The cuckoo is Nature's most famous cheat, regularly manipulating and deceiving other species into raising their young. Nick Davies exposes these generally plain-looking birds to be some of the most cunning and inventive creatures in the natural world. Using shrewd detective skills he reveals the astonishing and beautiful adaptations that have taken place in the cuckoos' long battle to keep on outwitting their hosts. While the hosts are developing better defences, the cuckoo is constantly coming up with novel forms of trickery, and Nick Davies, who has studied cuckoos for three decades, is our guide to unravelling how and why these are taking place.
Beloved as the herald of the European spring, heard but rarely seen, known in folklore as a great cheat, the details of the cuckoo's life have until now been shrouded in mystery, and Cuckoo: Cheating by Nature provides a fascinating insight into the inner workings of these superficially unassuming and ordinary birds.
Paperback. 289 pages. 8 plates with colour photos; black & white illustrations