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The Bird: A Natural History of Who Birds Are, Where They Came From & How They Live

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In this follow-up to his acclaimed work The Tree, Tudge offers a delightful exploration of the fascinating world of birds. b&w illustrations throughout.


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In this follow-up to his acclaimed work The Tree, Tudge offers a delightful exploration of the fascinating world of birds. b&w illustrations throughout.

30 review for The Bird: A Natural History of Who Birds Are, Where They Came From & How They Live

  1. 4 out of 5

    ☙ nemo ❧ (pagesandprozac)

    unlike most reviewers, i did actually enjoy the homeric Catalogue of Birds. however, the writer's style really, really grated on me - and i'm not entirely sure why. we just did not, at all, vibe. he seems to have a very high opinion of himself, and always name-drops places where he's seen these various birds in a way that doesn't benefit the text at all, just an off-hand, "oh, by the way, i WENT to AFRICA to see these BIRDS," as though that somehow legitimises what he's saying; these location nam unlike most reviewers, i did actually enjoy the homeric Catalogue of Birds. however, the writer's style really, really grated on me - and i'm not entirely sure why. we just did not, at all, vibe. he seems to have a very high opinion of himself, and always name-drops places where he's seen these various birds in a way that doesn't benefit the text at all, just an off-hand, "oh, by the way, i WENT to AFRICA to see these BIRDS," as though that somehow legitimises what he's saying; these location name-drops never have a prurient little anecdote, just "yeah i saw these birds" which... why? i also despise it when non-fiction books that have little to no references, especially science, and ESPECIALLY when discussing different theories. i don't expect it to be as fully referenced as an academic paper, but i do expect SOME, especially when he was discussing theories and he just said "some scientists..." WHICH scientists? and WHEN? i have read many a popular science book written for the layperson that has substantial references. there is no excuse. one part that seriously annoyed me was, "It seems to be the case, like it or not, that in mammals the males are the more flamboyant and more variable sex. The males are usually bigger and stronger, and take more risks. Among human beings, the greatest poets, composers and physicists tend to be men, although many of the finest prose-writers and biologists are women. But there are also more seriously dim and dangerous men than dim and dangerous women. Some put all this down to expectation and upbringing but some ascribe the differences to biology." (emphasis mine.) This is clearly a very loaded topic that has all sorts of different opinions, so if there was any time for some references, it would be now. but there is not. who, exactly, are "some?" this would get me castigated in goddamn high school essays, let alone an actual published book, academic or not. there were also some very nitpicky and personal things i didn't like, such as when he implies the brits are effete and soft - no we fucking aren't, Tudge; we go fox hunting and all sorts of shit so don't even try with the whole "brits aren't savages uwu" implication. there were also some implications about the "battle of the sexes between birds"; it should be noted that everything humans do are subject to humans' implicit biases, including (especially?) science, which he doesn't really address - he mentions it in the context of darwin, but seems to imply that we have risen above such biases in the modern era. not so. i am also against the use of the word "rape" when referring to animals, as it is a very human concept and i find using it to refer to animals is biologically inaccurate and anthropologically irresponsible. "sexual coercion" would make more sense, as it conveys the same thing but is very literal and descriptive, as opposed to "rape" which, as mentioned, is a very human concept with very human parameters. indeed, the term "sexual coercion" and terms other than rape are used by biologists; if the term rape is used, there are specific parameters that differentiate between human and animal rape.* again, those things in the past paragraph tie in with my opinion on social and political issues, and therefore are personal and may not be an issue to other people. but personal or not, there is no excuse for the absolute dearth of references. it makes it impossible to sort out which of his statements are his own opinion (singular opinions shouldn't be relied too much upon anyway, let alone those of a non-scientist - which he is; he studied biology at university decades ago, which does not a scientist make) and which have arose from actual scientific studies. a science writer who is not a scientist should be absolutely peppering references everywhere, otherwise how the hell can i trust anything they say? with some things - "parrots are good mimics" that is of course not necessary, but (and this is verbatim) "Pigeons can distinguish paintings by Monet from paintings by Picasso" - i mean, i'm sure they can, but can you give a goddamn REFERENCE to the study that SAYS THAT? in a way, this kind of ties in with what i said before - the author seems to have such a high opinion of himself that he takes it for granted that whatever he writes down should be taken as rote. no thank you, mr tudge; i wouldn't take anything richard dawkins says as rote without a reference, let alone you. something else nitpicky - he correctly says "cold-blooded" and "warm-blooded" are inaccurate and idiomatic terms, but he says that homeopathic equals warm-blooded and poikilothermic equals cold-blooded. this is broadly true, but it would be more precise to use the terms ectothermic and endothermic. i know that the MAJORITY of ectotherms are polikiotherms and endotherms homeotherms but they are not ABSOLUTE SYNONYMS, whereas warmblooded = endotherm and coldblooded = ectotherm are. yes, this is a bit nitpicky, but when i read about science i want absolute precision, especially with things like this, where it isn't even difficult or complicated. come on. the content was very interesting, especially as i love birds, but the writing style prevents me from giving this five stars. it was written a decade ago, not six decades ago - where are the REFERENCES??? this review may seem rather harsh. but god fucking dammit if i hate it when "science writers" don't back their statements up with SCIENTIFIC STUDIES. it takes three seconds to reference where you got your information from. it's pure laziness. this book only didn't get one star because i love reading about birds. * some references about this, in spoiler so not to make this even longer. although this is not by any means anything scientific, it would seem hypocrtitical of me to not give references when talking about the use of "sexual coercion" rather than "rape" when referring to animals, so here we are. -(view spoiler)[ Knott, C. D.; Thompson, Emery, M.; Stumpf, R. M.; McIntyre, M. H. (2010). "Female reproductive strategies in orangutans, evidence for female choice and counterstrategies to infanticide in a species with frequent sexual coercion." Biological Sciences 277, 105–13. - Smuts, Barbara B. (1993) "Male Aggression and Sexual Coercion of Females in Nonhuman Primates and Other Mammals: Evidence and Theoretical Implications." Advances in the Study of Behavior 22 there is also this interesting article that specifically discusses human vs. non-human "rape" and highlights differences between the two "without making implications about human rape," which i believe is very important: Palmer, C. (1989). "Rape in Nonhuman Animal Species: Definitions, Evidence, and Implications." The Journal of Sex Research, 26(3), 355-374. (hide spoiler)]

