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The National Academy of Sciences was chartered by Congress in 1863 as a private, nonprofit organization dedicated to the furtherance of science and engineering for the public welfare. In 1916 the National Research Council was organized, enabling the Academy to draw upon the entire American scientific and technical community in the pursuit of its mandate to provide independent advice to the nation on critical scientific and technical questions.

The Smithsonian Institution was created by act of Congress in 1846 in accordance with the will of the Englishman, James Smithson, who in 1826 bequeathed his property to the United States of America, “to found at Washington, under the name of the Smithsonian Institution, an establishment for the increase and diffusion of knowledge among men.” The Smithsonian has since evolved into an institution devoted to public education, research and national service in the arts, sciences and history. This independent federal establishment is the world’s largest museum complex and is responsible for public and scholarly activities, exhibitions and research projects nationwide and overseas.

The National Forum on BioDiversity was developed by the Board on Basic Biology of the National Research Council’s Commission on Life Sciences and by the Smithsonian Institution’s Directorate of International Activities.

The views expressed in this book are solely those of the individual authors and are not necessarily the views of the National Academy of Sciences or of the Smithsonian Institution.

Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data

National Forum on Biodiversity (1986: Washington, D.C.)

Biodiversity/Edward O.Wilson, editor, Frances M.Peter, associate editor,

p. cm.

“Papers from the National Forum on BioDiversity held September 21–25, 1986, in Washington, D.C., under the cosponsorship of the National Academy of Sciences and the Smithsonian Institution.”

Includes index.

ISBN 0-309-03783-2. ISBN 0-309-03739-5 (pbk.)

1. Biological diversity conservation—Congresses. 2. Biological diversity—Congresses. I. Wilson, Edward Osborne, 1929–II. Peter, Frances M. III. National Academy of Sciences (U.S.) IV. Smithsonian Institution. V. Title.

QH75.A1N32 1986

333.7’2–dc19

First Printing, March 1988

Second Printing, May 1988

Third Printing, October 1988

Fourth Printing, May 1989

Fifth Printing, September 1989

Sixth Printing, May 1990

Seventh Printing, November 1990

Eighth Printing, August 1991

Ninth Printing, March 1992

Tenth Printing, January 1993

Eleventh Printing, January 1994

Twelfth Printing, April 1995

Thirteenth Printing, October 1996

Fourteenth Printing, February 1999

Copyright © 1988 by the National Academy of Sciences

No part of this book may be reproduced by any mechanical, photographic, or electronic process, or in the form of a phonographic recording, nor may it be stored in a retrieval system, transmitted, or otherwise copied for public or private use without written permission from the publisher, except for the purposes of official use by the U.S. government.

Printed in the United States of America



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