North America's fastest mammal, the pronghorn can accelerate explosively from a standing start to a top speed of 60 miles per hour--but it can also cruise at 45 miles per hour for many miles. What accounts for the speed of this extraordinary animal, a denizen of the American outback, and what can be observed of this creature's way of life? And what is it like to be a field biologist dedicating twenty years to studying this species? In Built for Speed, John A. Byers answers these questions as he draws an intimate portrait of the most charismatic resident of the American Great Plains. The National Bison Range in western Montana, established in 1908 to snatch bison from the brink of extinction, also inadvertently rescued the largest known remnant of Palouse Prairie. It is within this grassland habitat--home to meadowlarks, rattlesnakes, bighorn sheep, coyotes, elk, snipe, and a panoply of wildflowers--that Byers observes the pronghorn's life from birth to death (a life often as brief as four days, sometimes as long as fifteen years) and from season to season. Readers will also experience the vicarious pleasures of a biologist who is eager to race a pronghorn in his truck, scrutinize bison dung through binoculars, and peer through the gathering dusk of a rainy evening to count the display dives of snipe. A vivid and memorable tale of a first-rate scientist's twenty-year encounter with a magnificent animal, the story of the pronghorn is also a reminder of the crucial role we can play in preserving the fleeting life of the native American grassland. Table of Contents: Preface 1. Anatomy of a Speedster 2. Spring and the Sounds of Snipe 3. First Field Season 4. The Adult Bullies 5. Milk Politics 6. Little Speedsters 7. Columns of Dust 8. Bachelor Workout 9. The Turning Year 10. Making Next Year's Fawns 11. After the Equinox 12. After the Solstice 13. The Floor of the Sky Notes Acknowledgments Index Table of Contents: Foreword by Rick Bass Preface 1. Anatomy of a Speedster 2. Spring and the Sounds of Snipe 3. First Field Season 4. The Adult Bullies 5. Milk Politics 6. Little Speedsters 7. Columns of Dust 8. Bachelor Workout 9. The Turning Year 10. Making Next Year's Fawns 11. After the Equinox 12. After the Solstice 13. The Floor of the Sky Notes Acknowledgments Index Reviews of this book: Byers, a biologist, has studied pronghorns on a refuge in western in Montana for more than 20 years, and this firsthand account of fieldwork in the high-plains grasslands evokes the wonder and beauty of the region as well as the mechanics of how to study such an alert and speedy animal. --Nancy Bent, Booklist John A. Byers is a field biologist who has spent almost a quarter of a century chasing pronghorn antelopes in Montana's National Bison Range. Byers observes his subjects with such patience that he can recognize individual faces the way most people recognize friends and family. He's read John James Audubon and John Muir, and, as he proves with stirring accounts of his experiences in big-sky country, he can spin a phrase with a skill worthy of those master wordsmiths. --Laurence A. Marschall, Natural History Reviews of this book: This is a swift, short take on a fascinating animal. --National Geographic Adventure Byers at all times writes with lucidity and warmth for the animal he has spent literally decades studying...Byers has called our attention to an often overlooked corner of creation: the shortgrass prairie. He urges us--through the strength of his prose and the sincerity of his passion--to conserve that very thing whose absence will be our confounding. --John A. Murray, Bloomsbury Review A Year in the Life of Pronghorn is natural history at its best, a first-person narrative by zoology professor John A. Byers, told with the grace and agility that have made these four-legged Shelby Cobras famous. --Dan R. Barber, Dallas Morning News Byers, professor of zoology at the University of Idaho, has spent 20 years closely observing pronghorn on the National Bison Range in Montana. His account of the animal's ways is thorough and fascinating. --Scientific American This is a book of natural history, rather than an ethological study of a single species, and it brings to mind Frank Fraser Darling's classic study of animal behaviour, A Herd of Red Deer, first published in 1937. In similar style, Byers writes simply and with sensitivity about the ways of life of the pronghorn, and he also brings in his observations and thoughts about the landscape of the prairie and its other inhabitants, from bison to grasshoppers. --Juliet Clutton-Brock, Times Literary Supplement [UK] After describing the basic anatomy of pronghorn, [Byers] details the social system of adult females and their offspring, the feeding and playing behavior of fawns, the behavior of males before and during the rut, and the behavior of males and females after the rut as they prepare for the long winter on the prairie. Throughout, Byers also includes his personal observations of other species that are associated with this region, including snipe, meadowlarks, bison, and elk. With its vivid descriptions of the prairie and the animals that inhabit it, this book is an entertaining read for all audiences. --E. H. Rave, Choice Although a biologist who is obsessed with his subject could spout facts and numbers for hours, Byers suppresses neither his highly poetic sensibility nor his boundless joy in the marvels of life. The result is a work of literature, as when he describes the song of meadowlarks as 'a low flood of burbling that spreads across the prairie like the sheet of light that fireflies make at grass tops after a thunderstorm.' But readers also gain a tremendous sense of pronghorns' lives, down to the tiniest details of