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Other titles in the Cambridge Studies in Ecology series:
Ecological Experiments: Purpose, Design and Execution (Cambridge Studies in Ecology)by Nelson G. Hairston
Synopses & Reviews
Ecological Experiments stresses the importance of manipulative field experimentation in ecology as being superior to the observational method. The book begins with a series of ecological questions that can be answered by experiments, such as: what is the importance of competition among scientists? The minimal requirements of experimental design that should be met for satisfactory field experiments are then introduced, and examples of good and poor experiments from the literature are examined in this light along with a consideration of the trade-offs that may be forced on the experiment by the conditions faced in the field. Included are descriptions of experiments in five different kinds of environments: forests, successional habitats, deserts and semideserts, fresh water (divided into lakes, ponds, and streams), and marine environments (divided according to the kind of substrate). Each experiment is discussed from the standpoint of the ecological question being answered and the quality of ecological design. For most of the environments, the experiments are arranged according to the topic level. The final chapter contains discussions of the results in the different environments, and the conclusions that the experiments in each environment permit. It is shown that interpretations of environmental phenomena must be different for each kind of environment, and that a general theory of ecology is unlikely to be obtainable.
Ecological Experiments stresses the importance of field experiments, where variables are manipulated in order to collect data on specific hypotheses, as opposed to the more passive observational method. It introduces a series of ecological questions which can be addressed experimentally and details the minimum requirements of experimental design.
Experiments in five different kinds of environments--forests, successional habitats, deserts and semideserts, fresh water and marine environments--are analyzed from the perspective of manipulative field experimentation in ecology.
Table of Contents
Preface; Acknowledgments; 1. Ecological problems and how they are approached; 2. Minimal requirements of experimental design in ecology; 3. Trade-offs in ecological experimentation; 4. Experiments in forests; 5. Experiments in terrestrial successional communities; 6. Experiments in arid environments; 7. Experiments in fresh water; 8. Experiments in marine environments; 9. Conclusions to be drawn from field experiments; References; Name index; Subject index.
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