Monday, December 28, 2009

A Brief Book Review- Kingbird Highway

In the same vein as my previous posts, I am ignoring the long posts that I should be writing in favor of a shorter one. I got Kingbird Highway as a gift for Christmas, and was done by the next day.

The book, written by the expert birder and field guide author Kenn Kaufman, relates his "big year," in which he hitchhiked across the country to try to see as many birds as possible, at hotspots from Dry Tortugas and Key West to Gambell, Alaska and the San Juan Islands in the Puget Sound.

The descriptions of two of the birds seen at the latter two are incredible- Sky Lark and Ivory Gull. (Out of the golden mist behind me came a bird the color of deep snow, the color of distant icebergs..., The bird sang from a stage of immense proportions, sang as the soloist before the orchestral growling of the surf...)

I don't have too much to say about it except that it is really good. If you are reading this blog, you should read this book. If you aren't, you still should read it, but I can't do anything about that.

All weekend birding, I kept hearing Rowlett's Owlets not calling from one tree, but after reading it, I knew that they were actually not calling from a completely different tree. (See, a joke you would understand if you had read the book. Yet another reason to do it.)



  1. I am currently reading this book, LOL!
    I also bought Pete Dunne's "Tales of a Low-rent Birder" to read when I'm done with Kaufman's book.

  2. Hey dude,
    Just finished the part about the Rowlett's Owlets, very funny.
    I actually met Kenn Kaufman at a NJ Urner Club meeting two years ago, he seemed like a really nice guy.
    Anyways, how come you never respond to my comments? :P

  3. Sorry, I didn't see some of the more recent ones until now. Did you get my pm on whatbird though?

    Was the Allen's Hummingbird you saw the one in Leola? If its seen today I might try for it tomorrow.

    Happy New Year.


  4. Hey,
    Nope, never got your private message.
    Yup, the Allen's was the one in Leola but I believe there hasn't been any sightings of it in a few days so it most likely moved on.
    Happy New Year!