Supernavigators (Hardcover)

The Astounding New Science of How Animals Find Their Way

By David Barrie

The Experiment, 9781615195374, 336pp.

Publication Date: May 28, 2019

List Price: 25.95*
* Individual store prices may vary.


A globetrotting voyage of discovery celebrating the navigational gifts of animals; from whales and lobsters to birds and beetles—and many more!

In Supernavigators, award-winning author David Barrie takes us on a tour of the cutting-edge science of animal navigation, where scientists are unraveling how creatures as various as butterflies, birds, crustaceans, fish, reptiles, and even people find their way.

Weaving interviews with leading experts on animal behavior with the groundbreaking discoveries of Nobel Prize–winning neuroscientists, Barrie introduces astounding animals of every stripe: Dung beetles that steer by the light of the Milky Way. Ants and bees that navigate using patterns of light invisible to humans. Sea turtles, spiny lobsters, and moths that find their way using Earth’s magnetic field. Salmon that return to their birthplace by following their noses. Baleen whales that swim thousands of miles while holding a rock-steady course, and birds that can locate their nests on a tiny island after crisscrossing an ocean.

There’s a stunning diversity of animal navigators out there, often using senses and skills we humans don’t have access to ourselves. For the first time, Supernavigators reveals these wonders in a whole new light.

About the Author

David Barrie, a Fellow of the Royal Institute of Navigation, has sailed all over the world and made many long passages. After serving in the British Diplomatic Service, Barrie worked in the arts and as a law-reform campaigner. His book Sextant was shortlisted for the Mountbatten Literary Award and won the Royal Institute of Navigation’s Certificate of Achievement. The great-great-nephew of J. M. Barrie, he is married with two daughters.