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Fundamentals of Ecosystem Science provides a compact and comprehensive introduction to modern ecosystem science.
This book covers major concepts of ecosystem science, biogeochemistry, and energetics. It addresses, contrasts, and compares both terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems. It combines general lessons, concepts, frameworks, and challenges in highly accessible synthesis chapters. It presents firsthand case studies, written by leaders in the field, offering personal insights into how adopting an ecosystem approach led to innovations, new understanding, management changes, and policy solutions.
This book is ideal for advanced undergraduate and graduate students who have had a general biology course, but not further training in ecosystems as well as researchers and professionals in ecology and environmental sciences.
- Addresses, contrasts, and compares both terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems
- Combines general lessons, concepts, frameworks, and challenges in highly accessible synthesis chapters
- Presents firsthand case studies, written by leaders in the field, offering personal insights into how adopting an ecosystem approach led to innovations, new understanding, management changes, and policy solutions
Advanced undergraduate and graduate students who have had a general biology course, but not further training in ecosystems. Researchers and professionals in ecology and environmental sciences
Chapter 1. Introduction to Ecosystem Science
What is an Ecosystem?
What are the Properties of Ecosystems?
Why Do Scientists Study Ecosystems?
How Do Ecosystem Scientists Learn about Ecosystems?
From There to Here: A Short History of the Ecosystem Concept in Theory and Practice
Section II. Ecological Energetics
Units used in Studies of Ecological Energetics
Chapter 2. Primary Production: The Foundation of Ecosystems
Components of Primary Production
Measuring Primary Production
Regulation of Primary Production
Rates and Patterns of Primary Production
Fates of Primary Production
A Tale of Scale
References for Table 2.1
Chapter 3. Secondary Production and Consumer Energetics
Definition of Secondary Production
Methods to Estimate Secondary Production
Controls and Prediction of Secondary Production
Production of an Individual Species of Consumer
Production of a Guild of Consumers
Production of the Entire Community of Consumers
Chapter 4. Organic Matter Decomposition
Decomposition of Plant-Derived Particulate Matter
Organisms Responsible for Decomposition
Controls on Decomposition
Interactions with Other Element Cycles
Chapter 5. Element Cycling
What is an Element Cycle?
The Importance of Chemical Properties
Move, Stick, and Change: A Simple Framework for Elemental Cycling
What Kinds of Questions are Associated with Element Cycles?
Some Characteristics Important for Understanding an Element’s Role in Ecosystems
Chapter 6. The Carbon Cycle: With a Brief Introduction to Global Biogeochemistry
Why Study the Carbon Cycle?
Biogeochemistry of Carbon
The Carbon Atom and Its Chemistry
The Present-Day Global Carbon Cycle and the Greenhouse Effect
The Holocene PreIndustrial Global Carbon Budget
The Carbon Cycle in Selected Ecosystems
Chapter 7. The Nitrogen Cycle
The Global Picture
Nitrogen Cycle Processes
Nitrogen Cycling in Terrestrial Ecosystems
Nitrogen Cycling in Aquatic Ecosystems
Nitrogen Balances: The Enigma of Missing Nitrogen
Chapter 8. The Phosphorus Cycle
The Importance of Phosphorus in Terrestrial Ecosystems
The Importance of Phosphorus in Agricultural Ecosystems
The Importance of Phosphorus in Aquatic Ecosystems
The Global Phosphorus Cycle
Human Alteration of the Global Phosphorus Cycle
The Phosphorus Cycle at the Watershed Scale
The Phosphorus Cycle at the Local Scale
Managing Human Interaction with the Phosphorus Cycle
Section IV. Synthesis
Chapter 9. Revisiting the Ecosystem Concept: Important Features That Promote Generality and Understanding
Budgets and Boundaries
Inclusiveness and Flexibility
Generality and Prediction
Chapter 10. Ecosystems in a Heterogeneous World
The Nature of Heterogeneity
Toward A Framework for Space and Time Heterogeneity
Internal and External Heterogeneity
First Principles for Assessing Heterogeneity
Conclusions: Ecosystems in Time and Space
Chapter 11. Controls on Ecosystem Structure and Function
What Do We Mean by “Control”?
Why Do We Care about Controls on Ecosystems?
How Are Ecosystems Controlled?
Section V. Case Studies
Chapter 12. From Global Environmental Change to Sustainability Science: Ecosystem Studies in the Yaqui Valley, Mexico
The Yaqui Valley Case Study
Lessons from the Yaqui Valley Ecosystems Study
Chapter 13. Ecology of Lyme Disease
It’s the Deer
Chapter 14. Understanding Ecosystem Effects of Dams
Chapter 15. Acid Rain
Chapter 16. Streams and Their Valleys
Chapter 17. Frontiers in Ecosystem Science
Pressures and Pace of Environmental Change
The Changing Culture of Science
Appendix. A Primer on Biologically Mediated Redox Reactions in Ecosystems
- No. of pages:
- © Academic Press 2012
- 5th December 2012
- Academic Press
- Paperback ISBN:
- eBook ISBN:
Dr. Kathleen C. Weathers is the G. Evelyn Hutchinson Chair in Ecology at the Cary Institute of Ecosystem Studies.
Cary Institute of Ecosystem Studies, Millbrook, NY, USA
Dr. David L. Strayer is a Distinguished Senior Scientist Emeritus at the Cary Institute of Ecosystem Studies.
Cary Institute of Ecosystem Studies, Millbrook, NY, USA
Dr. Gene E. Likens is President Emeritus and Distinguished Senior Scientist at the Cary Institute of Ecosystem Studies, and a Distinguished Research Professor at the University of Connecticut, Storrs
Distinguished Senior Scientist, Cary Institute of Ecosystem Studies, Millbrook, NY, USA
"Highly recommended as a textbook, Fundamentals is certain to delight the reader with striking stories on the connection between habitat fragmentation and Lyme disease, and other intriguing examples that leave us marveling at the complexity of ecological interactions and remind us why we choose to work in this field." --The Journal of Wildlife Management, 2014
"Via multiple approaches (e.g., experimental, theoretical, cross-system comparisons), contributors discuss the energetics and biochemical branches of this rapidly evolving science, and present case studies illustrating how ecosystem science can identify and control problems in diverse ecosystems." --Reference and Research Book News, 2013
"I have been searching for a book like this for my ecosystem ecology class. The tone is right-on-target, the examples are apropos, and it is clear that these chapters are written for students as opposed to researchers, which is a significant plus." --Dr. Robert Hall, University of Wyoming
"I found the chapters in Fundamentals of Ecosystem Science to be well-organized and well-written. Students and teachers alike respond well to them. The level of detail is about right (not too dense), and the subject matter is presented in an interesting and engaging way." --Dr. Clifford Ochs, University of Mississippi
"The book is very readable and engaging, and it communicates both a general understanding of the topics and current state of the knowledge. The incorporation of both terrestrial and aquatic systems is a great contribution since most ecosystem science textbooks are focused on terrestrial or aquatic systems." --Dr. Mary Arthur, University of Kentucky
"A refreshing approach that includes specific methods, examples and perspectives from both aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems. It provides timely and motivating syntheses of concepts and approaches for addressing current challenges to earth's ecosystem functions." --Dr. Amy Rosemond, Odum School of Ecology, University of Georgia
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