The Birding Life: A Passion for Birds at Home and Afield Hardcover
Birds are both marvels of nature and artistic muses. The mere chance of sighting a prized species has long motivated human observers to brave early mornings, long days, and severe conditions. Birds have also inspired artists to honor them in imagery throughout the ages. In the form of bird-themed art and décor, the beauty of winged creatures informs the “nests” and working spaces of the birders, artists, collectors, and conservationists featured in the more than twenty delightfully written stories in The Birding Life. Through evocative writing and two hundred gorgeous color photographs, the authors of The Sporting Life and Living with Dogs capture the beauty, intrigue, and fun of birding—at home, in the country, in the city, and out in the field—with a special focus on the nostalgic memorabilia that signals devotion to birds of all kinds.
In Part I: Birders in Birdland, you will meet Alexander Wilson, John James Audubon, and Roger Tory Peterson, the iconic figures responsible for first documenting America’s native birds for the public, and Kenn Kaufman and David Allen Sibley, authors of today’s most well-known American birding guides. You will visit Buck Hollow Ranch in Concan, Texas, where more than two hundred species of birds, including endangered species unique to the Hill Country, pass through in prime season. From there you will travel to New York City to meet thirteen-year-old Alexander Gottdiener, a licensed falconer who enjoys birdwatching in Central Park and in more exotic climes.
Part II: Bird Houses welcomes you into the homes and studios of bird enthusiasts, artists, and collectors. In Houston, Texas, artists Lisa Ludwig and Joseph Havel’s home, which includes an aviary for injured birds and a studio where Lisa creates bronze bird-nest sculptures, serves as a tranquil retreat from the bustling city. Kristof Zyskowski, manager of the vertebrate collections at Yale’s Peabody Museum of Natural History, gives you a behind-the-scenes peek at the museum’s meticulously curated collection, which includes specimens from about 70 percent of the world’s bird species.
In Part III: At Home with Birds, you will meet homeowners who have decorated their personal nests to reflect their love of avian life. In antiques dealers Paul and Sharon Mrozinski’s home, Victorian collections of specimen eggs and nests punctuate an eclectic mix of antique furniture and art. The Brooklyn loft shared by young sisters Hollister and Porter Hovey is a hipster ode to nature, featuring taxidermy and an assortment of curios, fabrics, and furniture that reflects their collective adoration of flora and fauna.
Field trips throughout the book give readers a taste of the authentic experience of birders in bird-rich locations in Maine, Texas, North Dakota—and New York City’s greatest sanctuary, Central Park.
Sidebars throughout the book cover how to start a birding hobby, what to pack in your birding bag, what to pack in your birding bag, what garden plantings best attract birds to the home, and what bird enthusiasts are wearing and collecting. An extensive resource section offers countless options for further exploration.
A gorgeous volume and endless source of inspiration for lovers of birding and of bird-themed design alike, The Birding Life shows myriad ways to reflect your passion in your home.
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- Monthly real-world eating plans
- Hot and healthy workouts that you can fit into a busy schedule
- Ideas to up the feel-good moments in your day
- Fun, easy-to-understand definitions for words in every letter of the alphabet.
- Silly cartoons make definitions really stick.
- A humorous approach encourages kids to let loose with language, experiment and have fun.
- 384 pages of laughter & learning.
- And more! There are hours of fun words and their meanings to explore with your kids.
Examines the rise and fall of Ireland's economy due to the global financial crisis of 2008, incompetence, and political corruption.
The death of the Celtic tiger is not an extinction event to trouble naturalists. There was, in fact nothing natural about this tiger, if it ever really existed. The "Irish Economic miracle" was built on good old-fashioned subsidies (from the European Union) and the simple fact that until the 1980s Ireland was by the standards of the developed world so economically backward that the only way was up. And as it began to catch up to European and American averages, the Irish economy could boast some seemingly remarkable statistics. These lured in investors, the Irish deregulated and all but abandoned financial oversight, and a great Irish financial ceilidh began. It would last for a decade. When the global financial crash of 2008 arrived it struck Ireland harder than anywhere - even Iceland looked like a model of rectitude compared to the fiasco that stretched from Cork to Dublin. There was an avalanche of statistics as toxic as the property-based assets that lay beneath many of them: * The International Monetary Fund was predicting that Ireland's Gross Domestic Product (GDP) would shrink by 13.5 per cent in 2009 and 2010 - the worst performance among all the advanced economies and one of the worst ever recorded in peacetime in the developed world. * Government debt almost doubled in a year. * In May 2008, EURO13.5 million was paid for a 450-acre farm in Warrenstown, County Meath - one of the highest prices ever paid for agricultural land anywhere in the world. By 2009 the level of debt among Irish households and companies was the highest in the European Union. * The country's gross indebtedness was larger than Japan's, which has thirty times the population. * Between 1994 and 2006, the average second-hand house price in Dublin increased from EURO82,772 to EURO512,461 - a rise of 519 per cent. By 2009 Irish house prices had fallen more rapidly than any others in Europe. * With a fifth of its office spaces empty, Dublin had the highest vacancy rate of any European capital and was rated as having the worst development and investment potential of twenty-seven European cities. * The Irish stock exchange fell by 68 per cent in 2008 * The average Irish family had lost almost half its financial assets * Unemployment rose faster than in any other Western European country, increasing by 85 per cent in a year. * Ireland's bad bank, the National Assets Management Agency (Nama), which had to take over EURO90 billion in loans to developers from banks that would otherwise be insolvent holds more assets [sic] than any publicly quoted property company in the world, dwarfing giants such as GE Capital Real Estate and Morgan Stanley Real Estate, which own assets of EURO60 billion and EURO48 billion respectively. And under all this rubble lay the corpse of the Celtic Tiger. How Ireland managed to achieve such a spectacular implosion is a stunning story of corruption, carelessness and venality, told with passion and fury by one of Ireland's most respected journalists and commentators.