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The Dragon Behind The Glass

Author: Emily Voigt
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
ISBN: 1451678967
Size: 33.36 MB
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A FINALIST FOR THE 2017 PEN/E. O. WILSON LITERARY SCIENCE WRITING AWARD LONGLISTED FOR THE ANDREW CARNEGIE MEDAL FOR EXCELLENCE A LIBRARY JOURNAL BEST SCIENCE BOOK OF THE YEAR “[A] curiously edifying book.” —The New York Times Book Review “With the taut suspense of a spy novel, Voigt paints a vivid world of murder, black market deals, and habitat destruction surrounding a fish that's considered, ironically, to be a good-luck charm.” —Discover “[An] immensely satisfying story, full of surprises and suspense....Things get weird fast.” —The Wall Street Journal An intrepid journalist’s quest to find a wild Asian arowana—the world’s most expensive aquarium fish—takes her on a global tour in this “engaging tale of obsession and perseverance…and an enthralling look at the intersection of science, commercialism, and conservationism” (Publishers Weekly, starred review). A young man is murdered for his pet fish. An Asian tycoon buys a single specimen for $150,000. Meanwhile, a pet detective chases smugglers through the streets of New York. With “the taut suspense of a spy novel” (Discover) The Dragon Behind the Glass tells the story of a fish like none other. Treasured as a status symbol believed to bring good luck, the Asian arowana, or “dragon fish,” is a dramatic example of a modern paradox: the mass-produced endangered species. While hundreds of thousands are bred in captivity, the wild fish as become a near-mythical creature. From the South Bronx to Borneo and beyond, journalist Emily Voigt follows the trail of the arowana to learn its fate in nature. “A fresh, lively look at an obsessive desire to own a piece of the wild” (Kirkus Reviews), The Dragon Behind the Glass traces our fascination with aquarium fish back to the era of exploration when naturalists stood on the cutting edge of modern science. In an age when freshwater fish now comprise one of the most rapidly vanishing groups of animals, Voigt unearths a surprising truth behind the arowana’s rise to fame—one that calls into question how we protect the world’s rarest species. “Not since Candace Millard published The River of Doubt has the world of the Amazon, Borneo, Myanmar, and other exotic locations been so colorfully portrayed as it is now in Emily Voigt’s The Dragon Behind the Glass…a must-read” (Library Journal, starred review).

The Dragon Behind The Glass

Author: Emily Voigt
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
ISBN: 1451678940
Size: 35.84 MB
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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A journalist's quest to find a wild Asian arowana--the world's most expensive aquarium fish--takes her on a global tour through the bizarre realm of ornamental fish hobbyists to some of the most remote jungles on the planet.

The Dragon Behind The Glass

Author: Emily Voigt
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
ISBN: 1451678959
Size: 55.26 MB
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A riveting journey into the bizarre world of the Asian arowana or "dragon fish" the world's most expensive aquarium fish--reveals a surprising history with profound implications for the future of wild animals and human beings alike. The Dragon Behind the Glass tells the story of a fish like none other: a powerful predator dating to the age of the dinosaurs. Treasured as a status symbol believed to bring good luck, the Asian arowana is bred on high-security farms in Southeast Asia and sold by the hundreds of thousands each year. In the United States, however, it's protected by the Endangered Species Act and illegal to bring into the country--though it remains the object of a thriving black market. From the South Bronx to Singapore, journalist Emily Voigt follows the trail of the fish, ultimately embarking on a years-long quest to find the arowana in the wild, venturing deep into some of the last remaining tropical wildernesses on earth. In an age when freshwater fish now comprise one of the most rapidly vanishing groups of animals on the planet, Voigt unearths a paradoxical truth behind the dragon fish's rise to fame--one that calls into question how we protect the world's rarest species. An elegant exploration of the human conquest of nature, The Dragon Behind the Glass revels in the sheer wonder of life's diversity and lays bare our deepest desire--to hold onto what is wild.

