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4.3 out of 5 stars
Eating Aliens: One Man's Adventures Hunting Invasive Animal Species
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
on September 11, 2012
Format: Kindle EditionVerified Purchase
Some 50 years after Rachel Carson's Silent Spring set the environmentalist movement in motion, Landers' newest book has the potential to set the "invasivore" movement in full swing.

The term invasivore succinctly describes Landers' vocation and the book itself: hunting and fishing non-native species. Then eating them.

Eating Aliens chronicles Landers' pursuit across the country to hunt or fish black spiny-tailed iguanas, green iguanas, pigs, armadillos, lionfish, European green crabs, Asian carp, nutria, Canadian geese, tilapia, plecos, armored catfish, snakeheads, and Chinese mystery snails -- using modern firearms and tackle, as well as simple pellet rifles and knives.

Equal parts travelogue and essay, he describes each pursuit in detail, leaving you with many memorable anecdotes -- and wanting similar stories of your own.

He goes to great length to describe the effect each invasive species is having on the environment it encroached upon, alongside useful advice for pursuing (and eating) them yourself.

You see him struggle and succeed, as well as completely fail (he never actually catches one of the species mentioned above -- you'll have to read his book to find out which -- and the shocking reason why.)

Yet throughout, it's clear that his biggest roadblock came from needlessly strict (sometimes outdated) state hunting and fishing laws or local ordinances, often combined with ignorant government workers enforcing them or a naive community of citizens.

He argues that the successful elimination of these species, which are undeniably wreaking havoc in our backyards and local ecosystems, can occur through loosening game and fishery laws, greater education about these species, along with the creation of a commercial market for the meat.

Unfortunately, legislation moves at a snail's pace, so it may be some time before these changes occur -- which is why it's my hope (and Landers' too) that a copy of this book lands in the hands of local and national politicians across the country, encouraging an investigation and plan of action similar to those Carson's Silent Spring launched.

But until that occurs, it's up to the folks lucky enough to read Landers' book to make that happen. He hands you an assortment of adventures to choose from, advice for how to cheaply get started (making it very clear that successful hunters and fishers don't need thousands of dollars worth of equipment -- taking away the possible element of intimidation if you've never been out in the woods or on the water), and a mouth that'll be watering at the end.

So do yourself a favor; buy this book and then head outdoors, tracking down invasive species in your area -- and then enjoy the edible fruits of your labor.
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on October 10, 2012
Format: PaperbackVerified Purchase
Jackson Landers details the 18 months he spent traveling around the United States finding invasive species that are causing harm to our local ecosystems. His mission is capturing or killing a specimen- and then finding a good way to cook it and eat it! It may sound strange, but after the first chapter, you'll be craving an Iguana Taco and a cold beer in sunny south Florida. If you are or are interested in becoming a hunter, a fisherman, a locavore, an epicurean, or just plain concerned about the impact these invaders have on our environment, this book is certainly worth the investment.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on September 8, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition
Landers is the No. 1 voice of experience in turning invasive species into nourishing, tasty meals. It doesn't require the skills of a practiced chef or a blue ribbon cuisine. An apartment kitchen has what's needed, and you already have the skill that's required. We all do. We just need to know what to make, where to get it, and how to prepare it. And here it is, This is a great read.
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on April 9, 2014
Format: Kindle EditionVerified Purchase
Overall it was a pretty ok book. I enjoyed reading about his adventures but wish he would've gotten into the nitty gritty of how we can hunt these invasives ourselves. This isn't a guidebook but was still a fun read.
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on February 8, 2014
Format: Kindle EditionVerified Purchase
I liked this book, it was very interesting and read quickly. I liked that that the lead up to the kills were descriptive but not boring. I wish he would have been more specific on the recipes. Anyone who likes the outdoors and is curious about exotic wildlife will enjoy!
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on April 11, 2013
Format: Kindle EditionVerified Purchase
It's a short read that really highlights some of the more problematic species that are spreading throughout the world. It's written very enjoyably and I would recommend it to anyone interested in learning more about invasive species. Especially those that are interested in snacking on them.
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on January 3, 2013
Format: Kindle EditionVerified Purchase
This was an excellent and inspiring primer on eating invasive species. Lots of ideas here evern for Australians.

There were some indulgent moments - we probably heard a little too much about Jackson Landers's journey, and it seems this was at the expense of hearing about hunting more species. I suspect a publisher told him to personalise it. Not necessary.

Still this wasn't enough to detract from a unique book which I thoroughly enjoyed.
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on November 1, 2012
Format: Kindle EditionVerified Purchase
I enjoy Hunting and Fishing stories as much as the next outdoorsman but I would have liked to have seen more information about the cooking aspects of eating invasive species. I did apprecate the detail included on methods of hunting or fishing for the included species and the methods of preparing the meat or fish. With regards to cooking geese, I had hoped the author would have included more information on cooking methods. My experience with geese has not been as successful as his. I would have liked to know whether the geese were cooked to medium, medium rare or well done. This would be the same information for other meats he has included. While it is touched on in some places, it would be helpful to know which species can benefit from less cooking and which species must be cooked completely. The detail used to describe the prepartion, including eviceration (sp?) and butchering appears helpful, although, not having prepared any of these except geese, I wouldn't know for sure until I attempted them. I would argue though, that some of the invasive species located in Texas are in fact themselve endangered and removing them would cause their extinction. A subject that was not covered in his chapter detailing Texas invasive species. In summary, I enjoyed the book.
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on April 21, 2015
Format: PaperbackVerified Purchase
This was a good read. I heard about the book on a podcast and decided to give it a chance. I didn't really want to put it down once I got started. I wish Mr. Landers would have included a few recipes rather than just saying he used salt, pepper, etc. I look forward to a follow-up of this book if he is planning to write one.
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on September 28, 2012
Format: PaperbackVerified Purchase
I read this book cover to cover straight through, and it held my attention the entire team. Jackson Landers does a great job keeping you interested, and no species takes up too much time, so it's easy to just keep reading. As a bonus, here's a great video of him eating a NYC pigeon: [...]
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