Ecology is capturing the popular imagination like never before, with issues such as climate change, species extinctions, and habitat destruction becoming ever more prominent. At the same time, the science of ecology has advanced dramatically, growing in mathematical and theoretical sophistication. Here, two leading experts present the fundamental quantitative principles of ecology in an accessible yet rigorous way, introducing students to the most basic of all ecological subjects, the structure and dynamics of populations.
John Vandermeer and Deborah Goldberg show that populations are more than simply collections of individuals. Complex variables such as distribution and territory for expanding groups come into play when mathematical models are applied. Vandermeer and Goldberg build these models from the ground up, from first principles, using a broad range of empirical examples, from animals and viruses to plants and humans. They address a host of exciting topics along the way, including age-structured populations, spatially distributed populations, and metapopulations.