National Geographic : 1914 Jul
THE UNIQUE ISLAND OF MOUNT DESERT has lost, or presumably lost, both plants and animals. The location of the island as the play ground, habitual or occasional, of a vast and highly intelligent portion of our population also renders it remarkably appropriate for such a natural reserva tion; and if such a reservation could be established with emphasis laid upon the redevelopment and maintenance of nat ural and indigenous conditions, its influ ence upon the intelligent peoples of America would be far-reaching; for it is inconceivable that lovers of nature could enjoy such an ideal area, with its unmo lested wild flowers, ferns, birds, and mammals, and with the full beauty of nature everywhere displayed, without desiring and providing a similar bless ing-according to the varied opportuni ties that offer-for themselves and their children in other parts of the nation. It is therefore earnestly hoped that those who have it within their power will take the proper steps to insure the pres ervation and true conservation of the area so generously placed at their dis posal. A BOOK OF MONSTERS BY DAVID AND MARIAN FAIRCHILD One year ago the GEOGRAPHIC printed a series of remarkable photographs of "Monsters of Our Back Yards," by David Fairchild. The series of pictures and the article accompanying them aroused so much comment and stimulated such an interest in the study of these important but tiny creatures that the National Geo graphic Society urged Mr. Fairchildto photograph more of these monsters. This he has done, and seven additional photographic enlargements are printed here. For the benefit of those readers who are particularlyinterested in the subject, the Society has arranged for the publication, in book form, of more than a hundred of Mr. Fairchild'spictures of spiders, hornets, wasps, ants, bees, bumblebees, red and black ants, grasshoppers, locusts, cricket-on -the-hearth, cockroach, dragon flies, squash-bug, lantern fly, crane fly, insect hawks, soldier termite, mosquitoes, butterflies and their larva, moths, caterpillars,June-bug, ground beetle, clover-leaf weevil, blister beetle, cucumber beetle, scarab, etc., etc. Each creature photographed is magnified so many times that few details of the external anatomy escape observation; and as one closely examines the pictures, which sound a new note in the layman's study of nature, he is at once interested and amazed at the new world it discloses and cannot help a curious fascination in learning, for instance, of the existence of the delicate antenna which enable the cockroach to fed danger before it is seen, or of the wing-piece music-box with which the male cricket calls to its mate in the grass, and other strange and wonder ful mechanisms of nature which stand out under the powerful microscope. The authors tell the life story of each "monster" they present with a fdelity to fact that satisfies the scientist, and at the same time they have invested each "biography" with a charming touch of human interest which takes the reader off into the wonderland of his dooryard and gives an introduction to a new world second only in importance to our own, when measured by the vast effect it has upon human affairs. The book should be in the hands of every child and adult who would know the wonder world which touches us on every side. As only a limited edition has been printed, those desiring copies should send in their reservations at once on the blank form printed elsewhere in the Magazine.