Dan Flores, Historian/author "American Serengeti"
Air Dates: March 10-12, 2018
This week's guest on REPORT FROM SANTA FE is DAN FLORES, author and historian of cultural and environmental studies of the American West. Flores held the A.B. Hammond Chair in Western History at the University of Montana in Missoula, Montana. He is the award-winning best-selling author of ten books, the last two are "Coyote America" and "American Serengeti."
In this second part of our interview with Dan Flores, the author focuses on his recent book “American Serengeti: The Last Big Animals of the Great Plains," winner of the Stubbendieck Great Plains Distinguished Book Prize
America’s Great Plains once possessed one of the grandest wildlife spectacles of the world, equaled only by such places as the Serengeti, the Masai Mara, or the veld of South Africa. Pronghorn antelope, gray wolves, bison, coyotes, wild horses, and grizzly bears: less than two hundred years ago these creatures existed in such abundance that John James Audubon was moved to write, “it is impossible to describe or even conceive the vast multitudes of these animals.”
In a work that is at once a lyrical evocation of that lost splendor and a detailed natural history of these charismatic species of the historic Great Plains, veteran naturalist and outdoorsman Dan Flores draws a vivid portrait of each of these animals in their glory―and tells the harrowing story of what happened to them at the hands of market hunters and ranchers and ultimately a federal killing program in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries.Written by an author who has done breakthrough work on the histories of several of these animals - including Bison, wild horses, and coyotes - American Serengeti is as rigorous in its research as it is intimate in its sense of wonder―the most deeply informed, closely observed view we have of the Great Plains’ wild heritage.