This illustrated book vividly depicts the most endangered birds in the world and provides the latest information on the threats each species faces and the measures being taken to save them. Today, 571 bird species are classified as critically endangered or endangered, and a further four now exist only in captivity. This landmark book features stunning photographs of 500 of these species--the results of a prestigious international photographic competition organized specifically for this book. It also showcases paintings by acclaimed wildlife artist Tomasz Cofta of the 75 species for which no photos are known to exist. The World's Rarest Birds has introductory chapters that explain the threats to birds, the ways threat categories are applied, and the distinction between threat and rarity. The book is divided into seven regional sections--Europe and the Middle East; Africa and Madagascar; Asia; Australasia; Oceanic Islands; North America, Central America, and the Caribbean; and South America. Each section includes an illustrated directory to the bird species under threat there, and gives a concise description of distribution, status, population, key threats, and conservation needs. This one-of-a-kind book also provides coverage of 62 data-deficient species.
Paul F. Donald,Nigel J. Collar,Stuart J. Marsden,Deborah J. Pain
• Real-life scientific adventure • A thought-provoking exploration of how the Endangered Species Act works--and how it fails Thirty years ago, researchers discovered a previously unknown species of bird in the rain-soaked and remote mountains of Hawaii. As they studied the creature--which sported a black mask and was called the po'ouli--they soon learned that its population was shrinking quickly, and they worked frantically to find out what was killing the species and how they might prevent its extinction. This fast-paced account of their work, done in one of the world's most inhospitable environments, describes a stirring fight for survival. It also illustrates the challenge of protecting endangered species in a rapidly changing world.
Part detective story, part love affair, and pure adventure storytelling at its best, a celebration of the thrill of exploration and the lure of wild places during the search for the elusive Nechisar Nightjar. In 1990, a group of Cambridge scientists arrived at the Plains of Nechisar in Ethiopia. On that expedition, they collected more than two dozen specimens, saw more than three hundred species of birds, and a plethora of rare butterflies, dragonflies, reptiles, mammals, and plants. As they were gathering up their findings, a wing of an unidentified bird was packed into a brown paper bag. It was to become the most famous wing in the world. This wing would set the world of science aflutter. Experts were mystified. The wing was entirely unique. It was like nothing they had ever seem before. Could a new species be named based on just one wing? After much discussion, a new species was announced: Nechisar Nightjar, or Camprimulgus Solala, which means "only wing." And so birdwatchers like Vernon began to dream. Twenty-two years later, he joins an expedition of four to find this rarest bird in the world. In this gem of nature writing, Vernon captivates and enchants as he recounts the searches by spotlight through the Ethiopian plains, and allows the reader to mediate on nature, exploration, our need for wild places, and the human compulsion to name things. Rarest Bird is a celebration of a certain way of seeing the world, and will bring out the explorer in in everyone who reads it.
Describes the desperate race against time to save a rare blue parrot, the Spix's Macaw, from extinction, by calling for private collectors to allow their birds to mate with the last wild specimen, a bird that had lived for years without a mate, in a dramatic story of the humans who had brought the species to the brink of annihilation. Reprint. 25,000 first printing.
Author: Steve N. G. Howell,Ian Lewington,Will Russell
Publisher: Princeton University Press
Category: Literary Criticism
Rare Birds of North America is the first comprehensive illustrated guide to the vagrant birds that occur throughout the United States and Canada. Featuring 275 stunning color plates, this book covers 262 species originating from three very different regions--the Old World, the New World tropics, and the world's oceans. It explains the causes of avian vagrancy and breaks down patterns of occurrence by region and season, enabling readers to see where, when, and why each species occurs in North America. Detailed species accounts describe key identification features, taxonomy, age, sex, distribution, and status. Rare Birds of North America provides unparalleled insights into vagrancy and avian migration, and will enrich the birding experience of anyone interested in finding and observing rare birds. Covers 262 species of vagrant birds found in the United States and Canada Features 275 stunning color plates that depict every species Explains patterns of occurrence by region and season Provides an invaluable overview of vagrancy patterns and migration Includes detailed species accounts and cutting-edge identification tips
A Natural History of the World's Most Captivating Birds
Author: Catherine A. Toft,Timothy F. Wright
Publisher: Univ of California Press
Parrots of the Wild explores recent scientific discoveries and what they reveal about the lives of wild parrots, which are among the most intelligent and rarest of birds. Catherine A. Toft and Tim Wright discuss the evolutionary history of parrots and how this history affects perceptual and cognitive abilities, diet and foraging patterns, and mating and social behavior. The authors also discuss conservation status and the various ways different populations are adapting to a world that is rapidly changing. The book focuses on general patterns across the 350-odd species of parrots, as well as what can be learned from interesting exceptions to these generalities. A synthetic account of the diversity and ecology of wild parrots, this book distills knowledge from the authors’ own research and from their review of more than 2,400 published scientific studies. The book is enhanced by an array of illustrations, including nearly ninety color photos of wild parrots represented in their natural habitats. Parrots of the Wild melds scientific exploration with features directed at the parrot enthusiast to inform and delight a broad audience.
