Castro−Huber: Marine Biology, Fourth EditionFront MatterPreface
© The McGraw−Hill Companies, 2003
p r e f a c e
ther because the course is not intended tosatisfy general education requirements orbecause students already have some scien-tific background. To balance the needs of instructors teaching courses with and without prerequisites in basic biology orother sciences, we have designed thebook to provide as much flexibility aspossible in the amount of basic sciencecoverage, the order in which topics arepresented, and in overall emphasis andapproach. We have tried to meet theneeds and expectations of a wide variety of students, from the humanities major who likes to go fishing to the biology major considering a career in marine sci-ence. We also hope that a variety of read-ers other than university students find thebook useful and enjoyable. Another feature of
fourth edition, is its
global, non-regional perspective.
That the world’s oceans andseas function as a vast integrated system isamong the most important messages of our book. For many students this is a new perspective. One aspect of our global ap-proach is the deliberate inclusion of exam-ples from many different regions andecosystems so that as many students aspossible will find something relevant totheir local areas or places they have vis-ited. We hope this will stimulate them tothink about the many relationships be-tween their own shores and the one worldocean that so greatly influences our lives.
CHANGES IN THEFOURTH EDITION
Perhaps the most significant changes inthis edition of
treatment of microorganisms.
We haveadopted an increasingly accepted three-domain classification system that consid-ers bacteria and archaea to be as differentfrom each other as they are from eukary-otic organisms. An entire chapter, Chap-People around the world are fascinatedand inspired by marine life. With theglobal trend of migration to the coast, thegrowth of such pastimes as scuba diving,recreational fishing, and aquarium keep-ing, and the increasing accessability of travel to exotic seaside destinations, morepeople than ever before are able to experi-ence firsthand the sea’s beauty, mystery,and excitement. Even those not lucky enough to do so can learn about the life of the ocean not only through the many excellent film and television documen-taries and photo essays that are available,but more and more over the Internet, where one can now follow the day-by-day progress of research expeditions, listen to whale songs, or view underwater scenes inreal time. Partly as a result of this, aware-ness of human impacts on the oceans andof the importance of the oceans to our af-fairs continues to grow. This interest inthe oceans is reflected in the continuingpopularity of marine biology and relatedsubjects in high schools, colleges and uni- versities, and adult education programs. While keeping in mind the range of potential users of this text, we have writ-ten it primarily for lower-division, non-science majors at colleges and universities. These students may enroll in marine biol-ogy not only out of personal interest in thesubject, but also to fulfill a general sciencerequirement. Many will take no other col-lege science course. We have made a spe-cial effort to include the solid basic sciencecontent needed in a general educationcourse, including fundamental principlesof biology, the physical sciences, and thescientific method. Our general aim was tointegrate this basic science content with astimulating, up-to-date overview of ma-rine biology. We hope this approachdemonstrates the relevance of the physicalsciences to biology and makes the study of all sciences less intimidating. At the same time, we recognize thatgeneral science content will not beneeded in all marine biology courses, ei-ter 5, is now devoted to microorganismsin recognition of the growing evidence of the importance of these organisms in theocean. New and updated information onthe role of microorganisms and viruses inthe marine environment is presented inseveral other chapters. As in previous editions we have up-dated the text to reflect
recent events, newresearch, and changes in perspective.
Thefourth edition presents new informationon phylogenetics, nucleic acid sequenc-ing, molecular adaptations to pressure indeep-sea organisms, the feeding habits of whales, bioturbation, endangered marinespecies, the global effects of marine pol-lution and toxic algal blooms on humanhealth, hydrothermal vents, invasivespecies, and many other topics. The cov-erage of salt marshes and mangroves, sea-grass beds, and competing hypotheses toexplain the structure of coral-reef fishcommunities has been expanded. Thereare new boxed readings on symbiotic bac-teria, the use of nucleic acid sequencingin studying marine life, and the diversity of the deep-sea benthos. As in previouseditions we have updated facts and fig-ures, corrected errors, and reorganizedsome sections to provide more balancedcoverage and improve the logical se-quence. At the request of several review-ers, we have slightly raised the level of thetext while being careful to preserve theinformal writing style that our readers tellus they enjoy. We have continued to improve theart program with many new or revised il-lustrations and photographs, and the in-terior design has again been improved tomake better use of space and improvereadability. The home page for
continues to develop and thefourth edition more than previous edi-tions has been written with the opportu-nities for online learning specifically inmind. The home page can be found at: www.mhhe.com/marinebiology (click onthis book’s cover).