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World Ocean Census: A Global Survey of Marine Life Hardcover – September 17, 2009

ISBN-13: 978-1554074341 ISBN-10: 1554074347 Edition: 1st

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Firefly Books; 1 edition (September 17, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1554074347
  • ISBN-13: 978-1554074341
  • Product Dimensions: 11.4 x 9.3 x 0.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 3 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #331,947 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

The 10-year census of marine life, an international effort to log all of the species in the world’s oceans, was launched in 2000. Several thousand scientists from more than 80 nations are attempting to answer three questions: What once lived in the global ocean? What is living there now? What will live there in the future? To answer the historical question, researchers have turned to sources as diverse as old whaling logbooks, fish bones recovered from archaeological digs, menus from restaurants, and old photographs and postcards. To discover what lives in the oceans now, scientists have developed new technologies such as radio transmitters attached to myriad marine species, satellites, deep-water diving suits, and remote-control submersibles, all of which can capture data in an environment that is anathema to humans. The excitement of discovery, particularly the almost constant revelation of species new to science, shines through what could have been dry reportage, and numerous photographs, many of the new species, illuminate the text. --Nancy Bent

Review

World Ocean Census is a gorgeous book that would make a great gift for someone who enjoys the ocean or works in a related field, or a great book to have on your own shelf as a reference. (Jennifer Kennedy about.com 2009-12-01)

The book is at its best when it offers glimpses of the astonishing array of sea creatures revealed by the survey. It includes critical data that will be studied for decades to come....Hundreds of breathtaking, full-color photographs plunge one deep into the ocean to see some of the millions of species - from the smallest microbes to the largest whales - that dwell beneath the waves. (N. S. Arun Kumar, BSc Botany, BEd Life Science, Me AkN Science blogspot.com 2010-04-30)

The World Ocean Census is compilation of a 10-year research effort into examining marine life.... Overall, this is an attractive book and it is modestly priced. Most general readers will find topics of interest. (Ralph Lee Scott American Reference Books Annual 2009-01-00)

The excitement of discovery, particularly the almost constant revelation of species new to science, shines through what could have been dry reportage, and numerous photographs, many of the new species, illuminate the text. (Nancy Bent Booklist 2009-12-15)

This volume is a visual treat with its beautiful photographs of marine life from all parts of the ocean. Recommended. (J. C. Briggs, emeritus, Oregon State University Choice 2010-04-01)

The Census of Marine Life is a global network of scientists in more than 80 nations involved in a ten-year project to assess and explain the diversity of life in the oceans. On first examination, this appears to be a typical oversize book dedicated to beautiful underwater photography; however, in well-written text, [the authors] describe the various aspects of the Census for the educated layperson. Illustrated with examples of creatures found in all parts of the oceans, including many newly discovered and never-before-described species, chapters cover the different project groups, how they are gathering and publishing data, and why this is important. Several one- to four-page inserts explain such concepts as hydrothermal processes and the global ocean current conveyor belt.... This will appeal to readers attracted to nature photography as well as anyone interested in the ocean, science, or global climate change. Also useful for high school or college courses on climate, oceanography, or biology. (Maggie Roux, Marine Biological Laboratory and Wood Library Journal 2009-11-15)

As the Census [of Marine Life] draws to a conclusion, it is an appropriate time to assess its accomplishments. World Ocean Census: A Global Survey of Marine Life is the first attempt to present these accomplishments in a format that is accessible to a broad audience. With its striking photography and high production standards, the book unfolds as a visual celebration of the Census. Marine biodiversity and the excitement of ocean exploration come alive as the reader thumbs through the pages and marvels at images collected from Census projects throughout the world ocean. As a coffee-table book, World Ocean Census succeeds admirably.... The most memorable message of World Ocean Census is that we must explore the ocean and understand its biodiversity before it's too late.... World Ocean Census is a start in the right direction. (Charles H. Greene, Director, Ocean Resources and E Oceanography 2010-03-00)

This lavishly illustrated book comes in three parts: What Lived in the Ocean?, What Lives in the Ocean?, and What Will Live in the Ocean?, and along the way talks of the global ocean conveyor belt, the disappearing ice oceans, and the mystery of new life forms. The creatures range from the microscopic to a great white shark, cruising with its mouth wide open. (Bill Robertson Saskatoon Star Phoenix 2009-12-19)

About the only corner of the planet neglected by [a] world atlas, the ocean teems with hidden stories uncovered in this first-ever census of marine life... The survey reveals some of those hidden denizens of the deep, from the vampire squid to the flamingo tongue snail to the shoulderbar soldierfish, each as exotic-looking as their names. Census scientists have tagged seals, salmon and sooty shearwater shorebirds with transmitters to follow migrations. Arctic and Antarctic expeditions reveal changing populations under the pressure of a warming ocean. And everywhere looms the threat of extinction for overfished seafood stocks. "Above all, the breakthroughs in knowledge gained, and awareness of the magnitude of what remains to be discovered, inspire hope that the greatest era of ocean exploration - and ocean care - will now begin. (Dan Vergano USA Today 2009-12-12)

The book is at its best when it offers glimpses of the astonishing array of sea creatures revealed by the survey... [It] is full of high-quality photographs [that] reveal strange, recently discovered species... Fittingly, World Ocean Census begins and ends with spectacular photos of jellyfish, which are supremely suited to exploiting the niches created by overfishing. How humans respond to the trends revealed by the census will largely determine whether this 'jellification' of the ocean will continue, or if crippled marine populations may have a chance to recover. (Mark Schrope Nature Vol 462/19 2009-11-01)

