Fierce, menacing, and mysterious, badgers have fascinated humans as living animals, abstract symbols, or commercial resources for thousands of years—often to their detriment. With their reputation for determined self-defense, they have been brutalized by hunters and sportsmen, while their association with the mythic underworld has made them idealized symbols of earth-based wisdom and their burrowing habits have resulted in their widespread persecution as pests. In this highly illustrated book, Daniel Heath Justice provides the first global cultural history of the badger in over thirty years.
From the iconic European badger and its North American kin to the African honey badger and Southeast Asian hog badger, Justice considers the badger’s evolution and widespread distribution alongside its current, often-imperiled status throughout the world. He travels from natural history and life in the wild to the folklore, legends, and spiritual beliefs that badgers continue to inspire, while also exploring their representation and exploitation in industry, religion, and the arts. Tracing the complex and contradictory ways in which this fascinating animal endures, Badger will appeal to anyone interested in a deeper understanding of these much-maligned creatures.
Edited by Thomas H. Kunz and M. Brock Fenton University of Chicago Press, 2003 Library of Congress QL737.C5B3594 2003 | Dewey Decimal 599.417
In recent years researchers have discovered that bats play key roles in many ecosystems as insect predators, seed dispersers, and pollinators. Bats also display astonishing ecological and evolutionary diversity and serve as important models for studies of a wide variety of topics, including food webs, biogeography, and emerging diseases. In Bat Ecology, world-renowned bat scholars present an up-to-date, comprehensive, and authoritative review of this ongoing research.
The first part of the book covers the life history and behavioral ecology of bats, from migration to sperm competition and natural selection. The next section focuses on functional ecology, including ecomorphology, feeding, and physiology. In the third section, contributors explore macroecological issues such as the evolution of ecological diversity, range size, and infectious diseases (including rabies) in bats. A final chapter discusses conservation challenges facing these fascinating flying mammals.
Bat Ecology is the most comprehensive state-of-the-field collection for scientists and researchers.
John D. Altringham, Robert M. R. Barclay, Tenley M. Conway, Elizabeth R. Dumont, Peggy Eby, Abigail C. Entwistle, Theodore H. Fleming, Patricia W. Freeman, Lawrence D. Harder, Gareth Jones, Linda F. Lumsden, Gary F. McCracken, Sharon L. Messenger, Bruce D. Patterson, Paul A. Racey, Jens Rydell, Charles E. Rupprecht, Nancy B. Simmons, Jean S. Smith, John R. Speakman, Richard D. Stevens, Elizabeth F. Stockwell, Sharon M. Swartz, Donald W. Thomas, Otto von Helversen, Gerald S. Wilkinson, Michael R. Willig, York Winter
There are more than 1,300 species of bats—or almost a quarter of the world’s mammal species. But before you shrink in fear from these furry “creatures of the night,” consider the bat’s fundamental role in our ecosystem. A single brown bat can eat several thousand insects in a night. Bats also pollinate and disperse the seeds for many of the plants we love, from bananas to mangoes and figs.
Bats: A World of Science and Mystery presents these fascinating nocturnal creatures in a new light. Lush, full-color photographs portray bats in flight, feeding, and mating in views that show them in exceptional detail. The photos also take the reader into the roosts of bats, from caves and mines to the tents some bats build out of leaves. A comprehensive guide to what scientists know about the world of bats, the book begins with a look at bats’ origins and evolution. The book goes on to address a host of questions related to flight, diet, habitat, reproduction, and social structure: Why do some bats live alone and others in large colonies? When do bats reproduce and care for their young? How has the ability to fly—unique among mammals—influenced bats’ mating behavior? A chapter on biosonar, or echolocation, takes readers through the system of high-pitched calls bats emit to navigate and catch prey. More than half of the world’s bat species are either in decline or already considered endangered, and the book concludes with suggestions for what we can do to protect these species for future generations to benefit from and enjoy.
