Ecological Niches: Linking Classical and Contemporary Approaches (Interspecific Interactions) (Paperback)

Ecological Niches: Linking Classical and Contemporary Approaches (Interspecific Interactions) By Jonathan M. Chase, Mathew A. Leibold Cover Image
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Why do species live where they live? What determines the abundance and diversity of species in a given area? What role do species play in the functioning of entire ecosystems? All of these questions share a single core concept—the ecological niche. Although the niche concept has fallen into disfavor among ecologists in recent years, Jonathan M. Chase and Mathew A. Leibold argue that the niche is an ideal tool with which to unify disparate research and theoretical approaches in contemporary ecology.

Chase and Leibold define the niche as including both what an organism needs from its environment and how that organism's activities shape its environment. Drawing on the theory of consumer-resource interactions, as well as its graphical analysis, they develop a framework for understanding niches that is flexible enough to include a variety of small- and large-scale processes, from resource competition, predation, and stress to community structure, biodiversity, and ecosystem function. Chase and Leibold's synthetic approach will interest ecologists from a wide range of subdisciplines.

About the Author

Mathew A. Leibold is professor in the Department of Integrative Biology at the University of Texas.

Product Details
ISBN: 9780226101804
ISBN-10: 0226101800
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
Publication Date: July 1st, 2003
Pages: 221
Language: English
Series: Interspecific Interactions