  2. 4 out of 5

    B. Rule

    I didn't finish this book. The author gets points for being exhaustive, but... he loses points for being exhaustive. A lot of the book is just lists of things some birds do. And since birds are so diverse, those lists get LONG. And not necessarily organized by any particular principle. While I usually like this sort of infodump, I just couldn't get into it here. There needs to be some narrative structure or hook that keeps you awake. Sadly, I didn't find one before Izzzzzzzzzzz I didn't finish this book. The author gets points for being exhaustive, but... he loses points for being exhaustive. A lot of the book is just lists of things some birds do. And since birds are so diverse, those lists get LONG. And not necessarily organized by any particular principle. While I usually like this sort of infodump, I just couldn't get into it here. There needs to be some narrative structure or hook that keeps you awake. Sadly, I didn't find one before Izzzzzzzzzzz

  3. 5 out of 5

    Jeanette

    This is a book that took me longer to read than any other book of 2016. And I stuck to the read diligently. But I think it is only going to be appreciated by those with scientific classification onus and supreme interest and patient love of BIRDS. There are many species and this is no short cut to their placements, shapes, locales, and habits. Far, far more than most people would want to know, IMHO. And posed in bird study language prose, at that. MANY terms to learn if you are a novice. More th This is a book that took me longer to read than any other book of 2016. And I stuck to the read diligently. But I think it is only going to be appreciated by those with scientific classification onus and supreme interest and patient love of BIRDS. There are many species and this is no short cut to their placements, shapes, locales, and habits. Far, far more than most people would want to know, IMHO. And posed in bird study language prose, at that. MANY terms to learn if you are a novice. More than in any Biology course or Aves genus survey. There were some aspects that I never knew or realized and that absolutely intrigued and would allow for further knowledge of the language needed to describe and observe birds at hand, or birds during travel, or birds as pets. Words like cline. The best chapter was upon how human cognition or "people think" can or cannot translate to "bird think" or cognition that is quite apart from a Skinner response or stat behavioral reaction. There were excellent philosophical theory points, but for me ruined by preaching. Especially when some huge characterizations for human behaviors involved within the "philosophy" hold intrinsic flaws. As if all wars are only the result of materialism. They are not. But what he knows about birds and their natures, habits- is more than you'd ever be able to forget. I'm going to look at my Wood Ducks differently, let me tell you.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Sher

