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Continental Divide

Author: Krista Schlyer
Publisher: Texas A&M University Press
ISBN: 1603447571
Size: 38.75 MB
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The topic of the border wall between the United States and Mexico continues to be broadly and hotly debated: on national news media, by local and state governments, and even over the dinner table. By now, broad segments of the population have heard widely varying opinions about the wall's effect on illegal immigration, international politics, and the drug war. But what about the wall's effect on animals? Krista Schlyer vividly shows us that this largely isolated natural area, stretching from the Pacific Ocean to the Gulf of Mexico, is also host to a number of rare ecosystems.

Almost Anywhere

Author: Krista Schlyer
Publisher: Skyhorse Publishing, Inc.
ISBN: 1510700560
Size: 31.36 MB
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What do you do when your world ends? At twenty-eight years old, Krista Schlyer sold almost everything she owned and packed the rest of it in a station wagon bound for the American wild. Her two best friends joined her—one a grumpy, grieving introvert, the other a feisty dog—and together they sought out every national park, historic site, forest, and wilderness they could get to before their money ran out or their minds gave in. The journey began as a desperate escape from urban isolation, heartbreak, and despair, but became an adventure beyond imagining. Chronicling their colorful escapade, Almost Anywhere explores the courage, cowardice, and heroics that live in all of us, as well as the life of nature and the nature of life. This eloquent and accessible memoir is at once an immersion in the pain of losing someone particularly close and especially young and a healing journey of a broken life given over to the whimsy and humor of living on the road.

River Of Redemption

Author: Krista Schlyer
Publisher: Texas A&M University Press
ISBN: 1623496926
Size: 42.39 MB
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Incorporating seven years of photography and research, Krista Schlyer portrays life along the Anacostia River, a Washington, DC, waterway rich in history and biodiversity that has nonetheless lingered for years in obscurity and neglect in our nation’s capital. River of Redemption offers an experience of the river that reveals its eons of natural history, centuries of destruction, and decades of restoration efforts. The story of the Anacostia echoes the story of rivers across America. Inspired by Aldo Leopold’s classic book, A Sand County Almanac, Krista Schlyer evokes a consciousness of time and place, taking readers through the seasons in the watershed as well as through the river’s complex history and ecology. As with rivers nationwide, the ways we’ve changed the Anacostia affect the people and wildlife that inhabit its shores, from the headwaters in Maryland, past its confluence with the Potomac River, and ultimately to the Chesapeake Bay. Centuries of abuse at the hands of people who have altered the landscape and mistreated the waterway have transformed it into a polluted, toxic soup unfit for swimming or fishing. The forgotten river is both a reminder of the worst humanity can do to the natural landscape and a wellspring of memory that offers a roadmap back to health and well-being for watershed residents, human and non-human alike. Blending stunning photography with informative and poignant text, River of Redemption offers the opportunity to reinvent our role in urban ecology and to redeem our relationship with this national river and watersheds nationwide.

Half Earth Our Planet S Fight For Life

Author: Edward O. Wilson
Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company
ISBN: 1631490834
Size: 11.22 MB
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Half-Earth proposes an achievable plan to save our imperiled biosphere: devote half the surface of the Earth to nature. In order to stave off the mass extinction of species, including our own, we must move swiftly to preserve the biodiversity of our planet, says Edward O. Wilson in his most impassioned book to date. Half-Earth argues that the situation facing us is too large to be solved piecemeal and proposes a solution commensurate with the magnitude of the problem: dedicate fully half the surface of the Earth to nature. If we are to undertake such an ambitious endeavor, we first must understand just what the biosphere is, why it's essential to our survival, and the manifold threats now facing it. In doing so, Wilson describes how our species, in only a mere blink of geological time, became the architects and rulers of this epoch and outlines the consequences of this that will affect all of life, both ours and the natural world, far into the future. Half-Earth provides an enormously moving and naturalistic portrait of just what is being lost when we clip "twigs and eventually whole braches of life's family tree." In elegiac prose, Wilson documents the many ongoing extinctions that are imminent, paying tribute to creatures great and small, not the least of them the two Sumatran rhinos whom he encounters in captivity. Uniquely, Half-Earth considers not only the large animals and star species of plants but also the millions of invertebrate animals and microorganisms that, despite being overlooked, form the foundations of Earth's ecosystems. In stinging language, he avers that the biosphere does not belong to us and addresses many fallacious notions such as the idea that ongoing extinctions can be balanced out by the introduction of alien species into new ecosystems or that extinct species might be brought back through cloning. This includes a critique of the "anthropocenists," a fashionable collection of revisionist environmentalists who believe that the human species alone can be saved through engineering and technology. Despite the Earth's parlous condition, Wilson is no doomsayer, resigned to fatalism. Defying prevailing conventional wisdom, he suggests that we still have time to put aside half the Earth and identifies actual spots where Earth's biodiversity can still be reclaimed. Suffused with a profound Darwinian understanding of our planet's fragility, Half-Earth reverberates with an urgency like few other books, but it offers an attainable goal that we can strive for on behalf of all life.

