Thursday, September 6, 2012
1) Burton, Robert & John Croxall. A Field Guide to the Wildlife of South Georgia. 2012. Princeton University Press/WILDGuides. Paperback: 200 pages. Price: $24.95 U.S.
SUMMARY: South Georgia is rich in wildlife and spectacular scenery, and it is a prime destination spot on most Antarctic tours. This beautifully illustrated field guide depicts the birds, mammals, insects, flowering plants, and other vegetation found in this unique part of the world. It features 368 full-color photographs of more than 180 species, including 65 species of birds, 20 species of sea mammals, nearly 60 species of insects, and more than 40 species of flowering and nonflowering plants. Detailed species accounts describe key identification features, with information on status, behavior, threats, and distribution. This one-of-a-kind photographic guide also includes introductory chapters on South Georgia's geography, climate, ecology, and conservation.
This book includes:
*Features 368 photos of more than 180 species
*Covers birds, sea mammals, insects, and plants
*Provides detailed species accounts
*Includes chapters on geography, climate, ecology, and conservation
*The only photographic field guide to focus specifically on South Georgia
RECOMMENDATION: Visitors to the region will find this guide very useful!
2) Gehrman, Elizabeth. Rare Birds: The Extraordinary Tale of the Bermuda Petrel and the Man Who Brought It Back from Extinction. 2012. Beacon Press. Hardbound: 256 pages. Price: $26.95 U.S.
SUMMARY: The inspiring story of David Wingate, a living legend among birders, who brought the Bermuda petrel back from presumed extinction
David Wingate is known in Bermuda as the birdman and in the international conservation community as a living legend for single-handedly bringing back the cahow, or Bermuda Petrel-a seabird that flies up to 82,000 miles a year, drinking seawater and sleeping on the wing. For millennia, the birds came ashore every November to breed on this tiny North Atlantic island. But less than a decade after Bermuda's 1612 settlement, the cahows had vanished. Or so it was thought until the early 1900s, when tantalizing hints of their continued existence began to emerge. In 1951, two scientists invited fifteen-year-old Wingate along on a bare-bones expedition to find the bird. The team stunned the world by locating seven nesting pairs, and Wingate knew his life had changed forever. He would spend the next fifty years battling natural and man-made disasters, bureaucracy, and personal tragedy with single-minded devotion and antiestablishment outspokenness. In April 2009, Wingate saw his dream fulfilled, as the birds returned to Nonsuch, an island habitat that he had hand-restored, plant-by-plant, giving the Bermuda petrels the chance they needed in their centuries-long fight for survival.
RECOMMENDATION: For anyone with an interest in endangered species.