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Volume 7 (2014): Issue 1 (January 2014)
MEDITERRANEAN LANDSCAPES, Guest Editors: Stefan Schindler and Linda Olsvig-Whittaker

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Volume 6 (2013): Issue 2 (December 2013)

Volume 6 (2013): Issue 1 (January 2013)

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Volume 4 (2011): Issue 3 (August 2011)

Volume 4 (2011): Issue 2 (April 2011)

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Volume 3 (2010): Issue 1 (June 2010)

Volume 2 (2009): Issue 2 (December 2009)

Volume 2 (2009): Issue 1 (June 2009)

Volume 1 (2008): Issue 2 (December 2008)

Volume 1 (2008): Issue 1 (June 2008)

Journal Details
Format
Journal
eISSN
1805-4196
ISSN
1803-2427
First Published
20 Jun 2008
Publication timeframe
3 times per year
Languages
English

Search

Volume 1 (2008): Issue 1 (June 2008)

Journal Details
Format
Journal
eISSN
1805-4196
ISSN
1803-2427
First Published
20 Jun 2008
Publication timeframe
3 times per year
Languages
English

Search

5 Articles
Open Access

Ecological Networks are an Issue for All of US

Published Online: 08 Aug 2012
Page range: 7 - 13

Abstract

Ecological Networks are an Issue for All of US

The concept of ecological networks is not new. Ecological networks have been developed in several European countries, including in Estonia during the 1970s and 1980s and in former Czechoslovakia during the 1980s. In these countries, a strong tradition in land-use planning had created the institutional environment for allocating functions at the landscape scale and habitats were becoming increasingly fragmented due to economic development. We now recognise this as the translation of landscape ecological knowledge in homogenisation and fragmentation processes in the landscapes of Europe that diminished ecosystem functions and natural populations. Fragmentation explains much of the decline in natural species, and we now realize that, for many natural species, existing nature reserves and national parks are too small (Somma, 2006). The concept of ecological connectivity is implicit in several international conventions (e.g. Ramsar convention, Bern Convention), European agreements (Habitats and Species directives), and related EU policy implementation (Natura 2000). It has also become operational in national and European strategies (National Ecological Networks, the Pan-European Ecological Network and Pan European Biological and Landscape Diversity Strategy (PEBLDS).

The meaning and the application of the ecological network concept has changed over the past decade, with emphasis shifting from nature protection towards sustainable development for a region as a whole that integrates biodiversity issues. The observed change in thinking originates from the discourse in the international policy arena of the Convention on Biodiversity, the World Summit on Sustainable Development, and the Millennium Development Goals, which perceived the environment as making a contribution to sustainable development, rather than as something with intrinsic value to be protected from use. Implementation of these international agendas is increasingly guided by the ecosystem approach. This approach can be regarded as a strategy for the management of land, water and living resources that promotes conservation and sustainable use in an equitable way. One consequence of perceiving an ecological network as a means towards sustainable development is the increasing number and diversity of stakeholders and land-use interests that need to be incorporated into the design and that should be part of the management process. In addition, it is evident that the institutionalisation of such a landscape change will greatly benefit from the overall support of the stakeholders, or as Bennett (2004) puts it: "No programme of the breadth and ambition of an ecological network can achieve results without the active support of local communities and key stakeholders.

Open Access

Adopting the Precautionary Principle in Designing and Managing Natura 2000 Areas (Exemplified by the Conservation of the Butterfly Maculinea Nausithous in a Rural Landscape North of Dresden (Saxony))

Published Online: 08 Aug 2012
Page range: 14 - 22

Abstract

Adopting the Precautionary Principle in Designing and Managing Natura 2000 Areas (Exemplified by the Conservation of the Butterfly <italic>Maculinea Nausithous</italic> in a Rural Landscape North of Dresden (Saxony))

The precautionary principle is more and more incorporated into national law and decision-making on natural resource management and biodiversity conservation. In the coherent European network of protected areas Natura 2000, the precautionary principle finds expression in the obligation to provide favourable conditions for the long-term survival of species and habitats, especially of the priority ones listed in the annexes of the Habitats Directive and the Birds Directive. After describing principles, structure, implementation and procedures of this rather new instrument for nature conservation using the example of one of the various Natura 2000 areas in Saxony (Germany), opportunities and problems for biodiversity conservation are outlined with particular regard for the situation in an agricultural landscape. Special attention is given to the following questions: requirements of and actual threats to the target species (the butterfly Maculinea nausithous), legal means and economic incentives for suitable measures, the management plan, and the role of stakeholders. It turns out that Natura 2000 could be an effective tool to advance nature conservation, and with special regard to the precautionary principle. Every effort is necessary to gain more public acceptance of Natura 2000, as well as to improve scientific knowledge concerning species and habitats under protection.

