» » Feathers: The Evolution of a Natural Miracle
eBook Feathers: The Evolution of a Natural Miracle ePub

eBook Feathers: The Evolution of a Natural Miracle ePub

by Thor Hanson

  • ISBN: 0465020135
  • Category: Biological Sciences
  • Subcategory: Math Science
  • Author: Thor Hanson
  • Language: English
  • Publisher: Basic Books; 1 edition (May 31, 2011)
  • Pages: 352
  • ePub book: 1327 kb
  • Fb2 book: 1218 kb
  • Other: doc mobi docx lit
  • Rating: 4.9
  • Votes: 371


Thor Hanson's Feathers is a sparkling history. popular natural history at its best. An illuminating study of an evolutionary marvel. A winning book about the extraordinary place of feathers in animal and human history. ―Wall Street Journal.

Thor Hanson's Feathers is a sparkling history. Feathers is an impressive blend of beauty, form, and function. Feathers is a compelling introduction to one of nature's wonders.

Feathers: The Evolution of a Natural Miracle is a natural history book by American conservation biologist Thor Hanson. Published by Basic Books in 2011 and written for general audiences, the book discusses the significance of feathers, their evolution, and their history both in nature and in use by humans. Feathers is divided into five parts

But as Thor Hanson's book shows, bird feathers are so intricately constructed that modern technologists are now seriously .

But as Thor Hanson's book shows, bird feathers are so intricately constructed that modern technologists are now seriously trying to emulate their nanostructural perfection. Hanson's study is a stroll through the many ramifications of feathers – their genesis, evolution, use in our duvets, use in mating displays, use as human adornment – but so amiably paced that no topic outstays its welcome. Feathers are at the heart of two of evolution's greatest mysteries: first, how could such an intricate structure have evolved and for what original purpose? And second, how did flight evolve? They are not the same question: bats fly, but they have no feathers.

In Feathers, biologist Thor Hanson details a sweeping natural history, as. .This book was definitely about feathers

In Feathers, biologist Thor Hanson details a sweeping natural history, as feathers have been used to fly, protect, attract, and adorn through time and place. This book was definitely about feathers. Topics such as the feather trade, fashion, quills, down jackets and pillows, fly fishing and more often took up my time.

Thor Hanson’s 2011 Feathers is thus a rather significant book, and very nice it is too. Hanson, a Washington State-based conservation biologist, previously wrote The Impenetrable Forest: My Gorilla Years in Uganda.

Thor Hanson is an American conservation biologist and author. In Feathers, Hanson interviews the owner of a peregrine falcon whose dive was measured at 242 miles per hour (389 km/h), the fastest flying animal on record. Hanson has published four books for general audiences and one children's book, and he has also contributed articles to a range of periodicals. Scientists disagree on how feathered flight originally evolved, and Hanson describes various viewpoints on the subject.

Books Books of The Times. Surveying That Soft Stuff of Wings and of Dreams. This little-known fact is one of dozens related by Thor Hanson in his fine book Feathers: The Evolution of a Natural Miracle. By AMANDA KATZJUNE 22, 2011. Continue reading the main story. Mr. Hanson, a biologist of boundless curiosity, builds a case for feathers as extraordinary evolutionary artifacts, structural marvels and powerfully attractive adornments - and not just for birds.

feathers: the evolution of a natural miracle. Thor Hanson’s new book takes on the intriguing subject of feathers. The Economist: Thor Hanson’s new book takes on the intriguing subject of feathers. With infectious enthusiasm, he describes them, from their earliest known incarnations to their place in the modern worl.Hanson’s unpretentious style makes what is essentially an excellent scientific work into an enjoyable read for the ignorant and uninitiate.

Yet their story has never been fully told.

As seen on PBS's American Spring Live, one of America's great nature-writers explores the magic and science of feathers. Yet their story has never been fully told. In Feathers, biologist Thor Hanson details a sweeping natural history, as feathers have been used to fly, protect, attract, and adorn through time and place.

Feathers are an evolutionary marvel: aerodynamic, insulating, beguiling. They date back more than 100 million years. Yet their story has never been fully told.

In Feathers, biologist Thor Hanson details a sweeping natural history, as feathers have been used to fly, protect, attract, and adorn through time and place. Applying the research of paleontologists, ornithologists, biologists, engineers, and even art historians, Hanson asks: What are feathers? How did they evolve? What do they mean to us?

Engineers call feathers the most efficient insulating material ever discovered, and they are at the root of biology's most enduring debate. They silence the flight of owls and keep penguins dry below the ice. They have decorated queens, jesters, and priests. And they have inked documents from the Constitution to the novels of Jane Austen.

