After graduating in zoology and botany from Bangor University, Lance Tickell joined the British Antarctic Survey and spent two and a half years in the South Orkney Islands. A study of the Dove Prion formed the basis of an M.Sc. dissertation at the Edward Grey Institute in Oxford under David Lack, and research on albatrosses in South Georgia over the next six years gained him a Ph.D. His subsequent career included working for the Nature Conservancy in Shetland and Orkney, as a lecturer in various African universities, and as a producer of natural history television in Bristol. Whilst working for the BBC, he directed a documentary about albatrosses, Marathon Birds, and was one of the producers of the acclaimed series Life in the Freezer. Throughout his career, he has retained a passion for albatrosses and has undertaken research on every species at various times. He began writing this book in 1984 while lecturing at the University of Bradford.