understanding complex ecosystem dynamics

Understanding Complex Ecosystem Dynamics
Author: William S. Yackinous
Publisher: Academic Press
Release Date: 2015-06-03
Pages: 436
ISBN:
Available Language: English, Spanish, And French
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Understanding Complex Ecosystem Dynamics: A Systems and Engineering Perspective takes a fresh, interdisciplinary perspective on complex system dynamics, beginning with a discussion of relevant systems and engineering skills and practices, including an explanation of the systems approach and its major elements. From this perspective, the author formulates an ecosystem dynamics functionality-based framework to guide ecological investigations. Next, because complex system theory (across many subject matter areas) is crucial to the work of this book, relevant network theory, nonlinear dynamics theory, cellular automata theory, and roughness (fractal) theory is covered in some detail. This material serves as an important resource as the book proceeds. In the context of all of the foregoing discussion and investigation, a view of the characteristics of ecological network dynamics is constructed. This view, in turn, is the basis for the central hypothesis of the book, i.e., ecological networks are ever-changing networks with propagation dynamics that are punctuated, local-to-global, and perhaps most importantly fractal. To analyze and fully test this hypothesis, an innovative ecological network dynamics model is defined, designed, and developed. The modeling approach, which seeks to emulate features of real-world ecological networks, does not make a priori assumptions about ecological network dynamics, but rather lets the dynamics develop as the model simulation runs. Model analysis results corroborate the central hypothesis. Additional important insights and principles are suggested by the model analysis results and by the other supporting investigations of this book – and can serve as a basis for going-forward complex system dynamics research, not only for ecological systems but for complex systems in general. Provides a fresh interdisciplinary perspective, offers a broad integrated development, and contains many new ideas Clearly explains the elements of the systems approach and applies them throughout the book Takes on the challenging and open issues of complex system network dynamics Develops and utilizes a new, innovative ecosystem dynamics modeling approach Contains over 135 graphic illustrations to help the reader visualize and understand important concepts

Modelling Complex Ecological Dynamics
Author: Fred Jopp
Publisher: Springer Science & Business Media
Release Date: 2011-02-11
Pages: 397
ISBN:
Available Language: English, Spanish, And French
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Model development is of vital importance for understanding and management of ecological processes. Identifying the complex relationships between ecological patterns and processes is a crucial task. Ecological modelling—both qualitatively and quantitatively—plays a vital role in analysing ecological phenomena and for ecological theory. This textbook provides a unique overview of modelling approaches. Representing the state-of-the-art in modern ecology, it shows how to construct and work with various different model types. It introduces the background of each approach and its application in ecology. Differential equations, matrix approaches, individual-based models and many other relevant modelling techniques are explained and demonstrated with their use. The authors provide links to software tools and course materials. With chapters written by leading specialists, “Modelling Complex Ecological Dynamics” is an essential contribution to expand the qualification of students, teachers and scientists alike.

New Models For Ecosystem Dynamics And Restoration
Author: Richard J. Hobbs
Publisher:
Release Date: 2009-01-07
Pages: 352
ISBN:
Available Language: English, Spanish, And French
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"Conceptual models based on alternative stable states and restoration thresholds can help inform restoration efforts. This title explores how conceptual models of ecosystem dynamics can be applied to the recovery of degraded systems. It discusses the basic concepts and models and explores implications of scientific research on restoration practice." -- BOOK PUBLISHER WEBSITE.

