters on Evolution, Anatomy & Biology, Behavior, Intelligence and Breeds. Enjoyed reading this one. I often don't agree with their choices of what breeds to put under what headings -- why are RIRs, Wyandottes, New Hampshires, Rocks etc. placed under Layers and not Dual Purpose? And the caption "male rooster" (p. 58) -- is there another kind? Not all the pictures are really relevant to their captions, either, and the hen on p. 19 is not a Wyandotte! And the last sentence on p. 157 -- yeah, right! But allowing for this stuff, it's still a great read and resource and stuffed full of interesting information that you don't get in most of the "how to keep chickens" books.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Chickens: Their Natural and Unnatural History, by Janet Lembke, 2012, 224 pp., Skyhorse Publishing, ISBN: 162087055X.
    Another one you should have! Another non-typical chicken book. The first half of the book deals with chickens in history and the history of chickens. Then there's interesting info on eggs, chickens in science, chickens in myth, and finally chicken cuisine.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Why Did the Chicken Cross the World?: The Epic Saga of the Bird That Powers Civilization by Andrew Lawler, 2014, 324 pp., Atria Books, ISBN: 1476729891.
    A great trip and an interesting read! From the (presently nearing extinction) Red Junglefowl of Southeast Asia we follow the bird across various roads. On the other side we find the modern, bland industrial chicken.
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  • The Practical Guide to Keeping Chickens, Ducks, Geese & Turkeys by Fred Hams, 2012, 256 pp., Lorenz Books, ISBN: 1846890934.
    This book covers it all. It starts with info on combs, feather structure, patterns and colors. Then it moves on to buying poultry. The housing chapter includes info on what kinds of housing to use for various breeds and conditions and help on building your own coop. There is info on caring for, breeding and exhibiting poultry. This is followed by the second half of the book, which is an encyclopedia of over 100 breeds of fowl. The book is filled with good color photographs. The only "error" I found is that the picture of the Bronze Turkey looks to me like a Narragansett, but maybe that's just a UK difference.
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  • How to Raise Chickens: Everything You Need to Know, updated & revised by Christine Heinrichs, 2013, 208 pp., Voyageur Press, ISBN: 0760343772.
    Just what it says in the title. There were a few errors in the original, but they were fixed in the 2nd printing. But in this revised edition they're still not really checking the photos: on p. 55 the hen is not a Leghorn, on p. 65 those are Whites, not Auburns, on p. 98 the eggs aren't dark brown they are just your standard brown eggs, and on p. 106 the hen on the left is not a Faverolle.
    (For those of you who got the 1st printing, I'll keep my comments here: the bird on p. 21 is not a Red Junglefowl, on p. 30 the hen is not a Buff Orpington, on p. 53 the photo is of an Ameraucana, not all the chickens in the photo on p. 101 are Wyandottes and on p. 146 you should know that the APA also requires Modern Game cocks to be dubbed.)
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  • The Joy of Keeping Chickens: The Ultimate Guide to Raising Poultry for Fun or Profit by Jennifer Megyesi, 2009, 256 pp., Skyhorse Publishing, ISBN: 1602393133.
    This is a fairly complete book with sections on how to get your chickens, housing and feeding them, raising them for meat and/or eggs, recipies and a chapter on showing.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Talking Chicken: Practical Advice on Heirloom Chickens and Eggs by Kelly Klober, 2011, 395pp., Acres USA, ISBN: 1601730217.
    Review by Craig Soderberg
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  • Pure Poultry: Living Well with Heritage Chickens, Turkeys and Ducks by Victoria Redhed Miller, 2013, 220 pp., New Society publishers, ISBN: 0865717532.
    As much a "why to" as a "how to" book, the author discusses her experiences in becoming a poultry raiser. There are all sorts of tips on raising fowl, as well as much on homesteading with them and the reasons for same. Definitely a worthwhile addition to your poultry library and it's an enjoyable read, as well.
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  • Chick Days: Raising Chickens from Hatchlings to Laying Hens by Jenna Woginrich, 2010, 128pp., Storey Publishing, ISBN: 1603425845.
    This is a sort of "idiot's guide" to raising chickens - very simplistic but generally good.
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  • Keeping Chickens: The Essential Guide to Enjoying and Getting the Best from Chickens by Jeremy Hobson & Celia Lewis, 2007, 159 pp., David & Charles, ISBN: 0-7153-2567-1.
    An excellent introduction to chicken keeping, with chapters on understanding them, a nice section on breeds, where and when to get them, housing, feeding and breeding.
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  • City Chicks: Keeping Micro-flocks of Laying Hens as Garden Helpers, Compost Makers, Bio-recyclers and Local Food Suppliers by Patricia Foreman, 2009, 459 pp., Good Earth Publications, ISBN: 0-9624648-5-6.
    Get this one! It's filled with interesting info. Definitely a keeper for any backyarder, homesteader or breeder's library.
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  • Kids!!: Your Chickens: A Kid's Guide to Raising and Showing by Gail Damerow, 1993, 156 pp., Storey Publishing, ISBN: 0-88266-823-4.
    A very clear book which does exactly what the title suggests. Not a bad read for adult beginners, either.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Kids!!: Young Chicken Farmers: Tips for Kids Raising Backyard Chickens by Vickie Black, 2013, 29 pp., Beaver's Pond Press, ISBN: 1592985556.
    This book, with clear and simple writing and great photos, will introduce your child to what is necessary to raise chickens.
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  • Small-scale Poultry Keeping by Ray Feltwell, 1992, 176 pp., Faber and Faber, London, ISBN: 0-571-16699-7.
    Another excellent beginner's book, this one was published in London and might be easier to find over there than the Luttmann book. His info on keeping birds is very good. I take exception to some of his info on breeds, however.
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  • Success with Chickens: The "What, Where and Why" of Trouble-free Chicken-keeping by J. C. Jeremy Hobson, 2012, 176 pp., Quiller Press, ISBN: 1846890934.
    Another of Hobson's concise books. He gives you all the main info you need to keep chickens in a straightforward, simple way.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Hen and the Art of Chicken Maintenance: Reflections on Keeping Chickens by Martin Gurdon, 2004, 152 pp., The Lyons Press, ISBN: 1-59228-323-3.
    A really enjoyable read! I wouldn't buy this book as a guide to keeping fowl, but as a backup it's great. Humorous but factual, it describes the author's experiences in backyard hen keeping. There is also a very nice, clear chapter on chicken biology.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Poultry Matters, a video, by Alexandra Bastedo & David Bland, 1995, Light Sussex Productions, Greenfields Farm, Fontwell Ave., Eastergate, Chichester, Sussex PO20 6RU, England. Tel.: 01243 542815, fax: 01243 544662
    This video from the UK has lots of info on starting up with poultry. If you order it, specify whether you want the version for UK or US machines. There's a nice sequence on wing-clipping and one on how to tell who's laying well, although I find it to be overly cautious on the concept of mixing breeds in a laying flock. US folks be aware of some language differences, e.g., when Bland speaks of corn he's referring to whole wheat. And thanks to an e-mail from Naomi Jenkins, I now know that "surgical spirits" translates to "rubbing alcohol" in US English.

  • Poultry at Home, a video, by Victoria Roberts of the Domestic Fowl Trust, 1993, 77 minutes, Farming Press Videos, Wharfedale Road, Ipswich IP1 4LG, England; in USA and Canada distributed by: Diamond Farm Book Publishers.
    Another nice British video on keeping fowl. It illustrates, among other things, how to tell who's laying, how to sex two-month-old chicks, various types of small housing and deep litter housing, a very nice segment on feed and feeding, how to kill a bird, incubating, candling and brooding, and how to trim a rooster's spurs. An additional nice feature is that all this is done with examples utilizing over 50 pure breeds of poultry.

  • Practical Poultry Keeping by David Bland, 1996, 159 pp., Light Sussex Productions, Greenfields Farm, Fontwell Ave., Eastergate, Chichester, Sussex PO20 6RU, England, Tel.: 01243 542815, fax: 01243 544662, ISBN: 1 86126 010 5.
    This is a well-rounded book on keeping chickens, with chapters on breeds, housing, equipment, breeding and reproduction, natural and artificial incubation and more. It even includes a chapter on marketing (in the UK) and one on exhibition. There are lots of illustrations of houses and poultry-house equipment.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Free-range Chicken Gardens: How to Create a Beautiful, Chicken-friendly Yard by Jessi Bloom, 2012, 216 pp., Timber Press, ISBN: 1604692375.
    Chickens and gardens -- how do you get them to work together? This is the book for you. Innovative housing and fencing, chicken-friendly gardens, practical plants. Very useful book.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Hens in the Garden -- Eggs in the Kitchen by Charolotte Popescu, 2003, 160 pp., Cavalier Paperbacks, ISBN: 1-899470-23-9.
    This is a nice little book aimed at UK backyarders. In the first half it covers nicely the basics of getting and maintaining chickens. The second half is filled with egg recipes, for those who like to take their eggs seriously (I'm not a good reviewer for that section).

  • Raising Poultry the Modern Way by Leonard S. Mercia, 1975, 224 pp., Garden Way Publishing, ISBN: 0-88266-058-6.
    This is an old standby. Been around a long time now. If you can find it, it has a good section on caponizing.
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  • Storey's Guide to Raising Poultry, 4th edition by Glenn Drowns, 2012, 454 pp., Storey Publishing, ISBN: 1612120016.
    This new edition pretty much covers the subject. Everything from should I get poultry, breed info, raising info, butchering, showing, breeding, health. Add this one to your library!
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  • Backyard Poultry -- Naturally by Alanna Moore, 1998, 154 pp. Bolwarrah Press, ISBN: 0 9585590 1 5.
    This is a very nice Australian book. Nice clear info on maintaining chickens and ducks, including pictures and some information on various breeds. It accents "natural" raising, including discussing natural diets and homeopathic and natural remedies. There is an interesting chapter on permaculture -- the raising of fowl in a sort of natural woodland-type area, with plantings of natural feeds. It also has a nice little section on maintaining natural duck ponds.

