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The History of the European Fauna   By: (1858-1934)

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First Page:

THE CONTEMPORARY SCIENCE SERIES.

Edited by HAVELOCK ELLIS.

THE HISTORY OF THE EUROPEAN FAUNA

THE HISTORY OF THE EUROPEAN FAUNA

R. F. SCHARFF, B.Sc., Ph.D., F.Z.S.

Keeper of the Natural History Collections, Science and Art Museum, Dublin; Member of the Royal Irish Academy; Corresponding Member of the Senckenbergische Naturforschende Gesellschaft.

WITH ILLUSTRATIONS.

LONDON WALTER SCOTT, LIMITED PATERNOSTER SQUARE 1899

CONTENTS.

PAGE CHAPTER I. INTRODUCTION 1 36

CHAPTER II. PRELIMINARY CONSIDERATIONS 37 88

CHAPTER III. THE FAUNA OF BRITAIN 89 131

CHAPTER IV. THE ARCTIC FAUNA 132 188

CHAPTER V. THE SIBERIAN MIGRATION 189 244

CHAPTER VI. THE ORIENTAL MIGRATION 245 286

CHAPTER VII. THE LUSITANIAN FAUNA 287 308

CHAPTER VIII. THE ALPINE FAUNA 309 350

BIBLIOGRAPHY 351 354

INDEX 355 364

PREFACE.

Our knowledge of the present and past fauna of Europe is as yet insufficient to indicate with precision the original homes of its component elements, but I hope that the lines of research laid down here, and the method of treatment adopted, will aid zoologists and geologists in collecting materials for a more comprehensive study of the history of our animals. I trust also that a fresh impulse will be given by the publication of this book to the study of the Geographical Distribution of Species. Collectors of Beetles, Butterflies, Shells, and Fossils may derive some useful hints by its perusal and thus direct their studies, so as to add, by accuracy in observation, to our knowledge of the former geographical revolutions which have moulded our islands and continents. To geographers, a survey of some of the more important changes in the distribution of land and water in past times based upon the composition of our fauna will be interesting. The subject, however, is a complex one. I have ventured to indicate a suitable method of treatment, and as such this attempt to elucidate the history of the European fauna should be received.

This work was written as the outcome of a paper published in the Proceedings of the Royal Irish Academy (3rd series, vol. iv., 1897), "On the Origin of the European Fauna." A summary of that paper appeared in Nature (vol. lvi., 1897), and fuller extracts of more important parts, with some criticisms, in the Geological Magazine (N.S., sec. iv., vol. iv., 1897). I freely acknowledge the value of these criticisms, which have largely assisted me to amplify and to improve upon the ideas laid down in the paper.

I have found that it greatly facilitates comprehension of the arguments used, to give a few maps indicating in a general way the extent of former seas and continents. I may in this way, as Mr. Kendall has pointed out, have submerged many square miles of land which had never been covered by the sea, at least not within recent geological times, but the maps were intended as illustrations of my views in a broad spirit only.

Some zoologists may be surprised that, in some cases, I have not followed the latest views in revised nomenclature. I felt that in a work of this kind it was of supreme importance to employ names still current in our leading text books, such as Lepus variabilis for the Mountain Hare, instead of Lepus timidus . After each chapter I have endeavoured to give a short summary of contents, while a bibliography of the principal works and papers consulted will be found at the end. I should also acknowledge the aid which I have received from such excellent works of reference as the British Museum Catalogues of Birds, by Dr... Continue reading book >>




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