Books by Ralph L. Ramstad

Released: July 12, 1996

An entry in the Creative Minds series. Born near the turn of the century, Nice developed a deep and early love of nature and its creatures, especially birds. Her attempts to learn more were frustrated, however, by two factors. First, bird books were written by ornithologists, whose dry, scientific descriptions were of little use to birdwatchers in the field. Second, and by far worse, they were all based on dead birds. Only when her parents gave her a copy of a new book on birding by a writer who detested the practice of killing for study did Nice see an alternative and set out on a lifelong mission ``. . . to help Nature [and] make people love Nature more.'' After college and marriage, Nice found that her past research was ignored by her peers (no one paid attention to the work of a housewife with no doctorate and not even a university job). She refused to give in, and the detailed notes of the birds in her own backyard resulted in a book, The Birds of Oklahoma, the first of many serious research studies she wrote. At the same time her environmental concerns grew stronger and she became an outspoken advocate for the preservation of the wild. Nice was eventually honored by birders and scientists everywhere; Dunlap's inspiring and touching account means that Nice's life will come to the attention of a new generation. (b&w illustrations, bibliography, index) (Biography. 10-14) Read full book review >