406 pages, B/w illus, figs
An inspiring work by this eminent scientist and conservationist. Wilson traces the processes that create new species in bursts of adaptive radiation, and identifies the five major extinctions of the last 600 million years. Each cataclysmic event, caused by a meteorite strike or climatic change, required 10-100 million years of evolutionary repair. The lessons are clear - the sixth major extinction, caused this time entirely by man - could ultimately be the greatest of them all. Drawing on evidence and examples from around the world, the author argues forcibly that the conflicting forces of economic development and natural preservation must be reconciled if the world's biological diversity is to be saved. A great book.
From the text: `Consider this: Of the estimated 10 million species of plants and animals alive in the world's rain forests, a minimum of 27,000 go extinct each year; 74 each day; 3 each hour'
`Edward Wilson is today's towering figure in American Biological Literature. Not since Darwin has an author so lifted the science of ecology with insight and delightful imagery.' Richard Dawkins. New edition includes an extensive new forward by the author.
Not since Darwin has an author so lifted the science of ecology with insight and delightful imagery - Richard Dawkins"
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Edward O. Wilson is the Pellegrino University Research Professor and Honorary Curator in Entomology at Harvard University. He is the author of SOCIOBIOLOGY, the two Pulitzer Prize-winning works ON HUMAN NATURE and THE ANTS, and the bestselling CONSILIENCE.