301 pages, B/w illus, figs
New study of river systems in the United States, written for a general audience.
From the publisher's announcement:
This important and accessible book surveys the history and present condition of river systems across the United States, showing how human activities have impoverished our rivers and impaired the connections between river worlds and other ecosystems. Ellen Wohl begins by introducing the basic physical, chemical, and biological processes operating in rivers. She then addresses changes in rivers resulting from settlement and expansion, describes the growth of federal involvement in managing rivers, and examines the recent efforts to rehabilitate and conserve river ecosystems. In each chapter she focuses on a specific regional case study and describes what happens to a particular river organism - a bird, North America's largest salamander, the paddlefish, and the American alligator - when people interfere with natural processes.
This book tells a story that few Americans know. We drink from rivers, swim in them, and admire their beauty, without realizing how much their discharge has been manipulated and their quality reduced. Robert Carson, Whitman College "This important and original book contains one of the best compilations of human impacts on rivers that can be found." Douglas Thompson, Connecticut College "The wealth of historical detail in this book will be of value to students of river science as well as to those advocating improvements in river condition." Judy L. Meyer, University of Georgia"
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