  • Keep Chickens!: Tending Small Flocks in Cities, Suburbs, and Other Small Spaces by Barbara Kilarski, 2003, 150 pp., Storey Publishing, ISBN: 1580174914.
    As the title makes clear, this book is oriented for folks keeping just a few chickens. It has sections on coops and chicken care, plus some color photos of 10 preferred breeds and some urban coops. There is also a small section with egg recipes. A nice little book for the urban poultry keeper.
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  • Chickens: Tending a Small-Scale Flock for Pleasure and Profit by Sue Weaver, 2005, 144 pp., BowTie Press, ISBN: 1931993483.
    I was unimpressed. I found a bunch of misinformation and many incorrect IDs of breeds, e.g., a Wyandotte called a Rock and Guinea keets identified as Red Junglefowl. I'd pass this one up.
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  • The Big Book of Garden Hens by Francine Raymond, 2006 (4th ed.), 120 pp., A Kitchen Garden Book, ISBN: 0-9532857-3-1.
    this book on raising a few hens for your yard includes simple henhouse plans, a calendar of events in the "chicken-keeping year," and short notes on various breeds. Kitchen Garden also has some other books on poultry by Francine Raymond, including A Hen Keeper's Journal, Keeping a Few Hens in Your Garden and a DVD entitled A Guide to Keeping Hens in Your Garden.

  • Hen Keeping: Self-sufficiency by Mike Hatcher, 2009, 128 pp., New Holland Publishers, ISBN: 978 1 84773 420 4.
    It's a fine book on keeping hens, just not the one I'd pick as first choice.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • The Chicken Whisperer's Guide to Keeping Chickens by Andy G. Schneider and Brigid McCrea, 2011, 176 pp., Quarry Books, ISBN: 1592537286.
    Here we have another book on keeping chickens. Lots of pretty pictures, not a lot of text.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Keeping Chickens: Self-sufficiency by Michael Hatcher, 2010, 128 pp., Skyhorse Publishing, ISBN: 1602399778.
    Yet another -- the book starts with a concise text on how to keep your birds. The second half of the book covers various breeds (common and not so common British fowl); the illustrations are good drawings, not photos.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Backyard Farming: Raising Chickens by Kim Pezza, 2013, 114 pp., Hatherleigh Press, ISBN: 1578264448.
    Still another book on keeping chickens. The usual content but from some text errors it seems that the author isn't really aware of what a breed is.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • A Guide to Keeping Poultry in Australia by Dorothy Reading, 1981, 144 pp. Viking / Penguin Books Australia Ltd., 487 Maroondah Highway, PO Box 257, Ringwood, Victoria 3134, Australia, ISBN: 0 670 90273 X.
    A passable book. Not great, but if you're in Oz and it's all you can find, it'll certainly be helpful. Mostly about chickens, with brief chapters on ducks, geese, turkeys, guineas, quail and pheasants.

  • Barnyard in Your Backyard: A Beginner's Guide to Raising Chickens, Ducks, Geese, Rabbits, Goats, Sheep, and Cattle edited by Gail Damerow, 2002, 408 pp., Storey Books, ISBN: 1-58017-456-6.
    The editor of this one (Gail Damerow) is one of the modern mavens of backyard poultry and the chapters on Chickens and Ducks & Geese (each about 50 pp.) are chock full of good information.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Poultry House Construction by Michael Roberts, 1997, 91 pp. Available from Gold Cockerel Books, Domestic Fowl Research, Kennerleigh, Nr. Crediton, Devon, EX17 4RS, England, ISBN: 0 947870 21 0.
    This handy little book has plans for nest boxes, range feeders, broody coops, trap nests, and houses to hold up to 12-20 chickens.

  • Reinventing the Chicken Coop: 14 Original Designs with Step-by-Step Building Instructions by Kevin McElroy & Matthew Wolpe, 2012, 191 pp., Storey Publishing, ISBN: 1603429808.
    Interesting coops and detiled instructions for building them, plus 2 opening chapters, one on coop basics and one on tools etc. and how to use them. Very worthwhile if you're gonna build your own coop.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Chicken Coops: 45 Building Plans for Housing Your Flock by Judy Pangman, 2006, 166 pp., Storey Publishing, ISBN: 1580176275.
    Don't expect formal plans here. This book is full of plans of different peoples coops, including a section of color pictures. All sorts of coops, from backyard city units to range shelters. It's amazing what old "junk" you can use to make a functional chicken coop and this book will give you lots of ideas.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Barns, Sheds & Outbuildings: Placement, Design and Construction by Byron D. Halsted, editor, 1994 (originally published 1881), 236 pp., Alan C. Hood & Co., Chambersburg, PA, ISBN: 0-911469-12-5.
    This reprint has interesting plans for various farm buildings, including a whole bunch of poultry houses.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • How to Build Small Barns and Outbuildings by Monte Burch, 1992, 280 pp., Storey Publishing, ISBN: 0-88266-773-4.
    The first two-thirds of the book is a section on general construction techniques, which is then followed by plans for various projects, including various barns, sheds and two chicken coops.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • The Mobile Poultry Slaughterhouse: Building a Humane Chicken Processing Unit to Strengthen Your Local Food System by Ali Berlow, 2013, 133 pp., Storey Publishing, ISBN: 1612121292.
    It is exactly what it says it is, with a Foreword by Temple Grandin.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • The Gardeners' and Poultry Keepers' Guide and Illustrated Catalogue of Good Manufactured and Supplied by W. Cooper. by W. Cooper, 1914 (special reprint edition 2010), 306 pp., Shelter Publications, ISBN: 0936070471.
    A catalog of the company's plans for various coops, duck houses, and all sorts of out buildings. It'll give you all sorts of ideas. And there's lots of turn of the century poultry info scattered throughout.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Fences for Pasture & Garden by Gail Damerow, 1992, 154 pp., Storey Publishing, ISBN: 088266753X.
    I learned a lot from this one. It doesn't deal particualrly with poultry, but if you're gonna build a fence, it'll tell you how. The only problem I found is that it doesn't tell you that "chicken wire" is only good for keeping chickens in, not for keeping predators out (unless you add some electric scare wires to the top and outside).
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Chicken Tractor by Andy Lee, 1998, 318 pp., Good Earth Publications, Shelburne, VT, ISBN: 0-9624648-6-4.
    How to run your chickens in a portable, bottomless pen, so you can have them work over your soil yet keep them controlled.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Day Range Poultry: Every Chicken Owner's Guide to Grazing Gardens and Improving Pastures by Andy Lee & Patricia Foreman, 2005, 305 pp., Good Earth Publications, ISBN: 0962464872.
    If you just have a few birds, you may want to go with Lee's book on Chicken Tractors, above. But if you have a fair number of birds, or a small commercial operation, this book looks at production, processing and marketing. It is concerned with layers, broilers and turkeys. I found it worthwhile simply for its chapter on (plus other tips on) working with electric fences and poultry netting. There are some errors in information about chickens, e.g., the authors think that white chickens lay white eggs and colored chickens lay brown eggs -- this would fascinate a White Wyandotte or a Brown Leghorn, I'm sure. But in the area of their expertise, I highly recommend it.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • The Chicken Health Handbook by Gail Damerow, 1994, 344 pp., Garden Way Publishing, Storey Communications, ISBN: 0-88266-611-8.
    Once you've got your birds and they're settled in, this is a great reference to have on hand.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Diseases of Free-Range Poultry by Victoria Roberts, 2000, 152 pp., Whittet Books, ISBN: 1 873580 53 3.
    This volume from the UK covers most of the diseases you'll come across, plus a few odd things like laying capabilities of various breeds and a chapter on sex reversal in birds.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Poultry and Waterfowl Problems by Michael Roberts, 1998, 89 pp. Available from Gold Cockerel Books, Domestic Fowl Research, Kennerleigh, Nr. Crediton, Devon, EX17 4RS, England, ISBN: 0 947870 261.
    This very handy little book has sections on chickens, waterfowl and turkeys. It not only covers common diseases, but also various problems you may encounter -- from dropped tongue in geese thru impacted crops and fighting in turkeys.

  • The Poultry Farmer's and Manager's Veterinary Handbook by Peter W Laing, 1999, 176 pp., Crowood Press, ISBN: 1 86126 261 2.
    You want to know more about poultry diseases? This British book is broken down by various systems, e.g., digestive system, eye, immune system, etc. It includes a chapter on handling and treating chickens.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • The Chicken Book by Page Smith & Charles Daniel, 2000 (1975), 380 pp., University of Georgia Press, ISBN: 0-8203-2213-X.
    If you're a chicken person, get this book -- just for the general historical information. It covers the history of the chicken (remember that it was actually written in 1975), Aldrovandi's historical works on chickens, cockfighting, the biology and development of chickens, and the industrialization of the chicken. There is also a passable section on keeping chickens (tho' I think you'd do better with one of the books mentioned above on this) and it closes with a chapter on the culinary chicken, including some recipes.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Modern Poultry Development: A History of Domestic Poultry Keeping by H. Easom Smith, 1976, 215 pp., Spur Publications Co., c/o Beech Publishing, 7 Station Yard, Elsted Marsh, Midhurst GU29 0JT, England, ISBN: 0 904558 08 8.
    A nice British book covering the history of many breeds.

  • Bantams: A Guide to Keeping, Breeding and Showing by J. C. Jeremy Hobson, 2005, 159 pp., Crowood Press, ISBN: 1 86126 786 X.
    A very nice book for beginners. There are chapters on housing, feeding, showing and rearing including incubation. There is also a chapter on bantam ducks and one on various breeds. A good selection of quality black & white and color photographs of many breeds is included. My only bone to pick with the book is in his short "Brief History" of chickens, which, IMHO, is a flight in fancy.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Bantam Chickens by Fred P. Jeffrey. 1976, 308 pp. Available from the American Bantam Association, PO Box 127, Augusta, NJ 07822, e-mail: fancybntms@aol.com.
    Jeffrey's book has information on a great variety of breeds, followed by chapters on all aspects of keeping and exhibiting bantams. The large section on breeding has major amounts of info on poultry genetics, for those of you trying to develop certain strains.

  • Bantams & Small Poultry by Joseph Batty, 1996, 224 pp., Beech Publishing, ISBN: 1857361741.
    Covers many breeds of bantams, with lots of illustrations including quite a few color plates. Batty discusses the development and history of bantams.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Bantams and Miniature Fowl in Colour, by Michael Roberts, 2010, 68 pp., Gold Cockerel Books, ISBN: 0947870660.
    Photos and some info on most of the accepted UK breeds.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

    Breeds

  • C.S.Th. van Gink's Poultry Paintings by A.W. van Wulfften Palthe, 1992, 136 pp., Dutch Branch of the World's Poultry Science Association, Beekbergen, the Netherlands.
    This one isn't still in publication, but you can find a copy if you search! And it's worth it. The paintings of many breeds are wonderful. Plus there is historic information about each one in both English and Dutch.