Whooping Crane

Author: Klaus Nigge
Publisher: Texas A&M University Press
ISBN: 160344209X
Size: 46.57 MB
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Approximately 250 wild whooping cranes nest in northern Canada and winter in south Texas, flying 2,500 miles annually between these two distinct havens: the coastal marshes of the Gulf of Mexico and the boreal wilderness on the border of Alberta and the Northwest Territories. Through twists of good fortune, each of these terminal migratory places is protected from human encroachment—by a U.S. national wildlife refuge on the one hand and a Canadian national park on the other. This last remaining natural flock of the species, its numbers small but slowly increasing, has thus become known by the names of its sanctuaries: Aransas–Wood Buffalo. On the flock’s wintering grounds at Aransas National Wildlife Refuge in Texas, photographer Klaus Nigge has captured the daily activity of a single family over several weeks in two separate years, documenting their life in the salt marshes of the central Texas coast and, in one year, the happy arrival from the north of twin adolescents, itself an unusual event. Then, with the backing of National Geographic magazine, he received unprecedented permission from the Canadian government to photograph the cranes’ summer nesting sites in remote areas of Wood Buffalo National Park. To obtain these unique photographs, he sat in a cleverly constructed blind for six days and nights, watching as a chick hatched and the adults cared for their young. There he witnessed both the peace and the perils of the cranes’ summer haven. In three galleries, each containing portfolios of images of these magnificent birds in their natural habitat, Nigge captures the beauty and essential mystery that have led humans the world over to include cranes in their earliest myths and legends. Additionally, Nigge has written vignettes to accompany each of the portfolios. Krista Schlyer provides an introductory text that affords an overview of crane history. She chronicles the monumental efforts by humans to ensure the survival of the species and has added a profile of Nigge, outlining his extraordinary entry into the world of wild whooping cranes in order to acquire these breathtaking photographs.

Alfred Wegener

Author: Mott T. Greene
Publisher: JHU Press
ISBN: 142141712X
Size: 45.80 MB
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"The author of the theory of continental drift - the direct ancestor of the modern theory of plate tectonics and one of the key scientific concepts of the past century - Wegener also made major contributions to geology, geophysics, astronomy, geodesy, atmospheric physics, meteorology, and glaciology. Remarkably, he completed this pathbreaking work while grappling variously with financial difficulty, war, economic depression, scientific isolation, illness, and injury. He ultimately died of overexertion on a journey to probe the Greenland icecap and calculate its rate of drift. Greene places Wegener{u2019}s upbringing and theoretical advances in earth science in the context of his brilliantly eclectic career, bringing Wegener to life by analyzing his published scientific work, delving into all of his surviving letters and journals, and tracing both his passionate commitment to science and his thrilling experiences as a polar explorer, a military officer during World War I, and a world-record{u2013}setting balloonist."--From publisher description.

Wild Equids

Author: Jason I. Ransom
Publisher: JHU Press
ISBN: 1421419106
Size: 58.79 MB
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Wild horses, zebras, asses, and feral equines exhibit intriguing and complex social structures that captivate the human imagination and elicit a wide range of emotions that influence conservation and management efforts. This book, spearheaded by Jason I. Ransom and Petra Kaczensky, brings together the world’s leading experts on equid ecology, management, and conservation to provide a synthesis of what is known about these iconic species and what needs to be done to prevent losing some of them altogether. The most comprehensive conservation book on wild equids in decades, this title will enlighten not only equid researchers, but also mammalogists, conservationists, and equine professionals. Readers will find new insight into the lives of the world’s horses, zebras, and asses, understand the basis of our relationships with these animals, and develop a greater understanding of where equids come from and why they are worth conserving. Included in this book are detailed, state-of-the-science syntheses on â—? Social structure, behavior, and cognition â—? Habitat and diet â—? Ecological niches â—? Population dynamics â—? Roles of humans in horse distribution through time â—? Human dimensions and the meaning of wild â—? Management of free-roaming horses â—? Captive breeding of wild equids â—? Conservation of wild equids â—? Conservation of migrations â—? Reintroductions â—? Genetics and paleogenetics

