THE AMPHIBIANS AND REPTILES OF COSTA RICA. Jay M. Savage. 2002. University of Chicago Press, Chicago, Illinois. ISBN 0-226-73537-0. xx + 934 pp. 547 text figs. 516 color photos on 96 color plates. $75.00 (cloth).—This monumental tome subtitled “A herpetofauna between two continents, between two seas” is far more than a herpetofauna of Costa Rica. This is evident from the four parts into which the book is divided: (1) the basics, (2) living amphibians, (3) living reptiles, (4) biogeography and evolution. End material consists of a two-page addendum, a glossary, literature cited, and systematic and subject indices. Interspersed throughout the text, which is in double-column format, are six 16-page signatures of color plates—two maps, 16 photographs of habitats, and 498 photographs of amphibians and reptiles.

“The Basics” contains three chapters. The first, entitled “Discovering a tropical herpetofauna,” contains a variety of subjects that too often are omitted from a book...

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