Keywords

  • acceptance
  • butterfly
  • grassland
  • management plan
  • stakeholders
Open Access

The Relationship Between Geodiversity and Habitat Richness in Šumava National Park and Křivoklátsko PLA (Czech Republic): A Quantitative Analysis Approach

Published Online: 08 Aug 2012
Page range: 23 - 38

Abstract

The Relationship Between Geodiversity and Habitat Richness in Šumava National Park and Křivoklátsko PLA (Czech Republic): A Quantitative Analysis Approach

This paper focuses on the development of a quantitative method for evaluating the relationship between abiotic heterogeneity and habitat richness at the landscape level. The study took place in the Křivoklátsko protected landscape area and Šumava national park (Czech Republic). Our initial hypothesis was that habitat richness should be high in areas with high abiotic heterogeneity, and vice versa. GIS vector layers of habitat were used for the formulation of habitat richness. A geological layer, a digital terrain model and hydrographic layers were used to determine abiotic heterogeneity. The study areas were overlain by a grid square and habitat richness and abiotic heterogeneity were assessed in each study cell. The data obtained were used in a statistical model (multiple spatial linear regression, with maximum credibility). The results of the statistical model indicated a significant influence of abiotic heterogeneity on habitat richness.

Keywords

  • geodiversity
  • abiotic heterogeneity
  • habitat richness
  • Šumava NP
  • Křivoklátsko PLA
  • GIS
  • multiple spatial linear regression
  • landscape level
  • NATURA 2000
Open Access

Changes in Fragmentation and the Ecological Stability of Floodplain Forest Geobiocenosis in the River Morava Floodplain Over the Course of the 20th Century

Published Online: 08 Aug 2012
Page range: 39 - 48

Abstract

Changes in Fragmentation and the Ecological Stability of Floodplain Forest Geobiocenosis in the River Morava Floodplain Over the Course of the 20<sup>th</sup> Century

The process of ecosystem fragmentation influences diversity and ecological stability in a significant way. This paper presents the results of analysis of changes in fragmentation and the ecological stability of the floodplain forest geobiocenosis in the Vrapač National Nature Reserve, a model area used for research into optimal forest reserve management methods in the Czech Republic (Simon, 2007). Using GIS methods, it was determined that fragmentation within this floodplain forest area decreased slightly between 1938 and 2006, and that the ecological stability of the landscape remains high. The results speak in favour of those theories advocating anthropogenic conditioning of floodplain forest ecosystems and show that even strongly anthropogenically modified geobiocenoses may show a high level of ecological stability, which is especially characteristic of the geobiocenoses of floodplain forests (Maděra, 2003).

Keywords

  • Fragmentation
  • diversity
  • ecological stability
  • geobiocenosis
  • floodplain forest
  • national nature reserve management
Open Access

Monitoring of Biodiversity Changes in the Landscape Scale

Published Online: 08 Aug 2012
Page range: 49 - 68

Abstract

Monitoring of Biodiversity Changes in the Landscape Scale

The monitoring and evaluation of changes in biodiversity is a subject for many biological and ecological disciplines. Biodiversity loss has become a social and political issue over the last few decades, and protection of biological diversity has emerged as one of the main subjects within national nature conservation policies as well as international conventions, conservation targets and political programmes (e.g. the Convention on Biological Diversity, Target 2010, SEBI 2010, CITES, Ramsar Convention, European Landscape Convention). The establishment of a monitoring scheme based on an appropriate set of indicators is vital for precise assessment of the effectiveness of measures applied within biodiversity protection (e.g. action plans for endangered species, agro-environmental and landscape protection programmes). Many indicators of biodiversity change have been proposed, but their representativeness and applicability frequently suffer from poor available data or local circumstances. The concept of species and landscape diversity evaluation using a fixed set of indicators has been developing in other European countries for some two decades, but this approach is still sporadic in the Czech Republic.

