We are very sad to report that Chris Mead, one of Britain's foremost ornithologists, died suddenly and peacefully in his sleep on 16th January 2003.
Chris had worked very closely with Jacobi Jayne & Co for some years. He was one of the motivators behind the development of our Wild Bird News catalogue and a co-founder of our Bird On! web site
He was a constant source of knowledge, enthusiasm and encouragement and will be very sadly missed.
Chris Mead has been a professional ornithologist for almost 35 years, devoting much of this time to bird ringing (banding) with the British Trust for Ornithology (BTO) in Britain. He has been closely involved in the organisation of ringing, having been head of the UK's National Ringing Scheme and, for ten years, Secretary General of the European umbrella organisation, EURING. In the late 1960's he helped devise the first computerised system for ringing information.
Chris is a Chartered Biologist and in 1996 was awarded the Union Medal by the British Ornithologists Union. His particular interests are migration and the understanding of bird populations, and his personal ringing work, involving many studies, includes fieldwork on Sand Martins, Pied Flycatchers and common UK garden birds. He has caught and ringed some 250,000 birds in 20 countries including Belize, much of Europe, Malaysia, Senegal, the USA and Zimbabwe.
Chris firmly believes that scientific work on birds should be conveyed not just to keen birdwatchers but also to those with a passing interest in birds. To this end, he is Press Officer for the BTO and contributes regularly to many publications including Bird Watching, BBC Wildlife, and British Wildlife. He has written or contributed to various books including Bird Ringing, Bird Migration, Robins, Owls and, most recently, The Atlas of Bird Migration.
Chris Mead's latest book is The State of the Nations' Birds. The complete text of the species descriptions from this book are available on Bird On! here.
Chris lives in Norfolk, England.