Understanding Ecological Response To Disturbance
Author: Nancy Shackelford
Publisher:
Release Date: 2017
Pages:
ISBN:
Available Language: English, Spanish, And French
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Ecosystems in the modern world face a vast array of disturbances, from globally shifting abiotic conditions, to increasingly variable extreme natural events, to high intensity discrete human-caused disturbances. Well-developed, applicable theoretical frameworks on how ecosystems can respond to and withstand these disturbances are needed for adequate management of valued ecological systems. To date, the most promising theoretical development for understanding ecological response to complex sets of disturbances is resilience. Ecological resilience acknowledges non-linear ecosystem behavior, incorporates the role of slowly changing environmental parameters in ecological dynamics, and offers one of the few potential methods to predict, and avoid, impending ecological collapse. However, as ecological resilience has evolved conceptually to include social, political, and economic fields, it has become increasingly difficult to clearly define in, and apply to, managed ecosystems. This dissertation pairs ecological resilience with other, well-established attributes of ecological response to disturbance, namely resistance, persistence, and recovery. By doing so, we can clearly define and quantify each attribute in a range of ecosystem types and over a variety of ecological scales. In Chapter 1, we use microcosm communities to test the relationship between one potential mechanism, landscape connectivity, and multiple attributes of ecological response to disturbance including resistance, resilience, and recovery. We find that each attribute responds uniquely to connectivity, and that generalizing the role of connectivity over all three may give an inaccurate prediction of how ecosystems may respond to individual disturbances. In Chapter 2, we experimentally investigate the presence of early warning indicators of approaching critical thresholds. Using water table drawdown treatments in bog, we test for critical slowing and increased autocorrelation as the bog approaches a transition to forest. We find that critical slowing is clear in composition and moss cover, but that autocorrelation is not apparent. The decoupling of critical slowing and increased autocorrelation could be due to a number of complex ecosystem dynamics, all of which are common in ecosystem management globally. Thus, early warning indicators likely need further development if they are to become applicable. In Chapter 3, we observationally study how conservation management actions may increase or decrease ecological resilience. In particular, we explore how invasive species management intensity correlates with changes in functional redundancy, response diversity, and spatial occurrence of regime shifts in Garry oak meadows. We find that more intense management correlates with less area lost to woody encroachment and increases in functional redundancy through time. However, the relationship was strongly mediated by individual landscape settings. Finally, in Chapter 4, we scale up to a provincial study, investigating persistence of ecosystems and large mammal species in the face of the continuous pressures of land use change. In the results from all four chapters, it is clear that individual attributes of ecological response to disturbance, i.e. resistance, persistence, resilience, or recovery, all play unique roles in ecosystem dynamics. Additionally, the metric chosen to quantify each attribute can play a pivotal role in how we interpret observed dynamics. The work in this dissertation highlights that we cannot understand or predict ecological response to disturbance without clear, measurable concepts. Around a single state of interest, resilience is only one among a suite of attributes that are important to understand. Its additional strength, of potentially predicting the occurrence of ecological thresholds, is still being developed as we explore methods of quantification and application in individual ecosystems.

Self Organization In Complex Ecosystems   MPB 42
Author: Ricard V. Solé
Publisher: Princeton University Press
Release Date: 2012-01-06
Pages: 384
ISBN:
Available Language: English, Spanish, And French
EBOOK SYNOPSIS:

Can physics be an appropriate framework for the understanding of ecological science? Most ecologists would probably agree that there is little relation between the complexity of natural ecosystems and the simplicity of any example derived from Newtonian physics. Though ecologists have long been interested in concepts originally developed by statistical physicists and later applied to explain everything from why stock markets crash to why rivers develop particular branching patterns, applying such concepts to ecosystems has remained a challenge. Self-Organization in Complex Ecosystems is the first book to clearly synthesize what we have learned about the usefulness of tools from statistical physics in ecology. Ricard Solé and Jordi Bascompte provide a comprehensive introduction to complex systems theory, and ask: do universal laws shape the structure of ecosystems, at least at some scales? They offer the most compelling array of theoretical evidence to date of the potential of nonlinear ecological interactions to generate nonrandom, self-organized patterns at all levels. Tackling classic ecological questions--from population dynamics to biodiversity to macroevolution--the book's novel presentation of theories and data shows the power of statistical physics and complexity in ecology. Self-Organization in Complex Ecosystems will be a staple resource for years to come for ecologists interested in complex systems theory as well as mathematicians and physicists interested in ecology.

The Geological Record Of Ecological Dynamics
Author: National Research Council
Publisher: National Academies Press
Release Date: 2005-02-13
Pages: 214
ISBN:
Available Language: English, Spanish, And French
EBOOK SYNOPSIS:

In order to answer important questions about ecosystems and biodiversity, scientists can look to the past geological recordâ€"which includes fossils, sediment and ice cores, and tree rings. Because of recent advances in earth scientists’ ability to analyze biological and environmental information from geological data, the National Science Foundation and the U.S. Geological Survey asked a National Research Council (NRC) committee to assess the scientific opportunities provided by the geologic record and recommend how scientists can take advantage of these opportunities for the nation’s benefit. The committee identified three initiatives for future research to be developed over the next decade: (1) use the geological record as a “natural laboratory†to explore changes in living things under a range of past conditions, (2) use the record to better predict the response of biological systems to climate change, and (3) use geologic information to evaluate the effects of human and non-human factors on ecosystems. The committee also offered suggestions for improving the field through better training, improved databases, and additional funding.

