192 pages, 120 colour photos
This beautifully illustrated book on the world's owls explores their behaviour and lifecycle as well as the various owl families, and showcases beautiful photography from around the world. It also looks at threats facing owls and conservation issues that are relevant. The text is serious but also readable and accessible to a wide audience.
The introduction includes sections on hunting, courtship, breeding and adaptations such as head rotation, facial disk, soft feathers for silent flight, ears, ear tufts, eyes, talons, bill, camouflaged plumage and vocalisations.
There is a chapter on each owl family, from the huge eagle owls to the diminutive pygmy owls and owlets, and including everything from the familiar barn owls, which are found around the world, to those species and families with special features, such as the fishing owls, Burrowing Owl and Snowy Owl which thrives on the freezing Arctic tundra.
Closing chapters look at owls and humans (banding, falconry, etc), threats and conservation and give a comprehensive checklist of Owl species and subspecies.
In short, this is the most up-to-date book of its size available. It will appeal to all birdwatchers and nature-lovers, as well as to falconers, and to the general public as a gift book.
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Jim Duncan is an owl expert based in Canada. He is adjunct professor at the University of Winnipeg and Director of the Wildlife Branch of the Government of Manitoba. He has banded more than 2,500 owls during the course of his research and published numerous books and papers on the subject.