Fairy-wrens and Grasswrens : Maluridae (Bird Families of the World, number 4)

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9780198546900: Fairy-wrens and Grasswrens : Maluridae (Bird Families of the World, number 4)
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The brilliant plumage, jaunty gait, and acceptance of man-made suburban gardens as a suitable habitat make fairy-wrens a favorite with anyone lucky enough to see them. They are small--no larger than 40 grams--and feed mainly on the ground or in low vegetation. Fairy-wrens have a fascinating social organization, with groups consisting of long-lasting pairs and their progeny, retained long after independence. This book is the culmination of forty years of field studies by the author. It follows up the work published by Richard Schodde in 1982, while emphasizing more recent interest in cooperative breeding and sexual selection. The first eight chapters look at the family as a whole, describing their taxonomy, evolution, biology, behavior, and conservation. Next are accounts of 25 species, each one giving comprehensive information on the bird in its natural state. Distribution maps, sonograms, and a full glossary are included; all species are illustrated in color in superb plates specially commissioned for this volume. It will be a valuable reference to ornithologists, bird-watchers, and anyone involved in animal behavior.

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About the Author:

Ian Rowley is at CSIRO Division of Wildlife and Ecology. Eleanor Russell is at CSIRO Division of Wildlife and Ecology. Peter Marsack is at Freelance Artist.

Review:

`...it provides an excellent and clearly written introduction to the bizarre lives of the Maluridae, as well as carefully compiled summaries of life histories, morphology, plumage variation, communication and other aspects of behaviour...this book is an important scientific contribution and
should be part of the library of anybody interested in ornithology or behavioural ecology.'
Andrew Cockburn, IBIS 140: 541-556, 1998.

`This is a scholarly, fully referenced treatise on the Maluridae, but is easy to read or to dip into to explore specific aspects of the birds' biology.'
Peter Ryan Africa Birds and Birding 3:4, 1998.

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