The Unified Neutral Theory of Biodiversity and Biogeography MPB 32

Author: Stephen P. Hubbell
Publisher: Princeton University Press
ISBN: 9781400837526
Format: PDF, Mobi
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Despite its supreme importance and the threat of its global crash, biodiversity remains poorly understood both empirically and theoretically. This ambitious book presents a new, general neutral theory to explain the origin, maintenance, and loss of biodiversity in a biogeographic context. Until now biogeography (the study of the geographic distribution of species) and biodiversity (the study of species richness and relative species abundance) have had largely disjunct intellectual histories. In this book, Stephen Hubbell develops a formal mathematical theory that unifies these two fields. When a speciation process is incorporated into Robert H. MacArthur and Edward O. Wilson's now classical theory of island biogeography, the generalized theory predicts the existence of a universal, dimensionless biodiversity number. In the theory, this fundamental biodiversity number, together with the migration or dispersal rate, completely determines the steady-state distribution of species richness and relative species abundance on local to large geographic spatial scales and short-term to evolutionary time scales. Although neutral, Hubbell's theory is nevertheless able to generate many nonobvious, testable, and remarkably accurate quantitative predictions about biodiversity and biogeography. In many ways Hubbell's theory is the ecological analog to the neutral theory of genetic drift in genetics. The unified neutral theory of biogeography and biodiversity should stimulate research in new theoretical and empirical directions by ecologists, evolutionary biologists, and biogeographers.

Ecological Niches

Author: Jonathan M. Chase
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
ISBN: 9780226101804
Format: PDF, ePub, Docs
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Why do species live where they live? What determines the abundance and diversity of species in a given area? What role do species play in the functioning of entire ecosystems? All of these questions share a single core concept—the ecological niche. Although the niche concept has fallen into disfavor among ecologists in recent years, Jonathan M. Chase and Mathew A. Leibold argue that the niche is an ideal tool with which to unify disparate research and theoretical approaches in contemporary ecology. Chase and Leibold define the niche as including both what an organism needs from its environment and how that organism's activities shape its environment. Drawing on the theory of consumer-resource interactions, as well as its graphical analysis, they develop a framework for understanding niches that is flexible enough to include a variety of small- and large-scale processes, from resource competition, predation, and stress to community structure, biodiversity, and ecosystem function. Chase and Leibold's synthetic approach will interest ecologists from a wide range of subdisciplines.

Species Diversity in Space and Time

Author: Michael L. Rosenzweig
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
ISBN: 9780521499521
Format: PDF, ePub
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Species diversity is marked by some interesting facts--such as larger areas have more species, and diversity is particularly high near the equator. Other factors to consider are what reduces diversity in ecologically productive places and across what scales of space and time diversity patterns hold. This book examines these questions and many others, the author employing both theory and data in his search for answers. Surprisingly, many of the questions have reasonably likely answers. By identifying these, attention can be turned toward life's many still-unexplained diversity patterns. As evolutionary ecologists race to understand biodiversity before it is too late, this book will help set the agenda for diversity research into the next century and will be useful to graduate students and researchers in ecology and evolutionary and conservation biology.

Biodiversity and Biogeographic Patterns in Asia Pacific Region I Statistical Methods and Case Studies

Author: Youhua Chen
Publisher: Bentham Science Publishers
ISBN: 168108015X
Format: PDF, ePub
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This brief book is dedicated to the quantitative analyses and systematic discussion of spatial biodiversity and biogeographic patterns in the Asia‐pacific region comprised of China, India and adjacent countries. The book is split into two sections. The first section presents readers with detailed statistical methods to conduct spatial macro‐biodiversity and biogeography analyses. Step-by-step instructions on how to perform these statistical methods by using the statistical program R are also provided. In the second part, different quantitative case studies are presented covering several topics, including phylogenetics, spatial statistics, multivariate statistics and ecological genomics. Each case study concludes with a detailed interpretation of the quantitative results and how these results are relevant to local and regional ecological processes. This reference is suitable for academics interested in biostatistics biodiversity and ecological studies specific to the Asia Pacific region and China.

Spatial Ecology

Author: David Tilman
Publisher: Princeton University Press
ISBN: 9780691016528
Format: PDF, ePub
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Spatial Ecology addresses the fundamental effects of space on the dynamics of individual species and on the structure, dynamics, diversity, and stability of multispecies communities. Although the ecological world is unavoidably spatial, there have been few attempts to determine how explicit considerations of space may alter the predictions of ecological models, or what insights it may give into the causes of broad-scale ecological patterns. As this book demonstrates, the spatial structure of a habitat can fundamentally alter both the qualitative and quantitative dynamics and outcomes of ecological processes. Spatial Ecology highlights the importance of space to five topical areas: stability, patterns of diversity, invasions, coexistence, and pattern generation. It illustrates both the diversity of approaches used to study spatial ecology and the underlying similarities of these approaches. Over twenty contributors address issues ranging from the persistence of endangered species, to the maintenance of biodiversity, to the dynamics of hosts and their parasitoids, to disease dynamics, multispecies competition, population genetics, and fundamental processes relevant to all these cases. There have been many recent advances in our understanding of the influence of spatially explicit processes on individual species and on multispecies communities. This book synthesizes these advances, shows the limitations of traditional, non-spatial approaches, and offers a variety of new approaches to spatial ecology that should stimulate ecological research.

