Interactions between competitors, predators and their prey have traditionally been viewed as the foundation of community structure. Parasites – long ignored in community ecology – are now recognized as playing an important part in influencing species interactions and consequently affecting ecosystem function. Parasitism can interact with other ecological drivers, resulting in both detrimental and beneficial effects on biodiversity and ecosystem health. Species interactions involving parasites are also key to understanding many biological invasions and emerging infectious diseases.
Parasites in Ecological Communities bridges the gap between community ecology and epidemiology to create a wide-ranging examination of how parasites and pathogens affect all aspects of ecological communities, enabling the new generation of ecologists to include parasites as a key consideration in their studies. This comprehensive guide to a newly emerging field is of relevance to academics, practitioners and graduates in biodiversity, conservation and population management, and animal and human health.
"Hatcher and Dunn have done us a great service. Theirs is an important and timely book that should catalyse research at the interface of epidemiology and community ecology. It reads well [...] is also well referenced [...] With its nice combination of models and empirical examples, [this book] seems tailor-made for a graduate course in community ecology or ecological parasitology."
- Robert Poulin, Ecology
"The ecology of infectious disease is a fast growing topic [...] To date, there has not been an adequate text to teach from. [This book] [...] fills this niche well. In contrast to contributed volumes, [it] speaks with a single voice. The authors use themes centered around mathematical epidemiology and community ecology, but they do so in such a way that is accessible to non-math savvy students [...] does a very good job summarizing the relevant literature in tables that efficiently indicate who has done what on a particular question. The text covers many systems [...] We just finished using it in our graduate seminar and found it to be up to date and comprehensive. Since then, I have referred to it regularly [...] will be required reading for our future graduate students [...] should be required reading for any ecologist."
- Kevin Lafferty, US Geological Survey
"This is a very useful book which is likely to have considerable impact in stimulating both theoretical as well as empirical studies on the way in which parasites manipulate and modify the world in which we live. It is particularly recommended to graduate and postgraduate students for its logical, comprehensive layout and the wealth of literature, mostly recent, which is discussed."
- Trevor Petney, Singapore Journal of Tropical Geography
Part I. Introduction
Part II. Parasites and Competitors:
2. One host-one parasite systems
3. Apparent competition
4. Parasite-mediated competition
5. Parasite-modified competition
6. Examples from conservation and management
7. Competition between parasites
Part III. Parasites and Predators:
10. Parasites of prey with specialist predators
11. Parasites of prey with generalist predators
12. Parasites of predator
13. Parasites of predator and prey
14. Applications: predator control and harvesting
Part IV. Parasites and Intraguild Predation:
17. Ecological significance of IGP
18. IGP as a unifying framework for competition and predation
19. Parasites intrinsic to IGP
20. Parasites extrinsic to IGP
21. Models of parasitism extrinsic to IGP
22. IGP and the evolution of host-parasite relationships
Part V. Plant Pathogens and Parasitic Plants:
24. Introduction: parasitism of plants
25. Soil borne pathogens
26. Plant defence strategies
27. Parasitic plants
Part VI. Parasites and Invasions:
31. Parasite introduction and acquisition
32. Loss of parasites by invaders: enemy release
33. Invasions and host-parasite co-evolution
34. The impact of parasitism on biological invasion
Part VII. Ecosystem Parasitology:
37. Trophic cascades
38. Parasite dynamics in multihost communities
39. Biodiversity and disease
40. Parasites in the food web
41. Bioenergetic implications of parasitism
42. Ecosystem engineering
43. Ecosystem health
44. Evolutionary considerations
Part VIII. Emerging Diseases in Humans and Wildlife:
47. The process of disease emergence
48. The evolution of emergence
49. Phylogenetic and temporal patterns of emergence
50. Environmental change and emergence
51. Conservation and control
Part IX. Where Do We Go From Here?
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Melanie J. Hatcher is Visiting Research Fellow, School of Biology, University of Bristol, and Senior Research Fellow, Institute of Integrative and Comparative Biology, University of Leeds.
Alison M. Dunn is Reader in Evolutionary Biology, Institute of Integrative and Comparative Biology, Faculty of Biological Sciences, University of Leeds.