Tony Angell & John Marzluff
Start your summer of reading with new books that celebrate the natural wonders of the world with The Nature of Writing Series, co-hosted by Village Books and North Cascades Institute. From smart crows to the distant Arctic, American history to environmental memoir, you'll learn more about our wondrous planet through the voices of some of our country's best nature interpreters. Come listen to John Marzluff and Tony Angell talk about their new book Gifts of the Crow as part of this series. This event is free.
In Gifts of the Crow: How Perception, Emotion, and Thought Allow Smart Birds to Behave Like Humans, John Marzluff, the preeminent researcher on crows, teams up with artist and fellow naturalist Tony Angell to offer an astonishing look at the little-known and largely underappreciated intelligence of the birds of the amazing corvid family, which includes crows, ravens, and jays. Showing that these "bird brains" are actually quite sophisticated, Marzluff and Angell tell fascinating, true stories of surprising crow behavior, such as crows using tree bark to wind surf along ridge tops, jar tops to sled down steep roofs, tools to get food from hard-to-reach places that human babies can’t figure out, and, most surprising of all, giving gifts to people who help or feed them. Along with these and other amazing stories, the authors explain the engrossing, breakthrough science that accounts for this behavior, as well as arresting illustrations of the crow's antics and anatomy. Finally, Gifts of the Crow proves that crows are highly intelligent, undeniably emotional, and much more similar to humans than we ever imagined.
In fact, Marzluff and Angell reveal, crows have taken on seven key human characteristics: language, delinquency, insight, frolic, passion & wrath, risk-taking, and awareness. Their unusually large and complex brains, long lives, social lifestyles, and shared habitat with humans have led to crows evolving these human traits. With surprises on every page, Marzluff and Angell recount mindboggling anecdotes of crows who, like humans, acknowledge their recently deceased, bestow gifts, seek revenge, warn of impending danger, recognize people’s and other's faces, commit murder, dream, play tricks, design and use tools, and work together to accomplish tasks. These riveting stories present a thrilling look at somecof nature’s most wondrous creatures.
ABOUT THE AUTHORS
John Marzluff, Ph.D., is Professor of Wildlife Science at the University of Washington. The author of four books and over one hundred scientific papers on various aspects of bird behavior, his research has been the focus of articles in the New York Times, National Geographic, Audubon, Boys Life, The Seattle Times, and National Wildlife. PBS's NATURE featured his raven research in its 2001 production "Ravens," and featured his crow research in 2010 with the documentary film, "A Murder of Crows." John has been a guest on NPR’s Diane Rehm Show, the Jay Thomas Show, and Morning Edition.
Tony Angell has authored and/or illustrated a dozen award-winning books related to natural history. Most recently, his drawings in the coauthored book, In the Company of Crows and Ravens, received the prestigious Victoria/Albert prize. His works are continuously available at galleries in Seattle and Santa Fe and included in several museums and corporate collections across the country.