HIDDEN LIFE OF THE DESERT by Thomas Wiewandt

HIDDEN LIFE OF THE DESERT

by & photographed by
Email this review

KIRKUS REVIEW

Striking photographs of Sonoran desert scenery and wildlife illustrate this celebration of an ecosystem, an enlarged and revised version of a 1990 title. Chapter by chapter, over five seasons (two summers: one dry, one wet), the writer, an ecologist and natural-history photographer, describes and explains changes in the weather and wildlife in this environment of extremes. He mentions 34 different species of plants and 50 different animals; most appear in the photographs, and an appendix provides Latin names. An introduction and map set the stage. A concluding essay, “Facing the Future,” explains challenges facing the American Southwest, including population growth, water shortages and invasive species. Some memorable photographs are reproduced from the earlier version—a roadrunner feeding a lizard to her chicks, a kissing bug (conenose) sucking blood from a packrat’s leg—but most are new. The labels are more detailed, the text more informative and the intended audience clearly older than that of the earlier work. Extensive suggested references include websites, books for teens and adults, books for children and Spanish-language resources. This deserves more than regional attention. (glossary, index) (Nonfiction. 12 up)

Pub Date: May 1st, 2010
ISBN: 978-0-87842-555-6
Page count: 96pp
Publisher: Mountain Press
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 15th, 2010