The Biology of Deserts

Author: David Ward

Publisher: Oxford University Press

ISBN: 0199211469

Category: Nature

Page: 339

View: 9713

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This book offers a concise but comprehensive introduction to desert ecology. As with other titles in the Biology of Habitats Series, the emphasis in this book is on the organisms that dominate this harsh environment, although pollution, conservation and experimental aspects are also considered.

Biology of Desert Invertebrates

Author: C. S. Crawford

Publisher: Springer Science & Business Media

ISBN: 3642857949

Category: Science

Page: 314

View: 6495

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What little we know of the biology of desert invertebrates stems largely from inferences based on intensive and repeated observations. Such informa tion is not gained easily, since despite the actual abundance of these animals, relatively few of them are ever seen. In fact, except for species impacting on the well-being of human populations, historically most have been ignored by scholars in the western world. Indeed, it was ancient Egypt, with its reverence for the symbolism of the scarab, that probably provided us with the clearest early record of prominent desert types. A more modest resurgence of the story had to wait until the arrival of the present century. To be sure, some of the more obvious species had by then been elevated by European collectors to the level of drawing-room curios ities, and expeditions had returned large numbers to museums. But by 1900 the task of describing desert species and relationships among them was still in its infancy; and as for careful natural history studies, they too were just coming into their own.

Biology of Deserts

The Proceedings of a Symposium on the Biology of Hot and Cold Deserts Organized by the Institute of Biology

Author: Institute of Biology

Publisher: N.A

ISBN: N.A

Category: Desert biology

Page: 223

View: 516

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The Biology of Peatlands, 2e

Author: Håkan Rydin,John K. Jeglum

Publisher: OUP Oxford

ISBN: 0191508292

Category: Science

Page: 432

View: 338

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Peatlands form important landscape elements in many parts of the world and play significant roles for biodiversity and global carbon balance. This new edition has been fully revised and updated, documenting the latest advances in areas such as microbial processes and relations between biological processes and hydrology. As well as thoroughly referencing the latest research, the authors expose a rich older literature where an immense repository of natural history has accumulated. The Biology of Peatlands starts with an overview of the main peatland types (marsh, swamp, fen, and bog), before examining the entire range of biota present (microbes, invertebrates, plants, and vertebrates), together with their specific adaptations to peatland habitats. Detailed coverage is devoted to the genus Sphagnum, the most important functional plant group in northern peatlands, although tropical and southern hemisphere peatlands are also covered. Throughout the book the interactions between organisms and environmental conditions (especially wetness, availability of oxygen, and pH) are emphasized, with chapters on the physical and chemical characteristics of peat, the role of peat as an archive of past vegetation and climate, and peatland succession and development. Several other key factors and processes are then examined, including hydrology and nutrient cycling. The fascinating peatland landforms in different parts of the world are described, together with theories on how they have developed. Human interactions with peatlands are considered in terms of management, conservation, and restoration. A final chapter, new to this edition, focuses on the role of peatlands as sources or sinks for the greenhouse gases carbon dioxide and methane, and the influences of climate change on peatlands. This timely and accessible text is suitable for students and researchers of peatland ecology, as well as providing an authoritative overview for professional ecologists and conservation biologists.

Migration : The Biology of Life on the Move

The Biology of Life on the Move

Author: Davis Hugh Dingle Professor in the Department of Entomology and Center for Population Biology University of California

Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA

ISBN: 0195358279

Category: Nature

Page: 480

View: 1770

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Migration is one of the most fascinating and dramatic of all animal behaviors. Historically, however, the study of migration has been fragmented, with ornithologists, entomologists, and marine biologists paying little attention to work outside their own fields. This treatment of the subject shows how comparisons across taxa can in fact illuminate migratory life cycles and the relation of migration to other movements. The book thus takes an integrated ecological perspective, focusing on migration as a biological phenomenon. The work is divided into four parts, each with a brief introductory section. Part I defines migration, gives examples, and places migration in the spectrum of movement behaviors, concluding with a chapter on methods for its study. Part II focuses on proximate mechanisms, including physiology and morphology (and the constraints associated with them), the interactions between migration and wind and current patterns, and the various orientation and navigation mechanisms by which migrants find their way about. Part III on the evolution of migratory life histories addresses the evolutionary and ecological basis for migration and the roles of migration not only in the lives of organisms, but also in the ecological communities in which they live. Part IV is devoted to a brief consideration of migration and its relation to pest management and conservation. As a major contribution to a vital subject, this work will be valued by all researchers and students in the field of animal behavior, ecology, and zoology.

