Birds of Lake Merritt

Birds of Lake Merritt
Hardcover, 5.5 x 8.5, 80 pages.
ISBN: 9781597145480.

By Alex Harris

This charming full-color field guide introduces us to fifteen waterbirds easily found in the urban wildlife refuge of Lake Merritt in Oakland. In his introduction, author-illustrator Alex Harris includes a history of the lake, providing context for a place that is alluring to humans and shorebirds alike. Each species profile of the lake’s feathered residents is accompanied by a beautiful, detailed watercolor that captures the bird’s distinctive coloring and sinuous physicality. The black-crowned night heron, Oakland’s official city bird, stares with its startling orange eyes, while the American coot flexes its fancy flared feet. Along with straightforward notes on the identification of each bird, Harris features the voices of Oakland community members, sharing moments of delight from the birds’ most dedicated observers. A celebration of avian life and the human pleasure of witnessing it, Birds of Lake Merritt is an essential guide to the natural world in the heart of the city.

Reviews

“I’ve always known Lake Merritt as a great place to look for birds, not knowing that it was originally designated as a bird sanctuary over 150 years ago—the first wildlife refuge in the country! This charming book is the perfect introduction to the lake and its birds, and it’s sure to give you a new appreciation of both.” DAVID ALLEN SIBLEY, author of What It’s Like to Be a Bird
“Beautifully illustrated and written, this is a must-have for anyone who wants to better understand and appreciate our neighbors.” JENNY ODELL, author of How to Do Nothing
“With brush and words, Alex Harris brings out the local color of beloved birds in the heart of Oakland. Through each bird’s backstory, we see that Lake Merritt is a meeting spot for local avian residents and international travelers alike. Alex’s bird portraits capture the life, whimsy, and identification details of fifteen common species, making this a great introduction to birds for adults and youth.” JOHN MUIR LAWS, author of The Laws Guide to Drawing Birds
"Just like the birds that flock to Lake Merritt every winter, I find myself returning to this book again and again. Every time I absorb these pages, I’m instantly transported to my favorite place in Oakland." LIAM O'DONOGHUE, host of East Bay Yesterday
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Categories New Releases | Nature

About the Author

Alex Harris

Alex Harris

Alex Harris, born and raised in Berkeley, California, is an artist interested in using art and technology to look at how humans interface with the natural world. He has a BA in environmental studies from the University of California, Santa Cruz, and previously worked as the web editor and electronic communications manager at the Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive. He lives and works in Oakland, California.

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