By Stephen P. Hubbell
Despite its perfect significance and the specter of its worldwide crash, biodiversity is still poorly understood either empirically and theoretically. This bold ebook offers a brand new, normal impartial conception to give an explanation for the beginning, upkeep, and lack of biodiversity in a biogeographic context.
beforehand biogeography (the examine of the geographic distribution of species) and biodiversity (the examine of species richness and relative species abundance) have had mostly disjunct highbrow histories. during this publication, Stephen Hubbell develops a proper mathematical idea that unifies those fields. whilst a speciation strategy is integrated into Robert H. MacArthur and Edward O. Wilson's now classical conception of island biogeography, the generalized conception predicts the lifestyles of a common, dimensionless biodiversity quantity. within the concept, this primary biodiversity quantity, including the migration or dispersal fee, thoroughly determines the steady-state distribution of species richness and relative species abundance on neighborhood to massive geographic spatial scales and momentary to evolutionary time scales.
even if impartial, Hubbell's conception is however in a position to generate many nonobvious, testable, and remarkably exact quantitative predictions approximately biodiversity and biogeography. in lots of methods Hubbell's thought is the ecological analog to the impartial thought of genetic flow in genetics. The unified impartial idea of biogeography and biodiversity should still stimulate study in new theoretical and empirical instructions by way of ecologists, evolutionary biologists, and biogeographers.
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Extra resources for The Unified Neutral Theory of Biodiversity and Biogeography (MPB-32) (Monographs in Population Biology)
And Catherine T. MacArthur origin, the Andrew okay. Mellon starting place, the Pew Charitable Trusts, the loo Simon Guggenheim beginning, and various different foundations, corporations, and members for aiding or aiding within the study on tropical forests that has supplied a lot of the knowledge mentioned during this publication. I additionally supply particular because of Ira Rubinoff, director of the Smithsonian Tropical study Institute, and Elizabeth Losos, director xiii of the heart for Tropical wooded area technological know-how, for ethical and logistical aid of the long term tropical wooded area dynamics community. ultimately, i'm very thankful to Sam Elworthy, existence Sciences Editor at Princeton collage Press, for directing me in the course of the maze of publishing this e-book, and to Alice Calaprice for her notable copyediting. A disclaimer and apology to my readers should be so as. This booklet was once by no means meant as a overview of the literature on any topic, together with biodiversity or biogeography, conception or empirical paintings. accordingly, in case your seminal paintings isn't really pointed out, please forgive my blunders of omission. The ﬁnite nature of time, this e-book, and my mind are responsible. Athens, Georgia August 2000 xiv The Uniﬁed impartial concept of Biodiversity and Biogeography CHAPTER ONE MacArthur and Wilson’s Radical thought it is a booklet a few new normal idea of biodiversity in a geographical context. I deﬁne biodiversity to be synonymous with species richness and relative species abundance in house and time. Species richness is just the full variety of species in a deﬁned house at a given time, and relative species abundance refers to their commonness or rarity. this can be a much less inclusive deﬁnition of biodiversity than is usually utilized in coverage circles, yet extra in line with the classical self-discipline of ecology because the scientiﬁc learn of the distribution and abundance of species and their explanations. Fragments of a normal idea of biodiversity abound in ecological theories of island biogeography, metapopulations, and relative species abundance; yet in my view, there haven't but been any quite profitable syntheses. one of the different types of variety styles I search to give an explanation for with this new idea are these illustrated in ﬁgure 1. 1. This graph indicates styles of relative species abundance in a various array of ecological groups, starting from an open-ocean planktonic copepod neighborhood, to a tropical bat group, to a neighborhood of rainforest timber, to the relative abundances of British breeding birds. every one line is a plot of the logarithm of the share relative abundance of species at the y-axis opposed to the rank in abundance of the species at the x-axis, from most common on the left (low ranks) to rarest at the correct (high ranks). The curves vary in lots of methods, together with species richness, the measure of three CHAPTER ONE Fig. 1. 1. styles of relative species abundance in a various array of ecological groups. Species in every one neighborhood are ranked in percent relative abundance from most common (left) to rarest (right).