Back from the Collapse

American Prairie and the Restoration of Great Plains Wildlife

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Pub Date 01 Jul 2023 | Archive Date 30 Jun 2023

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Description

Back from the Collapse is a clarion call for restoring one of North America’s most underappreciated and overlooked ecosystems: the grasslands of the Great Plains. This region has been called America’s Serengeti in recognition of its historically extraordinary abundance of wildlife. Since Euro-American colonization, however, populations of at least twenty-four species of Great Plains wildlife have collapsed—from pallid sturgeon and burrowing owls to all major mammals, including bison and grizzly bears. In response to this incalculable loss, Curtis H. Freese and other conservationists founded American Prairie, a nonprofit organization with the mission of supporting the region’s native wildlife by establishing a 3.2-million-acre reserve on the plains of eastern Montana, one of the most intact and highest-priority areas for biodiversity conservation in the Great Plains.

In Back from the Collapse Freese explores the evolutionary history of the region’s ecosystem over millions of years, as it transitioned from subtropical forests to the edge of an ice sheet to today’s prairies. He details the eventual species collapse and American Prairie’s work to restore the habitat and wildlife, efforts described by National Geographic as “one of the most ambitious conservation projects in American history.”
Back from the Collapse is a clarion call for restoring one of North America’s most underappreciated and overlooked ecosystems: the grasslands of the Great Plains. This region has been called...

Advance Praise

“Grasslands are crucial to Earth’s biological diversity. North America once had a bounteous share. No one is better qualified to tell the story of such prairie ecosystems—the disruption of their dynamics, the collapse of their wildlife populations, and the vital possibility of saving and restoring them—than Curt Freese. This is an important, fascinating book.”—David Quammen, author of The Tangled Tree and Breathless

“Curt Freese brings our nation’s ecologically rich but too-long-overlooked grasslands into sharp focus. He delivers a well-researched and approachably written account of the collapse of Great Plains wildlife populations and a challenge to readers—to envision the role that large protected areas can play in biodiversity conservation, especially in the face of climate change.”—Alison Piper Fox, chief executive officer of American Prairie    

“Grasslands are crucial to Earth’s biological diversity. North America once had a bounteous share. No one is better qualified to tell the story of such prairie ecosystems—the disruption of their...


Available Editions

EDITION Other Format
ISBN 9781496231321
PRICE $26.95 (USD)
PAGES 376

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Featured Reviews

This is not a book you read if you want a lighthearted, fun, easy read. Back from the Collapse tackles the history and the degradation of the Northern Great Plains. With his extensive background in land management, conservation, and wildlife, Freeze offers expert opinions on conservation and restoration.

Thank you for the opportunity to read and review Back from the Collapse. I believe we all need to do better for this beautiful Earth.

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