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Historical Biogeography

Historical Biogeography

An Introduction

Jorge V. Crisci, Liliana Katinas, Paula Posadas

ISBN 9780674010598

Publication date: 06/15/2003

Though biogeography may be simply defined--the study of the geographic distributions of organisms--the subject itself is extraordinarily complex, involving a range of scientific disciplines and a bewildering diversity of approaches. For convenience, biogeographers have recognized two research traditions: ecological biogeography and historical biogeography.

This book makes sense of the profound revolution that historical biogeography has undergone in the last two decades, and of the resulting confusion over its foundations, basic concepts, methods, and relationships to other disciplines of comparative biology. Using case studies, the authors explain and illustrate the fundamentals and the most frequently used methods of this discipline. They show the reader how to tell when a historical biogeographic approach is called for, how to decide what kind of data to collect, how to choose the best method for the problem at hand, how to perform the necessary calculations, how to choose and apply a computer program, and how to interpret results.


  • With a welcome shift to the Southern Hemisphere, Crisci, Katinas, and Posadas comprehensively explore the discipline of historical biogeography, distinguishing between, and linking, historical and ecological biogeography. They offer a nice introduction to the field, with chapters exploring various approaches to the subject such as phylogenetics, cladistics, and experimental biogeography...Overall, this is a very thorough, extensively researched, and well-written book.

    —L. S. Rigg, Choice


  • Jorge V. Crisci is Director of the Laboratory of Systematics and Evolutionary Biology at the Museum of Natural Sciences of La Plata, Argentina.
  • Liliana Katinas is Assistant Professor of Botany and Biogeography at La Plata National University, Argentina.
  • Paula Posadas is Assistant Professor of Taxonomy and Biogeography at Patagonia National University, Argentina.

Book Details

  • 264 pages
  • 7 x 9-1/4 inches
  • Harvard University Press