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What Should a Clever Moose Eat?: Natural History, Ecology, and the North Woods
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What Should a Clever Moose Eat?: Natural History, Ecology, and the North Woods

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4.12  ·  Rating details ·  34 ratings  ·  8 reviews
How long should a leaf live? When should blueberries ripen? And what should a clever moose eat? Questions like these may seem simple or downright strange—yet they form the backbone of natural history, a discipline that fostered some of our most important scientific theories, from natural selection to glaciation. Through careful, patient observations of the organisms that l ...more
Paperback, 336 pages
Published February 4th 2016 by Island Press
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Clare O'Beara
Thirty years of experience and fond rambling around the North American woods have gone into John Pastor's book, which engages us by posing seemingly simple queries like the title one, then demonstrates that the answers are more complex. Research carried out by ecology students and others, compared with notes from naturalists and explorers centuries ago, are building a jigsaw puzzle picture into which we are still slotting pieces. Like, the beavers built dams which created ponds that led to meado ...more
M. Sarki
May 11, 2018 rated it it was ok
Shelves: abandoned
Much too scientific for me. As much as the title interested me, I found the book too cerebral and ultimately boring. Not enough to interest me in returning each day to read until the end.
Schuyler Wallace
Sep 15, 2017 rated it really liked it


I thought when I saw the title of the book, “What Should a Clever Moose Eat?” that I would be treated to a light version of wildlife escapades in the North Woods. It turns out that the book is a scientific treatise of esoteric subjects such as ecosystems, shapes of leaves and trees, food webs, population cycles, foragers and their prey, and examination of fecal pellets. Yikes!

Dr. John Pastor is a biologist specializing in Forestry and Soil Science who has taught Mathematical Ecology, Ecosystems
...more
Doctor J
Aug 05, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I really liked this book! Perhaps it is because I was born and raised for the first 22 years of my life in the North Woods, and graduated from the university where Dr. Pastor now works. But more likely, it is because this is a great book!

There are over 20 essays, grouped into five related topics, all exploring some aspect of the Natural History, Ecology, and the North Woods (the book’s very descriptive subtitle). Note that it is NOT a field guide, although it would be a wonderful complement to
...more
Suzanne
Oct 30, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This is a wonderful book. As a fan of Loren Eiseley, John McPhee, and Gerald Durrell, I found this a delightful and informative guide to a part of North America I have known and loved all my life. It's not just the moose --- Pastor guides us through the interdependence of so many parts of this complex and resilient ecosystem. I'm looking forward to his next book!
Wisconsin Alumni
John Pastor MS’77, PhD’80
Author

From the author:
How long should a leaf live? When should blueberries ripen? What should a clever moose eat?

Ecologist John Pastor answers these questions and more as he explores the natural history of the North Woods in his new collection of essays, What Should a Clever Moose Eat? Beginning with the geological history of the region and moving through the arrival of plants, herbivores, predators, and finally humans, Pastor is a joyful observer of nature who moves de
...more
Tiz. T.
Jun 11, 2016 rated it liked it
Shelves: science-biology
I enjoy books about biology and ecobiology greatly. A buzz in the meadows, the name of the shrewd... all interesting tales that teach you a lot about nature and the world we live in.

This book is more informative than either, and more wast in scope. Perhaps too informative and too vast, for it reads more like an university testbook than a layperson book, which is a pity because it is full of interesting tidbits and information.

In short, great if you like the genre... but not so much if you prefer
...more
Cat
Nov 08, 2018 added it
Oh, this was far more technical than I'd thought it would be. This is an entire ecological look at the North Woods and it's whole history. I browsed the book, more than read it cover to cover. I am sure there is someone out there who will thrill to the story., it is very well researched and concise...but for myself, too much. Not saying it isn't fascinating- it is. And I did enjoy what I read, but , too much for me. I'll continue to browse it.

I received a Kindle ARC from Netgalley in exchange fo
...more
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