- SNRE Annual Review 2012
- Phase III Document
- Academic Programs
- Undergraduate Study
- Graduate Study
- McGinnies Scholarship
- SNRE Awards
- GIS Certificate
- For Faculty
- Facilities & Resources
Rafe Sagarin co-author of new book: Observation and Ecology
Observation and Ecology
Although modern ecology places a premium on carefully controlled experiments, the field’s roots lie in a long tradition of people observing the world around them. In this new look at ecology, Rafe Sagarin, Adjunct Assistant Professor in SNRE and Associate Research Scientist in the Institute of the Environment at University of Arizona, and Aníbal Pauchard, Associate Professor of plant ecology and invasion biology in the Faculty of Forest Sciences, University of Concepción, Chile, argue for a more open-minded approach to gathering and analyzing data that recognizes the power of observation.
The need to understand and address large-scale environmental problems that are difficult to study in controlled environments—issues ranging from climate change to overfishing to invasive species—is driving the field of ecology in new and important directions. Observation and Ecology documents that transformation, exploring how scientists and researchers are expanding their methodological toolbox to incorporate an array of new and reexamined observational approaches—from traditional ecological knowledge to animal-borne sensors to genomic and remote-sensing technologies—to track, study, and understand current environmental problems and their implications.
The authors paint a clear picture of what observational approaches to ecology are and where they fit in the context of ecological science. They consider the full range of observational abilities we have available to us and explore the challenges and practical difficulties of using a primarily observational approach to achieve scientific understanding. They also show how observations can be a bridge from ecological science to education, environmental policy, and resource management. Throughout the text, other leading scientists—among them Stuart Pimm, Geerat Vermeij, and SNRE student Kristin Wisneski— offer accounts of their own use of observational data and their vision of the future of the field.
Observations in ecology can play a key role in understanding our planet and the consequences of human activities on ecological processes. As the planet changes, the field of ecology must grow and develop to keep pace. This thought-provoking book offers cogent analysis that will motivate and inspire teachers, researchers, students, and conservation leaders who are seeking a more holistic and applicable approach to ecological science.
Observation and Ecology is available from the following online booksellers or through the UA bookstore.