  • Old English Game Bantams as Bred and Shown in the United States by F. P. Jeffrey and William Richardson, 1995, 126 pp., Old English Game Bantam Club of America, 316 Sullivan Rd., Simpsonville, SC 29680, 864-299-0901, e-mail: Syg4138@aol.com.
    If you are breeding or showing OEG bantams, this book is a must! Chapters discuss their history, standards, judging, conditioning, principles of breeding and genetics of OEG bantams, and all the various color varieties, including 48 color photos of those.

  • Old English Game Colour Guide by Dr. J. Batty, 2000, 128 pp., Beech Publishing, 7 Station Yard, Elsted Marsh, Midhurst GU29 0JT, England, ISBN: 1-85736-397-3.
    Totally filled with pictures of OEGs, both large and bantam, there's no logic to the order of things that I can see, but if you want pictures of many colors of OEG, this is the book for you.

  • A Study of "Old" English Game by David Holden, nd (but I received it in 2010), 70 pp., $60AUD, available from David Holden, 25 Miles Rd, West Creek VIC, 3992, Australia; Phone: 0356749390; cheekylilchic@gmail.com.
    Contains information on conformation, judging, colors, husbandry and exhibition of OEGs.

  • Oriental Gamefowl by Horst W. Schmudde, 2005, 208 pp., AuthorHouse, ISBN: 1420876813.
    If you want to learn about the history, breeding and maintenance of many breeds of gamefowl, including longtails and long-crowers, this book is for you. Read more about it in the SPPA review.

  • The Game Fowl Colour Guide by Owen Dickey, [2006], 141 pp., privately published.
    Very nice book if you want to see the range of colors that Game Fowl can be found in. There are 86 full color original images, mostly photos but a few paintings. Most of the birds shown are Irish Game, but there are also some American Game and some Oxford OEGs. There is also a section at the end on Asils. Unfortunately the author's address no longer works. I don't know how to get it.

  • Long Tailed Fowl: Their History and Care by David Rogers and Toni-Marie Astin, 2007, 84 pp., available from onagadori_south@msn.com, ISBN: 1574724142.
    This book is just what its title says. A must have for anyone keeping long-tailed fowl.

  • The Nankin Bantam: A Rare and Ancient Fowl by Mark A. Fields, 2006, 102 pp., American Livestock Breeds Conservancy, ISBN: 978-1-887316-05-7. Available from the ALBC Store.
    The first book devoted to this interesting breed. Has information on both origin and modern breeding.

  • The Sussex, by Peter Smith with Adrian Kuys, 2000, 84 pp., Bellsouth Publications, PO Box 1233 Narre Warren 3805 Australia, ISBN: 0949340154.
    Peter Smith is a leading Sussex breeder in Australia. His book includes chapters on the Australian standard, colors, preparing for show, management and breeding. The chapters on the history of the Sussex breed and Sussex genetics were researched by Adrian Kuys. This well put together book includes 31 color plates and will be useful to Sussex breeders worldwide.
    Order this book now from www.heritagepoultry.net.

  • The Dorking Cockerel by David Burton, 2013, 20 pp., The Cockerel Press, ISBN: 978-1-909871-02-1.
    This is a nice little booklet on the history and status of the Dorking. It is available from the Dorking Museum & Heritage Centre.

  • The [Australian] Wyandotte Colour Guide: A comprehensive guide to the Standard plumage requirements for the Wyandotte fowl compiled by The Wyandotte Club of Australia (Inc.), 2009, 69 pp. Order from the Wyandotte Club Secretary, Duane Rhall, P.O. Box 307, Parkes N.S.W. 2870 Australia.

  • The Chanticler & Other Rare Poultry Breeds by Linda M. Gryner, 1996, 269 pp., Gold in the Hand Books (4094 Ross St., RR #5, Forest, Ontario, Canada N0N 1J0), ISBN: 1-895265-01-0.
    A very nice book which covers, obviously, the history of Canada's own breed, the Chanticler. It also has 21 chapters on other rare breeds, including Araucanas, Barnevelders, Dorkings, Marans, Redcaps, Turkens, Welsummers and 14 others, as well as chapters on incubation, brooding, artificial insemination and other useful information.

  • Storey's Illustrated Guide to Poultry Breeds by Carol Ekarius, 2007, 278 pp., Storey Publishing, ISBN: 1580176674.
    A little general information on poultry, followed by photos and text of many breeds of chickens, turkeys, ducks, geese and various other fowl. A nice book for your collection.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Traditional British Poultry Breeds by Benjamin Crosby, 2012, 142 pp., The Crowood Press, ISBN: 184797337X.
    This useful book has pics and info on 23 breeds of chicken and 12 waterfowl, all pretty much native to the UK.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Choosing & Raising Chickens: The Complete Guide to Breeds and Welfare by Jeremy Hobson & Celia Lewis, 2009, 160 pp., David & Charles, ISBN: 0-7153-3310-0.
    This book has an extended and well illustrated section on various breeds, plus a lot of info on keeping chickens and where and how to get them.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • The Newcomer's Guide to Poultry Breeds by Grant Brereton -- an e-book. Available from gbpoultry.com.

  • Pocketful of Poultry by Carol Ekarius, 2007, 272 pp., Storey Publishing, ISBN: 1580176771.
    This is a ssmall book (6.1 x 4.3 x 0.8 inches) which has the form of a field guide to various breeds of chickens, ducks, geese and turkeys. Gives a few main features of each breed, with pictures and icons which tell you whether the breed is ornamental, a layer or a good meat breed. they left out the description of the icons, so I'll tell you that the ones in red are the ones that apply to each breed. It'll be a handy little addition to your library.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Hobby Farms Guide to Chicken Breeds by Sharon Biggs Waller, 2013, 128 pp., Hobby Farms Presents Series Volume 11F, I-5 Publishing, 3 Burroughs, Irvine, CA 92618.
    This is a supplement to a magazine, but is a nice work covering over 90 breeds. I found a copy in a local Tractor Supply.

  • The Backyard Field Guide to Chickens: Chicken Breeds for Your Home Flock by Christine Heinrichs, 2016, 208pp., Voyageur Press, ISBN: 0760349533.
    A nice book, with photographs and text on many breeds. Very helpful for learning about them. The author has included chapters on keeping poultry and on the history of domestication.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • The Field Guide to Chickens by Pam Percy, 2006, 143 pp., Voyageur Press, ISBN: 0760324735.
    A handy little book, with information on over 60 breeds recognized by the APA. In addition to the breed profiles, there are short chapters on the history of chickens, their physical characteristics and their behavior. The only drawback is that most of the pictures are from old paintings and drawings, which I never really like to use in identifying something. These are not paintings made for the puprpose, like those in the Peterson wildlife field guides, but mostly old art and/or catalog type images.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Stairway to the Breeds by Ian Kay, 1997, 442 pp., Scribblers Publishing, The Watermill, Southwell Road, Kirklington, Notts NG22 8NQ England. ISBN: 1-871644-04-6.
    Lots of historical info on, and illustrations of, more than 100 breeds of chickens. There is a center section with color photos, but there is also a multitude of B&W photographs, both of more recent vintage and of various winning fowl from back to the early 1900s. Most of the B&W images are not very clear, but they do show the history of development within the various breeds. Kay covers both common breeds such as Orpingtons, Leghorns and Dorkings and rarer ones including Yorkshire Hornets, Orloffs and Kiwis.
    I do take exception to his chapter on the origin of domestic fowl. A sounder footing in evolutionary biology and the process of selective breeding would have been helpful here. There's no logical reason to state that large fowl like Brahmas and Shamos couldn't have been developed from a smaller ancestor (meaning the Red Jungle Fowl). We have developed Shires and other large draft horses from the same original stock as Shetland ponies and both Great Danes and Chihuahuas come from a common wolf ancestry. Why try to make things more confusing with fowl? I also would point out that Saipan Jungle Fowl (which are not really a Jungle Fowl but rather a game breed of chicken) were developed on the island of Saipan in the Western Pacific, not in the jungles of Brazil.

  • Poultry for Anyone by Victoria Roberts, 1998, 144 pp., Whittet Books Ltd. (Hill Farm, Stonham Rd., Cotton, Suffolk IP14 4RQ, England); in the USA and Canada distributed by: Diamond Farm Book Publishers, ISBN: 1 873580 38 X.
    This sounds like a book on how to raise poultry . . . but it's not. It is instead a very useful book which covers 44 breeds of chickens, with nice color photos and a page or two of text on each, including a bit of history and general characteristics. Includes a list of the varieties of each breed recognized by the British Poultry Standards.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • British Large Fowl by Michael Roberts, 1994, 43 pp. Available from Gold Cockerel Books, Domestic Fowl Research, Kennerleigh, Nr. Crediton, Devon, EX17 4RS, England, ISBN: 0 947870 11 3.
    Information on, and color photos of, 21 breeds of British standard chickens.

  • The Illustrated Guide to Chickens: How to Choose Them, How to Keep Them by Celia Lewis, 2011, 192 pp., Skyhorse Publishing, ISBN: 1616084251.
    This book is full of breeds available in the UK. There is some info on each breed and the many illustrations are all watercolors.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Counting Our Chickens: Identifying Breeds in Danger of Extinction, by Marjorie E. F. Bender, Robert O. Hawes & Donald E. Bixby, 2004, 52 pp. The American Livestock Breeds Conservancy, ISBN: 1-887316-05-1.
    This book discusses the various rare and endangered breeds of chickens in North America, especially in the USA, listing how many breeding flocks exist. It includes an extensive appendix of breeds and the hatcheries and individual breeders from which they are available.

  • Rare Breeds: The Encyclopedia of Historic and Endangered Livestock and Poultry Breeds by Janet Vorwald Dohner, 2001, 514 pp. (75 pp. specifically on poultry), Yale University Press, ISBN: 0-300-08880-9.
    An incredible amount of research went into this volume. It opens each section with a discussion of the history and domestication of chickens, turkeys, ducks and geese, and then covers the breeds specifically. 21 breeds of chicken, 9 turkeys, 14 ducks and 9 geese are dealt with specifically. If you are into rare breeds, this book is a must. Its coverage of large livestock is also equally complete.
    Order this book now from amazon. com.

  • Rare Poultry Breeds by David Scrivener, 2006, 272 pp., Crowood Press, ISBN: 1 86126 889 0.
    Add this one to your library! Lots of info on the history of various rare breeds of chickens, leaning towards the European breeds, but not cofined to them.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Rare Breeds: A Conservation Breeding Handbook by D. Phillip Sponenberg and Carolyn J. Christman, 1995, 136 pp., The American Livestock Breeds Conservancy, ISBN: 1-887316-00-0.
    Although it covers all breeds of livestock, this book includes a section on raising rare breeds of poultry. After discussing what breeds are and the philosophy of breeding, the authors cover breeding systems, the establishment of a conservation flock and various conservation programs. Definitely a must for the library of any serious breeder of rare fowl.