This paper provides a review of the current state of this topic in the Czech Republic, discusses the concept of establishing a future national biodiversity monitoring network, and proposes a self-contained set of indicators covering all organizational and spatial levels. These proposals will enable scientifically based and sufficiently accurate evaluation of existing trends in biodiversity and its projection into the future based on foreseeable land-use changes.

Keywords

  • indices
  • biodiversity monitoring
  • landscape changes
  • biodiversity indicators
5 Articles
Open Access

Ecological Networks are an Issue for All of US

Published Online: 08 Aug 2012
Page range: 7 - 13

Abstract

Ecological Networks are an Issue for All of US

The concept of ecological networks is not new. Ecological networks have been developed in several European countries, including in Estonia during the 1970s and 1980s and in former Czechoslovakia during the 1980s. In these countries, a strong tradition in land-use planning had created the institutional environment for allocating functions at the landscape scale and habitats were becoming increasingly fragmented due to economic development. We now recognise this as the translation of landscape ecological knowledge in homogenisation and fragmentation processes in the landscapes of Europe that diminished ecosystem functions and natural populations. Fragmentation explains much of the decline in natural species, and we now realize that, for many natural species, existing nature reserves and national parks are too small (Somma, 2006). The concept of ecological connectivity is implicit in several international conventions (e.g. Ramsar convention, Bern Convention), European agreements (Habitats and Species directives), and related EU policy implementation (Natura 2000). It has also become operational in national and European strategies (National Ecological Networks, the Pan-European Ecological Network and Pan European Biological and Landscape Diversity Strategy (PEBLDS).

The meaning and the application of the ecological network concept has changed over the past decade, with emphasis shifting from nature protection towards sustainable development for a region as a whole that integrates biodiversity issues. The observed change in thinking originates from the discourse in the international policy arena of the Convention on Biodiversity, the World Summit on Sustainable Development, and the Millennium Development Goals, which perceived the environment as making a contribution to sustainable development, rather than as something with intrinsic value to be protected from use. Implementation of these international agendas is increasingly guided by the ecosystem approach. This approach can be regarded as a strategy for the management of land, water and living resources that promotes conservation and sustainable use in an equitable way. One consequence of perceiving an ecological network as a means towards sustainable development is the increasing number and diversity of stakeholders and land-use interests that need to be incorporated into the design and that should be part of the management process. In addition, it is evident that the institutionalisation of such a landscape change will greatly benefit from the overall support of the stakeholders, or as Bennett (2004) puts it: "No programme of the breadth and ambition of an ecological network can achieve results without the active support of local communities and key stakeholders.

Open Access

Adopting the Precautionary Principle in Designing and Managing Natura 2000 Areas (Exemplified by the Conservation of the Butterfly Maculinea Nausithous in a Rural Landscape North of Dresden (Saxony))

Published Online: 08 Aug 2012
Page range: 14 - 22

Abstract

Adopting the Precautionary Principle in Designing and Managing Natura 2000 Areas (Exemplified by the Conservation of the Butterfly <italic>Maculinea Nausithous</italic> in a Rural Landscape North of Dresden (Saxony))

The precautionary principle is more and more incorporated into national law and decision-making on natural resource management and biodiversity conservation. In the coherent European network of protected areas Natura 2000, the precautionary principle finds expression in the obligation to provide favourable conditions for the long-term survival of species and habitats, especially of the priority ones listed in the annexes of the Habitats Directive and the Birds Directive. After describing principles, structure, implementation and procedures of this rather new instrument for nature conservation using the example of one of the various Natura 2000 areas in Saxony (Germany), opportunities and problems for biodiversity conservation are outlined with particular regard for the situation in an agricultural landscape. Special attention is given to the following questions: requirements of and actual threats to the target species (the butterfly Maculinea nausithous), legal means and economic incentives for suitable measures, the management plan, and the role of stakeholders. It turns out that Natura 2000 could be an effective tool to advance nature conservation, and with special regard to the precautionary principle. Every effort is necessary to gain more public acceptance of Natura 2000, as well as to improve scientific knowledge concerning species and habitats under protection.

