289 pages, no illustrations
A first-person account of wild bear behavior that is both a thrilling animal story and a groundbreaking work of science. In the spring of 1993, Ben Kilham, a naturalist who lives in the woodlands of New Hampshire, began raising a pair of orphaned wild black bears. The experience changed his life. While spending thousands of hours with the cubs, Kilham discovered unknown facets of bear behavior that have radically revised our understanding of animal behavior. Now widely recognized for his contributions to wildlife science, Kilham reveals that bears are altruistic and cooperate with unrelated, even unknown individuals, while our closer relatives, the supposedly more highly evolved chimps, cooperate only within troops of recognizable members. Kilham, who turned a disability, dyslexia, to his advantage as a naturalist, offers fascinating insights into the emotional life of bears. His work – which has been featured in several National Geographic television specials – also illustrates the powerful black bear intelligence that has survived bounties and overhunting to make them North America's dominant omnivore, familiar to every reader. Beyond the natural history, he introduces individual bears who become enthralling and memorable characters. As in the bestselling books by Jane Goodall and Dian Fossey, Among the Bears explores the breaking down of mutual suspicion and building up of trust between species, with its hopeful implications for the shared future of humans and animals in the wild.
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Ben Kilham has been researching and living with black bears for nearly twenty years. He has become an expert in black bear behavior, as well as in rehabilitating orphaned and injured bears and reintroducing them to the wild. He is invited to lecture all over the United States and internationally. His previous book is Among the Bears, Raising Orphan Cubs in the Wild. Kilham and his work with black bears have been featured in five internationally televised documentaries, including National Geographic and Discovery Channel features, and he has appeared on The Today Show, Good Morning America, ABC Nightly News, ABC Nightly News International, The O'Reilly Factor, Fox News Daytime Edition, Inside Edition, The David Letterman Show, NBC Nightline, CBS Coast to Coast, Canadian Broadcasting Company Nightly News, and various other shows, as well as National Public Radio, and a host of nationally broadcast radio shows. He lives in Lyme, New Hampshire.
Ed Gray was the founding editor of the revered Gray's Sporting Journal, where he discovered and edited the early fiction of E. Annie Proulx, Rick Bass, and many others. He subsequently founded Graybooks Publishers and Aisle Seat Books. He is also the author of a dozen books of essays and other writings. Left in the Wind is his first novel. He lives in New Hampshire with his wife, Rebecca.