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The Armchair Birder Goes Coastal: The Secret Lives of Birds of the Southeastern Shore [NOOK Book]

Overview

With his distinctively witty, anecdotal, and disarming voice, John Yow now journeys to the shore and shares his encounters with some of the most familiar and beloved coastal birds. Out of his travels--from North Carolina's Outer Banks, down the Atlantic coast, and westward along the Gulf of Mexico--come colorful accounts of twenty-eight species, from ubiquitous beach birds like sanderlings and laughing gulls to wonders of nature like roseate spoonbills and the American avocets. Along the way, Yow delves deeply ...
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The Armchair Birder Goes Coastal: The Secret Lives of Birds of the Southeastern Shore

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Overview

With his distinctively witty, anecdotal, and disarming voice, John Yow now journeys to the shore and shares his encounters with some of the most familiar and beloved coastal birds. Out of his travels--from North Carolina's Outer Banks, down the Atlantic coast, and westward along the Gulf of Mexico--come colorful accounts of twenty-eight species, from ubiquitous beach birds like sanderlings and laughing gulls to wonders of nature like roseate spoonbills and the American avocets. Along the way, Yow delves deeply into the birds' habits and behaviors, experiencing and relating the fascination that leads many an amateur naturalist to become the most unusual of species--a birder.

Seasonally organized chapters explore the improbable, the wonderful, and the amusing aspects of these birds' lives. Yow embellishes his observations with field notes, anecdotes, and stories from some of America's finest naturalists--including John James Audubon, Arthur Cleveland Bent, Rachel Carson, and Peter Matthiessen. Combining the endless fascination of bird life with the pleasure of good reading, The Armchair Birder Goes Coastal is the perfect companion for any nature lover's next trip to the beach.
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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
In this sequel to The Armchair Birder, Yow ventures from his porch to take readers hunting for shorebirds on islands and wildlife refuges in Florida, Georgia, North Carolina, and Alabama, hosted and guided mainly by friends of friends—“not crabby, misanthropic stay-at-homes like me, but kindly, generous folks who like to watch birds...show new species to people who might not have seen ’em yet.” In his folksy, humorous, and erudite style, Yow admires the “beautiful and strange” roseate spoonbills at Florida’s “Ding” Darling National Wildlife Refuge, appreciates the cormorant as “the hardest-working bird on the waterfront,” and dubs the royal tern “America’s bird”: “loud, brawling, and pleasure-loving but pious when it comes to ‘traditional values’; and erratically parental.” His tales are supplemented with information about the birds’ feeding, mating, rearing, migration habits, and species health, drawn from the writings of such experts as John James Audubon, Rachel Carson, Arthur Cleveland Bent, and contributors to Birds of North America Online. Yow also includes amusing auxiliary footnotes, ranging from pronunciations of bird names (“does plover rhyme with lover or rover?”) and the eviction of an African-American community from what is now Georgia’s Harris Neck Land Trust, to a hot-off-the-presses taxonomy update. Agent: Sally McMillan, Sally Hill McMillan and Associates Inc. (May)
From the Publisher
Audubon Editors' Choice

You don't have to go coastal to fall in love with this literary compendium of birding, easily as "charming, witty, anecdotal, [and] readable" as its forefathers.--Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Entertaining . . . . A good read, this title is appropriate for generalists interested in natural history, the wildlife of the southeastern U.S. shore, and birders.--Library Journal

Library Journal
The glamorous birds of the American Southeast have attracted naturalists from the time of John James Audubon, Mark Catesby, and Edward O. Wilson. Yow (The Armchair Birder) continues in this tradition, focusing on birds of the beach, marsh, and bay. He deals with 29 species, such as pelicans, herons, sandpipers, gulls, and skimmers. In spite of its breezy title, the book delves rather deeply into classical natural history literature as well as trips accompanying contemporary field biologists. The birds' habits, behavior, feeding, and courtship are all examined. Yow also discusses the origins and meanings of bird names. He quotes authors like Rachel Carson, Scott Weidensaul, and Peter Matthiessen to augment his own rich experiences. The 15 illustrations detract from Yow's entertaining book—the images range from awful to merely satisfactory. It's a shame in light of the region's rich illustrative tradition of bird art and photography, e.g., the splendid images of John Henry Dick, Frederick Kent Truslow, and Allan D. Cruickshank, that well present these showy birds. VERDICT A good read, this title is appropriate for generalists interested in natural history, the wildlife of the southeastern U.S. shore, and birders.—Henry T. Armistead, formerly with Free Lib. of Philadelphia
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780807882603
  • Publisher: The University of North Carolina Press
  • Publication date: 5/1/2012
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 256
  • Sales rank: 1,367,878
  • File size: 3 MB

Meet the Author

John Yow is a freelance writer based in Acworth, Georgia, and former senior editor at Longstreet Press. He is author of The Armchair Birder: Discovering the Secret Lives of Familiar Birds.
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