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Integrative biology professors co-publish book

TAMPA, Fla. – Two integrative biology professors from the College of Arts and Sciences have co-published a comprehensive book on North American tortoises.

Earl McCoy, Ph.D. and Henry Mushinsky, Ph.D. of the University of South Florida co-published their book with editor David Rostal, Ph.D. from the Department of Biology at Georgia Southern University. The 208-page book is titled “Biology and Conservation of North American Tortoises.” Their work is the first comprehensive book on North American tortoises, published by Johns Hopkins University Press.

The book covers North American tortoise morphology, taxonomy, systematics, paleontology, physiology and ecology. Tortoises are the longest living terrestrial animals, but the book provides more detailed information including tortoise behavior, reproduction, diet, growth, health and conservation.

The book contains chapters by 33 different authors explaining the expertise and observations of hundreds of skilled researchers. Both USF researchers have studied reptiles throughout their successful careers, with some focus on the Florida gopher tortoise and other local vertebrate animals.

McCoy is the associate chairman of the Department of Integrative Biology at USF. He is also a professor who teaches undergraduate and graduate courses in ecology on topics such as biogeography, biostatistics, conservation and restoration. McCoy’s own research covers additional topics in the areas of disturbance ecology and the philosophical basis of ecology.

Mushinsky is a Kosove Graduate Professor and the graduate director for USF’s Department of Integrative Biology. Along with McCoy and a group of graduate students, Mushinsky directs a research program focused on contemporary ecological issues in Florida with plans to restore upland habitats and perfect management practices that support wildlife.


Filed under: Arts and Sciences Research Integrative Biology  
Author: Jasmin Lankford