By Michael Hutchins

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Zoology in Early Modern Culture: Intersections of Science, Theology, Philology, and Political and Religious Education (Intersections: Interdisciplinary Studies in Early Modern Culture, Volume 32)

This quantity attempts to map out the exciting amalgam of alternative, in part conflicting ways that formed early glossy zoology. It demonstrates that theology and philology performed a pivotal function within the advanced formation of this new technological know-how.

Peacemaking among Primates

Does biology condemn the human species to violence and warfare? earlier stories of animal habit incline us to respond to convinced, however the message of this ebook is significantly extra positive. with out denying our history of competitive habit, Frans de Waal describes strong tests and balances within the make-up of our closest animal family, and in so doing he indicates that to people making peace is as traditional as making battle.

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Doves are well recognized as symbols of love and peace, and the Holy Spirit in Judeo-Christian cultures is often symbolized as a dove. Birds in myths, literature, and art The legend of the Roc brought back from Marco Polo’s travels may well have a basis in fact in the elephant birds (Aepyornithidae) that appear to have survived into historic times on Madagascar. These birds were flightless, stood 11 feet tall (335 cm) and laid an egg that was large enough to hold the contents of seven ostrich eggs—or as one author suggested, 10,000 hummingbird eggs!

It was a last ditch effort to save the species through captive breeding, but the effort paid off. Condor numbers grew through careful stewardship and, though still critically endangered, the species once again flies free. Along the way a great deal was learned that has been applied to conservation efforts for other species. Other captive breeding and release programs have brought nesting peregrine falcons back to North American cities, and increased bald eagle (Haliaeetus leucocephalus) populations dramatically.

Each has its own story. Rock doves were brought with early immigrants as semi-domesticated birds that were kept for food and sport. House sparrows were brought to control insect pests in the gardens of immigrants, and though not prone to long distance dispersal, succeeded in conquering North America and many other areas as a result of deliberate introductions. For example, many wagon trains heading west from St. Louis took along a cage of house sparrows to assure pest control in gardens at the end of the journey.

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