Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Catch Me a Colobus” as Want to Read:
Catch Me a Colobus
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Catch Me a Colobus

4.06  ·  Rating details ·  1,399 ratings  ·  36 reviews
A pot-pourri of animal anecdotes, based on hectic days at the author's Jersey zoo and his forays to various corners of the earth to rescue animal species in danger of extinction. First published in 1972.
Paperback, 221 pages
Published 1975 by Fontana Books (first published 1972)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Catch Me a Colobus, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Catch Me a Colobus

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
4.06  · 
Rating details
 ·  1,399 ratings  ·  36 reviews

Sort order
Oct 28, 2013 rated it really liked it
If you’ve never read anything by the late English naturalist Gerald Durrell, you’re in for an absolute treat. I’d recommend starting with The Corfu Trilogy, his hilarious account of growing up on a Greek island in an eccentric family that also included novelist Lawrence Durrell. Yet he is perhaps best known for his wonderfully readable travelogues describing international animal collecting journeys. This is, I think, the third one I’ve read so far, and though they do all follow a similar pattern ...more
Metodi Markov
Jun 03, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: adventure, favorites, uk
С голямо удоволствие чета и препрочитам книгите на Джералд Даръл.

В "Хванете ми колобус" са описани трудностите при запазването на зоологическата му градина и създаването на тръста за опазване на дивата природа на остров Джързи, както и експедиция за улов на диви животни в Сиера Леоне и такава до Мексико. Научаваме и много за живота на гледачите в градината, както и за този на техните питомци.

Написана с чуство за хумор и самоирония, книгата се чете буквално за часове. :)
Sep 05, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 1970s, animals
This, the first of the Gerald Durrell books I read encouraged finding more his animal collecting stories. That interest wasn't long sustained, but I'm glad to have gotten to know a bit of Durrell's world.
Iona  Stewart
Dec 30, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I love Gerry Durrell and all his books, also this one.

Gerry loved animals, and his main aim was to stop the extinction of as many animals as possible by going on expeditions to Africa and South America in order to catch threatened animals and bring them to his Jersey zoo (when this had been established) in order to breed and thus preserve them.

He wrote these wonderful books, not for the love of writing them (in fact he mostly hated it), or to become a famous author, but to finance his animal—cat
Aug 21, 2015 rated it really liked it
Written for my blog, Tabula Rasa.

In this memoir-like book, Durrell has returned from a trip to Australia, only to find his zoo in shambles. In Catch Me A Colobus, he recounts how they set up the Durrell Wildlife Conservation Trust, found sponsors and eventually built the zoo back into shape. The first half of the book is a compilation of vignettes expansing about seven years at Durrell's Jersey Zoo. From escaped chimps, pregnant tapirs and bullying parrots to stories of the strange characters th
Txe Polon
Este volumen no solo narra hechos más tristes (pero inherentes a la labor del conservacionista) que otros del mismo autor, sino que en general el tono es menos humorístico. En general es una obra menos elaborada, y algunos capítulos son más bien malos, careciendo de la unidad que suele caracterizarlos y de la estructura circular que en otros volúmenes convertían los relatos en obras de ingeniería. Los primeros cuatro capítulos son los peores (especialmente malo es "El señor D. y la señora D.", q ...more
Apr 15, 2013 rated it really liked it
I think this excerpt sums up everything I love about this book in particular, and Gerald Durrell in general. He's like PG Wodehouse. A Wodehouse who loves animals of all shapes and sizes, from Colobus monkeys to police dogs.
'Now,' said Ambrose, 'to show how obedient they are their trainers will tell them to sit where they are, and then the trainers would go to the other side of the studio and you will see how the dogs would obey them.'
The trainers told the dogs to sit, which they did in a panti
Leore Joanne Green
Apr 22, 2007 rated it it was amazing
Gerald Durrell! I have certainly missed his writing. I forgot how well he writes. Funny, flowing, interesting and with a fantastic vocabulary.
I had a bit of a rough time reading about the accidents which happened in the zoo, but it was a terrific book and I finished it so fast.

Great great great!

