The Biology of Freshwater Wetlands (Biology of Habitats) (Paperback)
Global wetlands exhibit significant differences in both hydrology and species composition and range from moss-dominated arctic peatlands to seasonally-flooded tropical floodplains. They are increasingly recognized for the important services that they provide to both the environment and human society such as wildlife and fish production, nutrient filtering, and carbon sequestration. A combination of low oxygen levels and dense plant canopies present particular challenges for organisms living in this aquatic habitat. This concise textbook discusses the universal environmental and biological features of wetland habitats, with an emphasis on wetland plants and animals and their adaptations. It also describes the functional features of wetlands - primary production, litter decomposition, food webs, and nutrient cycling - and their significance locally and globally. The future of wetlands is examined, including the potential threats of global climate change and invasive species, as well as their restoration and creation. This new edition maintains the structure and style of the first, but is fully updated throughout with new chapters on invasive species, restoration/creation, global climate change, and the value of wetlands.
Dr. Arnold van der Valk is a professor in the Department of Ecology, Evolution and Organismal Biology at Iowa State University. He has done research on a variety of wetlands in North America, Europe, Asia and South America. His primary research interests are the dynamics of wetland vegetation, wetlands as nutrients sinks, and landscape differentiation within wetlands. He has been teaching courses wetland ecology for over 30 years.