“The basic principles of physics, chemistry, and biology are encompassed in a common framework by the concept of metabolism (Brown et al, 2004). Metabolism provides a conceptual connection for the physiological processes characterizing the biology of all living things, spanning from individual organisms to the ecology of populations, communities, and finally whole ecosystems.  This common framework allows investigating analogous processes taking place at different scales, making evident the underlying general principle or laws governing the nature of life.” -Ecological Processes Handbook by Luca Palmeri, Alberto Barausse, Sven Erik Jorgensen