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Academic & Professional Books  Ecology  Biogeography & Invasive Species

Comparative Biogeography Discovering and Classifying Biogeographical Patterns of a Dynamic Earth

By: Lynne R Parenti and Malte C Ebach
295 pages, Col & b/w figs, tabs
Comparative Biogeography
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  • Comparative Biogeography ISBN: 9780520259454 Hardback Dec 2009 Usually dispatched within 4 days
Price: £69.99
About this book Contents Customer reviews Biography Related titles

About this book

To unravel the complex shared history of the Earth and its life forms, biogeographers analyze patterns of biodiversity, species distribution, and geological history. So far, the field of biogeography has been fragmented into divergent systematic and evolutionary approaches, with no overarching or unifying research theme or method. In this text, Lynne Parenti and Malte Ebach address this discord and outline comparative tools to unify biogeography. Rooted in phylogenetic systematics, this comparative biogeographic approach offers a comprehensive empirical framework for discovering and deciphering the patterns and processes of the distribution of life on Earth.

The authors cover biogeography from its fundamental ideas to the most effective ways to implement them. Real-life examples illustrate concepts and problems, including the first comparative biogeographical analysis of the Indo-West Pacific, an introduction to biogeographical concepts rooted in the earth sciences, and the integration of phylogeny, evolution and earth history.


Preface xi 1. Introduction 1 Classification in Science 1 Earth and Life Evolved Together 4 Biogeography 8 Comparative Biogeography 9 Classification of Areas: Systematics and Biogeography 10 Toward a Comparative Biogeography 11 Organization of This Book 13 PART ONE: HISTORY AND HOMOLOGY 15 2. History and Development of Comparative Biogeography 17 The Meaning of Place 17 Exposing the Idea 34 Contradictory Biogeography 36 Area Homology 42 Establishing a Comparative Biogeography 47 3. Building Blocks of Biogeography: Endemic Areas and Areas of Endemism 53 Endemism 53 Taxonomic Units and Taxa 61 Taxonomic Areas and Biota 63 Discovering Biotic Areas 66 4. Building Blocks of Biogeography: Biotic Areas and Area Homology 75 Biotic Areas and Area Homology 75 Discovering Biotic Area Relationships 77 The Real World: Complexity of Areagrams 79 PART TWO: METHODS 101 5. Biogeographic Processes 103 Biogeographic Processes 103 Vicariance and Dispersal 106 Other Explanatory Models 112 Why Not to Optimize Areas in Biogeography: Areagrams versus Taxon/Area Cladograms (TACs) 114 6. Biogeographic Methods and Applications 119 Comparing Biogeographic Methods and Applications 119 Systematic Biogeographic Methods 121 Evolutionary Biogeographic Methods 133 Biogeographic Applications 142 7. The Systematic Biogeographic Method 153 Doing Systematic Biogeography 153 The Structure of Areagrams and Taxon-Area Cladograms 161 Converting Cladograms and Trees into Areagrams and TACs 162 Solving Single Areagrams 168 The General Areagram: Combining Areagrams and Subtrees 177 Discovering Geographical Congruence 181 PART THREE: IMPLEMENTATION 189 8. Geology and Comparative Biogeography 191 A Biogeographer's Guide to Geology 191 The Journey of a Pebble: Exploring Geological Concepts 194 Systematic Biogeography and Geology: Reciprocal Illumination 205 9. Implementing Principles: Biogeography of the Pacific 213 The Challenge of Pacific Biogeography 213 Global Endemic Areas 216 Systematic Biogeography of the Pacifi c 219 Areagram Analysis 227 General Pattern 228 Reconsidered Proposal of Endemic Areas 234 Biogeography of the Pacific: Patterns and Predictions 235 10. The Future of Biogeography 239 Biogeography and Identity 239 Overview 240 Biogeography as an Independent Discipline 243 Biogeography as an Integrative Discipline 244 Summary 249 Glossary 251 Bibliography 259 Index 281 About the Authors 293

Customer Reviews


Lynne R. Parenti is Research Scientist and Curator of Fishes at the National Museum of Natural History in the Smithsonian Institution, and co-editor, with R. Claro and K. C. Lindeman, of Ecology of the Marine Fishes of Cuba (2002), co-editor, with M.L.J. Stiassny and G. D. Johnson, of Interrelationships of Fishes (1996, 1998), and co-author, with C. J. Humphries, of Cladistic biogeography (1986, 1999). Malte C. Ebach is a Post Doctoral Fellow at Arizona State University's International Institute for Species Exploration, and co-author, with D. M. Williams, of Foundations of Systematics and Biogeography (2008), and co-editor, with R. S. Tangey, of Biogeography in a Changing World (2006).
By: Lynne R Parenti and Malte C Ebach
295 pages, Col & b/w figs, tabs
Media reviews
Parenti and Ebach provide a fine introduction to the aims and methods of comparative biogeography, and the difference that it makes to our view of the world. Energetic and sometimes provocative, this book shows us how we can start to untangle the interconnected threads of biotic and planetary evolution to more clearly understand how earth and life evolve together.-Sir Peter Crane, FRS, Yale University
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