how fawns survive. --David Lukas, Los Angeles Times John Byers's Built for Speed is the best modern natural history I know. His profound sense of place, welded to his tenacious observations of the behavior of long-lived individuals, and his knowledge of deep time have exposed the ghosts of predators past on pronghorn. Added pleasure comes from Byers's prose, which is sometimes as thrilling and amusing as watching pronghorn run. You won't find a more passionate exegesis of what it is to be a modern animal behaviorist anywhere. --Patricia Adair Gowaty, PhD, Professor of Ecology, University of Georgia John Byers's beautifully written account of his twenty-year study of pronghorn antelope was sheer pleasure to read. With the eye and empathy of the keenest naturalist, and the voice of a poet, Byers evokes the sights and sounds of the western prairie so vividly that I felt as if I was there in Montana beside him. This splendid book certainly made me want to be. --Sarah Hrdy, author of The Woman that Never Evolved Readers of this book will be transported by its engaging prose into three very different worlds. First, they will gain an appreciation for what fieldwork on large mammals is really like. Second, they will see how there is no substitute for long-term research on marked individuals to gain knowledge on large mammal ecology. Thirdly, they will see a prehistoric world where cheetahs chase pronghorns over the North American Plains, and will be invited to think about how those distant events may affect the biology of modern-day pronghorn. --Marco Festa-Bianchet, Professeur, Ecologie, Universite de Sherbrooke Listen to this serenade for American wild life sung by a biologist who has spend an unimaginable amount of time following his favorite animal, the pronghorn. With great love and humor, John Byers describes the ins and outs of this unassuming but remarkable animal's life while effortlessly educating us about ecology and evolution. --Frans de Waal, author of The Ape and the Sushi Master (BasicBooks, 2001).
Go on the ride of your life with the racing legend himself **with a thrilling NEW CHAPTER on John’s dramatic 2017 crash** ‘Then I was there myself, just another face in the crowd, watching the bikes fly by. The smells, the noise and the speed were all there for me to experience. It was like a massive injection in my head and it just blew my mind. I knew within seconds that I was going to be a TT racer. I didn’t know how or what I was going to have to do to achieve this, and my dad wasn’t going to be keen. Everyone around me was aware of the dangers, but from that moment I knew I had to do it.’ John McGuinness is one of the all-time giants of road racing, with a huge host of victories to his name. But his easy humour and down-to-earth attitude off the bike have always kept people guessing: what’s the truth about the man inside the helmet, that has kept him at the top of such a sport for over 20 years? His autobiography tells the whole story, from his humble beginnings in Morecambe and getting his first bike at the age of 3, to working as a bricklayer and cockle fisherman before deciding to follow his dream, and finally to his many victories in the most dangerous sporting event on the planet. He tells of what it takes to be a champion in such an exacting sport, and to keep winning even though all logic tells you to stop – and when so many of your fellow racers are paying the ultimate price for doing it. This thrilling autobiography gets into the head of the man who stares death in the face, and doesn’t even flinch.
Boys ages 3 to 7 will love the two DC Super Friends stories in this Read & Listen edition deluxe Pictureback. First uncover the cool secrets of Batman's Batmobile, Superman's Space Sled, and all the other fantastic vehicles the Super Friends use to bring in the bad guys. Then follow the action when the Joker steals the Batmobile and leads the Super Friends on a wild ride through Gotham City! This ebook includes Read & Listen audio narration.
How cyclists were the first to push for good roads & became the pioneers of motoring
Author: Carlton Reid
Publisher: Island Press
Cyclists were written out of highway history in the 1920s and 1930s by the all-powerful motor lobby: Roads Were Not Built For Cars tells the real story, putting cyclists center stage again. Not that the book is only about cyclists. It will also contains lots of automotive history because many automobile pioneers were cyclists before becoming motorists. A surprising number of the first car manufacturers were also cyclists, including Henry Ford. Some carried on cycling right through until the 1940s. One famous motor manufacturing pioneer was a racing tricycle rider to his dying day.
Frustrated by ever-increasing prices for telecommunication services and the reluctance of incumbent providers to upgrade their networks to meet 21st century needs, more than 150 communities have built their own citywide cable and FTTH networks. Against great odds and in the face of ferocious opposition by the existing telephone and cable companies in the courts, at the legislature, and in the marketplace, the vast majority have succeeded.To understand how this has occurred and to extract lessons that might be useful for cities deciding whether to build their own networks, we undertook an in-depth examination of three municipally owned networks in Bristol Va., Chattanooga, Tenn., and Lafayette, La. Each of these communities already had access to the Internet via DSL and cable. But in the words of Lafayette City-Parish President Joey Durel, "They wanted more." Without investment in next-generation networks, these cities feared they would be left behind in the transition to the digital economy of the Internet era.