e99 Online Shopping Mall

Geometry.Net - the online learning center Help  
Home  - Basic M - Mammoths Paleontology (Books)

  Back | 21-40 of 59 | Next 20
A  B  C  D  E  F  G  H  I  J  K  L  M  N  O  P  Q  R  S  T  U  V  W  X  Y  Z  

click price to see details     click image to enlarge     click link to go to the store

21. Mammoth: The Resurrection of an
22. Mammoths on the Move
23. The Fate of the Mammoth: Fossils,
24. Mammoths
25. Mysterious Mammoths: Book 5 of
26. Osteology for the Archaeologist:
27. Mammoths, Mastodonts, and Elephants:
28. Outside and Inside Woolly Mammoths
29. Hot Springs Mammoth Site: A Decade
30. Vegetation Cover & Environment
31. Woolly Mammoth (Pebble Plus)
32. The mastodons and mammoths of
33. Mastodons and Mammoths: Ice Age
34. Mammoths: Giants of the Ice Age,
35. A letter from Silvanus Miller
36. The history of the origin, evolution
37. The Call of Distant Mammoths:
38. Who Are You Calling A Woolly Mammoth
39. Twilight of the Mammoths:: Ice
40. How to Deep Freeze a Mammoth

21. Mammoth: The Resurrection of an Ice Age Giant
by Richard Stone
Paperback: 242 Pages (2002-09)
list price: US$15.00 -- used & new: US$0.95
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0738207756
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

Product Description
The true story of a daring band of twenty-first-century mammoth hunters and their fascinating search for the long-extinct beast.

In this adventure-filled narrative, science writer Richard Stone follows two groups of explorers--one a Russian-Japanese team, the other a French-led consortium--as they battle bitter cold, high winds, and supply shortages to carry out their quest. Armed with GPS, ground-penetrating radar, and Soviet-era military helicopters, they seek an elusive prize: a mammoth carcass that will help determine how the creature lived, how it died--and how it might be brought back to life.

A riveting tale of high-stakes adventure and scientific hubris, Mammoth is also an intellectual voyage through uncharted moral terrain, as we confront the promise and peril of resurrecting creatures from the deep past.Amazon.com Review
Michael Crichton's Jurassic Park introduced readers to the once improbable notion that, thanks to advances in genetic science, dinosaurs could be brought back from the grave. Richard Stone's Mammoth offers a kindred scenario: the establishment of a "Pleistocene Park," in which long-extinct creatures like the mammoth, saber-toothed tiger, and woolly rhino could be resurrected and given sanctuary.

This is not a science-fiction vision, we learn from science journalist Stone's absorbing journey into recent prehistory. Already, scientists from Russia, Canada, the United States, and other nations are studying the possibility of restoring a stretch of northern Siberia to its Pleistocene condition, thereby creating what they call a "mammoth steppe" populated by bison, Yakutian horses, and elephants--and one day, perhaps, creatures such as the woolly mammoth, genetically "summoned from the world of the dead." The materials are readily available, Stone writes, in the form of DNA-bearing "muscles and ligaments and fat" found in mammoths now buried in arctic permafrost. Whether those remnants can be made to bring back to life what Siberians call the "rat beneath the ice" is another question, but it's one that many scholars are busily exploring.

While looking into what he calls a "watershed in efforts to study lost ecosystems," Stone provides a lively natural history of the mammoth and evaluates conflicting theories on its extinction. His book makes for a memorable journey into unknown scientific territory--and a glimpse at a possible future that is surpassing strange. --Gregory McNamee ... Read more

Customer Reviews (11)

4-0 out of 5 stars Entertaining and Engrossing!
This was a fascinating book - though, I suppose, rather disappointing in the end since the scientists still haven't found the mammoth tissue they need, or have found the real case for the mammoth's extinction. Still, it was a book full of fascinating facts and an absolute pleasure to read. This was published in 2002, so I wonder what progress they have made in this research in the last seven years...

2-0 out of 5 stars Mildly interesting
There is surprisingly little about the project of cloning mammoths. I'm not really sure what it's about; it's disorganized and kind of all over the place. There's some about the mammoths themselves (as living animals), some about the various adventures to find frozen mammoths in Sibera, and some about the science behind the cloning. While mildly interesting, it wasn't especially informative.

Not terrible but not recommended.

4-0 out of 5 stars Mammoth-size information . . . Minute-size conclusions
This book contains valuable references to and quotations fromacross the tundra of perspectives of how/why/when the mammoths died off.Like so many Evolutionists, the author stands firm in the mire of peers who keep finding more and more physical evidence of the immediate death and preservation of mammoths (and their environments).Yet, Stone and his peers remain united in their scoffing at a literal interpretation of the Biblical account of the Flood in the days of Noah.

The reader must wonder why the Biblical, "young Earth," account is not treated as a valid explanation, after the author debunks contrary theory after contrary theory.

For example, Stone only makes passing reference to the many mammoths which have been unearthed in Florida.The reader must realize on her/his own that this fact alone refutes almost all of the variations of Evolutionary postulating that gradual climate changes killed off these magnificant creatures.

The thinking reader will wonder how the theories ever get past the mammoth-size problem of herds of mammoths having been found under what is now land too far north to produce the food supply needed for even one of them for a day, let alone herds of them for life-times.The eons of gradual change required in the theories of Evolution cannot account for the repeatedly-found evidence of healthy, well-nourished, gluttonous, quick-frozen mammoths.Stone discusses this evidence, but stears clear of giving serious credence to that 40-day dumping of rain and ice as claimed in the Bible.

Stone never addresses the cellular evidence in these mammoths which conclusively shows that they were quick-frozen at temperatures far below any temperatures existing on Earth.This fact demands an explanation which includes the injection of temperatures found only in outer space, (or in substances such as liquid nitrogen).

Nor does Stone discuss the problem of lack of evidence of internal decay.Mammoths killed by slow starvation would die and decay on the inside while their outer layers froze, if dropped in current-day arctic regions.Once the blood stops pumping, this process of inner rot happens far quicker than a huge beast would freeze to its core.Yet, mammoth after mammoth has been found in these northern regions frozen entirely.

Most glaringly absent is discussion of a mammoth found in the far north with sub-tropical vegetation found still in its mouth.That discovery should have narrowed the amount of valid theories by enough to make this book a lot shorter.(Hint: they did not find a chewing tobacco can in its back pocket.)

Stone's recounting of the 1887 writings of Sir Henry H. Howorth are more formidable than Stone admits to.Stone admits that Howorth's cataclysm theories have been vindicated more and more during Stone's professional career, yet that bias against a literally accurate Biblical account is treated like laughing-stock material.

