How do plants, animals, and humans manage to survive and adapt to the urban environment? The Biology of Urban Environments provides a comprehensive coverage of biological matters related to urban environments presenting both the conceptual and theoretical underpinnings, and practical examples required to understand and address the challenges presented by this novel environment.
The Biology of Urban Environments focusses on urban denizens: species (both domesticated and non-domesticated) that live for all or part of their life cycle in towns and cities. The biology of household plants and companion animals is discussed alongside that of species that have become feral or have not been domesticated. Temporal and spatial distribution patterns are set out and generalizations are made while exceptions are also discussed. The various strategies used and the genotypic, phenotypic, and behavioural adaptions of plants and animals in the face of the challenges presented by urban environments are explained. The final two chapters contain a discussion of the impacts of urban environments on human biology and suggestions on how this understanding might be used to address the increasing human health burden associated with illnesses that are characteristic of urbanites in the early twenty-first century.
1: What is the urban environment and what is biology?
Part I. The urban environment
2: The built environment
3: The physical environment
4: The natural environment - habitats and communities
Part II. Diversity and distribution
5: Diversity of species
7: Temporal patterns
8: Spatial patterns
Part III. Adapting to urban living
10: Physiological and behavioural changes - how do they live
Part IV. People and nature
11: Human urban biology
12: A new relationship
Philip James is Professor of Ecology in the School of Environment and Life Sciences at the University of Salford. In addition to his post at the University of Salford, Philip has honorary positions at the Universities of Manchester and Cambridge. Prior to The Biology of Urban Environments Philip has previously co-authored two books on urban ecology and has published the results of his own, and collaborative research, in journal articles. Philip is a Fellow of the Royal society of Biology and a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Ecology and Environmental Management.