With the ever-increasing impacts of climate change, habitat destruction, global population and the unsustainable farming of livestock, it seems all too likely that deadly zoonotic diseases will shape the 21st century. We think of dangerous widlife as the fin of the shark cutting through the shallows or the tiger hunting its prey, but the greater threat comes from the microscopic killers passed from animals to humans.
Taking this major human health issue and exploring it from the perspective of a biologist, Death by Nature? combs the natural world for causes, clues and cures to some of the greatest threats we face.
Each chapter includes exclusive interviews from leading professionals: scientists, conservationists and virus hunters all on the front line of discovering and combatting these diseases. We need to understand wildlife diseases. Now may be our last chance to reset economies, restore degraded land, make our cities cleaner and conserve biodiversity.
Ben Garrod is Professor of Evolutionary Biology and Science Engagement at the University of East Anglia. He broadcasts regularly on TV and radio and is trustee and ambassador of a number of key conservation organisations. He lives in Bristol. His previous books include So You Think You Know About... Dinosaurs? and The Chimpanzee & Me, published by Zephyr.