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I want more background on the natural features of the area.
Geology of the American Southwest by W. Scott Baldridge
Call Number: Lied Library Book Stacks QE79.5 .B35 2004
Publication Date: 2004-05-13
Two billion years of Earth history are represented in the rocks and landscape of the Southwest USA, creating natural wonders such as the Grand Canyon, Monument Valley, and Death Valley. This region is considered a geologist's 'dream', since its rocks provide a slice through a huge range of Earth history, and provide examples of many of the geologic processes shaping the Earth. For this reason, the region attracts a large number of undergraduate field classes, and amateur geologists. Geology of the American Southwest, first published in 2004, provides a concise and accessible account of the geology of the region, and will prove invaluable to students studying here. It will also appeal to anyone interested in geology and landscape, and is a valuable guide for visitors to the National Parks of the region.
Birds of the Southwest by John H. Rappole
Call Number: Lied Library Book Stacks QL683.S75 R36 2000
Publication Date: 2001-02-01
The American Southwest is famous for its dramatic vistas and the exotic animals and plants that inhabit the region. Along with Gila monsters, scorpions, and mountain goats, majestic birds, bring their own unique beauty to the area. California condors fight their way back from extinction in southern California’s remote Los Padres National Forest, roadrunners reside in the saguaro deserts west of Tucson, elegant trogons haunt Arizona’s Cave Creek Canyon, and drippers bob in cataracts of New Mexico’s Sangre de Cristo Mountains. Birds of the Southwest provides detailed information on identification, habitat preferences, voice, seasonal occurrence, and abundance of more than 450 species of birds found in the southwest deserts, coasts and mountains of Arizona, New Mexico, southern California and southern Nevada. Each species description is accompanied by a may showing the rand and distribution of that species, and color photographs aid in identification. In addition, directions are provided for more than four hundred localities where species can be found. With its complete coverage of avian abundance and distribution in all habitats of the Southwest and its unique listing and description of major birding localities, including photographs of fifty sites, Birds of the Southwest will be an important reference for the beginner and the experienced birder alike.
Native Plants of Southern Nevada by David Rhode
Call Number: Lied Library Book Stacks E78.N4 R46 2002
Publication Date: 2002-03-29
The southern Great Basin/northern Mojave desert region is home to several different Paiute and Shoshone peoples, all of whom speak languages in the Numic language family. These societies shared a way of life based mainly on harvesting wild plants, following an annual cycle of moving and gathering the seasonally abundant resources. Because of this, they were familiar with and used the full range of plant communities, from the warm-desert Mojave to the cold-desert Great Basin, becoming practiced botanists. They learned which plants and plant parts were useful for curing certain ailments, which produced colorful dyes, which would keep spirits away, and "which crops ripened when" in a particular locality. Native Plants of Southern Nevada arranges that plant knowledge in a traditional field-guide fashion: trees, large shrubs and vines, small shrubs and subshrubs, yuccas and agaves, cacti, herbaceous plants, grasses and grasslike plants, and bulbs. It also lists the native names given by the Owens Valley Paiute, Southern Paiute, Timbisha Shoshone, and Western Shoshone peoples, includes plant description and habitat specifics, and discusses the native uses of each plant. It gathers and compiles the wealth of information buried and scattered in ethnographic notes and monographs, and combines that with good color photographs of the plants, making them easily identifiable in the field.
A Natural History of the Mojave Desert by Lawrence R. Walker; Frederick H. Landau
Call Number: Lied Library Book Stacks QH104.5.M65 W35 2018
Publication Date: 2018-03-27
The Mojave Desert has a rich natural history. Despite being sandwiched between the larger Great Basin and Sonoran Deserts, it has enough mountains, valleys, canyons, and playas for any eager explorer. Ancient and current waterways carve the bajadas and valley bottoms. This diverse topography gives rise to a multitude of habitats for plants and animals, many of which are found nowhere else in the world. A Natural History of the Mojave Desert explores how a combination of complex geology, varied geography, and changing climate has given rise to intriguing flora and fauna--including almost 3,000 plant species and about 380 terrestrial vertebrate animal species. Of these, one quarter of the plants and one sixth of the animals are endemic. The authors, who, combined, have spent more than six decades living in and observing the Mojave Desert, offer a scientifically insightful and personally observed understanding of the desert. They invite readers to understand how the Mojave Desert looks, sounds, feels, tastes, and smells. They prompt us to understand how humans have lived in this desert where scant vegetation and water have challenged humans, past and present. A Natural History of the Mojave Desert provides a lively and informed guide to understanding how life has adapted to the hidden riverbeds, huge salt flats, tiny wetlands, and windswept hills that characterize this iconic desert.
