The Missing Lynx: The Past and Future of Britain's Lost


The Missing Lynx: The Past and Future of Britain's Lost Mammals The missing Lynx by Ross Barnett is a superb book about the recent in earth terms and indeed current megafauna extinction, and basically how humans are to blame It focuses on several species that used to live in the UK such as the cave hyena I love my natural history so this book is right up my street It s very accessible, and funny, as well as a very sobering read The reintroduction of species is also very much in the news, so this is a very timely read. A great book, describing the range of megafauna that have been lost and the techniques used to find out about them The author is clearly very passionate about his subject and has a great deal of expertise, having worked at the cutting edge of research into many of these species.It is striking to realise how much of a difference these beasts would have made to the ecology of prehistoric Britain and Europe, and how little this is taken into account in so many ecological texts. Wonderful book from start to finish Anyone who is not a scientist need not worry about being bamboozled It is well written in a language most will understand explaining the fate of many animals, now extinct, what we as humans did to cause that and what we must learn in order to be able to live alongside or reintroduce some species It is at times breathtakingly sad, at others very witty but not once does it fail to hold the reader s attention It is a book every person should read in order to allow us to learn to change our ways to stop the destruction of the habitats of many animals and allow some to come back to where they once lived Hope for our future in a book I loved this book It takes us in order of approximate time since extinction through all the mammalian megafauna for which there is fossil evidence that they once lived in Britain There is enough information on the ecology of each species to understand how they lived and when why they died out, both here and globally It s a sorry but should be well known tale fair cop, we did it, usually though climate change may have helped at times It warms up though as the story nears the present, telling of animals that were certainly here in historical times and are even still extant elsewhere in the world By this point we are looking at the possibility of reintroduction to GB Sadly, and much as I d personally love to see wolves and even bears back here, I have to concur that it s very unlikely But, given that we now have unofficial wild boar roaming around, and beavers poised to spread in several counties once the nod is given why not the lynx too Please, please This new book by DeepFriedDNA twitter handle is a must read for anyone interested in the fate of our faunal history If you ve ever read Ross s posts on twilightbeasts.org blog you ll know he is a science communicator extraordinaire As a kid I had little sense of the scale of time and didn t really distinguish between the time of the dinosaurs and the time of mammoths, woolly rhino etc Working in the ancient DNA field changed all that the loss of these species feels very fresh This sense off recent loss is all the tangible from reading this book It makes me wonder how the next generation will feel about the species we ll continue to lose in our life time Highly recommended read for all age groups and for scientists and non scientists alike. Ross Barnett has a great combination of gifts for writing, for comedy, and for communicating science I have rarely learned so much while laughing so much It reminds me of Bill Bryson and Stephen Fry popular writers who are incredibly erudite He shares their impeccable radar for telling the reader what s relevant and making previously arcane topics, er, topical What was, for me, murky prehistory has suddenly snapped into exciting focus. Just started reading this book and I am hooked Dr Barnett knows his topic and it shows If you have even the slightest interest in the extinction of the Ice Age mega fauna I recommend getting this book AND following Dr Barnett on Twitter. Britain was a very different place , years ago home to lions, lynx, bears, wolves, bison and many megafauna But as its climate changed and human populations expanded, most of early Britain s largest mammals disappeared Will advances in science and technology mean that we can one day bring these mammals back And should we In The Missing Lynx, palaeontologist Ross Barnett uses case studies, new fossil discoveries and biomolecular evidence to paint a picture of these lost species and to explore the ecological significance of their disappearance He discusses how the Britons these animals shared their lives with might have viewed them and investigates why some species survived while others vanishedBarnett also looks in detail at the realistic potential of reintroductions, rewilding and even of resurrection in Britain and overseas, from the successful return of beavers in Argyll to the revolutionary Pleistocene Park in Siberia, which has already seen progress in the revival of mammoth steppe grasslandAs widespread habitat destruction, climate change and an ever growing human population lead us inexorably towards the sixth extinction, this timely book explores the spaces that extinction has left unfilled And by helping us to understand why some of our most charismatic animals are gone, Ross Barnett encourages us to look to a brighter future, one that might see these missing beasts returned to the land on which they once lived and died Ross has written a thoroughly readable, enjoyable and rewarding study of fauna that were once at home on the British Isles A great study of the past with plenty of lessons for our future, and our continued relationship with the animals that share the planet with us.

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