Iona Hiser has written a competent introduction to ornithology which is filled with information for the avid and the initiated bird enthusiast. From the vantage point of her own patio in Arizona, she has observed the habits of a wide variety of feathered creatures and she uses much of this first hand experience to the fullest. The prehistoric origin of birds, how they fly, select mates and nesting places, build nests and raise their young introduces the reader to general instinctual patterns. Then the many ways in which birds are to man emotionally prepares him for the individual introductions that follow. The habits of such familiar species as the humming bird, thrasher, mocking bird, dove, robin, woodpecker, shrike, land into the more interesting descriptions of rare birds and strange habits. The western tanager, the gray jay, surprisingly the cowbird, and the bird enter this category. Conversational writing and succinct explanations insure a wider audience than usual.