Book Review: Being a bird
| December 18th 2012
The launch of this interesting book ‘BEING A BIRD’ was held recently at the National Museum’s Ford Hall. The occasion sponsored by Kenya Tourism Board and Nature Kenya-the East Africa Natural History Society was graced by nature and bird enthusiasts including famous British author,birder, and TV personality DavidLindo who launched the book.The book, which is a first of its kind in the country, seeks to encourage Kenyan children to adopt bird watching also known as birding as a fulfi lling past time.
Birding is the identifi cation and observation of wild birds in their natural habitat as a recreation. A birder hence is a person who identifi es and studies birds in their natural habitats. Some of the avid birders continue the passion into careers such as tour guides or become ornithologists.
Ornithology is the scientific study of birds. Amazingly, Kenya hosts more bird species than most countries. This is because of its location close to the equator that has favourable weather all year round. Different kinds of bird also prefer Kenya as a home because it has different habitats like mountains, forests, grasslands, deserts, lakes, and the Indian Ocean. Whilst most birding books focus on bird identifi cation,
‘BEING A BIRD’ does so much more. It helps the reader appreciate birds by taking a closer look at their lives from the bird’s perspective. This interesting, informative and colourful book is written by Harriet Matsaert, Kevin Gichuki,
Edson Mlamba, Peter Muriithi Fleur Ng’weno and Peter Wairasho. It is published by Nature Kenya, an institution that has been at the fore front of nature and conservation in the country.
Harriet Matsaert speaking to G-Next expressed her wish that the eighty page book that took two years to complete will ignite a fire for love of birds and conservation.
She also explained that plans are underway to make the book now available in bookshops accessible country wide at a fairer rate. The book is currently retailing at Sh500.
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