No longer content with being thought of as a bunch of game wardens and permit punchers, the California Department of Fish and Game has gone and done something completely unexpected: publish a stunning inventory of California's diverse natural world.
Filled with colorful illustrations (by Outdoors Field Guide's Dugald Stermer) and marvelously detailed graphics and maps, "Atlas of the Biodiversity of California" invites comparisons between maps of the state's resources and of the threats they face.
It's particularly telling, for example, to compare human density maps with biological diversity maps and to imagine the conflicts that arise. Every classroom and library in the state should stock this treasure. Available at www.atlas.dfg.ca.gov.