An entertaining and profound look at the lives of birds, illuminating their surprising world—and deep connection with humanity.
Birds are highly intelligent animals, yet their intelligence is dramatically different from our own and has been little understood. As we learn more about the secrets of bird life, we are unlocking fascinating insights into memory, relationships, game theory, and the nature of intelligence itself.
The Thing with Feathers explores the astonishing homing abilities of pigeons, the good deeds of fairy-wrens, the influential flocking abilities of starlings, the deft artistry of bowerbirds, the extraordinary memories of nutcrackers, the lifelong loves of albatrosses, and other mysteries—revealing why birds do what they do, and offering a glimpse into our own nature.
Drawing deep from personal experience, cutting-edge science, and colorful history, Noah Strycker spins captivating stories about the birds in our midst and shares the startlingly intimate coexistence of birds and humans. With humor, style, and grace, he shows how our view of the world is often, and remarkably, through the experience of birds. You’ve never read a book about birds like this one.
|Publisher:||Penguin Publishing Group|
|Product dimensions:||5.90(w) x 8.30(h) x 1.20(d)|
|Age Range:||18 Years|
About the Author
Noah Strycker has studied birds in some of the world’s most extreme environments, from the high Arctic to the Amazon jungle and Australian bush, and is an associate editor of the American Birding Association’s magazine, Birding. His previous book, Among Penguins, describes a summer in an isolated Antarctic field camp. Noah writes, lectures, and lives near Eugene, Oregon, between field seasons.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
I received this book compliments of Riverhead Books, via Library Thing’s Early Reviewers book giveaway of an uncorrected Proof. I owe them many thanks for introducing me to a new author. I’ve gone back and read several reviews of Mr. Stryker’s new book and I don’t know that I could provide anything more than most these reviewers. I will say that I totally enjoyed his writing and will be looking for his first book Among Penguins, and perhaps even check out his work as associate editor of the American Birding Association’s flagship magazine, Birding. I tried to pick out my favorite stories but really, I enjoyed them all; from the Murmurration of Starling flocks right through to the “Wandering Hearts” of albatrosses. I even read the man’s end of book footnotes with fascination. It’s a wonderful read, and would be almost perfect while sitting outside with binoculars among the birds of your backyard. I think that there’s only one thing that could make this book perfect, and that would be as an interactive ebook, linking to the variety of subjects the author mentions, the Youtube videos, etc. Several times while reading, I pulled myself away to my tablet or desktop to look up the colorful bowers of the Great Bowerbirds of Australia, or the murmurration of the starlings, or the dancing parrots. But this quibble aside, I enjoyed the book thoroughly and will be rereading it soon, this time pencil in hand as I commit the Librarian’s worst nightmare – marking the book up with notes.
This is my new favorite book. I just picked it up from the library, intrigued by the Emily Dickinson title, and I am so glad I did. It is a wonderful, informative, humane book. That it was written by a 28 year-old amazes me. I plan to buy a copy for myself and a couple for gifts. I have always loved birds, but knew nothing about them. A whole new world has opened up for me! Highly recommended!!