    More Chicken Books

  • Bibliography: Books on Poultry: A Collectors Bibliography, by John Palmer, 2003, 67 pp., pamphlet, Arnold Books.
    This bibliography lists over 1000 titles on poultry, with a heavy emphasis on Australasian texts but including a fair selection of British and American titles.

  • Bibliography: Poultry Books: An Australian Bibliography, by Adrian C. Kuys, 2002, 71 pp., pamphlet, Heritage Poultry Stud, ISBN: 0646419846.
    This nice bibliography sticks to Australian published works on poultry.

  • Bibliography: A Bibliography of Gamecocks & Cock-fighting, by John Norris & John Palmer, 1995, 34 pp., pamphlet, Arnold Books, ISBN: 0-9583250-0-6.
    The emphasis here is on historical titles.

  • Book to avoid: Poultry of the World by Loyl Stromberg, 1996, Silvio Mattacchione & Co., ISBN: 1895270162.
    Here's a book review, with the reasons why to avoid this book.
    Order this book now from amazon.com (well, it's your choice, but I wouldn't do it!)

  • Coffee Table Book: Extraordinary Chickens by Stephen Green-Armytage, 2000, 112 pp., Harry N. Abrams, Inc., ISBN: 0-8109-3343-8.
    Truly a coffee table book, with lovely photos and little text. There are tiny blurbs on the different breeds, from a sentence to a paragraph, but there are great pictures of over 50 breeds. It's now on my coffee table.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Pocket Guide: Extraordinary Chickens: Chunky Version by Stephen Green-Armytage, 2003, 352 pp., Harry N. Abrams, Inc., ISBN: 0-8109-9066-0.
    Pocket-sized paperback version of the above, with lovely photos (more than in the original, I understand) and little text. There are tiny blurbs on the different breeds, from a sentence to a paragraph, but there are great pictures of over 50 breeds. Note: I haven't seen this one personally.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Coffee Table Book: Extra Extraordinary Chickens by Stephen Green-Armytage, 2005, 112 pp., Harry N. Abrams, Inc., ISBN: 0-8109-5924-0.
    A follow-up to the above books, with lovely photos and little text. There are tiny blurbs on the different breeds, from a sentence to a paragraph, but there are great pictures of over 50 breeds. It concentrates more on the ornamental breeds. It's also now on my coffee table.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Coffee Table Book: The Fairest Fowl: Portraits of Championship Chickens by Tamara Staples, 2001, 108 pp., Chronicle Books LLC, ISBN: 0-8118-3137-X.
    Excellent photos of many fowl, done to capture the personality of the birds, rather than Standard of Perfection poses. Very brief descriptions of each breed shown, plus a description of color, feather type, size, and area of origin.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Coffee Table Book: The Complete Chicken: An Entertaining History of Chickens by Pam Percy, 2002, 144 pp., Voyager Press, ISBN: 0 89658 557 3.
    As an entertaining history it's a fine book, but beware of some of the factual chicken information. Enjoy instead the myths, household chicken items and stuff about the chicken in art and literature. I would just ignore Chapters 1 & 2.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Coffee Table Book: Roosters & Hens for the Appreciative Eye by Suze Craig & Ros Harvey, 2006, 190 pp., Ballyhay Books, ISBN: 1 900935 45 7.
    This book is filled with lovely paintings of chickens of various breeds (identified). There is also a column or two of text about each of the breeds.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Coffee Table Book: Chickens by Ernest Goh, 2015, 178pp., Abrams, New York, ISBN: 1419714228.
    Photographs -- lots of wonderful, artsy photos of chickens..
    Order this book now from amazon.com.


    Standards:

  • The American Standard of Perfection, 1998 as periodically revised by The American Poultry Association, Inc. "A complete description of all recognized breeds and varieties of domestic poultry."
    In my opinion, the revisions prior to 1983 had much better illustrations, even though they were in black and white. If my standard Buff Brahmas or Black East Indies Ducks looked like the illustrations in this new revision, I'd put them out of their misery.
    I understand that the APA is also making available a loose-leaf version of the standard which incorporates the older black and white illustrations from artists such as Schilling.

  • British Poultry Standards by Victoria Roberts.
    The official reference of the Poultry Club of Great Britain. I've now seen a copy of this. For most breeds, it has a photograph of an individual bird that is typical of what is winning in British shows, with the disclaimer that this does not mean the picture is exactly true to the standard. In my opinion, a much better approach than that of the APA (see above).

  • Gallinas de Raza by Amadeu Francesch Vidal (in Spanish), 1998.
    Recently published to provide a standard for breeds of chickens in Spain. Nice photographs of most breeds, usually at least a male and female of each. This book is available by contacting Dr. Amadeu Francesch Vidal, Av. Sant Jordi 28, 43340 Montbrió del Camp, Spain; e-mail: afv@infomail.lacaixa.es.


  • Old book: The Complete Poultry Book by W. Powell-Owen, 1924, 333 pp., Cassell & Co., Ltd.
    If you can find it, it's a really great book both on keeping birds and on breeds.

  • Urban chickens: Keep Chickens: Tending Small Flocks in Cities, Suburbs, and Other Small Spaces by Barbara Kilarski, 2003, 150 pp., Storey Publishing, ISBN: 1-58017-491-4
    Nice book for folks with just a few fowl. Reasonably good coverage of keeping of chickens. Two things: She talks about using chicken wire for pens, but doesn't mention the negative that anything but chickens can break thru it so it doesn't really keep them safe, just confined. Also, she suggests dowels as perches, but these don't really give a grip to the birds and are not so good. Better to use 2x4s on edge or even old branches with the rough bark still on them.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Exhibition: Breeding for Success by Grant Brereton, 2013, 155pp., Gold Cockerel Books, Kennerleigh, Crediton, Devon. EX17 4RS, UK., ISBN: 978 0947870 584.
    If you show, you want this book. It starts with breeding, but continues on thru all aspects of showing and preparing for shows.

  • Exhibition: Exhibition Poultry Keeping by David Scrivener, 2005, 144 pp., Crowood Press, ISBN: 1861267398.
    This is the book you want if you want to learn about showing poultry (the emphasis is on chickens). It has sections on the history and organization of chicken shows, some info about important points in various breeds, good chapters on maintaining show stock and breeding and raising chicks (lots of this info is just generally good if you keep any chickens), and introductions to poultry genetics and breeding systems.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Exhibition: Cooping In by Pat Rubin, 1995, 24pp., Talisman Press; available from Pat Rubin, 651 Stonehouse Rd., Auburn, CA 95603, $5.
    Excellent little pamphlet for youth and beginners on all aspects of preparing for a show, what to do while there, and even going home. More experienced exhibitors won't lose on this one, either.

  • Exhibition: Poultry Shows & Showing by Joseph Batty, 1999, 188 pp., Beech Publishing, 7 Station Yard, Elsted Marsh, Midhurst GU29 0JT, England, ISBN: 1857361881.
    Starting with the history of poultry shows and the development of breeds, the author then discusses the various features of the fowl (tails, legs etc.) and concludes with sections on preparing for shows and judging.

  • The Mating and Breeding of Poultry by Harry M. Lamon & Rob R. Slocum, 2003 (originally published 1920), 341 pp., The Lyons Press, ISBN: 1-58574-814-5.
    First there are a couple chapters on the principles of breeding. Then a chapter on breeding for egg production. This is followed by many chapters covering many breeds, and discussing breeding for the various varieties. If you breed for show, you want this book in your library. If you don't, but are interested in chickens, you probably should investigate it anyway.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Genetics: 21st Century Poultry Breeding by Grant Brereton, 2008, 148 pp., Gold Cockerel Books, ISBN: 97809 47870 577.
    Brereton gives a nice, clear picture of plumage patterns and how the related genetics applies. Lots of photographs. A must for breeders (and those who are considering it).

  • Genetics: An Introduction to Color Forms of the Domestic Fowl by Brian Reeder, 2006, 80 pp., AuthorHouse, ISBN: 1-4259-0421-1.
    OK, I don't understand genetics, but if you do, you probably want this book. It describes the genetic makeup of every variety I've ever heard of and some I've not!
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Genetics: Making New Colours: The Simple Way to Create New Colours and Patterns of Poultry without any Jargon by Grant Brereton.
    This is an e-book and the only way to get it is to contact Grant at grantgb@hotmail.co.uk. He works mostly with Wyandottes, but has excellent explanations of how to make different colors in most any breed.

  • Genetics: An Introduction to Form and Feathering of the Domestic Fowl by Brian Reeder, 2011, 112 pp., AuthorHouse, ISBN: 1456747843.
    This book is fairly easy to read if you first follow the genetics tutorial in the first few chapters. Being a genetics idiot I was amazed at how much I was able to understand. If you're breeding, this would be an excellent addition to your library.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Incubation & Brooding: Hatching & Brooding Your Own Chicks by Gail Damerow, 2013, 239 pp., Storey Publishing, ISBN: 1612120148.
    Gail has done it again! A great and easy to understand book covering all aspects from getting the eggs to brooding the chicks. There are chapters on vvarious aspects of brooding, including using a hen, on selecting an incubator, and on how to use it once you've got it. It is a welcome addition to my library and should be in yours.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Incubation: Practical Incubation by Rob Harvey, 1993, 156 pp., Hancock House Publishers, ISBN: 0-88839-310-5.
    Nice book covering all aspects of incubation from handling the eggs to problem solving. Includes a color set of photos of a chick embryo at each day of development. Not limited to poultry, it covers penguins, hookbills and more.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Brooding: Success with Baby Chicks by Robert Plamondon, 2003, 155 pp., Norton Creek Press, ISBN: 0-9721770-0-0
    This volume covers brooding from the question of what kind of chicks to get (the author's personal interest is in production), basics of brooding, and then chapters on different types of brooders, feeders, waterers, litter, brooder houses and health. The illustrations unfortunately are poor quality black-and-white photos, but other than that there's a lot here for those interested in raising their own chicks.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Sexing: The Specialist Chick Sexer by R. D. Martin, 1994, 279 pp. Bernal Publishing, ISBN: 0 646 19886 6.
    The first section of the book is a history of chick sexing. This is followed by second section which is more practical, including a chapter on chick sexing schools, a chapter on chick sexing theory (with illustrations so that you can learn to do it!), a chapter on other methods of sexing besides vent sexing, and a chapter on sexing ostriches, emus and ducklings.

