Voyage of the Turtle: In Pursuit of the Earth's Last Dinosaur

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Henry Holt and Company, Apr 1, 2007 - Nature - 400 pages

The story of an ancient sea turtle and what its survival says about our future, from the award-winning writer and naturalist

Though nature is indifferent to the struggles of her creatures, the human effect on them is often premeditated. The distressing decline of sea turtles in Pacific waters and their surprising recovery in the Atlantic illuminate what can go both wrong and right from our interventions, and teach us the lessons that can be applied to restore health to the world's oceans and its creatures. As Voyage of the Turtle, Carl Safina's compelling natural history adventure makes clear, the fate of the astonishing leatherback turtle, whose ancestry can be traced back 125 million years, is in our hands.

Writing with verve and color, Safina describes how he and his colleagues track giant pelagic turtles across the world's oceans and onto remote beaches of every continent. As scientists apply lessons learned in the Atlantic and Caribbean to other endangered seas, Safina follows leatherback migrations, including a thrilling journey from Monterey, California, to nesting grounds on the most remote beaches of Papua, New Guinea. The only surviving species of its genus, family, and suborder, the leatherback is an evolutionary marvel: a "reptile" that behaves like a warm-blooded dinosaur, an ocean animal able to withstand colder water than most fishes and dive deeper than any whale.

In his peerless prose, Safina captures the delicate interaction between these gentle giants and the humans who are finally playing a significant role in their survival.


"Magnificent . . . A joyful, hopeful book. Safina gives us ample reasons to be enthralled by this astonishing ancient animal—and ample reasons to care." -- The Los Angeles Times

 

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - Stbalbach - LibraryThing

Voyage of the Turtle is a nature/travel book about an endangered species. Scientist Carl Safina travels around the world visiting sites and people - interspersed with natural history and painful ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - AbigailAdams26 - LibraryThing

"Magic is the simplicity of rightness" declares Carl Safina in this book devoted to the story of Dermochelys coriacea, the great Leatherback turtle, and nowhere is this more evident than in the book ... Read full review

Contents

Angels of EdenTrinidad
9
Weight of the World
38
Moonlight in the Sunshine StateFlorida
45
Leatherbacks and CannonballsSouth Carolina
73
On the EdgeGeorges Bank
117
Animal Magnetism
148
The View from Turtle Island
187
The Great BeachCosta Rica
213
Flying TurtlesMexico
242
Baja
259
The Other Grand CanyonMonterey Bay
284
Jamursba BelimbingsNew Guinea
314
Chant for the Enchanted
342
A Few Places to See Nesting Sea Turtles
349
Index
369
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About the author (2007)

Carl Safina, author of The View from Lazy Point: A Natural Year in an Unnatural World, Voyage of the Turtle: In Pursuit of the Earth's Last Dinosaur, Eye of the Albatross: Visions of Hope and Survival, Song for the Blue Ocean: Encounters Along the World's Coasts and Beneath the Seas, and founder of the Blue Ocean Institute, was named by the Audubon Society one of the leading conservationists of the twentieth century. He's been profiled by The New York Times, and PBS's Bill Moyers. His books and articles have won him a Pew Fellowship, Guggenheim Award, Lannan Literary Award, John Burroughs Medal, and a MacArthur Prize. He lives in Amagansett, New York.

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