LOST LAND OF THE DODO
The Ecological History of Mauritius, Réunion and Rodrigues

ANTHONY CHEKE and JULIAN HUME
480pp 16 COLOUR PLATES 89 ILLUS 20 MAPS 2008 LIST PRICE: £35.00 N089

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Description
The Mascarene Islands in the southern Indian Ocean were once home to an extraordinary range of birds and reptiles. Colonisation by European settlers in the 1600s led to dramatic changes: the birds and tortoises were slaughtered while newly-introduced animals destroyed their eggs, the forests were logged and invasive plants devastated the ecosystem. The dodo was gone from Mauritius within fifty years of human settlement, and many other native vertebrates followed over the next 150 years. The product of more than thirty years’ research, this is a comprehensive account of the islands' changing ecology, interspersed with human stories, the islands' bio-geographical anomalies, and much else. The book is richly illustrated with maps, rare contemporary illustrations of the animals and their environment, illustrated box texts on each extinct vertebrate species, and superb colour plates.
A wonderful account of the history of the destruction of the Mascarene Islands, beautifully produced . . . TIMES LITERARY SUPPLEMENT