  • Sexing: Sexing All Fowl, Baby Chicks, Game Birds, Cage Birds by Loyl Stromberg compiler, 1977, 88 pp. Stromberg Publishing Co., Pine River, MN 56474, ISBN: 09157800308.
    Just what it says.

  • Historical book: Petaluma's Poultry Pioneers by Thea S. Lowry, editor, 1993, Manifold Press, POB 1744, Ross, CA 94957 ISBN: 0-9610116-0-2.
    Interesting little book wherein turn-of-the-century poultry farmers "recall the heyday of chicken ranching."
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Another historical book: Empty Shells: The Story of Petaluma, America's Chicken City by Thea S. Lowry, 2000, 271 pp., Manifold Press, ISBN: 0-9610116-1-0.
    The rise and fall of the poultry industry in California in the first half of the 1900s.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • More history: Home to Roost: A Backyard Farmer Chases Chickens through the Ages by Bob Sheasley, 2008, 290 pp., Thomas Dunne Books, St. Martin's Press, ISBN: 0312373643.
    Sheasley, a professional journalist, takes us on a tour of chicken history, from domestication through small farms and agribusiness, including his own experiences as a backyard poultry raiser. He brings to the fore Aldrovandi's old book on chickens and the fact and fiction therein, and gives us many facts along with a little (obvious) fiction. He talks about marketing, he speaks of the animal rights movement, and he flits from one subject to another in a delightful way. This was an entertaining and educational read.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Chicken Rights: Prisoned Chickens, Poisoned Eggs by Karen Davis, 1996, 175 pp., Book Publishing Company, ISBN: 1570670323.
    The founder of United Poultry Concerns exposes the horrors that millions of chickens undergo yearly in the egg and broiler industries.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Delightful book: The Painter Who Loved Chickens by Olivier Dunrea, 1995, A Sunburst Book, Farrar Straus Giroux, ISBN: 0374457085.
    This is a children's book, but the illustrations are excellent and the story is a delight--a must for all chicken lovers!
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Another fun book: My Fine Feathered Friend by William Grimes, 2002, 85 pp., North Point Press, Farrar Straus Giroux, ISBN: 0-86547-632-2.
    Grimes is a NY Times restaurant critic. One day he found a black hen in his yard in Queens, NY. This is their story. Plus the book has lots of surprisingly correct information on chickens in general.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Nighttime reading fun: Cluck: From Jungle Fowl to City Chicks by Susan Troller et al., 2011, 120 pp., Itchy Cat Press, ISBN: 0981516130.
    A collection of (mostly backyard) stories about chickens, and occasionally other fowl, illustrated by S. V. Medaris with some stories by other authors.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • More nighttime reading fun: In Praise of Chickens: A Compendium of Wisdom Fair and Fowl edited by Jane S. Smith, 2012, 166 pp., Lyons Press, ISBN: 0762773502.
    Just for the heck of it. Lots of short pieces from times BC through the present, on all sorts of chicken subjects. Runs the gamut from old wives tales through useful information -- adopt suggestions with care but it's a fun read.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • More fun: Birdology: Adventures with Hip Hop Parrots, Cantankerous Cassowaries, Crabby Crows, Peripatetic Pigeons, Hens, Hawks, and Hummingbirds edited by Sy Montgomery, 2010, 260 pp., Free Press, ISBN: 1416569855.
    I really enjoyed this one. There's a chicken chapter and a pigeon chapter, as well as a lot of info on other birds. A worthwhile read with lots of factoids.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Country Living: My Small Country Living by Jeanine McMullen, 1984, 219 pp., Warner Books, ISBN: 0-446-38305-8.
    This isn't a chicken book, but it's one of my very favorite books (and there are a few chickens in it). McMullen talks about moving to a country place from the city and keeping some small stock. It's wonderfully written, entertaining and really brings up not only the great things about this kind of move, but also all the things that can go wrong. I recommend it to anyone wanting to try small farming life, to anyone who loves creatures, and to anyone who likes to both laugh and sigh. And a great plus is that if you love it too, you can follow it up with The Wind in the Ash Tree and A Small Country Living Goes On.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Cook book: James Beard's Fowl & Game Bird Cookery by James Beard, 1979, 194 pp., Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, ISBN: 0-15-633340-6.
    Just ran across this in a used book store and had to include it. It's got chapters with recipes for chicken, turkey, duck, squab, goose, pheasant, quail, partridge, snipe, woodcock, and dove.

  • Cook Book: Chicken and Egg: A Memoir of Suburban Homesteading with 125 Recipes by Janice Cole, 2011, 255pp., Chronicle Books, ISBN: 0811870456.
    Really nice collection of poultry-related recipes, plus, scattered through the book is a collection of "how to" notes and anecdotes on raising chickens. A great addition to the library of anyone who eats their eggs or chickens.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Cook Book: The Fresh Egg Cookbook by Jennifer Trainer Thompson, 2012, 182 pp., Storey Publishing, ISBN: 1603429786.
    It's chock full of egg recipes.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.


    More historical readings:

  • How to Keep Hens for Profit by C. S. Valentine, 1913, 298 pp., The MacMillan Company. Read it online!

  • Wright's Book of Poultry by S. M. Lewer, 1911, 810pp., Cassell. Read it online!

  • Various old poultry books on line, including:

  • "Chickens for Use and Beauty" by H. S. Babcock, The Century; a Popular Quarterly, Volume 40 (May 1890): pp. 47-60. An article by a renowned authority of the time describing the recognized breeds of the day. Available through Cornell University's Making of America series.

  • The History of the Hen Fever: a Humorous Record by Geo. P. Burnham, 1855, Boston: J. French and Company. Before there was Frank Sinatra, Elvis, the Beatles, the hoola hoop, beany babies, or Pokemon, there were chickens. This classic book describes the fad that took the world by storm after the introduction of some exotic breeds of chickens in the early 19th Century. Available through University of Michigan's Making of America series.

  • The American Poulterer's Companion: a Practical Treatise on the Breeding, Rearing, Fattening, and General Management of the Various Species of Domestic Poultry by Caleb N. Bement, 5th ed. 1852, New York: Harper & Brothers. A wonderfully practical guide, and plentifully illustrated. Available through the University of Michigan's Making of America series.


    Chicken (and other fowl) magazines

  • Fancy Fowl, a British journal available from: TP Publications, Barn Acre House, Saxtead Green Nr. Woodbridge, Suffolk IP13 9QJ, England, Tel.: 01728 685842 (£29; £35 overseas). E-mail: fancyfowl@btopenworld.com
    Articles on breeds and lots of articles and pictures from various UK shows, plus more.

  • Backyard Poultry. Backyard Poultry Subscriptions, 145 Industrial Dr., Medford, WI 54451, or call 800-551-5691 ($21/year). Or find them on Facebook.
    Many articles on keeping fowl and many other interesting articles. A very friendly publication.

  • Poultry World. 3 Burroughs, Irvine, CA 92618, 949-855-8822, or email poultryworld@i5publishing.com.

  • Exhibition Poultry Magazine is a free online magazine. Lots of good articles.

  • Poultry Press, The poultry fancier's newspaper. PO Box 542, Connersville, IN 47331, USA ($16/year). E-mail: poultryp@si-net.com

  • National Poultry News promotes poultry, alternative livestock and exotics. PO Box 1647, Dept-SBJ, Easley, SC 29641 ($10/year). E-mail: frizzlebird@yahoo.com

  • Feather Fancier, a Canadian poultry mag. RR 5-P, Forest, ONT Canada N0N 1J0 ($18/year Canada; $20 US and abroad). E-mail: ffancier@mail.xcelco.on.ca

  • Grit and Steel, "The world's foremost game fowl journal." Drawer 280, Gaffney, SC 29342. 864-489-2324

  • Feathered World, a British magazine on the show circuit, leaning more to pigeons but with a fair amount of poultry coverage. SPR, Greenfields Farm, Fontwell Ave., Eastergate, Chichester, Sussex PO20 6RU, England. Tel.: 01243 542815, fax: 01243 544662

  • Australasian Poultry. Poultry Information Publishers, PO Box 438, Seymour, Victoria 3661, Australia. Phone: (03)5792 4000; fax: (03) 5792 4222

  • Aviculture Europe digital magazine in Dutch and English for poultry, pigeon and waterfowl lovers. Free omline.

  • British Poultry Science. For you scientific types, here's one of the poultry industry's main research journals. There are sometimes interesting behavioral articles in here, but a lot of it is technical articles aimed at improving egg and carcass production and the like.

  • The Journal of Applied Poultry Research. More science

  • Poultry Science. Yet more science

    (Chicken calendars at bottom of page)

    Guinea fowl

  • Gardening with Guineas by Jeannette S. Ferguson, 1999, 131 pp., Morris Publishing, ISBN 0-7392-0250-2.
    Finally, a useful book for those who want to raise guineas! Good info on how to get them, raise them, and manage them. There's also information on problems you may have, and even some recipes.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Guineafowl Past & Present, by Michael Roberts, 2002, 45 pp., Gold Cockerel Books, ISBN: 0947870369.
    Some stuff about 'em, how to keep and breed the and there's even a chapter on how to keep Crested and Vulturine Guineas.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Raising, Keeping and Using Guineas in Your Garden by April Howington, 2003, 27pp., privately published by H and H Poultry.
    A nice little pamphlet on keeping guineas.

  • Guinea Fowl of the World by R. H. Hastings Belshaw. Nimrod Book Services, PO Box 1, Liss, Hants. GU33 7PR, England. ISBN: 0-947647-20-1
    All I can say positively about this one is that it is about guineas.

    Turkeys

  • Birds of a Feather: Saving Rare Turkeys from Extinction by Carolyn J. Christman & Robert O. Hawes, 1999, 76 pp., American Livestock Breeds Conservancy, ISBN: 1-887316-03-5. Available from the ALBC for $21.95 plus shipping/handling. Send orders with payment to ALBC, PO Box 477, Pittsboro, NC 27312. To order by credit card call 919-542-5704, fax 919-545-0022 or e-mail albc@albc-use.org.
    A very nice little book, this volume first discusses both turkey natural history and their history in agriculture and industry. It also has chapters on genetic diversity of turkeys and on various rare varieties. It closes with a chapter on their conservation. Additionally there is a nice bibliography and a list of hatcheries and what turkeys they handle. A must for anyone concerned with the heritage breeds of turkeys and a good addition to any poultry library.