Regenerative Urban Design And Ecosystem Biomimicry
Author: Maibritt Pedersen Zari
Publisher: Routledge
Release Date: 2018-05-20
Pages: 260
ISBN:
Available Language: English, Spanish, And French
EBOOK SYNOPSIS:

It is clear that the climate is changing and ecosystems are becoming severely degraded. Humans must mitigate the causes of, and adapt to, climate change and the loss of biodiversity, as the impacts of these changes become more apparent and demand urgent responses. These pressures, combined with rapid global urbanisation and population growth mean that new ways of designing, retrofitting and living in cities are critically needed. Incorporating an understanding of how the living world works and what ecosystems do into architectural and urban design is a step towards the creation and evolution of cities that are radically more sustainable and potentially regenerative. Can cities produce their own food, energy, and water? Can they be designed to regulate climate, provide habitat, cycle nutrients, and purify water, air and soil? This book examines and defines the field of biomimicry for sustainable built environment design and goes on to translate ecological knowledge into practical methodologies for architectural and urban design that can proactively respond to climate change and biodiversity loss. These methods are tested and exemplified through a series of case studies of existing cities in a variety of climates. Regenerative Urban Design and Ecosystem Biomimicry will be of great interest to students, professionals and researchers of architecture, urban design, ecology, and environmental studies, as well as those interested in the interdisciplinary study of sustainability, ecology and urbanism.

Ecological Modeling For Resource Management
Author: Virginia H. Dale
Publisher: Springer Science & Business Media
Release Date: 2006-04-18
Pages: 328
ISBN:
Available Language: English, Spanish, And French
EBOOK SYNOPSIS:

With the use of ecological models, managers and decision makers can make sure that the ecological systems affected by their decisions are accurately represented. Unfortunately, the most relevant ecological science and modeling techniques are often not used because managers are not familiar with them or find them inappropriate for their circumstances. The authors of this volume hope to close the gap between the state of the art in ecological modeling and the state of the practice in the use of models as decision-making tools. It will serve as a readable introduction to modeling for people involved in resource management and will also review specific applications of interest to more experienced modelers. The first chapters detail several successful uses of ecological models in resource management. There are then five pairs of chapters addressing important issues in ecological modeling, including barriers to the use of modeling in decision making, evolving approaches in the field, effective use of data, the toolkit approach to management, and the various scientific and technological investments required for productive modeling.; Ecologists and other scientists will learn how best to focus their research for practical, real-world applications, and resource managers and other practitioners will learn the most appropriate methods of understanding dynamic processes and making projections about the implications of their decisions.

Foundations Of Ecological Resilience
Author: Lance H. Gunderson
Publisher: Island Press
Release Date: 2012-07-16
Pages: 496
ISBN:
Available Language: English, Spanish, And French
EBOOK SYNOPSIS:

Ecological resilience provides a theoretical foundation for understanding how complex systems adapt to and recover from localized disturbances like hurricanes, fires, pest outbreaks, and floods, as well as large-scale perturbations such as climate change. Ecologists have developed resilience theory over the past three decades in an effort to explain surprising and nonlinear dynamics of complex adaptive systems. Resilience theory is especially important to environmental scientists for its role in underpinning adaptive management approaches to ecosystem and resource management. Foundations of Ecological Resilience is a collection of the most important articles on the subject of ecological resilience—those writings that have defined and developed basic concepts in the field and help explain its importance and meaning for scientists and researchers. The book’s three sections cover articles that have shaped or defined the concepts and theories of resilience, including key papers that broke new conceptual ground and contributed novel ideas to the field; examples that demonstrate ecological resilience in a range of ecosystems; and articles that present practical methods for understanding and managing nonlinear ecosystem dynamics. Foundations of Ecological Resilience is an important contribution to our collective understanding of resilience and an invaluable resource for students and scholars in ecology, wildlife ecology, conservation biology, sustainability, environmental science, public policy, and related fields.

