7:00 PM – 8:00 PM
Talk Title: Looking for Johnny Rook: Adventures in the World of the Caracaras
Description: Author, musician, and former Austin resident Jonathan Meiburg will take us through the landscapes, animals, and people of his book A Most Remarkable Creature: The Hidden Life and Epic Journey of the World’s Smartest Birds of Prey. We’ll visit penguin colonies in the Falklands, gaze in nervous wonder at the world’s largest spiders in the forests of Guyana, and explore the ornithological mystery of the unique raptors that puzzled Darwin and fascinated the writer and naturalist William Henry Hudson.
About the Speaker: In 1997, Jonathan Meiburg received a Thomas J. Watson Fellowship to travel to remote communities around the world, a year-long journey that sparked an enduring fascination with islands, birds, and the deep history of the living world. His first book, A Most Remarkable Creature: The Hidden Life and Epic Journey of the World’s Smartest Birds of Prey (Knopf/Vintage) combines natural history, travel writing, and literary biography to tell the story of the unusual falcons called caracaras and the people who live with them, and was one of the most acclaimed nonfiction books of 2021. (“Calling this a bird book,” wrote The Dallas Morning News, “is like calling Moby-Dick a whaling manual.”) Along with scientific publications, Meiburg has also has written on subjects from a hidden exhibit hall at the American Museum of Natural History to the last long-form interview with author Peter Matthiessen—but he’s best known for his work with his bands Shearwater and Loma, whose albums and performances have been praised by NPR, The New York Times, The Guardian, and Pitchfork. His unique career between the sciences and the arts makes him an ideal guide on a journey through wild landscapes and deep time, in the company of weird and wonderful creatures and people.
THIS MEETING WILL TAKE PLACE USING ZOOM WEB CONFERENCING. TRAVIS AUDUBON E-NEWSLETTER RECIPIENTS WILL RECEIVE THE MEETING CREDENTIALS VIA EMAIL IN MAY. IF YOU WOULD LIKE TO ATTEND THE MEETING BUT DO NOT RECEIVE OUR E-NEWSLETTER, PLEASE CONTACT CALEY@TRAVISAUDUBON.ORG.
Featured image above: Jonathan Meiburg with group of Striated Caracaras on New Island, taken by Katie Harrington.