Natural history museums contain many thousands of zoological specimens and each has a tale to tell - often involving extraordinary people, daring explorations, unquenchable scientific curiosity, and strange coincidences. This perfectly presented book, with its engaging pictures, is rich in stories and unveils many secrets. Read about: the fate of a tortoise given as a gift by Captain Cook; the epic international voyage of the biggest known moa egg; the admiration induced by an ape from the jungles of Borneo; the barn owl of mysterious origins; the unfortunate fate of an angry young elephant; the quest to discover how a New Zealand heron turned up in a Florence museum; the strange arrival of an Australian banjo frog and many other mind-boggling mysteries. The author is a fabulous storyteller, and this book will be loved by museum-goers, animal-lovers, and anyone with a curiosity about the natural world.
Brian Gill is curator of birds and other land vertebrates at Auckland Museum, author and co-author of many books, including New Zealand's Unique Birds, The Kiwi and Other Flightless Birds and New Zealand Frogs and Reptiles, and a contributor to New Zealand Geographic and Forest and Bird.