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A Fragile Balance: The Extraordinary Story…
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A Fragile Balance: The Extraordinary Story of Australian Marsupials

by Christopher Dickman

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The first marsupial that I encountered in the bush was a Common Ringtail Possum (Pseudocherius peregrinus). Transfixed by the light from my hand torch, the animal sat still on a horizontal branch about level with my head, without obvious signs of fear, and let me approach.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0226146308, Hardcover)

Marsupials are nearly synonymous with Australia. Although one of these enigmatic pouched mammals—the opossum—inhabits the United States and another 80 or so thrive in South America, some 220 species are confined to the Australasian region. In Australia, marsupials are the most diverse and dominant indigenous species, from the wallaby and the wombat to the kangaroo and koala.

The extraordinary story of these fascinating animals, A Fragile Balance provides the most up-to-date information on marsupials without losing sight of the unique set of circumstances that led them to prevalence Down Under. Covering all marsupial species in Australia, the book uses an evolutionary framework to interpret the marsupial’s biological traits. Each species account includes a basic biological description, a range map, and a measure of conservation status. The accounts are bounded by general chapters on biology, natural history, cultural history, and conservation. A Fragile Balance is the first book to emphasize interactions between and among marsupials, as well as between humans and marsupials.

Combining the expertise of renowned biologist Christopher Dickman with the artistic talents of illustrator Rosemary Woodford Ganf, A Fragile Balance will be a much celebrated reference for mammalogists worldwide, as well as for readers interested in Australian natural and cultural history.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:19:21 -0400)

"Australian marsupials. Text covers origins and evolution, recent history, natural history, cultural history, conservation and species accounts; illustrated with watercolour paintings of approx. 140 species." -- Provided by publisher.

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