Darwin Comes to Town: How the Urban Jungle Drives Evolution

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Darwin Comes To Town is a fascinating eye-opener concerning the wildlife that surrounds us in the urban environment. The author, Menno Schilthuizen, is an evolution professor from the Netherlands and also a senior research scientist at the Naturalis Biodiversity Center, and as such he knows what he is writing about. Though international in scope, there is plenty of time spent here in the States, especially in The Big Apple. The goal of the book is an ambitious one, with the author trying to find a citizen scientist to study “How the Urban Jungle Drives Evolution.” The book is a great exploration of the natural history, especially the evolution, that is taking place just outside our city doorsteps. This book will keep those who do not drive still interested in the field.

Schilthuizen tells great natural histories. He also references a lot of case studies to tell his account of how we have changed the world and how some wild creatures have adapted to live with us. But as the author mentions, we need to still protect pristine and wild places for those denizens that cannot adapt to us and what we have created. Urban animals may be wildlife, but the city is not the wild or Nature as we traditionally know it. Most living things live outside the boundaries of the city, even if some biodiversity can now be found there. There are still laws to protect wild creatures. We can probably protect both, as the author suggests, but it is fun science to start this exploration nearby for those who cannot also go far afield from urban centers.

Reviewed By:

Author Menno Schilthuizen
Star Count 4.5/5
Format Hard
Page Count 304 pages
Publisher Picador 
Publish Date 2018-Apr-03
ISBN 9781250127822
Bookshop.org Buy this Book
Issue June 2018
Category Science & Nature


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