Sentinel chickens: what birds tell us about our health and the world.
Carlton South: Melbourne University Press, 2012.
Octavo, paperback, 231 pp.
In this book, Nobel prize winner Peter Doherty explores how birds of all kinds are recruited by humans to help us interpret our ever changing and unpredictable world. These intriguing sentinels continually alert us to toxic and environmental dangers that threaten all vertebrates. Illustrated by fascinating examples, Doherty shows how birds have contributed to cutting-edge medical research and helped us to understand the nature of human cancer, malaria and influenza, even contributing to the development of new vaccines and cures. In his trademark style, Peter argues that since birds pollinate, spread plant seeds and control insects, endangering their habitats through human activities is a threat to our own well-being.