Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
Effective Conservation ScienceData Not Dogma$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

Peter Kareiva, Michelle Marvier, and Brian Silliman

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780198808978

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: December 2017

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780198808978.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 06 May 2021

From Silent Spring to The Frog of War

From Silent Spring to The Frog of War

The forgotten role of natural history in conservation science

(p.85) Chapter 13 From Silent Spring to The Frog of War
Effective Conservation Science

David K. Skelly

Oxford University Press

This chapter presents two examples to demonstrate that natural history is the necessary basis of any reliable understanding of the world. More than a half century ago, Rachel Carson revolutionized the public’s view of pesticides. The foundation of her success was the careful use of natural history data, collated from across North America. The examples she assembled left little doubt that DDT and other pesticides were causing a widespread decline in birds. More recently, the case for the impact of atrazine on wildlife was based on laboratory experiments, without the advantage of natural history observations. For atrazine, natural history observations now suggest that other chemical agents are more likely to be responsible for feminization of wildlife populations. Developing expectations for scientists to collect natural history information can help to avoid over-extrapolating lab results to wild populations, a tendency often seen when those lab results conform to preconceptions about chemicals in the environment.

Keywords:   Atrazine, DDT, natural history, pesticide, Rachel Carson, Silent Spring, Feminization, amphibians

Oxford Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs , and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us .