Listen to Coronavirus Patient Zero
An interdisciplinary research unit consisting of 30 teams in the natural, economic and social sciences analyzed biodiversity and ecosystem services of a mountain rainforest ecosystem in the hotspot of the tropical Andes, with special reference to past, current and future environmental changes. The group assessed ecosystem services using data from ecological field and scenario-driven model experiments, and with the help of comparative field surveys of the natural forest and its anthropogenic replacement system for agriculture.
The book offers insights into the impacts of environmental change on various service categories mentioned in the Millennium Ecosystem Assessment (2005): cultural, regulating, supporting and provisioning ecosystem services. Examples focus on biodiversity of plants and animals including trophic networks, and abiotic/biotic parameters such as soils, regional climate, water, nutrient and sediment cycles. The types of threats considered include land use and climate changes, as well as atmospheric fertilization. In terms of regulating and provisioning services, the emphasis is primarily on water regulation and supply as well as climate regulation and carbon sequestration. With regard to provisioning services, the synthesis of the book provides science-based recommendations for a sustainable land use portfolio including several options such as forestry, pasture management and the practices of indigenous peoples. In closing, the authors show how they integrated the local society by pursuing capacity building in compliance with the CBD-ABS (Convention on Biological Diversity - Access and Benefit Sharing), in the form of education and knowledge transfer for application.
Countless ants transport and deposit seeds and thereby influence the survival, death, and evolution of many plant species. In higher plants, seed dispersal by ants (myrmecochory) has appeared many times independently in different lineages. More than 3000 plant species are known to utilize ant assistance to be planted. Myrmecochory is a very interesting and rather enigmatic form of mutualistic ant-plant associations. This phenomenon is extremely complex, because there are hundreds of ant species connected with hundreds of plant species. This book effectively combines a thorough approach to investigating morphological and physiological adaptations of plants with elegant field experiments on the behaviour of ants. This monograph is a first attempt at collecting information about morphology, ecology and phenology of ants and plants from one ecosystem. The book gives readers a panoramic view of the hidden, poorly-known interrelations not only between pairs of ants and plant species, but also between species communities in the ecosystem. The authors have considered not just one aspect of animal-plant relationships, but have tried to show them in all their complexity. Some aspects of the ant-plant interactions described in the book may be of interest to botanists, others to zoologists or ecologists, but the entire work is an excellent example of the marriage of these biological disciplines.
Agroecosystems in a Changing Climate considers the consequences of changes in the atmosphere and climate on the integrity, stability, and productivity of agroecosystems. The book adopts a novel approach by bringing together theoretical contributions from ecologists and the applied interpretations of agriculturalists. Drawing these two approaches together, the book provides the theoretical underpinning that guides scientists on what phenomena to look for, looking beyond first-order responses in the creation of sustainable agroecosystems. This unique approach provides an interpretation of ecological insights and general theory, and then relates them to agroecosystem performance.
Each section of the book combines general principles of response with an examination of the applied consequences. The authors cover the supply of resources necessary to sustain agriculture in the future and discuss the incidence of pests, weeds, diseases, and their control. They provide an understanding of how the population biology of organisms will change and the adaptations that might be possible. The book also explores plant breeding solutions and the capacity for adaptation that exists in plant populations. In addition to the full chapters, the book includes Special Example chapters that deal in more detail with specific issues.
Presenting a global perspective of climate change effects on agricultural production, Agroecosystems in a Changing Climate establishes connections between the immediate effects of change and the longer-term processes that will ultimately determine the consequences for agroecosystems and therefore the potential for adaptation.
Deepwater Horizon Articles
Deepwater Horizon Books