Ecological Homeostasis

Christopher J. Paradise and A. Malcolm Campbell

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Individual organisms contribute to nutrient cycling in ecological systems, which is shown to be a mechanism of homeostasis at that level. The phosphorus and nitrogen cycles are used to illustrate effects of changes in populations or communities on the cycling of these nutrients. Major disturbances such as deforestation and global climate change disrupt nutrient cycles and ecological system homeostasis. Data are examined to determine effects of deforestation on nutrient cycling. Increasing atmospheric carbon dioxide and global climate change are disrupting ecological systems’ homeostasis, and several studies are used to show how this is happening, including changes in primary production, temperature and precipitation patterns. This book also discusses the role of individual species in filtering contaminants and pollutants from ecological systems.

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Christopher J. Paradise

Christopher J. Paradise is professor of biology and environmental studies at Davidson College. He teaches introductory biology, ecology, entomology, and topical seminars on ecotoxicology and renewable natural resources. He also occasionally leads a study abroad program in India.  His research evaluates anthropogenic factors that influence insect biodiversity at a variety of scales.  His current research interests include effects of land use patterns on pollinator communities in parks.

A. Malcolm Campbell

A. Malcolm Campbell teaches biology at Davidson College, NC. He received national and international education awards: Genetics Society of America (2013); American Association for the Advancement of Science (2012); and American Society for Cell Biology (2006). He was the founding co-editor in chief of CBE Life Sciences Education; founding director of Genome Consortium for Active Teaching (GCAT); and member of the American Society for Cell Biology governing council (2012–2014).