A Natural History of Amphibians

Overview

This is a book for all readers who want to learn about amphibians, the animal group that includes frogs, toads, salamanders, and caecilians. It draws on many years of classroom teaching, laboratory experience, and field observation by the authors. Robert Stebbins and Nathan Cohen lead readers on a fascinating odyssey as they explore some of nature's most interesting creatures, interspersing their own observations throughout the book. A Natural History of Amphibians can serve as a textbook for students and ...

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Overview

This is a book for all readers who want to learn about amphibians, the animal group that includes frogs, toads, salamanders, and caecilians. It draws on many years of classroom teaching, laboratory experience, and field observation by the authors. Robert Stebbins and Nathan Cohen lead readers on a fascinating odyssey as they explore some of nature's most interesting creatures, interspersing their own observations throughout the book. A Natural History of Amphibians can serve as a textbook for students and independent learners, as an overview of the field for professional scientists and land managers, and as an engaging introduction for general readers.

The class Amphibia contains more than 4,500 known living species. New species are being discovered so rapidly that the number may grow to more than 5,000 during our lifetimes. However, their numbers are being rapidly decimated around the globe, largely due to the encroachment of humans on amphibian habitats and from growing human-caused environmental pollution, discussed at length in the final chapter. The authors focus our attention on the "natural history" of amphibians worldwide and emphasize their interactions with their environments over time: where they live; how they reproduce; how they have been affected by evolutionary processes; what factors will determine their destinies over time. Through the experienced eyes of the authors, who are skilled observers, we come to see and understand the place of amphibians in the natural world around us.

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Editorial Reviews

New Scientist
This book ... seems likely to replace Duellman and Trueb's Biology of Amphibians as the standard text for students and researchers.
— Chris Mattison
The Quarterly Review of Biology
Conveys the authors' enthusiasm for studying the natural history of a fascinating group of animals. The illustrations are superb [and the] line drawings are a delight. . . . A major contribution.
— Kentwood D. Wells
Trends in Ecology & Evolution
This fine book helps us to appreciate amphibians more fully and provides vital scientific information that may help us to protect them. . . . Although amphibians are but one piece of the biodiversity crisis, this book may become a model for those who champion the preservation of threatened species of all kinds.
— Andrew R. Blaustein
International Zoo News
'[P]rofessional zoologists and serious amateurs. . . will find it a really useful, and enjoyable, work of reference.
— Nicholas Gould
Trends in Ecology and Evolution

This fine book helps us to appreciate amphibians more fully and provides vital scientific information that may help us to protect them. . . . Although amphibians are but one piece of the biodiversity crisis, this book may become a model for those who champion the preservation of threatened species of all kinds.
— Andrew R. Blaustein
Trends in Ecology and Evolution - Andrew R. Blaustein
This fine book helps us to appreciate amphibians more fully and provides vital scientific information that may help us to protect them. . . . Although amphibians are but one piece of the biodiversity crisis, this book may become a model for those who champion the preservation of threatened species of all kinds.
The Quarterly Review of Biology - Kentwood D. Wells
Conveys the authors' enthusiasm for studying the natural history of a fascinating group of animals. The illustrations are superb [and the] line drawings are a delight. . . . A major contribution.
International Zoo News" - Nicholas Gould
'[P]rofessional zoologists and serious amateurs. . . will find it a really useful, and enjoyable, work of reference.
New Scientist - Chris Mattison
This book ... seems likely to replace Duellman and Trueb's Biology of Amphibians as the standard text for students and researchers.
From the Publisher

"This fine book helps us to appreciate amphibians more fully and provides vital scientific information that may help us to protect them. . . . Although amphibians are but one piece of the biodiversity crisis, this book may become a model for those who champion the preservation of threatened species of all kinds."--Andrew R. Blaustein, Trends in Ecology and Evolution

"Conveys the authors' enthusiasm for studying the natural history of a fascinating group of animals. The illustrations are superb [and the] line drawings are a delight. . . . A major contribution."--Kentwood D. Wells, The Quarterly Review of Biology

'[P]rofessional zoologists and serious amateurs. . . will find it a really useful, and enjoyable, work of reference."--Nicholas Gould, International Zoo News

"This book ... seems likely to replace Duellman and Trueb's Biology of Amphibians as the standard text for students and researchers."--Chris Mattison, New Scientist

International Zoo News
[P]rofessional zoologists and serious amateurs. . . will find it a really useful, and enjoyable, work of reference.
— Nicholas Gould
Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780691102511
  • Publisher: Princeton University Press
  • Publication date: 1/6/1997
  • Edition description: Reprint
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 332
  • Product dimensions: 6.04 (w) x 9.13 (h) x 0.80 (d)

Table of Contents

Preface
Acknowledgments
1 Introduction 3
2 Skin 10
3 Breathing 17
4 Limbs and Locomotion 26
5 Tail 33
6 Nose and Chemoreception 37
7 Eyes and Vision 42
8 Food Habits 54
9 Ears and Hearing 67
10 Voice 76
11 Temperature Characteristics 89
12 Body Water Regulation 102
13 Protection against Predators 110
14 Home Range and Movements 121
15 Territorial Behavior and Fighting 126
16 Homing and Migration 131
17 Reproduction 140
18 Parental Care 195
19 Contributions of Amphibians to Human Welfare 205
20 Declining Amphibians 210
Literature Cited 253
Index 301
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