Evolution and biogeography of Australasian vertebrates.

Evolution and biogeography of Australasian vertebrates. J. R. Merrick.
Evolution and biogeography of Australasian vertebrates.

Cromer: Auscipub, 2006. Quarto, colour plates, laminated boards.

Was $230. A comprehensive overview of vertebrate diversity within Australasia, together with discussion of the factors that influenced the evolution and distributions of the faunas we see today. By considering the major forces shaping extant vertebrate assemblages, using new techniques and strategies, we can start to formulate ideas about how to best conserve and manage these dynamic vertebrate groups as well as the ecosystem complexes on which they depend.

There are 38 chapters are divided into seven major sections. The first group of chapters covers the general topics of classification, systematics and environmental histories of parts of Australasia. Then follow five sections, from primitive jawless fishes to specialized marine mammals and humans. The final section focuses on the future, describing some of the latest techniques and systems used for assessing biodiversity and assisting in conservation management.

Each chapter is fully sourced and illustrated with text illustrations. Attempts have been made to maintain a clear, informal style for readers without specialized knowledge and a humorous or irreverent essence when appropriate. There are 136 colour plates and a general combined Index.

Over 50 leading researchers have contributed. This second edition follows in the tradition of Vertebrate Zoogeography & Evolution in Australasia (edited by Archer and Clayton) published in 1984. This new title is a natural development providing a balanced updated coverage of the field. It is hoped that this book will increase awareness of the unique Australasian vertebrate faunas, emphasize the importance of Australasian environments and provide background for decisions that limit biodiversity loss.

Also available in paperback [stock id 24988].

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