Niko's Nature: A Life of Niko Tinbergen and His Science of Animal Behaviour

Niko's Nature: A Life of Niko Tinbergen and His Science of Animal Behaviour

by Hans Kruuk, Niko Tinbergen
     
 

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ISBN-10: 0198515588

ISBN-13: 9780198515586

Pub. Date: 03/28/2004

Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA

Here is the first biography of Niko Tinbergen, the brilliant but reticent naturalist (once described as "pathologically modest") who turned a passion for observing nature into a revolutionary new branch of science that illuminated the study of animal behavior.
Tracing the closely intertwined threads of Niko's personal and professional life, Hans

Overview

Here is the first biography of Niko Tinbergen, the brilliant but reticent naturalist (once described as "pathologically modest") who turned a passion for observing nature into a revolutionary new branch of science that illuminated the study of animal behavior.
Tracing the closely intertwined threads of Niko's personal and professional life, Hans Kruuk reveals the man behind the scientist. He shows how Niko's Calvinist upbringing in a highly intellectual Dutch family—his father was a much-published scholar, his elder brother a Nobel Laureate in Economics—the two-years he spent in a hostage camp during the Nazi occupation of Holland, and most importantly the magical year in Greenland, where he lived amongst the Inuit and observed animals in their natural habitat—an experience that would shape his scientific disposition. The period in Greenland set the stage for the groundbreaking experiments with free-living birds in the 1930s and 1940s that brought the study of animal behavior out of the laboratory and into the wild. Kruuk also offers an illuminating exploration of Niko's work with Konrad Lorenz, for which he won the Nobel Prize in 1973; his great success as a teacher at Oxford, where he was known by enthusiastic students—Desmond Morris, Richard Dawkins, and John Krebs, among them—as "The Maestro"; his frequent bouts of depression; the triumph of his book The Study of Instinct, which established ethology as a science; his controversial work on autism in children, and much more.
Written by Hans Kruuk, a former student of Niko Tinbergen and himself a distinguished scientist, Niko's Nature offers a fascinating and affectionate account of the man who forever changed the way we think about animal behavior.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780198515586
Publisher:
Oxford University Press, USA
Publication date:
03/28/2004
Pages:
408
Product dimensions:
9.47(w) x 6.44(h) x 1.26(d)

Table of Contents

Preface
List of photos in the text
1. Wild birds and science
2. A Dutch upbringing
3. Student years and Greenland
4. Ethologist in the 1930s
5. The Second World War and after
6. Starting again: Oxford in the 1950s
7. Niko's two worlds: Oxford in the 1960s
8. The Nobel Prize, and human behaviour
9. Winding down
10. Niko's legacy
Notes
Niko Tinbergen's publications
Index

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