"Book of Birds, Introduction to Ornithology" is a one-book basic course in ornithology that should answer most of the questions you might have about birds. It would be a helpful addition to your birding library. Author John Faaborg is professor emeritus in biology at the University of Missouri. Claire Faaborg provided photos, maps and tables. Texas A&M University Press, 2020, hardcover, 455 pages, indexed, $65.
'The Bedside Book of Birds'
Stories, fables, brief adventures, poems, quotes, folk tales, myths, sketches, essays, parables, paintings, proverbs, aboriginal art, legends, songs, drawings, birds, birds and more birds from around the world, are collected here by the late Canadian author and philosopher Graeme Gibson. Not a new release, but an avian miscellany worth every penny for your bedside, published by Doubleday, 369 pages, hardcover, $40.
A man in Cleveland, watching gulls, noticed a ring-billed gull with a leg band. Those are metal bands used to identify individual birds, usually to track movement. Curious, he photographed the bird, five photos allowing him to piece together the band's number. He sent this to the Bird Banding Lab run by the U.S. Geological Survey. They found the record for this bird, and told the photographer that his gull was 28 years and 9 months old. It had been banded as a chick in Toronto in 1992. (From the Birding Community e-Bulletin for April. http://tinyurl.com/E-bulletinSIGNUP.)
Bald eagle recovery
In 1963 there were 417 known nesting bald eagles in the Lower 48 states. The species was considered on the brink of extinction. Today there are an estimated 316,700 individual eagles and 71,400 nesting pairs in the Lower 48. This amazing recovery was made possible by various protective laws, particularly the one banning the chemical DDT. Sometimes we do make conservation and environmental progress. (From the Birding Community e-Bulletin.)