272 pages, colour photos, colour illustrations
Shorebirds of New Zealand is a beautiful, informative and lyrical account of the many shorebirds found here – those living and breeding in the same area year after year, those that migrate within New Zealand, and those whose migrations link the hemispheres. It examines the lifecycles, habits and histories of New Zealand's shorebirds, such as red knots (some 50,000 of which reach New Zealand from Siberia annually), or red-necked stints (birds the size of a sparrow that make a similar journey), and New Zealand's own shorebirds – stilts and oystercatchers, terns and gulls, dotterels and wrybills, snipes and godwits.
Author Keith Woodley connects these shorebirds with everyday people and the environment, looking into our social and cultural values, the work of researchers and community conservation groups, as well as the ways in which our lives impact those of shorebirds – both harmoniously and harmfully. Shorebirds of New Zealand is a significant and thought-provoking book, with many stories to tell and a strong environmental message elegantly stated.
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For Keith Woodley, full-time manager at the Miranda Shorebird Centre on the Firth of Thames, New Zealand, a fledgling curiosity in birds very quickly led to a strong interest in ornithology. As a result he became 'born again' – as a bird-watcher. He has since hosted thousands of people at the Centre and given hundreds of talks on the subject of shorebird migration. He is the author of Godwits: Long-haul champions (Raupo/Penguin, 2009).