Although ecologists have tended to regard agricultural ecosystems as unsuitable subjects for study, some of the most intensive studies of ecosystem processes have been made on agricultural ecosystems, and especially on grassland ecosystems. Agricultural ecosystems are generally simpler, and therefore easier to study than natural ecosystems, and the resulting studies have yielded a vast amount of information and many new research techniques have been developed. This volume, with its two main themes of energy flow and nutrient cycling in managed grasslands, is the first to treat these two subjects in an integrated way. Energy flow is considered mainly in the context of primary and secondary productivity, while nutrient cycling is considered especially in the context of fertilizer use. The result is not just a description of managed grassland ecosystems, but a bridging of the gap between ecological principles and agricultural practice. Ecologists will value the wealth of information, ideas and techniques that have resulted from managed grasslands studies - much of which is applicable to natural ecosystems. Agronomists will be interested in the ecological processes and principles underlying current management practices.
... a very useful book providing a great deal of diverse information in a digestible form ... Geographical Journal This book is a mine of well-organized information, and is provided not only with three indices, which facilitate easy reference to authors, ... but also with an excellent glossary, which is invaluable in a volume which deals with such a wide range of material from a number of different disciplines. ... The book is essential for any ecological, agricultural or geological library worthy of the name. Journal of Biogeography For many years there has been a need for a broad-based and accessible review of this kind, and that need has very largely been met with the appearance of this book. It can be recommended as a substantial study aid to students, as a useful introduction for workers taking up research in this area, and as an encouragement to all with an interest in grassland to broaden their horizons. ... Overall, a very worthwhile book and strongly recommended ... Journal of Applied Ecology We should be grateful for this concise and scholarly summary of current knowledge about these important grassland ecosystems. ... This text is very well planned and presented and will be read with advantage by advanced students in a variety of disciplines, as well as constituting an excellent reference work for researchers and teachers. Agricultural Systems
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