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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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Academic & Professional Books  Botany  Plants & Botany: Biology & Ecology

Birds, Bats, and Blooms The Coevolution of Vertebrate Pollinators and Their Plants

Coming Soon
By: Theodore H Fleming(Author)
288 pages, 14 colour & 14 b/w illustrations
Birds, Bats, and Blooms
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  • Birds, Bats, and Blooms ISBN: 9780816553723 Paperback Nov 2024 Available for pre-order
Price: £26.95
About this book Customer reviews Biography Related titles

About this book

Like gems flitting through the sky, hummingbirds attract our eye. But they are more than flash: they are critical pollinators in their ecosystems. Similarly in the darkness of night, nectar-feeding bats perform the same important ecological service as their colourful avian counterparts.

Vertebrate pollinators like bats and birds are keystone species of the Sonoran Desert. Biologist Theodore H. Fleming uses these species – found in the desert around his home – to address two big questions dealing with the evolution of life on Earth: How did these animals evolve, and how did they coevolve with their food plants?

A deeply thoughtful and researched dive into evolutionary history, Birds, Bats, and Blooms offers an engaging trip across evolutionary trajectories as it discusses nectar-feeding birds and bats and their coevolution as pollinators with flowering plants. The primary focus is on New World birds such as hummingbirds and their chiropteran counterparts (nectar-feeding bats in the family Phyllostomidae). It also discusses their Old World ecological counterparts, including sunbirds, honeyeaters, lorikeets, and nectar-feeding bats in the Pteropodidae family. Fleming also addresses the conservation status of these beautiful animals.

Through engaging prose, Fleming pulls together the most recent research in evolutionary biology and pairs it with accounts of his personal interactions with bats and birds. His account includes fourteen colour photographs taken by the author during his research trips around the world.

Customer Reviews


Theodore H. Fleming is a professor emeritus of biology at the University of Miami. He has spent decades studying mammals and their food plants in Panama, Costa Rica, Australia, Mexico, and Arizona. He lives in Tucson.

Coming Soon
By: Theodore H Fleming(Author)
288 pages, 14 colour & 14 b/w illustrations
Media reviews

"A fascinating and authoritative deep dive into the ecology, biology, and evolution of nectar-feeding birds and bats. The most significant comparative account of these two major groups of pollinators so far published."
– Jeff Ollerton, author of Birds & Flowers: An Intimate 50 Million Year Relationship

"Fleming's book delivers in a big way. Here is the place to learn about not only the origins of life on Earth but also the fascinating evolutionary trajectories of colorful nectar-imbibing birds and bats, both close to home and living in distant lands, from their origins millions of years ago until today. Their remarkable physiological adaptations are portrayed like only a renowned scientist and master storyteller can."
– Stephen L. Buchmann, author of What a Bee Knows: Exploring the Thoughts, Memories, and Personalities of Bees

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