Ecological Geography of the Sea


  • Alan Longhurst, Galerie l'Academie, Cajarc, France

This book presents an in-depth discussion of the biological and ecological geography of the oceans. It synthesizes locally restricted studies of the ocean to generate a global geography of the vast marine world.Based on patterns of algal ecology, the book divides the ocean into four primary compartments, which are then subdivided into secondary compartments.
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Faculty, researchers and graduate students interested in oceanography, marine biology, marine ecology, and other marine sciences. Sometimes used as an undergrad text though not written specifically for this purpose.


Book information

  • Published: September 2006
  • ISBN: 978-0-12-455521-1


Pre-Publication comments on the 2nd edition: "It has all the elements that made the first edition such a wonderful book to have and to read. There are too few books like this on the market, which build on a life-time's experience and knowledge in order to say something quite unique and challenging about the oceans. It will be useful for all of those involved with managing the world's oceans, providing for the only rigorous schematic framework available for exploring the heterogeity of the seas and its resources." --Dave Raffaelli, Professor of Environmental Science, University of York

Table of Contents

PrefaceCh. 1 Towards an Ecological Geography of the Sea- Progressive exploration of oceanic and shelfecosystems- The availability of timely global data from satellites- Internal dynamics of satellite-observed algal bloomsCh.2 Changing views of how marine ecosystems function-From pristine to modified ecosystems-Our new understanding of the role of very small organismsCh.3 Biogeographic Data in Ecological Analysis-Taxonomic diversity, the shifting base-line of biogeography- The useful results from 150 years of marine biogeography*Biogeographic regions of the pelagos*Benthis and demersal biogeography*The benthic paradox and polar reproductive strategyCh.4 Ocean fronts and other ecological discontinuities-Fronts and frontal systems*Oceanic fronts*Shelf-edge and upwelling fronts*River plumes and tidal fronts of shelf seas*The ubiquitous 'horizontal front' at the shallow pycnocline*The oceanic eddy-fieldCh. 5 Physical Forcing of Phytoplankton Production-Stratification and mixing in the open ocean-Regional and latitudinal resistance to mixing in the open ocean-Rule-based models of ecological response to external forcing-The ecological consequenses of the global field of mesoscale eddies-Geological, sedimentary and tidal forcing of shallow-sea ecosystemsCh.6 Nutriend Limitation: The Example of Iron-Nutrient distribution, differing supply ratios to euphotic zone-Regional anomalies in nutrient limitation of phytoplankton growth-Simulation of nutrient limitation: Conflicting indicationsCh.7 Biomes: The Primary Compartments-The four primary biomes of the upper ocean*Polar biome*Westerlies biome*Trades biome*Coastal biomeCh.8 Provinces: The Secondary Partition-Ecological provinces in the open ocean-Ways of testing province boundaries in the open ocean*A stastistical test*Analytical tests*A biogeographic test-Practical and useful partitions in coastal seasCh. 9 Longer term responses: From Seasons to Centuries-Scales of external forcing-Recurrent ENSO-scale changes of state-Multi-decadal trends and changes-Conclusion: A partition for a variable ocean?Ch.10 The Atlantic OceanCh.11 The Indian OceanCh.12 The Pacific OceanCh.13 The Southern Ocean