The Genius of Birds - Jennifer Ackerman

Birds are so diverse and surprising that any book about them, especially one written by a scientist as deeply engaged with her subject as Ackerman, offers a host of new facts; here you’ll learn that turkeys are closer to dinosaurs than any other birds; that birds really do sleep with one eye open, and they also experience periods of REM sleep; that mockingbirds can imitate 200-plus songs, including ringing phones and truck back-up beeps. But Ackerman’s study focuses specifically on intelligence; she surveys  bird behavior world-wide, citing investigations of birds’ brain size and structure, their sensitivity to geomagnetism, their social networks, and much more.

The Genius of Birds By Jennifer Ackerman Cover Image
ISBN: 9781594205217
Availability: Not On Our Shelves—Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Penguin Press - April 12th, 2016

The Genius of Birds By Jennifer Ackerman Cover Image
ISBN: 9780399563126
Availability: In Stock—Click for Locations
Published: Penguin Books - April 11th, 2017

It is Folly to Assume My Awesome Lies Dormant: The Paintings of the Mincing Mockingbird - Matt Adrian

This is, by far, the strangest birding book you will ever come across. It is somehow a hybrid of bird appreciation, art book, and humor. Matt Adrian has put together a collection of his best bird paintings and then accompanied them with witty, irreverent captions that will make you giggle out loud. The commentary alone is worth buying this book, but the paintings are genuinely beautiful as well, and it is this ridiculous juxtaposition that makes this a truly enjoyable affair.

The Bird: A Natural History of Who Birds Are, Where They Came From, and How They Live - Colin Tudge

A bee-eater consumes some 200 bees a day to survive. The tailorbird uses its beak and spider webs to sew leaves together for its nest. In owls, one ear is higher and bigger than the other to sharpen hearing. Collectively, a bird’s feathers weigh more than all its bones. And in the next few decades, one of every nine species of bird may go extinct. These are just some of the facts Colin Tudge has gathered in his capacious, enthusiastic study, The Bird (Crown, $30). He shows how birds nest and mate and he explains the difference between calls and songs. He includes lessons in taxonomy and surveys the 31 orders into which the world’s 10,500 species of birds are organized. He explains what little we understand about migration, and describes scientific debates over the relationship between birds and dinosaurs and how birds think. He lays out the arguments for seeing birds in a spirit of Darwinian competitiveness as opposed to one of mutually beneficial cooperation. As he did in The Tree, Tudge assembles a huge amount of information into a compelling narrative.

The Bird: A Natural History of Who Birds Are, Where They Came From, and How They Live By Colin Tudge Cover Image
ISBN: 9780307342058
Availability: Special Order—Subject to Availability
Published: Crown - September 7th, 2010