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Sierra Club Books

Bird BrainsBird Brains
The Intelligence of Crows, Ravens, Magpies, and Jays
By Candace Savage
Paperback, 144 pages
ISBN: 978-0-87156-956-1
61 color photographs

Birds have long been considered the archetypal featherbrains - beautiful but dumb. Members of the crow family (corvids), however, appear to have powers of abstraction, memory, and creativity that put them on a par with many mammals, even higher primates. Bird Brains presents these bright, brassy, and surprisingly colorful birds in a remarkable collection of full-color, close-up photographs by more than two dozen of the world's best wildlife photographers.

The lively, meticulously researched text by naturalist Candace Savage describes the life and behavior of sixteen representative species of corvids that inhabit North America and Europe. Drawing on the most recent research, Savage describes birds that recognize each other as individuals, call one another by "name," remember and relocate thousands of hidden food caches, engage in true teamwork, and generally exhibit an extraordinary degree of sophistication.

This handsomely produced book is sure to delight not only bird lovers but also outdoor enthusiasts captivated by the fascinating behaviors of nature's wild creatures.

Candace Savage is a naturalist and writer who has published numerous internationally acclaimed books of natural history and science, including Wolves, Grizzly Bears, and Wild Cats. She has also written several children's books as part of a series on environmental issues. She lives in Saskatchewan, Canada.

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