    The writer tries to do much in 400 plus pages besides just covering the natural history of birds. Tudge has chapters on the mind of the birds, bird conservation and the history of extinct species, and even a chapter on prehistoric birds and bird classification. I got lost in the detail in some of this book, but I have studied birds enough that I found much of his esoteric details on species I know --fascinating. Because Tudge is British, many birds of the UK are covered, and although he uses met The writer tries to do much in 400 plus pages besides just covering the natural history of birds. Tudge has chapters on the mind of the birds, bird conservation and the history of extinct species, and even a chapter on prehistoric birds and bird classification. I got lost in the detail in some of this book, but I have studied birds enough that I found much of his esoteric details on species I know --fascinating. Because Tudge is British, many birds of the UK are covered, and although he uses metric measurements --pounds - ounces and feet are always provided in ( ). Definitely not recommended for the casual reader, but if you are seriously into birds and natural history, you should find some gems here.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Brendan Artley

    Some chapters were quite interesting, but got put off by the 60 page chapter that listed the order of all birds.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Marissa F

    As a birder, I enjoyed all the parts of the book with details about birds’ lives and ancestry, which luckily comprised most of the book! I learned a lot that I didn’t already know. My rating is not higher, however, because the sections discussing economics, philosophy, psychology and politics that came up were boring and hard to get through, and had me ready to get back to the birds.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Chris Leuchtenburg

    This book is packed with fun facts like the 100-minute copulation of Vasa Parrots and the 25,000-mile annual migration of the Arctic Tern, but all of those facts without a central purpose weigh down the text. I am an avid birdwatcher, but this book was too much of a good thing. The narrative often rambles, so it isn't at all clear why the author wrote this book. The rambling and the long, long lists of factoids made it feel like I was trudging through Tudge's book. I skipped 96-page chapter four This book is packed with fun facts like the 100-minute copulation of Vasa Parrots and the 25,000-mile annual migration of the Arctic Tern, but all of those facts without a central purpose weigh down the text. I am an avid birdwatcher, but this book was too much of a good thing. The narrative often rambles, so it isn't at all clear why the author wrote this book. The rambling and the long, long lists of factoids made it feel like I was trudging through Tudge's book. I skipped 96-page chapter four (All the Birds in the World: An Annotated Cast List) entirely.

  8. 5 out of 5

    June

    Don't waste your time. This author seems to have an inflated opinion of himself and never passes up a chance to stick it to Americans (the military man is a natural born killer??). All I wanted to do was learn more about birds but the author ruined that experience by his warped political views scattered into the chapters. Wish I had my money (and time) back. Don't waste your time. This author seems to have an inflated opinion of himself and never passes up a chance to stick it to Americans (the military man is a natural born killer??). All I wanted to do was learn more about birds but the author ruined that experience by his warped political views scattered into the chapters. Wish I had my money (and time) back.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Kerry

    Wow, it took me ages to finish this book (18 months or so). The first half was a long trudge through a survey of every bird family. Exhaustive but lots of interesting things in there to keep me going. The second half was a fascinating look at how different birds feed, breed, think, and behave.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Tutankhamun18

    Great book! The first eight chapters I loved, his style is easy and conversational and yet he still provides a wealth of hard hitting science. The 9th chapter about the mind of birds asks some interesting questions but for a biology student these have already been made and discussed and so nothing was really added in this chapter. Particularly after reading the book by Nathan Emrery. But this is not a fault of the book...

  11. 4 out of 5

    Prashanth

    Colin Tudge has managed to take the complex nature of birds and condense it into a book that is both easy to read and doesn't sound like a text book. A real game changer in understanding the lifes of our fellow beings. The last 2 chapters are sad as he describes how in the name of progress, we have been putting one bird after into the endangered list. Colin Tudge has managed to take the complex nature of birds and condense it into a book that is both easy to read and doesn't sound like a text book. A real game changer in understanding the lifes of our fellow beings. The last 2 chapters are sad as he describes how in the name of progress, we have been putting one bird after into the endangered list.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Kelly Macfarlane

    Eminently readable (by a non-specialist, non-scientist, like myself) account of birds and what makes them tick.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Al Bità

