THE LITTLE DEER OF THE FLORIDA KEYS by Hope Ryden

THE LITTLE DEER OF THE FLORIDA KEYS

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KIRKUS REVIEW

Ryden sets the scene by evoking the beauties of the Florida Keys, and her photos too reflect the tranquility of this ""tropical paradise"" where the unique Key deer (bucks range in weight from 80 to 110 pounds; some full-grown does do not exceed 35 pounds) coexist with alligators, osprey, great white herons, and other endangered species. A few color photos and more than 50 black-and-white ones provide closeup views of the mangrove thickets and of other wildlife, and especially of the deer in representative postures (females greeting each other, bucks fighting, a mother rearing up to defend her faun) that match Ryden's description of their behavior, in addition, her text traces man's impact on the deer, who were spotted by a Columbus crewman, hunted down in the 19th and early 20th century until they were so scarce they were believed extinct, and further endangered in the 1950s by developers who fought a proposed reservation. Today, thanks to a dedicated U.S. warden's pursuit of poachers and the establishment in 1957 of the National Key Deer Refuge, the subspecies is making a ""remarkable comeback""--though it is still on the endangered list and subject to new threats from pet dogs and highway accidents. As pictured here, by the author/photographer of other wild-animal appreciations, they will win a new round of supporters.

Pub Date: May 9th, 1978
Publisher: Putnam