Southern African Mammals Made Simple, by Doug Newman and Gordon King
Southern African Mammals Made Simple, by Doug Newman and Gordon King will appeal to both local and foreign visitors to Southern African game parks.
Although some southern African mammals are distinctive, many have features in common with other mammals and are more challenging to tell apart, especially when seen from a distance. This book is designed not as a standard field guide, but rather as a detailed visual guide that simplifies the task of identifying mammals. To distinguish a given species, simply select the appropriate group from each of three sections of the book, which progressively narrow down the field.
• categorise mammals into broad 'family' groups on the basis of shared distinguishing features, rather than on their formal taxonomic relationships,
• then, break these 'families' down into visual groups, and
• finally, present species accounts for each visual group, giving up to three colour-coded key pointers. A successful identification depends on matching one feature in red type or three features in orange type within the visual group.
You must go through all three steps to arrive at the combination of family, visual group and key pointers that identifies a particular mammal to species level. [...]
How to use this book
Each species featured In this book is assigned to one of 14 distinct 'family' groups. As already mentioned, within the context of this book 'family' refers simply to a group of animals that share some broad features and is not to be confused with taxonomic families. In some cases these 'families' are further subdivided into visual groups, the members of which share quite specific physical features. Here are three basic steps to identifyng your mystery mammal:
STEP ONE: SEPARATING FAMILIES: To decide which of the 14 family groups you are dealing with, refer to pp.9-14, study the illustrations and family features highlighted by the pointers and read the accompanying text. Once you have found the family group to which your mammal belongs, continue to the relevant page as indicated.
STEP TWO: SEPARATING THE VISUAL GROUP: Read the general introduction to the family group, paying particular attention to the features summarised under 'LOOK FOR'. Then study the silhouettes that follow, which present typical or representative species within each visual group.When you have identified the visual group that represents your mammal, follow the page reference and turn to where the species accounts for that visual group start. If there is only a single visual group for that family, then proceed straight to the species accounts.
STEP THREE: IDENTIFYING SPECIES: Check each species within the visual group. Pointers on each illustration show the features that separate a particular species from all others within the same visual group. Characteristic features are repeated in the 'AT A GLANCE' box at the bottom of the page. This box summarises the visual clues and other criteria (for example, distribution) relevant to the identification of that species. Similar-looking species are also listed here. A successful identification relies on matching all three features in type or one feature in red within the visual group. In instances where a red feature is given in addition to three orange features, it may be considered as an alternative matching characteristic. [...]
This is an excerpt from Southern African Mammals Made Simple, by Doug Newman and Gordon King.
Title: Southern African Mammals Made Simple
Author: Doug Newman, Gordon King
Publisher: Penguin Random House South Africa
Imprint: Struik Nature
Cape Town, South Africa 2014
ISBN 9781920572389 / ISBN 978-1-92-057238-9
Softcover, 15 x 21 cm, 104 pages, throughout colour images
Newman, Doug und King, Gordon im Namibiana-Buchangebot
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