Date of this Version
Focusing on the plight of natural ecosystems in the Great Plains, Fritz Knopf and Fred Samson give prominent coverage to the region's “charismatic megafauna" and provide an excellent overview of the ecology and conservation of most vertebrate taxa. The editors granted their individual authors considerable leeway, resulting in contributions that are authoritative but unintegrated with each other. For example, in the Preface and most of the chapters, the Great Plains includes the tall grass prairie as well as the short and mixed grass prairie traditionally associated with the Great Plains region. In chapters on wetlands and fishes, tall grass prairie is explicitly excluded, and the latter chapter confines itself to the Central and Southern Plains.