The Baja California peninsula is home to many forms of life found nowhere else on earth. This, combined with the peninsula's rugged and inaccessible terrain, has made the area one of the last true biological frontiers of North America. L. Lee Grismer is not only the foremost authority on the amphibians and reptiles of Baja California, but also an outstanding photographer. He has produced the most comprehensive work on the herpetofauna of the peninsula and its islands ever published. With its stunning color images, detailed accounts of many little-known species, and descriptions of the region's diverse environment, this is the definitive guide to the amphibians and reptiles of a fascinating and remote region. The culmination of Grismer's quarter century of fieldwork on the Baja peninsula and his exploration of more than one hundred of its islands in the Pacific Ocean and the Sea of Cortes, this book gives information on the identification, distribution, natural history, and taxonomy of each species of amphibian and reptile found there.
Preliminary accounts of the life history of many of the salamanders, frogs, toads, turtles, lizards, and snakes are reported here for the first time, and several species that were almost unknown to science are illustrated in full color. The book also contains new data on species distribution and on the effect of the isolated landscape of the peninsula and its islands on the evolutionary process. Much of the information gathered here is presented in biogeographical overviews that consider the extremely varied environments of Baja California in both a contemporary and a historical framework. An original and important contribution to science, this book will generate further research for years to come as it becomes a benchmark reference for both professionals and amateurs.
L. Lee Grismer is Professor of Biology at La Sierra University.
Foreword, by Harry W. Greene Preface Acknowledgments General introduction 1. Salamanders 2. Frogs and Toads 3. Turtles and Tortoises 4. Lizards 5. Worm Lizards 6. Snakes Appendix A. Insular Species Checklist Appendix B. Claves taxonomicas Glossary Literature Cited Index