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Most people dream of packing in their humdrum city life, selling up and heading off into the unknown for a life of adventure. For Ruth Miller and Alan Davies this dream became a reality, albeit with a twist; they decided to pack in their jobs, sell their house and take on the ultimate birder's challenge – to smash the world record for the number of species seen in one calender year. The Biggest Twitch is the story of their great expedition, searching for birds from Ecuador to Ethiopia via Argentina, Australia and Arizona.
We follow this birding odyssey as they rachet up the species and the stamps in their passports, sharing in amazing birding experiences such as monkey-hunting Harpy Eagles in the Brazilian rain forest, seedsnipes in the Peruvian highlands and lekking bustards in South Africa, all leading to the ultimate question – will they break the magic 4 000? Written in an accessible style, The Biggest Twitch will be of great interest to birders, readers of travel literature, and to people who simply enjoy a good adventure!
Ruth Miller and Alan Davies are self-confessed birding obsessives from north Wales. Alan is currently warden of the RSPB reserve at Conwy. His wife Ruth is a marketing consultant, and former Head of Trading for the RSPB. They dedicated one year of their lives to beating the birder's world record and smashing the seemingly impossible target of 4 000 species in a single calender year.
"[...] If you’ve ever wondered what it would be like to drop everything and go birding all over the world, then you should read The Biggest Twitch. That is, if you think you can resist the powerful encouragement to actually do so!"
– Grant McCreary (06-08-2012), read the full review at The Birder's Library
"There are casual birdwatchers and there are twitchers who'll fly halfway around the world to spot a cactus wren. Davies and Miller are the latter [...] entertaining anecdotes with real honesty [...] even non-bird-buffs may be inspired to get out the binoculars."
– Wanderlust (November 2010)
" [...] will make you dream of the destinations and the birds they saw"
– Birdwatch (November 2010)
"a great read"
–Real Travel (December 2010)
"It is the ideal companion for anyone setting off on a long plane or train journey."
– Sunday Express (January 2011)
"a fast-paced and enthralling read for birders everywhere"
– Birding World (vol. 23 2010)
"Birders and eco-tourists will enjoy this book!"
– Birdbooker report website (12th November 2010)