The Narrow Edge A Tiny Bird, an Ancient Crab, and an Epic Journey Deborah Cramer

Format:
Hardback
Publication date:
11 Jun 2015
ISBN:
9780300185195
Imprint:
Yale University Press
Dimensions:
304 pages: 235 x 156 x 27mm
Illustrations:
10 b-w illus.

Buy this eBook

Yale eBooks are available in a variety of formats, including Kindle, ePub and ePDF. You can purchase this title from a number of online retailers (see below).

In a volume as urgent and eloquent as Rachel Carson’s Silent Spring, this book—winner of the Southern Environmental Law Center's 2016 Reed Environmental Writing Award in the book category—reveals how the health and well-being of a tiny bird and an ancient crab mirrors our own

Winner of the 2016 Rachel Carson Environment Book Award given by the Society of Environmental Journalists
 
Each year, red knots, sandpipers weighing no more than a coffee cup, fly a near-miraculous 19,000 miles from the tip of South America to their nesting grounds in the Arctic and back. Along the way, they double their weight by gorging on millions of tiny horseshoe crab eggs. Horseshoe crabs, ancient animals that come ashore but once a year, are vital to humans, too: their blue blood safeguards our health. Now, the rufa red knot, newly listed as threatened under the Endangered Species Act, will likely face extinction in the foreseeable future across its entire range, 40 states and 27 countries. The first United States bird listed because global warming imperils its existence, it will not be the last: the red knot is the twenty-first century’s “canary in the coal mine.” Logging thousands of miles following the knots, shivering with the birds out on the snowy tundra, tracking them down in bug-infested marshes, Cramer vividly portrays what’s at stake for millions of shorebirds and hundreds of millions of people living at the sea edge. The Narrow Edge offers an uplifting portrait of the tenacity of tiny birds and of the many people who, on the sea edge we all share, keep knots flying and offer them safe harbor.
 
Winner of the 2016 National Academies Communications Award for best book that honors the best in science communications. Sponsored by the Keck Futures Initiative—a program of the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine, with the support of the W.M. Keck Foundation

More about this title

For more on The Narrow Edge visit the YaleBooks blog.


Deborah Cramer is the author of Great Waters: An Atlantic Passage and Smithsonian Ocean: Our Water, Our World. She lives in Gloucester, MA.
 

"A scientific page-turner, full of intricacies and astonishment. Exhaustively researched and elegantly written, The Narrow Edge is a must for anyone interested in the natural world, our relationship to it, and our stewardship of it."—Philadelphia Inquirer


"An eloquent interweaving of history, field practice and keen personal observation."—Nature


"It would be difficult not to be moved by this deeply elegiac yet riveting tale as Deborah Cramer unravels one of nature’s more deeply woven connections . . . it will appeal to fans of nature writing and detective novels alike, for The Narrow Edge reads as both."—Justin Walker, British Ornithology Trust


Winner of the 2016 Reed Environmental Writing Awards, given by Southern Environmental Law Center


Winner of the 2016 Rachel Carson Environment Book Award given by the Society of Environmental Journalists


Winner of the 2016 National Academies Communications Award for best book that honors the best in science communications. Sponsored by the Keck Futures Initiative -- a program of the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine, with the support of the W.M. Keck Foundation


Selected as a 2016 Massachusetts Must Read Book in the Nonfiction category. This recognition is given by the Massachusetts Center for the Book.


"Deborah Cramer has crafted a remarkable tale of science, nature, and humanity. She takes us on a sweeping adventure as she paints the portrait of an unimaginably hardy yet threatened bird."—Susan Solomon, author of The Coldest March


"The Narrow Edge is at once an intimate portrait of the small red knot and a much larger exploration of our wondrous, imperiled world."—Elizabeth Kolbert, author of The Sixth Extinction


"In the face of global warming, is our big brain connected to a big enough heart that we might do something to preserve the beauty of the earth? Heart is no problem for the red knot—20,000 miles on the wing demonstrates that. The finely told story of this bird will, hopefully, help summon greater affection for our home planet.”—Bill McKibben, author of Eaarth


"This book is for anyone who loves adventure: an interwoven tale of humanity and nature in which nature never fails to surprise and delight."—Thomas E. Lovejoy, University Professor of Environmental Science and Policy, George Mason University, and National Geographic Conservation Fellow


"Deborah Cramer provides a unique, first-hand account of a little known and even less appreciated bird. Her adventures with researchers easily take the reader into the world of science and its complex and evolving findings."—John Marzluff, co-author of Gifts of the Crow and author of Welcome to Subirdia



Selected as a 2016 Massachusetts Must Read Book in the Nonfiction category. This recognition is given by the Massachusetts Center for the Book.