On the one hand I’m sad this book is no longer a workable app. On the other hand it is a very fine book and the most recent edition has some great improvements.
I’ve joked before that new editions of field guides can be a bit of a scam since sometimes it’s mostly a taxonomy change or just a few rare bird illustration updates. But I grabbed an old second edition National Geographic from my office to do some comparisons. You can use this to see if you need to get an updated copy. I had a first edition and second edition when I was a kid. I will always have a fondness for these guides. One thing I really like is that the guide gives several options to try an locate a species quickly.
Species-wise there are quite a few additions. I think the second edition has over 800 species. The seventh has 1023 and it’s organized by the American Ornithological Society’s taxonomy structure. About 3500 illustrations have been updated (new additions and diagnostic field marks are added. Maps have also been updated by Paul Lehman and even include some migratory routes. The back of the guide includes a list of extinct birds (Carolina parakeet) or wild card ABA Code 5 rarities that have shown up in the last five years (Amazon kingfisher). I find it interesting that Carolina Parakeet and Bachman’s warbler are in this list but the ivory-billed woodpecker still shares a page with the pileated woodpecker. Hope springs eternal.
It’s an excellent field guide to have in your collection. If you have fourth edition or older I would definitely consider upgrading to this copy. And with holidays around the corner, it’s a good gift idea.