Stolen World

Author: Jennie Erin Smith
Publisher: Crown
ISBN: 0307720268
Size: 36.57 MB
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Tortoises disappear from a Madagascar reserve and reappear in the Bronx Zoo. A dead iguana floats in a jar, awaiting its unveiling in a Florida court. A viper causes mayhem from Ethiopia to Virginia. In Stolen World, Jennie Erin Smith takes the reader on an unforgettable journey, a dark adventure over five decades and six continents. In 1965, Hank Molt, a young cheese salesman from Philadelphia, reinvented himself as a “specialist dealer in rare fauna,” traveling the world to collect exquisite reptiles for zoos and museums. By the end of the decade that followed, new endangered species laws had turned Molt into a convicted smuggler, and an unrepentant one, who went on to provide many of the same rare reptiles to many of the same institutions, covertly. But Molt soon found a rival in Tommy Crutchfield, a Florida carpet salesman with every intention of usurping Molt as the most accomplished reptile smuggler in the country. Like Molt, Crutchfield had modeled himself after an earlier generation of natural-history collectors celebrated for their service to science, an ideal that, for Molt and Crutchfield, eclipsed the realities of the new wildlife-protection laws. Zoo curators, caught between a desire for rare animals and the conservation-minded focus of their institutions, became the smugglers’ antagonists in court but also their best customers, sometimes simultaneously. Crutchfield forged ties with a criminally inclined Malaysian wildlife trader and emerged a millionaire, beloved by some of the finest zoos in the world. Molt, following a string of inventive but disastrous smuggling schemes in New Guinea, was reduced to hanging around Crutchfield’s Florida compound, plotting Crutchfield’s demise. The fallout from their feud would result in a major federal investigation with tentacles in Germany, Madagascar, Holland, and Malaysia. And yet even after prison, personal ruin, and the depredations of age, Molt and Crutchfield never stopped scheming, never stopped longing for the snake or lizard that would earn each his rightful place in a world that had forgotten them—or rather, had never recognized them to begin with.

Field Guide To The Fishes Of The Amazon Orinoco And Guianas

Author: Peter van der Sleen
Publisher: Princeton University Press
ISBN: 1400888808
Size: 61.15 MB
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The Amazon and Orinoco basins in northern South America are home to the highest concentration of freshwater fish species on earth, with more than 3,000 species allotted to 564 genera. Amazonian fishes include piranhas, electric eels, freshwater stingrays, a myriad of beautiful small-bodied tetras and catfishes, and the largest scaled freshwater fish in the world, the pirarucu. Field Guide to the Fishes of the Amazon, Orinoco, and Guianas provides descriptions and identification keys for all the known genera of fishes that inhabit Greater Amazonia, a vast and still mostly remote region of tropical rainforests, seasonally flooded savannas, and meandering lowland rivers. The guide’s contributors include more than fifty expert scientists. They summarize the current state of knowledge on the taxonomy, species richness, and ecology of these fish groups, and provide references to relevant literature for species-level identifications. This richly illustrated guide contains 700 detailed drawings, 190 color photos, and 500 distribution maps, which cover all genera. An extensive and illustrated glossary helps readers with the identification keys. The first complete overview of the fish diversity in the Amazon, Orinoco, and Guianas, this comprehensive guide is essential for anyone interested in the freshwater life inhabiting this part of the world. First complete overview of the fish diversity in the Amazon and Orinoco basins Contributors include more than fifty experts Identification keys and distribution maps for all genera 190 stunning color photos 700 detailed line drawings Extensive and illustrated glossary

A Sea Of Glass

Author: Drew Harvell
Publisher: Univ of California Press
ISBN: 0520961110
Size: 50.33 MB
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Winner of the 2016 National Outdoor Book Award, Environment Category It started with a glass octopus. Dusty, broken, and all but forgotten, it caught Drew Harvell’s eye. Fashioned in intricate detail by the father-son glassmaking team of Leopold and Rudolf Blaschka, the octopus belonged to a menagerie of unusual marine creatures that had been packed away for decades in a storage unit. More than 150 years earlier, the Blaschkas had been captivated by marine invertebrates and spun their likenesses into glass, documenting the life of oceans untouched by climate change and human impacts. Inspired by the Blaschkas’ uncanny replicas, Harvell set out in search of their living counterparts. In A Sea of Glass, she recounts this journey of a lifetime, taking readers along as she dives beneath the ocean's surface to a rarely seen world, revealing the surprising and unusual biology of some of the most ancient animals on the tree of life. On the way, we glimpse a century of change in our ocean ecosystems and learn which of the living matches for the Blaschkas’ creations are, indeed, as fragile as glass. Drew Harvell and the Blaschka menagerie are the subjects of the documentary Fragile Legacy, which won the Best Short Film award at the 2015 Blue Ocean Film Festival & Conservation Summit. Learn more about the film and check out the trailer here.