My suggestion is that if the mammoth fits, wear it!

As for the presentation of the book, it is not a heavy-read.Stone's writing style is understandable, even to folks like me who simply want to think and learn.

The pictures are a bit of a letdown.I had hoped for more pictures of mammoths and their body parts.You can find more such pictures on ebay than in this book.

Overall, a valuable resource for the thinking descendant of Noah.

4-0 out of 5 stars Mammoths, Mammoths, everywhere...
The Woolly Mammoth, long gone from the world but not yet forgotten, was a major source of food, fuel and material for our early ancestors.Our early culture must have understood them but to us are still, in some way, a mystery.
How did they die, was it overchill or overkill?Did we do them in or did a germ do it?How come they lived through so so much to finally die in what seems a blink of an eye?This book is the tale of trying to find out the answers and, maybe, just maybe, find a way to bring them back to life.Yes, maybe if we could find a frozen body to get undamaged, useful, Mammoth DNA from we could do more than just understand them - we could clone them.
This book has many tales.The Mammoth Hunters trying to find a whole creature, the Scientists who want to understand the myster, the Discovery Channel trying to get a story and the Russians just trying to make a living and a quick buck.
Fun, but the ending was clear before I opened the book.As there is no baby Mammoths running about I know that they failed to clone them.Yet the book does give you a good overview of the history of Mammoth research and our knowledge of them.And some of the ideas, like bringing Canadian bison to Siberia
and African rhinos and elephants to North America are both amazing and risky.

5-0 out of 5 stars Excellent, Quick Read
This book is a very interesting discussion of three topics:

1)Why did the mammoths go extinct?
2)Is it possible (and desirable/ethical) to bring back the mammoths via cloning or interbreeding with modern elephants?
3) How did the demise of the mammoth and similar large mammals affect the vegetation and climate of the areas in which they lived (in this case Siberia).Russian scientists theorize that when the mammoths no longer grazed and churned up the ancient grasslands, the vegetation changed completely, into the tundra-wasteland that it is today.

Overall a very enjoyable short book that does not try to puff up the page count with hundreds of pages of irrelevant material.

TMR ... Read more

22. Mammoths on the Move
by Lisa Wheeler
Hardcover: 32 Pages (2006-04-01)
list price: US$16.00 -- used & new: US$1.96
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 015204700X
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

Product Description

Join a pack of woolly mammoths as they trek south for the winter, braving fierce storms, deadly predators, and raging rivers while making their slow journey across the gorgeous unspoiled lands of this continent until finally they reach their goal.

With the same jouncy and joyous rhythms of her youngest picture book texts, Lisa Wheeler introduces readers to one of the most awesome beasts to ever walk the earth: the massive, hairy--legendary--wonderful woolly mammoth!

This factually based book includes an author's note.
... Read more

Customer Reviews (8)

5-0 out of 5 stars Beautiful Art and Rhyming Verse
This is a story told in rhyming verse which explains the migration of woolly mammoths as they traveled from from the steppes of the arctic tundra to the northern prairies and grasslands below the glacier lines. The pictures are primarily in black and white and are stunningly designed for instant eye appeal to children. This is my daughter's favorite.

4-0 out of 5 stars one of my son's favorite
After getting this book at the library, we feel in love with it and wanted to buy our own copy. The illustrations are beautiful and the text, simple and poetic. A great addition to our collection.

5-0 out of 5 stars Alaziah's review
My favorite animal is the mammoth because they help people. My favorite part was when they were swimming. The book has good pictures.

5-0 out of 5 stars Jasmine's evaluation
I liked this book because it has rhyming words. My favorite part of this book was when (the calves) get in the middle (of the herd of female mammoths).

5-0 out of 5 stars Teona's evaluation
I like this book because mammoths can swim under water. My favorite part of the book was when the mammoths headed back up north again (from their migration down south). Other kids would like this book because it happened 10,000 years ago. ... Read more

23. The Fate of the Mammoth: Fossils, Myth, and History
by Claudine Cohen
Hardcover: 336 Pages (2002-04-02)
list price: US$32.00 -- used & new: US$13.20
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0226112926
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

Product Description

From cave paintings to the latest Siberian finds, woolly mammoths have fascinated people across Europe, Asia, and North America for centuries. Remains of these enormous prehistoric animals were among the first fossils to be recognized as such, and they have played a crucial role in the birth and development of paleontology. In this lively, wide-ranging look at the fate of the mammoth, Claudine Cohen reanimates this large mammal with heavy curved tusks and shaggy brown hair through its history in science, myth, and popular culture.

Cohen uses the mammoth and the theories that naturalists constructed around it to illuminate wider issues in the history of science, showing how changing views about a single object reveal the development of scientific methods, practices, and ideas. How are fossils discovered, reconstructed, displayed, and interpreted? What stories are told about them, by whom, and how do these stories reflect the cultures and societies in which they are told?

To find out, Cohen takes us on a grand tour of the study of mammoth remains, from England, Germany, and France to Russia and America, and from the depths of Africa to the frozen frontiers of Alaska and Siberia, where intact mammoth corpses have been discovered in the permafrost. Along the way, she shows how paleontologists draw on myth and history, as well as on scientific evidence, to explore the deep history of the earth and of life. Cohen takes her history from the sixteenth century right up to the present, when researchers are using molecular biology to retrieve mammoth DNA, calling up dreams of cloning the mammoth and one day seeing herds of woolly mammoths roaming the frozen steppes.

... Read more

Customer Reviews (1)

4-0 out of 5 stars History of Science more than Mammoths
This book was not really what I had in mind, but I ended up enjoying it anyway. I was looking to find out more about mammoths, but the book only touched on the actual natural history of mammoths in a limited way. There were so many other revelations, though: people finding mammoth bones at one time thought they were "sports of nature", spontaneously produced by the generative capacities of the earth and not representing any living creature. Mammoth bones are the origin of many giant myths. In Siberia, mammoth bones would seem to burst up from the ground with the thaw, leading to a belief that they were from a burrowing creature that would die on exposure to light. The book was dense and slow reading, but I've found myself relating things I learned in this book to many people since finishing it. I guess it goes to show you sometimes find good things by accident... ... Read more

24. Mammoths
by Adrian Lister, Paul Bahn
 Hardcover: 168 Pages (1998-08)
list price: US$30.00 -- used & new: US$18.49
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0788155555
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

Product Description
A comprehensive survey of the scientific information available on the gigantic Ice Age elephant whose remains have been found in Siberia and whose likeness appears in the cave paintings of France explores the mammoth's history and reasons for its disappearance. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (3)

5-0 out of 5 stars thorough coverage of mammoths for young and old
This is a wondeful book on all things mammoth. With both a fact-filled and readable text and a wealth of excellent illustrations, it is a great resource for young and old. Though the main star of the book is the famous woolly mammoth, other mammoths are covered, such as the dwarf mammoths of Wrangel Island, the California Channel Islands, and of Malta and Sicily; the Columbian Mammoth; the Steppe Mammoth; and the ancestral mammoth, Mammuthus meridionalis.

