SUMMARY A Window on Eternity 108

REVIEW ´ eBook, ePUB or Kindle PDF Õ Edward O. Wilson

A Window on EternityThe remarkable story of how one of the most biologically diverse habitats in the world was destroyed restored and continues to evolve with stunning full color photographs by two of the world’s best wildlife photographers A Window on Eternity is a stunning book of splendid prose and gorgeous photography about one of the biologically richest places in Africa and perhaps in the world Gorongosa National Park in Mozambiue was nearly destroyed in a brutal civil war then was reborn and is now evolving back to its original state Edward O Wilson’s personal luminous description of the wonders of Gorongosa is beautifully complemented by Piotr Naskrecki’s extraordinary photographs of the pa. This is a stunningly beautiful book about the Gorongosa National Park located in Mozambiue It is a short book published just last year The color photographs of landscapes flora and fauna are wonderful Edward O Wilson is a biologist a two time Pulitzer Prize winner and a great author His areas of expertise include biodiversity and sociobiology and he is a world class expert in entomology study of insects especially the social insects like ants bees and termitesGorongosa National Park is a troubled region It was established in the mid 60's but decades of civil war devastated the wildlife there Slowly with the help of philanthropists the park was re established and stabilized Wildlife has been coming back despite poachers who are killing off large animals The park is making inroads by giving conservationist jobs to ex poachers But some of the older elephants remember the days when they were hunted down and are easily spooked by humansThe book comes with a DVD; the video is titled The Guide a fine documentary that centers on the lifelong ambition of a Mozambiuan teenager to be a tourist guide at the park He meets and works with Wilson when he visits Wilson shows his exceptional knowledge of natural history as he rapidly identifies the small critters that kids bring to him during a bio blitzThe book is not a comprehensive survey; rather most chapters are brief descriptions of some type of animal Naturally Wilson's background leads him to emphasize the social insects Wilson writes elouently about the need for biodiversity and of maintaining the complex ecology in a uniue nature preserve I highly recommend this book

Edward O. Wilson Õ 8 SUMMARY

At survived the slaughter of the park’s large animals and He pleads for Gorongosa and other wild places to be allowed to exist and evolve in its time­less way uninterrupted into the futureAs he examines the near destruction and rebirth of Gorongosa Wilson analyzes the balance of nature which he observes teeters on a razor’s edge Loss of even a single species can have serious ramifications throughout an ecosystem and yet we are carelessly destroying complex biodiverse ecosystems with unknown conseuences The wildlands in which these ecosystems flourish gave birth to humanity and it is this natural world still evolving that may outlast us and become our leg­acy our window on eterni. O is a marvelous writer that loves life learning and makes discovery possible for people at every level of awareness He never disappoints me

REVIEW A Window on Eternity

SUMMARY A Window on Eternity 108 ´ The remarkable story of how one of the most biologically diverse habitats in the world was destroyed restored and continues to evolve—with stunning full color photographs by two of the world’s best wildlife photographers A Window on Eternity is a stunning book of splendid prose and gorgeous photography about one of the Rk’s exuisite natural beauty A bonus DVD of Academy Award–winning director Jessica Yu’s documentary The Guide is also included with the bookWilson takes readers to the summit of Mount Gorongosa sacred to the local people and the park’s vital watershed From the forests of the mountain he brings us to the deep gorges on the edge of the Rift Valley previously unexplored by biologists to search for new species and assess their ancient origins He describes amazing animal encounters from huge colonies of agricultural termites to spe­cialized raider ants that feed on them to giant spi­ders a battle between an eagle and a black mamba “conversations” with traumatized elephants th. The Little Things That Run the WorldThis small gem of a guide to the fauna of Mozambiue is not only a well written chronicle of biodiversity in the wild but it is filled with some of the best animal photography available The author is now in his early nineties and was in his early eighties when he made two trips to study the area Though he does mention briefly the expected fever trees acacia and palms; the book is all about animal wildlife And the book came with a video DVD enclosed about the project to restore tha animals to the national park there in Mozambiue Naturally I watched the video first and then read the book in one setting It's a good read But the fact is that the only true man eaters left are tigers in swamps of the Sundarbans;  the Nile and saltwater crocodiles;  and the species of big sharks in order of importance the great white tiger and bull sharks  These are rare;  except for the crocodiles it takes a special season even to get a glimpse of oneCape buffalo hippopotamuses lions warthogs crocodiles baboons chimpanzees bonobos gorillas Vervet Monkeys African Bush Elephants and African Forest Elephants bushpigs warthogs nyalas impalas sable antelopes waterbucks bushbucks blue wildebeests oribi lions Serval Cats African Civets Large spotted Genets mongooses bush babies Olive Babboons Nile Crocodiles and the list of large mammels discussed goes on and on But the author spends as much time on the birds insects ants spiders termites beetles crickets grasshoppers katydids butterflies and a variety of snakes; as he does on the megafauna He shares legends of the natives anecdotes of how to trick a dragonfly and an unusual belief in the eternity of our genes traced through our 'phylogenetic kin' in the animal kingdom Crocodiles and hippopotamuses congregate close together in the waterways of Gorongosa  The adults of both species are formidable giants each capable of mortal damage to the other  A large crocodile can take down a lion if one can be approached while it drinks at the water's edge  A big hippo can kill almost anything with huge tusks driven by sledgehammer swings of its immense head  Fortunately for all such fights seldom occur The author mentions the War for independence from Portugal and the Civil Wars that followed along with the brutal decimation of the country its land people and mostly its animals What is not mentioned throughout the book does stand out in my mind despite the focus on the tiny creatures in the grass and the megafauna In this century Mozambiue struggles with many human problems of corruption slavery and sex trafficking That is never mentioned But you have to keep in mind the scope of the study was time limited to two short trips and filled with biological surveys The author may have been unaware of the other problems At any rate the book is about the wildlife Yet the author does add humans as a footnote to his list of native mammels once or twiceThe complete removal of the forest which if unabated might easily have occurred within 10 years would have been catastrophic for the entire park The mountain's ability to capture hold and gradually release monsoon rainwater would be gone The water would then run off the mountain uickly and the moisture supplied to the rest of the park rendered seasonal instead of continuous year round He ends with a discussion of the dependence of mankind even in the so called 'Age of Man' on nature He discusses the sustainability of large human footprints and the preservation of 'wildland corridors' connecting the Earth's national parks This is certainly a book that would not only intrigue adults but the many young children who love asking uestions that their parents can not answer Any animal lover will be fascinated by the w