Cerulean Blues: A Personal Search for a Vanishing Songbird

Cerulean Blues: A Personal Search for a Vanishing Songbird

by Katie Fallon

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Cerulean Blues: A Personal Search for a Vanishing Songbird by Katie Fallon

Taking the reader from the mountains of Appalachia to a coffee plantation near Bogotá, Colombia, this investigation into the plight of the cerulean warbler—a tiny migratory songbird—describes its struggle to survive in ever-shrinking bands of suitable habitat. This elusive creature—a favorite among bird watchers and the fastest-declining warbler species in the United States—has lost three percent of its total population each year since 1966. This precipitous decline means that today there are 80 percent fewer ceruleans than 40 years ago, and their numbers continue to drop because of threats including deforestation, global warming, and mountaintop-removal coal mining. With scientific rigor and a sense of wonder, Fallon charts their path across more than 2000 miles and shows how the fate of a creature weighing less than an ounce is vitally linked to that of our own.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780983011156
Publisher: Ruka Press
Publication date: 10/18/2011
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 224
File size: 6 MB

About the Author

Katie Fallon has had nonfiction pieces in a variety of magazines and journals, including Appalachian Heritage, Isotope: A Journal of Literary Nature and Science Writing, and River Teeth: A Journal of Nonfiction Narrative. Her essay “Lost,” published in The Fourth River, was nominated for a Pushcart Prize in 2008. She teaches creative writing at West Virginia University. She lives in Morgantown, West Virginia.

Table of Contents

Interpreters of Cerulean Tom Will viii

Introduction 1


Pioneers 9

Under the Open Sky 17

Cerulean Blues 26

Sanctuary 37

Afield 48

Up Close and Personal 56

Ceruleomorphizing 69

Made in the Shade 78

Almost Level 86

Almost Heaven 97


Cumberland Gap 113

Empty Nests 120

Fledging 133

Long journeys 144

The Only Risk is Wanting to Stay 151

San Vicente de Chucuri 159

The Sky-Blue Little Queen 171

Full Circle 187

Epilogue: Help Save the Cerulean Warbler 191

Bibliography: Works Cited or Consulted 195

Acknowledgements 201

About the Author 205

Index 206

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