Posted December 8, 2012.

The following is a list of books and websites that I have consulted for identifying California flora and fauna.

Alden, Peter, et al. National Audubon Society, Field Guide to California. New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1998.
Angell, Tony. Foreword by J. F. Lansdowne. Ravens, Crows, Magpies, and Jays. Seattle: University of Washington Press, 1978. Educational with personal experience stories included. Illustrated with beautiful pen-and-ink drawings by the author.
Anonymous. Local Wildflowers of Orange County. Photography by Lee Kirchhevel. Pioneer, CA: Local Birds, Inc., 2010. It's a laminated brochure.

Bellrose, Frank C. Ducks, Geese and Swans of North America. 2nd edition. Harrisburg, PA: Stackpole Books, 1976.
Birds: Their Life, Their Ways, Their World. Perrins, Christopher, and C. J. O. Harrison. Illus. Ad Cameron. Pleasantville, NY: Reader's Digest, 1979. 4th printing.
Bowler, Peter A., and David Bramlet. Vascular Plants of the University of California, Irvine Ecological Preserve. Paper, 2003(?).
Breland, Osmond P. Animal Life and Lore. New York: Harper & Row, 1963.
Brown, Vinson, and Henry G. Weston, Jr., and Jerry Buzzell. Handbook of California Birds. With a 1986 revision of the Checklist of Species, Families and Orders. 2nd rev. and enlarged ed. Happy Camp, CA: Naturegraph Publishers, 1986. Includes extra information such as flight patterns, courtship behavior, and photos of habitats. An amazing amount of information in a compact book.
Bryant, P. J. "Vascular Plants of Orange County, California."
Clarke, Herbert. An Introduction to Southern California Birds. Missoula, MT: Mountain Press, 1989. A beginner's guide with a photo of each bird and a paragraph about it.
Clarke, Oscar F., et al. Flora of the Santa Ana River and Environs: With References to World Botany. Berkeley: Heyday, 2007. A very helpful book with lots of photos.
Cornell Lab of Ornithology, Cornell University, Ithaca, New York.

Dale, Nancy. Flowering Plants: The Santa Monica Mountains, Coastal & Chaparral Regions of Southern California. Illustrations by Marianne D. Wallace. Photography by members of the California Plant Society. Santa Barbara, CA: Capra Press, 1986. The Santa Monica Mountains are the largest area of chaparral left in California (Warhol, 48).
Essig, Edward Oliver. Insects of Western North America. New York: Macmillan, 1926.
Gray, Mary Taylor. Watchable Birds of California. Photographs by Herbert Clarke. Missoula, MT: Mountain Press, 1999.

Halsey, Richard W. Fire, Chaparral, and Survival In Southern California. Rev. ed. San Diego: Sunbelt Publications, 2005. The back of the book includes 32 pages of color photos of mostly related plants.
Head, W. S. The California Chaparral: An Elfin Forest. Happy Camp, CA: Naturegraph, 1972. Summary of observations of area ranging from San Diego County to Orange County. "Elfin Forest seems to be a true English description. It encompasses the forest and its inhabitants. Most of the bushes are from three to eight feet in height. The wild flowers vary from the 'belly type' (you virtually have to lie on the ground to study their growing characteristics) to those that will rise above the four-foot level and poke their blooms up through the bush to see the sun (p. 5)."

Kavanagh, James. The Nature of California: An Introduction to Familiar Plants, Animals & Outstanding Natural Attractions. Illustrations by Raymond Leung. Introduction by James C. Rettie. Phoenix, AZ: Waterford Press, 1997, 2005. The chapter "Natural Attractions & Sanctuaries" has a listing of parks by each of the eight biodiverse regions in California.

