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Ecology: From Individuals to Ecosystems

New edition of the ultimate in ecology texts

By: Michael Begon(Author), Colin R Townsend(Author), John L Harper(Author)

738 pages, Figs, graphs, tabs, b/w photos, 1 col plate


Paperback | Jul 2005 | Edition: 4 | #151184 | ISBN: 1405111178
Availability: Usually dispatched within 4 days Details
NHBS Price: £47.99 $63/€55 approx

About this book

Begon, Townsend, and Harper's Ecology has long been regarded as the definitive textbook on all aspects of ecology. This new edition provides a comprehensive treatment of the subject, from the first principles of ecology to the current state of the field, and aims to improve students' preparedness to address the environmental problems of the new millennium.

Thoroughly revised and updated, this fourth edition includes:
- three new chapters on applied ecology, reflecting a rigorous, scientific approach to the ecological problems now facing mankind.
- discussion of over 800 new studies, updating the text throughout.
- an updated, user-friendly design with margin notes and chapter summaries that serve as study aids.

The resulting textbook is easy to use, lucid and up-to-date, and is the essential reference for all students whose degree program includes ecology and for practicing ecologists.

"Begon, Townsend and Harper has been the standard advanced textbook in ecology for nearly 20 years. I greatly welcome this fourth edition, which maintains the book's position at the forefront of the discipline."
- Professor Sir John Lawton, Chairman, Royal Commission on Environmental Pollution, and formerly Chief Executive of the UK Natural Environment Research Council

"Now in its fourth edition, this text will continue to be recognized as a forerunner in the science of ecology; it is very comprehensive, exploring ecological concepts with relevant field and laboratory studies, enriched by clear examples and illustrations."
- Journal of Biological Education

"Begon, Townsend and Harper's Ecology has been the cornerstone text for teaching ecology for almost two decades. Its comprehensive breadth and depth provides details on ecological concepts supplemented with relevant field and laboratory studies. Ecology will remain an essential text for students and practioners alike for many years to come."
- Michael Bonsall, Oxford University

"Ecology: From Individual, to Ecosystems is unparalleled among ecology texts for its breadth of coverage of contemporary ecology and for its clear presentation of even the more complex topics. The coverage of population ecology is superb, and the presentation of all topics is enriched both by extremely clear illustrations and a rich use of examples of human relationships with the environment. It should be read by all aspiring ecologists and the professors who teach them."
- Marcel Holyoak, University of California, Davis



1. Organisms in their environments: the evolutionary backdrop
2. Conditions
3. Resources
4. Life, death and life histories
5. Intraspecific competition
6. Dispersal, dormancy and metapopulations
7. Ecological applications at the level of organisms and single-species populations

8. Interspecific competition
9. The nature of predation
10. The population dynamics of predation
11. Decomposers and detritivores
12. Parasitism and disease
13. Symbiosis and mutualism
14. Abundance
15. Ecological applications at the level of population interactions

16. The nature of the community
17. The flux of energy through ecosystems
18. The flux of matter through ecosystems
19. The influence of population interactions on community structure
20. Food webs
21. Patterns in species richness
22. Ecological applications at the level of communities and ecosystems

Organism Index
Subject Index

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Born in London in 1951 and a student at the University of Leeds, Mike Begon has spent his whole scientific career at the University of Liverpool, where he is now the Professor of Ecology, specializing in the population and community ecology of infectious diseases in wildife.

Colin Townsend obtained his DPhil at the University of Sussex before taking up teaching positions at Oxford University and the University of East Anglia. In 1989 he moved from the UK to New Zealand to the University of Otago where he was the chair of the Zoology Department, and is now Director of the Ecology, Conservation and Biodiversity Research Group. He was elected to the Fellowship of the Royal Society of New Zealand in 1997.

John Harper is an award-winning biologist and a leading figure in plant population biology. He has served as a council member of the fellowship of the Royal Society and received the Darwin award in 1990. He is also the author of Population Biology of Plants and co-author, with Begon and Townsend, of Essentials of Ecology.

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