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In Incredible Journeys, award-winning author David Barrie takes us on a tour of the cutting-edge science of animal navigation, where breakthroughs are allowing scientists to unravel, for the first time, how animals as various as butterflies, birds, crustaceans, fish, reptiles and even people find their way.
Weaving interviews with leading experts on animal behaviour with the groundbreaking discoveries of Nobel-Prize winning neuroscientists, Barrie shines a light on the astounding skills of animals of every stripe. Dung beetles that steer by the light of the Milky Way. Ants and bees that navigate using patterns of light invisible to humans. Sea turtles, spiny lobsters and moths that find their way using the Earth's magnetic field. Salmon that return to their birthplace by following their noses. Baleen whales that swim thousands of miles while holding a rock-steady course and birds that can locate their nests on a tiny island after crisscrossing an entire ocean. There's a stunning diversity of animal navigators out there, often using senses and skills we humans don't have access to ourselves. Incredible Journeys reveals the wonders of these animals in a whole new light.
David Barrie grew up on the south coast of England where he fell in love with sailing and – in particular – the art of navigation. At the age of 19 David crossed the Atlantic in the 35-foot yacht 'Saecwen' and the following year competed in the 2000-mile Observer Two-Handed Round Britain Race in Shamaal II – a Contessa 26, one of the smallest entries. In 1981 he sailed his own Contessa 32 from Lymington to the Azores and back, and in 1984 took part as navigator in the China Sea Race from Hong Kong to Manila. In recent years he has cruised in the Hebrides, Norway, the Caribbean and British Columbia. He is a Fellow of the Royal Institute of Navigation and a member of the Royal Cruising Club. David studied Experimental Psychology and Philosophy at Oxford University. His working life has been varied: deck hand on a ferry, diplomat, intelligence analyst, arts adminstrator and campaigner. The great great nephew of the playwright J.M. Barrie, he is married with two daughters and lives in London.