Biogeography, first published in 1983, is one of the most comprehensive text and general reference books in the natural sciences. The Fifth Edition builds on the strengths of previous editions to provide an insightful and integrative explanation of how geographic variation across terrestrial and marine environments has influenced the fundamental processes of immigration, extinction, and evolution to shape species distributions and nearly all patterns of biological diversity. It is an empirically and conceptually rich text that illustrates general patterns and processes using examples from a broad diversity of life forms, time periods and aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems. Its fundamental assertion is that patterns in biological diversity make little sense unless viewed within an explicit geographic context. Starting from principal patterns and fundamental principles, and assuming only a rudimentary knowledge of biology, geography, and Earth history, the text explains the relationships between geographic variation in biological diversity and the geological, ecological, and evolutionary processes that have produced them. The use of color illustrations, evaluated and optimized for colorblind readers, has transformed our abilities to illustrate key concepts and empirical patterns in the geography of nature. By providing a description of the historical development of biogeography, evolution and ecology, along with a comprehensive account of the principal patterns, fundamental principles and recent advances in each of these fields of science, our ultimate vision is for Biogeography to serve as the centerpiece of a one- or two-semester core course in biological diversity.
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