The Dodo and the Solitaire: A Natural History

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Indiana University Press, 2013 - Science - 406 pages
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The Dodo and the Solitaire is the most comprehensive book to date about these two famously extinct birds. It contains all the known contemporary accounts and illustrations of the dodo and solitaire, covering their history after extinction and discussing their ecology, classification, phylogenetic placement, and evolution. Both birds were large and flightless and lived on inhabited islands some 500 miles east of Madagascar. The first recorded descriptions of the dodo were provided by Dutch sailors who first encountered them in 1598—within 100 years, the dodo was extinct. So quickly did the bird disappear that there is insufficient evidence to form an entirely accurate picture of its appearance and ecology, and the absence has led to much speculation. The story of the dodo, like that of the solitaire, has been pieced together from fragments, both literary and physical, that have been carefully compiled and examined in this extraordinary volume.

 

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Contents

Written Accounts of the Dodo
3
Written Accounts of the Rodrigues Solitaire
55
Contemporary Illustrations
69
Secondary Contemporary Sources and Miscellanea
107
Anatomical Evidences
169
The Natural History of the Dodo and the Solitaire
265
Afterword Memories of Green
371
Notes
375
Bibliography
383
Index
399
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About the author (2013)

Jolyon C. Parish completed a degree in Geology and Palaeontology at the Royal School of Mines, Imperial College, London, and wrote his D.Phil. at Oxford on the evolutionary history and paleobiology of Ankylosauria.

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