Bionic Jean
Durrell's travels in search of exotic animals while he was based at Jersey Zoo.
Irene Lazlo
Como siempre, siendo Gerald Durrell me ha encantado. Probablemente éste haya sido el libro más triste de este autor que he leído porque en él mueren más animales que en cualquiera de los otros que he leído. Aún así, siempre me había preguntado cómo sería ese aspecto de cazar animales y tener un zoo: la posibilidad de la muerte de esos animales. En este libro se entiende muy bien la frustración y el proceso que va detrás: la autopsia, el evitar que vuelva a ocurrir a otras especies... Aún así, ta ...more
I grew up on these books, along with James Herriot's novels, so I always love to read them again, revisiting my childhood dreams (I wanted to be just like Gerald Durrell, and live on a Greek island). They never get old, are always entertaining, and give you a glimpse into the world of the professional naturalist etc. I love reading about the antics of the animals, some of whom have more personality than most humans, and getting to read about the wonderful places the author describes. Always a fu ...more
Написание книг превратилось для Даррелла в рутину. Он честно говорит – его литературная деятельность направлена на привлечение средств к созданным им зоопарку и тресту по охране дикой природы. Поэтому не следует искать логичности в повествовании. Джеральд писал обо всём, лишь бы заполнить страницы текстом. От читателя требовалось только купить книгу, дабы уже тем поддержать начинания Даррелла.

(c) Trounin
Jul 18, 2017 rated it it was amazing
An amazing journey of Durrell in far away places to collect exotic animals for his zoo. The details about places he visits, people and life their adds to the excitement. His writing style hooks you and makes you sympathetic to the cause of animals around us. A must read for children and adults alike.
Khushnuma Daruwala
Oct 31, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I'm pretty sure I wrote him a letter when I read it as a child. And I did once again when I re-read this book. (Not him personally but his trust). His writing and the work he and his team have been doing over the years is commendable. That his books make you want to reach out and get involved is a testament to his writing. His books are the trust's best advocates.
Nov 26, 2017 rated it really liked it
This is a pleasant and enjoyable book by Gerald Durrell who, after returning from a long expedition abroad, attempts to rejuvenate his somewhat rundown and almost penniless Jersey zoo, and of his efforts in creating the Jersey Wildlife Preservation Trust. A must-read for animal conservationists.
Ridwan Anam
May 08, 2017 rated it liked it
Good, but not the best. Typical Gerald Durrell - a combination of humor, wit and animals. Fantastic story telling. Worth reading again.
Donnie Darko
Lo mejo del libro se concentra en los últimos tres capítulos :'
Debbie Curtis
Jun 03, 2017 rated it it was amazing
So special. My grandad bought me this as a hard-back book. I still have it.
Daiva Vanagė
Sep 20, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Labai smagi, lengva. Skaitant lydejo mielumo pojutis. Rekomenduoju:) Knyga apie zoo sodo isgelbejima, gyvunu paieskas ir isdaigas:)
Apr 13, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I’m having a Gerald Durrell summer! Catch Me a Colobus starts in his Jersey Zoo, with another “Chumley” story – both he and his mate, Sheena, are now so large and strong that when they get out, getting them back to their cages is no longer an easy matter. They manage to trap the two chimps in a staff bedroom, where they play joyfully, washing their hands in the sink, bursting feather pillows and the mattress (and clogging the sink, faucets aflow, in the process), and generally having a high time ...more
Ratna Deepika
Jul 06, 2016 rated it really liked it
Durrell's love for animals is contagious, as is his commitment to conserving them. I love that his books are not full of facts and figures but interesting and hilarious anecdotes from his childhood and from his time as a conservationist capturing and breeding rare animals in captivity.

"When asked, as frequently as I am, why I should concern myself so deeply, I reply that I think the reason is that I have been a very lucky man and throughout my life, the world has given me the most enormous pleas
Feb 29, 2012 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: nature, non-fiction
This is another one of those books that I found shelved randomly among a bunch of unrelated books at my grandmother's house. Interestingly enough, it is a copy from the Oshkosh Public Library in Wisconsin. Since, to my knowledge, my grandmother never ventured to Wisconsin, I can only guess that she bought it from a used book store somewhere else.