Species Diversity in Ecological Communities

Author: Robert E. Ricklefs
Publisher: Barron's Educational Series
ISBN: 9780226718231
Format: PDF, Kindle
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A pioneering work, Species Diversity in Ecological Communities looks at biodiversity in its broadest geographical and historical contexts. For many decades, ecologists have studied only small areas over short time spans in the belief that diversity is regulated by local ecological interactions. However, to understand fully how communities come to have the diversity they do, and to properly address urgent conservation problems, scientists must consider global patterns of species richness and the historical events that shape both regional and local communities. The authors use new theoretical developments, analyses, and case studies to explore the large-scale mechanisms that generate and maintain diversity. Case studies of various regions and organisms consider how local and regional processes interact to determine patterns of species richness. The contributors emphasize the fact that ecological processes acting quickly on a local scale do not erase the effects of regional and historical events that occur more slowly and less frequently. This book compels scientists to rethink the foundations of community ecology and sets the stage for further research using comparative, experimental, geographical, and historical data.

Rangeland Systems

Author: David D. Briske
Publisher: Springer
ISBN: 3319467093
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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This book is open access under a CC BY-NC 2.5 license. This book provides an unprecedented synthesis of the current status of scientific and management knowledge regarding global rangelands and the major challenges that confront them. It has been organized around three major themes. The first summarizes the conceptual advances that have occurred in the rangeland profession. The second addresses the implications of these conceptual advances to management and policy. The third assesses several major challenges confronting global rangelands in the 21st century. This book will compliment applied range management textbooks by describing the conceptual foundation on which the rangeland profession is based. It has been written to be accessible to a broad audience, including ecosystem managers, educators, students and policy makers. The content is founded on the collective experience, knowledge and commitment of 80 authors who have worked in rangelands throughout the world. Their collective contributions indicate that a more comprehensive framework is necessary to address the complex challenges confronting global rangelands. Rangelands represent adaptive social-ecological systems, in which societal values, organizations and capacities are of equal importance to, and interact with, those of ecological processes. A more comprehensive framework for rangeland systems may enable management agencies, and educational, research and policy making organizations to more effectively assess complex problems and develop appropriate solutions.

Modern Topics in the Phototrophic Prokaryotes

Author: Patrick Hallenbeck
Publisher: Springer
ISBN: 331946261X
Format: PDF, Docs
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This book offers authoritative contributions by world experts actively working on different aspects of phototrophic prokaryotes. Providing up-to-date information in this rapidly advancing field, it covers the range of topics that are currently the focus of research with this group of organisms. As essentially single-celled organisms, phototrophic prokaryotes process many environmental signals and use this information to optimize their metabolism, growth rate, DNA replication and cell division. Phototrophic prokaryotes are collectively of great interest for a number of different fundamental and applied perspectives and have long served as models for understanding such basic fundamental biological processes as photosynthesis and respiration. On an ecological/environmental level they are extremely important, being the most abundant photosynthetic organisms on earth and responsible for the majority of the primary productivity in the oceans. They also hold great promise as biotechnological catalysts, being able to couple solar energy conversion through photosynthesis and carbon fixation to the production of biofuels, commodity chemicals and neutraceuticals. The book is recommended to advanced students and scientists dealing with life sciences, especially in genetics, microbiology and molecular biology.

Concepts and Values in Biodiversity

Author: Dirk Lanzerath
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1135106274
Format: PDF, Mobi
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Biodiversity may refer to the diversity of genes, species or ecosystems in general. These varying concepts of biodiversity occasionally lead to conflicts among researchers and policy makers, as each of them require a customized type of protection strategy. This book addresses the questions surrounding the merits of conserving an existing situation, evolutionary development or the intentional substitution of one genome, species or ecosystem for another. Any practical steps towards the protection of biodiversity demand a definition of that which is to be protected and, in turn, the motivations for protecting biodiversity. Is biodiversity a necessary model which is also useful, or does it carry intrinsic value? Debates like this are particularly complex when interested parties address it from different conceptual and moral perspectives. Comprised of three parts, each complemented by a short introductory paragraph, this collection presents a variety of approaches to this challenge. The chapters cover the perspectives of environmental scientists with expertise in evolutionary, environmental biology, systematic zoology and botany, as well as those of researchers with expertise in philosophy, ethics, politics, law and economics. This combination facilitates a truly interdisciplinary debate by highlighting hitherto unacknowledged implications that inform current academic and political debates on biodiversity and its protection. The book should be of interest to students and researchers of environment studies, biodiversity, environmental philosophy, ethics and management.

Ecosystem Services Biodiversity and Environmental Change in a Tropical Mountain Ecosystem of South Ecuador

Author: Jörg Bendix
Publisher: Springer Science & Business Media
ISBN: 3642381375
Format: PDF, Docs
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An interdisciplinary research unit consisting of 30 teams in the natural, economic and social sciences analyzed biodiversity and ecosystem services of a mountain rainforest ecosystem in the hotspot of the tropical Andes, with special reference to past, current and future environmental changes. The group assessed ecosystem services using data from ecological field and scenario-driven model experiments, and with the help of comparative field surveys of the natural forest and its anthropogenic replacement system for agriculture. The book offers insights into the impacts of environmental change on various service categories mentioned in the Millennium Ecosystem Assessment (2005): cultural, regulating, supporting and provisioning ecosystem services. Examples focus on biodiversity of plants and animals including trophic networks, and abiotic/biotic parameters such as soils, regional climate, water, nutrient and sediment cycles. The types of threats considered include land use and climate changes, as well as atmospheric fertilization. In terms of regulating and provisioning services, the emphasis is primarily on water regulation and supply as well as climate regulation and carbon sequestration. With regard to provisioning services, the synthesis of the book provides science-based recommendations for a sustainable land use portfolio including several options such as forestry, pasture management and the practices of indigenous peoples. In closing, the authors show how they integrated the local society by pursuing capacity building in compliance with the CBD-ABS (Convention on Biological Diversity - Access and Benefit Sharing), in the form of education and knowledge transfer for application.