Ribbon of Sand

by John Alexander (Author), James Lazell (Author)

A look at the history, geography, geology, and ecology of North Carolina’s Outer Banks.

Wind, currents, tides, and sand. Kingsnakes and rice rats. The disappearance of the Lost Colony, the raids of the pirate Blackbeard, and the Wright brothers’ first attempts at flight. The Outer Banks is a place like no other . . .

“Alexander . . . and naturalist Lazell…examine this fragile ecosystem and unravel an evolutionary mystery. Explaining the actions of ocean currents, winds and waves, they show how island contours change, how inlets open and close. They describe the fauna and flora of maritime forests and beaches and search for a rare Ocracoke king snake, sticticeps. Their finding it yields an engrossing story of field science and discloses a remarkable example of relatively recent co-evolution (snake, rice rat, warmyrtle). The authors also chart the changes brought by development of the island. As natural history or as description of barrier islands, this book leaves the reader with a clear sense of place and an understanding of the forces of wind and water.” —Publishers Weekly

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Publication date
April 30, 2021
Page count
Paper ISBN
File size
3 MB