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Australian birds have a very special place in the evolution of modern birds. They are known to live unusually long lives, form long-lasting bonds and are overall exceptionally intelligent. The question is why this may be so. In this highly compelling new book, Professor Gisela Kaplan explores the evolution of particular cognitive and social abilities that make the emotional and sex lives of birds work to their advantage. How Australian birds actually choose mates makes fascinating reading as the author uncovers motivations and attractions in partner choice that are far more complex than was once believed. She also shows how humans and birds may be more alike in attachment and mating behaviour than we think – despite the enormous evolutionary distance between us. For birdwatchers, researchers and nature lovers alike, and based on a wealth of original and cited research, Bird Bonds is a valuable resource and a beguiling insight into the world of the birds around us.
Gisela Kaplan (PhD, PhD, Hon.DSc) is a field biologist and Emeritus Professor of Animal Behaviour at the University of New England, Armidale, New South Wales and also serves as Honorary Professor at the Queensland Brain Institute. She has authored more than 250 research articles and has conducted groundbreaking research into vocal learning, communication and cognition in birds and other vertebrates. Her books include award-winning and bestselling titles such as Australian Magpie (2019), Tawny Frogmouth (2018), Bird Minds (2015) and Famous Australian Birds (2004). For the past two decades, she has also raised and rehabilitated injured native birds. Her vast experience with native birds in their natural environment is only surpassed by her passion for all things to do with native birds.