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Ant Ecology

Edited By: Lori Lach, Catherine Parr and Kirsti Abbott

402 pages, Col plates, figs, tabs

Oxford University Press

Paperback | Jun 2010 | #185069 | ISBN-13: 9780199592616
Availability: Usually dispatched within 6 days Details
NHBS Price: £43.99 $55/€52 approx
Hardback | Nov 2009 | #180687 | ISBN-13: 9780199544639
Availability: Usually dispatched within 2-3 weeks Details
NHBS Price: £94.99 $120/€113 approx

About this book

Comprising a substantial part of living biomass on earth, ants are integral to the functioning of terrestrial ecosystems. More than 12,000 species have been described to date, and it is estimated that perhaps as many still await classification.

Ant Ecology explores key ecological issues and new developments in myrmecology across a range of scales. The book begins with a global perspective on species diversity in time and space and explores interactions at the community level before describing the population ecology of these social insects. The final section covers the recent ecological phenomenon of invasive ants: how they move across the globe, invade, affect ecosystems, and are managed by humans. Each chapter links ant ecology to broader ecological principles, provides a succinct summary, and discusses future research directions. Practical aspects of myrmecology, applications of ant ecology, debates, and novel discoveries are highlighted in text boxes throughout the volume.

The book concludes with a synthesis of the current state of the field and a look at exciting future research directions. The extensive reference list and full glossary are invaluable for researchers, and those new to the field.

Ant Ecology is probably the most complete summary of what is known about the ecology of ants to date. It is a must-read for first-year graduate students either planning to use ants as a model system or interested in various aspects of ant ecology. Ant Ecology will serve as a reference for cutting-edge ecological research on ants by among the most up-and-coming myrmecologists around. Ecology The editors have successfully woven together pieces from a wide range of contributors to create an enjoyable volume that provides both a comprehensive overview for those new to the field, and a useful reference volume for experienced myrmecologists. TREE The book as a whole has been extremely well written, in a simple and clear style which makes most of the contents appealing to a wide range of readers, even those without a strong background in biology. The book also incorporates 15 superb colour plates depicting a selection from the vast array of fascinating antlife. Animal Behaviour


Contents

Foreword;
Preface;
PART 1 - GLOBAL ANT DIVERSITY AND CONSERVATION;
1. Taxonomy, Phylogenetics, and Evolution;
2. Biogeography;
3. Geographic Gradients;
4. Ant Conservation: Current Status and Call to Action;
PART 2 - COMMUNITY DYNAMICS;
5. Competition and the Role of Dominant Ants;
6. Ants as Mutualists;
7. Food and Shelter: How Resources Influence Ant Ecology;
8. Ant Biodiversity and Function in Disturbed and Changing Habitats;
PART 3 - POPULATION ECOLOGY;
9. Colonial Reproduction and Life Histories;
10. Colony Structure;
11. Nestmate Recognition;
12. Foraging and Defence Strategies in Ants;
PART 4 - INVASIVE ANTS;
13. Biogeographic and Taxonomic Patterns of Introduced Ants;
14. Invasion Processes and Causes of Success;
15. Consequences of Ant Invasions;
16. Invasive Ant Management;
17. Synthesis and Perspectives; Glossary; References; Index

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Biography

Dr. Lori Lach is a Research Fellow in the Ecosystems Restoration Laboratory at Murdoch University. She has conducted myrmecological research in many parts of the globe. Her current research interests include ant-plant and mutualistic interactions, and the consequences of biological invasions on these interactions. She is also interested in restoring native ant communities following ant invasion, and the development of restoration practices that facilitate invertebrate conservation.
Dr. Catherine Parr is the present Trapnell Fellow is African Ecology at the University of Oxford. She is a community ecologist with broad research interests encapsulating species coexistence and biodiversity conservation. Much of her research focuses on ant communities in the savannas of southern Africa and northern Australia. Current projects involve investigating the importance of habitat complexity in mediating competition.
Dr. Kirsti Abbott is an Assistant Lecturer and invasion ecologist at Monash University, with specific expertise in ants on islands, mutualisms, and management of invasive ants for biodiversity conservation. She is affiliated with isolated oceanic islands through advisory panels that help battle invasive ants, and has a passion for science communication and debate in the public arena. She currently teaches undergraduate students the importance of the practice and application of science in the hope they appreciate its contribution to the sustainability of the world we live in.

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