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One Man's Owl


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About the Author

Bernd Heinrich is Professor of Zoology at the University of Vermont and the author of several books, which include Bumblebee Economics (Harvard) and Ravens in Winter (Summit). Alice Calaprice abridged and revised this edition of One Man's Owl. The first edition of the book was a selection of the Nature Book Society and the Library of Science.


This is not another story of well-intentioned but misguided incarceration of wild foundlings (most of which are kept in violation of the law and are better left alone). Heinrich ( In a Patch of Fireweed ) rescued a young great horned owl after its nest was destroyed by a storm and kept it in a semi-wild state for three years. His entertaining diary of the owl's behavior is also a discourse on natural history, with references to technical literature, as well as musings and philosophy. Heinrich is especially interested in how owls acquire their skills as predators and why smaller birds swarm around them in the daytime. An excellent book that should have wide appeal. Nature Book Society and Library of Science selection. Henry T. Armistead, Thomas Jefferson Univ., Philadelphia

"[Bernd Heinrich] tells the tender story of a very small animal experiment. The experiment is clearly a ruse--an excuse for indulging the infatuation that blossoms when a man stumbles over a baby owl. Its tiny talon sticking out of the snow catches his attention... Mr. Heinrich ... knows only too well that naturalists take a dim view of the urge to remove a bird from the wild and take it home to nurse. This book, complete with affectionate drawings and photographs by the author, may serve as his apology."--Bonnie Bilyeu Gordon, The New York Times Book Review "Bernd Heinrich is a nature lover, a scholar, and a fine writer... One Man's Owl straddles the line between formal science and sheer love of the wild, and does it beautifully."--David M. Graber, The Los Angeles Times Book Review

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