Heterogeneity and Spatial Hierarchies
To apply the traditional scientific method, ecologists ordinarily focus on the mean or central tendency of a data set. For example, a typical hypothesis test would involve demonstrating that the mean is significantly different from a control measurement. However, ecological systems are heterogeneous, and much information may be lost if the variance of a data set is ignored. This chapter shows that a specific prediction of hierarchy theory can be tested by examining how variance changes as measurements are taken across a range of scales.
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