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Despite the dedicated efforts of many individuals and organizations, the great apes – our closest living relatives – are on the very edge of extinction. This sweeping atlas provides a comprehensive overview of what is currently known about all six species of great apes – chimpanzee, bonobo, Sumatran orangutan, Bornean orangutan, eastern gorilla, and western lowland gorilla. Created in association with The Great Apes Survival Project (GRASP), World Atlas of Great Apes and their Conservation gives a thorough background on ape behavior and ecology for each species, including detailed habitat requirements, the apes' ecological role, and the possible consequences of their decline. World Atlas of Great Apes also offers a full description of the threats, current conservation efforts, and additional protection needed for each species across its entire range. Many full-color maps and illustrations make the abundance of information accessible to a broad readership, from specialists and policymakers to general readers concerned about the survival of these charismatic primates.
World Atlas of Great Apes and their Conservation represents the work of a dynamic alliance of many of the world's leading great ape research and conservation organizations. Bringing together United Nations agencies, governments, foundations, and private-sector interests, the project aims to raise the international profile of great ape conservation and to build the political will for further action. Readers learn about work being done by specific organizations in support of great ape conservation, and where conservation is most needed and most likely to be effective.
Julian Caldecott is an ecologist and primatologist by training, doing his doctoral research on macaques in Malaysian rain forests. He has worked on wildlife management and biodiversity conservation throughout the global tropics, including projects to conserve Bornean and Sumatran orangutans, western and Nigerian chimpanzees, and Cross River gorillas.
Lera Miles is a biologist with the UNEP World Conservation Monitoring Centre who analyzes threats to biodiversity ranging from global to local scales. Her specialities include species mapping and modeling, vulnerability assessment, and priority-setting.
"An exhaustive look at the six species of primates and their current condition [...] The book is well-illustrated with photographs, maps, and charts."
– Milbry C. Polk, Explorers Journal
"Well-organized and comprehensively researched [...] While its intent is to raise awareness and promote conservation efforts, it is neither 'preachy' nor one-sided."
– Library Journal
"A haunting and incredibly beautiful overview."
– East Bay Express
"This impressive volume brings together a wealth of information about the world's six great ape species, with a heavy emphasis on conservation [...] This comprehensive atlas of the great apes is an important book at a critical time for these species."
– DRK Wildlife Activist
"For ape enthusiasts, this impressive, authoritative work, combining the latest research into primate ecology and status is a must [...] This beautiful book charts their decline and its causes [...] Its detailed maps and tables summarise a wealth of information about the behaviour, ecology and population statistics of the apes. Yet at the same time, it is a celebration of these remarkable species [...] Read it and be fascinated, and then do something about their plight."
– Robin Dunbar BBC Wildlife Magazine
"Best book on mammals in 2005? Without a doubt, The World Atlas of Great Apes."
– Michael McCarthy, The Independent
"A book that every international policy-maker and environmentalist should have."
– Martin Levin, Toronto Globe & Mail
"Great Apes are self-aware, complex communicators, and skilled exploiters of their environment. Yet the most self-aware, the most complex communicator, the most exploitative of all, is now threatening the others with extinction. This book records what we humans know about our closest living relatives, and lays a basis for how we can preserve them for our posterity and theirs."
– Colin P. Groves, author of Primate Taxonomy
"A well researched, up-to-date, clearly presented compendium of information and analysis relevant to conservation of the great apes. This amount and extent of material has never before been brought together."
– Alexander H. Harcourt, University of California at Davis