Wildlife And Ecosystem Dynamics
Author:
Publisher:
Release Date: 2006
Pages: 17
ISBN:
Available Language: English, Spanish, And French
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Dynamic Sustainabilities
Author: Melissa Leach
Publisher: Routledge
Release Date: 2010
Pages: 212
ISBN:
Available Language: English, Spanish, And French
EBOOK SYNOPSIS:

Introducing a new pathways approach for understanding and responding to sustainability challenges, this title explores practical ways forward for building pathways to sustainability.

Complexity In Landscape Ecology
Author: David G. Green
Publisher: Springer Nature
Release Date: 2020-07-02
Pages: 256
ISBN:
Available Language: English, Spanish, And French
EBOOK SYNOPSIS:

This book examines key concepts and analytical approaches in complexity theory as it applies to landscape ecology, including complex networks, connectivity, criticality, feedback, and self-organisation. It then reviews the ways that these ideas have led to new insights into the nature of ecosystems and the role of processes in landscapes. The updated edition explores innovations in ecotechnology, including automated monitoring, big data, simulation and machine learning, and shows how they are revolutionizing ecology by making it possible to deal more effectively with complexity. Addressing the topic in a progression of ideas from small to large, and from simple to sophisticated, the book examines the implications of complexity for major environmental issues of our time, particularly the urgencies of climate change and loss of biodiversity. Understanding ecological complexity is crucial in today’s globalized and interconnected world. Successful management of the world’s ecosystems must combine models of ecosystem complexity with biodiversity, environmental, geographic, and socioeconomic data. The book examines the impact of humans on landscapes and ecosystems, as well as efforts to embed sustainability, commerce and industrial development in the larger context of ecosystem services and ecological economics. Well-established as researchers in the field, the authors provide a new perspective on current and future understanding of complexity in landscape ecology. The new edition offers a non-technical account of the topic, so it is both accessible and informative for general readers. For students of ecology, it provides a fresh approach to classical ideas.

Serengeti III
Author: A. R. E. Sinclair
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
Release Date: 2009-05-15
Pages: 512
ISBN:
Available Language: English, Spanish, And French
EBOOK SYNOPSIS:

Serengeti National Park is one of the world’s most diverse ecosystems, a natural laboratory for ecology, evolution, and conservation, with a history that dates back at least four million years to the beginnings of human evolution. The third book of a ground- breaking series, Serengeti III is the result of a long-term integrated research project that documents changes to this unique ecosystem every ten years. Bringing together researchers from a wide range of disciplines—ecologists, paleontologists, economists, social scientists, mathematicians, and disease specialists— this volume focuses on the interactions between the natural system and the human-dominated agricultural system. By examining how changes in rainfall, wildebeest numbers, commodity prices, and human populations have impacted the Serengeti ecosystem, the authors conclude that changes in the natural system have affected human welfare just as changes in the human system have impacted the natural world. To promote both the conservation of biota and the sustainability of human welfare, the authors recommend community-based conservation and protected-area conservation. Serengeti III presents a timely and provocative look at the conservation status of one of earth’s most renowned ecosystems.

High Arctic Ecosystem Dynamics In A Changing Climate
Author:
Publisher: Academic Press
Release Date: 2008-05-16
Pages: 596
ISBN:
Available Language: English, Spanish, And French
EBOOK SYNOPSIS:

High-Arctic Ecosystem Dynamics in a Changing Climate is based on data collected during the past 10 years by Zackenberg Ecological Research Operations (ZERO) at Zackenberg Research Station in Northeast Greenland. This volume covers the function of Arctic ecosystems based on the most comprehensive long-term data set in the world from a well-defined Arctic ecosystem. Editors offer a comprehensive and authoritative analysis of how climate variability is influencing an Arctic ecosystem and how the Arctic ecosystems have inherent feedback mechanisms interacting with climate variability or change. The latest research on the functioning of Arctic ecosystems Supplements current books on arctic climate impact assessment as a case study for ecological specialists Discusses the complex perpetuating effects on Earth Vital information on modeling ecosystem responses to understand future climates

