Laws, theories, and patterns in ecology
University of California Press, 1 de ago. de 2009 - 232 páginas
Physics and chemistry are distinguished from biology by the way generalizations are codified into theories tested by observation and experimentation. Some theories have been sufficiently tested to qualify as laws. In ecology, generalizations worthy of being called theories are less common because observations and experimentation are difficult and exceptions are more common. In this book, Walter K. Dodds enumerates generalizations in ecology. Introductory material describes how the practice of science, in general, and ecology specifically, yields theories and laws. Dodds also discusses why such ideas are only useful if they have predictive ability, and delineates the scope of these generalizations and the constraints that limit their application. The result is a short book that delves deeply into important ecological ideas and how they predict and provide understanding.
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How Laws Will Be Approached
Physiological Constraints of Organisms
Variability and Organisms
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abiotic animals approach aquatic axiomatic bacteria behavior biodiversity biological biomass carbon cells chemical community ecology community structure competition complex concept considered constraints contingencies detritivores difficult Difficulties with Prediction disturbance diversity Dodds dynamics Ecol ecological ecological systems ecologists ecosys ecosystem function effects empirical energy environment equation evolution evolutionary example exponential extinction fish flux food webs fractal fundamental global growth habitats heterogeneity ideal gas law increase indirect interactions individual influence interaction chains intermediate disturbance hypothesis invasive species island biogeography lakes law applies Laws and Theories lead limitation mathematical mechanisms mechanistic metabolic rate metapopulation microbes natural neutral theory nutrient cycling observation occur organisms patches photosynthesis physical phytoplankton plants population potential predation predictive ability primary producers principles problem processes production properties proposed relationship relative requirement resource spatial species interactions stability stoichiometry streams Strong Patterns temperature temporal terrestrial Theories Most Applicable Tilman tion trophic cascades trophic levels variable variance