Cover image for Elephants
Shoshani, Jeheskel.
Revised edition.
Publication Information:
New York : Checkmark Books, [2000]

Physical Description:
240 pages : illustrations (some color), color maps ; 32 cm
General Note:
"A Weldon Owen production"--T.p. verso.
Subject Term:
Added Author:
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
QL737.P98 E445 2000 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks-Oversize

On Order



Photographs and detailed illustrations combine with text to trace the evolution of the African and Asian elephant from their earliest ancestors. The volume discusses their physiology and behaviour including feeding habits, social interactions, reproduction and migration.

Reviews 2

Library Journal Review

Editor Shoshani has collected a wide variety of expert authors--in fact, more than 30--to present this very fine addition to the spate of elephant books. Unlike the others, this volume covers elephant evolution and biology in far more detail, discussing early relatives such as the mastodon and mammoth. The experts have contributed informative essays on birth, communications, and other aspects of behavior and environment. A section on elephants and humans covers topics such as the use of the animals in war, work, and entertainment. A section on conservation and management includes contrasting viewpoints on culling current elephant populations and gratifying information on the crumbling ivory trade. Providing perspective, depth, and facts, this highly recommended volume will also be an especially useful companion to any of the more pictorial and less encyclopedic works by Boyd Norton ( The African Elephant: Last Days of Eden , LJ 11/1/91), Ronald Orenstein (ed., Elephants: The Deciding Decade , LJ 11/15/91), or Roger L. DeSilvestro ( The African Elephant: Twilight in Eden , LJ 12/91).-- Nancy Moeckel, Miami Univ. Libs., Oxford, Ohio (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Choice Review

This revised multiauthored edition broadly covers the biology and conservation of Asian and African elephants in a format that is accessible to most readers. Its many short chapters are easily digested and profusely illustrated with beautiful photographs and informative tables and line drawings. An inordinately large number of chapters (almost one-third) are authored by the book's editor, but other authors include a host of well-known experts. The book's first half describes many fascinating aspects of elephant behavior and includes a wealth of information on the evolution of elephants. Later chapters focus on elephants in captivity and (briefly) their impact on human culture. Finally, a detailed analysis of modern elephant conservation efforts focuses primarily on Africa, but it includes some information on the status of Asian elephants. This book is not intended to be a scholarly work; there is only a meager bibliography with few references to primary literature, and sprinkled throughout the book are anecdotal descriptions of zoo programs and personal interactions with elephants. Even so, this book is an interesting and broad consideration of a fascinating group of animals that has a profound impact on both the environment and human thought. General readers. M. S. Grace; Florida Institute of Technology

Table of Contents

Richard M. LawsJeheskel Shoshani and Sandra Lee ShoshaniJeheskel ShoshaniJeheskel ShoshaniJeheskel Shoshani and Pascal TassyEdwin H. ColbertJeheskel ShoshaniJerold M. LowensteinLarry D. AgenbroadJeheskel ShoshaniViktor M. MikhelsonLucia Caloi and Maria Rita PalomboJeheskel Shoshani and Daniel C. FisherJeheskel ShoshaniDhriti K. Lahiri-ChoudhuryP. S. EasaJoyce H. PooleMichael J. SchmidtNicholas GeorgiadisS. Keith EltringhamCynthia MossDaphne SheldrickKatherine B. Payne and William R. Langbauer, Jr.S. Keith EltringhamIan M. RedmondPhilip J. ViljoenJeheskel Shoshani and John F. EisenbergJeheskel ShoshaniKenneth C. WylieJeffrey A. McNeelyKes Hillman SmithBucky SteeleJeffrey A. McNeelyMary Ann OwensSandra Lee ShoshaniJ. C. DanielYang DehuaIain Douglas-HamiltonC. Dale TuttleJohn LehnhardtAnthony J. Hall-MartinIan M. RedmondEsmond Bradley MartinRonald OrensteinAnthony C. BeilensonRichard E. LeakeySylvia K. SikesJeheskel ShoshaniJeheskel Shoshani
Forewordp. 10
Evolution and Biology
What Is an Elephant?p. 14
The Elephant's Relativesp. 16
Evolution of the Proboscideap. 18
Classifying Elephantsp. 22
My Experiences with the Late Henry Fairfield Osbornp. 34
Comparing the Living Elephantsp. 36
Probing Prehistoric Proteinsp. 52
The Mammoth Site of Hot Springs, South Dakota, USAp. 54
Comparing Mammoths and Mastodonsp. 56
Cloning Mammothsp. 58
Dwarf Elephants of the Pastp. 60
Extinction of the Elephant's "Ancestors"p. 64
Anatomy and Physiologyp. 66
Musth in Indian Elephant Lorep. 82
Musth in Asian Elephantsp. 85
Musth in African Elephantsp. 87
The Elephant Beneath the Maskp. 92
Population Genetics of African Elephantsp. 98
Longevity and Mortalityp. 99
Behavior and Environment
Elephant Calves: the Story of Two Sexesp. 106
Raising Orphaned African Elephantsp. 114
Elephant Communicationp. 116
Ecology and Behaviorp. 124
Erosion by Elephantsp. 128
The Desert Elephants of Namibiap. 131
Intelligence and Survivalp. 134
Elephant Migrationp. 138
Elephants and Humans
Elephants Used as War Machinesp. 146
Elephants as Beasts of Burdenp. 149
The Elephant Domestication Centre of Africap. 152
Training Elephantsp. 155
Elephants in Folklore, Religion and Artp. 158
The Elephant as Symbolp. 166
Famous Elephantsp. 168
Conservation and Management
The Asian Elephant Population Todayp. 174
The Status of Elephants in Chinap. 176
The African Elephant Population Todayp. 178
Elephants in Captivityp. 184
A Nutritious Diet For a Captive Elephantp. 190
The Question of Cullingp. 194
Alternatives to Cullingp. 200
The Rise and Fall of the Ivory Marketp. 202
The 1989 CITES Meeting in Lausanne, Switzerland, and Its Aftermathp. 208
United States Politics and Elephant Conservationp. 210
A Wildlife Director's Perspectivep. 214
Memories of African Elephantsp. 218
Why Save Elephants?p. 226
Epitomep. 230
Frequently Asked Questionsp. 232
Bibliographyp. 235
Acknowledgementsp. 236
Indexp. 237