What are the best Books for Learning about Animal Behavior

“Animal Behavior Science Projects” by Nancy Woodard Cain

Something children will love to have is this book of non-invasive experiments about animal behavior. It is the science fair’s alternative to putting animals in cages, wheels, balls and pens. Each subject outlines a complete scientifically observable behavior, described in detail. Here are some examples:

Firefly Blinking Patterns, Eye Contact in Primates, Facial and Tail Expressions of Wolves, Cricket Songs, Mother Horses and Their Young, Smiling in Human Infants, Lambs and Mothers, Songbird Parents: A Case Study with Bluejays, Neon Tetra Schooling Behavior, Pecking Orders in Chickens, Pigeon Courtship, Nonverbal Communication in Human Interactions, Spider Webs at Work, Behavior at the Bird Feeder, Bumblebee Searching Strategies.

“Hope for Animals and Their World” by Jane Goodall

One of the best books out recently, (September 2nd) Goodall’s ability to commune with both sides of the ongoing issues surrounding animal welfare, coupled with her engaging conversational style, make this book an amazing journey from the brink of extinction to a new dawn for many species. Goodall-along with Cincinnati Zoo Director Thane Maynard-shares fascinating stories about the American Crocodile, the California Condor, the Black-Footed Ferret, and more; all formerly endangered species verging on the edge of extinction, their populations are now slowly but surely being regenerated.

Her life and work made her one of the foremost authorities on animal behavior and her intimate understanding leads one to believe she is ghost-writing their story as told to her in remote settings and hides deep in the primeval forest.

“Dictionary of Farm animal Behavior” by J.F. Hurnik

Something completely different and still fascinating is the following book. I knew it was a good one when I saw how many word phrases are specific to just this book. These amazing phrases lead us into the world of animal behavior through the barn door of our vocabulary-listing-brain.

tympanic ossicles, nuisance vice, dressage maneuver, ratio reinforcement schedule, neonatal piglets

You’d be wrong if you thought I was going to define all these terms here, but in the “Dictionary” every one of them is explained at length. In addition to those are my favorites in the following non-alphabetical listing:

greasy pig disease, singing chicken, sickle dance, gasping turkey syndrome, three-gaited

This book is a treasury of important behaviors designed to clue us in to farm animal health and typical traits. It is a fascinating compendium of knowledge, historical references, philosophical analogies, scientific facts and pure vocabulary for the uninitiated.

“Animal Behavior” by Tim Halliday

Another stunning book that should be in every home just for the pure pleasure of its artistry is “Animal Behavior” by Tim Halliday. It is divided into manageable sections of animal life stages and behaviors. It’s 144 pages include many photos of a variety of species engaged in behaviors depicting various stages of life. It is informative and wellworth the price and the trip or search to find it. This is a book adults can enjoy and children will be drawn to as they read and are able to understand more and more about an endless subject, in which we are completely involved.