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The Wolf: The Ecology and Behavior of an…
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The Wolf: The Ecology and Behavior of an Endangered Species, (udgave 1970)

af L. David Mech (Forfatter)

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1802152,553 (4.38)2
"Since the dawn of history, no other living thing (save, possibly, the snake) has been as reviled by humankind as the wolf. Still, wolves and people have been drawn to each other since the beginning. Canis lupus bounds through our folklore, howls in our dreams, and--occasionally--competes with us on the hunt. As one zoologist imagines it: "Through the cold of winter the wolf made music in the mysterious darkness and sometimes, in curiosity, sat just beyond the dwindling circle of firelight and watched." The curiosity was mutual; this is the feared animal, ironically, that gave rise to man's best friend. Yet only recently has science begun to understand these complex social mammals. Enter biologist L. David Mech. Years of research during the 1960s in Michigan's Isle Royale National Park provided Mech with a level of firsthand knowledge shared by few in the field. In 1970 he compiled his findings (updated in 1980) into the preeminent document of its kind. Thomas McNamee, author of The Return of the Wolf to Yellowstone, calls the book the "best single source of information on wolf biology," and refers to its author as "the undisputed king of wolf research." When government officials in the early 1990s decided to embark on an ambitious project to reintroduce wolves into their former range of Yellowstone National Park, they called on Mech's expertise. All this is to say that, if you want to learn about wolves, you cannot ignore this seminal work or its author. Chapters cover wolf evolution, range, and physiology; society and pack behavior; reproduction; hunting and predator-prey relationships; and the species' uncertain future. Like any self-respecting scientist, Mech includes all the hard data, but he presents his work in an engaging manner that is accessible to a broader audience, drawing heavily on anecdotes and personal experience."--Amazon.ca (book desc. 1981 ed.).… (mere)
Medlem:Fjorgyn793
Titel:The Wolf: The Ecology and Behavior of an Endangered Species,
Forfattere:L. David Mech (Forfatter)
Info:Doubleday (1970), 384 pages
Samlinger:Dit bibliotek
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The Wolf: The Ecology and Behavior of an Endangered Species af L. David Mech

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Mech is one of the top names for wolf research and for a good reason. This book is readable - meaning it's not full-on textbook style to the point you need a law degree to grasp it - but it's not open and breezy either. It's great for my research as I write about wolves far too much and know more than I should. The pictures are OK but small. It's another "staying" book in my library. ( )
  AshleighDJCutler | May 12, 2020 |
"Wolf: The Ecology and Behavior of an Endangered Species" is a classic wolf biology book from 1971, which systematically goes through key aspects of wild wolves and their environments: such as their ecological niche, pack structure and population dynamics, physical and mental characteristics, hunting, seasonal movement patterns, key species of prey, and their relations with prey and other stake holders... including humans (and much more).

Some unusual circumstances surround this book: The author says he has urged his publishers to stop republishing it, because some of the research in it is outmoded. He is particular unhappy about the book's contribution to cementing "the myth about the alpha wolf" and the wolf pack as a dominance hierarchy. The publishers, however, continue to reprint and sell the book.

Keeping in mind that some of the research is outmoded and that the parts about pack structure are inaccurate, I still learned a lot about predator-prey interactions and ecology from it, so although I really wanted to give it a low rating for principal reasons, I just couldn't make myself give it less than 4 stars.

David Mech's newer and more up to date books about wolves can be found on this website here.

(A slightly more elaborate and perhaps later updated version of this review can be found on my blog, here: Wolf: The Ecology and Behavior of an Endangered Species. A Book Review) ( )
  Saltvand | Apr 8, 2014 |
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Of all the native biological constituents of a northern wilderness scene, I should say that the wolves present the greatest test of human wisdom and good intentions.
--Paul L. Errington, 1967, Of Predation and Life
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The closest I have ever been to a free-ranging wild wolf is fifteen feet.
Preface 1980: One of the most important features of science as a method of describing the world is that it is self-correcting.
Preface 1970: The wolf is a complex, controversial, and colorful creature.
Foreword: Throughout the continents of Eurasia and North America primitive man evolved in association with wolves.
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"Since the dawn of history, no other living thing (save, possibly, the snake) has been as reviled by humankind as the wolf. Still, wolves and people have been drawn to each other since the beginning. Canis lupus bounds through our folklore, howls in our dreams, and--occasionally--competes with us on the hunt. As one zoologist imagines it: "Through the cold of winter the wolf made music in the mysterious darkness and sometimes, in curiosity, sat just beyond the dwindling circle of firelight and watched." The curiosity was mutual; this is the feared animal, ironically, that gave rise to man's best friend. Yet only recently has science begun to understand these complex social mammals. Enter biologist L. David Mech. Years of research during the 1960s in Michigan's Isle Royale National Park provided Mech with a level of firsthand knowledge shared by few in the field. In 1970 he compiled his findings (updated in 1980) into the preeminent document of its kind. Thomas McNamee, author of The Return of the Wolf to Yellowstone, calls the book the "best single source of information on wolf biology," and refers to its author as "the undisputed king of wolf research." When government officials in the early 1990s decided to embark on an ambitious project to reintroduce wolves into their former range of Yellowstone National Park, they called on Mech's expertise. All this is to say that, if you want to learn about wolves, you cannot ignore this seminal work or its author. Chapters cover wolf evolution, range, and physiology; society and pack behavior; reproduction; hunting and predator-prey relationships; and the species' uncertain future. Like any self-respecting scientist, Mech includes all the hard data, but he presents his work in an engaging manner that is accessible to a broader audience, drawing heavily on anecdotes and personal experience."--Amazon.ca (book desc. 1981 ed.).

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