All aspects of mammoths are covered, anything you could ever want to know about them (that is known to scientists I should say). Mammoth evolution is covered, with discussions and illustrations showing the relationship between the various types of mammoths as well as mastodons and elephants. The entire Proboscidean family tree is detailed, tracing back the evolution of the group to trunk-less Moerithierum over 40 million years ago. The history of mammoth discoveries in Siberia is discussed with many great illustrations, showing many of the famous finds such as the Beresovka Mammoth and baby mammoth Dima, both well preserved frozen mammoths. The mammoths (Columbian Mammoths) that were trapped in the infamous La Brea tar pits of modern Los Angeles are reviewed, with an illustration of a typical scene at the tar pits and discussion of paleontology there. All aspects of mammoth natural history are delved into; what they ate, what preyed upon them, how they aged, the nature of their hairy covering, what habitats they favored, along with detailed discussions of mammoth anatomy and physiology, even analysis of mammoth molars and how they chewed and electron microscope images of mammoth blood cells. Mammoths and human culture is well covered, with ample illustrations of cave paintings and carvings of mammoths, early man hunting and eating mammoths, mammoth bone tools, even mammoth bone huts! The final section of the book is devoted to mammoth extinction and the various causes, primarily climatic and human hunting. Also included are a useful glossary, an appendix discussing how what is known about mammoths came to light, several maps detailing mammoth finds around the world, and a bibliography.

Great popular science writing and lavishly illustrated, this all one could ever want on mammoths.

5-0 out of 5 stars Wonderful book!Excellent information and great pictures!
I have studied Mammoths for a long time now and this book was the best source of information I have seen in a long time.It is soo good I built a web site dedicated to the book and it's authors. Check it out athttp://www.angelfire.com/tn/mamoths/index.html

5-0 out of 5 stars Excellent, informative, and fun.
This book captivated both me and my 12-year-old. It has a million years of mammoth history. The photos of fossil bones and frozen preserved mammoths are excellent. I had not realized mammoth fossils were so common, and that they existed throughout the U.S. If all you know about are the frozen wooly mammoths of Siberia, then you must read this book to get the whole story. The book clearly covers the different types of mammoths, including the dwarf mammoths that survived until only 4000 years ago! Now I want to know where I can find info on what's been learned since this book was published in 1994. ... Read more

25. Mysterious Mammoths: Book 5 of PaleoJoe's Dinosaur Detective Club
by Wendy Caszatt-Allen
Paperback: 144 Pages (2008-04-01)
list price: US$7.95 -- used & new: US$3.20
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 1934133434
Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

Product Description
In this adventure, PaleoJoe and his Dinosaur Detective Club, Shelly, and Dakota, help PaleoJoe search for rare blue mammoth tusks in Siberia where our heroes meet up with their old nemesis--Buzzsaw! Kids will devour these dinosaur CSI stories while learning cool facts about their favorite dinosaurs and paleontology. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (2)

5-0 out of 5 stars Fun Adventure
Will there be more?? As of now, this is the last book in this delightful dinosaur CSI series featuring the intrepid trio 11-year-old Shelly Brooks, her skate boarding, adventure seeking friend Dakota Jackson, and their mentor the great dinosaur detective, PaleoJoe.Full of humor and suspense, this adventure takes place in the frozen landscape of Siberia. The dinosaur detectives are on the trail of a pair of rare blue mammoth tusks. As in all of these adventures, the atmosphere of place is brought to life in vivid detail.Here we meet the Dolgan, nomadic people of the Taimyr Peninsula and reindeer herders.Intriguing facts and details about fossils and fossil hunting are interwoven with the fast paced action of the tale.This is a laugh out loud book, a great read aloud book, a page turner, and a story that any 9 to 11 year old - boy or girl -- interested in dinosaurs and adventure will love.Read it!

1-0 out of 5 stars bad product or bad service
I bought this last book of the series for my son from Amazon because it is no longer available in the bookshop, and when it arrived in a padded package I was relieved and also found that the corners of the book were not damaged.However I was so shocked, and angry too, to find that the 200 pages book had been folded or bent and the front cover page has a deep crease vertically right through the middle.I re-examined the package and found no signs of having been folded.So my guess is that (from the damage to the book) the man who located the book from the warehouse shelf and then brought it out for delivery was simply too lazy to carry the book and he just folded it and stuffed it down the back pocket of his pants.I rang Amazon and complained and they gave me a 20% refund but I am still feeling angry over this such bad experience because I had to explain to a little boy why the book is damaged, why Daddy bought some cheap damaged book that he had waited and waited for.The answer is there are bad heart people in Amazon who would damage your goods on purpose.That's the plain truth. ... Read more

26. Osteology for the Archaeologist: American Mastadon and the Woolly Mammoth; North American Birds: Skulls and Mandibles; North American Birds: Postcranial ... Harvard University, V. 56, No. 3 and 4.)
by Stanley J. Olsen
 Paperback: 192 Pages (1972)
list price: US$18.00
Isbn: 0873651642
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

Product Description
This comparative analysis aids the fieldworker in identifying fossil proboscidean bones from early man sites. It also describes the skulls, mandibles, and posteranial skeletons of forty families of birds frequently found inarchaeological excavations in the United States. ... Read more

27. Mammoths, Mastodonts, and Elephants: Biology, Behavior and the Fossil Record
by Gary Haynes
Paperback: 428 Pages (1993-05-28)
list price: US$75.00 -- used & new: US$67.50
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0521456916
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

Product Description
The diminishing population of African and Asian elephants can be compared to the extinction of other elephant-like species, such as mammoths and mastodonts, which occurred more than ten thousand years ago.The purpose of this book is to use the ecology and behavior of modern elephants to create models for reconstructing the life and death of extinct mammoths and mastodonts. The source of the models is a long-term and continuing study of elephants in Zimbabwe, Africa.These models are clearly described with respect to the anatomical, behavioral, and ecological similarities between past and present proboscideans.The implications of these similarities on the life and death of mammoths and mastodonts is explored in detail.The importance of this book is primarily its unifying perspective on living and extinct proboscideans:the fossil record is closely examined and compared to the natural history of surviving elephants.Dr. Haynes's studies of the places where African elephants die (so-called elephant burial grounds) are unique. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (1)

