Fossil Treasures of the Anza-Borrego Desert

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9780932653505: Fossil Treasures of the Anza-Borrego Desert
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The fossils of Anza-Borrego include leaf impressions, shells, bones, teeth, and animal tracks. This record of more than 550 types of fossil plants and animals ranges from microscopic pollen and water fleas to walrus bones and mammoth skeletons. The fossils have been the focus of ongoing research, study, and interpretation since the mid-1850s. Extensive collections from the Imperial Valley College Museum and the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County now reside in California State Park's Colorado Desert District Stout Research Center in Borrego Springs. The results of the past several decades of study by leading researchers from across the nation can now be seen in this comprehensive work.

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From the Publisher:

Fossil Treasures of the Anza-Borrego Desert won a 2007 Benjamin Franklin Award from the Independent Book Publishers Association, winning the gold medal in Science/Environment; the award was presented at a ceremony during Book Expo America in New York City.

Fossil Treasures of the Anza-Borrego Desert, published by Sunbelt Publications in partnership with the State Parks and the Anza-Borrego Foundation/Institute, also took a first place in the San Diego Interest category at the 13th annual ceremony of the San Diego Book Awards in May.

An Alternate Selection of the Discovery Channel Book Club, Fossil Treasures was written by 23 experts in paleontology, zoology, geology, climate, and environmental science. The ground-breaking work has been widely praised by paleontologists at such institutions as the American Museum of Natural History, the California Academy of Sciences, Yale University's Peabody Museum of Natural History, and the Museum of the Rockies.

The Anza-Borrego Desert region boasts the longest continuous fossil record in North America, with fossils of such unique animals as giant camels, bathtub-sized tortoises, and a sabertooth cat; the book has chapters dedicated to each family, as well as general topics such as geology and paleoclimates. With over 300 color illustrations, including five full-color paleolandscapes, and dozens of charts and maps, the book is written for the educated general reader.

The book was edited by George T. Jefferson, a California State Park district paleontologist, and Lowell Lindsay, publisher and board member of the Association of Earth Science Editors.

From the Inside Flap:

Southern California's Anza-Borrego Desert State Park® is a vast, mostly arid desert, but the ancient landscapes of Anza-Borrego were richly populated riparian forests and savanna. Before that, it held a tropical inland ocean teeming with marine life. Today's eroded badlands provide North America's most continuous history of life for most of the last 7 million years—one of the richest, most varied fossil records of its time in the western hemisphere—opening windows onto the region's long-vanished past.The key to this prehistoric world is paleontology, the study of the fossilized remains of ancient life. The fossils of Anza-Borrego include leaf impressions, shells, bones, teeth, and animal tracks. This record of more than 550 types of fossil plants and animals ranges from microscopic pollen and water fleas to walrus bones and mammoth skeletons. The fossils have been the focus of ongoing research, study, and interpretation since the mid-1850s. Extensive collections from the Imperial Valley College Museum and the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County now reside in California State Park's Colorado Desert District Stout Research Center in Borrego Springs. The results of the past several decades of study by leading researchers from across the nation can now be seen in this comprehensive work.Early chapters explore background themes and concepts before raising the curtain on Anza-Borrego's last seven million years, starting with the Imperial Sea episode. Central chapters present the real stars of the story—individual groups of animals. The bestiary reads like a who's-who of many of the most unique fossil vertebrates on earth—bathtub-sized tortoises, the sabertooth cat, giant ground sloths, the giant short-faced bear, the largest known mammoth, a giant camel, and the largest flying bird ever to fly northern hemisphere skies. Closing chapters discuss fossil footprints, intercontinental connections, and paleoclimates and environmental change in the Anza-Borrego desert region.Exquisite illustrations and color foldout paleolandscapes bring the past to life throughout the text. Color maps, charts, tables, an extensive glossary, index, and a bibliography are included.

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