London: Ivy Press, 2011. Octavo, colour illustrations, fine copy in dustwrapper.
This is a life-size guide to six hundred species from around the world. The Little Grebe incubates its clutch aboard an anchored floating platform; the Social Weaver establishes high-rise apartments by filling whole trees with immense structures containing dozens of separate nests and the Village Weaver bind strips of grass into an elaborate hanging nest. Birds nests set the bar for the best nature has to offer in terms of functional design, and show the evolutionary process at its most refined. "Avian Architecture" renders every type of nest in the style of an architectural blueprint, revealing its construction and engineering techniques in detailed annotation. Step-by-step sequences all through the book show the building processes, while case studies profile key species from around the world. Through a combination of cutting-edge text, intricate illustration and beautiful photography, "Avian Architecture" demonstrates the science and significance of nests, creating a reference that will be as fascinating to engineers and architects as it will to students of bird behaviour.
Price: $40.00 AU