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100 Heartbeats: The Race to Save Earth's Most Endangered Species Hardcover – October 27, 2009


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Rodale Books; First Edition edition (October 27, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1605298476
  • ISBN-13: 978-1605298474
  • Product Dimensions: 9.3 x 6.4 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.3 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (40 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #941,690 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Biologist, Emmy Award-winning producer and TV host Corwin discusses polar and panda bears, Florida panthers and Bengal tigers, and other creatures in this valuable, far-reaching look at endangered species and global efforts to save them (published in conjunction with an MSNBC documentary). He begins with recollections of a trip to "the ice-locked village of Kaktovik, 300 miles north of the Arctic Circle," where Corwin joins scientists from the U.S. Geological Survey studying polar bears, the first animals listed as endangered "due to climate change and the resulting shrinking of sea ice." Determined but far from didactic, Corwin hops the globe discussing a range of land and sea animals in immediate danger, but also the people who live among them and work for their preservation. He also highlights success stories: the California condor, for example, "teetered precariously at an estimated 22 birds in 1987," but intensive captive-breeding efforts have helped bring the population to more than 300. Proving that smart, concerted conservation can and does work, Corwin manages to dull the hopelessness and build a strong case for continuing efforts now and in the future. 16 pages of color photos.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

From Booklist

Corwin states that the only species capable of saving endangered animals is the one that got them into trouble in the first place—humans. The “100 heartbeats” of the title refers to just how scarce these animals are: each species with 100 or fewer living individuals. Animal Planet star Jeff Corwin looks at the critically endangered and examines what is being done to save them, beginning with a chapter that discusses the broad causes of extinction—global warming and the loss of habitat—and then examines specific threats to endangered species while looking at animals most at risk from these threats. The cats, both big and small, and the giant panda are poster species for habitat loss; Hawaiian honeycreepers and Puerto Rican crested toads suffer from the depredations of introduced alien species; California condors and Chinese alligators contend with pollution of their limited habitat; and illegal hunting and capture for the pet trade doom elephants and many primates. Corwin’s conversational, upbeat style makes readers care about the species in peril. --Nancy Bent

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I feel the book was well written and is very engaging.
Karen in Mommyland
I would recommend this book to anyone that is passionate or wanting to learn more about conservation!
M. Divitcoff
All I can say is that this book has totally changed my opinion of Mr. Corwin.
Geekdomo

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

11 of 13 people found the following review helpful By B. Smawley VINE VOICE on October 20, 2009
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
I was familiar with Jeff Corwin only by occasional glimpses of his show on Animal Planet. And based on that exposure I rather thought of him as an entertainer but ordered *100 Heartbeats* anyway because it is about animals. Was I in for a surprise. This book is a well researched, well reasoned exposition on animal extinction -- animals that have already gone extinct, others that are clearly endangered or threatened and those that have been saved or are in the process of being saved. One would wonder how he managed to keep his objectivity after all he has seen but he did IMO.

The book is divided into sections. Part 1 is about global warming and habitat loss. This part is scary since it is so hard to convince some that global warming is even happening. Isn't our earth and its inhabitants too precious to take a chance? How can it hurt to protect all living things--after all, each one has its own purpose. Part 2 is about introduced species, pollution, and disease. This section covers introduced species such as pigs or cats (or man) which once introduced into a system, can decimate local species. Mr. Corwin had numerous examples in the book. He also discusses the affects of pollution and poaching on wildlife. Part 3 is about education vs. exploitation.

Mr. Corwin's encounter with chimps when he visited their sanctuary was funny. He also described a heartbreaking incident about a baby chimp clinging to his mother. I won't say more for those of you who have yet to read the book. He also holds a baby orangutan in his arms, an experience he humanizes. He allows that humans and primates are similar yet different so if I could ask Mr.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Jesse D. Walker on September 24, 2009
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
Those who are used to Jeff Corwin through his television programs may be in for something of a surprise... this isn't a funny book, and it's not targeted at younger audiences. Corwin comes across as an experienced conservation biologist, and presents a lot of scientific data along with his personal experiences. He's a great writer, and easy to follow, so it's hard to put the book down (a little unusual for a "science" book). I really enjoyed reading it.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Kelsey Austin on December 19, 2011
Format: Paperback
One of the only reasons I chose to read this book is because it had animals in it and it was the shortest out of the books my APES class was assigned to read. From the very beginning it caught my attention. The way Corwin describes his very first experience with the snake in his mother's yard was fascinating! Jeff Corwin allowed me to see ordinary animals as extraordinary. I always had a computer next to me so I could look up the various animals in his book and it really helped me create that visual image and allow me to personally connect during times. This book surpassed my expectations! It has many of Corwin's dangerous and exciting adventures as well as some wake up calls that have to do with the environment! It's a great quick read and I would recommend it to everyone!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Matthew A. Bille on July 9, 2010
Format: Hardcover
I thought of Corwin as a good TV host and knowledgeable zoologist and didn't know he was also a good writer. In this book, he writes movingly of his experiences with some of the world's rarest wildlife. (The title refers to the "100 Heartbeats Club" - the species with less than 100 known survivors.)
Corwin mainly organizes the book, not by animal type, but by the type of threats - pollution, habitat loss, etc. From this structure, he recounts his own experiences and plenty of important reports and statistics. He covers some causes and effects we might not always think of, like what the popularity of plastic wine corks means for the Spanish lynx. One anecdote that stands out to me is his almost spiritual chance encounter with a Florida panther ("It broke through the leaves and, seemingly in slow motion, floated to the ground. It was darker than the panthers I'd seen in photos, more charcoal than sage..." )
There are stories of hope here, too. I knew the Mauritius kestrel had just barely been saved from extinction, but I did not know the International Council for Bird Preservation had acutally given up on this raptor - they sent a scientist to shut down their conservation effort, and he found a way to revive it instead. Corwin's account of a Ugandan army officer who saved a wounded chimp he could have sold is as heartwarming as his tale of the Tasmanian tiger's extinction is grim. (The Tasmanian tiger, or thylacine, is a favorite of mine: I wrote in my book Shadows of Existence (Hancock, 2006) that a few living ones might linger, but Corwin seems sure they do not, although he expresses guarded, perhaps wistful, hope about the idea of resurrecting it someday from its DNA.)
Corwin ends by asking everyone to look around for ways they can contribute to conservation.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful A Kid's Review on November 30, 2009
Format: Hardcover
This is such a topical, relevant and required book for the times we live in. Its seeing the world through the eyes of species which have been driven to the brink of extinction by mankind and understanding their critical place in our lives and on our planet.

Jeff Corwin has been working in the area of conservation for over 15 years now and this book is an incredible result of his very extensive knowledge and understanding of our planet's eco-systems, the reasons why so many species are facing extinction and what we all can and need to be doing to preserve the planet we inherited from our parents and owe to our children. This book is both very informative and inspiring at the same time. Great stories to share with kids as unfortunately these are the tales they need to get inspired and learn from to influence the future of our planet.

I decided to make this book my Christmas gift to my friends this year and have gotten great feedback from the few that I sent it to thus far.
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