The long line at the Kapalama post office on a Saturday morning was absolutely worth it; today I received my copies of Hume and Walters’ Extinct Birds. I’ve been reading it all day and it’s wonderful! It is a great primer on just about every bird species and subspecies that went extinct in *historical times.
*historical in the broad post glacial sense. Some species are only known from subfossils.
The text is thoroughly researched and to top it off, Dr. Hume’s line drawings add so much to the book. I’ve read many technical descriptions of extinct birds but there are some species in the book that I’ve never seen illustrated before. The stout-legged wren (Pachyplichas yaldwyni) was particularly endearing.
While it’s a shame that Hawai’i is so well represented in this book, I hope it helps us treasure the few remaining avian endemics we have left.
On a personal note, I’d like to thank Dr. Hume for the awesome line drawings he added in each copy. The O’ahu Stilt Owl (Grallistrix orion) never looked so regal!