Brother Number One

Author: David P Chandler
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 0429981619
Size: 73.87 MB
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In the tragic recent history of Cambodia?a past scarred by a long occupation by Vietnamese forces and by the preceding three-year reign of terror by the brutal Khmer Rouge?no figure looms larger or more ominously than that of Pol Pot. As secretary of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of Kampuchea (CPK) since 1962 and as prime minister of Democratic Kampuchea (DK), he has been widely blamed for trying to destroy Cambodian society. By implementing policies whose effects were genocidal, he oversaw the deaths of more than one million of his nation's people.The political career of Saloth Sar, better known by his nom de guerre Pol Pot, forms a critical but largely inaccessible portion of twentieth-century Cambodian history. What we know about his life is sketchy: a comfortable childhood, three years of study in France, and a short career as a schoolteacher preceded several years?spent mostly in hiding?as a guerrilla and the commander of the victorious army in Cambodia's civil war. His career reached a climax when he and his associates, coming to power, attempted to transform their country along lines more radical than any attempted by a modern regime. Driven into hiding in 1979 by invading Vietnamese forces, Pol Pot maintained his leadership of a Khmer Rouge guerrilla army in exile, remaining a power and a threat.In this political biography, David P. Chandler throws light on the shadowy figure of Pol Pot. Basing his study on interviews and on a wide range of sources in English, Cambodian, and French, the author illuminates the ideas and behavior of this enigmatic man and his entourage against the background of post?World War II events, providing a key to understanding this horrific, pivotal period of Cambodian history. In this revised edition, Chandler provides new information on the state of Cambodia and the Khmer Rouge following the death of Pol Pot in 1997.

Under A Mackerel Sky

Author: Rick Stein
Publisher: Random House
ISBN: 1448147247
Size: 45.40 MB
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‘All men should strive to learn before they die what they are running from, and to, and why’ Rick Stein's childhood in 1950s rural Oxfordshire and North Cornwall was idyllic. His parents were charming and gregarious, their five children much-loved and given freedom typical of the time. As he grew older, the holidays were filled with loud and lively parties in his parents' Cornish barn. But ever-present was the unpredicatible mood of his bipolar father, with Rick frequently the focus of his anger and sadness. When Rick was 18 his father killed himself. Emotionally adrift, Rick left for Australia, carrying a suitcase stamped with his father's initials. Manual labour in the outback followed by adventures in America and Mexico toughened up the naive public schoolboy, but at heart he was still lost and unsure what to do with his life. Eventually, Cornwall called him home. From the entrepreneurial days of his mobile disco, the Purple Tiger, to his first, unlikely unlikely nightclub where much of the time was spent breaking up drink-fuelled fights, Rick charts his personal journey in a way that is both wry and perceptive; engaging and witty. Shortlisted for the Specsavers National Book Awards 2013

The Feather Thief

Author: Kirk Wallace Johnson
Publisher: Penguin
ISBN: 1101981628
Size: 38.52 MB
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“Fascinating from the first page to the last—you won’t be able to put it down.” —Southern Living A rollicking true-crime adventure and a thought-provoking exploration of the human drive to possess natural beauty for readers of The Stranger in the Woods, The Lost City of Z, and The Orchid Thief. On a cool June evening in 2009, after performing a concert at London's Royal Academy of Music, twenty-year-old American flautist Edwin Rist boarded a train for a suburban outpost of the British Museum of Natural History. Home to one of the largest ornithological collections in the world, the Tring museum was full of rare bird specimens whose gorgeous feathers were worth staggering amounts of money to the men who shared Edwin's obsession: the Victorian art of salmon fly-tying. Once inside the museum, the champion fly-tier grabbed hundreds of bird skins—some collected 150 years earlier by a contemporary of Darwin's, Alfred Russel Wallace, who'd risked everything to gather them—and escaped into the darkness. Two years later, Kirk Wallace Johnson was waist high in a river in northern New Mexico when his fly-fishing guide told him about the heist. He was soon consumed by the strange case of the feather thief. What would possess a person to steal dead birds? Had Edwin paid the price for his crime? What became of the missing skins? In his search for answers, Johnson was catapulted into a years-long, worldwide investigation. The gripping story of a bizarre and shocking crime, and one man's relentless pursuit of justice, The Feather Thief is also a fascinating exploration of obsession, and man's destructive instinct to harvest the beauty of nature.

The Unconquered

Author: Scott Wallace
Publisher: Broadway Books
ISBN: 0307462978
Size: 32.93 MB
Format: PDF, Kindle
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Even today there remain tribes in the far reaches of the Amazon rainforest that have avoided contact with modern civilization. Deliberately hiding from the outside world, they are the unconquered, the last survivors of an ancient culture that predates the arrival of Columbus. Journalist Scott Wallace chronicles an expedition into the Amazon's uncharted depths, discovering the rainforest's secrets while moving ever closer to a possible encounter with one such tribe of seldom-glimpsed warriors known to repulse all intruders with showers of deadly arrows. On assignment for National Geographic, Wallace joins Brazilian explorer Sydney Possuelo at the head of a 34-man team that ventures deep into the unknown in search of the tribe. Possuelo's mission is to protect the Arrow People, but the information he needs in order to do so can only be gleaned by entering a world of permanent twilight beneath the forest canopy.--From publisher description.