Conserve Wildlife Blog

CWF Book Club: Winter Reading List

January 9th, 2023

Meaghan’s Recommendations

by Meaghan Lyon, Wildlife Biologist

The cold and dreary winter weather makes for the perfect excuse to curl up with a book. Reading a good book can transport you into new worlds, or, in the case of the following books I’m about to recommend, help you get excited about getting outside to explore your own winter wildland.

My first recommendation is a Field Guide, Tracking and the Art of Seeing: How to Read Animal Tracks and Sign written by Paul Rezendes. Although this is a field guide to tracking wildlife, this book includes personal accounts that make it much more readable cover to cover. The author includes several North American species including rodents, hoofed animals, bears, raccoons, opossums, and members of the weasel, rabbit, dog, and cat families. He describes not only the signs these animals leave but also their ways of life throughout the seasons to help the reader get a fuller picture.

My second recommendation is written by a favorite author of mine. Barry Lopez, an award-winning author and environmental justice advocate, has written several books worthy of recommendation (he was also the keynote speaker at my undergraduate commencement ceremony at the College of the Atlantic). Lopez’s Winter Count is a compilation of stories that, as The New York Times put it, “celebrate the web of nature that holds the world together.” I tend to re-read this one each winter.

My final recommendation and the most recent novel I read was Migrations written by Charlotte McConaghy. In a world where species are going extinct every day, the main character follows the last remaining population of Artic terns as they migrate south to Antarctica, possibly for the last time. The journey is epic, intimate, heartbreaking, and filled with hope. McConaghy’s latest novel There Once Were Wolves is another noteworthy story about a biologist reintroducing wolves to the Scottish Highlands.

Happy Reading!

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