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Book Recommendation Needed - Animal collecting history

Discussion in 'TV, Movies, Books about Zoos & Wildlife' started by FunkyGibbon, 5 Dec 2015.

  1. FunkyGibbon

    FunkyGibbon Moderator Staff Member

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    All of the historical photos that gentle lemur has been uploading into the gallery, and the comments sparked by them, has sparked an interest in the old animal collecting expeditions. I've read most of Gerald Durrell, and at least one of Attenbourough's Zoo Quest books, but now I'm looking for a more general history, an overview if you will. I know it's quite a specific area but there must be something out there.
    Any reccomendations gratefully received.
     
  2. Ohiozoos

    Ohiozoos Member

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    Apologize to comment on an older thread but thought it was better than starting a whole new one. I have recently become interested in this topic and thought I would bump this topic to see if anyone had any new suggestions?

    I picked up a Gerald Durrell book (A Zoo in My Luggage) and thoroughly enjoyed it and was wondering if anybody could offer specific titles that centered around this topic?

    Thanks for any suggestions you might be able to recommend.
     
  3. Hix

    Hix Wildlife Enthusiast and Lover of Islands Premium Member

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    If by "this topic" you mean the original query about an overview of the history of animal collecting, then I don't think anything has been written (but I'm happy to be corrected on that).

    But if you mean other animal collecting books like A Zoo in My Luggage, then Durrell's The Bafut Beagles, Three Singles to Adventure, The Drunken Forest, The Whispering Land, The Overloaded Ark and Catch Me a Colobus are all classics. Attenborough's Zoo Quest series is in the same genre, although with a different writing style. Jeremy Mallinson wrote Okavango Adventure, and I remember in the 70's reading an old book about wildlife collecting in Ceylon, but I can't remember it's name.

    :p

    Hix
     
  4. Tim May

    Tim May Well-Known Member Premium Member

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    In addition to the books by Gerald Durrel and David Attenborough, another title on the same topic is;-

    A Wanderer in the Wind: The Odyssey of an Animal Collector (Cecil S. Webb).
     
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  5. Chlidonias

    Chlidonias Moderator Staff Member

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    Frank Buck's animal-collecting books are, um, interesting. So long as you appreciate that he was a showman and that his stories may not necessarily reflect the actual events in a precisely accurate fashion.

    The 1966 book on the Bronx Zoo, Gathering of Animals, includes some stuff about collecting expeditions, although obviously it is specific to that zoo.
     
  6. sooty mangabey

    sooty mangabey Well-Known Member

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    This might be very close to what you're after: The Animal Game — Daniel E. Bender | Harvard University Press.

    As the recent review in Zoo Grapevine magazine said, the book's problem is that it doesn't quite know what it wants to do, and thus becomes somewhat scattergun in its approach (although it is never boring); however, one area it explores in some detail (and might have focussed on to an even greater extent) is the way in which American zoos acquired their animals in the past.

    Elsewhere, many of the Durrell books are, of course, indispensable in this area - although I am sure their veracity is sometimes dubious.

    Of course, the greatest - and most true-to-reality - accounts of animal collecting are those that follow the intrepid Hal and Roger Hunt: Willard Price's Adventure series - Wikipedia.
     
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  7. FBBird

    FBBird Well-Known Member

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    Try also 'The Wildest Game' by Peter Ryhiner. He caught and imported the original pair of Indian Rhinos for Basle Zoo.
     
  8. Giant Panda

    Giant Panda Well-Known Member

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    It's been many years since I read it (and doubtless you have too), but Douglas Botting's biography gives some fascinating insights into the truth behind Durrell's sugar-coated narratives.

    Seconded! The moose with a mouse is a classic technique.
     
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  9. Chlidonias

    Chlidonias Moderator Staff Member

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  10. vogelcommando

    vogelcommando Well-Known Member

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  11. Ohiozoos

    Ohiozoos Member

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    Thank you everyone for getting back to me and so quickly I might add! Looks like I have quite a few books I can add to my summer reading list.