Miller, Dr. Jacqueline Y., and Dr. Lee D. Miller. The Butterfly Handbook. London: Quarto (for Barron's), 2004.
Milne, Lorus and Margery Milne. The Audubon Society, Field Guide to North American Insects & Spiders. Lorus and Margery Milne. 6th printing. New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1989.
Mooney, Harold A. "Southern Coastal Scrub." 471-89. In Terrestrial Vegetation of California, eds. Michael G. Barbour and Jack Major. Rev. ed. 4th printing. California Plant Society, 1995.
Munz, Philip A. California Desert Wildflowers. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1962.
Munz, Philip A. California Spring Wildflowers: From the Base of the Sierra Nevada and Southern Mountains to the Sea. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1961.
Murphey, Edith Van Allen. Indian Uses of Native Plants. Mendocino County Historical Society (Ukiah, CA) reprint. Glenwood, IL: Meyerbooks, 1990. Murphey worked for ten years for U.S. Bureau of Indian Affairs identifying stock-poisoning plants fatal to native-owned cattle and sheep.

Nyerges, Christopher. Guide to Wild Foods and Useful Plants. Foreward by Ed Begley, Jr. Chicago: Chicago Review Press, 1999.
Ordnuff, Robert. Introduction to California Plant Life. Revised by Phyllis M. Faber and Todd Keeler-Wolf. California Natural History Guides No. 69. Berkeley: University Of California Press, 2003.
The Plant Book. 3rd ed. Reprint, Random House Australia, 2003.
Powell, Jerry A., and Charles L. Hogue. California Insects. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1979.
Preston-Mafham, Rod, and Ken Preston-Mafham. Spiders of the World. Reprint, New York: Blandford Press, 1988.

Quinn, Ronald D., and Sterling C. Keeley. Introduction to California Chaparral. Illustrated by Marianne D. Wallace. California Natural History Guide Series No. 90. Berkeley: University of California Press, 2006.
Radtke, Klaus. A Homeowner's Guide to Fire and Watershed Management at the Chaparral/Urban Interface. Rev. ed. 4th printing. Los Angeles: County of Los Angeles, 1990.
Ricciuti, Edward R. Chaparral. New York: Marshall Cavendish, Benchmark Books, 1996. (children's book)

Spellenberg, Richard. The Audubon Society Field Guide to North American Wildflowers: Western Region. 4th printing, 1985. New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1979.
Stocking, Stephen K., and Jack A. Rockwell. Wildflowers of Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks. Three Rivers, CA: Sequoia Natural History Assoc., 1969.
Stuart, John D., and John O. Sawyer. Trees and Shrubs of California. Illustrations by Andrea J. Pickart. Berkeley: Univ. of Calif. Press, 2001.

Taylor, Ronald J. Sagebrush Country: A Wildflower Sanctuary. Missoula, MT: Mountain Press, 1992. The sagebrush country he describes is an area east of the Sierra Nevada.
Thomas, Barry. Life in the Chaparral: A Naturalist's Guide to the Natural History of the Santa Ana Mountains of Southern California. Anaheim, CA: Wildlife and You, 1981(?).
Tilford, Gregory L. Edible and Medicinal Plants of the West. Foreword by Michael Moore. 5th printing, August 2001. Missoula, MT: Mountain Press, 1997.
Tocci, Salvatore. The Chaparral: Life on the Scrubby Coast. New York: Scholastic Inc., Franklin Watts, 2004. (children's book)
Tull, Delena. A Practical Guide to Edible & Useful Plants: Including Recipes, Harmful Plants, Natural Dyes & Textile Fibers. Austin, TX: Texas Monthly Press, 1987. Densely packed with a lot of useful historical and practical information.

Warhol, Tom. Chaparral and Scrub. Earth's Biomes series. Tarrytown, NY: Marshall Cavendish Benchmark, 2007. (children's book)
Williams, Cecil S. Honker: A Discussion of the Habits and Needs of the Largest of Our Canada Geese. Princeton, N.J.: D. Van Nostrand, 1967.
Williams, John C., and Howard C. Monroe. A Field Guide to the Natural History of the San Francisco Peninsula. Berkeley: MrCutrchan Publishing, 1967.

Calflora: "Information on wild California plants for conservation, education, and appreciation."
Las Pilitas Nursery: Coastal Sage Scrub
The Living Desert botanical gardens and conservation center, Palm Desert, CA

San Diego Natural History Museum: Field Guide for the Californias
What's That Bug? fun site
Wildflowers and Other Plants of Southern California. Photographs by Michael L. Charters.