Dispersal Biology of Desert Plants

Author: Karen van Rheede van Oudtshoorn,Margaretha W. van Rooyen

Publisher: Springer Science & Business Media

ISBN: 9783540648864

Category: Science

Page: 242

View: 478

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Dispersal processes have important effects on plant distribution and abundance. Although adaptations to long range dispersal (telechory) are by no means rare in desert plants, many desert plant species do not possess any features to promote dispersal (atelechory), while others have structures that hamper dispersal (antitelechory). The high frequency with which atelechorous and antitelechorous mechanisms are present in plants inhabiting arid areas indicates the importance of these adaptations. Among the benefits derived from these adaptations are the spreading of germination over time, the provision of suitable conditions for germination and subsequent seedling establishment, and the maintenance of a reservoir of available seeds (seed bank). This book describes the ways and means - anatomical, morphological and ecological - by which dispersal in desert plants has evolved to ensure the survival of these species in their harsh and unpredictable environment.

The Biology of Vines

Author: Francis E. Putz

Publisher: Cambridge University Press

ISBN: 9780521392501

Category: Gardening

Page: 526

View: 8135

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This 1992 book is a treatment of what was known about climbing plants, written by a group of experts.

The Biology of Human Survival

Life and Death in Extreme Environments

Author: Claude A. Piantadosi

Publisher: Oxford University Press

ISBN: 9780199748075

Category: Science

Page: 280

View: 3721

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The range of environments in which people can survive is extensive, yet most of the natural world cannot support human life. The Biology of Human Survival identifies the key determinants of life or death in extreme environments from a physiologist's perspective, integrating modern concepts of stress, tolerance, and adaptation into explanations of life under Nature's most austere conditions. The book examines how individuals survive when faced with extremes of immersion, heat, cold or altitude, emphasizing the body's recognition of stress and the brain's role in optimizing physiological function in order to provide time to escape or to adapt. In illustrating how human biology adapts to extremes, the book also explains how we learn to cope by blending behavior and biology, first by trial and error, then by rigorous scientific observation, and finally by technological innovation. The book describes life-support technology and how it enables humans to enter once unendurable realm, from the depths of the ocean to the upper reaches of the atmosphere and beyond. Finally, it explores the role that advanced technology might play in special environments of the future, such as long journeys into space.

The Biology of the Coleoptera

Author: R. A. Crowson

Publisher: Academic Press

ISBN: 1483217604

Category: Science

Page: 814

View: 1659

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The Biology of the Coleoptera covers the branches of modern biology of Coleoptera. The book discusses the biological study of beetles; some skeletal peculiarities and the internal structures of the adults. The text also describes some structural features of larvae and pupae; food, digestion and the alimentary canal; and blood, osmoregulation, reserves, excretion and endocrine organs. The locomotion, respiration and energetics; the senses; and the cuticular properties, appearance, color and luminosity are also considered. The book further tackles the adult and larval behavior; the development and life-cycles; and the cytology and genetics. The text also looks into water beetles; special habitats; predation and defence; and symbiotic and parasitic relations. The ecological triangle: beetles, fungi and trees; and herbivorous beetles are also looked into. The book also discusses the role of beetles as ecological indicators; and the evolutionary history of beetles. Entomologists, ecologists, and biologists will find the book useful.

Desert Biology

Special Topics on the Physical and Biological Aspects of Arid Regions

Author: G. W. Brown

Publisher: Elsevier

ISBN: 148322371X

Category: Science

Page: 654

View: 4853

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Desert Biology: Special Topics on the Physical and Biological Aspects on Arid Regions, Volume I covers the biology, geophysical characteristics, and ways of life in arid regions. This book is composed of 11 chapters, and begins with a brief description of a desert community, the Merkhiyat Jebels, with its diverse fauna and flora. The subsequent chapters look into the climate, geographical distribution, geologic and geomorphic aspects, and the evolution of desert community. These topics are followed by intensive discussions on desert plants, animals, and limnology. The last chapter describes the adaptive processes and human adaptation capacity to arid environments. This book will prove useful to upper division and graduate students in desert biology.

Ecology of Desert Systems

Author: Walter G. Whitford

Publisher: Elsevier

ISBN: 9780080504995

Category: Science

Page: 343

View: 5742

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Conventional wisdom considers deserts stark, harsh regions that support few living things. Most people also believe that water alone makes the desert bloom. Ecology of Desert Systems challenges these conventional views. This volume explores a broad range of topics of interest to ecosystem, population, community, and physiological ecologists. Climate, weather patterns, geomorphology, and wind and water processes are examined as variables that affect the distribution of biota through fundamental ecosystem processes. Descriptions of morphological, behavioral, and physiological adaptations of desert biota illuminate, through the lens of patch dynamics, principles for understanding observed patterns of primary production, nutrient cycling, and the effects of consumers. Desertification, and the techniques for monitoring and quantifying it, is examined within the framework of desert ecosystem patterns and processes. * Focuses on the interactions of climate, soil, and biota along a spectrum of spatial and temporal scales * Details the role of animals in desert ecosystems and landscape processes * Examines watershed scale processes, the ecology of ephemeral lakes, and the ecological changes identified with desertification * Outlines the fundamental concepts relevant to sustainable development of arid lands

The Ecology of Temporary Waters

Author: D. Dudley Williams

Publisher: Springer Science & Business Media

ISBN: 9401160848

Category: Science

Page: 206

View: 8435

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The primary role of this book is to introduce the reader to, and hopefully stimulate interest in, the ecology of temporary aquatic habi tats. The book assumes that the reader will have, already, some gen eral knowledge of ecology but this is not essential. Temporary waters exhibit amplitudes in both physical and chemical parameters which are much greater than those found in most waterbodies. The organisms that live in these types of habitats have, therefore, to be very well adapted to these conditions if they are to survive. Survival depends largely on exceptional physiological tolerance or effective immigration and emigration abilities. Examples of such adaptations are given throughout the book and it is hoped that these will aid the reader in gaining an insight into the structure and function of plant and animal communities of these unusual habi tats. The final chapter suggests field and laboratory projects that should be useful to students in school and university studies.

