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Pete Dunne has been watching birds since he was seven years old. But not just watching-deeply absorbing every nuance of color, markings, shape, flight, and song; all the subtle clues that can identify a bird barely glimpsed among the highest branches in fading twilight. With the same skill, he has been observing and writing about birding and birders for over twenty years, using humor, sentiment, occasional sarcasm, and unashamed passion for his chosen profession to explore why birdwatching is so irresistibly compelling to so many people.
This book brings together thirty-two vintage essays that Dunne originally wrote for publications such as American Birds, Bird Watcher's Digest, Birder's World, Birding, Living Bird, the New Jersey edition of the Sunday New York Times, WildBird, and Wild Bird News. Encounters with birds rare and common is their shared theme, through which Dunne weaves stories of his family and friends, reflections on the cycles of nature, and portraits of unforgettable birders whose paths have crossed his, ranging from Roger Tory Peterson to a life-battered friend who finds solace in birding. A cliff-hanger story of the bird that got away gives this book its title.
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A lifelong resident of New Jersey, Pete Dunne is Director of the New Jersey Audubon Society’s Cape May Bird Observatory in Cape May Point, New Jersey, and consultant to the Peterson birding field guide series.From Publishers Weekly:
Friends and relatives, birds and birders, life as he sees it?Dunne covers all these topics, moving easily from humor and poignance to reflective wisdom in these 30-odd essays and stories gathered from such magazines as Audubon, American Birds and Bird Watcher's Digest. Both novice and full-fledged birders will get that special insiders' glow from reading essays like "Getting a Leg Up on Bird-Sighting Sheets," in which Dunne parallels the behavior of his dog, Moose, with that of dedicated birders: Moose sniffs, ponders, then makes his mark. Birders check the bird-sighting lists, review the good birds listed, then "raid a pen and sprinkle the page with hot new entries." Dunne is as well attuned to people as he is to birds. He understands when his brother, Mike, eschews the sport after observing the obsessive rituals of birding enthusiasts. He appreciates his wife's West-of-the-Rockies sensibilities: "To her mind, every day she wakes in the East is a day begun with compromise." Many times Dunne mentions the solace people find in nature when all else fails, while several essays outline the development of Dunne's attitude toward nature and its exigencies. He struggles with the concept of nature as "a regular killing field" and concludes, "I have chosen instead to accept life's pattern as it has evolved and hope, even if I sometimes find it hard to believe, that there is a reason." His book should not be hidden in the birding section of bookstores, for these stories show us that Dunne is as striking a storyteller as he is a naturalist. Illustrations not seen by PW.
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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Book Description Condition: New. Brand new copy. Ships fast secure, expedited available!. Seller Inventory # 3UBDHI0005HD
Book Description Univ of Texas Pr, 1998. Hardcover. Condition: Brand New. 138 pages. 9.00x6.00x0.75 inches. In Stock. Seller Inventory # __0292715994
Book Description Condition: New. New. Seller Inventory # STR-0292715994