Preface Part I. Introduction 1: Introducing the thought experiment Part II. The Fundamental processes 2: Energy Flow 3: Multiple guilds 4: Tradeoffs and biodiversity 5: Ecological hypercycles - covering a planet with life 6: Merging of organismal and ecological physiology 7: Photosynthesis 8: Carbon sequestration Part III. Emerging systems 9: Nutrient cycling as an emergent property 10: Historical contingency and the development of planetary ecosystems 11: From processes to systems Glossary References
Winner of The Marsh Ecology Book of the Year Award 2007
David M. Wilkinson is Reader in Environmental Science in the School of Biological and Earth Sciences at Liverpool John Moores University. He has wide interests within the environmental and biological sciences, where much of his research is on theoretical topics within evolutionary ecology, biogeography and Earth systems science. In addition he is involved in more empirical research on soil protozoa, environmental archaeology and the history of science. His teaching covers a diverse range of topics from the history of geology to forensic archaeology, but centres on various aspects of ecology.
`Review from previous edition This is a remarkabe book at many levels...Put simply, this should be seen as a key text in any undergraduate ecology/environment course. It's one of the most interesting texts published for some time - a must-buy for the library.' Ecological and Environmental Education, The Teaching Ecology Group, 2007, Dr Paul Ganderton `Wilkinson has succeeded in writing an extraordinarily readable and accessible book that examines some of the very basic questions underlying ecology in its widest sense. There are relatively few books that encourage the reader to shake free from the shackles of conventional thinking and move along new and illuminating paths. Wilkinson has achieved this, and his book deserves to be read, assimilated, and argued over by all those interested in ecology, from undergraduates to senior academics.' British Ecological Society Bulletin, May 2006. `In this lucidly written book, Dave Wilkinson introduces the ecological building blocks needed for life to thrive on a planet and explains how a self-regulating 'Gaia' system can emerge from them.' Tim Lenton `This is a broad and wide ranging yet scrupulously scientific book on ecology. It is just what is needed for the understanding of the fast unfolding disaster of global climate change. I unhesitatingly recommend it to all concerned biologists and climate scientists.' James Lovelock `Fundamental Processes in Ecology is an intriguing but iconoclastic introduction...[it] provides a novel and thought-provoking organizational framework for ecology...' TRENDS in Ecology and Evolution, March 2007, J.A. Jones `The unconventional theoretical perspective of this clearly written, concise volume will shed fresh light on areas of one's own interest. Readers will find his or her own surprises and illuminations. For me, the exclamation point was Wilkinson's list of fundamental guilds: autotrophs, decomposers, and parasites.' Joel E. Cohen, Rockefeller University and Columbia University, New York, New York. The Quarterly Review of Biology, Volume 82, No.2, June 2007 `Wilkinson does a fine job explaining fundamental ecological processes such as energy flow, multiple guilds, carbon sequestration, etc...' Journal of Sedimentary Research, David Wilkins, Boise State University, USA