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The Thing With Feathers

The Surprising Lives of Birds, and What They Reveal About Being Human
Strycker, Noah K. (Book - 2014)
Average Rating: 4.5 stars out of 5.
The Thing With Feathers
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Explores "the lives of birds, illuminating their surprising world and deep connection with humanity"-- Provided by publisher.
Authors: Strycker, Noah K.
Title: The thing with feathers
the surprising lives of birds, and what they reveal about being human
Publisher: New York, New York :, Riverhead Books, a member of Penguin Group (USA),, 2014
Characteristics: xiv, 288 pages :,illustrations ;,22 cm
Statement of Responsibility: Noah Strycker
Contents: Body. Fly away home : how pigeons get around ; Spontaneous order : the curious magnetism of starling flocks ; The buzzard's nostril : sniffing out a turkey vulture's talents ; Snow flurries : owls, invasions, and wanderlust ; Hummingbird wars : implications of flight in the fast land
Mind. Fight or flights : what penguins are afraid of ; Beat generation : dancing parrots and our strange love of music ; Seeing red : when the pecking order breaks down ; Cache memory : how nutcrackers hoard information
Spirit. Magpie in the mirror ; reflections on avian self-awareness ; Arts and craftiness : the aesthetics of bowerbird seduction ; Fairy helpers : when cooperation is just a game ; Wandering hearts : the tricky question of albatross love
Summary: Explores "the lives of birds, illuminating their surprising world and deep connection with humanity"-- Provided by publisher.
ISBN: 1594486352
9781594486357
Branch Call Number: 598.07234 S928t 2014
Bibliography: Includes bibliographical references (pages [267]-280) and index
Subject Headings: Human-animal relationships Bird watching Anecdotes Birds Behavior
Topical Term: Human-animal relationships
Bird watching
Birds
LCCN: 2013030320
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Opinion

From Library Staff

This highly engaging work of nonfiction is stuffed with fascinating facts about birds.

Comment by: multcolib_alisonk Jun 18, 2014

If Strycker was talking about humans he'd be your go-to guy to get the latest dirt on your neighbors. And in fact, he is talking about your neighbors - your feathered neighbors. In human form that awe-inspiring, delicate creature the hummingbird would be an intimidating bully, likely to shake you... Read More »

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. Beautiful and wise, funny and insigh... Read More »


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Oct 24, 2014
  • DorisWaggoner rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

"The Thing with Feathers," (a quotation from Emily Dickenson bout hope) is a lovely, well written book about several species of birds, their characteristics, and how these characteristics relate to human characteristics. He mixes scientific literature, his own childhood curiosity (about how vultures find food), and poetic imagery (how albatrosses mate for life while spending most of their time alone on the wing). Having been interested in birds all my life, and read lots of books about birds, I found this probably the most informative about the species covered, and the most uplifting. A winner all around. I'll be looking for others by Stryker.

interesting tidbits,enjoyable,delightful reading

Jun 18, 2014
  • multcolib_alisonk rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

If Strycker was talking about humans he'd be your go-to guy to get the latest dirt on your neighbors. And in fact, he is talking about your neighbors - your feathered neighbors. In human form that awe-inspiring, delicate creature the hummingbird would be an intimidating bully, likely to shake you down for lunch money. Though there are rumors that the birds in the corner house are having extramarital affairs, the Albatrosses (though they are never home - they regularly make trips of thousands of miles without stopping) really do mate for life.
Strycker does a great job of introducing you to the secret lives of birds. You'll look at your feathered neighbors with a new eye after reading this book.

May 14, 2014
  • cr421 rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

this is a terrific read. The author gives us a birds eye view and makes the subject close and real. A most fun read indeed!!!

Apr 28, 2014
  • delfon rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

Fascinating easy,eantertaining read on the complexities of some species of Birds.<http://www.eBird.com> Author is an orthinologist himself, and has spent time in various environments studying these intriguing creatures; who, may be the sources of some Human habits. From finding home (Pigeons), theimportance of 7 and theHeisenberg model(starlings flocks) smelling food (buzzards), constant fighting and working to eat(hummingbirds), transient movers (Arctic Snow Owls), appreciating music and dance (Parrots), Fear (Penguins), Remembering up to 5,000 items(Nutcrackers), Self-recognition and trick plying (Magpies), building that ideal house(Bower birds), helping othes, altrusim in the wild (Fairy Wrens), Love for long life up to 100 years long (Abatross). Old books like Moonwalkding with Einstein, the Meme Machine,Game Theory (Tit for Tat) etc are mentioned, compared and related to 'the thing with feathers'.

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