Nature's Patterns

Exploring Her Tangled Web

This greatly expanded second edition of "Nature's Patterns", with twice the page count, expands upon three basic premises. They are:

1-Everything, including ourselves, is connected to everything else.

2-Conservation is the act of identifying and preserving these interconnections.

3-Hope for mankind comes when enough people acquire a deep connectivity consciousness about Nature.

The book asks you to think about Nature as many highly connected ecosystems that operate according to six organizing principles. These principles become both constraints and opportunities for you to act as a steward of Nature by identifying, studying, and preserving her energy networks. In the language of the naturalist and through examples, case studies, and a basic analytic toolkit, the book employs the principles of modern system science to provide you with conservation ideas for preserving Nature’s interconnected ecosystems.

Interested readers will include students, educators, government conservation workers, thinkers, and all of those who wish to acquire a deeper understanding of how Nature’s ecosystems work. The ideas in this book will be useful to resource planners and managers within environmental organizations and government services. The material in this book has been used to teach a "Patterns In Nature" course to advanced junior and senior high school students. In addition, the material on Nature's energy networks has been used in college level courses. If you are a teacher, a park ranger, a docent, or a tour guide, the book’s consistent theme that “everything in Nature is connected” can be passed on to the youth and adults who receive your message.

The book is available in both soft cover and Kindle editions.

The Kindle version of this 292 page book is designed, formatted, and tested using the new Kindle Fire and Kindle Fire HD readers as well as all of the available free downloadable versions of Amazon Kindle readers for the PC, Mac, and Android tablet or phone. The book is fixed format and set in the horizontal (landscape) orientation. All images are in color.

The soft cover version of this book contains 275 pages and measures 6 inches by 9 inches. All images are black and white.

Bill Graham is a Marine Biologist who has worked in the US and Mexico for 30 years. He is an educator, a researcher, a writer, and a Nature photographer. In addition to writing books, Bill blogs on the subject of patterns in Nature, works on two conservation projects, oversees an environmental education program for local schools, and conducts special programs for talented Mexican youth.

Table of Contents


Nature's Voices -- Three World Views

Nature's Aesthetic Voice

Nature's Spiritual Voice

Nature's Logical Voice

Speaking With One Voice

Nature's Organizing Principles - A Different Way Of Thinking

Organizing Principle #1 - Everything In Nature Is Interconnected

Organizing Principle #2 - Nature Is Composed Of Complex Systems

Organizing Principle #3 - Nature is Both Ordered And Chaotic

Organizing Principle #4 - Energy Is The Operating Currency Of Nature

Constructal theory

Nature's Network Architectures

Regular Networks

Random Networks

Small-World Networks

Complex (Scale-free) Networks

Organizing Principle #5 - Nature's Systems Are Usually Self Organizing and Emergent

Organizing Principle #6 - Much of Nature is Self Similar


Organizing Principles - A Summary

Common Patterns In Nature

Stars, Bubbles, and Beehives

Sheep To Sunflowers


Behavior and Intelligence

Case Studies - Challenges And Successes

Challenge #1 - Killing Cormorants

Challenge #2 - The Salmon Wars

Challenge #3 - The Conservation of Quiet

Challenge #4 - Grazing

Challenge #5 - San Pedro River

Good or Bad? - Invasive Species

Success Story #1 - Saving Sand Dunes National Park

Success Story #2 - Sea Otter Recovery

Success Story #3 - Holistic Ranching

Success Story #4 - Non-lethal Predator Control

Success Story #5 - Santa Cruz Island Fox and Eagle Recovery

Epilogue: A Connectivity Consciousness

Appendix #1 - List of Web Resources

Appendix #2 - An Analytical Toolkit

Using Pictures To Describe Nature

Using Characteristic Numbers To Describe Nature

Portraying Nature Using Graphs

Linear Graphs - Slope and Intercept

Non-linear Graphs

Exponents And Logarithms

The Ubiquitous Power Law

Degree Distributions In Nature

Computer Simulations

About The Author

Nature’s Tangled Web