River Of Contrasts

Author: Margie Crisp
Publisher: Texas A&M University Press
ISBN: 9781603447478
Size: 38.89 MB
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Writer and artist Margie Crisp has traveled the length of Texas’ Colorado River, which rises in Dawson County, south of Lubbock, and flows 860 miles southeast across the state to its mouth on the Gulf of Mexico at Matagorda Bay. Echoing the truth of Heraclitus’s ancient dictum, the river’s character changes dramatically from its dusty headwaters on the High Plains to its meandering presence on the coastal prairie. The Colorado is the longest river with both its source and its mouth in Texas, and its water, from beginning to end, provides for the state’s agricultural, municipal, and recreational needs. As Crisp notes, the Colorado River is perhaps most frequently associated with its middle reaches in the Hill Country, where it has been dammed to create the six reservoirs known as the Highland Lakes. Following Crisp as she explores the river, sometimes with her fisherman husband, readers meet the river’s denizens—animal, plant, and human—and learn something about the natural history, the politics, and those who influence the fate of the river and the water it carries. Those who live intimately with the natural landscape inevitably formulate emotional responses to their surroundings, and the people living on or near the Colorado River are no exception. Crisp’s own loving tribute to the river and its inhabitants is enhanced by the exquisite art she has created for this book. Her photographs and maps round out the useful and beautiful accompaniments to this thoughtful portrait of one of Texas’ most beloved rivers. Book website: www.coloradorivertx.com Book blog: riverofcontrasts.wordpress.com Author website: www.margiecrisp.com Former first lady Laura Bush unveils this year's Texas Book Festival poster designed by artist Margie Crisp, author of River of Contrasts: The Texas Colorado. The poster features cliff swallows flying over the Colorado River. Photo by Grant Miller

Lands Of Lost Borders

Author: Kate Harris
Publisher: HarperCollins
ISBN: 0062839314
Size: 67.79 MB
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"Lands of Lost Borders carried me up into a state of openness and excitement I haven’t felt for years. It’s a modern classic." —Pico Iyer A brilliant, fierce writer makes her debut with this enthralling travelogue and memoir of her journey by bicycle along the Silk Road—an illuminating and thought-provoking fusion of The Places in Between, Lab Girl, and Wild that dares us to challenge the limits we place on ourselves and the natural world. As a teenager, Kate Harris realized that the career she craved—to be an explorer, equal parts swashbuckler and metaphysician—had gone extinct. From what she could tell of the world from small-town Ontario, the likes of Marco Polo and Magellan had mapped the whole earth; there was nothing left to be discovered. Looking beyond this planet, she decided to become a scientist and go to Mars. In between studying at Oxford and MIT, Harris set off by bicycle down the fabled Silk Road with her childhood friend Mel. Pedaling mile upon mile in some of the remotest places on earth, she realized that an explorer, in any day and age, is the kind of person who refuses to live between the lines. Forget charting maps, naming peaks: what she yearned for was the feeling of soaring completely out of bounds. The farther she traveled, the closer she came to a world as wild as she felt within. Lands of Lost Borders is the chronicle of Harris’s odyssey and an exploration of the importance of breaking the boundaries we set ourselves; an examination of the stories borders tell, and the restrictions they place on nature and humanity; and a meditation on the existential need to explore—the essential longing to discover what in the universe we are doing here. Like Rebecca Solnit and Pico Iyer, Kate Harris offers a travel account at once exuberant and reflective, wry and rapturous. Lands of Lost Borders explores the nature of limits and the wildness of the self that can never fully be mapped. Weaving adventure and philosophy with the history of science and exploration, Lands of Lost Borders celebrates our connection as humans to the natural world, and ultimately to each other—a belonging that transcends any fences or stories that may divide us.

A Man For All Markets

Author: Edward O Thorp
Publisher: Oneworld Publications
ISBN: 1786070294
Size: 56.46 MB
Format: PDF
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Mathematics professor. Professional gambler. Tech inventor. Hedge fund heavyweight. Bestselling author. One of a kind. Edward O Thorp worked his way up from nothing to become a professor at MIT. Using one of their early computers for his calculations, he invented card counting, making huge winnings at blackjack, roulette and baccarat in Las Vegas and brushing shoulders with mobsters along the way. Thorp then went on to Wall Street, where he began a hugely successful career in the stock market, attracting the attention of global investors such as Warren Buffett. He used statistical techniques to find and exploit pricing anomalies in the securities markets and built a significant fortune, earning him the nickname 'The Godfather of Quants'. For the first time, Thorp shares his incredible life story, explaining how he made his money and giving advice to the next generation of investors.