Geometric Morphometrics for Biologists

2nd Edition

A Primer

Authors: Miriam Zelditch Donald Swiderski H. Sheets
Hardcover ISBN: 9780123869036
eBook ISBN: 9780123869043
Imprint: Academic Press
Published Date: 2nd August 2012
Page Count: 488
Tax/VAT will be calculated at check-out
Compatible Not compatible
VitalSource PC, Mac, iPhone & iPad Amazon Kindle eReader
ePub & PDF Apple & PC desktop. Mobile devices (Apple & Android) Amazon Kindle eReader
Mobi Amazon Kindle eReader Anything else

Institutional Access


The first edition of Geometric Morphometrics for Biologists has been the primary resource for teaching modern geometric methods of shape analysis to biologists who have a stronger background in biology than in multivariate statistics and matrix algebra. These geometric methods are appealing to biologists who approach the study of shape from a variety of perspectives, from clinical to evolutionary, because they incorporate the geometry of organisms throughout the data analysis. The second edition of this book retains the emphasis on accessible explanations, and the copious illustrations and examples of the first, updating the treatment of both theory and practice. The second edition represents the current state-of-the-art and adds new examples and summarizes recent literature, as well as provides an overview of new software and step-by-step guidance through details of carrying out the analyses.

Key Features

  • Contains updated coverage of methods, especially for sampling complex curves and 3D forms and a new chapter on applications of geometric morphometrics to forensics
  • Offers a reorganization of chapters to streamline learning basic concepts
  • Presents detailed instructions for conducting analyses with freely available, easy to use software
  • Provides numerous illustrations, including graphical presentations of important theoretical concepts and demonstrations of alternative approaches to presenting results


Advanced undergraduates, and graduates/research workers in taxonomy, ecology, evolution, comparative zoology and botany from the cellular to the whole organism levels. Any branch of biology where the analysis and comparison of shape and form is important.

Table of Contents

  • Preface
  • Chapter 1. Introduction

    • A Critical Overview of Measurement Theory
    • Shape and Size
    • Methods of Data Analysis
    • Biological and Statistical Hypotheses
    • Organization of the Book
    • Software and Other Resources
    • References
  • Part 1: Basics of Shape Data

    • Chapter 2. Landmarks and Semilandmarks

      • Criteria for Choosing Landmarks
      • Bookstein’s Typology of Landmarks
      • Examples: Applying Ideals to Actual Cases
      • Designing Your Own Measurement Scheme
      • References
    • Chapter 3. Simple Size and Shape Variables: Shape Coordinates

      • Shape Coordinates
      • Size
      • Statistics of Shape Coordinates
      • Procrustes Superimposition
      • Procrustes Superimposition in Three-Dimensions
      • Semilandmark Sliding
      • Resistant-Fit Superimposition
      • References
    • Chapter 4. Theory of Shape

      • The Definition of Shape
      • Morphometric Spaces
      • Pre-Shape Space
      • Shape Spaces
      • The Spaces of Three-Dimensional Configurations
      • A Numerical Example for the Simplest Case
      • Tangent Spaces
      • Summary
      • References
    • Chapter 5. The Thin-plate Spline: Visualizing Shape Change as a Deformation

      • Modeling Shape Change as a Deformation
      • The Physical Metaphor
      • An Intuitive Introduction to Partial Warps
      • An Algebraic Introduction to Partial Warps
      • Decomposing the Deformation of Three-Dimensional Data
      • Using the Thin-Plate Spline to Visualize Shape Change
      • Using Bending Energy to Superimpose Semilandmarks
      • Appendix
      • References
  • Part 2: Analyzing Shape Variables

    • Chapter 6. Ordination Methods

      • Principal Components Analysis
      • Canonical Variates Analysis
      • Between Groups Principal Components


No. of pages:
© Academic Press 2012
Academic Press
eBook ISBN:
Hardcover ISBN:
Paperback ISBN:

About the Author

Miriam Zelditch

Affiliations and Expertise

Museum of Paleontology, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI, USA

Donald Swiderski

Affiliations and Expertise

University of Michigan Medical Center, Ann Arbor, MI, USA

H. Sheets

Affiliations and Expertise

Department of Physics, Canisius College, Buffalo, NY, USA