268 pages, ~80 b/w illustrations
This visually appealing book recounts the history of molecular ecology and evolution as seen through the personal lens of one of its most prolific practitioners, who has studied a panorama of creatures ranging from corals, sponges, and other invertebrates to a wide variety of vertebrate animals including numerous birds, mammals, herps, and fishes. The sketches are of two types: evocative drawings of the animals themselves, and more than 230 written abstracts summarizing the author's eclectic research on ecological–genetic topics spanning the microevolutionary to macroevolutionary. With the abstracts arranged by organismal group and placed in chronological order, the chapters in Sketches of Nature lead readers on a fascinating historical journey into the realm of molecular genetics as applied across the past four decades to intriguing questions in ecology, evolution, animal behavior, and natural history.
Chapter 1. Sunfishes (Centrarchidae)
Chapter 2. Livebearing Fishes (Poeciliidae)
Chapter 3. Other Freshwater Fishes
Chapter 4. Pipefishes and Seahorses (Syngnathidae)
Chapter 5. Other Marine Fishes
Chapter 6. The Mangrove Rivulus
Chapter 7. Amphibians
Chapter 8. Marine Turtles
Chapter 9. Freshwater Turtles
Chapter 10. Other Reptiles
Chapter 11. Birds
Chapter 12. Rodents
Chapter 13. Other Mammals
Chapter 14. Invertebrates
Chapter 15. Intergroup Comparison
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John C. Avise is a Distinguished Professor at the University of California at Irvine, and an elected member of the National Academy of Sciences, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and the American Philosophical Society. His research utilizes molecular markers to study the ecology and evolution of wild animals on topics ranging from genetic parentage and mating behaviors to gene flow, hybridization, phylogeography, speciation, and phylogeny. He has published more than 340 scientific articles and 25 books on a wide variety of evolutionary genetic topics.