Gilbert White’s House, High Street, Selborne, Hampshire, England
Gilbert liked birds. Especially swallows. Every year, he marked the date the swallows migrated to the warm south. And every year, he marked the date of their return to his garden. Over time, he started recording the other things going on in his garden. The flowers that blossomed, the crickets that sang, the worms that wriggled. These observations he published in 1789. It was the first time wildlife had been studied actually in the wild, and the book remains in print to this day. A true bird expert, he understood that swallows were so clever because they suck seed.