    This is a rather wonderful summation of current knowledge regarding birds, beautifully written, with some rather lovely line drawings (for those of you expecting some nice colour photos bve warned: there are none...) and covering just about anything a lay person might want to know about the current state of knowledge regarding those amazing creatures we know as birds. Admittedly, there is the occasional feeling that the book is providing one with too much information, but it appears to me that th This is a rather wonderful summation of current knowledge regarding birds, beautifully written, with some rather lovely line drawings (for those of you expecting some nice colour photos bve warned: there are none...) and covering just about anything a lay person might want to know about the current state of knowledge regarding those amazing creatures we know as birds. Admittedly, there is the occasional feeling that the book is providing one with too much information, but it appears to me that the biological definitions cannot be dealt with otherwise. The science is provided as it is understood to be at the beginning fo the 21st century; yet the author is never insistent that only one view is permissible: he presents alternative views without rancour, and is most gentle about it all... It is obvious from this work that the study of birds is comparatively in its infancy, but that does not say that we are completely ignorant. Birds are far more fascinating and interesting the more we learn from them. Indeed, the author suggests that as we learn more about them, the more we actually learn to understand ourselves, essentially because it forces us to re-evaluate our preconceptions; and those preconceptions are more indicative of our 'definitions' of ourselves as 'different'. The final chapters of the book talks about our 'responsibility' to the world, and how our actions influence, for better or for worse (often mostly the latter!), our relationships not only to birds, but to all life forms on earth. More and adequate funding is required by responsible governments to examine, study, marvel at, and untimately protect this valuable resource. As Tudge tells us at the end: "In short, birds are wonderful to behold. They can bring us pleasure wherever they are. But also, the more we look at them, the more they tell us about ourselves and the way the world really is."

  14. 5 out of 5

    Ed

    I’ve become interested in birds lately. They’re everywhere! I want to know more about them! From this book’s cover I was kind of expecting a casual introduction to robins and starlings and blue tits and other garden birds, but this book was a lot more than that. It’s about pretty much every bird there is. There’s lots of interesting stuff on the origins of birds, and their various behaviours. There’s a big chapter in the middle that goes into all the different bird families, which was interestin I’ve become interested in birds lately. They’re everywhere! I want to know more about them! From this book’s cover I was kind of expecting a casual introduction to robins and starlings and blue tits and other garden birds, but this book was a lot more than that. It’s about pretty much every bird there is. There’s lots of interesting stuff on the origins of birds, and their various behaviours. There’s a big chapter in the middle that goes into all the different bird families, which was interesting but, as another reviewer mentioned, did feel like one big long list. There’s tons of information and I only absorbed a fraction of it, I’m sure. This book is definitely a broad overview, not going in-depth about any particular species, but I think it’ll be a great starting off point for further reading. Really easy to read writing style, too. Though in places it’s written with typical British indirectness, and occasionally he uses words like ‘could’ and ‘may’ too freely and I was left wondering exactly in what sense he meant them. I was kind of apprehensive starting out when the book seemed to be taking a religious bent, but thankfully the mentions of god and Christianity are kept to a minimum and don’t impinge on the science. However, personally I’d much prefer they weren’t there at all - they wouldn’t be missed. It was weirdly incongruous in a science book, written in the 21st century, to have these references to human myth thrown in. As I said, it’s not that invasive, but do be warned if you’re like me and religion isn’t your thing.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Robert

    A tour of what we know and what we are learning about birds. There is one chapter that surveys all of the birds of the world. It's a bit encylopedic and I skipped it. But the rest is engaging and packed full of detail, historical and otherwise. One good example of these marvelous details, of the many that stuck with me, is his example of a cline -- a population, generally spread out geographically, that varies continuously from one end to the other with individuals successfully mating only with t A tour of what we know and what we are learning about birds. There is one chapter that surveys all of the birds of the world. It's a bit encylopedic and I skipped it. But the rest is engaging and packed full of detail, historical and otherwise. One good example of these marvelous details, of the many that stuck with me, is his example of a cline -- a population, generally spread out geographically, that varies continuously from one end to the other with individuals successfully mating only with those that are neighbors to each other: "One group of gulls forms a cline that runs right around the ARctic Circle, and their color varies continously from a silvery gray to dark slaty gray. All along the cline the gulls in any one place breed perfectly happily with their neighbors on either side. But the gulls at the two extreme ends of the cline are so different that they cannot, or at least do not, breed with each other. In fact, both ends of the ciruclar cline meet around Britain and are regarded as separate species. The silvery-gray one is the Herring Gull...and the dark one is the Lesser Black-backed Gull" Not to be overlooked: the Further Reading section at the end.

