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British Wildlife is the leading natural history magazine in the UK, providing essential reading for both enthusiast and professional naturalists and wildlife conservationists. Published eight times a year, British Wildlife bridges the gap between popular writing and scientific literature through a combination of long-form articles, regular columns and reports, book reviews and letters.

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Conservation Land Management (CLM) is a quarterly magazine that is widely regarded as essential reading for all who are involved in land management for nature conservation, across the British Isles. CLM includes long-form articles, events listings, publication reviews, new product information and updates, reports of conferences and letters.

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Academic & Professional Books  Ornithology  Birds: General

A History of Birds

By: Simon L Wills(Author)
180 pages, 120 colour & b/w photos and colour & b/w illustrations
A History of Birds
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  • A History of Birds ISBN: 9781526701558 Paperback Nov 2017 Not in stock: Usually dispatched within 1-2 weeks
Price: £16.99
About this book Customer reviews Biography Related titles

About this book

Even the most well-informed wildlife enthusiasts will be entertained by the stories and fascinating facts in this beautifully illustrated book. Our ancestors were as interested in birds as we are, but often for different reasons. They hunted, tamed, worshipped and depicted birds, and even bestowed magical properties upon them. Why did ancient writers consider the sparrow such a lustful creature? Which bird was killed and hung up to predict the weather? And what was known as the arse-foot?

Wildlife photographer and history journalist Simon Wills explores the intriguing and at times bizarre stories behind our relationship with birds. Find out why robins feature on Christmas cards, the motivation for the Romans special relationship with woodpeckers, and how Mozart was persuaded to keep a pet starling. What bird did Florence Nightingale carry around in her pocket? How did the blue tit get its name? Whole careers have been created around birds from falconers to ostrich farmers and birds have had great symbolic importance too. Discover, for example, why Raleigh bicycles carry the logo of a heron and why church lecterns are often in the shape of an eagle.

If you enjoy wildlife, then A History of Birds is full of surprises. Pigeons were trained to carry messages in wartime, but did you know that gulls were taught to hunt for U-boats? And which American president's parrot started swearing at his funeral?

Customer Reviews


Simon Wills is a history journalist and genealogist who writes regularly for magazines such as Your Family History and Family Tree. He has appeared in the TV programme Who Do You Think You Are? and contributes to the magazine and annual live show of the same name. He is also a dedicated wildlife photographer, and all the photographs in this book were taken by him.

By: Simon L Wills(Author)
180 pages, 120 colour & b/w photos and colour & b/w illustrations
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