Monday, August 27, 2012

BOOKreMARKS: Bye, Bye Birdie

I’ve reached the final chapter of Sy Montgomery’s Birdology and I hesitate to begin it because I don’t want the book to end. Heck, I didn’t want the hummingbird chapter to end.

I’ve learned so much about birds (Montgomery writes: “A raptor’s vision is the sharpest of all living creatures.” They can spot prey across a three-square-mile area from 1,000 feet in the air.) and have delighted in the stories (Scientists studying homing pigeons at Cornell University had one bird who always made it back to Ithaca after being released elsewhere, but never returned to the coop as did the other birds in the study. Instead, locals who spotted the wayward banded bird in their yards would report it to Cornell, then send the bird back to the scientists—in a taxi! I’m guessing the first time the pigeon failed to return to the coop was an honest mistake, but thereafter he made it a point to meet some new neighbors and get chauffeured through town.)

If you’re not already schooled in bird behavior, please read Birdology. It will enrich your connection to the great outdoors.

[Falcon photo from Audubon Magazine; Frill Back Pigeon photo from the National Pigeon Association.]

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