5-0 out of 5 stars A comprehensive study of proboscidean kill sites
Gary Haynes has done marvelous research in the study of known-cause elephant death sites and has used this research to present a very logical comparison to pre-historic proboscidean remains.This book is a "mustread" for anyone interested in mammoths and the various extinctiontheories. ... Read more

28. Outside and Inside Woolly Mammoths (Outside and Inside (Walker & Company))
by Sandra Markle
Hardcover: 40 Pages (2007-05-15)
list price: US$18.85 -- used & new: US$6.99
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0802795900
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

Product Description

Imagine discovering a creature that's been extinct for tens of thousands of years. Everything is still thereÂ--skin, hair, blood cells, the food in it's stomach, and even its DNA! The Ice Age that was home to legendary woolly mammoths provided the perfect conditions to preserve their bodies.
Let your imagination soar as Sandra Markle uncovers the secrets of these long-extinct creatures in the latest entry in the award-winning Outside and Inside series. How did these distant relatives of the elephants live, and why did they become extinct? The bodies they left behind give scientists clues about their disappearance and the genetic material to possibly clone woolly mammoths today.
... Read more

29. Hot Springs Mammoth Site: A Decade
by Agenbroad
 Paperback: 457 Pages (1994-06)
list price: US$19.95 -- used & new: US$64.91
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0962475068
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

30. Vegetation Cover & Environment in the Mammoth Epoch in Siberia
by Valentaina V. Ukraintseva
 Paperback: 309 Pages (1993-10)
list price: US$19.95 -- used & new: US$64.32
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0962475033
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

31. Woolly Mammoth (Pebble Plus)
by Helen Frost
Hardcover: 24 Pages (2005-01)
list price: US$19.93 -- used & new: US$8.20
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0736836497
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

32. The mastodons and mammoths of Michigan
by Margaret Anne Skeels
 Unknown Binding: Pages (1962)

Asin: B0007HJGEC
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

33. Mastodons and Mammoths: Ice Age Elephants of New York (New York State Museum Educational Leaflet)
by Judith Drumm
 Paperback: 31 Pages (1963)

Asin: B0007ETJOW
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

34. Mammoths: Giants of the Ice Age, Revised Edition
by Adrian Lister, Paul Bahn
Hardcover: 192 Pages (2007-11-20)
list price: US$40.00 -- used & new: US$28.99
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0520253191
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

Product Description
A dazzling visual record of one of Earth's most extraordinary species, this updated and revised edition of Mammoths: Giants of the Ice Age integrates exciting new research to piece together the story of mammoths, mastodons, and their relatives, icons of the Ice Age. Incorporating recent genetic work, new fossil finds, new extinction theories, and more, Mammoths is a captivating exploration of how these mighty creatures evolved, lived, and mysteriously disappeared. The book features a wealth of color illustrations that depict mammoths in their dramatic Ice Age habitats, scores of photographs of mammoth remains, and images of the art of prehistoric people who saw these animals in the flesh. Full of intriguing facts, boxed features, and clear graphics, Mammoths examines the findings--including intact frozen carcasses from Siberia and fossilized remains from South Dakota, California, England, France, and elsewhere--that have provided clues to the mammoths' geographic range, body structure, way of life, and interactions with early humans. It is an enthralling story of paleontological, archaeological, and geological exploration and of the fascinating investigations of biologists, anthropologists, and art historians worldwide.
Copub: Marshall Editions ... Read more

Customer Reviews (3)

4-0 out of 5 stars THE Mammoth guide
I found Mammoths: Giants of the Ice Age to be a great overview of Mammoth natural history and paleontology. The book has a nice combination of photos and text. It is a visually appealing book with decent text. It could be used as a coffee-table book, or read straight through as a book. It is very comprehensive, including sections on the evolution of Mammoths, lifestyles, and history of excavations.

At times, I wasn't quite sure about the book's intended audience. The text seems a bit too advanced for kids, but too basic for readers familiar with Ice Age evolution. [[ASIN:0520261607 Mammoths: Giants of the Ice Age] seems best for lay readers or diehard Mammoth fans. In fact, I found the evolution and natural history sections great, but the other sections a bit dry. Fortunately, the book works pretty well if you skip around and read only those sections that interest you.

Some reviewers have compared this to Paul Martin's Twilight of the Mammoths:: Ice Age Extinctions and the Rewilding of America (Organisms and Environments). However, Martin's book focuses more on the Ice Age extinction rather than the natural history of Mammoths. If you want a focus on Mammoths, Mammoths: Giants of the Ice Age is your book.

This book is a revised version of an earlier book, and unlike many "revised" versions this book contains thorough revisions. It includes two full pages on Lyuba, the frozen baby Mammoth. I can't speak for every section of the book, but it does refer to recent discoveries.

4-0 out of 5 stars Strangely contradictory...
I have given this book four stars, primarily because it is so well illustrated, and that it DOES contain the main arguments currently extant regarding mammoth extinctions, and is well-written as far as it goes.That said, given that this is a revised (third) edition, I would expect that careful editing to bring in the new material would bring to light some glaring contradictions and sway the discussion one way or another.There is a lot of mention in passing of the semi-mythical 'mammoth steppe,' there is essentially no discussion at all of the unique inter-relationship of the mammoth to that particular environment.In other words, the mammoth largely CREATED and maintained the mammoth steppe, much like the African elephant maintains the savannahs of Africa. The experimental efforts of Dr. Zimov in Siberia over the past few years have made that quite clear.Once you have that fact firmly in mind, if you look at the contraction of the mammoth steppe in the post-glacial period, it is obvious that this is representing not a 'shrinking environment that will ultimately doom the mammoth,' but in fact clearly represents the decimation of the mammoth through hunting or other vectors, with a contracting environment resulting (with unsurprisingly, the last vestige of such environment ending up on Wrangel Island).As mammoths lived in lots of environments besides the 'mammoth steppe,' it is clear that the mammoth was not at all dependent on either the climate, or the food resources of the mammoth steppe, but that the steppe was in fact dependent upon the presence of the mammoth.

