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David Sibley, “Birds Being Birds”

September 9, 2019

7:15 pm - 9:15 pm

Immanuel Lutheran Church

We watch birds because of their intrinsic appeal, but the hobby of birding tends to be superficial. We identify birds and admire their appearance and sounds. In this talk, author and artist David Sibley goes beyond identification to focus on the incredible adaptations that help birds survive each day. Their abilities border on magical. Birds can balance on an unsteady twig even while they sleep. They can fly over the Himalayas. They “see” the earth’s magnetic field. In some ways their experiences are beyond our comprehension, but there is also a lot that we share. Even a small glimpse of the world from the birds’ perspective can help us go beyond appreciation and towards an understanding of their lives.


Among birders, David Sibley needs little introduction. The son of an academic ornithologist, he has been studying, drawing, and painting birds since a his age was in single digits. He wrote and illustrated the Sibley Guide to Birds, considered by many the premier field guide to the birds of the US and Canada. He has authored or contributed to many other books including Sibley’s Birding Basics and The Sibley Guide to Bird Life and Behavior. He delivered the talk “Birds Being Birds” this past May at The Biggest Week in American Birding to a sold-out crowd.

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