Dunwoody Pond: Reflections on the High Plains Wetlands and the Cultivation of Naturalists
U of Nebraska Press, 1 mars 2001 - 297 pages
In a small and—to the untrained eye—unimpressive pond, microscopic life abounds, breeding myriad mysteries. Indeed, the mysteries ripple well beyond the pond's edge, where budding scientists stoop over their specimens, and one question in particular intrigues John Janovy: What makes these otherwise normal young people want to study parasites? The parasites that Janovy peers at in Dunwoody Pond, living their intricate lives on or in beetles, damselflies, frogs, toads, fish, and tiny crustaceans, are no less interesting and involved than the lives of the young scientists he observes in their pursuit of these microorganisms.
An exploration of a small farm pond in Nebraska, the creatures that inhabit it, and the people who study them, this engaging book captures the spirit of scientific inquiry at its source. Janovy, a celebrated scientist, naturalist, and teacher, introduces us to five of his most gifted students at critical junctures in their scientific careers. As we watch these young people at work and learn about the fascinating microscopic universe that preoccupies them, we also learn firsthand about the curiosity, wonder, and excitement that animate scientific practice. As closely observed and warmly written as all of John Janovy's works, Dunwoody Pond is, above all, a highly original and insightful meditation on the nature of science itself.