We use cookies to enhance your experience on our website. By continuing to use our website, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. You can change your cookie settings at any time. Find out more


Fourth Edition

William D. Bowman, Sally D. Hacker, and Michael L. Cain

June 2018

ISBN: 9781605357973

744 pages

In Stock

Price: £49.99

An easy-to-read text, with an emphasis on quantitative and problem-solving skills



Published by Sinauer Associates, an imprint of Oxford University Press.

The new fourth edition of Ecology maintains its focus on providing an easy-to-read and well-organized text for instructors and students to explore the basics of ecology. This edition also continues with an increasing emphasis on enhancing student quantitative and problem-solving skills. A new Hone Your Problem-Solving Skills series has been added to the set of review questions at the end of each chapter. The questions expose students to hypothetical situations or existing data sets, and allow them to work through data analysis and interpretation to better understand ecological concepts.

  • Introduces students to the beauty and importance of ecology, without presenting them with too much material or boring them with unnecessary detail

New to this edition

  • A new Hone Your Problem-Solving Skills series has been added to the set of review questions at the end of each chapter
  • Additional Analyzing Data exercises on the Companion Website
  • Revised and strengthened key pedagogical features

About the Author(s)

William D. Bowman, University of Colorado at Boulder, Sally D. Hacker, Oregon State University, and Michael L. Cain, New Mexico State University

William D. Bowman is Professor at the University of Colorado at Boulder, affiliated with the Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, Mountain Research Station, and the Institute of Arctic and Alpine Research.

Sally D. Hacker is Professor at Oregon State University, Corvallis, where she has been a faculty member since 2004.

Michael L. Cain, having opted to change careers and focus full-time on writing, is currently affiliated with the Department of Biology at New Mexico State University.

Table of Contents

    1: The Web of Life
    Unit 1: Organisms and Their Environment
    2: The Physical Environment
    3: The Biosphere
    4: Coping with Environmental Variation: Temperature and Water
    5: Coping with Environmental Variation: Energy
    Unit 2: Evolutionary Ecology
    6: Evolution and Ecology
    7: Life History
    8: Behavioral Ecology
    Unit 3: Populations
    9: Population Distribution and Abundance
    10: Population Growth and Regulation
    11: Population Dynamics
    Unit 4: Species Interactions
    12: Predation
    13: Parasitism
    14: Competition
    15: Mutualism and Commensalism
    Unit 5: Communities
    16: The Nature of Communities
    17: Change in Communities
    18: Biogeography
    19: Species Diversity in Communities
    Unit 6: Ecosystems
    20: Production
    21: Energy Flow and Food Webs
    22: Nutrient Supply and Cycling
    Unit 7: Applied and Large-Scale Ecology
    23: Conservation Biology
    24: Landscape Ecology and Ecosystem Management
    25: Global Ecology


"This past fall, I taught a 200-level ecology course at Colby and used Cain et al. as the textbook. I found the test bank questions written by Norman Johnson to be extraordinarily useful. I tend to be skeptical about test bank questions in general, and almost never use them, so it was a very pleasant surprise for me to see how good they were. I didn't actually use them as a test-bank, but chose selected questions to use for in-class review and discussion prompts. The book overall was wonderful, too!" - Judy Stone, Colby College (on the Third Edition)

Additional Resources

For Students

The Ecology Companion Website offers students a wealth of study and review material. Access to the site is included with each new copy of the textbook. The Companion Website includes:

- Chapter Outlines and Summaries
- Hands-On Problem Solving Exercises that provide practical experience working with experimental data and interpreting results from simulations and models
- Analyzing Data Exercises—companions to the in-book exercises that give students extra practice with quantitative skills
- Climate Change Connections explore the links between the ecological concepts and climate change
- Web Extensions expand on the coverage of selected topics introduced in the textbook
- Online Quizzes to check your comprehension of the material covered in each chapter (instructor registration required)
- Web Stats Review—a brief statistics primer for ecology
- Flashcards, Suggested Readings, and Glossary

For Instructors

The Ecology Instructor's Resource Library offers a variety of resources to aid instructors in course planning, lecture development, and student assessment, including:

- Figures & Tables: All of the textbook's figures (including photos) and tables are provided as JPEGs, both with and without balloon captions, optimized for use in presentations. Complex figures are provided in both whole and split versions.
- PowerPoint Resources: Three different PowerPoint presentations are provided for each chapter of the textbook:
* Figures: All figures and tables from each chapter, with titles and full captions.
* Lecture: A complete lecture outline, including selected figures.
* Hands-On Problems: Instructor versions of all Hands-On Problems are provided in ready-to use presentations.
- Hands-On Problem-Solving Exercises: In addition to the instructor versions mentioned above, the student versions of the exercises from the Companion Website, with answers, are included in Microsoft Word format.
- Answers to Analyzing Data Exercises: Complete answers for all of the online Analyzing Data companion exercises.

Related Titles