Book Talk and Walk 18

Sunday, November 12, 2017 from 1:30-3:30 pm

What a Fish KnowsJoin us for a discussion of the book “What a Fish Knows: The Inner Lives of Our Underwater Cousins”, by Jonathan Balcombe at Caleb Smith State Park Preserve in Smithtown.  The book discussion will be followed by a nature walk.  You can read all, some or none of the book’s chapters to join in the informal discussion and walk.  Light refreshments will be served. Meet inside the museum building. $4.00 activity fee. Call (631) 786-4640 for more details and to sign up!

 

 

Book Description                                                                            

Do fishes think? Do they really have three-second memories? And can they recognize the humans who peer back at them from above the surface of the water? In What a Fish Knows, the myth-busting ethologist Jonathan Balcombe addresses these questions and more, taking us under the sea, through streams and estuaries, and to the other side of the aquarium glass to reveal the surprising capabilities of fishes. Although there are more than thirty thousand species of fish—more than all mammals, birds, reptiles, and amphibians combined—we rarely consider how individual fishes think, feel, and behave. Balcombe upends our assumptions about fishes, portraying them not as unfeeling, dead-eyed feeding machines but as sentient, aware, social, and even Machiavellian—in other words, much like us.

What a Fish Knows draws on the latest science to present a fresh look at these remarkable creatures in all their breathtaking diversity and beauty. Fishes conduct elaborate courtship rituals and develop lifelong bonds with shoalmates. They also plan, hunt cooperatively, use tools, curry favor, deceive one another, and punish wrongdoers. We may imagine that fishes lead simple, fleeting lives—a mode of existence that boils down to a place on the food chain, rote spawning, and lots of aimless swimming. But, as Balcombe demonstrates, the truth is far richer and more complex, worthy of the grandest social novel.

Advertisements

Book Talk and Walk 17

Sunday, March 26, 2017 from 1:30-3:30 pm

the-genius-of-birdsJoin us for a discussion of the book “The Genius of Birds”, by Jennifer Ackerman at Caleb Smith State Park Preserve in Smithtown.  The book discussion will be followed by a nature walk.  You can read all, some or none of the book’s chapters to join in the informal discussion and walk.  Light refreshments will be served. Meet inside the museum building. $4.00 activity fee and $8.00 parking fee. Call (631) 786-4640 for more details and to sign up!

 

 

Book Description                                                                            

Birds are astonishingly intelligent creatures. According to revolutionary new research, some birds rival primates and even humans in their remarkable forms of intelligence.

In The Genius of Birds, acclaimed author Jennifer Ackerman explores the newly discovered brilliance of birds. As she travels around the world to the most cutting-edge frontiers of research—the distant laboratories of Barbados and New Caledonia, the great tit communities of the United Kingdom and the bowerbird habitats of Australia, the ravaged mid-Atlantic coast after Hurricane Sandy and the warming mountains of central Virginia and the western states—Ackerman not only tells the story of the recently uncovered genius of birds but also delves deeply into the latest findings about the bird brain itself that are shifting our view of what it means to be intelligent.

Book Talk and Walk 16

Sunday, November 6, 2016 from 1:30-3:30 pm

half-earth-coverJoin us for a discussion of the book “Half-Earth: Our Planet’s Fight for Life”, by Edward O. Wilson at Caleb Smith State Park Preserve in Smithtown.  The book discussion will be followed by a nature walk.  You can read all, some or none of the book’s chapters to join in the informal discussion and walk.  Light refreshments will be served. Meet inside the museum building. $4.00 activity fee. Call (631) 786-4640 for more details and to sign up!

Book Description                          

Half-Earth proposes an achievable plan to save our imperiled biosphere: devote half the surface of the Earth to nature.

In order to stave off the mass extinction of species, including our own, we must move swiftly to preserve the biodiversity of our planet, says Edward O. Wilson in his most impassioned book to date. Half-Earth argues that the situation facing us is too large to be solved piecemeal and proposes a solution commensurate with the magnitude of the problem: dedicate fully half the surface of the Earth to nature.

http://eowilsonfoundation.org/

Book Talk and Walk 15

Sunday, March 20, 2016 from 1:30-3:30pm

owl

Join us for a discussion of the book “The House of Owls”, by Tony Angell at Caleb Smith State Park Preserve in Smithtown.  The book discussion will be followed by a nature stroll.  You can read all, some or none of the book’s chapters to join in the informal discussion and walk.  Light refreshments will be served. Meet inside the museum building. $4.00 activity fee. No parking fee.

