BL/ES 306 - Ecosystem Management
This course is about using ecological principles to manage ecosystems. Even though humans depend on ecosystem goods and services, e.g. for food, nutrient cycling and clean water the human record of ecosystem management is mixed at best. Although mild small-scale human disturbances show ecosystems to be resistant and resilient, severe large-scale disturbances have resulted in ecosystem degradation. You will learn how to best manage and restore the biotic and abiotic factors that makeup and interact over time to form complex systems. Though ecosystems are to varying degrees intricate, dynamic and unique, they can be managed using fundamental principles. These principles have wide application in the environmental sciences and for natural resource managers. You will learn about the importance of adaptive management techniques, especially in the light of expanding human population, climate change and industrial developments which stress ecosystems.