Winged Migration

Jacques Perrin, Author, Jean Dorst, Preface by, Jean-Francois Mongibeaux, Text by (Art/Photo Books) Seuil $60 (270p) ISBN 978-2-02-061292-0

From the makers of the Oscar-nominated documentary film Winged Migration comes this companion volume of photographs and essays on the rituals and travels of birds. Perrin, the documentary's producer, and Mongibeaux, a special correspondent for Figaro magazine, take a broad, poetic approach to their subject, peppering their work with dramatic lines like""as soon as spring comes, the birds obey, each in their own way, the same law that their ancestors have obeyed since the dawn of time."" Though the book overflows with""Feathered Facts"" and substantial essays by practicing ornithologists, its tone leans more toward celebration than scientific detachment. The result is an unusually passionate survey of entire class of animals, illustrated with stunning film stills and photographs. There are two-page spreads showing Canada geese flying over the deserts of Arizona and close-ups of pink flamingos in Kenya. Fans of the film will appreciate the book's last section, which explains how the filmmakers used ultra-light miniature aircraft and""bird actors"" to document the migration routes of several species. A beautiful tribute to the animal kingdom's diversity and adaptability, this volume should appeal to both birders and armchair travelers.