I haven't done much writing about nature. I want advice and examples.
In Lied Library, check the shelves in these call number areas: PS163 and QH81.
Writing about Nature by John A. Murray
Call Number: QH14.M87 2003
Publication Date: 2003-12-15
Originally published by the Sierra Club in 1995, this handbook has already helped thousands of aspiring writers, scholars, and students share their experiences with nature and the outdoors. Using exercises and examples, John Murray covers genres, techniques, and publication issues. He uses examples from such masters as Barry Lopez, Annie Dillard, Larry McMurtry, Edward Abbey, Ernest Hemingway, and Henry David Thoreau. Also included are recommended readings, a directory of creative writing programs, professional organizations for writers, and a directory of environmental organizations. This revised edition includes a new chapter on nature writing and environmental activism. "Nature is our grandest and oldest home, older than language, grander than consciousness. John Murray knows that in his bones, and he shares his knowledge generously with anyone who opens this book. Whether you write about the earth for publication or only for deepening your perceptions, you will find keen-eyed guidance here."--Scott Russell Sanders, author of Staying Put
The Oxford Book of Nature Writing by Richard Mabey (Editor)
Call Number: QH81 .O97 1995
Publication Date: 1995-05-04
"The Great Central Plain of California, during the months of March, April, and May, was one smooth, continuous bed of honey-bloom, so marvelously rich that, in walking from one end of it to the other, a distance of more than 400 miles, your foot would press about a hundred flowers at every step.... Sauntering in any direction, hundreds of these happy sun-plants brushed against my feet and closed over them as if I were wading in liquid gold. The air was sweet with fragrance, and larks sang their blessed songs, rising on the wing as I advanced, then sinking out of sight in the polleny sod, while myriads of wild bees stirred the lower air with their monotonous hum--monotonous, yet forever fresh and sweet as every-day sunshine." So wrote John Muir exactly one hundred years ago, in a passage that conveys not only the natural beauty of California, but also Muir's great love of the outdoors. In The Oxford Book of Nature Writing, John Mabey has brought together a sampler of some of the greatest writings on nature ever penned, in pieces that capture our endless fascination with the natural world. There are passages from ancient writers such as Aesop and Aristotle and Pliny, from the medieval manuscripts of Albertus Magnus, and from Anton van Leeuwenhoek's descriptions of microscopic animals. Mabey provides excerpts from the prose of the great Romantic writers, including Dorothy and William Wordsworth, Samuel Coleridge and William Hazlett, from the journals of Henry David Thoreau and from Jean-Jacques Rousseau's letters on botany, and from the naturalist writings of Charles Darwin, George Audubon, and Alexander von Humboldt. Perhaps most impressive is the gallery of contemporary nature writers represented here--a veritable who's who that includes excerpts from Barry Lopez's Arctic Dreams, Aldo Leopold's A Sand County Almanac, Loren Eiseley's The Immense Journey, Lewis Thomas's The Lives of a Cell, Bill McKibben's The End of Nature, and Annie Dillard's Pilgrim at Tinker Creek. Mabey includes as well the work of scientists such as Nobel Laureate Niko Tinbergen, Jane Goodall, and Edward O. Wilson, plus pieces from such noted authors as Peter Matthiessen, E.B. White, George Orwell, and Primo Levi. Here then are two thousand years of great nature writing. Ranging from the fabulous imaginings of medieval bestiaries, to accounts of far-flung expeditions to the corners of the globe, to contemporary science writings that combine beautiful description, scientific accuracy, and ecological concern, this book will delight everyone who loves nature and the great outdoors as well as all lovers of fine writing.
Coyote at Large by Katrina Schimmoeller Peiff
Call Number: PS163 .P45 2000
Publication Date: 2000-10-01
Coyote at large shatters the misconception that nature writing -- works that seem limited to expressing conventional awe, reverence, piety and wonder -- is a humorless genre. In this important and surprising book, Katrina Peiffer reveals and explores the comedy and humor long overlooked in traditional and contemporary environmental literature. Edward Abbey, Louise Erdrich, Wendell Berry, and Rachel Carson, whom the author dubs "comic moralists", command center stage in this study. But in playful textual interludes, the trickster-coyote of Native American mythology appears in the wings, roaming at large through the prose and poetry of Simon Ortiz, Ursula Le Guin, Sally Carrighar, and Gary Snyder, providing a recurring analog for how comedy and humor show themselves in the larger canon of American nature writing. Lively writing coupled with a delightfully wiley approach make Coyote at Large an engaging and enlightening read for ecocritics as well as students of American literature.