One Wild Bird at a Time: Portraits of Individual Lives by Bernd Heinrich

By Bernd Heinrich

The acclaimed scientist's encounters with individual wild birds, yielding “marvelous, mind-altering” (Los Angeles Times) insights and discoveries

In his sleek classics One Man’s Owl and Mind of the Raven, Bernd Heinrich has written memorably approximately his relationships with wild ravens and an excellent horned owl.
In One Wild chook at a Time, Heinrich returns to his nice love: shut, daily observations of individual wild birds. There are numerous books on chook habit, but Heinrich argues that the most striking chicken behaviors fall less than the radar of what such a lot birds do in aggregate. Heinrich’s “passionate observations [that] fantastically combine memoir and technological know-how” (New York instances ebook Review) lead to interesting questions — and occasionally startling discoveries. a very good crested flycatcher, whereas bringing meals to the younger of their nest, is attacked through the opposite flycatcher within sight. Why? A pair of Northern glints hammering their nest-hole into the aspect of Heinrich’s cabin bring the chance to monitor the feeding pageant among siblings, and to make a similar discovery approximately nest-cleaning. one among a snatch of redstart warbler infants fledges out of the nest from twenty toes above the floor, and lands at the grass lower than. It can’t fly. what's going to ensue next?
Heinrich “looks heavily, along with his trademark ‘hands-and-knees technological know-how’ at its most attractive, [delivering] what can basically be referred to as mental marvels of realizing” (Boston Globe).
An eminent biologist stocks the thrill of bird-watching and the way staring at the anomalous behaviors of person birds has guided his research.
Heinrich (Emeritus, Biology/Univ. of Vermont; The Homing intuition: which means and secret in Animal Migration, 2014, etc.) easily describes how learning the day-by-day lives of birds of their normal environments permits him to event their global vicariously. Now retired and dwelling in a cabin within the Maine woods, he devotes himself to heavily looking at “his avian pals, viewers, and vagrants, and keep[ing] day-by-day documents all through spring, summer season, fall, and winter.” each year, he welcomes a couple of broad-wing hawks who dinner party at a vernal pond populated via frogs, spring peepers, and salamanders whereas refurbishing their outdated nest. surprisingly, they supply a fern hide at the nest, which they replace each day after their chicks hatch. Heinrich additionally contains anecdotes from an prior time while he nonetheless lived in Vermont. woke up one morning by way of the loud drumming of a male woodpecker on a close-by apple tree, the writer puzzled if probably he was once looking to allure a feminine. strangely, while a feminine was once interested in the sound, he stopped drumming and flew away. a similar habit used to be repeated tomorrow. The author’s observations led him to finish that the bird's drumming used to be now not a part of a mating ritual yet quite a loud commercial of his nest-building abilities. Vireos nesting close to his cabin allowed him to monitor how they intentionally decreased the variety of eggs they have been hatching to deal with the lowered meals offer after an unseasonal freeze. Heinrich explains that bird-watching has been a major a part of his lifestyles considering the fact that he was once a boy on his family's farm. whilst he used to be 6, they moved from Germany to Maine. discovering general birds nesting “immediately made this position our home,” he writes.
an interesting memoir of the possibilities for doing clinical study with no leaving one's personal yard. (Kirkus)