Carrying this discussion further, the most obvious vector for extinction is clearly hunting by humans.The book devotes a large portion to documenting extensive evidence of human hunting of mammoths, with over 70 sites across the Russian plain where not just individual houses, but entire communities were essentially built on the bones of mammoths, mammoth bones burned as fuel (and they have to be relatively fresh, or they won't burn), huge caches dug in the permafrost and filled with mammoth meat and bones, sites in the US where mammoths have been slaughtered, butchered and eaten, with stone points left in the vertebrae and between the ribs and charcoal pits scattered around them... Yet for some reason, this does not give 'sufficient' evidence for extensive hunting by humans?

Finally, while the book is very much limited to the various species of mammoth alone, for future editions it might be wise to include an extensive section on the various mastodons of the time as well.This is important for several reasons.First, during all of the Pleistocene (and earlier), the mastodons/gomphotheres formed a distinct proboscidean parallel form to the mammoths, exploiting environments not generally favored by them, and vice versa.While mammoths generally preferred more open environments for grazing (and knocking down trees to obtain it), the mastodons were primarily browzers that preferred forests.Thus, when the climate changes, favoring either expansion of grasslands, or expansion of forests, either the mammoths or the mastodons would benefit, and thus proboscideans of one type or another continue.An examination of the impact of modern African elephants of the forest species gives some good clues as to the impact of large proboscideans on the dense forest, and its plants and animals as well that could be easily transferred to the mastodons of North and South America (much of the jungle of West Africa is so dense that the interior would be essentially impenetrable if not for the existence of extensive 'game trails' created by forest elephants).

Further, the mastodon/gomphotheres lived not only in North America, but extensively in South America as well (where they form a primary item on the menu of early human sites), living in jungles, upland environments, as well as the pampas further South where mammoths never reached (already occupying and exploiting the environments there).In Asia, a similar situation occured with Stegodons and more modern elephants occupying the heavily forested South, while the mammoths stayed further North.Yet in all cases, all but modern elephants were wiped out in a matter of just a few thousand years, even though all forms had been in occupance for more than a million years previously!There IS only one 'enemy' here, and that is US!

If you are looking for a good overview of mammoths, their descent and a good overview of current knowledge in a distinctly non-technical manner, I can recommend this book highly.If you are looking for deeper insights, then I am afraid you will have to either look elsehwere, or wait for an updated edition.Check out 'Twilight of the Mammoths,' by Paul S. Martin for a good examination of environmental factors at the end of the Pleistocene for more information.

5-0 out of 5 stars Mammoths: Giants of the Ice Age
This beautifully produced coffee-table size (mammoth) book is full of pictures, maps, drawings and text detailing the origins, natural history, interaction with humans and eventual extinction of the Mammoth. It's aesthetically on par with something produced by National Geographic or the Smithsonian Institute. The actual content however exceeds that, it is a labor of love written by someone who obviously has a lifetime of experience and knowledge about mammoths. Nor has it been dumbed down for a general or younger audience - the science is clearly explained and accessible. What do we know? How do we know it?

I read it cover to cover in under 4 hours and with all the visual aids (pictures, maps, drawings, graphics) carefully tied into the text, it is a multimedia joy, I only wish more science books could be this effortless. We know more about the extinct Mammoth than some living species because there are so many well preserved frozen in the ground, and the close relation with living elephants tells us a lot about behavior.

This is a third edition (1994, 2000, 2007) and some of the information is extremely recent, for example the best preserved Mammoth ever found was in early 2007, and there is a picture included! ... Read more

35. A letter from Silvanus Miller to De Witt Clinton, L.L.D., on the fossil bones of the mammoth discovered in the state of New-York, with some observations on the adjacent country, etc
by Silvanus Miller
 Unknown Binding: 15 Pages (1815)

Asin: B0008A25M8
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

36. The history of the origin, evolution and dispersal of the late Pleistocene Mammuthus-Coelodonta faunal complex in Eurasia (large mammals)
by Ralf-Dietrich Kahlke
 Unknown Binding: 219 Pages (1999)

Isbn: 0913062049
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

37. The Call of Distant Mammoths: Why The Ice Age Mammals Disappeared
by Peter D. Ward
Paperback: 241 Pages (1998-10-09)
list price: US$16.95 -- used & new: US$5.09
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0387985727
Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

Product Description
If you went back in time to the site of Los Angeles as itlooked 12,000 years agoat the height of the last Ice Agetheanimal population might remind you of Africa. You would seesaber-toothed tigers, giant ground sloths and camels, hippos, lions,and enormous scavenging condors, as well as giant bears andwolves. Most spectacular of all would be the great herds ofproboscideans: giant mastodons and mammoths, extinct relatives of theelephant. Why are these splendid creatures no longer with us? Why arethe great mammals that once walked the earth now largely extinctoutside of Africa?

Of the two suspected culprits, climate change and human hunting, Wardbuilds a compelling case for human hunting. Humans arrived inAustralia about 40,000 years ago, and the marsupial lions and giantkangaroos vanished soon after; they came to New Zealand 2,000 yearsago, and the giant moa was quickly gone; and the American extinctioncoincides with the spread of the first human population there.

Surprisingly, however, this most recent of prehistoric massextinctions is far from the best known or most thoroughly studied. Inorder to understand what happened in the Ice Age, Ward takes us on atour of mass extinctions through earth's history. He presents acompelling account of the great comet crash that killed off thedinosaurs and describes other extinctions that were even worse. In sodoing he introduces us to a profound paradigm shift now taking placein paleontology: rather than arising from the gradual workings ofeveryday forces, all mass extinctions are due to unique, catastrophicevents. They throw a wild card into the game of evolution and startthe contest anew. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (11)

4-0 out of 5 stars An Intrigruing Possibility
Everyone knows that the last ice age killed the mastodons and mammoths.Massive climate changes apparently altered their sources of food, the weather was difficult to adapt to and these mega mammals became extinct as a result of these powerful forces.But what if we are wrong in these assumptions?

Peter D. Ward instructs us to search elsewhere for the true culprit.To learn the truth, Ward leads us through several mass extinctions in Earth's history, the demise of the mightiest of dinosaurs and the unceasing advance of the Clovis people and other groups of early man.On every continent, the great mammals disappeared shortly after the arrival of man.Coincidence?The author does not think so.

On top of this, some species seem to go into "protective mode" if their survival seems unlikely.For example, when modern elephants are threatened, they produce less offspring, not more.They've even been known to shove juveniles away from shrinking waterholes so that the adult elephants may drink, thus helping to ensure the survival of viable males and females capable of continuing the species.Could ancient mega mammals have exhibited similar behavior?If waves of hunters were added to this sad equation, might not mammoths and other large creatures have reached the overkill threshold, the point from which their species could never recover?

