Aquatic plants play a critically important role in maintaining ecosystem health. They are natural biological filters in freshwater and estuarine wetlands; they contribute to the reproductive success of many organisms, some of which are harvested for food; they assist in flood control; and they are prominent elements in the aesthetics and recreational use of freshwater and estuarine habitats. Despite this globally recognized importance, wetlands have faced and continue to face threats from the encroachment of human activities. The Biology of Aquatic and Wetland Plants is a thorough and up-to-date textbook devoted to these plants and their interactions with the environment. The focus is on botanical diversity from the perspective of evolutionary relationships, emphasizing the role of evolution in shaping adaptations to the aquatic environment. By incorporating recent findings on the phylogeny of green plants, with special emphasis on the angiosperms, the text is broadly useful for courses in plant biology, physiology, and ecology.
Chapter 1. Overview
Chapter 2. Evolutionary Relationships Among Aquatic and Wetland Plants
Chapter 3. Wetland Ecosystems and Plant Diversity
Chapter 4. Hydrology
Chapter 5. Critical Features of the Aquatic Environment
Chapter 6. Adaptations for Life in the Aquatic Environment
Chapter 7. Plant Nutrition and Sediment Biogeochemistry
Chapter 8. Reproduction
Chapter 9. Population Biology & Evolutionary Ecology
Chapter 10. Species Interactions
Chapter 11. Plants in the Context of Wetland Ecosystems
Gary Ervin received his B.S. (1996) and Ph.D. (2000) in Biological Sciences from the University of Alabama, in Tuscaloosa. During his undergraduate and doctoral research, he studied the ecology of freshwater wetland plants, publishing several papers on the ecology of the rush, Juncus effusus. After completing his doctoral studies, Dr. Ervin held a postdoctoral research position in the Department of Entomology at the University of Arkansas, Fayetteville. While in Arkansas, he studied plant defense responses to insect herbivores, with an emphasis on oxidative biochemistry of plant-insect interactions. Dr. Ervin began his present faculty position in the Department of Biological Sciences at Mississippi State University in 2001. His research program at Mississippi State University has been focused on better understanding mechanisms influencing plant colonization and persistence, including research on species invasions. Dr. Ervin and his collaborators have worked with invasive plants in forests, wetlands, and prairies, but also have studied interactions between plants and insect biocontrol agents. During his two decades on the faculty at Mississippi State, Dr. Ervin has taught courses on plant ecology, invasion ecology, plant biology, aquatic botany, and global change, and he has published dozens of scientific articles on both terrestrial and wetland plant ecology. Dr. Ervin is a long-time member of the Society of Wetland Scientists (SWS) and is certified as a Professional Wetland Scientist by that organization. At the time of writing this text, he served as a member of the executive committee of the SWS South Central Chapter, on the mentoring committee of the SWS Latin American and Caribbean student mentoring program (HumMentor), and on the SWS education section editorial board for the online resource, Foundations in Wetlands Science.