The Emerald Horizon

The Emerald Horizon

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In The Emerald Horizon, Cornelia Mutel combines lyrical writing with meticulous scientific research to portray the environmental past, present, and future of Iowa. In doing so, she ties all of Iowa's natural features into one comprehensive whole. Since so much of the tallgrass state has been transformed into an agricultural landscape, Mutel focuses on understanding todaya€™s natural environment by understanding yesterdaya€™s changes. After summarizing the geological, archaeological, and ecological features that shaped Iowaa€™s modern landscape, she recreates the once-wild native communities that existed prior to Euroamerican settlement. Next she examines the dramatic changes that overtook native plant and animal communities as Iowaa€™s prairies, woodlands, and wetlands were transformed. Finally she presents realistic techniques for restoring native species and ecological processes as well as a broad variety of ways in which Iowans can reconnect with the natural world. Throughout, in addition to the many illustrations commissioned for this book, she offers careful scientific exposition, a strong sense of respect for the land, and encouragement to protect the future by learning from the past. The a€œemerald prairiea€ that a€œgleamed and shone to the horizona€™s edge, a€ as botanist Thomas Macbride described it in 1895, has vanished. Cornelia Mutela€™s passionate dedication to restoring this damaged landscapea€”and by extension the transformed landscape of the entire Corn Belta€”invigorates her blend of natural history and human history. Believing that citizens who are knowledgeable about native species, communities, and ecological processes will better care for them, she gives us hopea€”and sound suggestionsa€”for the future.several thousand in the 1950s (when deer hunting was reinstituted following a fifty-five-year ban), to an estimated ... Present-day Iowa constitutes ideal deer habitat: a land of abundant food and cover with moderate winter temperatures and snowfall. ... So many deer reproducing rapidly on landscapes dedicated to human use cana#39;t help but mean trouble a€” and indeed ... Iowaa#39;s car-deer collisions cost ananbsp;...

Title:The Emerald Horizon
Author:Cornelia F. Mutel
Publisher:University of Iowa Press - 2008-03-01


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