If so, how does this bode well for our future and the continuation of hundreds of species into the next century or millenium?Is it already too late?Read on, dear reader, read on and discover the true villain in this modern day mystery.

5-0 out of 5 stars I Bet Al Gore read this book to: Complete Fantasy
Ok, IWill just give my thought on this book because anyone who understands Science and God will know this book is crap!Just like how the Government is trying to scare the world into Global Warming Terror
(REMEMBER Y2K) To profit themsleves. We may have Global warming but anyone who has studied the history of the Ice Ages (humans didn't pollute in the mammoth days)and has also studied the melting ice caps on mars will realize that Global warming is far from being man made. We may have contributed to it, but we didn't cause it. Global warming is a cycle the earth goes through. We have been blessed the last few years with climate stability, but we live in an unstable world that does change. We are the generation that will see that change and the upcoming cycle occur.

Don't listen to eveything Mr,Gore and these unresearched books try to teach you. Listen to God and learn your facts.

If you wanna know what killed the Mammoths-->read up on Noahs Flood and really study it hard. Also read the Book of Job and Enoch--->Then apply some Science knowledge to it and you will have your answer to what killed the Mammoths

1-0 out of 5 stars Fine fairy tale but scientific rubbish
What a disppointment.The author, a geologist, falls flat in this book.He strays into areas of expertise with grand claims and zero proof.He does not refer to his ideas as theories but as fact.Aside from the joy ride around good questions, the book is filled with extreme political correctness...Why are SUV's, Republicans, and present day humans always the ones that are to blame for extinctions that happened thousands of years ago (now you get an idea of what light that this book was written in).Pure rubbish as a science book.Great for "politically correctness" fans.

1-0 out of 5 stars Zero Stars<br>

It remains mysterious that humans are held to be the cause of any kind of phenomenon that is otherwise unexplainable within a uniformitarian framework.The mammoths went extinct precisely where they'd have had no food supply to build their population to such high levels, nor indeed to support so much as a herd.

In other words, they didn't go extinct because of conditions that exist today, but they did go extinct due to natural conditions.And not due to fictional bands of ravenous human hunters.

This book should appeal to the knee-jerk reactionaries who sanctimoniously hand down judgments about the lifestyles of the rest of us.This book is worth less than fossilized mammoth dung.

5-0 out of 5 stars Ward nailed it!
Some truths are self-evident. That human beings are likely responsible for the mass extinctions of the Pleistocene megafauna is one of these truths. That we are still in the process of exterminating the remnants of the Pleistocene megafauna is another of these truths.

Mr. Ward, in addition to being a fine scholar, is also a very talented writer who adds a generous touch of humanity to what could have been a very dry and intellectual read. I highly recommend this book. It's eye-opening, sometimes frightening, but largely on target. All in all, it's the best book on the disappearance of our era's megafauna since Leakey's THE FIFTH EXTINCTION, and the two books will share shelf space in my office. ... Read more

38. Who Are You Calling A Woolly Mammoth (America's Funny But True History)
by Elizabeth Levy
Paperback: 128 Pages (2001-09-01)
list price: US$4.99 -- used & new: US$1.98
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0590129384
Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

Product Description
Some people think that North America¹s history began when Columbus sailed over in 1492. The first volume in the tongue-in-cheek, no-holds-barred history series says that estimate¹s a bit off, by about 250 million years! With tons of facts, lots of laughs, and plenty of funky illustrations, author Liz Levy takes readers on a roller coaster ride through the age of the dinosaurs, the great ice ages, and, finally, to the appearance of the first humans. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (5)

3-0 out of 5 stars Let the buyer beware
This book is part of Scholastic Books' America's Horrible Histories series. This book uses a cockroach to tell the history of North America from 250 million years ago, when it was part of the Pangaea super-continent, down to the last ice age of 10,000 years ago. Along the way, the reader is treated to a number of silly cartoons, not to mention all of the silly jokes and puns.

OK, where do I start? This book is really a comic book history of North America, with the subject treated in a very flippant manner. Some of the subjects addressed are adequately discussed, while others are clearly not. If the humor connects with the young reader, then he or she will no doubt read through the book. But that's a big if.

So, for coverage of the subject I give it 3 stars, for readability I also give it 3 stars. It's not a great book, but it is an OK one. You have got to know your young reader - if the reader is interested in prehistory *and* has an off-beat humor then he or she will no doubt like this book, and it will hopefully spark enough interest for the reader to go on to better books. If the reader does care about prehistory, or does not go in for such sophomoric humor, then the book will be a bust. Let the buyer beware.

1-0 out of 5 stars Ew.
Terry Deary writes the original Horrible Histories.They're interesting, witty, and even educational. Kids and adults alike read them for fun! Read them.

Elizabeth Levy's "American Horrible Histories", however, are dull, unfunny, and while they are "educational", I can't see anyone reading them for fun. It reads like a text book.

5-0 out of 5 stars Horrible Histories
This books are wonderful.They make learning history fun and cool.It combines jokes, historical facts and funny information in a great easy-to-read package.My 4th grader loves the whole series.Both reluctant readers and history lovers will enjoy the breezy way history is told in these books.Ideal for 3rd-5th graders and even middle school students. Great as gifts or for a classroom. Too bad all history books aren't this fun!

3-0 out of 5 stars Who Are You Calling A Woolly Mammoth
I think that my book was funnier than anything else. I mean it's about history and all but it was even funnier. It makes you not want to stop because you want to see what's next. I think that the autor wants it so you learn and have fun at the same time. Some other books were all talking and no fun if you know what I mean. There's a little story teller on every page; he tells jokes about the things you've just read. I liked this book and I hope you do to thanks.

