The American horseshoe crab that comes ashore on the East Coast in vast numbers to mate and nest is much the same creature that haunted the coast before the time of the dinosaurs. It is among the world's most intensely studied marine invertebrates, critical to our understanding of many groups of organisms, both modern and extinct, and crucial to the ecology of large estuaries such as the Delaware Bay. Some stocks of this great survivor, whose ancestors made it through the mass extinction some 286 million years ago, have been severely depleted today because of overfishing and habitat destruction.
Carl N. Shuster, Jr., H. Jane Brockmann, and Robert B. Barlow are at the forefront of research on Limulus polyphemus, and in this book they bring together twenty scientists who have worked on all aspects of horseshoe crab biology to compile the first fully detailed, comprehensive view of the species. An indispensable resource, the volume describes the horseshoe crab's behavior, natural history, and ecology; its anatomy, physiology, distribution, development, and life cycle; the puzzle of its immune system; and its present management and future conservation.
Overall, The American Horseshoe Crab is a fine compendium of information, one I will refer to frequently. The volume also provides an essential tool for anyone involved with developing the regulations that will be required to protect this intriguing species in perpetuity.
[This] has to be the most thorough book on this amazing creature ever written or ever likely to be written. It is a compilation of essays by some of the crab's foremost researchers...It would be a sad loss if this book were destined merely for reference shelves and university libraries. Each section has its entry point for the novice, its tidbit of fascinating information, ripe for mining by anyone with an inquisitive mind.
Look inside The American Horseshoe Crab and you'll find everything you ever wanted to know about these living trilobite lookalikes from their much filmed shoreline mating to their historic use as fertiliser. This wonderfully illustrated and detailed compendium of information about the horseshoe or king crab is a must for anyone interested in marine arthropods both fossil and living.
This book is a superbly produced synthesis of modern knowledge, in 15 chapters written by 20 experts. It is fully illustrated, with 33 colour plates and many line drawings, and there is an extensive bibliography...This scholarly text is essential for all serious students of arthropods. And it is eminently readable, too.
- 472 pages
- 8 x 9-1/4 inches
- Harvard University Press
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