244 pp., hardback, d.w., Johannesburg, 2014
In 1990 a group of University of Cambridge scientists found the wing of an unidentified bird in Ethiopia, and a new species of bird was named: Nechisar Nightjar. Twenty-two years later South African ornithologist and birder Ian Sinclair led an expedition to try and find this elusive bird. This is Vernon Head's account of the adventure.
"It's Ridder Haggard with birds! Hidden secrets in remote exotic lands, hearsay and scraps of treasure but no map! And four privateers in search of the ornithological grail. It's boys-own stuff for girls too - fabulous!" Chris Packham, British naturalist and author
"A magical and lyrical quest to find the world's rarest bird. But this is so much more than an ornithological treasure hunt - it is an impassioned hymn to the wonderment of nature and its balm for the human spirit." Harriet Nimmo, former CEO Wildscreen and founder of ARKive.org
Architect Vernon Head was born in 1967 in Cape Town. He is presently chairman of BirdLife South Africa.