The Armchair Birder: Discovering the Secret Lives of Familiar Birds
University of North Carolina Press
, 2009 - Nature
- 264 pages
Bird lovers, take heart! While the birding literature is filled with tales of expert observers spotting rare species in exotic locales, John Yow'sThe Armchair Birderreminds us that the most fascinating birds can be the ones perched right outside our windows. In thirty-five engaging, humorous, and even irreverent essays, Yow reveals the fascinating lives of birds you probably already recognize and naturally want to know more about--because they're the ones you see nearly every day.
Following the seasons of the year, Yow covers forty-two species, from the Carolina wren that rings in the springtime to the sandhill crane croaking high overhead at the end of winter. Leisurely and entertaining, the essays explore the improbable, unusual, and comical aspects of their subjects' lives--from the philandering of the ruby-throated hummingbird to the occasional dipsomania of the cedar waxwing.
Rather than bare facts and field marks,The Armchair Birderoffers observations, anecdotes, and stories--not only Yow's own, but also those of America's classic bird writers, such as John James Audubon, Arthur Bent, and Edward Forbush, experts who saw it all and wrote with wit and passion.
WithThe Armchair Birder, backyard birders will take new delight in the birds at their feeders, while veteran check-listers will enjoy putting their feet up. All will applaud this unique addition to bird literature, one that combines the fascination of bird life with the pleasure of good reading.