Beauty, Obsession, and the Natural History Heist of the Century
Author: Kirk Wallace Johnson
“Fascinating from the first page to the last—you won’t be able to put it down.” —Southern Living A rollicking true-crime adventure and a thought-provoking exploration of the human drive to possess natural beauty for readers of The Stranger in the Woods, The Lost City of Z, and The Orchid Thief. On a cool June evening in 2009, after performing a concert at London's Royal Academy of Music, twenty-year-old American flautist Edwin Rist boarded a train for a suburban outpost of the British Museum of Natural History. Home to one of the largest ornithological collections in the world, the Tring museum was full of rare bird specimens whose gorgeous feathers were worth staggering amounts of money to the men who shared Edwin's obsession: the Victorian art of salmon fly-tying. Once inside the museum, the champion fly-tier grabbed hundreds of bird skins—some collected 150 years earlier by a contemporary of Darwin's, Alfred Russel Wallace, who'd risked everything to gather them—and escaped into the darkness. Two years later, Kirk Wallace Johnson was waist high in a river in northern New Mexico when his fly-fishing guide told him about the heist. He was soon consumed by the strange case of the feather thief. What would possess a person to steal dead birds? Had Edwin paid the price for his crime? What became of the missing skins? In his search for answers, Johnson was catapulted into a years-long, worldwide investigation. The gripping story of a bizarre and shocking crime, and one man's relentless pursuit of justice, The Feather Thief is also a fascinating exploration of obsession, and man's destructive instinct to harvest the beauty of nature.
The naturalist and explorer shares his love affair with the crane through his many illustrations focusing on the great bird, along with fascinating text about the creature's place in history, myth, and the natural world. 25,000 first printing.
This book is devoted to the 162 species of thrush, one of the most widespread and well-known families of birds in the world. Identification and distribution are fully covered and the description makes reference to all recognised races. All species of Turdidae thrushes are described and illustrated together with supplementary line drawings depicting aspects of shape an plumage. It contains 540 portraits illustrating adults, immatures and most of the distinctive races."
Approximately 250 wild whooping cranes nest in northern Canada and winter in south Texas, flying 2,500 miles annually between these two distinct havens: the coastal marshes of the Gulf of Mexico and the boreal wilderness on the border of Alberta and the Northwest Territories. Through twists of good fortune, each of these terminal migratory places is protected from human encroachment—by a U.S. national wildlife refuge on the one hand and a Canadian national park on the other. This last remaining natural flock of the species, its numbers small but slowly increasing, has thus become known by the names of its sanctuaries: Aransas–Wood Buffalo. On the flock’s wintering grounds at Aransas National Wildlife Refuge in Texas, photographer Klaus Nigge has captured the daily activity of a single family over several weeks in two separate years, documenting their life in the salt marshes of the central Texas coast and, in one year, the happy arrival from the north of twin adolescents, itself an unusual event. Then, with the backing of National Geographic magazine, he received unprecedented permission from the Canadian government to photograph the cranes’ summer nesting sites in remote areas of Wood Buffalo National Park. To obtain these unique photographs, he sat in a cleverly constructed blind for six days and nights, watching as a chick hatched and the adults cared for their young. There he witnessed both the peace and the perils of the cranes’ summer haven. In three galleries, each containing portfolios of images of these magnificent birds in their natural habitat, Nigge captures the beauty and essential mystery that have led humans the world over to include cranes in their earliest myths and legends. Additionally, Nigge has written vignettes to accompany each of the portfolios. Krista Schlyer provides an introductory text that affords an overview of crane history. She chronicles the monumental efforts by humans to ensure the survival of the species and has added a profile of Nigge, outlining his extraordinary entry into the world of wild whooping cranes in order to acquire these breathtaking photographs.
