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Posted by: atowhee | March 17, 2014

REVIEW: TEN THOUSAND BIRDS

TEN THOUSAND BIRDS. Ornithology Since Darwin. By Tim Birkhead, Jo Wimpenny & Bob Montgomerie. Princeton University Press. 2014. 544 pages. $45. also available as an eBook.
If you are interested in how the science of ornithology has evolved you can’t find a better, more readable history.10000 BIRDS You can learn about the men and women, famous and obscure, who made all the many discoveries that underlie what we know about birds today. You can follow the trai of discoveries and theories laid down by John Ostrom after 1970 when he began studying Archaeopteryx.

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caracara640h The book also summarizes much recent research, like the tracking of the long-distance migration of the Bar-tailed Godwit across the Pacific. Some of my favorite sections are brief autobiographical sketches by several of the leading ornithologists on the globe today. In almost every one you begin to see how each generation’s research and discoveries builds on what’s been done before. You can see science as a long search for the next piece of the infinite puzzle that is nature.

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