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Turtles are a species of reptile at its evolutionary zenith, with an ancient lineage stretching back over 200 million years. Under their unmistakable shells, testament to their survival, they harbor a natural history of epochal proportions. This is the engrossing story Turtles tells.
Turtles: An Extraordinary Natural History 245 Million Years in the Making offers a full account of the evolution, history, diversity, ecology, and behavior of the turtle, and of the problems facing these reptiles worldwide. The book describes the important role turtles play in their ecosystems, as well as the pressures put upon current populations by habitat destruction, over-collection for the pet trade, and increasing consumption for food.
Accompanying Franklins text are photographs and illustrations testifying to the colorful diversity of the 300 species of turtle known to inhabit forest, mountains, prairies, rivers, lakes, and oceans of the world – 70 within the United States alone. Appendices provide contact information for turtle organizations, as well as a listing of all extant chelonians.