Date of this Version
The Prairie Naturalist 49:85-86; 2017
Imagine going on a Victor Emanuel Nature Tour, seated in the van next to Victor Emanuel himself. Between birding stops, this man who has seen over 6,000 species as a world-renowned conservationist and innovator in ecotourism regales you with stories. He starts with his “spark bird”: when he was eight years old, he was taken with the beauty of a pair of Northern Cardinals (Cardinalis cardinalis), and was hooked. Whenever people pile back into the van after a birding stop, he starts another story.
That’s how One More Warbler: A Life with Birds reads, as if Emanuel sat down with S. Kirk Walsh a few times, and she transcribed his stories and put them into rough chronological order. His stories are about birds and other people, so you won’t get a lot of insight about him from the book. If you want to learn about Victor Emanuel the man and why he is so beloved, you’d do better to read Katy Vine’s (2011) profile, “The Birdman of Texas,” in Texas Monthly magazine.