How did cranes come to symbolize matrimonial happiness? Why were magpies the only creatures that would not go inside Noah's Ark? Birds and bird imagery are integral parts of our language and culture. With her remarkable ability to dig up curious and captivating facts, Diana Wells hatches a treat for active birders and armchair enthusiasts alike. Meet the intrepid adventurers and naturalists who risked their lives to describe and name new birds. Learn the mythical stories of the gods and goddess associated with bird names. Explore the avian emblems used by our greatest writers--from Coleridge's albatross in "The Ancient Mariner" to Poe's raven.A sampling of the bird lore you'll find inside: Benjamin Franklin didn't want the bald eagle on our National Seal because of its "bad moral character," (it steals from other birds); he lobbied for the turkey instead. Chaffinches, whose Latin name means "unmarried," are called "bachelor birds" because they congregate in flocks of one gender. Since mockingbirds mimic speech, some Native American tribes fed mockingbird hearts to their children, believing it helped them learn language. A group of starlings is called a murmuration because they chatter so when they roost in the thousands. Organized alphabetically, each of these bird tales is accompanied by a two-color line drawing. Dip into 100 Birds and you'll never look at a sparrow, an ostrich, or a wren in quite the same way.
What is the fastest-growing outdoor activity in the U.S.? Snowboarding? Mountain biking? No. It's bird watching There are currently 51.3 million dedicated birders in the U.S. with their binoculars focused on the skies. Sure to appeal to this growing flock, 100 Birds to See Before You Die is the ultimate birdwatcher's book.
- Selected by two world-renowned birding authors, the top 100 birds include avian species that are endangered, exceptional common species, and others that have achieved legendary status.
- You won't need binoculars to spot the huge and powerful, endangered Philippine Eagle or the brightly plumed Andean Cock-of-the-Rock. Each of the 100 featured species is captured in remarkable full-color photographs in their natural habitat.
- This fascinating book combines hard-working detail with more unusual facts and mythological anecdotes, making it much more than a typical bird watching book.
- Detailed entries describe the natural history of each bird, including size, distribution, habitat, classification, population and conservation status.
Adaptive Strategies and Population Ecology of Northern Grouse was first published in 1988. Minnesota Archive Editions uses digital technology to make long-unavailable books once again accessible, and are published unaltered from the original University of Minnesota Press editions.
This book is at once a major reference to the species of grouse that inhabit North America and the Holarctic and a synthesis of all the available data on their ecology, sociobiology, population dynamics, and management. The book undertakes to answer two long-standing questions in population ecology: what actually regulates the numbers within a population, and what are the breeding and survival strategies evolved in this northern environment? For Volume I, editors Arthur T. Bergerud and Michael W. Gratson have drawn together their own work and that of colleagues in North America, Iceland, and Norway-in all, eleven research studies, averaging six years' duration, on eight species of grouse. These studies deal with the blue and ruffed grouse of the forest habitat; the sharp-tailed grouse, prairie chicken, and sage grouse of the prairie or steppe; and the white-tailed, rick, and willow ptarmigan found in alpine and arctic tundras. The authors describe the rich repertoire of behavior patterns developed by the hen and the cock to achieve their two primary objectives-first, to stay alive, and then to breed. Volume II, primarily the work of Bergerud, synthesizes the evidence in Volume I and in the grouse research literature from a theoretical perspective. Several potentially controversial sociobiological hypotheses are advanced to account for flocking behavior, migration, dispersal, roosting and feeding behavior, mate choice and mating systems. The demographic analysis provides new insights into cycles of abundance, the limitation of numbers, and the demographic factors that determine densities. The contributors, besides Bergerud and Gratson: R.C. Davies, A. Gardarson, J.E. Hartzler, R.A. Huempfner, D.A. Jenni, D.H. Mossop, S. Myrberget, R.E. Page, R.K. Schmidt, W.D. Svedarsky, and J.R. Tester.
Can a parrot understand complex concepts and mean what it says? Since the early 1900s, most studies on animal-human communication have focused on great apes and a few cetacean species. Birds were rarely used in similar studies on the grounds that they were merely talented mimics--that they were, after all, "birdbrains." Experiments performed primarily on pigeons in Skinner boxes demonstrated capacities inferior to those of mammals; these results were thought to reflect the capacities of all birds, despite evidence suggesting that species such as jays, crows, and parrots might be capable of more impressive cognitive feats.
