David Lukas Bio

David Lukas is a naturalist and author. He grew up on the Oregon coast then went to high school and college in the Portland area. From a very early age David started studying field guides and closely observing plants and animals in the model of legendary naturalists like Charles Darwin, Konrad Lorenz, and Gerald Durrell. He soon began carrying out his own investigations and joined professional scientific organizations so he could study scientific journals and learn how to set up his own experiments. In high school, his family moved to the Portland area and David began spending time in the research lab at the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry, where he joined an active group of young scientists and biologists who spent all their free time exploring the wild landscapes of Oregon.

David attended Reed College in Portland but missed these free-ranging explorations of the natural world so he dropped out and began traveling and working on scientific field projects all over the western United States and around the world. While working on a Harvard research team in Borneo, David decided to become a writer because it offered a way to travel while still working on intellectually rigorous projects.

After several more years of traveling and leading nature tours in Central America, David began living and working with the Pulitzer Prize-winning poet, Gary Snyder. It was then that David turned his focus to writing and he eventually returned to Reed College to pursue a degree in English.

David now works as a well-known professional naturalist who has led thousands of classes, tours, walks, workshops, and lectures. He has written around 300 articles for newspapers and magazines, including a weekly column in the Los Angeles Times newspaper and articles for a huge variety of magazines such as Audubon, Orion, and BBC Wildlife. David is the author of seven books, including two very popular guidebooks to birds, Bay Area Birds and Sierra Nevada Birds (www.lukasguides.com). He has also contributed chapters to about 40 other books, including a wide range of travel books for Lonely Planet.