[starred review] As industrial fishing fleets have mined the seas of life before scientists get a chance to study it, an international consortium of scientists, funded by their governments, began a collaborative effort in 2000 to catalog every living organism living in the global ocean. Scientists voyaged to regions that had never been studied before, such as the Gaskel Ridge in the Arctic, where unique hydrothermal vent communities were found, while others researched the human history of marine resource management to get an idea of pre-industrial ocean life... Glorious photographs, full of amazing forms and colors, capture many creatures readers will find entirely unfamiliar, as well the cutting-edge technology used to uncover them. Science writer Crist, along with scientists Scowcroft and Harding, have produced a highly readable text with stunning photos that should fully engage the public imagination, a fitting and accessible prelude to the full scientific report, due in 2010. (Publishers Weekly 2009-09-00)

The articles are written in an open and accessible style. (A. Hauge Journal of the Norwegian Medical Association 2010-07-01)

The general public, students, and even scientists interested in getting up to speed on the latest will find this book a captivating read. I would like to think that every high school library would have a copy of the book and that advisors would bring it to the attention of students contemplating a career in things oceanic. The works of William Beebe, Rachel Carson, and Jacques Cousteau inflected the careers of past and present marine scientists; this book promises a future in studies of the global ocean that those pioneers could never have envisioned. (Frank M. Truesdale, emeritus, Louisiana State Univ Science Books and Film 2010-04-00)

Since 2000, thousands of scientists have been engaged in the Census of Marine Life, with the goals of determining what lived in the world's oceans in the past, what lives there now, and what will live there in the future. This visually stunning and highly readable book deals with the adventures and experiences of the scientists involved with the Census, and with how they are gathering data using both modern research vessels and sources as diverse as old whaling logbooks, fish bones found in archaeological digs, restaurant menus, and old photographs and postcards. Individual sections focus on topics including the logistics of the census and the cutting-edge technology used to project the uncertain future of the world's oceans. Profusely illustrated (mainly in full color), this volume should appeal to a wide audience. This visually stunning and highly readable book deals with the adventures and experiences of the scientists involved with the Census, and with how they are gathering data using both modern research vessels and sources as diverse as old whaling logbooks, fish bones found in archaeological digs, restaurant menus, and old photographs and postcards. Individual sections focus on topics including the logistics of the census and the cutting-edge technology used to project the uncertain future of the world's oceans. Profusely illustrated (mainly in full color), this volume should appeal to a wide audience. (SciTech Book News 2010-06-00)

For those with a natural curiosity about our ocean planet, this new book by an award-winning author and two experienced marine educators is indeed timely and well-written. Superbly designed, the book evokes the majesty and mystery of life in the oceans through the use of captivating photographs, novel graphics, and easy-to-read text. Thorough and consistently high editorial standards are readily apparent. (ARCTIC 2009-09-00)

I love books that can easily be read by both a layperson and a scientist, and this is one of them. There's enough background information that anyone could pick up this book and enjoy it, but enough technical information to make the book a useful reference for someone who works with marine life. 5/5 stars. (Jennifer Kennedy, Marine Life Guide About.com 2012-01-01)

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The pictures are beautiful.
DB_Vernon_CT
It's also hard to imagine a better book for introducing people to the facination, diversity, and fragility of the ocean world.
Matthew A. Bille
He loves the ocean life and was fascinated with this book.
Maggie Bourque

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Matthew A. Bille on June 17, 2010
Format: Hardcover
World Ocean Census may be sort of a clumsy title for a book, but this volume on the findings of the ongoing Census of Marine Life is just wonderful. Clearly and skillfully written, the text conveys both the science and the wonder of undersea exploration. Sections on everything from ancient fisheries to how new species are named flesh out the basic narrative. The authors are well-chosen experts.
Then we get to the photos. I simply run out of superlatives in trying to describe the photographs in this book. It's not too strong to say the book reminded me, in this age of video and CGI, how evocative still photographs could be. New and weird species, photographed with astonishing clarity, pop out from almost every page. It's hard to imagine how this book could have been better. It's also hard to imagine a better book for introducing people to the facination, diversity, and fragility of the ocean world.
- Matt Bille
Author, Shadows of Existence: Discoveries and Speculations in Zoology (Hancock, 2006)
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By M. Gray on December 26, 2009
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This beautiful book which reflects the ongoing work of the World Ocean Census is a must-have for any family or individual with appreciation for and curiosity about the wonders of our natural world. The photographs are stunning and the writing is accessible and fascinating. I don't think it would be possible to read this book without coming away with a renewed desire to explore the world and to take a more active part in conserving our remarkable natural resources.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Edward A. Gemma on December 11, 2009
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Growing up near the ocean and enjoying everything it has to offer, I found this book an excellent read about the seemingly unlimited expanse and diversity of life in the oceans of the world. It is a fascinating look into all of the regions of earth's oceans, their environments and the vast array of living species that exist.

The book is both entertaining and informative from a layman's viewpoint with hundreds of beautiful photographs that enhance and enliven the authors' narratives on the particular subject matter discussed. I was drawn in by the pictures so much that I wanted to read on and learn more about just what I was looking at in the photograghs.

I really liked the glossary of terms at the end of the book,also, which defined and explained in concise sentences exactly what the word meant in the context of the subject matter.

I highly recommend this book to anyone interested in learning about marine life and about the history ,scope and future of the world's oceans and the limitless variety of marine life they contain.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Swedish Delight on December 18, 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Our great-grandson (of 7 years) wanted a big book on oceans or land for Christmas. This book seem to full-fill that request. When we received it I knew the request was full-filled. So many pictures and information, along with the how to's of making the book.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Loren B. on September 22, 2010
Format: Hardcover
This is a wonderful book -- interesting, beautiful, and well written. If you care about the condition of our planet, and are curious about the incredible creatures that inhabit our oceans, you'll love this book!
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