Buccaneer (Ned Yorke, Book 1) by Dudley Pope

By Dudley Pope

It's the 1650s and Spain considers the Caribbean to be its personal inner most sea. yet England, Holland, and France conspire to conflict for freedom at the oceans set in days suffering from the plunder of piracy. Ned Yorke, a faithful Royalist residing in Barbados, has a small vessel and committed team and jointly they sail, hunted by way of Roundheads and Spaniards, decided to pay regardless of the cost for freedom from tyranny. What transpires is a colourful, dramatic retelling of ancient occasions surrounding the seize of Jamaica and the notorious raid on Santiago.

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And although some zoologists have suggested that the living clouded leopard of South Asia qualifies as an incipient form of sabertooth because of its long canines, the similarities between sabertooths and this extant felid are limited and rather superficial. The history of sabertooths spans an enormous length of geological time. Although the latest species, such as the famous Smilodon fatalis from Rancho la Brea, disappeared “only” ten thousand years ago, the earliest mammalian sabertooths lived some 50 million years ago (or Ma) in the Eocene of North America.

Therapsid sabertooths were obviously predatory too, but – unlike other sabertooths – they lacked any substantial dentition behind their canines, and they would have swallowed large chunks of meat whole, in truly reptilian fashion. Other groups of mammals have developed elongated upper canines, more or less like sabers in appearance, but their function is related to display, defense, intraspecific aggression, or the manipulation of food items, rather than the hunting of large prey. Therefore, these creatures – including the extant musk deer, chevrotains, and walruses, as well as the bizarre, Sabertooth vaguely rhino-like uintatheres of the American Eocene – do not qualify as sabertooths.

34 the carcasses of the first victims started a “chain reaction” of carnivore trappings, so this is not a carnivore trap in the full sense. Incarcal Another site that may have operated partly as a carnivore trap is Incarcal, in Girona, in northeastern Spain. This is a complex of karst cavities (nine cavities are currently known) in Pliocene lacustrine limestone filled with fossiliferous sediments. Similar cavities, or sinkholes, exist today in the vicinity of Lake Banyoles, not far from Incarcal, and they fill up when the water table is high.

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