Avian Invasions: The Ecology and Evolution of Exotic Birds

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Overview

Biological invaders represent one of the primary threats to the maintenance of global biodiversity, human health, and the success of human economic enterprises. The continuing globalization of our society ensures that the need to understand the process of biological invasion will only increase in the future. There is also a growing recognition that the study of biological invaders provides a unique insight into basic questions in ecology and evolution.

The study of exotic birds has had a particularly long history and has come to represent a fascinating intersection between the study of biological invasions, avian conservation biology, and basic principles of ecology and evolution. Avian Invasions summarizes and synthesizes this unique historical record and unravels the insights that the study of exotic birds brings to all three of these research strands. It includes chapters on the well-known contributions of exotic bird study to ecological science, and on the post-establishment evolution of introduced bird populations. The result is the most comprehensive picture yet of the invasion process.

Avian Invasions is aimed at professional avian biologists and ornithologists as well as graduate students of avian ecology, evolution and conservation. It also appeals to a more general audience of invasion ecologists.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"An extraordinary book on ecology and evolutionary biology of a special set of birds. Any biologist whose research deals even remotely with introduced species will find much of value. The coverage of life history, range expansion, and changes in niche will appeal to ecologists. The genetics and evolution of introduced birds will be of interest to evolutionary biologists. Without question, this book should be read by all invasion biologists and ornithologists. It would be extremely useful for a graduate seminar."—Integrative and Comparative Biology

"A useful and timely review of invasion ecology research in the Aves."— The Bulletin of the British Ecological Society

"An impressive literature on introductions of non-native birds with many graphical comparisons and ecological evaluations." — Conservation Biology

"Overall, this is a comprehensive, up-to-date, and exciting book. It provides a much-needed stimulus for a greater focus on avian invasions and their effects on native biodiversity, but it also illustrates how the study of exotic birds can help to advance our general understanding of invasion ecology. I predict that it will become a classic text in invasion ecology, and I strongly commend it to all who are interested in this important and growing field."— Mick Clout, PLOS Biology

"Avian Invasions is lucidly written and contains abundant ecological and evolutionary wisdom. A reader does not have to wander because all the needed biological concepts are briefly, critically, and clearly articulated. Careful reading of this book will significantly benefit budding and experienced invasive ecologists alike in refining their research plans or in obtaining new ideas."—Biological Invasions

"1n this book, three leading experts combine theory with a rigorous analysis of the evidence to ask what are the causes and consequences of avian invasions. And they succeed formidably. The book is a must read for anyone interested in biological invasions, and will inspire students and academic researchers alike. It is informative, comprehensive, rigorous, stimulating and highly readable."—Trends in Ecology and Evolution

"Avian Invasions is lucidly written and contains abundant ecological and evolutionary wisdom. A reader does not have to wander because all the needed biological concepts are briefly, critically, and clearly articulated. Careful reading of this book will significantly benefit budding and experienced invasive ecologists alike in refining their research plans or in obtaining new ideas."—Biological Invasions

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780199232543
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press
  • Publication date: 10/4/2009
  • Series: Oxford Avian Biology Series
  • Pages: 320
  • Sales rank: 1,035,266
  • Product dimensions: 6.30 (w) x 9.30 (h) x 0.80 (d)

Meet the Author

Tim Blackburn is Head of the Institute of Zoology, the research division of the Zoological Society of London. He is a Visiting Professor at the University of Oxford and an Honorary Professor at the University of Birmingham. His research primary research interests concern invasion biology, macroecology, and extinction.

Julie Lockwood is an Associate Professor at Rutgers University. Her interests are in the ecology and evolution of biological invaders, and the conservation of threatened birds.

Phillip Cassey is a research fellow in Systems Ecology at the University of Birmingham. He is primarily interested in the application of realistic statistical models for understanding ecological processes; particularly of extinction and invasion among birds.

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Table of Contents

1 Introduction to the Study of Exotic Birds 1

1.1 Introduction 1

1.2 A Brief History of Exotic Birds 3

1.3 The Invasion Pathway 10

1.4 Analysing the Invasion Process 16

1.5 Précis 21

2 Transport and Introduction 27

2.1 Introduction 27

2.2 Patterns in the Transport and Introduction of Birds 30

2.3 Correlates of Transport and Introduction Separately 42

2.4 What Do We Learn about the Early Stages of Invasion from Studying Introduced Birds? 45

2.5 Conclusions 47

3 The Role of Contingency in Establishment Success 51

3.1 Introduction 51

3.2 Propagule Pressure and Establishment Success 57

3.3 Other Associations of Propagule Pressure 67

3.4 Conclusions 74

4 The Role of Species Traits in Establishment Success 77

4.1 Introduction 77

4.2 The 'All-or-None' Pattern: Does it Really Exist? 79

4.3 Intrinsic Characteristics as Determinants of Establishment Success 82

4.4 Conclusions 103

5 The Role of Location in Establishment Success 107

5.1 Introduction 107

5.2 Environmental Matching 108

5.3 Human Commensalisms 110

5.4 Biotic Interactions 112

5.5 Conclusions 128

6 Geographic Range Expansion of Exotic Birds 131

6.1 Introduction 131

6.2 Patterns of Spread 132

6.3 Models of Spread 146

6.4 Conclusions 156

7 The Ecology of Exotic Birds in Novel Locations 161

7.1 Introduction 161

7.2 Exotic Bird Species Richness 163

7.3 Changes in Diversity Patterns across Space after Invasion 168

7.4 Large-scale Patterns in the Distribution and Abundance of Exotic Birds 173

7.5 Impacts of Exotic Birds on Native Species and Communities 176

7.6 Conclusions 184

8 The Genetics of Exotic Bird Introductions 187

8.1 Introduction 187

8.2 Population Genetics in the Context of Exotic Bird Introductions 188

8.3 Studies of Genetic Variation between Exotic Bird Populations 199

8.4 The Role of Genetic Variation in Establishment Success and Range Expansion 204

8.5 Introgressive Hybridization of Exotic Birds with Natives 211

8.6 Conclusions 213

9 The Evolution of Exotic Birds 215

9.1 Introduction 215

9.2 Evolution in Response to Climatic Shifts 217

9.3 Evolution in Response to Novel Interspecific Associations 229

9.4 Conclusions 241

10 Lessons from Exotic Birds 243

10.1 Introduction 243

10.2 'Ockham's Razor': All Else being Equal, the Simplest Solution is the Best 244

10.3 False Dichotomies 253

10.4 'Somewhere, Something Incredible is Waiting to be Known' (Carl Sagan) 254

10.5 Conclusions 257

Bibliography 259

Index 297

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