Macquarie Island, a speck of land rising from the Southern Ocean about 1,000 km south-east of Tasmania, is a wild and beautiful place. Declared a nature reserve in 1933, the island is of immense scientific interest, providing scientists with an opportunity to study unique geological features and to examine the special characteristics of a southern island ecosystem. The authors, drawing on their own extensive observations as well as on the published work of others, have produced a book of wide appeal.
A brief description of the island and its setting and the history of its discovery and subsequent human occupation precedes more detailed accounts of the geomorphology and quaternary history of the island, its vegetation, avifauna, mammals, microbiology and marine and freshwater environments. In the concluding chapter the authors discuss past mismanagement and future management strategies, with a view to conserving the island's unique environment and biology. This fascinating and readable account will appeal to all those interested in the Antarctic region in general and to biologists, geologists and conservationists with a particular interest in island habitats and environments.
Paperback re-issue; originally published in 1990.
List of figures; List of tables; Preface; 1. Introduction; 2. Discovery and human occupation; 3. The island and its setting; 4. The island's origin and geology; 5. Geomorphology and quaternary history; 6. The island's vegetation; 7. Lakes; 8. The island's birds; 9. Mammals - indigenous and introduced; 10. Microbiology, parasitology and terrestrial arthropods; 11. The nearshore environment; 12. Human effects: from mis-management to management strategies; Appendices; References; Index.
...stands up as the most up to date review of a subantarctic island available. It gives the reader a real sense of what the environment and biology of one of the most isolated islands in the world is like. I strongly recommend this book to all researchers of cold climate environments. John R. Spence, Arctic & Alpine Research "Compared to what is known about most small, oceanic islands, this is an admirably complete treatment. The writing is clear and well organized, and the book is illustrated with good photographs and figures. In some ways, it sets a standard for books on islands." John C. Briggs, Quarterly Review of Biology