  • Presenting the Turkey: The Fabulous Story of a Flamboyant and Flavourful Bird, by Sabine Eiche, 2004, 127 pp., Centro Di, ISBN: 8870384144.
    This book is a work of art and among its topics one finds art that displays turkeys! It is highly illustrated with turkeys by old masters, unknown artists and others. The various chapters cover the history of the turkey: its discovery by Europeans, its travels to the Old World and back to the New, its fight with the eagle to be the US national bird, its culinary assets, and its lore. This book is a must for every turkey lover!
    For a more in-depth discussion see the SPPA review.
    Available in the US from Michael Shamansky, Bookseller, Inc., POB 3904, Kingston, NY 12402, mshamans@artbooks.com.

  • Not Just for Christmas: The Complete Guide to Raising Turkeys, by Janice Houghton-Wallace, 2007, 159 pp., available from Farming Books and Videos, ISBN: 978 1 904 871 18 7.
    A bit of everything for you. History, breeds (UK versions), how to keep them, raise them, butcher them, market them and show them. Get it, you'll be glad you did.

  • More Than a Meal: The Turkey in History, Myth, Ritual, and Reality by Karen Davis, 2001, 192 pp., Lantern Books, ISBN: 1930051883.
    This book looks at the history of the turkey, how it is seen in the modern world and the possibility of changing our eating habits at Thanksgiving. There is a lot of content here, an impressive overview and well referenced.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Ducks, Geese and Turkeys for Anyoone by Victoria Roberts, 2002, 128 pp. (turkey section starts on p. 95), Whittet Books. Available from Diamond Farm Book Publishers, ISBN: 1 873580 53 3.
    This sounds like a book on keeping birds, but although it has a small chapter on that it is mainly a book with descriptions and photographs of the various breeds and varieties kept in the UK.

  • Storey's Guide to Raising Turkeys: Breeds - Care - Marketing, 2nd edition, by Don Schrider, 2013, 310 pp., Storey Books, ISBN: 1612121500.
    This is the 2nd edition of Storey's straightforward book on keeping turkeys. It includes chapters on brooding, managing, and breeding them, plus a chapter on health and more on how to process and market your turkeys once you've grown them. Although the subtitle includes "Breeds," there is not an extensive coverage of this subject.
    Order this book now from amazon. com.

  • Turkeys: A Guide to Management by David C. Bland, 2000, 128 pp., Light Sussex Productions, Greenfields Farm, Fontwell Ave., Eastergate, Chichester, Sussex PO20 6RU, England, Tel.: 01243 542815, fax: 01243 544662, ISBN: 1 86126 359 7.
    While you won't get much on breeds of turkeys from this book, if you're into raising them for meat there's lots of good management advice, and in spite of the lack of breed info, there's also a chapter on preparing them for exhibition. The chapter on ailments is also quite comprehensive. And there's a section on artificial insemination.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Turkeys at Home by Michael Roberts, 1994, 58 pp. Available from Gold Cockerel Books, Domestic Fowl Research, Kennerleigh, Nr. Crediton, Devon, EX17 4RS, England, ISBN: 0 947870 06 7.
    Chapters on nutrition, housling, hatching, rearing, slaughter, exhibition and varieties (in the UK). There is also a chapter on marketing regulations in the UK.

  • Wild Turkeys: Hunting and Watching by John J. Mettler, Jr., 1998, 167 pp., Storey Publishing, ISBN: 1-58017-069-2.
    Topics include chapters on the history of the wild turkey and its reintroduction to various areas, habitat, life history, several aspects of hunting them, and recipes. Not a great book, but it's OK.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Old book: Turkey Management by Stanley J. Marsden & J. Holmes Martin, 1955, 6th edition, 999 pp., Interstate Printers & Publishers, Inc.
    If you're raising more than a few turkeys and you can find this book, there's a lot of good info tucked away in it as well as descriptions of the various varieties that were known in the mid-20th century.

    Domestic waterfowl

  • Ducks & Geese in your Backyard by Rick & Gail Luttmann,1978, 273 pp., Rodale Press, ISBN 0-87857-224-4.
    Another great beginner's guide by the Luttmanns. Includes illustrations and instructions on vent-sexing geese.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Storey's Guide to Raising Ducks: Breeds - Health - Care by Dave Holderread, 2011 (2nd edition!!), 356 pp., Storey Books, ISBN: 1-58017-258-X.
    This second edition is an updated version of an already excellent work on kinds of ducks and their raising, by the owner of Holderread's Waterfowl Farm and Preservation Center. An authority on waterfowl, he knows his ducks. There are accounts of all the common and many rare breeds, plus chapters on rearing, maintaining, incubating, showing and butchering ducks. A great plus is the large chapter on duck colors and genetics. Includes illustrations and instructions for vent-sexing ducklings.
    Order this book now from amazon. com.

  • The Domestic Duck by Chris and Mike Ashton, 2001, 192 pp., Crowood Press, ISBN: 1 86126 402 X.
    A British book with extensive discussion of many breeds of duck (although for some reason they completely ignore the Muscovy). There are chapters on behavior and physiology, purchasing ducks and managing and breeding them, as well as a great chapter on eggs and incubation and another on rearing ducklings (including pictures and info on vent-sexing). There is also an appendix on diseases and health care. All in all, an excellent book for those interested in ducks (except Muscovies).
    Order this book now from amazon. com.

  • Raising the Home Duck Flock by Dave Holderread, 1978, 178 pp., Garden Way Publishing, ISBN: 0-88266-169-8.
    Another excellent work on types of ducks and their raising by Dave Holderread. Includes illustrations and instructions for vent-sexing ducklings.
    Order this book now from amazon. com.

  • Keeping Ducks and Geese by Chris & Mike Ashton, 2009, 128 pp., David & Charles, ISBN: 0-7153-3157-4.
    An excellent introduction to waterfowl keeping, with chapters on getting started, the various breeds, rearing and general care.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • For the Love of Ducks by Nyiri Murtagh, 2000, 154 pp. Bolwarrah Press, ISBN: 0 9585590 3 1.
    This Australian book is a handy guide to the keeping of ducks. There's a couple pages on each of the breeds in the Australian standard, and good info on duck behavior, housing and management. It includes illustrations and instructions on how to vent sex ducks.

  • Duck by Victoria de Rijke, 2008, 191 pp., Reaktion Books Ltd., ISBN: 1861893507.
    This very nice book from the UK covers the Natural History of ducks (tho' I take exception to it calling a Mandarin a large duck), discusses both the hunting of wild ducks and the domestication of the duck, has a chapter on the quack, which covers both the sounds of various ducks and the use of duck related terminology in various languages. There is also a chapter on toy ducks and much information on ducks in art and history. Very well illustrated. A definite must for the duck-centric.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Ducks, Geese and Turkeys for Anyone by Victoria Roberts, 2002, 128 pp. (ducks & geese through p. 95), Whittet Books. Available from Diamond Farm Book Publishers, ISBN: 1 873580 53 3.
    This sounds like a book on keeping birds, but although it has a small chapter on that it is mainly a book with descriptions and photographs of the various breeds and varieties kept in the UK.

  • Ducks and Geese at Home by Michael Roberts, 1991, 55 pp. Available from Gold Cockerel Books, Domestic Fowl Research, Kennerleigh, Nr. Crediton, Devon, EX17 4RS, England, ISBN: 0 947870 09 1.
    Good little book on keeping waterfowl. Covers management, raising, exhibiting, diseases and breeds.

  • Backyard Ducks and Geese: A Practical Guide for the Enthusiast and the Smallholder by J. C. Jeremy Hobson, 2009, 144 pp., The Crowood Press, ISBN: 1847971326.
    A nice little book with sections on choosing your breed(s), housing, feeding, breeding, raising the young, health issues, exhibition, and a final section on ornamental waterfowl and ponds.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • The Illustrated Guide to Ducks and Geese and Other Domestic Fowl [except chickens] by Celia Lewis, 2012, 160 pp., Bloomsbury USA, ISBN: 1608199754.
    The pictures are all watercolors, not wonderfully accurate but nice. There's some good info on many breeds.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Domestic Duck and Geese in Colour by Michael Roberts, 1994, 54 pp. Available from Gold Cockerel Books, Domestic Fowl Research, Kennerleigh, Nr. Crediton, Devon, EX17 4RS, England, ISBN: 0 947870 03 2.
    Great color photos and a bit of information on 23 breeds of duck and 13 geese recognized in the UK.

  • The Book of Geese by Dave Holderread, 1993, 209 pp., The Hen House, PO Box 492, Corvallis, OR 97339, ISBN: 0-931342-02-3.
    Another very good book by the author of Raising the Home Duck Flock. He also knows his geese! Also includes illustrations and instructions on vent-sexing geese.
    I would suggest ordering this directly from Holderread's Waterfowl Farm and Preservation Center, PO Box 492, Corvallis, OR 97339; 541-929-5338. You'll get it much quicker;
    or
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Domestic Geese by Chris Ashton, 1999, 192 pp., Crowood Press, ISBN: 1 86126 271 X.
    A great new British book on geese. Has lots of information on the history of goose domestication, followed by lengthy section with everything you want to know about many breeds of geese. There's chapters on why keep them, exhibition, management, breeding and maintenance. The chapters on incubation and rearing are very detailed. Includes illustrations and instructions on vent-sexing geese. There's also a nice appendix on diseases and what to do about them. Some color photos and lots of B&W. This one definitely gets a recommendation from me!
    Order this book now from amazon. com.

  • Keeping Domestic Geese by Barbara Soames, 1980, 159 pp., Blandford Press, ISBN: 0 7137 1070 5.
    More in-depth info on keeping geese. An excellent book.
    Order this book now from amazon. com.

  • Ducks and Geese: A Guide to Management by Tom Bartlett, 1986, 110 pp., Crowood Press, ISBN: 1 85223 650 7.
    This is a reprint (1998) of a nice smaller volume by one of the foremost British waterfowl breeders. There are sections on the keeping of both ducks and geese, short accounts (with B&W photos) of many breeds, and even a chapter on showing. The last major section is a seasonal review of maintenance.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Colour Breeding in Domestic Ducks by Mike and Chris Ashton, 2007, 48 pp., Welshpool Printing Group, available from www.ashtonwaterfowl.net, ISBN: 978-0-9555642-0-8.
    If you want to know about breeding and the genetics of the Mallard-derived domestic ducks, this book is a must for your library!

  • Call & Other Bantam Ducks by Anne Terrell, Ian Kay and Chris Ashton, 1998, 167 pp., Scribblers Publishing Limited, The Watermill, Southwell Road, Kirklington, Nottinghamshire NG22 8NQ, England, ISBN: 1-871644-05-4.
    A nice little book that discusses the keeping, raising and breeding of the bantam ducks. It also describes the varieties kept in the UK.

