Non-Fic Picks: Nature

Posted May 6, 2016

Go wild with this week’s non-fic picks featuring new additions to our nature collection. 

Animal Internet: Nature and the Digital Revolution by Alexander Pschera

Did you know that over 50,000 creatures around the globe have been equipped with digital tracking devices?  Turtles, lions, butterflies, bats, and whales are just a few of the species that, unbeknownst to them, are collecting critical data that Homo sapiens are utilizing to monitor behavior, track migrations, and quantify population numbers.  With better information, scientists hope to aid conservation efforts as well as build better relationships with the wild world that surrounds us.  Imagine using a smartphone to experience wildlife or “liking” your favorite animal on Facebook for updates; how will our relationship with the creatures continue to evolve?  Using cultural and historical contexts, Pschera creates a dialogue between nature and technology that will broaden our perspective of the world.      

The Most Perfect Thing: Inside (and Outside) a Bird’s Egg by Tim Birkhead

Have you ever wondered why eggs are egg-shaped?  Or why birds’ eggs are colored the way they are?  In The Most Perfect Thing, ornithologist Tim Birkhead answers these questions and more about reproduction - one of life’s more perplexing enigmas.  Taking readers on a fascinating journey from the outside shell of an egg to the inside of the yolk, Birkhead and a number of naturalists and scientists explore how eggs are made, fertilized, developed, and hatched.  By studying the mysteries of fertilization in birds, we can better understand conception in animals and ultimately humans.  Thoughtful, thorough, and accessible The Most Perfect Thing is perfect for birders, nature enthusiasts, or those looking for a scientific adventure.

Vitamin N: The Essential Guide to a Nature-Rich Life by Richard Louv

In his new book Vitamin N, nature guru and advocate Richard Louv features 500 effective ways for parents, grandparents, and teachers to engage children with the natural world.  Neatly organized as a guidebook, Vitamin N is formatted for readers to easily find the ideal project, game or activity with regards to season, space, time, location, and financial costs.  From simple, inexpensive activities like cloud spotting, leaf pressing, and stargazing to more involved endeavors such as camping, hiking, and horseback riding, there’s something that both children and adults will enjoy.  As Louv points out, connecting with nature in an urban environment may be challenging, but the mental, emotional, and physical benefits are well-worth it.  If you need help getting started, check Vitamin N today.        


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