Integrating Hydrology  Ecosystem Dynamics  And Biogeochemistry In Complex Landscapes
Author: J. D. Tenhunen
Publisher: Wiley-Blackwell
Release Date: 1999-08-03
Pages: 367
ISBN:
Available Language: English, Spanish, And French
EBOOK SYNOPSIS:

In recent decades, the biosphere has become increasingly stressed, often beyond the point where the internal structure and function of ecosystems are sustained. We have experienced an intensified “exploration” of natural system resources to support agricultural and forest production, to provide water for human consumption, to supply the needs of industrial processes, and to provide, in addition, attractive, diverse landscapes for recreation and tourism. Exceeding thresholds via anthropogenic disturbance that results in degradation of ecosystems is dangerous, since the system-level effects and feedbacks (e.g., soil erosion, famine, polluted drinking water, etc.) are highly undesirable. Finding appropriate compromises in resource use that satisfy existing competitive interests and result in sound environmental management, especially in densely populated regions, requires an improved understanding of the trade-offs that accompany changes in “exploitation” or altered resource allocation at regional and landscape scales. Progress on landscape-level understanding of coupled water, carbon, and nitrogen budgets is limited by a lack of commitment to a rigorous development and application of synthetic techniques (e.g., strongly linked remote sensing studies, geographic information system applications, computer simulation modeling, and ecosystem experimentation) more than by basic site-level measurement alone. Possible research approaches that will contribute to new use of ecosystem knowledge in a landscape and regional context were considered by this Dahlem Workshop. The importance of conducting improved landscape and regional assessment of ecosystem function as input to global scale efforts of the International Geosphere-Biosphere Programme is a major theme of this book.

Discontinuities In Ecosystems And Other Complex Systems
Author: Craig R. Allen
Publisher: Columbia University Press
Release Date: 2008-07-01
Pages: 288
ISBN:
Available Language: English, Spanish, And French
EBOOK SYNOPSIS:

Following the publication of C. S. Holling's seminal work on the relationship between animal body mass patterns and scale-specific landscape structure, ecologists began to explore the theoretical and applied consequences of discontinuities in ecosystems and other complex systems. Are ecosystems and their components continuously distributed and do they adhere to scaling laws, or are they discontinuous and more complex than early models would have us believe? The resulting propositions over the structure of complex systems sparked an ongoing debate regarding the mechanisms generating discontinuities and the statistical methods used for their detection. This volume takes the view that ecosystems and other complex systems are inherently discontinuous and that such fields as ecology, economics, and urban studies greatly benefit from this paradigm shift. Contributors present evidence of the ubiquity of discontinuous distributions in ecological and social systems and how their analysis provides insight into complex phenomena. The book is divided into three sections. The first focuses on background material and contrasting views concerning the discontinuous organization of complex systems. The second discusses discontinuous patterns detected in a number of different systems and methods for detecting them, and the third touches on the potential significance of discontinuities in complex systems. Science is still dominated by a focus on power laws, but the contributors to this volume are convinced power laws often mask the interesting dynamics of systems and that those dynamics are best revealed by investigating deviations from assumed power law distributions. In 2008, a grand conference on resilience was held in Stockholm, hosting 600 participants from around the world. There are now three big centers established with resilience, the most recent one being the Stockholm Resilience Center, with others in Australia (an international coral reef center), Arizona State University's new sustainability center focusing on anthropology, and Canada's emerging social sciences and resilience center. Activity continues to flourish in Alaska, South Africa, and the Untied Kingdom, and a new center is forming in Uruguay.

