New Field Guide-Maps

Kondla, Norbert FOR:EX Norbert.Kondla at
Tue Jun 8 15:55:32 EDT 1999

Some observations to share about the maps in the new peterson western field
guide to butts (Canajun part, eh):

*	Figure 6 (biomes); I understand that small scale maps must
generalize but biome 6 (called Rocky Mountains on the map) is significantly
different from the geography and biogeography of western Canada and adjacent
areas.  The Alaska panhandle has nothing to do with the Rocky Mountains but
is physiographically and ecologically connected with the northwest coast to
the south and north.  In Canada the Rocky Mountains (fondly referred to as
"the rocks" by some of us locals) is actually a very narrow band. See the
range map of Polixenes Arctic and the narrow blob that runs through AB/BC
actually better portrays the location and extent of the rocks.
*	If you want to see a better overview of the terrestrial ecozones of
western Canada you can check out  .Even this
mapping is necessarily general for the physiographically and ecologically
complex province of British Columbia so if you want more detail for that
area you can dial up
*	Ignore that line that runs north from the Saskatchewan/Manitoba
border.  It is not a geopolitical boundary like the other lines.  Seems to
be a partial separation of the three old territories that once upon a time
comprised the Northwest Territories.
*	Seems to be at least two base maps used in the book.  Places like
Kodiak Island, Melville Island and somerset island seem to appear and
disappear depending on the map one is looking at. One of the base maps has
some interesting boundaries that don't match official gov't maps.
*	On the range maps, the blue coloring is defined as "appears as a
stray or colonize and become a temporary resident". This is really not
believable for the Canadian range of Limenitis arthemis and Pyrgus communis.
*	Lycaena dorcas does not fly over the salty water of Hudson Bay and
James Bay; Erebia theano does not fly on Vancouver Island
*	text and maps could stand to be editted for congruence before the
second printing, eg. text says E. theano occurs in Washington state but this
does not agree with the range map; text says C. occidentalis occurs in
northern Rocky Mountains but map shows it only as far north as the central
Rocky Mountains in Montana
*	It is a challenge to convert distribution maps to range maps but for
western Canada I find that many of the range maps are highly speculative or
simply impossible in terms of ecosystem presence to sustain given species
*	The book is a vast improvement over the first peterson western field
guide in terms of having utility in western Canada but it is not there yet.
If you are planning a visit, best to use literature written with local
knowledge.  For a geographic area as large as the western part of a
continent it is not realistic to adequately describe in a few words or one
sketch what the beasties look like in differing areas and ecosystems.
*	Anyone doing a book review on this one and who is interested in the
views of a person with extensive first hand knowledge north of the 49
parallel is welcome to contact me after july 15 and I would be pleased to
share my views on items that could be improved

Norbert Kondla  P.Biol., RPBio.
Forest Ecosystem Specialist, Ministry of Environment
845 Columbia Avenue, Castlegar, British Columbia V1N 1H3
Phone 250-365-8610
Mailto:Norbert.Kondla at

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