Haupt, Lyanda Lynn

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Haupt, Lyanda Lynn

PERSONAL:

Married; children: one daughter.

ADDRESSES:

Home—West Seattle, WA. E-mail—[email protected]

CAREER:

Writer, ornithologist, educator, researcher, environmentalist, and naturalist. Audubon Society, Seattle, WA, director of educational programs. U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, seabird researcher. Worked in raptor and bird-of-prey rehabilitation in New England.

AWARDS, HONORS:

Washington State Book Award, 2002, for Rare Encounters with Ordinary Birds: Notes from a Northwest Year.

WRITINGS:

Rare Encounters with Ordinary Birds: Notes from a Northwest Year, Sasquatch Books (Seattle, WA), 2001.

Pilgrim on the Great Bird Continent: The Importance of Everything and Other Lessons from Darwin's Lost Notebooks, Little, Brown (New York, NY), 2006.

Contributor to periodicals, including Image, Wild Earth, Open Spaces, Conservation Biology Journal, Birdwatcher's Digest, and Prairie Naturalist.

SIDELIGHTS:

Lyanda Lynn Haupt is a writer, naturalist, environmentalist, and ornithologist in West Seattle, Washington. She has been closely involved in environmental education as director of educational programs at the Seattle branch of the National Audubon Society. Closely involved in the lives and welfare of wild birds, Haupt has worked as a seabird researcher for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and as a specialist in raptor rehabilitation in New England. She is a frequent contributor to periodicals and journals on conservation, nature, and environmental issues. Her first book, Rare Encounters with Ordinary Birds: Notes from a Northwest Year, reflects this hands-on approach to avian science. Within the book, she "explores the relationship between humans, birds, and ecological understanding," commented a biographer on her home page. She offers ruminations on bird species ranging from the common starling to the snowy owl, describing the world in which these creatures live and the insights they can offer to human observers who take the time to appreciate them. A Publishers Weekly critic concluded that "casual and more experienced birders, as well as nature lovers in general, will find this work both a resource and a pleasure."

In Pilgrim on the Great Bird Continent: The Importance of Everything and Other Lessons from Darwin's Lost Notebooks, Haupt "treats the reader to a vastly informative and entertaining look at the mind of an earnest young scientist at work," noted Robert Finn on Bookreporter.com. "In this slim and gracefully written volume, devoted birdwatcher Lyanda Lynn Haupt combs through Darwin's voluminous writings and tries to tease out exactly what he was trying to accomplish, how he reasoned it out, and what lessons Darwin can teach us today," Finn remarked. She traces Darwin's personal evolution from a seasick beetle collector who was twenty-two years old when he boarded the fabled HMS Beagle for his voyage of discovery, to a serious, seasoned, and thoroughly professional scientist and naturalist who stepped off that vessel some five years later. "In fluid, lovely prose, Haupt documents this dramatic transformation," observed a Publishers Weekly reviewer.

Haupt spends much of her narrative examining Darwin's writings in minute detail, including his diaries and seemingly minor works such as Ornithological Notes, a collection of observations and writings from his voyage on the Beagle. This work illuminates Darwin's "sensitivity to the minute details of the observable world" as well as his "modesty and zeal for learning," commented a Science News contributor. By "brilliantly mining his lesser-known writings, Haupt pens a startlingly fresh exploration of the man's genius that invites readers to look at the world with new eyes," commented reviewer Sandy Amazeen on the Monsters and Critics Web site. She devotes more attention to Darwin's early observations in South America than his better-known touchstone work in the Galapagos Islands. Throughout, Haupt seeks to reimagine Darwin's thought processes as he was assembling his great discoveries and formulating the theories that would fundamentally alter the world's conception of human and animal life. Darwin emerges finally as a pioneering naturalist who "trusted his observations more than the political influences of his times," or the scientific work of those who preceded him, noted a California Bookwatch reviewer.

Among her explorations of Darwin's thoughts and accomplishments, Haupt also interweaves a number of her own scientific observations and related musings, "producing the strong writer-reader bond that typifies good nature writing," commented Gilbert Taylor, writing in Booklist. "Like a good teacher, she imbues scholarly material with personal investment," observed BioScience reviewer John Bois. In assessing her work, Bois called Haupt "an excellent writer" and "a woman of ideas, scholarly and acute." Bois concluded, "One hopes that her brilliant prose and scholarship will inspire current and future generations to share her passion."

BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:

PERIODICALS

BioScience, November, 2006, John Bois, "The Presence of Wild Things," review of Pilgrim on the Great Bird Continent: The Importance of Everything and Other Lessons from Darwin's Lost Notebooks, p. 939.

Booklist, March 1, 2006, Gilbert Taylor, review of Pilgrim on the Great Bird Continent, p. 52.

California Bookwatch, June, 2006, review of Pilgrim on the Great Bird Continent.

New York Times Book Review, June 11, 2006, Peter Dizikes, "Science Chronicle," review of Pilgrim on the Great Bird Continent.

Publishers Weekly, September 24, 2001, review of Rare Encounters with Ordinary Birds: Notes from a Northwest Year, p. 81; January 30, 2006, review of Pilgrim on the Great Bird Continent, p. 53.

Science News, April 8, 2006, review of Pilgrim on the Great Bird Continent, p. 223.

SciTech Book News, September, 2002, review of Rare Encounters with Ordinary Birds, p. 63; June, 2006, review of Pilgrim on the Great Bird Continent.

ONLINE

Bookreporter.com,http://www.bookreporter.com/ (May 7, 2008), Robert Finn, review of Pilgrim on the Great Bird Continent.

Lyanda Lynn Haupt Home Page,http://www.lyandalynnhaupt.com (May 7, 2008).

Monsters and Critics,http://www.monstersandcritics.com/ (March 6, 2006), Sandy Amazeen, review of Pilgrim on the Great Bird Continent.