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Halcyon Journey - In Search of the Belted Kingfisher
Halcyon Journey - In Search of the Belted Kingfisher

Tue, Oct 11


Replay Available

Halcyon Journey - In Search of the Belted Kingfisher

Marina Richie, Author and Naturalist, Co-Sponsored with Teton County Library, Photo courtesy of Marina Richie

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Time & Location

Oct 11, 2022, 6:00 PM – 7:30 PM

Replay Available

About the event

Replay Available Here.

Watch Marina Richie's presentation of her award-winning book, "Halcyon Journey: In Search of the Belted Kingfisher," published by Oregon State University Press with illustrations by Ram Papish.

Whether hovering or diving from a branch, a belted kingfisher’s headfirst plunge to snap fish near the surface is swift and precise. The jay-sized birds flourish where water is clean, and in places with plentiful fish, perches, and coveted earthen nest banks. The first book to feature North America’s beloved bird of waterways, Halcyon Journey - winner of a National Outdoor Book Award - threads natural history, memoir, and myth. The kingfisher - also known as the halcyon bird - is linked to the mythic origin of halcyon days, a state of happiness that Marina hopes to find in her pursuit of belted kingfishers on a home stream. Epiphanies and a citizen science finding punctuate seven seasons tracking elusive nesting birds on Rattlesnake Creek in Missoula, Montana.  Seeking to find out why the female belted kingfisher is more colorful than the male, Marina widens her explorations—from the back halls of the Smithsonian to the Lower Rio Grande and South Africa. To know the bird of the Greek myth, she travels to London and finds the common kingfisher in a dreamy setting.  Her far-flung adventures to meet kingfisher kin serve to deepen her relationship with the wild community of Rattlesnake Creek. In winter, she explores tribal stories of the kingfisher as messenger and helper. By the water’s edge, Marina reconciles the loss of her naturalist father and taps into her own powers, inspired by the bird of the headfirst plunge and rattling call. 

Marina Richie is a nature writer, journalist, and environmentalist living in Bend, Oregon. She is the author of two children’s books under a prior name: Bird Feats of Montana and Bug Feats of Montana. Marina has written for Birdwatching magazine, National Wildlife, Audubon, A.T. Journeys, Montana Naturalist, University of Montana’s Vision and Research View magazines, as well as literary journals, and for Montana Natural History Center's radio program, Field Notes (listen to a new field note on kingfishers here).  Marina has a master’s in journalism from the University of Montana and an undergraduate degree in biology from the University of Oregon. Please visit her website to read her bi-monthly nature blogs:  

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