Call (631) 786-4640 for more details and to sign up!

Book Description                                                                                                            

For a quarter century, Tony Angell and his family shared the remarkable experience of closely observing pairs of western screech owls that occupied a nesting box outside their forest home. The journals the author recorded his observations in, and the captivating drawings he created, form the heart of this compelling book—a personal account of an artist-naturalist’s life with owls. Angell’s extensive illustrations show owls engaged in what owls do—hunting, courting, raising families, and exercising their inquisitive natures—and reveal his immeasurable respect for their secret lives and daunting challenges. –Amazon.com

Visit the Owl Pages

Book Talk and Walk 14

Sunday, October 25, 2015 from 1:30-3:30pm

seedscover

Join us for a discussion of the book “The Triumph of Seeds: How Grains, Nuts, Kernels, Pulses, and Pips Conquered the Plant Kingdom and Shaped Human History”, by Thor Hanson at Caleb Smith State Park Preserve in Smithtown.  The book discussion will be followed by a nature walk.  You can read all, some or none of the book’s chapters to join in the informal discussion and walk.  Light refreshments will be served. Meet inside the museum building. $4.00 activity.

Call (631) 786-4640 for more details and to sign up!

Book Description                                                                      

We live in a world of seeds. From our morning toast to the cotton in our clothes, they are quite literally the stuff and staff of life, supporting diets, economies, and civilizations around the globe. Just as the search for nutmeg and the humble peppercorn drove the Age of Discovery, so did coffee beans help fuel the Enlightenment, and cottonseed help spark the Industrial Revolution. And from the Fall of Rome to the Arab Spring, the fate of nations continues to hinge on the seeds of a Middle Eastern grass known as wheat.

Seeing Seeds Up Close

Book Talk and Walk 13

Sunday, July 12, 2015 from 1:30-3:30pm

Hope Is the Thing With FeathersJoin us for a discussion of the book “Hope Is the Thing With Feathers: A Personal Chronicle of Vanished Birds”, by Christopher Cokinos at Caleb Smith State Park Preserve in Smithtown.  The book discussion will be followed by a nature walk.  You can read all, some or none of the book’s chapters to join in the informal discussion and walk.  Light refreshments will be served. Meet inside the museum building. $4.00 activity and $8.00 parking fee. Call (631) 786-4640 for more details and to sign up!

Call (631) 786-4640 for more details and to sign up!

Book Description                                                                                                            

Here is a poignant, beautifully written account of the context and circumstances of the extinctions of six North American birds: the passenger pigeon, Carolina parakeet, ivory-billed woodpecker, heath hen, Labrador duck, and great auk. Cokinos, a poet and English professor at Kansas State University, traveled to where these birds lived, sifted through archives and libraries, and interviewed authorities and witnesses. Far from being a sentimental sojourn, his well-researched book takes an engaging, lively look at American history and science as well as the possibility of re-creating vanished creatures through DNA cloning. With increased extinctions looming worldwide, it provides a well-advised cautionary tale–and much more as well. Highly recommended. -Henry T. Armistead, Free Lib. of Philadelphia
Copyright 2000 Reed Business Information, Inc.

Book Talk and Walk 12

Sunday, March 29, 2015 from 1:30-3:30pm

book cover

Join us for a discussion of the book “The Bluebird Effect: Uncommon Bonds with Common Birds”, by Julie Zickefoose at Caleb Smith State Park Preserve in Smithtown.  The book discussion will be followed by a nature stroll.  You can read all, some or none of the book’s chapters to join in the informal discussion and walk.  Light refreshments will be served. Meet inside the museum building. $4.00 activity fee. No parking fee.

Call (631) 786-4640 for more details and to sign up!

Book Description                                                                                                            

The Bluebird Effect is about the change that’s set in motion by one single act, such as saving an injured bluebird—or a hummingbird, swift, or phoebe. Each of the twenty five chapters covers a different species, and many depict an individual bird, each with its own personality, habits, and quirks. And each chapter is illustrated with Zickefoose’s stunning watercolor paintings and drawings. Not just individual tales about the trials and triumphs of raising birds, The Bluebird Effect mixes humor, natural history, and memoir to give readers an intimate story of a life lived among wild birds. –Amazon.com