What is BABINA?
Being a Bird in North America (BABINA) is a new book from conservation biologist Robert Alvo on the current state of birds in North America. This volume features over 200 species accounts filled with original cartoons, photography, and up-to-date conservation information. BABINA focuses on the unique and fascinating traits of each species, which makes it ideal for seasoned birders and amateur bird lovers alike.
What Other Readers have Written (see more details in “The Book” in the main menu and scroll down, or in Links to Full (and other) Book Reviews below)
I am a conservation biologist, lifelong birder, and avid consumer of bird and natural history books, but I learned new and fascinating facts about each species in Rob’s well-researched species accounts. I recommend this book without hesitation to birders and non-birders alike. —Dr. Larry Master, retired Chief Zoologist of NatureServe (an offshoot of The Nature Conservancy (U.S.A.)), New York.
There is precious little humour and not enough conservation information about birds in a popular format. Robert Alvo’s Being a Bird in North America tackles both. —Steven Price, President, Bird Studies Canada, Ontario.
I’m grateful that Rob Alvo invited NatureServe to share information for the book, and I’m proud to display it in my office. —Mary L. Klein, President and CEO, NatureServe
The array of facts presented for species after species serve as a primer for many aspects of ornithology. —Dr. Dennis Paulson, retired Director of the Slater Museum of Natural History, University of Puget Sound, and author of Shorebirds of North America and other field guides. Washington state.
Extremely well done and readable for a variety of age groups, including non-birders. —Bryan J. Smith, Birder and Photographer, Arizona.
It’s worth taking a few moments before opening the book to examine the eye-catching cover and ponder the problems that are identified there… Right from the start, Alvo neatly circumvents two concerns expressed by birders across the continent… The 206 species accounts include a wide range of information so they never become monotonous or repetitive. —Cindy Cartwright, Ontario Field Ornithologists, Ontario.
I could figure out any words I couldn’t understand [from the context]. My younger brother, who is only seven, could understand the information thanks to the cartoons! The global maps and the names in French and Spanish would definitely help any birder traveling. —A 12-year-old birder reading it to his kid brother, Ontario.
At the end of the book there is the 12-page literature cited section followed by an appendix of regularly occurring non-breeding, accidentally occurring, casually occurring and introduced species. In addition, biographies of the author, Robert Alvo, and numerous other book contributors are included. The book concludes with handy subject indexes in English, French and Spanish. —Rob Warnock, co-Editor of Picoides, Canadian Society of Canadian Ornithologists, Saskatchewan.
By leavening the book with humour, [the cartoons] illustrate the importance of not being too earnest in presenting serious material on wildlife conservation to a wide audience. —Peter Taylor, Editor-in-Chief of The Birds of Manitoba (2003), Manitoba Avian Research Committee, Manitoba.
By providing fascinating anecdotes, tidbits of biological information and little known facts the author does a great job of giving birders memorable information or events to associate with each species. —Dr. Rodger Titman, avid birder, retired professor, and world expert on the breeding ecology of Red-breasted Mergansers, Quebec.
Links to Interviews
CBC online news article with a 1-min clip from a TV interview that I did with Adrian Harewood, which aired Saturday Dec. 5, 2015: http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/ottawa/our-ottawa-bird-north-america-book-1.3351296
10-minute interview on CBC radio, Saturday Dec. 5, 2015, with Giacomo Panico: http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/ottawa/programs/intownandout/what-s-it-like-being-a-bird-1.3352392
The entire CBC TV interview (10 minutes) with Adrien Harewood that aired Saturday Dec. 5, 2015. Sorry about the 3 commercials. The interview starts at 22:40 min into the show: http://www.cbc.ca/player/play/2679994786
Interview on radio “The Region’s” The Feed, York Region, Ontario.
Links to Full (and other) Book Reviews
Steven Price, Bird Studies Canada President: http://www.birdscanada.org/news/book-reviews-two-unique-offerings
Rob Warnock, co-Editor for Picoides newsletter of the Society of Canadian Ornithologists: http://www.sco-soc.ca/picoides/archive/Picoides28_2_2015.pdf
Peter Taylor, Nature Manitoba Newsletter: http://www.naturemanitoba.ca/sites/default/files/NatureManitobaNews-08-01-Winter-2015-16.pdf
Dr. Rodger Titman, Bird Protection Québec’s Song Sparrow: http://www.pqspb.org/newsletters/58-3.pdf