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Killer Algae: True Tale of Biological... (99 Edition)

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Killer Algae: True Tale of Biological... (99 Edition) Cover

 

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Publisher Comments:

Two decades ago, a Stuttgart zoo imported a lush, bright green seaweed for its aquarium. Caulerpa taxifolia was captively bred by the zoo and exposed, for years, to chemicals and ultraviolet light. Eventually a sample of it found its way to the Oceanographic Museum in Monaco, then headed by Jacques Cousteau. Fifteen years ago, while cleaning its tanks, that museum dumped the pretty green plant into the Mediterranean.

This supposedly benign little plant—that no one thought could survive the waters of the Mediterranean—has now become a pernicious force. Caulerpa taxifolia now covers 10,000 acres of the coasts of France, Spain, Italy, and Croatia, and has devastated the Mediterranean ecosystem. And it continues to grow, unstoppable and toxic. When Alexandre Meinesz, a professor of biology at the University of Nice, discovered a square-yard patch of it in 1984, he warned biologists and oceanographers of the potential species invasion. His calls went unheeded. At that point, one person could have pulled the small patch out and ended the problem. Now, however, the plant has defeated the French Navy, thwarted scientific efforts to halt its rampage, and continues its destructive journey into the Adriatic Sea.

Killer Algae is the biological and political horror story of this invasion. For despite Meinesz's pleas to scientists and the French government, no agency was willing to take responsibility for the seaweed, and while the buck was passed, the killer algae grew. And through it all, the Oceanographic Museum in Monaco sought to exculpate itself. In short, Killer Algae—part detective story and part bureaucratic object lesson—is a classic case of a devastating ecological invasion and how not to deal with it.

"[U]tterly fascinating, not only because of the ecological battles [Meinesz] describes but also because of the wondrous natural phenomena involved."—Richard Bernstein, New York Times

"Akin to Rachel Carson's Silent Spring, Killer Algae shows the courage of a voice in the wilderness."—Choice

"A textbook case of how not to manage an environmental disaster."—Kirkus Reviews

"Meinesz's story is a frightening one, reading more like a science fiction thriller than a scientific account."—Publishers Weekly

Book News Annotation:

It was beautiful, hearty, and endured cool temperatures, so aquarium specialists began using it throughout Europe. In 1984 it was noticed in the Mediterranean under the Oceanographic Museum of Monaco. Meinesz (biology, U. of Nice) describes how it has since become a major problem throughout the region: growing everywhere and toxic to herbivores that might otherwise keep it in check. diterran<'e>e/> was published in 1997 and translated by Simberloff (environmental sciences, U. of Tennessee-Knoxville) for the 1999 cloth edition.
Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)

Synopsis:

A Choice 2000 Outstanding Academic Title

Accidentally flushed into the Mediterranean by the Oceanographic Museum in Monaco, the aquarium plant Caulerpa taxifolia flourished where no one thought it could survive. Killer Algae tells the story of the invasion that followed, and the bureaucratic delays that allowed the plant to spread from a patch that could have been hand-weeded-when author Alexandre Meinesz first discovered it-to a vast carpet now choking more than 10,000 acres of Mediterranean coastline.

About the Author

Alexandre Meinesz is a professor of biology at the University of Nice and a member of various scientific committees on the environment.

Daniel Simberloff is the Nancy Gore Hunger Professor of Environmental Studies at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville.

Table of Contents

Foreword by David Quammen

Preface

Acknowledgments

Chapter One: From the Discovery of the Alga in Monaco to Its Arrival in France

Chapter Two: The Alga Grows ... and the Polemic Begins

Chapter Three: Caulerpa Taxifolia, Superstar

Chapter Four: The Stakeholders Squabble ... and the Alga Spreads

Chapter Five: Research Progresses ... and the Polemic Persists

Chapter Six: Chiaroscuro: 1997-1998

Chapter Seven: The Three Lessons of Caulerpa

Appendix One: The Biology of Caulerpa taxifolia as Known in 1991

Appendix Two: Chronology of a Heralded Invasion

Appendix Three: Table of Measures

Appendix Four: Acronyms of Organizations

Appendix Five: Diagram of the French Government

Notes

Index

Product Details

ISBN:
9780226519234
Translator:
Simberloff, Daniel
Foreword:
Quammen, David
Translator:
Simberloff, Daniel
Foreword by:
Quammen, David
Foreword:
Quammen, David
Author:
Meinesz, Alexandre
Author:
Simberloff, Daniel
Author:
Quammen, David
Publisher:
University of Chicago Press
Subject:
General
Subject:
Environmental Science
Subject:
Ecology
Subject:
Mediterranean Sea
Subject:
Alien plants
Subject:
Life Sciences - Ecology
Subject:
Caulerpa taxifolia -- Mediterranean Sea.
Subject:
Toxic marine algae -- Mediterranean Sea.
Subject:
Environmental Studies-General
Edition Description:
1
Publication Date:
20010531
Binding:
TRADE PAPER
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Illustrations:
8 color plates, 5 line drawings, 7 maps
Pages:
360
Dimensions:
8 x 6 in

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Related Subjects

History and Social Science » Politics » General
Reference » Science Reference » Technology
Science and Mathematics » Environmental Studies » Environment
Science and Mathematics » Environmental Studies » General
Science and Mathematics » Oceanography » Seaweed and Algae

Killer Algae: True Tale of Biological... (99 Edition) Used Trade Paper
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Product details 360 pages University of Chicago Press - English 9780226519234 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by ,
A Choice 2000 Outstanding Academic Title

Accidentally flushed into the Mediterranean by the Oceanographic Museum in Monaco, the aquarium plant Caulerpa taxifolia flourished where no one thought it could survive. Killer Algae tells the story of the invasion that followed, and the bureaucratic delays that allowed the plant to spread from a patch that could have been hand-weeded-when author Alexandre Meinesz first discovered it-to a vast carpet now choking more than 10,000 acres of Mediterranean coastline.

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