The Biology of Freshwater Wetlands

Author: Arnold G. van der Valk

Publisher: Oxford University Press

ISBN: 0199608954

Category: Nature

Page: 280

View: 6884

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A concise, easy to read introduction for anyone working in the field of wetland ecology. Besides updating and expanding the material in all chapters of the first edition, the second edition includes new chapters on global climate change, invasive species, and restoration and creation.

The Biology of Moral Systems

Author: Richard D. Alexander

Publisher: Transaction Publishers

ISBN: 9780202369488

Category: Philosophy

Page: 301

View: 2458

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Despite wide acceptance that the attributes of living creatures have appeared through a cumulative evolutionary process guided chiefly by natural selection, many human activities have seemed analytically inaccessible through such an approach. Prominent evolutionary biologists, for example, have described morality as contrary to the direction of biological evolution, and moral philosophers rarely regard evolution as relevant to their discussions. The Biology of Moral Systems adopts the position that moral questions arise out of conflicts of interest, and that moral systems are ways of using confluences of interest at lower levels of social organization to deal with conflicts of interest at higher levels. Moral systems are described as systems of indirect reciprocity: humans gain and lose socially and reproductively not only by direct transactions, but also by the reputations they gain from the everyday flow of social interactions. The author develops a general theory of human interests, using senescence and effort theory from biology, to help analyze the patterning of human lifetimes. He argues that the ultimate interests of humans are reproductive, and that the concept of morality has arisen within groups because of its contribution to unity in the context, ultimately, of success in intergroup competition. He contends that morality is not easily relatable to universals, and he carries this argument into a discussion of what he calls the greatest of all moral problems, the nuclear arms race. "Crammed with sage observations on moral dilemmas and many reasons why an understanding of evolution based on natural selection will advance thinking in finding practical solutions to our most difficult social problems." Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social SciencesRichard D. Alexander is Donald Ward Tinkle Professor of Evolutionary Biology, Department of Biology, and Curator of Insects, Museum of Zoology, University of Michigan. A recipient of numerous awards, Dr. Alexander is the author of Darwinism and Human Affairs.

The Biology of Alcoholism

Vol. 7 The Pathogenesis of Alcoholism: Biological Factors

Author: Henri Begleiter

Publisher: Springer Science & Business Media

ISBN: 1461335183

Category: Juvenile Nonfiction

Page: 635

View: 3721

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The previous volume, The Pathogenesis of Alcoholism: Psychosocial Factors, attempted to describe the interaction of biological, psychological, and social factors that lead to the initiation and perpetuation of alcoholism. The preface to that volume presented our particular view of the bio-. psycho-social interaction as a progressive process in which earlier developments produce new pathogenetic mechanisms, which in turn lead to still other cyclical feedback activities. Although influences from each of the three phenomenologic levels are at work during each stage of the clinical course, it would appear that social factors are most significant in the early phase, psychological factors at the intermediate level, and biological ones toward the end. These differences are only relative, however, for influences of all three types surely are operative during all stages of the syndrome. This appears to be particularly true for the biological parameters of activity. Don Goodwin (1976), who has supplied much of the data that support the role of hereditary factors in alcoholism, is wont to say that all living behavior is biological-by definition. The operational evidence for this is perhaps more evident in alcoholism than in other syndromes. For example, the general social indifference of many Asians to alcohol may reflect the presence of an atypical isoenzyme of alcohol dehydrogenase rather than some independently derived cultural norm.

The Biology of Chameleons

Author: Krystal A. Tolley,Anthony Herrel

Publisher: Univ of California Press

ISBN: 0520957385

Category: Science

Page: 312

View: 9960

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They change color depending on their mood. They possess uniquely adapted hands and feet distinct from other tetrapods. They feature independently movable eyes. This comprehensive volume delves into these fascinating details and thorough research about one of the most charismatic families of reptiles—Chameleonidae. Written for professional herpetologists, scholars, researchers, and students, this book takes readers on a voyage across time to discover everything that is known about chameleon biology: anatomy, physiology, adaptations, ecology, behavior, biogeography, phylogeny, classification, and conservation. A description of the natural history of chameleons is given, along with the fossil record and typical characteristics of each genus. The state of chameleons in the modern world is also depicted, complete with new information on the most serious threats to these remarkable reptiles.