  • The Indian Runner Duck: A Historical Guide by C. & M. Ashton, 2002, 202 pp., Feathered World, ISBN: 0907769330.
    The history of the Runner Duck in the fancy, including the British Standard for them.
    Available from The Indian Runner Duck Association: runnerducks@hotmail.com.

  • The New Duck Handbook by Heinz-Sigurd Raethel, 1989, 96 pp., Barron's Educational Series, ISBN: 0-8120-4088-0.
    A translation of the German book Enten. This book covers both domestic ducks and ornamentals. Concise chapters on buying, housing, diet, care, disease, raising, and commercial aspects of duck keeping, plus a nice chapter on duck behavior and a description of some domestic breeds (a few only known to German readers) and some of the easier-to-maintain ornamentals.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Taking Stock of Waterfowl by Marjorie E. F. Bender, D. Philip Sponenberg & Donald E. Bixby, 2000, 21 pp., The American Livestock Breeds Conservancy, ISBN: 1-887316-04-3.
    This large pamphlet discusses the status of the domestic breeds of waterfowl in the US. It includes a list of hatcheries and breeders and their stock.

  • Backyard Poultry -- Naturally by Alanna Moore, 1998, 154 pp. Bolwarrah Press, ISBN: 0 9585590 1 5.
    This is a very nice Australian book. Nice clear info on maintaining chickens and ducks, including pictures and some information on various breeds. It accents "natural" raising, including discussing natural diets and homeopathic and natural remedies. There is an interesting chapter on permaculture -- the raising of fowl in a sort of natural woodland-type area, with plantings of natural feeds. It also has a nice little section on maintaining natural duck ponds.

    Pond Construction and Landscaping

  • Earth Ponds: The Country Pond Maker's Guide to Building, Maintenance and Restoration by Tim Matson, 2nd edition, 1991, 150 pp., Countryman Press, ISBN: 0-88150-155-7.
    Lots of information on how to build a pond and the problems in dealing with it. This book is concentrating on large ponds, not garden ponds, so it is more relevant than many to waterfowl keepers' needs. However, you do need to know that the author does not concern himself with building ponds for the benefit of waterfowl so does not deal with the particular problems that poultry keepers need to be concerned with. On the basics of constructing the pond itself, however, it is quite a useful endeavor. Perhaps in the next edition, he'll deal with our problems, such as keeping ducks from destroying the banks of a clay pond.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Earth Ponds Sourcebook: The Pond Owner's Manual and Resource Guide by Tim Matson, 1997, 171 pp., Countryman Press, ISBN: 0-88150-358-4.
    Companion volume to the above, it still doesn't deal with waterfowl keeping, but adds more info to pond building and maintenance.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Waterscaping: Plants and Ideas for Natural and Created Water Gardens by Judy Glattstein, 1994, 184 pp., Storey Books, ISBN: 0-88266-606-1.
    Just what it sounds like, this one will be handy if you've only a few ducks but if you've got a lot of waterfowl they'll probably just eat the plants. It discusses lots of different plants and what kind of settings they like.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Grasses: Versatile Partners for Uncommon Garden Design by Nancy J. Ondra, 2002, 143 pp., Storey Books, ISBN: 1-58017-423-X.
    For adding accents to large yards, you can't beat some of the exotic grasses, and I've found that some of them can tolerate a lot of waterfowl presence once they're established. This very nice book introduces many grasses, with pictures and info on growth and habitat preferences.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • There are some wonderful waterfowl posters available from the artist Monte Dolack. I love 'em!

    Waterfowl magazines

  • International Waterfowl Breeders, available from Briget Kane, Rt.2, Box 241, Keyser, WV 26726 ($8/year).

  • National Call Breeders of America, available from Claude McAllister, 7823 Masonboro Sound Rd., Wilmington, NC 28409 ($10/year).

    Wildfowl & Gamebirds

  • Game Bird Breeders and Conservationists' GAZETTE, available from: Allen Publishing, 1165 East 4780 South, Salt Lake City, UT 84117, USA. e-mail: allenpub@aol.com.
    Pictures and information on raising and marketing game birds and waterfowl including quail, pheasants, peacocks, pigeons, doves, ducks and others. Many birds and eggs listed for sale in each issue of the magazine.

  • APWS Magazine, available from: American Pheasant and Waterfowl Society, W2270 US Hwy 10, Granton, WI 54436, USA.

  • A Guide to . . . Pheasants & Waterfowl: Their Management, Care & Breeding by Danny Brown, 1998, 248 pp., ABK Publications, ISBN: 0958710236.
    A very well done book which covers all the species available to aviculturalists in Australia. Nice chapter on hosing, including ponds, plus chapters on reproduction (including sexing of waterfowl), compatibility of species, flight restriction, nutrition, and diseases. A nice addition is the section on administering medications. This is followed by species accounts for 27 species of waterfowl and 13 pheasants. Each species account has nice color photographs and general information on the biology of the species, plus sections on captive maintenance. I would recommend this book to wildfowl lovers around the world, as the information is very nice although necessarily limited to species available in Australia. The only major fault I found with it is the lack of an index.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Waterfowl: Care, Breeding and Conservation by Simon Tarsnane, 1996, 277 pp., Hancock House Publishers, ISBN: 0-88839-391-1.
    I would recommend this book to anyone interested in raising wild waterfowl. It discusses all aspects of maintenance, including ponds, pens, diet, nesting, rearing, and diseases. This is followed by short chapters on each of the main groups of wildfowl. An additional bonus are the wonderful color photographs of many species and aviaries by Frank Todd.
    Order this book now from amazon. com.

  • Wildfowl at Home: A Beginner's Guide to Keeping and Breeding Ornamental Waterfowl by Alan Birkbeck, 1991, 64 pp. Available from Gold Cockerel Books, Domestic Fowl Research, Kennerleigh, Nr. Crediton, Devon, EX17 4RS, England., ISBN: 0 947870 08 03.
    I would most definitely recommend this inexpensive little book for a short, concise account of how to maintain wild waterfowl. Good info on ponds, easy keepers, feeding, health, landscaping, and rearing.
    Published in the UK, in the US it is available from Cutler's Pheasant Supply. Tell 'em you were sent from FeatherSite!

  • Handbook of Waterfowl Identification by Frank S. Todd, 1997, 104 pp., Ibis Publishing Co., ISBN: 0-934797-14-5.
    For a quick field guide to all the wildfowl of the world, you can't beat this one. It is a companion volume to Todd's 1996 Natural History of the Waterfowl. It includes illustrations, a brief description, and a range map for each species.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Waterfowl: An Identification Guide to the Ducks, Geese and Swans of the World by Steve Madge and Hilary Burn, 1988, 298 pp., Houghton Mifflin Company, ISBN: 0-395-46726-8.
    I've been using this book to ID waterfowl for years, and just realized I had never listed it. The color plates with illustrations of all species include range maps for each. Each species account includes sections on field identification, voice, description, bare parts, measurements, geographical variation, habits, habitat, distribution, and population. In my opinion a very handy reference tool.
    Order this book now from amazon. com.

  • Swan Keeper's Handbook: A Guide to the Care of Captive Swans by Geoffrey R. Gardner, Fanchon F. Funk, Sheila A. Bolin, Rebecca Webb Wilson and Shirley A. Bolin, 2003, 135 pp., Krieger Publishing Co., ISBN: 1-57524-199-4.
    Excellent coverage of the Mute Swan, with short chapters on the other species. Covers maintenance, breeding, rearing, veterinary problems, and landscaping for swan habitats.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Swan Breeding and Management by Loyl Stromberg, 1986, 95 pp., Stromberg Publishing Co., Pine River, MN 56474, ISBN: 0-915780-06-2.
    I don't generally like or recommend Stromberg's books. They have no indexes, are poorly organized, and very anecdotal. But there's really very little out there on swan keeping and this one is worth it to me, if only for the various types of swan feeders it shows.
    Since amazon.com doesn't carry it, you can get it from Cutler's Pheasant Supply. Tell 'em you were sent from FeatherSite!

  • Swans by Dafila Scott, 1995, 72pp., Voyageur Press, ISBN: 0-89658-320-1.
    Beautiful photographs! Basic biology of all the species of swans by the daughter of Peter Scott, the well-known ornithologist and conservationist.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Swan by Peter Young, 2008, 200 pp., Reaktion Books Ltd., ISBN: 1861893493.
    This book from the UK covers the natural history of all the swan species. From there it moves to their appearance in art and music and human history. There are also chapters on the use of swans as food, swan conservation and the use of the image of the swan in advertising. Very well illustrated.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

    For books on pond construction see under Domestic Waterfowl above

    Pheasants, Quail and Grouse

  • Introduction to Ornamental Pheasants by K. C. R. Howman, 1996, 122 pp., Hancock House Publishers, ISBN: 0-88839-381-4.
    This is an excellent work for those new to pheasants, and a good shelf reference for those with more experience. There are chapters on aviaries, management, feeding and breeding, plus a section which gives the basics on the various species of pheasants. Includes nice color photos of many of the mentioned species.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Pheasants of the World: Their Breeding and Management by Keith Howman, 1993, 184 pp., Hancock House Publishers, ISBN: 0-88839-280-X.
    If you're really into pheasants, this 184pp., 8x12" volume is a "must have"! Gorgeous photos and many of them. Howman starts out talking about the conservation of pheasants. From there he goes on to aviary construction (with many photos), general management, feeding, and breeding. Following this are species accounts, one on each pheasant and there are great photos of each species. If it wasn't so full of information I'd still want it as a coffee table book, if only for the series of photos of the display of a Temminck's Tragopan cock!
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • The Pheasants of the World: Biology and Natural History (second edition) by Paul A. Johnsgard, 1999, 398 pp., Smithsonian Institution Press, ISBN: 1-56098-839-8.
    For those truly into their pheasants, this would be an ideal companion volume to the Howman book just mentioned. The first part of the book covers the comparative biology of the pheasants, including growth, social behavior, ecology, mating, and reproductive biology. There's also a chapter on aviculture and conservation. Following this are taxonomic keys and species accounts. The species accounts include, among other things, distribution, size, identification, ecology, behavior, and reproductive biology. There are many nice B&W drawings of displays and a photograph (or in some cases a painting) of each species. Johnsgard has done a nice job of compiling the literature on these birds.
    Order this book now from amazon. com.

