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A Naturalist and Other Beasts: Tales from a Life in the Field Hardcover – April 1, 2007

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Wildlife Conservation Society vice president Schaller (The Last Panda) presents 19 short pieces culled from the dozens of articles and books he has published during half a century spent observing animals around the world. The selections include studies of the daily lives of such exotic beasts as jaguars in Brazil; tigers in central India; lions, wildebeest and cheetahs in Tanzania's Serengeti Plain; giant pandas in China; snow leopards in Pakistan; and chiru (antelope) in the uplands of the Tibetan Plateau. Entwined with his descriptions of the animals are vivid pictures of his own life in the field—treks to remote places, camps established in tents and huts, hours perched in trees and other uncomfortable posts. Schaller began his career as a field biologist but, as these essays show, broadened his outlook over the years to become an outspoken advocate for wild animals and their habitats, helping to establish many wildlife conservation programs. He states in his introduction that as he looks back over his career, he finds today's conservation discourse lacking in heart, with people speaking of nature as "natural resources." His delightful book, imbued with his own unabashed sense of wonder before nature's beauties, is an antidote to this pragmatic trend. 75 b&w photos not seen by PW. (Apr.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

From Booklist

Schaller, field biologist and vice president of the Wildlife Conservation Society in New York, guides readers through 50 years of fieldwork during the golden age of wildlife studies. He organizes his tales of adventure geographically, writing vividly of his unforgettable experiences in the Americas, Africa, South Asia, China, Mongolia, and the Tibetan plateau. In a time of sound bites, Schaller reminds us of the profound benefits of patient animal observation. No technology can replace a trained field biologist, and Schaller is at the top of his field in studies of barking deer and mice, a heron dubbed Siegfried, and prairie dogs in Tibet, not to mention mountain gorillas, tigers, and the thrilling discovery of new species. In this fond memoir, Schaller presents exciting animal lore that will inspire readers to learn more about these precious creatures. It is good to be reminded of what is beautiful in this world, and of our collective responsibility to ensure its continued existence. Pamela Crossland
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 272 pages
  • Publisher: Sierra Club Books; 1 edition (April 1, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1578051290
  • ISBN-13: 978-1578051298
  • Product Dimensions: 6.2 x 0.9 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,784,356 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

10 of 12 people found the following review helpful By happyhippo on May 17, 2009
Format: Hardcover
A fantastic book. It takes us on a world tour (The Americas, Africa and Asia) to introduce us to the marvelous wildlife that this field biologist extraordinaire has worked on for the past fifty or more years. It collects articles written over the years in one handy volume. Passionately argued and brilliantly written, highly recommended!
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By ROGERIO C. DE PAULA on January 7, 2011
Format: Paperback
This is a real field diary of one of the few naturalists alive who continues to walk among beasts! Dr. George Schaller transport the readers to his journeys and research in all the corners in this planet.
It's breathtaking, entertaining, and overall inspiring not only biologists or nature lovers. This book shows how is possible to life an explendid life exploring and protecting wildlife throughout the world.
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1 of 3 people found the following review helpful By John Schorsch on April 4, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Short stories condensed to dullness from larger longer writings. Not worth the effort. Check primary resources from Schaller's earlier writings. A pot boiler, must be short on cash. Sad, a discount to a great naturalist.
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