Saturday, June 20, 2020

New Titles

1) Raffaele, Herbert A. et al.. Birds of the West Indies Second Edition. 2020. Princeton University Press. Paperback: 288 pages. Price: $24.95 U.S.
PUBLISHER'S SUMMARY: An updated edition of the acclaimed field guide to the spectacular birds of the West Indies
     Birds of the West Indies is the first field guide that covers and depicts all birds known to occur in the region, including infrequently occurring and introduced forms. Now fully updated and expanded, this stunningly illustrated book features detailed accounts of more than 600 species, describing identification field marks, range, status, voice, and habitat. There are more than 100 beautiful color plates that depict plumages of all species―including those believed to have recently become extinct―as well as distribution maps, a color code for endemic birds, and an incisive introduction that discusses avifaunal changes in the West Indies in the past fifteen years and the importance of conservation.
RECOMMENDATION: A must have for those birding the West Indies. Also available from Princeton U. Press: Timefulness (paperback), The Cat: A Natural History, Bird Love, Spiders of the World, Britain's Birds (2nd edition), and Europe's Dragonflies.

2) Wagner, Eric. After the Blast: The Ecological Recovery of Mount St. Helens. 2020. University of Washington Press. Hardbound: 239 pages. Price: $29.95 U.S.
PUBLISHER'S SUMMARY: On May 18, 1980, people all over the world watched with awe and horror as Mount St. Helens erupted. Fifty-seven people were killed and hundreds of square miles of what had been lush forests and wild rivers were to all appearances destroyed.
     Ecologists thought they would have to wait years, or even decades, for life to return to the mountain, but when forest scientist Jerry Franklin helicoptered into the blast area a couple of weeks after the eruption, he found small plants bursting through the ash and animals skittering over the ground. Stunned, he realized he and his colleagues had been thinking of the volcano in completely the wrong way. Rather than being a dead zone, the mountain was very much alive.
RECOMMENDATION: A must have for anyone with an interest in Mt. St. Helens.

3) Williams, Wendy. The Language of Butterflies: How Thieves, Hoarders, Scientists, and Other Obsessives Unlocked the Secrets of the World's Favorite Insect. 2020. Simon and Schuster. Hardbound: 224 pages. Price: $26.00 U.S.
PUBLISHER'S SUMMARY: In this fascinating book from the New York Times bestselling author of The Horse, Wendy Williams explores the lives of one of the world’s most resilient creatures—the butterfly—shedding light on the role that they play in our ecosystem and in our human lives.
     Butterflies are one of the world’s most beloved insects. From butterfly gardens to zoo exhibitions, they are one of the few insects we’ve encouraged to infiltrate our lives. Yet, what has drawn us to these creatures in the first place? And what are their lives really like? In this groundbreaking book, New York Times bestselling author and science journalist Wendy Williams reveals the inner lives of these “flying flowers”—creatures far more intelligent and tougher than we give them credit for.
      Monarch butterflies migrate thousands of miles each year from Canada to Mexico. Other species have learned how to fool ants into taking care of them. Butterflies’ scales are inspiring researchers to create new life-saving medical technology. Williams takes readers to butterfly habitats across the globe and introduces us to not only various species, but to the scientists who have dedicated their lives to studying them.
      Coupled with years of research and knowledge gained from experts in the field, this accessible “butterfly biography” explores the ancient partnership between these special creatures and humans, and why they continue to fascinate us today. Touching, eye-opening, and incredibly profound, The Language of Butterflies reveals the critical role they play in our world.
RECOMMENDATION: If you enjoyed the author's other works you should enjoy this one!