The Ecology of Seashores: 1st Edition (Hardback) book cover

The Ecology of Seashores

1st Edition

By George A. Knox

CRC Press

576 pages

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Hardback: 9780849300080
pub: 2000-12-21
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The Ecology of Seashores explores the complex shore environment. It covers the ways in which representative species have adapted to life in a constantly changing environment in terms of their interactions, the control of community structure, and how energy and materials are cycled in different ecosystems.

Written by an eminent marine biologist, this work emphasizes ecological processes and the use of systems analysis in understanding such processes. He gives complete coverage of the ecology of all seashore types: rocky shores, soft shores, sandy beaches, and estuaries at an advanced level. When appropriate, the author uses the energy circuit language of symbols and diagrams developed by H.T. Odum as a basis of understanding.

The first comprehensive review and synthesis of the research on shore ecosystems, the book lends order to some of the most complex ecosystem types and presents a wide range of geographical examples. If you are involved in researching or managing coastal zones, The Ecology of Seashores provides exhaustive coverage of the essential background information you need.


"This unique textbook…emphasizes ecological process and systems analysis. Six chapters synthesize complex systems…adaptations to shore life, control of community structure, and energy flow and material cycling. The final chapter presents a number of ecosystem models in the energy circuit language of H.T. Odum." -American Fisheries Society

Table of Contents

The Environment


Shore Environments and Stresses on the Shore

Salient Features of the Shore Environment

Patterns of Zonation on the Shore


Hard Shores

Zonation Patters on the Hard Shores

Zonation Patterns on Representative Shores

The Causes of Zonation

Hard Shore Microalgae

Hard Shore Micro- and Meiofauna

Rocky Shore Lichens

Hard Shore Macroalgae

Key Faunal Components

Special Habitats


Soft Shores

Soft Shores as a Habitat

The Physio-Chemical Environment

Soft Shore Types

Biologic Modification of the Sediments


Soft Shore Primary Producers

Soft Shore Fauna

Biological Modification of the Sediments

Microbial Ecology and Organic Detritus

Nutrient Cycling

Estuarine Shelf Interactions


Adaptations to Shore Life


Ecological Niches on the Shore

The Establishment of Zonation Patterns

The Maintenance of Zonation Patterns


Control of Community Structure


Hard Shores

Soft Shores

Synthesis of Factors Involved in Determining Community Structure


Energy Flow, Food Webs, and Material Cycling


Food Sources

Energy Budgets for Individual Species


Secondary Production

P:B Rations and Production Efficiency

Relative Contribution of Soft Shore Benthic Infauna to Secondary Production

Community Metabolism

Trophic Structure and Food Webs

Carbon Flow Models

Stable Isotopes and Food Web Analysis

Top-Down and Bottom-Up Control of Community Structure


Ecosystem Models


Hard Shores

Sand Beaches

Intertidal Mud Flat in the Lynher Estuary, Cornwall, UK

Salt Marshes

Seagrass Ecosystem Model

Mangrove Ecosystems


Network Analysis

Potential Applications of the Ascendency Concept

Emergy Analysis



About the Series

CRC Marine Science

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Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
NATURE / Ecology
SCIENCE / Life Sciences / Biology / Marine Biology