THE SONG OF THE DODO

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The Song Of The Dodo

Author : David Quammen
ISBN : 9781448137404
Genre : Nature
File Size : 55.95 MB
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Why have island ecosystems always suffered such high rates of extinction? In our age, with all the world's landscapes, from Tasmania to the Amazon to Yellowstone, now being carved into island-like fragments by human activity, the implications of this question are more urgent than ever. Over the past eight years, David Quammen has followed the threads of island biogeography on a globe-encircling journey of discovery.
Category: Nature

Lost Land Of The Dodo

Author : Anthony Cheke
ISBN : 9781408133057
Genre : Science
File Size : 78.39 MB
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The Mascarene islands in the southern Indian Ocean - Mauritius, Réunion and Rodrigues - were once home to an extraordinary range of birds and reptiles. Evolving on these isolated volcanic islands in the absence of mammalian predators or competitors, the land was dominated by giant tortoises, parrots, skinks and geckos, burrowing boas, flightless rails & herons, and of course (in Mauritius) the Dodo. Uninhabited and only discovered in the 1500s, colonisation by European settlers in the 1600s led to dramatic changes in the ecology of the islands; the birds and tortoises were slaughtered indiscriminately while introduced rats, cats, pigs and monkeys destroyed their eggs, the once-extensive forests logged, and invasive introduced plants from all over the tropics devastated the ecosystem. The now-familiar icon of extinction, the Dodo, was gone from Mauritius within 50 years of human settlement, and over the next 150 years many of the Mascarenes' other native vertebrates followed suit. The product of over 30 years research by Anthony Cheke, Lost Land of the Dodo provides a comprehensive yet hugely enjoyable account of the story of the islands' changing ecology, interspersed with human stories, the islands' biogeographical anomalies, and much else. Many French publications, old and new, especially for Réunion, are discussed and referenced in English for the first time. The book is richly illustrated with maps and contemporary illustrations of the animals and their environment, many of which have rarely been reprinted before. Illustrated box texts look in detail at each extinct vertebrate species, while Julian Hume's superb colour plates bring many of the extinct birds to life. Lost Land of the Dodo provides the definitive account of this tragic yet remarkable fauna, and is a must-read for anyone interested in islands, their ecology and the history of our relationship with the world around us.
Category: Science

The Flight Of The Iguana

Author : David Quammen
ISBN : 9781476728735
Genre : Nature
File Size : 59.34 MB
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From the award-winning author of The Song of the Dodo comes a collection of essays in which various weird and wonderful aspects of nature are examined. This book contains tales of vegetarian piranha fish, voiceless dogs, and a scientific search for the genes that threaten to destroy the cheetah.
Category: Nature

The Blue Sapphire Of The Mind

Author : Douglas E. Christie
ISBN : 9780199986644
Genre : Religion
File Size : 45.50 MB
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"There are no unsacred places," the poet Wendell Berry has written. "There are only sacred places and desecrated places." What might it mean to behold the world with such depth and feeling that it is no longer possible to imagine it as something separate from ourselves, or to live without regard for its well-being? To understand the work of seeing things as an utterly involving moral and spiritual act? Such questions have long occupied the center of contemplative spiritual traditions. In The Blue Sapphire of the Mind, Douglas E. Christie proposes a distinctively contemplative approach to ecological thought and practice that can help restore our sense of the earth as a sacred place. Drawing on the insights of the early Christian monastics as well as the ecological writings of Henry David Thoreau, Aldo Leopold, Annie Dillard, and many others, Christie argues that, at the most basic level, it is the quality of our attention to the natural world that must change if we are to learn how to live in a sustainable relationship with other living organisms and with one another. He notes that in this uniquely challenging historical moment, there is a deep and pervasive hunger for a less fragmented and more integrated way of apprehending and inhabiting the living world--and for a way of responding to the ecological crisis that expresses our deepest moral and spiritual values. Christie explores how the wisdom of ancient and modern contemplative traditions can inspire both an honest reckoning with the destructive patterns of thought and behavior that have contributed so much to our current crisis, and a greater sense of care and responsibility for all living beings. These traditions can help us cultivate the simple, spacious awareness of the enduring beauty and wholeness of the natural world that will be necessary if we are to live with greater purpose and meaning, and with less harm, to our planet.
Category: Religion

