Since the advent of agriculture approximately 12,000 years ago, human activity has created a unique set of ecosystems. However, the recent development of world markets, rapid technological advances, and other changes to farming practices have led to hugely increased pressures on farm habitats and organisms. Global human populations are rising and diets are becoming ever more complicated, leading to unrelenting requirements for increased levels of food production.
Natural biotopes are becoming increasingly fragmented as agricultural activities expand around them. <"Agroecosystems> " now occur from the tropics to subarctic environments and comprise systems as varied as annual crops, perennial grasslands, orchards, and agroforestry systems. They presently cover almost
40% of the terrestrial land surface and significantly shape landscapes at a global scale. This key addition to the OUP Biology of Habitats Series provides a novel perspective on agroecosystems, summarising our current understanding of the basic and applied aspects of these important and complex habitats, whilst focusing on environmental concerns in the context of global change.
The Biology of Agroecosystemsis is for both senior undergraduate and graduate students taking courses in agroecology, farmland ecology, conservation, and agriculture as well as the many professional ecologists, conservation biologists, and land managers requiring a concise overview of agroecology.