  • Ornamental Pheasants for Beginners, by Robert Deeley, 2007, 118 pp., Gold Cockerel Books, ISBN: 0947870512.
    Photos and a short description of most species of pheasant. A very concise guide to maintaining and breeding them follows and includes plans for building aviaries and a nice section on using broodies to raise pheasant chicks.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Pheasants, Partridges, & Grouse: A Guide to the Pheasants, Partridges, Quails, Grouse, Guineafowl, Buttonquails, and Sandgrouse of the World by Steve Madge and Phil McGowan, 2002, 488 pp., Princeton University Press, ISBN: 0-691-08908-6.
    The title says it all! In each species account there are sections on identification, description, geographical variation, measurements, habitat, voice, habits, breeding, distribution, and status. There are also plates with color paintings and range maps for each species, and although the illustrations of the birds are not the best I've ever seen, they will do for identification purposes.
    Order this book now from amazon. com.

  • Coffee Table Book: Extraordinary Pheasants by Stephen Green-Armytage, 2002, 112 pp., Harry N. Abrams, Inc., ISBN: 0-8109-1007-1.
    This is a beautiful coffee table book from Green-Armytage, with lovely photos of many species of pheasants. It includes a large number of photos of the plumage of various color mutations of Peafowl as well as many close-ups of feather patterns on various pheasants.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • All about Ruffed Pheasants: Lady Amherst's and Golden Pheasants, by Leland B. Hayes is available as a CD.

  • Game Bird Breeders Handbook by Allen Woodard, Pran Vohra & Vern Denton, 1993, 493 pp., Hancock House Publishers, ISBN: 0-88839-311-3.
    If you're production raising pheasants, partridge, Bobwhites or Coturnix, you would want to have this volume on your reference shelf. Covers most aspects of game bird farming and has a chapter on ornamental pheasants. Also has some color plates of the various species and a nice color series of photos of the daily stages of development of an egg/embryo.
    Order this book now from amazon. com.

  • Quail, Past & Present: Coturnix Quail, Their History and Management for Hobby and Profit by Michael Roberts, 1999, 87 pp. Available from Gold Cockerel Books, Domestic Fowl Research, Kennerleigh, Nr. Crediton, Devon, EX17 4RS, England.
    Exactly what it claims to be.

  • Practical Quail-keeping by Sarah & Martin Barratt, 2013, 112 pp., The Crowood Press, ISBN: 1847974635.
    If you want to raise quail, here's the guide for you. Covers everything from getting them to breeding them to putting them on the table.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • A Closer Look at "Button Quail": The Care and Breeding of Chinese Blue-Breasted Quail by Jodi McDonald, 2010, 276 pp., privately published by Bracken Ridge Ranch, ISBN: 1615844562.
    Finally there's a book available for those keeping Button Quail. It includes chapters on natural history, housing, nutrition, breeding, health care and more.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • The Chinese Painted Quail -- "The Button Quail": Their Breeding and Care, by Leland B. Hayes is available as a CD.
    It is also available in book form: Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • All about the Desert Quails: Gambel's, California, Scaled and Mearns', by Leland B. Hayes is available as a CD.

  • Living with Gambel's Quail, by Leland B. Hayes is available as a CD.

  • Archives of Leland Hayes's free Gamebird ezines, by Leland B. Hayes available at http://lelandhayes.com/ezines/index.html.

    Peafowl

  • Peafowl Today, official publication of the United Peafowl Association, P.O. Box 24, Klingerstown, PA 17941.

  • Peafowl: Their Conservation, Breeding and Management by T. P. Gardiner, 1996, World Pheasant Association.
    Very nice book. Lots of up-to-date information.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Peacocks Past & Present, by Michael Roberts, 2003, 62 pp., Gold Cockerel Books, ISBN: 0947870415.
    History, folklore and how to keep them, all in one place!
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Peacocks and Peahens by Joan Kalbacken, 1994, Childrens Press, ISBN: 0-516-01070-0.
    A juvenile book, but very good! Almost everything in it is correct. A good book for beginners with peafowl, and even those more experienced will enjoy having it in their libraries.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • A Peacock on the Lawn by Sue Carpenter & Francine Raymond, 2004, 31 pp., A Kitchen Garden Book, ISBN: 0-9532857-6-6.
    A concise small booklet on keeping peafowl.

  • Peacock by Christine E. Jackson, 2006, 192 pp., Reaktion Books Ltd., ISBN: 1861892934.
    This book is a must for the library of Peafowl keepers. In addition to discussing the natural history of various peafowl, it has chapters on their effects in history and art, including a chapter on the way Blue Indias were introduced throughout the West and another on the Green Peafowl in the art and culture of the East. Very well illustrated.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • The Peafowl of the World by Josef Bergmann, 1980, Saiga Publishing Co., ISBN: 0904558 51 7.
    5 Chapters: History, General Description, Different Species, Management, Peafowl in Art.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Keeping Peafowl by James Blake, 1990, Nimrod Press, ISBN: 1-85259-069-6.
    Chapters on Feeding, Anatomy, Housing and Breeding. I know it exists, I have it, but the ISBN in my copy for some reason brings up a book on falconry. Go figure!
    Published in the UK, in the US it is available from Cutler's Pheasant Supply. Tell 'em you were sent from FeatherSite!

  • The books The Wacky World of Peafowl (volumes I & II) are available from the Peafowl Information Center.

  • "Junglefowl, Spur Fowl and Peafowl of the World" (approximate title) by James G. Suthard, 1964.
    I've seen references to this one, but haven't found it yet--if you know where I can get a copy, please get in touch with me.

  • See also the major books on pheasants, listed above.

    Ratites

  • Ratite Management, Medicine, and Surgery by Thomas N. Tully, Jr., & Simon M. Shane, eds., 1996, 188 pp., Krieger Publishing Company, ISBN: 0-89464-874-8.
    This is a highly technical volume, for those heavily into the keeping of Ratites. Sample chapters include Ratite Nutrition, Restraint and Handling of the Emu, Anesthesiology of Ratites, Reproduction, Parasites of Ratites and Developmental Problems in Young Ratites.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

    Pigeons

    The first are two classics in the pigeon fancy:

  • The Book of the Pigeon by Carl A. Naether, 1958, 245 pp., David McKay Co., Inc., NY.

  • The Pigeon by Wendell Mitchell Levi, 1941, 512 pp., R. L. Bryan Co., Columbia, SC.

  • Pigeons: The Fascinating Saga of the World's Most Revered and Reviled Bird by Andrew D. Blechman, 2006, 244 pp., Grove Press, ISBN: 0-8021-4328-8.
    Do you want to know about the history of the pigeon? Pigeon racing? Squab raising? Keeping the darn things off your windows? It's all here. A real cross-section of the pigeon.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Pigeon by Barbara Allen, 2009, 237 pp., Reaktion Books Ltd., ISBN: 1861895135.
    Lots of various information for you here! Is it a pigeon or a dove? Their natural history, how they appear in religion and mythology, their use in medicine and the market place, a whole section on pigeons as messengers and another on their appearance in art. There is also a section that discusses the various extinct species and pigeon conservation. Very well illustrated.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Pigeons, Doves & Dovecotes, by M. D. L. Roberts & V. E. Gale, 2000, 84 pp., Gold Cockerel Books, ISBN: 0947870318.
    Many breed photos, how to keep them and quite a bit on housing.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • A Guide to . . . Pigeons, Doves & Quail: Their Management, Care & Breeding by Danny Brown, 1995, 184 pp., Australian Birdkeeper, ISBN: 0646230581.
    A very nice Australian publication with chapters on housing, including types of aviaries, feeding, handling, reproduction and diseases. There are also species accounts, with nice color photos, for 31 pigeons and doves and 11 species of quail. The lack of an index is a negative feature, but if you know the common name of the species you may find it through the table of contents.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Pigeons for Pleasure and Profit: A Complete Guide to Pigeon Raising by Charles Foy and Clair Hetland, nd, 64 pp. pamphlet, Foy's Pigeon Supplies, POB 27166, Golden Valley, MN 55427.
    A concise quick-start pamphlet.

  • A Guide to Raising Healthy Pigeons.
    This is a CD of interviews with a major pigeon fancier (in mp3 format).

  • Coffee Table Book: Extraordinary Pigeons by Stephen Green-Armytage, 2003, 112 pp., Harry N. Abrams, Inc., ISBN: 0-8109-4630-0.
    Another beautiful coffee table book from Green-Armytage, with lovely photos and little text on many exotic breeds of domestic pigeons and also many photos of wild species. True eye candy!
    Order this book now from amazon.com.

  • Just for Fun: The Wonderful World of Pigeons Coloring Book by The National Pigeon Association, 2010, 49 pp., The National Pigeon Association, 1717 SE 43RD TER, Topeka, KS 66609.
    Various breeds for you to fill in, with some information about each breed. A fun way for beginners to learn about pigeons.

    Book sources

    Here's amazon.com where you can search for poultry-related books among many other subjects.

    A house that has some quality publications in the avicultural area is Hancock House Publishers.

    Broad Leys Publishing produces books on Poultry and Smallholding. The World Bantam & Poultry Society, which seems to be another name for the Batty Publishing Company, also sells various old and new books on fowl.

    When John Norris retired from the Rare and Out-of-Print poultry book business, he sold the remainder of his stock to Veronica Mayhew in England. She is now (so far as I know) the only dedicated poultry book dealer. You can contact her at Trewena, Behoes Lane, Woodcote, Nr. Reading, RG8 0PP, England. Telephone: Checkendon (01491) 680743

    I've found another dealer of old poultry books: Barry Thomas, Antiquarian, Out-of-Print & New Poultry Books, 6 Diana Rd., Llandeilo, Carmarthenshire, Wales SA19 6RR; e-mail: barry.thomas4@tiscali.co.uk

    Leland Hayes' Gamebird Publications has books on Pheasants, Quail, and Partridges.

    Poultry NZ -- Classic poultry book reprints and more from New Zealand

    Chicken Calendars

  • OK, these are too annoying to keep updating. Just go to amazon.com and search chicken calendar with the year.


    Sheep -- I keep a couple sheep and so . . .

  • Storey's Barn Guide to Sheep edited by Deborah Burns, Sarah Guare & Dale Perkins, 2006, 93 pp., Storey Publishing, ISBN: 1-58017-849-5.
    Hang this on the barn wall (it's spiral-bound and made to be hung) -- very basic info, clearly illustrated, on everything from basic care thru lambing and castration.
    Order this book now from amazon.com.


    My personal poultry library Not for sale!!!


    Some books and/or journals for sale.



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