5-0 out of 5 stars Who Are You Calling A Woolly Mammoth?
This book teaches you about Prehistoric times and how creatures survived. The book also has some humor. There is almost a comic on every page, and most of them are funny. It's a way to learn and have fun at the same time. Inconclusion, I write this because it's a great book to learn from and get a few laughs along with it. ... Read more

39. Twilight of the Mammoths:: Ice Age Extinctions and the Rewilding of America (Organisms and Environments)
by Paul S. Martin
Paperback: 270 Pages (2007-05-08)
list price: US$21.95 -- used & new: US$15.90
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0520252438
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

Product Description
As recently as 11,000 years ago--"near time" to geologists--mammoths, mastodons, gomphotheres, ground sloths, giant armadillos, native camels and horses, the dire wolf, and many other large mammals roamed North America. In what has become one of science's greatest riddles, these large animals vanished in North and South America around the time humans arrived at the end of the last great ice age. Part paleontological adventure and part memoir, Twilight of the Mammoths presents in detail internationally renowned paleoecologist Paul Martin's widely discussed and debated "overkill" hypothesis to explain these mysterious megafauna extinctions. Taking us from Rampart Cave in the Grand Canyon, where he finds himself "chest deep in sloth dung," to other important fossil sites in Arizona and Chile, Martin's engaging book, written for a wide audience, uncovers our rich evolutionary legacy and shows why he has come to believe that the earliest Americans literally hunted these animals to death.
As he discusses the discoveries that brought him to this hypothesis, Martin relates many colorful stories and gives a rich overview of the field of paleontology as well as his own fascinating career. He explores the ramifications of the overkill hypothesis for similar extinctions worldwide and examines other explanations for the extinctions, including climate change. Martin's visionary thinking about our missing megafauna offers inspiration and a challenge for today's conservation efforts as he speculates on what we might do to remedy this situation--both in our thinking about what is "natural" and in the natural world itself. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (12)

5-0 out of 5 stars The Past Recaptured - Thought Provoking
Dr. Paul Martin, the foremost proponent of the overkill theorem regarding Pleistocene/Holocene megafaunal extinctions, presents here the basics of the argument, along with anecdotes from his own career, and his suggestions for refilling some of the ecological niches vacated by the extinct megafauna.
Most of the book focusses on Dr. Martin's work in the American Southwest, in particular, his study of pack rat middens in the Grand Canyon and the remarkable Rampart Cave, one of the truly amazing paleontological sites in the United States.There are interesting discussions of the tantalizing clues that point in the direction of overkill as the cause of extinction - clues left both by the living and the dead - mammoth butchering sites; ecological "orphans" (osage orange, Kentucky coffee); pronghorn antelope speed needed to escape long-vanished American cheetahs; analogous disappearances of megafauna worldwide immediately upon human arrival (New Zealand, Madagascar et al).
The final parts of the book discuss how a truly natural American landscape might look, and suggests that a reintroduction of species we would view as exotic - elephants, camels, lions, etc - would in fact be a restart of evolution with guild members only recently absent.

Well worthwhile, as is all of Dr. Martin's work.

4-0 out of 5 stars A dissenting voice
I enjoyed the content of Twilight of Mammoths and see it as a fascinating topic. However I have some issues with it, including:

1. While the content was fascinating (I have admitted little background in the topic), the writing technique was far less inspiring. Enough said on that.

2. The author fails to adequately discuss the lack of kill sites for mammoths and sloths and only mentions it in passing (he actually acknowledges the distinct lack of kill sites, having only found bison and other such kill sites with verifiable Clovis points). Shouldn't this be of primary importance?

3. The author talks at length of problems with the overchill theory (climate change). This is good. However why doesn't he discuss the overill theory (disease)? This seems to me quite feasible. Neglect of the topic undermines his desire for thoroughness.

4. The author fails to address the question (even though he quotes a student who once asked it): If humans catalyzed so many extinctions, what about slow moving bison, bears, etc.? How could humans find and kill American lions, but not brutish ovids?

5. The author fails to address how humans could be so thorough in their killing, extinguishing species from the most distant jungles in Central America. Even with advanced technology, this endevour would be most challenging today.

6. I like the anecdotes, but his thoughts seem scattered.

Please don't mistake my criticism for disapproval. The book is definitely worth the read, and I enjoyed it - I'm just trained to critique (an exercise exacerbated by the level of frustration with a text).

5-0 out of 5 stars The irrefutable argument is here.....
I have read this book several times, as well as a number of other books on the subject and independent research as well, and to me, the author pts together in one volume just about all of the most cogent arguments in favor of human-caused extinction of the Pleistocene megafauna.While there is certainly much more that can be said on the subject (the 'mammoth steppe' being a CREATION of the mammoth, not the other way around, etc), here are the soundest and best proved discussions.For those interested in the 'Pleistocene Park' project, I refer you to Sergei Zimov, and his marvelous work in Siberia (cehck him out on google).

5-0 out of 5 stars Not light reading
Well written and interesting, but not light reading for the average reader without a background in anthropology.Still, you will probably learn a lot, if you skip over the latin.

5-0 out of 5 stars Great for Understanding Ice Age Mega Fauna Extinctions
This book is an excellent, reasoned discourse on the evidence chain and the theories behind why large mammals in North America went extinct all at the same time - about 12,500 years ago.Before I read this book I had heard of the popular theories of why the north american megafauna went extinct, but had not heard which theory was most likely. Martin makes clear that the overkill theory has the greatest logical and evidentiary support.

it's important in science to keep an open mind about causes.Recently, more work has been done on an ash layer in the geologic record that suggests a great fire or possible comet explosion that may have occurred around the time of the megafauna extinctions in north america. I can believe that such an event had a contributing impact.After reading this book though, there is no question in my mind that n. american megafauna would have survived even a great fire or comet blast so long as they were not also subject to human induced causes.

The other great theories for ice age mammal extinction are referred to as 'overill', for disease-related explanations, and 'overchill', for cold climate explanations.Martin skillfully and convincingly refutes these theories for their unsound logic and lack of evidence.

It is clear to me now that the reason for this debate between overkill, overill, and overchill persists only because the evidentiary chain is not clearly in favor enough of any one of the 3.But the preponderance of evidence, and the soundest reasoning, favors overkill by at least a 10-1 compared to overill or overchill.I would expect future archaeological and paleontological discoveries to add to the evidence supporting overkill.

One final note:I am now a huge supporter of the Pleistocene park concept, and am hopeful that humans are able to rescue the remaining African and Asian megafauna from extinction with park reserves in Siberia and the Americas.I can envision now a park in Texas with asian elephants replacing mammoths, African or Asian lions once again bringing the lost American lion back to life, camels returning to their evolutionary American origins, wild horse herds, introduced threatened African or Asian ungulate species to stand in for their recently extinct American cousins, cheetahs returning, and even threatened tigers getting a second life as the replacement for now-extinct scimitar and saber tooth cats.I leave it to a zoologist to figure out how to replace a giant ground sloth, or even a Shasta ground sloth.

Other pleistocene park possibilities exist in other parts of the world.South america could easily see a return of elephants.The remaining ancestor of the short faced bear, which is the South American spectacled bear, is itself threatened and could use a reserve somewhere else in the world.

