'The Thing with Feathers' Reviewed; A Rising Star in Ornithology Sheds Some Light, but Not Feathers, on His Fascination with Our Feathered Friends

By Osterhout, Jacob E. | Newsweek, May 23, 2014 | Go to article overview

'The Thing with Feathers' Reviewed; A Rising Star in Ornithology Sheds Some Light, but Not Feathers, on His Fascination with Our Feathered Friends


Osterhout, Jacob E., Newsweek


Byline: Jacob E. Osterhout

Bird's the word for Noah Strycker. Once named the American Birding Association's Young Birder of the Year, the 28-year-old ornithologist is a rising superstar in the birding community. He has traveled all over the world--from the Amazon jungle to Antarctica--in his avian odyssey. What's the fascination?

In his latest book, The Thing With Feathers: The Surprising Lives of Birds and What They Reveal About Being Human, Strycker presents essays on 13 birds that reveal a gaggle of intriguing behavioral insights. Ponder the fact that parrots are the only animal besides humans that dance to a beat, or think about how nutcrackers remember the thousands of locations where they've buried seeds.

According to Strycker, "If you look closely enough, many seemingly incredible bird feats have human counterparts, with interesting lessons." Snowy owls fly thousands of miles just for the heck of it. In humans, that translates to wanderlust. Albatrosses mate for life, maintaining a lower divorce rate than humans. And if that's not love, it's certainly an astounding commitment.

At times the connection between bird and human behavior feels tenuous. Strycker spends a chapter discussing how hummingbirds spend all their time flying around so quickly that they become "slaves to speed, desperately fighting for control of calories, so single-minded that they don't even partner up to raise a family." He then references studies that display an increase in humans' walking pace over the past decade in the world's largest cities and asks, "Do we really want to become hummingbirds? …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Note: primary sources have slightly different requirements for citation. Please see these guidelines for more information.

Cited article

'The Thing with Feathers' Reviewed; A Rising Star in Ornithology Sheds Some Light, but Not Feathers, on His Fascination with Our Feathered Friends
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
Items saved from this article
  • Highlights & Notes
  • Citations
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Search by... Author
    Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.