Twenty years ago Irene Pepperberg set out to discover whether the results of the pigeon studies necessarily meant that other birds--particularly the large-brained, highly social parrots--were incapable of mastering complex cognitive concepts and the rudiments of referential speech. Her investigation and the bird at its center--a male Grey parrot named Alex--have since become almost as well known as their primate equivalents and no less a subject of fierce debate in the field of animal cognition. This book represents the long-awaited synthesis of the studies constituting one of the landmark experiments in modern comparative psychology.
Colorful, musical, graceful, easily observed--birds have always fascinated amateur and professional naturalists alike. This richly illustrated book tells the fascinating story of ornithology from ancient times to the present. Filled throughout with paintings, drawings, photographs, and diagrams, many of them in brilliant color, All about Birds is a fast-paced chronological account of the personalities and milestones that have shaped this most popular of sciences--from Aristotle, Audubon, and Darwin to Peterson and Sibley. These key figures and events are also documented in a unique twenty-page illustrated color timeline at the end of the book. Brief individual chapters cover antiquity, the Middle Ages, the Renaissance, and the seventeenth through twentieth centuries. With its beautiful design and illustrations, and its concise and informative text, this lively book will delight anyone who loves birds.
- A clear and concise chronological account, from antiquity to the present
- Richly illustrated throughout with some 250 images, many of them in color
- Unique 20-page illustrated color timeline documents key figures and events
The personal narratives and essays of the late naturalist record his adventures over the course of a lifetime of birding and his experiences traveling the world to observe and record the natural world, in a collection enhanced by Peterson's own photographs. Reprint.
Hummingbirds Are Wondrous and Beautiful. Watching Them in Action Is Almost Magical.
Professional naturalist and wildlife photographer Stan Tekiela adores them, and this adoration led him to spend more than 10 years traveling across the United States to observe and photograph the various species. Here, he has documented every aspect of their lives, from first flight and feeding to migration and mating. His dazzling photography captures the allure of these beloved backyard visitors, while the book's headings and small blocks of text make for easy yet informative reading. This combination of images and insight results in a one-of-a-kind browsing experience. Your coffee table won't be complete without Amazing Hummingbirds.
"Birds of North America" is the ultimate family reference on the birds of the United States and Canada, in an accessible format that is perfect for field use.
Written by a team of more than 30 birders and ornithologists, each an expert on certain species or family bird groups, "Birds of North America" brings a whole new level of expertise to the birder's library, all in one category-killing volume. Information on behavior, nesting, and habitat, omitted from many field guides, is included throughout, while books on behavior don't include the wealth of identification information, in as accessible a format, as does this book.
This is a celebration in word and image of the birds who return each year to the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge to nest - and how they link every point on the globe. 200 colour photos from award-wining nature photographers, Subhankar Banerjee, Steven Kazlowski and Arthur Morris are included. Essays by noted writers, biologists and conservationists, including David Allen Sibley, Debble Miller and former US president Jimmy Carter are provided. It offers life histories of individual bird species from every major group, including shorebirds, songbirds and raptors plus dramatic stories of migration and strategies for survival. It also includes an audio CD of Arctic bird songs.
"The photos and illustrations in this large volume are so beautiful that one is tempted to skim the text. . . . That, however, would be a mistake: while brief, the text provides all the information readers need to understand the how, why and where of bird migration."
-- Publishers Weekly (starred review)
Every year, billions of birds leave their North American breeding grounds for winter quarters thousands of miles south. That so many birds migrate so far through life-threatening conditions and to the same place each year is simply stunning.
This lavishly illustrated book provides comprehensive information on migration and its great mystery: How do the birds know where to go? The latest scientific discoveries are explained, and a comprehensive directory presents accurate profiles and chronicles the migratory routes of more than 500 typical migrant species. Colorful maps, photographs, calendars and fact files feature easy-to-read symbols and abbreviations.
Atlas of Bird Migration includes:
- North American birds of prey
- Hummingbirds, grosbeaks and starlings
- Eurasian shorebirds, storks and cranes
- Winter visitors from the Far North, such as swans, geese and finches
- African, South American and Australasian migrants
- Migratory sea birds, such as penguins, albatrosses and terns.
The use of satellite tracking methods, current environmental threats and conservation initiatives are explained, and a comprehensive catalog of migrating species from all continents closes the book.