Keywords

  • acceptance
  • butterfly
  • grassland
  • management plan
  • stakeholders
Open Access

The Relationship Between Geodiversity and Habitat Richness in Šumava National Park and Křivoklátsko PLA (Czech Republic): A Quantitative Analysis Approach

Published Online: 08 Aug 2012
Page range: 23 - 38

Abstract

The Relationship Between Geodiversity and Habitat Richness in Šumava National Park and Křivoklátsko PLA (Czech Republic): A Quantitative Analysis Approach

This paper focuses on the development of a quantitative method for evaluating the relationship between abiotic heterogeneity and habitat richness at the landscape level. The study took place in the Křivoklátsko protected landscape area and Šumava national park (Czech Republic). Our initial hypothesis was that habitat richness should be high in areas with high abiotic heterogeneity, and vice versa. GIS vector layers of habitat were used for the formulation of habitat richness. A geological layer, a digital terrain model and hydrographic layers were used to determine abiotic heterogeneity. The study areas were overlain by a grid square and habitat richness and abiotic heterogeneity were assessed in each study cell. The data obtained were used in a statistical model (multiple spatial linear regression, with maximum credibility). The results of the statistical model indicated a significant influence of abiotic heterogeneity on habitat richness.

Keywords

  • geodiversity
  • abiotic heterogeneity
  • habitat richness
  • Šumava NP
  • Křivoklátsko PLA
  • GIS
  • multiple spatial linear regression
  • landscape level
  • NATURA 2000
Open Access

Changes in Fragmentation and the Ecological Stability of Floodplain Forest Geobiocenosis in the River Morava Floodplain Over the Course of the 20th Century

Published Online: 08 Aug 2012
Page range: 39 - 48

Abstract

Changes in Fragmentation and the Ecological Stability of Floodplain Forest Geobiocenosis in the River Morava Floodplain Over the Course of the 20<sup>th</sup> Century

The process of ecosystem fragmentation influences diversity and ecological stability in a significant way. This paper presents the results of analysis of changes in fragmentation and the ecological stability of the floodplain forest geobiocenosis in the Vrapač National Nature Reserve, a model area used for research into optimal forest reserve management methods in the Czech Republic (Simon, 2007). Using GIS methods, it was determined that fragmentation within this floodplain forest area decreased slightly between 1938 and 2006, and that the ecological stability of the landscape remains high. The results speak in favour of those theories advocating anthropogenic conditioning of floodplain forest ecosystems and show that even strongly anthropogenically modified geobiocenoses may show a high level of ecological stability, which is especially characteristic of the geobiocenoses of floodplain forests (Maděra, 2003).

Keywords

  • Fragmentation
  • diversity
  • ecological stability
  • geobiocenosis
  • floodplain forest
  • national nature reserve management
Open Access

Monitoring of Biodiversity Changes in the Landscape Scale

Published Online: 08 Aug 2012
Page range: 49 - 68

Abstract

Monitoring of Biodiversity Changes in the Landscape Scale

The monitoring and evaluation of changes in biodiversity is a subject for many biological and ecological disciplines. Biodiversity loss has become a social and political issue over the last few decades, and protection of biological diversity has emerged as one of the main subjects within national nature conservation policies as well as international conventions, conservation targets and political programmes (e.g. the Convention on Biological Diversity, Target 2010, SEBI 2010, CITES, Ramsar Convention, European Landscape Convention). The establishment of a monitoring scheme based on an appropriate set of indicators is vital for precise assessment of the effectiveness of measures applied within biodiversity protection (e.g. action plans for endangered species, agro-environmental and landscape protection programmes). Many indicators of biodiversity change have been proposed, but their representativeness and applicability frequently suffer from poor available data or local circumstances. The concept of species and landscape diversity evaluation using a fixed set of indicators has been developing in other European countries for some two decades, but this approach is still sporadic in the Czech Republic.

This paper provides a review of the current state of this topic in the Czech Republic, discusses the concept of establishing a future national biodiversity monitoring network, and proposes a self-contained set of indicators covering all organizational and spatial levels. These proposals will enable scientifically based and sufficiently accurate evaluation of existing trends in biodiversity and its projection into the future based on foreseeable land-use changes.

Keywords

  • indices
  • biodiversity monitoring
  • landscape changes
  • biodiversity indicators

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