  16. 4 out of 5

    James

    Not a guide to birds, but an introduction and discussion of what birds are, including extensive glances back into the fossil record as well as assessments of current (often grim) bird habitats, populations, and prognoses. Since the book deals with the fossil record, it also of necessity discusses the entire evolutionary development of bird phylogeny as currently understood. Tudge fearlessly leaps into the world of DNA phylogeny and highlights major portions of the current structure that likely wi Not a guide to birds, but an introduction and discussion of what birds are, including extensive glances back into the fossil record as well as assessments of current (often grim) bird habitats, populations, and prognoses. Since the book deals with the fossil record, it also of necessity discusses the entire evolutionary development of bird phylogeny as currently understood. Tudge fearlessly leaps into the world of DNA phylogeny and highlights major portions of the current structure that likely will shift, fall, move, or otherwise change dramatically in response to new evolutionary data derived from DNA studies. Long sections on bird feeding, reproduction (including sex), nesting, environment, intelligence, mind, conservation efforts, and more. Extremely well written, and not nearly as technical as I have made it sound. Quite pleasant and conversational, actually. I highly recommend this to anyone with a remote interest not only in birds, but science in general and biological sciences in particular.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Mark Desrosiers

    Colin Tudge is a remarkable writer in that he can remain both authoritative and filled with doubt in a sentence. Along with a bit of angular Anglo wit, this makes for a groovy page-turner about birds: their evolution, abundance, behavior, classification, and strangeness. Although one brave and huge chapter depicting the dramatis personae -- every avian order in the 2010 taxonomic system -- will bog you down as he tries to say something interesting about them all, the rest of the book is a deligh Colin Tudge is a remarkable writer in that he can remain both authoritative and filled with doubt in a sentence. Along with a bit of angular Anglo wit, this makes for a groovy page-turner about birds: their evolution, abundance, behavior, classification, and strangeness. Although one brave and huge chapter depicting the dramatis personae -- every avian order in the 2010 taxonomic system -- will bog you down as he tries to say something interesting about them all, the rest of the book is a delight. Digressions and controversies all over the place, and as always the quicksand of ambiguity, not just in bird evolution (which he engages with both vast knowledge and poetic confusion) but basics such as speciation and behavior. And penises. Most birds have none. Some have baffling huge ones.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Leilani

    An absolutely brilliant immersion in everything Bird, written in thoughtful prose with a wonderfully dry wit. The sections on evolution, eating, mating, and bird consciousness were fascinating, filled with lively anecdotes and clear descriptions of the science involved. The listing of all the bird families in the world did slow me down a bit, but even that chapter had interesting tidbits scattered all the way through. The last two chapters, about our historical/cultural views of humanity's relat An absolutely brilliant immersion in everything Bird, written in thoughtful prose with a wonderfully dry wit. The sections on evolution, eating, mating, and bird consciousness were fascinating, filled with lively anecdotes and clear descriptions of the science involved. The listing of all the bird families in the world did slow me down a bit, but even that chapter had interesting tidbits scattered all the way through. The last two chapters, about our historical/cultural views of humanity's relation to the rest of nature and how it needs to be re-evaluated, included lots of material for further thought, and I'm looking forward to checking out some of the books he listed for additional reading!

  19. 5 out of 5

    Travis

    A random book that caught my interest at the library. It is well written and interesting, and I think I would like to read more of it, especially a section that examines all of the currently defined orders of birds and example species from each. And yet I've had this book checked out for several months now and it never quite catches my interest enough, or drags me into it so that I must read more. And consequently I don't read it and feel guilty about not doing so, and so I give up for now, mayb A random book that caught my interest at the library. It is well written and interesting, and I think I would like to read more of it, especially a section that examines all of the currently defined orders of birds and example species from each. And yet I've had this book checked out for several months now and it never quite catches my interest enough, or drags me into it so that I must read more. And consequently I don't read it and feel guilty about not doing so, and so I give up for now, maybe to revisit it at some time when birds are more on my mind and learning details about them seem more engaging to my lines of thought.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Troy