Ecosystem Dynamics And Management After Forest Die   Off  A Global Synthesis With Conceptual State   And   Transition Models
Author:
Publisher:
Release Date: 2017
Pages:
ISBN:
Available Language: English, Spanish, And French
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Abstract: Broad‐scale forest die‐off associated with drought and heat has now been reported from every forested continent, posing a global‐scale challenge to forest management. Climate‐driven die‐off is frequently compounded with other drivers of tree mortality, such as altered land use, wildfire, and invasive species, making forest management increasingly complex. Facing similar challenges, rangeland managers have widely adopted the approach of developing conceptual models that identify key ecosystem states and major types of transitions between those states, known as "state‐and‐transition models" (S&T models). Using expert opinion and available research, the development of such conceptual S&T models has proven useful in anticipating ecosystem changes and identifying management actions to undertake or to avoid. In cases where detailed data are available, S&T models can be developed into probabilistic predictions, but even where data are insufficient to predict transition probabilities, conceptual S&T models can provide valuable insights for managing a given ecosystem and for comparing and contrasting different ecosystem dynamics. We assembled a synthesis of 14 forest die‐off case studies from around the globe, each with sufficient information to infer impacts on forest dynamics and to inform management options following a forest die‐off event. For each, we developed a conceptual S&T model to identify alternative ecosystem states, pathways of ecosystem change, and points where management interventions have been, or may be, successful in arresting or reversing undesirable changes. We found that our diverse set of mortality case studies fit into three broad classes of ecosystem trajectories: (1) single‐state transition shifts, (2) ecological cascading responses and feedbacks, and (3) complex dynamics where multiple interactions, mortality drivers, and impacts create a range of possible state transition responses. We integrate monitoring and management goals in a framework aimed to facilitate development of conceptual S&T models for other forest die‐off events. Our results highlight that although forest die‐off events across the globe encompass many different underlying drivers and pathways of ecosystem change, there are commonalities in opportunities for successful management intervention.

Inland Navigation System Planning
Author: National Research Council
Publisher: National Academies Press
Release Date: 2001-03-30
Pages: 129
ISBN:
Available Language: English, Spanish, And French
EBOOK SYNOPSIS:

In 1988, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers began an investigation of the benefits and costs of extending several locks on the lower portion of the Upper Mississippi River-Illinois Waterway (UMR-IWW) in order to relieve increasing waterway congestion, particularly for grain moving to New Orleans for export. With passage of the Flood Control Act of 1936, Congress required that the Corps conduct a benefit-cost analysis as part of its water resources project planning; Congress will fund water resources projects only if a project's benefits exceed its costs. As economic analysis generally, and benefit-cost analysis in particular, has become more sophisticated, and as environmental and social considerations and analysis have become more important, Corps planning studies have grown in size and complexity. The difficulty in commensurating market and nonmarket costs and benefits also presents the Corps with a significant challenge. The Corps' analysis of the UMR-IWW has extended over a decade, has cost roughly $50 million, and has involved consultations with other federal agencies, state conservation agencies, and local citizens. The analysis has included many consultants and has produced dozens of reports. In February 2000, the U.S. Department of Defense (DOD) requested that the National Academies review the Corps' final feasibility report. After discussions and negotiations with DOD, in April 2000 the National Academies launched this review and appointed an expert committee to carry it out.

The Economics Of Complex Spatial Systems
Author: A. Reggiani
Publisher: Elsevier
Release Date: 1998-05-05
Pages: 283
ISBN:
Available Language: English, Spanish, And French
EBOOK SYNOPSIS:

This book argues that complexity theory offers new departures for (spatial-) economic modelling. It offers a broad overview of recent advances in non-linear dynamics (catastrophe theory, chaos theory, evolutionary theory and so forth) and illustrates the relevance of this new paradigm on the basis of several illustrations in the area of space-economy. The empirical limitations - inherent in the use of non-linear dynamic systems approaches - are also addressed. Next, the application potential of biocomputing (in particular, neural networks and evolutionary algorithms) is stressed, while various empirical model results are presented. The book concludes with an agenda for further research.

Coral Reef Fishes
Author: Peter F. Sale
Publisher: Gulf Professional Publishing
Release Date: 2006-08-03
Pages: 549
ISBN:
Available Language: English, Spanish, And French
EBOOK SYNOPSIS:

Coral Reef Fishes is the successor of The Ecology of Fishes on Coral Reefs. This new edition includes provocative reviews covering the major areas of reef fish ecology. Concerns about the future health of coral reefs, and recognition that reefs and their fishes are economically important components of the coastal oceans of many tropical nations, have led to enormous growth in research directed at reef fishes. This book is much more than a simple revision of the earlier volume; it is a companion that supports and extends the earlier work. The included syntheses provides readers with the current highlights in this exciting science. * An up-to-date review of key research areas in reef fish ecology, with a bibliography including hundreds of citations, most from the last decade * Authoritative and provocative chapters written to suggest future research priorities * Includes discussions of regulation of fish populations, dispersal or site fidelity of larval reef fishes, sensory and motor capabilities of reef fish larvae, and complexities of management of reef species and communities