As for the story, I thought the tales of taking care of the many animals at Durrell's Zoo were hilarious, but by the time he left for his second collec
Charlotte FitzGerald
Hugge is all the rage right now but if you want a really heart-warming book to cosy up with, this classic has it all. Gerald Durrell must have been a really lovely man and in his books he has such a fresh and generous take on life. His stories about running a zoo and catching endangered species in the wild for conservation purposes, in the first half of the twentieth century - back when conservation meant quite different things from what it does today - is told with such warmth and energy that y ...more
Lady Clementina ffinch-ffarowmore
Observing or working with animals (or nature in general) brings a sense of wonder, amazement, joy, laughter and also a fair bit of heartbreak. This collection of Durrell’s anecdotes about his Jersey zoo and his expeditions to Africa and South America brings out all these and more. Durrell ends by stressing on the need for conservation bringing up also the rather foolish attitude that people seem to have towards it, though their own lives are also impacted.
Jan 28, 2017 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Nemėgstu nei knygų, nei filmų apie gyvūnus, nors pačius gyvūnus mėgstu labiau nei žmones. Knygelę skaičiau ir vieną žvaigždutę pridėjau vien iš pagarbos nostalgijai, kurią sukėlė viršelis ir knygoje esantys paveiksliukai, nes kada jei ne vaikystėje mes įdėmiausiai ir nuoširdžiausiai juos apžiūrinėjam, išnagrinėjam ir savaip įsisąmoninam :)
Dec 06, 2009 rated it really liked it
Shelves: animals
Fond though distant memories of this book found on my mother's bookshelves possibly around Jr. High years. I think I'd question it more now as he was actively pursuing wild animals (the different varieties of colobus monkeys) to take back to his zoo, but enjoyed the animal stories at the time.
Ivan Stoikov - Allan Bard
Great adventures with animals! About a great cause - to preserve the life of the living beings on our planet... Besides, there's a lot of humour, as in any books of the famous naturalist Gerald Durrell!
Jul 26, 2011 rated it really liked it
Another one of Durrell's short story collections with the breeding of the Colobus monkey the epicantre of the collection. At first I was always a little apprehensive of this book but after a couple of spins it has become a firm favourite.
Aug 18, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: animals
I don't think Durrell has ever written a poor book. This was one I enjoyed a great deal. It has been a while since I read it so don't expect much in the way of details. He did end up catching some Colobus monkeys but it was quite a challenge as I recall!
Dec 02, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Another childhood book that I read over and over again. Enchanting.
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • Gerald Durrell: The Authorized Biography
  • The Spotted Sphinx
  • Zoo Vet: Adventures Of A Wild Animal Doctor
  • Among the Elephants
  • Vet in Harness
  • Tomorrow to be Brave: A Memoir of the Only Woman Ever to Serve in the French Foreign Legion
  • Saving the White Lions: One Woman's Battle for Africa's Most Sacred Animal
  • A Plague of Caterpillars (The Innocent Anthropologist #2)
  • Blue Meridian: The Search for the Great White Shark
  • The Living Planet
  • Snakes with Wings and Gold-digging Ants
  • The Great Penguin Rescue: 40,000 Penguins, a Devastating Oil Spill, and the Inspiring Story of the World's Largest Animal Rescue
  • Zarafa: A Giraffe's True Story, from Deep in Africa to the Heart of Paris
  • Flyaway: How A Wild Bird Rehabber Sought Adventure and Found Her Wings
  • If Bees Are Few: A Hive of Bee Poems
  • The Unlikely Secret Agent
  • That Quail, Robert
  • Wildlife Wars: My Fight to Save Africa's Natural Treasures
Gerald "Gerry" Malcolm Durrell was born in India in 1925. His family settled on Corfu when Durrell was a boy and he spent his time studying its wildlife. He relates these experiences in the trilogy beginning with My Family and Other Animals, and continuing with Birds, Beasts and Relatives and The Garden of the Gods. In his books he writes with wry humour and great perception about both the humans ...more