The Song Of Mat And Ben

Author : Joan Aiken
ISBN : 9781448101504
Genre : Juvenile Fiction
File Size : 39.20 MB
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There is eerie trouble once again in the Cornish village of St Boan, often known as Thunder's Pocket. Some hundred-year-old water pipes are being replaced and the digging has disturbed the ghosts of the past, namely the twins Matthew and Ben Pernel who were killed in mysterious circumstances and their musician father blamed. The three are now trying to be reunited but less innocent forces are also at work and the present townspeople are involved as the unhappy incidents of a hundred years ago are relived. Aunt Lal calls on her nephew Ned to help. She believes only he can bring the Pernels together again and thus truly bury the past. But even Ned is not immune to the horrors of the disturbed spirits. A thrilling sequel to In Thunder's Pocket by this prestigious author.
Category: Juvenile Fiction

Mount Mitchell And The Black Mountains

Author : Timothy Silver
ISBN : 9780807863145
Genre : Nature
File Size : 76.81 MB
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Each year, thousands of tourists visit Mount Mitchell, the most prominent feature of North Carolina's Black Mountain range and the highest peak in the eastern United States. From Native Americans and early explorers to land speculators and conservationists, people have long been drawn to this rugged region. Timothy Silver explores the long and complicated history of the Black Mountains, drawing on both the historical record and his experience as a backpacker and fly fisherman. He chronicles the geological and environmental forces that created this intriguing landscape, then traces its history of environmental change and human intervention from the days of Indian-European contact to today. Among the many tales Silver recounts is that of Elisha Mitchell, the renowned geologist and University of North Carolina professor for whom Mount Mitchell is named, who fell to his death there in 1857. But nature's stories--of forest fires, chestnut blight, competition among plants and animals, insect invasions, and, most recently, airborne toxins and acid rain--are also part of Silver's narrative, making it the first history of the Appalachians in which the natural world gets equal time with human history. It is only by understanding the dynamic between these two forces, Silver says, that we can begin to protect the Black Mountains for future generations.
Category: Nature

Plant Life Of Kentucky

Author : Ronald L. Jones
ISBN : 9780813137209
Genre : Nature
File Size : 27.61 MB
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Plant Life of Kentucky is the first comprehensive guide to all the ferns, flowering herbs, and woody plants of the state. This long-awaited work provides identification keys for Kentucky's 2,600 native and naturalized vascular plants, with notes on wildlife/human uses, poisonous plants, and medicinal herbs. The common name, flowering period, habitat, distribution, rarity, and wetland status are given for each species, and about 80 percent are illustrated with line drawings. The inclusion of 250 additional species from outside the state (these species are "to be expected" in Kentucky) broadens the regional coverage, and most plants occurring from northern Alabama to southern Ohio to the Mississippi River (an area of wide similarity in flora) are examined, including nearly all the plants of western and central Tennessee. The author also describes prehistoric and historical changes in the flora, natural regions and plant communities, significant botanists, current threats to plant life, and a plan for future studies. Plant Life of Kentucky is intended as a research tool for professionals in biology and related fields, and as a resource for students, amateur naturalists, and others interested in understanding and preserving our rich botanical heritage.
Category: Nature

Plant Life Of A Desert Archipelago

Author : Richard S Felger
ISBN : 9780816502431
Genre : Science
File Size : 83.72 MB
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Plant Life of a Desert Archipelago is the first in-depth coverage of the plants on islands in the Gulf of California found in between the coasts of Baja California and Sonora. Their collective effort weaves together careful and accurate botanical science with the rich cultural and stunning physical setting of this island realm.
Category: Science