    Tons of material in here, not easy to just sit down and read, easier to take it in a little bit at a time. As a comprehensive study of birds, this book is great. Thorough and detailed, Tudge looks at all aspects of this animal and presents it in a clear way. As a non-fiction book, it was a bit dull and boring at times, occasionally repetitive, and overall just far too long to appeal to the layperson.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Roger

    I thought this book was going to be what the title says. I was wrong. I started it thinking I was going to have a pleasant little stroll and ended up on a massive journey which at times was pretty rough tough going. I have learned a tremendous amount, I have been encouraged to read further, and at times the comments have utterly chimed with my own sensibilities- a very scary and interesting travel with some amusement and lots of horror within its pages.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Clarissa

    This is a wonderful book full of entertaining facts about birds and how they live. Colin Tudge is quite funny at times, and birds do many interesting things. For example crows have been seen to make and use tools. Konrad Lorenz once had a jackdaw who was fond of the maid. To show it's affection it would try to stuff caterpillars into her ear! This is a wonderful book full of entertaining facts about birds and how they live. Colin Tudge is quite funny at times, and birds do many interesting things. For example crows have been seen to make and use tools. Konrad Lorenz once had a jackdaw who was fond of the maid. To show it's affection it would try to stuff caterpillars into her ear!

  23. 4 out of 5

    Catherine Thompson

    This book has changed the way I look at birds. I've always liked birds, with the exceptions of gulls and pigeons, but now I can't even look at a herring gull the same way as I always have. Tudge delves into the lives of birds with humour and a keen eye. You'll learn things you didn't even know you didn't know! This book has changed the way I look at birds. I've always liked birds, with the exceptions of gulls and pigeons, but now I can't even look at a herring gull the same way as I always have. Tudge delves into the lives of birds with humour and a keen eye. You'll learn things you didn't even know you didn't know!

  24. 5 out of 5

    Patricia

    This book calls for a slow reading and then a rereading. It's packed with wide-ranging detail that takes some time to start to sink in. All that detail conveys wonder and delight, though, in author's personal, personable style. One of the most wonderful chapters explores how birds might think. This book calls for a slow reading and then a rereading. It's packed with wide-ranging detail that takes some time to start to sink in. All that detail conveys wonder and delight, though, in author's personal, personable style. One of the most wonderful chapters explores how birds might think.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Billy

    What a wonderful book. Told with great love and affection for its subject, this is a story of the growth of scientific knowledge backed by the growth of the human heart and spirit.Through birds, Tudge helps us get a handle on all of life.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Laith El-Moghrabi

    A nice enjoyable read. Although I am a birdwatcher but there was a lot of info that was new to me. I would recommend to people who would like to know more about these amazing creatures. It's a very good awareness book for birds and nature as a whole A nice enjoyable read. Although I am a birdwatcher but there was a lot of info that was new to me. I would recommend to people who would like to know more about these amazing creatures. It's a very good awareness book for birds and nature as a whole

  27. 5 out of 5

    Kathe

    Love this book, after several re-readings I truly appreciate the deep understanding of birds and their lives. Wow. Now to find more books by Colin Tudge. British, of course. This book so complete, so detailed, I'll refer to it often. Love this book, after several re-readings I truly appreciate the deep understanding of birds and their lives. Wow. Now to find more books by Colin Tudge. British, of course. This book so complete, so detailed, I'll refer to it often.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Florence Millo

    An excellent book on birds, their ancestry, their feeding, migrating, & mating habits, and their future in the hands of mankind. I especially enjoyed his little personal asides and his sense of humor. Really good book.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Colleen

    An excellent book. After an introduction to evolution and bird physiology and an overview of species, it gives information on mating, child rearing, migration, feeding and social structure. A nice mix, primarily of science, but with a bit of philosophy for good measure

  30. 4 out of 5

    Tania Greenwood

    Excellent text covering just about any and every bird in existence (and a few that are not). Tudge 's knowledge of birds is incredible, and he writes in such a way that the book's information is accessible and often humorous. Loved this! This was the non-fiction text in my 2017 reading challenge. Excellent text covering just about any and every bird in existence (and a few that are not). Tudge 's knowledge of birds is incredible, and he writes in such a way that the book's information is accessible and often humorous. Loved this! This was the non-fiction text in my 2017 reading challenge.

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