80 pages, 4 plates with 12 colour photos; b/w illustrations, tables
Relatives of these bizarre creatures were walking the Earth before primates had descended from the trees. And yet echidnas and their fellow monotreme, the platypus, are exceedingly well adapted to their environmental niche.
Echidnas of Australia and New Guinea describes the echidna's lifestyle and the adaptations that have made it so biologically successful. Drawing on two centuries of scientific literature and years of devoted echidna research, the authors have come up with a fascinating book which will appeal not only to students of natural history butalso to the general reader. Accompanying the text are some remarkable anatomical illustrations by Anne Musser.
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Michael Augee is a senior lecturer in the School of Biological Sciences at the University of New South Wales. His life-long fascination with echidnas began when, as a newly arrived immigrant, he agreed to carry out a research project on them before he had actually seen one or knew anything of their biology. Over the years he has shared his enthusiasm for echidnas and the bush with Brett Gooden who is a GP and known for his writings on space exploration and for research into the fundamentals of diving physiology. His unflagging interest in all aspects of nature have contributed to the breadth of this book.