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Coelacanth (The Living Fossil) -- New Books

A Fish Caught In Time The Search for the Coelacanth by Samantha Weinberg

N-794HB 2001, hardback, 5-5/16 X 8, 240 pages $24.00

The coelacanth (see-lo-canth) is no ordinary fish. Five feet long, with luminescent eyes and limb like fins, this bizarre creature, presumed to be extinct, was discovered in 1938 by an amateur icthyologist who recognized it from fossils dating back 400 million years. The discovery was immediately dubbed the "greatest scientific find of the century," but the excitement that ensued was even more incredible. This is the entrancing story of that most rare and precious fish -- our own great-uncle forty million times removed.

In 1938, an alert young South African museum curator named Marjorie Courtenay-Latimer came upon a curious specimen in a fisherman's nets: a fish with "four limb-like fins and a strange little puppy dog tail," one that she thought resembled not a living being so much as a china ornament. When she...

wpe18.jpg (2135 bytes) N-293 Living Fossil The Story of the Coelacanth By Keith S. Thomson A biologist answers many questions about a unique fish, a species unchanged for 70 million years and a member of the group that gave rise to land vertebrates, a living specimen of which was accidentally discovered only 50 years ago in the Indian Ocean. Drawings. 1991, hardback, 252 pages. $19.95