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The Tropical Rain Forest: An Ecological Study

By: Paul Richards

575 pages, B/w photos, figs, tabs

Cambridge University Press

Paperback | Aug 1996 | Edition: 2 | #3223 | ISBN: 0521421942
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NHBS Price: £76.99 $101/€86 approx
Hardback | Aug 1996 | Edition: 2 | #3222 | ISBN: 0521420547
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About this book

The first edition of The Tropical Rain Forest (1952) is firmly established as one of the classics of botanical literature. In this new and revised edition, Richards provides a personal view of the field, based on over sixty years involvement in rain forest ecology. Climatic changes and human pressures have a major impact on the rain forests, and it is now possible, says Richards, to foresee the complete destruction of these vital ecosystems. An important record of the rain forest in the twentieth century.

'... this remarkable book is a unique source of detailed empirical knowledge on the ecology and especially the natural history of the plants and their forests in the wet tropics. In these respects the second edition is much more comprehensive than its predecessor and other, previous publications. The text is lucid, rigorous and readable.' P. S. Ashton, Trends in Ecology and Evolution '... it will stand as a recommended textbook and reference to the subject for decades to come.' John Feltwell, Biologist '... a gratefully received gift.' Ulrich Luttge, Journal of Plant Physiology 'I would have absolutely no hesitation in recommending this new book to anyone who wants to understand rainforest biology; it is an excellent review of its field. And in the impoverished present and future world, it will, as the publisher claims, 'stand as a record of what the rainforest was like in the twentieth century': a sad, but all too accurate, recommendation for this masterly work.' Alan Tye, Malimbus '... a book to be read pleasurably by those who have any interest at all in the living environment of the humid tropics via their profession, recreation or conscience.' Jiro Kikkawa and Len Webb, Pacific Conservation Biology 'This new and completely rewritten version of the classic book ... provides a wide-ranging view of the tropical rainforest.' Quarterly Journal of Forestry 'A worthy testament to a gifted botanist.' M. R. D. Seaward, The Naturalist 'CUP are to be congratulated on the book ... all those with a love of trees should consider getting it.' Arboricultural Journal '... a book to be read pleasurably by those who have any interest at all in the living environment of the humid tropics via their profession, recreation or conscience.' Pacific Conservation Biology Journal 'Overall, this is a formidable reference work providing a substantial summary of vegetational research up to about 1990.' John Barkham, Geography


Preface; 1. Introduction; Part I. Structure and Physiognomy: 2. Structure of primary forest; 3. Regeneration; 4. Trees and shrubs (i) Vegetative features; 5. Trees and shrubs (ii) Reproductive biology; 6. The ground herbs and the dependent synusiae; Part II. The Environment: 7. Climate R. P. D. Walsh; 8. Microclimates and hydrology R. P. D. Walsh; 9. Phenology; 10. Soils of the humid tropics I. C. Baillie; Part III. Floristic Composition of Climax Communities: 11. Composition of primary rain forests (i); 12. Composition of primary rain forests (ii); Part IV. Primary Successions; 13. Primary xeroseres and the recolonization of Krakatau; 14. Hydroseres and freshwater swamp forests; 15. Mangroves and other coastal vegetation; Part V. Tropical Raion Forest Under Limiting Conditions; 16. Rain forest, deciduous forest and savannah; 17. The tropical rain forest at its altitudinal and latitudinal limits; Part VI. Human Impacts and the Tropical Rain Forest; 18. Secondary and deflected successions; 19. Postscript - the future of the tropical rain forest; Appendix 1. Tree recognition in the field and the use of vernacular names; Appendix 2. Application of numerical methods in rain forest P. Grieg-Smith; References; Index of plant names; General index.

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