Friday, September 21, 2007

What I'm Reading this Week

What are YOU reading this week?

While we think of showy fall foliage as the the mark of changing seasons, late summer and fall bring opportunities for a different kind of viewing: migrating birds may be seen in many areas near your home.

The recent documentary film, Winged Migration, follows the migration paths of birds all around the world. Here is another fascinating telling of this subject, that will inspire you to grab your binoculars and head for the closest forest preserve this fall.

Songbird Journeys by Miyoko Chu

Miyoko Chu, an ornithologist at Cornell, chronicles the migrations of songbirds through all four seasons. We do not expect nonfiction to read like detective fiction, but this book is a page-turner I could not put down.
Chu draws us in with fascinating descriptions of these amazing birds and their special abilities, but equally amazing are methods developed by scientists and dedicated amateurs who study them—trekking to distant locales, following, in cars and airplanes, individual birds outfitted with transmitters.
Songbird Journeys also provides resources for observing migrating birds and provides lists of citizen-science projects and resources for amateurs birders.
To find the best local spots for birding in Illinois, I recommend, Birding in Illinois by Sheryl DeVore.
If this book hooks you in, consider joining a local birding group, like the CLC Birding Club. We are currently planning vists each weekend through mid-November (weather permitting).
I hope you will share with me and others what you think of this selection and what you are reading this week.

1 comment:

Melissa said...

I've just finished two WONDERFUL books about marriage. Both are short, lyrically written novels about two very, very different relationships. I highly recommend "On Chesil Beach" by Ian McEwan and "The End of the Alphabet" by C.S. Richardson. My current read is "Stoner" by John Edw. Williams; it takes place in the early 1900s at a midwestern university. So far, it reminds me of a Midwestern male Anita Brookner (that's a good thing!)