Kevin Zimmer

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Kevin Zimmer has authored three books and numerous papers dealing with field identification and bird-finding in North America. His book, Birding in the American West: A Handbook, deals with finding and identifying birds in the western United States. Living in Alaska contributed to his affection for the Far North, where he has anchored VENT’s tour program since 1986. For the past 25+ years he has concentrated his attention on the Neotropics, particularly on Brazil, Costa Rica, Panama, Peru, and Venezuela. He has directed VENT’s Brazil program since 1991. In the past decade, he has rekindled a love affair with the birds and wildlife of Africa, an interest that began as a young boy (watching Marlin Perkins on Mutual of Omaha’s Wild Kingdom), but which blossomed with his first trip to Kenya in 1987 and leading several tours there through 1998. Following his return to Africa after a hiatus of more than a decade, his yearly tours to Africa have taken him to Tanzania, Uganda, and Ethiopia. Kevin has a PhD in biology (research emphasis in Avian Evolutionary Ecology) from New Mexico State University, and is a Research Associate of the Los Angeles County Museum of Natural History, an elective member of the American Ornithologists’ Society (AOS), and a member of the A.O.S. South American Classification Committee (SACC). He formerly served two terms on the American Birding Association (ABA) Check-list Committee, and is a regular contributor to Cornell’s Macaulay Library of Natural Sounds. He has authored numerous technical papers on the taxonomy, distribution, and behavior of Neotropical birds, particularly those of the Amazon Basin. In 2003 he completed (with co-author Mort Isler) the major chapter on the Thamnophilidae (antbirds) for the prestigious Handbook of Birds of the World series. In 2006, he and Curtis Marantz coauthored a six-CD compilation of Bird Voices of Alta Floresta and Southeastern Amazonian Brazil (produced by the Cornell Laboratory of Ornithology’s Macaulay Library of Natural Sounds) that represents the most comprehensive set of commercially available bird recordings for any part of the Amazon Basin. He and Andrew Whittaker are currently at work on a comprehensive field guide to the birds of Brazil, to be published by Princeton University Press. Kevin lives in Atascadero, California with his wife, Susan. Their daughter, Marina, is a licensed Marriage and Family Therapist (MFT). She and her husband, Ryan, and their daughter, Brinn, are now living in Napa, California.