Friday, November 15, 2019

Bengt Berg (the Ornithologist)

What are the chances of finding a boinero of identical names (first name and surname)? Here is one; see yesterday’s post for Bengt Berg, the Poet.
Bengt Magnus Kristoffer Berg (1885 –1967) was a Swedish ornithologist, zoologist, wildlife photographer, and writer.
Bengt Berg was one of the world’s first nature filmers. He was one of the very first nature photographers and filmers and also one of the very top in the world of his time. He started photographing at around 1910. At the Victoria theatre in Berlin, the biggest "cinematograph theatre" at the time, he would explain to the audience from a speaker’s chair during his soundless films. During one consecutive period of four months there was full house (2600 people each show) twice a day every day. He was also the author of almost 30 books translated into 16 languages. His books were full of wildlife photographs and questioning, humorous stories from Sweden, Africa, India, Bhutan and the Himalayas. 
He was a vivid debater of various subjects to do with birds, flora, fauna in general. More than often his booming voice or pen would declare that man was taking far too greedy or indeed urban view and place in nature. Bengt Berg was many things beside a photographer and a writer. He was also a hunter and a believer in a natural life as a being among other animals. But first and foremost his love was birds and in his writing he was never far from words declaring his passion for the winged creatures surrounding us all: Thanks to him the sea eagle, the greylag goose, the golden eagle and the mute swan of Sweden were saved.

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