Technologies of Tracking and the Making of Modern Wildlife
Combining approaches from environmental history, the history of science and technology, animal studies, and the cultural and political history of the United States, Etienne Benson traces the radio tracking of wild animals across a wide range of institutions, regions, and species and in a variety of contexts. He explains how hunters, animal-rights activists, and other conservation-minded groups gradually turned tagging from a tool for control into a conduit for connection with wildlife. Drawing on extensive archival research, interviews with wildlife biologists and engineers, and in-depth case studies of specific conservation issues—such as the management of deer, grouse, and other game animals in the upper Midwest and the conservation of tigers and rhinoceroses in Nepal—Benson illuminates telemetry's context-dependent uses and meanings as well as commonalities among tagging practices.
Wired Wilderness traces the evolution of the modern wildlife biologist's field practices and shows how the intense interest of nonscientists at once constrained and benefited the field. Scholars of and researchers involved in wildlife management will find this history both fascinating and revealing.
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"An outstanding survey of how wild animals are tracked and documented."—Midwest Book Review
"A much-needed reminder that human dimensions have influenced and will continue to influence the direction of wildlife conservation, science, and management just as much as changing technologies."—Choice
"A gripping tale of wildlife research in the face of constant aggravation."—Pat Morris, Biological Journal of the Linnean Society
"A fascinating read and will appeal to anyone with an interest in wildlife management or research."—Biological Conservation
"These individual stories provide colour and depth to a unique study of biopolitics in the history of animal tracking."—Sarah Papworth, Oryx
"An important addition to an emerging picture on how and why efforts emerged to keep a pulse on the planet."—Gregg Mitman, Technology and Culture
"An empirically well-grounded study of a technology so defining of an important field of nature management that its publication should be of interest to many people."—Hakon B. Stokland, Icon
"The greatest stength of Wired Wilderness is its extraordinary detail, melding the history of science and technology with environmental history."—Stephen Bocking, Isis
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