From the tiny “bumblebee bat”—the world’s smallest mammal—to the Giant Golden-Crowned Flying Fox, whose wingspan exceeds five feet, A Battery of Bats presents a panoramic view of one of the world’s most fascinating yet least-understood species.
Since antiquity, bats have been misunderstood and shrouded in mystery. Given misnomers such as fledermaus ("flying mouse") and murciegalo ("blind mouse"), these nocturnal flying mammals were even classified as primates by the great Carl Linnaeus, based on his knowledge of the anatomy of large Old World fruit bats. In this beautifully illustrated volume, bat specialist Rick A. Adams delves into bats' true nature and the roles these fascinating ledurblaka ("leather flutterers") play in the natural history and ecology of the Rocky Mountain West.
Bats of the Rocky Mountain West begins with a general discussion of bat biology and evolution as well as regional physiography and zoogeography. In addition, Adams describes - based on the results of extensive research - the behavior and ecology of the 31 species of bats found in Montana, Idaho, Wyoming, Utah, Colorado, New Mexico, and Arizona. Naturalists and biologists alike will benefit from the detailed species descriptions, color photographs and illustrations, distribution maps, and echolocation sonograms. Bats of the Rocky Mountain West is a unique and valuable reference for professional bat biologists, naturalists, and wildlife enthusiasts interested in the conservation and ecology of bats in the region.
In The Black-Tailed Prairie Dog, John L. Hoogland draws on sixteen years of research at Wind Cave National Park, South Dakota, in the United States to provide this account of prairie dog social behavior. Through comparisons with more than 300 other animal species, he offers new insights into basic theory in behavioral ecology and sociobiology.
Hoogland documents interactions within and among families of prairie dogs to examine the advantages and disadvantages of coloniality. By addressing such topics as male and female reproductive success, inbreeding, kin recognition, and infanticide, Hoogland offers a broad view of conflict and cooperation. Among his surprising findings is that prairie dog females sometimes suckle, and at other times kill, the offspring of close kin.
Enhanced by more than 100 photographs, this book illuminates the social organization of a burrowing mammal and raises fundamental questions about current theory. As the most detailed long-term study of any social rodent, The Black-Tailed Prairie Dog will interest not only mammalogists and other vertebrate biologists, but also students of behavioral and evolutionary ecology.
As explorers and scientists have known for decades, the Neotropics harbor a fantastic array of our planet’s mammalian diversity, from capybaras and capuchins to maned wolves and mouse opossums to sloths and sakis. This biological bounty can be attributed partly to the striking diversity of Neotropical landscapes and climates and partly to a series of continental connections that permitted intermittent faunal exchanges with Africa, Antarctica, Australia, and North America. Thus, to comprehend the development of modern Neotropical mammal faunas requires not only mastery of the Neotropics’ substantial diversity, but also knowledge of mammalian lineages and landscapes dating back to the Mesozoic.
Bones, Clones, and Biomes offers just that—an exploration of the development and relationships of the modern mammal fauna through a series of studies that encompass the last 100 million years and both Central and South America. This work serves as a complement to more taxonomically driven works, providing for readers the long geologic and biogeographic contexts that undergird the abundance and diversity of Neotropical mammals. Rather than documenting diversity or distribution, this collection traverses the patterns that the distributions and relationships across mammal species convey, bringing together for the first time geology, paleobiology, systematics, mammalogy, and biogeography. Of critical importance is the book’s utility for current conservation and management programs, part of a rapidly rising conservation paleobiology initiative.
In Bring Back the Buffalo!, Ernest Callenbach argues that the return of the bison is the key to a sustainable future for the Great Plains. Vast stretches of the region have seen a steady decline in population and are ill-suited for traditional agriculture or cattle ranching. Yet those same areas provide ideal habitat for bison.
Callenbach explores the past history, present situation, and future potential of bison in North America as he examines what can and should be done to re-establish bison as a significant presence in the American landscape. He looks forward with high hopes to a time when vast herds of buffalo provide permanent sustenance to the rural inhabitants of the Great Plains and again play a central role in the balance of nature.