How Birds Foretell Threats to Our Health and Our World
Author: Peter Doherty
Publisher: The Experiment
At the heart of this book by Nobel Prize–winning immunologist and professor Peter Doherty is this striking observation: Birds detect danger to our health and the environment before we do. Following a diverse cast of bird species around the world—from tufted puffins in Puget Sound to griffon vultures in India, pigeons in East Asia, and wedge-tailed shearwaters off the islands of Australia’s Great Barrier Reef—Doherty illuminates birds’ role as an early warning system for threats to the health of our planet and our own well-being. Their Fate Is Our Fate is an impassioned call not only to attention but to action. As “citizen scientists” we can collect data, vital to cutting-edge research, that depends on the birds that are all around us. Armed with our observations, scientists will continue to uncover new ways to glimpse our future in birds—and to affirm how, truly, their fate is our fate.
Here is a substantially revised and updated English-language version of the only comprehensive, scientific treatment of Brazil's 1635 bird species. Written by the then dean of Brazilian ornithologists and published in Brazil in 1985, it not only lists every individual Brazilian species and provides detailed accounts for most of them but also gives an extensive treatment of the characteristics of each bird family found in the country. In addition, it analyzes the composition of Brazil's avifauna and relates it to the country's geography.
"This ... celebration of birds from around the world unites ... animal portraits from Joel Sartore's ... National Geographic Photo Ark project with ... text by up-and-coming birder Noah Strycker. It includes hundreds of species, from tiny finches to charismatic eagles; brilliant toucans, intricate birds of paradise, and perennial favorites such as parrots, hummingbirds, and owls also make colorful appearances"--Amazon.com.
A Journey to the Forests of Hope (Proceeds Support Birdlife International)
Author: Fanny Lai,Bjorn Olesen
Publisher: Tuttle Publishing
Asia's Wildlife provides rare insights into Tropical Asia's breathtaking forests and the rare species that inhabit them—many of which are now endangered. Proceeds from this book will go to support the conservation activities of BirdLife International. Produced to raise funds and awareness of nature conservation through their Forest of Hope program; Asia's Wildlife is a mesmerizing year-long photographic journey of the expedition taken by Fanny Lai and photographer, Bjorn Olesen to observe, photograph, and describe Asia's most distinctive animal species. Their trip brings you to the most remote and biodiverse forests in eight different countries in Asia and learn about rarely seen, let alone photographed, endangered animal species. Over 190 images and illustrations feature 129 different animal species, of which 72 are national endemics including: The Giant Cloud Rat The Majestic Philippine Eagle The critically endangered Helmeted Hornbill And many other fascinating creatures! Ongoing conservation efforts to protect these precious forests are described as well as the real threats to the future. This book is a fascinating read that provides real insight into Tropical Asia's breath-taking forests and the rare species that inhabit them.
Adventures in Search of the World's Rarest Species
Author: Carlos Magdalena
An impassioned memoir of saving extraordinary plants on the brink of extinction, by a scientist who has been called a "codebreaker" (Telegraph) and "an inspiration" (Jane Goodall) Carlos Magdalena is not your average horticulturist. He's a man on a mission to save the world's most endangered plants. First captivated by the flora of his native Spain, he has travelled to the remotest parts of the globe in search of exotic species. Renowned for his pioneering work, he has committed his life to protecting plants from man-made ecological destruction and thieves hunting for wealthy collectors. In The Plant Messiah, Magdalena takes readers from the Amazon to the jungles of Mauritius to deep within the Australian Outback in search of the rare and the vulnerable. Back in the lab, we watch as he develops groundbreaking, left-field techniques for rescuing species from extinction, encouraging them to propagate and thrive once again. Along the way, he offers moving, heartfelt stories about the secrets contained within these incredible organisms. Passionate and absorbing, The Plant Messiah is a tribute to the diversity of life on our planet, and the importance of preserving it. *Featuring 16 pages of color photos*