Enjoy this book! ... Read more

40. How to Deep Freeze a Mammoth
by Björn Kurtén
 Hardcover: 121 Pages (1986-04-15)
list price: US$45.00 -- used & new: US$37.95
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0231059787
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

Product Description
How does bison meat taste after being frozen for 30,000 years? Were Ice Age cave painters trying to create "art" or just record history? How did ancient oil spills occur, before there were oil companies to create them? Those are just some of the questions renowned paleontologist Bjorn Kurten answers in this collection of lighthearted essays on fossils, ancient life, and related topics. Written for the general reader, these lively pieces range from a look at how scientific theories are created to some new views of old myths. Among the topics Kurten examines are the history of the Mediterranean Sea, the origin of birds, the theory of plate tectonics (continental drift), and the discovery of Piltdown Man, the "missing link" fossil forgery that fooled scientists for more than 40 years.And, true to its title, the book offers a humorous "recipe" for freezing a mammoth that is tundra-tested, if not totally foolproof. "You may have to expend a few hundred mammoths before everything works out," the reader is cautioned, "But there are plenty of them." (Although the author hasn't tasted the fruits of his mammoth recipe, he did feast on some ancient bison meat that dated from 30,000 years ago. Kurten described the taste as "agreeable.")Throughout these essays Kurten brings the prehistoric world alive with enthusiasm and humor, emphasizing that paleontology is the study of those that lived long ago instead of those who are long dead. As he says, "Isn't it more fun to see a dinosaur as something that used to live, rather than as the monstrous heap of bones which it happens to be at present?" ... Read more

Customer Reviews (1)

5-0 out of 5 stars Great collection of popular science essays
_How To Deep-Freeze a Mammoth_ by Bjorn Kurten is a collection of fourteen essays of about four to ten pages each. Most of the essays in the book were originally published in a Swedish version, which were then translated by Erik H. Friis, and then rewritten, updated, and expanded for this book by the author (the Swedish version is copyright 1981, while this work is copyright 1986). A number of black and white drawings by Hubert Pepper accompany the book.The book is 117 pages long and was a quick read; I read it in a day.

A rather enjoyable, for the most part easy to read book, the first four essays dealt with the author's opinions about the world of science as a whole, contrasting it with the world of pseudoscience. Along the way Kurten attacked some of the more egregious examples of pseudoscience, such as several Nazi "scientists", the Soviet "geneticist" Trofim Lysenko, Creationism (which he dealt with only very briefly), and the Swedish writer Ivan Troeng, who wrote a book claiming that the moon originated in the Pacific Ocean 11,800 years ago as a result of collision between the Earth and a smaller celestial body. Kurten disliked the fact that pseudoscientists point to individuals who truly revolutionized their fields, like Darwin, Mendel, and Galileo, and when the pseudoscientists offer their revolutionary ideas and are rejected by mainstream science, claim that they are being persecuted just as these individuals were (Kurten asserted that simply so much more is known that a true and utter revolution is just not possible anymore). Additionally, Kurten pointed out that the pseudoscientist sets out to prove something; he or she has a preconceived notion of what really exists, and unlike a real scientist his or her mind is closed to alternative possibilities. By way of contrast Kurten provided an example of a successful revolution, of a theory that was met with a lot of skepticism at first but was later accepted, that of plate tectonics.

The remaining chapters dealt more specifically with issues and ideas in paleontology, with essays on the geological and paleontological history of the Mediterranean Sea (which I thought was a bit too brief), ancient natural oil spills, the science and politics of _Archaeopteryx_, the process whereby mammoths and other Pleistocene mammals were preserved more or less intact, and the first Europeans (I found that chapter a bit technical).

One of my favorite chapters dealt with an unusual 20 million year old fossil, that of a Miocene rhinoceros of the genus _Diceratherium_, discovered in 1935 in Grant County, Washington state. The fossil was found by hikers, who thought at first that they had found a very odd cave with some bone fragments. Upon investigation it was discovered that the cave was a mold of an extinct rhinoceros, one apparently formed when flowing lava engulfed the (apparently bloated) carcass of the animal, a mold not unlike those found at Pompeii. Kurten discussed how the lava was able to preserve this form without igniting the body and what was learned from the fossil (the wrinkles and folds of the skin were even preserved).

Another chapter I enjoyed was one on Piltdown Man, without a doubt the most famous forgery in the history of paleontology (if not science as a whole). Not particularly familiar with this history of this controversy, it was interesting to learn that even when the fossil was first produced it was not immediately accepted. "Dualists" believed that the braincase belong to a man and the lower jaw to that of an ape, while "monists," who believed it, pointed out that no anthropoid ape was known from Pleistocene Europe and that teeth were worn down in the same way as found in humans. Even after the famous second Piltdown "discovery" ("Piltdown II") and before the specimen was dated using fluorine content, there were problems accepting the Piltdown Man as real; originally it was thought in hominids that the brain evolved first, then the teeth and jaws, but instead _Australopithecus_ proved that this was just the opposite, that it had human-like teeth but a brain closer to that of an ape. Piltdown Man just didn't fit in. Kurten in the end debunked every find associated with Piltdown Man, even the idea that the fossils could have been found there in the first place; it was later shown that the chemical properties of the Piltdown gravel were not conducive to fossil formation and preservation.

Another interesting chapter dealt with Neandertals. Kurten speculated that the prominent eyebrow ridges had evolved to give the Neandertals an intimidating glare, a threatening glance to frighten other organisms, a feature not unlike the false eyes developed by some defenseless animals such as several butterfly species.

The chapter on cave art was excellent and was accompanied by a number of illustrations. Kurten mentioned in passing that the larva of a gadfly is one of the animals found represented in a particular cave; a small figurine made from jet of a larvae was discovered. This may have represented one of the animals eaten by man at the time, as these larvae, which are found inside the skin of reindeer, are a delicacy among modern Inuit. Kurten discussed the role cave art played and discussed their possible religious and magical purposes (briefly mentioning that the term cave art may be a misnomer, that likely the late Pleistocene landscape was "studded with pictures" not unlike highway billboards, with art placed on rock walls, tree trunks, and boulders). Kurten favored the notion that it may have been used for instructional purpose for children, noting that the animals were often rendered with very precise detail, so precise that it took zoologists to notice it (for instance animals clearly in heat were depicted), and that it was produced for its own enjoyment (noting the many very erotic depictions of women, something generally passed over in popular surveys, a few of which were produced here and are not for kids).
... Read more

  Back | 21-40 of 59 | Next 20
A  B  C  D  E  F  G  H  I  J  K  L  M  N  O  P  Q  R  S  T  U  V  W  X  Y  Z  

Prices listed on this site are subject to change without notice.
Questions on ordering or shipping? click here for help.

site stats