Feathers is a captivating and beautiful exploration of this most enchanting object.


Vudozilkree Vudozilkree
Feathers, feathers, feathers! Who knew you were so interesting! How birds fly in all weathers, how their colors change in spring!

Okay, enough of that. I really enjoyed this book. It's told in an easy-to-read manner yet contains a wealth of scientific information. Like many people, I enjoy bird watching, but I am certainly no "birder," those insane people who travel the world with high powered binoculars searching for that elusive flutter. Even so, now when I look at the birds in my yard, I will contemplate just how amazing it is that they can fly, how feathers keep them warm and dry, how they signal to each other and attract mates.

If you're interested in birds or flight, I strongly recommend this book.
Based on the title I was expecting a book focused on the evolution and biology of feathers. Instead the book is light on those topics while allocating a big percentage of pages to anecdotes, curiosities, and the use of feathers by humans. If this is what you a looking for, read the book. To me, this choice of topic was a bit disappointing.
WtePSeLNaGAyko WtePSeLNaGAyko
I have yet to finish reading this book, but I've dipped into it in enough places to keep an active interest in what it contains. As an observer of parrots from babyhood learning to get their lift and learn to land before they learn to really fly, I can understand the thinking behind 'ground-upper' and "tree-downers," for how the first flying creature developed. And that is not even yet discussing the title of this book, FEATHERS. I am a lover of avian creatures, and welcomed the information about the unique clothing that birds evolved for many purposes....from comfort to safety to propulsion.

This book is not a guide to feather identification. For that, check out S. David Scott and Casey McFarland's A Guide to North American Species: Bird Feathers, which I also purchased from Amazon around the same time I bought FEATHERS. In this book, you get black and white images or drawings, not real photos, no color. But the cover itself is a work of art, with lots of texture, raised letters of FEATHERS going down the spine, and a sort of abused looking black feather as the only cover art on the textured matte white background paper...just almost an art paper.

The author is very much evident in every page, and I would enjoy sitting around his back yard drinking some homemade lemonade watching his chickens patrol the property for invading insects. If it has feathers, I like it, from the chicken to the buzzard or vulture to the parrot or cormorant. There is a feather for every purpose.

When my African grey was a wee chick learning to eat on his own, I placed a pallet on the floor and sat there with him. Full of himself, with flight feathers sprouting but not fully grown in, he'd flap vigorously enough that he got a wee bit of lift off the pallet. The problem as I saw it was he had to learn to LAND, so starting LOW was the best way to let him learn. From the first lift off, he seemed to get the desire to go further, and then to go higher. Pretty soon, he made it to the top of the bed, then the window sill, then the wooden chest, then the top of his tall cage. He could also go back down and he did, sometimes crashing on the bed, but never harming himself. At some point, he learned to back-stroke and take all weight off his feet and legs as he came down to the floor. I was so proud of him for learning to fly AND LAND. From here, he learned to navigate, and extended his range to flying multiple rings around the very large clear space of the living room. Of course, he is a true flying creature, but I can understand how two legged prehistoric creatures with forearms could discover their ability to fly, whether they went from the ground or the trees.

This book is imminently readable for a non-scientist, yet it has a very extensive bibliography included for further exploration of the topic. If you
like birds at all, you will enjoy this book. I won't be giving this one away. On a wall of books, it stands out, cannot be ignored.
ZloyGenii ZloyGenii
Among paleontologist the evolution of the bird has always been a controversial subject and that of the feathers no less so. Thor Hanson has brought it all together in this fine book. He addresses many important questions. Where did birds come from? Was it from the trees down or the ground up? Are feathers for display, insulation or just flight? Written for the non-specialist the book is, at times , kind of technical but not overly so. Hanson's writing is clear, entertaining and, at all times, informative. The book may not be for everyone but if your at all interested in paleontology and evolution than it may be just the ticket. I especially liked the chapter on the Yixan (China) diggs, a treasure trove of highly detailed of fossils on not only birds but early mammals and feathered dinosaurs as well. Of course there's more to the book than fossils and evolution. Hanson also explores the history of ornithology and our changing view of bird evolution. He also gets into our history of exploiting birds and their feathers for commercial profit when the demands of fashion out weighed our common sense, surely not our proudest endeavor. Historically, there have been many people that have influenced our thinking about birds: Charles Darwin, Alfred R Wallace and Audubon are some of the ones touched on in this book. We share our world with a multitude of living things, birds among them. The more we know about our biological neighbors the better we are able to make decisions on their, and our, future. In the end I was very happy with this purchase. I had no technical problems with this Kindle edition.