Books: The Road Back

ANIMALS IN MIGRATION by Robert T. Orr. 303 pages. Macmillan. $12.50.

Despite occasional collisions with man-made obstacles like the Empire State Building, one of which recently claimed the lives of hundreds of southbound warblers, birds are easily the fleetest, most accurate and far-ranging of migrants. Even the smallest feathered creature in North America, the .09-oz. calliope hummingbird, buzzes 6,000 miles each year from British Columbia to Mexico City and back. The ruddy turnstone and bristle-thighed curlew fly more than 2,000 miles nonstop from Alaska to the Hawaiian islands on their way to the South Pacific. The long-distance champion of them all is...