Arctic Animals: A Celebration of Survival


159 pages
Contains Illustrations, Bibliography
ISBN 0-7710-1717-0




Reviewed by L.J. Rouse

L.J. Rouse was a freelance writer in Toronto.


What the Inuit call nunassiaq, the beautiful land, has of late attracted the attention both of ruthless seekers of wealth at any cost and of conservationists concerned for the preservation of the delicate balance of the Arctic ecosystem. Once disturbed, as it could be by a major oil spill or the overhunting or overfishing of one species critical to a food chain, the entire system might be thrown into chaos, with incalculable results.

Bruemmer, a specialist in northern natural history, is an excellent writer and a masterful nature photographer. His accounts of animal life in the Arctic, whether of the tundra or the ice floe, of birds, animals or insects, is readable and informative. The balance of nature in the seemingly inhospitable land of brief, hectic summer and almost endless winter, with all the adaptations that such dramatic conditions require of the animal population, inspires respectful awe, and a consciousness of the foolhardiness of any who tamper with such fragile equilibrium.

Once, people believed that the resources of the lands and waters of the north were inexhaustible. We know now how tragically wrong our forbears were, and the irremediable harm they perpetrated. This magnificent study of the wonders of the north, which includes 50 colour and 40 black-and-white photographs, is a plea for conservation, protection, and respect for the fragile ecosystem upon which our own lives and the future of the earth depends.


Bruemmer, Fred, “Arctic Animals: A Celebration of Survival,” Canadian Book Review Annual Online, accessed June 15, 2024,