Infectious Disease Ecology of Wild Birds

Edited by Jennifer C. Owen, Dana M. Hawley and Kathryn P. Huyaert

OUP, 2021

Pbk, 266 pages; colour photographs and figures

ISBN 978-0-19-874625-6; £37.99

Two words in the title of this book make it of potentially more interest to birders than other similar publications: ‘ecology’ and ‘wild’. Similar offerings have often dealt only with the intercellular mechanisms of diseases, or used data from lab work, both of which make the topic rather abstract for those of us observing living birds in the wild. Here, discussion revolves around the (mostly) visible results of infections. Real-world factors and interactions that play a part in avian diseases are discussed, including transmission, behaviour, parasites, land use and climate change. While it may prove to be quite pricey for a casual read, this book at least offers a relatively easy-going introduction and overview of this fascinating – and often very relevant – subject. 

Stephen Menzie

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