Coral Reef Curiosities: Intrigue, Deception and Wonder on the Reef and Beyond
A great way to travel when you need to stay at home
“Wow! I didn’t know that!” Appealing to the curious of all stripes, author Chuck Weikert surprises readers with every page turn, building an appreciation for coral reef creatures to serve as a foundation for protecting them.
Easily accessible and richly illustrated, Coral Reef Curiosities: Intrigue, Deception and Wonder on the Reef and Beyond chronicles the secret lives of coral reef animals. This lively book also reveals important connections between humankind and this most diverse ecosystem, as expressed in art, science and literature from ancient times to today.
Coral Reef Curiosities is populated with the likes of Touch-me-not Sponges, Spanish Dancers, Bumphead Parrotfish, Colossal Squids, Hawksbill Sea Turtles, Nurse Sharks, Great Barracuda, stingrays, octopuses and solar-powered sea slugs.
Each of the 25 chapters is dedicated to a particular kind of animal, uncovering layers of natural and cultural history. Meet scientists and sailors, artists and poets, and famous writers such as Jack London and Herman Melville who helped expand the world’s knowledge of coral reef animals in subtle, surprising ways.
You'll be entranced with the fascinating natural history of coral reefs:
• Discover how the reef’s version of a car wash sometimes backfires for its clients.
• Find out what role the snake-haired sorceress Medusa played in the origin of coral reefs.
• Be charmed by the unassuming, sedentary sea squirt, a creature more like us than we might imagine.
• Learn how some species of groupers solicit moray eels to team up with them for hunting expeditions.
• And why is it that the octopus despises the rat?
As coral reefs face environmental change, knowing their secrets can provide a foundation for protecting them. To quote award-winning director, producer and cinematographer Louie Schwartzberg, "You're going to protect what you love.”“Like a living coral reef…chock full of treasures! … Weikert is your ideal guide to the creatures who populate the most other-worldly and thrilling habitat on our planet.” — Sy Montgomery, author of The Soul of an Octopus, National Book Award Finalist, New York Times Bestseller, Library Journal Best Sci-Tech Book of the Year
“With fresh, precise language (and humor) Chuck Weikert takes us snorkeling with him, revealing unpredictable and surprising connections across time and space.” — Caroline S. Rogers, Marine Ecologist, U. S. Geological Survey Caribbean Field Station; author of Coral Reef Stars and The Mysterious, Magical Mangroves of St. John, U. S. Virgin Islands
“…accessible…informative…very good attention to detail and accuracy…Complex subjects are explained in clear and simple terms…gives the reader an appreciation for the brilliance of these diverse ecosystems.…A natural history tour de force.” — Alan Friedlander, Chief Scientist, National Geographic Pristine Seas Project; Director, Fisheries Ecology Research Lab, University of Hawai'i
“Weikert’s genius is to meet us where we are in our understanding and then to draw us out. A career National Park Service designer and leader of nature programs in the Virgin Islands, he brings the unseen into sharp and value-added focus. This is nature writing as it should be.” — Ed Zahniser, Senior Writer and Editor, U. S. National Park Service Interpretive Design Center
“Chuck Weikert has surpassed his goal to better connect people with reefs…numerous historical paintings, drawings, diagrams and more than 140 brilliant color photographs add to the joy of his creative narratives.” — Gary E. Davis, Aquanaut, Project Tektite I; Research Station Director, U. S. Geological Survey; U. S. National Park Service Chief Ocean Scientist, retired