Advances in Morphometrics
Hardcover ISBN: 0306453010
Morphometrics is a rapidly evolving field concerned with the study of measurements of organisms. Forty-five contributions to the July 1993 meeting are arranged in two parts. The first addresses theory and methods data acquisition, landmark methods, and outlines with and without landmarks. The second contains papers on comparing shapes of organisms: geographic, low taxonomic level and intraspecific comparisons, and high taxonomic level comparisons. A sampling of topics: Eigenshape analysis of left ventricular outlines from contrast ventriculograms; spline curves and surfaces for data modeling; sexual dimorphism in the craniofacial skeleton of modern humans; and morphometric pattern and feeding mode in emperor fishes. Annotation c. by Book News, Inc., Portland, Or.
Alfred Russel Wallace
A Rediscovered Life
Paperback ISBN: 0979014190
For years Alfred Russel Wallace was little more than an obscure adjunct to Charles Darwin’s theory of evolution. Remembered only for prompting Darwin to write On the Origin of Species in 1859 by writing his own letter proposing a theory of natural selection, Wallace was rightly dubbed by one biographer “the forgotten naturalist.” In 1998 Sahotra Sarkar bemoaned Wallace’s “lapse into obscurity,” noting that "at least in the 19th century literature, the theory of evolution was usually referred to as ‘the Darwin and Wallace theory’. In the 20th century, the theory of evolution has become virtually synonymous with Darwinism or neo-Darwinism.” While the complaint still has a ring of truth, a decade of recent interest in Wallace has done much to bring him back from history’s crypt of forgotten figures. This shouldn’t suggest unanimity of opinion, however. Some regard him as a heretic, others as merely a misguided scientist-turned-spiritualist, still others as a prescient figure anticipating the modern Gaia hypothesis. Perhaps Martin Fichman’s phrase hits closest and most persistently to the truth—“the elusive Victorian.” Can the real Wallace be found? If so, what might we learn in that rediscovery? The provocative thesis of this new biography is that Wallace, in developing his unique brand of evolution, presaged modern intelligent design theory. Wallace’s devotion to discovering the truths of nature brought him through a lifetime of research to see genuine design in the natural world. This was Wallace’s ultimate heresy, a heresy that exposed the metaphysical underpinnings of the emerging Darwinian paradigm.
Completing the Transition to Land
Hardcover ISBN: 0126764603
Amniote Origins integrates modern systematic methods with studies of functional and physiological processes, and illustrates how studies of paleobiology can be illuminated by studies of neonatology. For this reason, comparative anatomists and physiologists, functional morphologists, zoologists, and paleontologists will all find this unique volume very useful. Inspired by the prospect of integrating fields that have long been isolated from one another, Amniote Origins provides a thorough and interdisciplinary synthesis of one of the classic transitions of evolutionary history. Key Features * Integrates modern systematic methods with studies of functional and physiological processes * Illustrates how studies of paleobiology can be illuminated by studies of neonatology * Provides a thorough and interdisciplinary synthesis of one of the classic transitions of evolutionary history
The Annotated Origin
A Facsimile of the First Edition of On The Origin of Species
Paperback ISBN: 0674060172
Charles Darwin’s On the Origin of Species is the most important and yet least read scientific work in the history of science. Now James T. Costa—experienced field biologist, theorist on the evolution of insect sociality, and passionate advocate for teaching Darwin with Darwin in a society where a significant proportion of adults believe that life on earth has been created in its present form within the last 10,000 years—has given a new voice to this epochal work. By leading readers line by line through the Origin, Costa brings evolution’s foundational text to life for a new generation. The Annotated Origin is the edition of Darwin’s masterwork used in Costa’s course at Western Carolina University and in Harvard’s Darwin Summer Course at Oxford. A facsimile of the first edition of 1859 is accompanied by Costa’s extensive marginal annotations, drawing on his extensive experience with Darwin’s ideas in the field, lab, and classroom. This edition makes available an accessible, useful, and practical resource for anyone reading the Origin for the first time or for those who want to reread it with the insights and perspective that a working biologist can provide.
The Art of Plant Evolution
Paperback ISBN: 1842464175
This beautiful mix of art and science offers a breathtaking look at the way that contemporary scientific discoveries are changing our understanding of plants and plant evolution. Nearly one hundred and fifty paintings, by eighty-four artists, are reproduced in full color to present a sweeping overview of the evolution of plants worldwide. The paintings cover a wide range of plants, including ferns, fungi, conifers, algae, mosses, and a rich bounty of flowering plants; accompanying each painting is up-to-date evolutionary information—drawn from recent DNA analysis—plus observations by each of the artists and details about modern plant classification. Written for the nonspecialist, The Art of Plant Evolution is sure to enchant inquisitive green thumbs and gardeners.
Aspects of the Genesis and Maintenance of Biological Diversity
Hardcover ISBN: 0198548842
This book is a unique collection of evolutionary and ecological perspectives in the study of biodiversity. The book traces past landmarks, current questions, and future trends in biodiversity research ranging from the evaluation of the fossil record and molecular phylogenies in looking at the genesis of diversity to population, community, and ecosystem-level approaches in understanding patterns of species persistence. Subject reviews, case studies, and discussions of techniques are combined to produce a state-of-the-art volume that will be welcomed by students and researchers in fields related to biodiversity, as well as staffs of zoos and botanical gardens.
At Home in the Universe
The Search for Laws of Self-Organization and Complexity
Paperback ISBN: 0195111303
The author examines the concept of self-organization, or as he calls it "order for free," discussing how it occurs more frequently in nature than originally believed
At the Water's Edge
Fish With Fingers, Whales With Legs, and How Life Came Ashore but Then Went Back to Sea
Paperback ISBN: 0684856239
Everybody Out of the Pond At the Water's Edge will change the way you think about your place in the world. The awesome journey of life's transformation from the first microbes 4 billion years ago to Homo sapiens today is an epic that we are only now beginning to grasp. Magnificent and bizarre, it is the story of how we got here, what we left behind, and what we brought with us. We all know about evolution, but it still seems absurd that our ancestors were fish. Darwin's idea of natural selection was the key to solving generation-to-generation evolution -- microevolution -- but it could only point us toward a complete explanation, still to come, of the engines of macroevolution, the transformation of body shapes across millions of years. Now, drawing on the latest fossil discoveries and breakthrough scientific analysis, Carl Zimmer reveals how macroevolution works. Escorting us along the trail of discovery up to the current dramatic research in paleontology, ecology, genetics, and embryology, Zimmer shows how scientists today are unveiling the secrets of life that biologists struggled with two centuries ago. In this book, you will find a dazzling, brash literary talent and a rigorous scientific sensibility gracefully brought together. Carl Zimmer provides a comprehensive, lucid, and authoritative answer to the mystery of how nature actually made itself.