Author Phillip M. Hoose wrote the award-winning book Moonbird to tell the story of an iconic migratory shorebird – a Red Knot – that has survived for almost 20 years despite the precipitous decline of the species.
Now, Hoose is using Moonbird’s critical and commercial success to help conserve Red Knots and other shorebird species.
This week, the Manomet Center for Conservation Sciences launched a campaign built around Hoose’s book, Moonbird: A Year on the Wind with the Great Survivor B95.
The Fund for the Moonbirds is designed to generate support for international shorebird conservation and is housed at www.moonbirdfund.org.
The campaign will support the Manomet Center’s Shorebird Recovery Project, which has the goal of saving shorebirds and ensuring the integrity of the ecosystems upon which they and human communities depend.
“If you care about shorebirds and the habitats they rely on, you can’t do better than supporting Manomet’s Shorebird Recovery Project,” Hoose said.
To achieve the ambitious goal, the Manomet team builds the science foundation for action by studying shorebirds on their Arctic breeding grounds and along their intercontinental flight paths. They work with crucial stakeholders to ensure conservation and sound management of important habitats across all of the Americas and the team holds itself accountable through explicit success measures.
The work is already paying dividends. In just five field seasons, a coalition led by the Manomet Center has boosted American Oystercatcher populations by an estimated 10 percent. In the decade that the Manomet team has been working with partners in Rio Gallegos, Argentina, that city has transformed into a model for shorebird habitat conservation.
The book, Moonbird, tells the story of B95, an amazing individual Red Knot that has made the hemispheric round trip migration between the Arctic and Tierra del Fuego at least 19 times. Because B95 has flown more than the distance from the Earth to the Moon he was dubbed Moonbird.
Already in its third printing, the book Moonbird has won or been nominated for nine major awards, received starred reviews from six journals and made seven Best Books of 2012 lists.
“Phil has done a tremendous service by bringing this story into the public eye,” said Shorebird Recovery Project Director Charles Duncan. “If you read the book, you can’t help but care about B95 and Red Knots in general. The Fund for the Moonbirds is the opportunity to translate the book’s popularity into real conservation success.”
Hoose is a National Book Award-winning author of ten books. He has worked for The Nature Conservancy since 1977. His previous books include “The Race to Save the Lord God Bird” (about the Ivory-billed Woodpecker), “Claudette Colvin: Twice Toward Justice” and “We Were There, Too!: Young People in U.S. History.” The children’s book “Hey Little Ant,” written with his daughter, Hannah, has sold more than a million copies worldwide. Hoose lives in Maine, where he frequently collaborates with Manomet’s Shorebird Recovery Project Director, Charles Duncan.
For more than 40 years, the Manomet Center has used science and partnerships to build a more sustainable world. The Center is a non-profit research organization headquartered in Massachusetts with scientists working across North and South America.