Great Auk Islands; A Field Biologist in the Arctic
Describes the business of conducting biological studies on seabirds in remote parts of eastern Canada. Several themes are engagingly interwoven: the sheer beauty of the Arctic environment, the intriguing biology of its wildlife, and the discovery and exploitation of enormous seabird colonies, including the destruction of the Great Auk.
There are few books written about how scientists work, but here Tim Birkhead describes in personal detail the different facets of research and brings to life both the difficulties and the excitement of working in the Arctic. What is it like setting up a camp for four months on a remote and uninhabited island not far from the North Pole? How does it feel to commute daily by inflatable boat amidst icebergs to study-areas located on towering cliffs, set between ice-blue glaciers? What do you do when a Polar Bear decides that you have invaded its Arctic home? Why are the seabird colonies in the high Arctic so enormous? What do we know about the life- style of the extinct Great Auk? In 1992 Canada's legendary cod fishery was finally destroyed - what are the consequences of this for other wildlife? These are just a few of the questions dealt with in this book.
- ISBN: 9781408137864
- Author(s): Tim Birkhead
- Stock Code: 8137864
- Format: Hardback
- Illustrations: Colour illustrations, Colour photographs, Black & white photographs
- Pages: 275
- Published: 2010
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This book provides a thoroughly engaging and authoritative history of modern ornithology, tracing how the study of birds has been shaped by a succession of visionary and often controversial personalities and by the unique social and scientific contexts in which these extraordinary individuals worked. Begins in the middle of the nineteenth century when ornithology was a museum-based discipline focused almost exclusively on the anatomy, taxonomy, and classification of dead birds.