Books  Habitats, Ecosystems & Natural Spaces  Coastal 

Seashore Ecology of New Zealand and the Pacific

By: John Morton(Author)

504 pages, 300 photos, illustrations

David Bateman Ltd

Hardback | Sep 2004 | #232800 | ISBN: 1869533992
Availability: Usually dispatched within 2-3 weeks Details
NHBS Price: £147.00 $189/€161 approx

About this book

This huge book is from one of New Zealand's most respected scientists, Professor John Morton, and is the culmination of a life's work. Professor Morton and Dr Bruce Hayward (scientific editor) have painstakingly documented and described New Zealand's sea shore, and extended this commentary to include major coastal environments in the Pacific. Seashore Ecology of New Zealand and the Pacific is destined to become a classic of New Zealand science and be taken up as a vital text for all undergraduate study in this subject. With nearly 500 pages and over 300 diagrams and illustrations, it is the definitive guide to the environments, flora and fauna of our unique and varied coast. Seashore Ecology of New Zealand and the Pacific is about the animal and plant communities set up where the margins of islands and continents slope into the sea. The primary story – to be told in greater detail – is concerned with the intertidal zone, the narrow belt over which the interface of land and sea regularly shifts back and forth, in most parts of the world twice daily, First New Zealand shores are systematically described in their regional detail, with the addition of material from 25 years' investigation, particularly in the subtidal zone. Then with a broader brush follows a comparative account of the equivalent hard shores, with their biogeography, around the entire Pacific Rim. The final chapter culminates with an account of the coral shores of the tropical Pacific, based first on the atoll of Aitutaki in the Cook Islands, easily reached from New Zealand and still – for the present at least – unspoiled.


- New Zealand: the pattern of shores
- Life forms of the zoned shore
- Some basic zoning
- The tides and waves
- High energy (exposed) shores
- Close shelter
- Shores with enriched algae
- Pools, crevices and borings
- Coastal bedrock
- Islands and biogeography
- Boulder shores
- Life forms under boulders
- Dark communities
- Communities and succession
- Beyond the tides
- The Pacific Rim: East Australia
- Pacific Asia
- Pacific America
- Pacific Coral Shores: reefs and their building
- Crossing the reef
- The inhabited shore
- Mangroves
- Coral outposts

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Graduating in zoology at Auckland University in 1946, John Morton spent ten years in England, lecturing in the University of London and working on Molluscs at Plymouth. His publications gained him the London DSc. In 1960, Morton became Auckland University's first Professor of Zoology, and was to set up a modern school centring around marine biology. The year 1965 saw the opening of the Leigh Marine Biology Laboratory and the completion of Morton and Miller The New Zealand Sea Shore. It was also the year that John Morton led the marine party of the Royal Society of London's Expedition to the Solomon Islands. This brought him continuing interest in Pacific coral reefs and he went on to work intensively in Fiji, Samoa, Cook Islands, New Caledonia and Papua New Guinea. In 1974 he was Royal Society Visiting Professor in Zoology in Hong Kong, producing – with B.S. Morton – a book on south-east Asian shores. In 1977 he taught and researched at Vancouver Island and on the Atlantic shores of Canada. He has a long interest in biological philosophy and, in more recent years, conservation.

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