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This book chronicles the discovery and analysis of animal fossils found in one of the most important paleontological sites in the world—Porcupine Cave, located at an elevation of 9,500 feet in the Colorado Rocky Mountains. With tens of thousands of identified specimens, this site has become the key source of information on the fauna of North America's higher elevations between approximately 1 million and 600,000 years ago, a period that saw the advance and retreat of glaciers numerous times. Until now, little has been understood about how this dramatic climate change affected life during the middle Pleistocene. In addition to presenting state-of-the-art data from Porcupine Cave, this study also presents groundbreaking analysis on what the data from the site show about the evolutionary and ecological adjustments that occurred in this period, shedding light on how one of the world's most pressing environmental concerns—global climate change—can influence life on earth.
List of Chapter Appendixes
List of Figures
List of Tables
Abbreviations and Definitions
I. The Discovery and Distribution of Fossils
II. Systematic Accounts of Taxa
III. Effect of Environmental Change on the Porcupine Cave Fauna
List of Contributors
Anthony D. Barnosky is Associate Professor in the Department of Integrative Biology at the University of California, Berkeley, and coeditor, with R. A. Martin, of Morphological Change in Quaternary Mammals of North America (1993).
“This is a scholarly work focused principally on description and analysis of the vast array of fossil remains excavated from Porcupine Cave.”—Danny A. Brass Journal Of Cave And Karst Studies
“An outstandingly edited volume. Highly recommended.”—F. S. Szalay Choice: Current Reviews For Academic Libraries
"This comprehensive book makes an important contribution to the literature on Ice Age animals and climate. I expect it will be an important reference work for years to come."—Timothy H. Heaton, University of South Dakota
"This book brings together the state-of-knowledge for this important high-altitude Pleistocene paleontological locality. This synthesis is overlain by an elegant placement of the work's importance in the body of the knowledge related to the single largest threat facing humans today, that of global climate change."—Karel Rogers, Grand Valley State University