Author: Walter G. Whitford
Release Date: 2002-03-25
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
"In this book the authors consider the ecology of desert organisms. They have illustrated the principles involved with a selection of interesting examples from a wide body of research and from their own experience. In their study they have given equal emphasis to physiological ecology and population ecology. They have looked both at the way organisms avoid the extremes of the desert environment and at adaptations in their morphology, physiology and behaviour which make them better able to tolerate the unfavourable conditions. Reproduction and the dynamics, structure and evolution of desert communities are also discussed in detail, and in the concluding chapter the authors consider the increasingly important role of man in shaping the desert environment. The book provides a broad synthesis of the major principles of ecology, and with its balance between the botanical and zoological aspects of the subject, it will be of value to life scientists in general. Students wishing to broaden their knowledge of ecology as well as the reader interested in desert biology will find here a wealth of fascinating material in a clear and concise form" -- Back cover.
Author: Robert H. Webb
Publisher: University of Nevada Press
Release Date: 2009
"This title presents new research on the Mojave Desert and the contributors discuss the desert from several perspectives including regional threats such as expanding human populations, climate change, atmospheric nitrogen deposition and invasive plants, the impact of roads in a desert ecosystem, soils and plant communities, shrinking aquifers and the monitoring and sustainability of this fragile ecosystem."--NHBS Environment Bookstore.
Author: Philip W. Rundel
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Release Date: 2005-10-20
The Mojave Desert is a winter-rainfall desert, experiencing drought in the summer months and occasional rain during the cooler winter months. For many years it has attracted the attention of ecologists and conservation biologists concerned with maintaining the unique status of this region. This book provides a broad overview of plant and animal ecology in the Mojave Desert, with a focus on data from Rock Valley, Nevada. The data from many major research projects is organized into a synthesis describing community structure and dynamics in desert ecosystems.
Author: Kris M. Havstad
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Release Date: 2006-07-20
The Jornada Basin LTER is located in the Chihuahuan Desert, the largest in North America. This region of south central New Mexico has a history of nearly 100 years as the basis for scientific research. This work gives a thorough, encompassing review of the tremendous array of observations resulting from experiments conducted in this ecosystem. Beginning with thorough descriptions of the most salient features of the region, the book then reviews a wide range of archived and active data sets on a diversity of biotic and abiotic features. It next presents a syntheses of important topics including livestock grazing and remediation efforts. A concluding chapter provides a synthesis of the principles that have emerged from this body of work, and how these relate to the broader fields of ecology and natural resource management. It concludes with recommendations for future research directions. The insightful views expressed in this volume should guide management of arid landscapes globally. This is the sixth volume in the Long Term Ecological Network Series.
Author: Stanley D. Smith
Publisher: Springer Science & Business Media
Release Date: 2012-12-06
Following a description of the physical and biological characterization of the four North American deserts together with the primary adaptations of plants to environmental stress, the authors go on to present case studies of key species. They provide an up-to-date and comprehensive review of the major patterns of adaptation in desert plants, with one chapter devoted to several important exotic plants that have invaded these deserts. The whole is rounded off with a synthesis of the resource requirements of desert plants and how they may respond to global climate change.
Author: Alan K. Craig
Release Date: 1968
Genre: Desert ecology
Results of a reconnaissance are presented for part of the south-central Peruvian coast. These data constitute the initial phase of a project involving a general survey of marine desert ecology. Broad objectives include reconstruction of the late-Pleistocene paleogeographic environment and assembly of land-based evidence for previous Peru Current deflections. Contemporary problems of human ecology are considered after systematic review of existing literature on geology, geomorphology, oceanography, meteorology, botany, and archaeology. (Author).
Author: Gary A. Polis
Publisher: Century Collection
Release Date: 2016-10-11
"Provides interesting and thought-provoking reading and is highly recommended to anyone interested in desert ecosystems or community ecology. The book . . . should serve as an inspiration to many for future research."--Journal of Biogeography "This book is not just about deserts; it is an update of the contributions that research in desert systems is making to community ecology. . . This book will provide a useful reference for desert ecologists, as well as indicate critical directions where progress needs to be made."--Ecology "This important book fills a significant gap in previous syntheses by presenting a detailed series of reviews of current understanding of community patterns and structure in desert environments. . . . Each chapter is thorough and well written and . . . closes with a discussion of suggested future research. . . . [T]hese ideas will do much to focus interest on the importance of desert systems in understanding community. Thus, this book has interest well beyond desert ecologists alone."--BioScience "Valuable reading and reference for ecology students, teachers and researchers."--Quarterly Review of Biology
Author: Robert H. Robichaux
Publisher: Century Collection
Release Date: 2016-10-11
The Sonoran Desert is a distinctive biotic region that fascinates scientist, students, and nature lovers. This book offers an accessible introduction to Sonoran Desert ecology. Eight original essays by Sonoran Desert specialists such as Paul Martin and Richard Felger provide an overview of the practice of ecology at landscape, community, and organismal scales. The essays explore the rich diversity of plant life in the Sonoran Desert and the ecological patterns and processes that underlie it. They also reveal the history and scientific legacy of the Desert Laboratory in Tucson, which has conducted research on the Sonoran Desert since 1903. Coverage includes diversity and affinities of the flora, physical environments and vegetation, landscape complexity and ecological diversity, population dynamics of annual plants, form and function of cacti, and the relationship between plants and the animals that use them as feeding and breeding resources. The text also examines the ecological consequences of modern agricultural development, as well as the impact on the modern biota of 40,000 years of change in climate, vegetation, megafauna, and ancient cultures. This comprehensive book covers a broad range of spatial and temporal scales to highlight the diversity of research being pursued in the Sonoran Desert. It is both a testament to these ongoing studies and an authoritative introduction to the diverse plant life in the region.