By R. J. Hobbs, D. M. Richardson, G. W. Davis (auth.), Dr. George W. Davis, Dr. David M. Richardson (eds.)
Human actions are inflicting species extinctions at a cost and significance rivaling these of earlier geologic extinction occasions.
Exploring mediterranean-type ecosystems - the Mediterranean Basin, California, Chile, Australia, and South Africa - this quantity addresses the query even if organic variety performs an important function within the functioning of ordinary ecosystems, and to what quantity that range could be decreased with out inflicting procedure malfunction. Comparative experiences in ecosystems which are related in definite respects, yet range in others, supply massive scope for gaining new insights into the hyperlinks among biodiversity and atmosphere functioning.
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Additional resources for Mediterranean-Type Ecosystems: The Function of Biodiversity
In: Kruger FJ, Mitchell DT, Jarvis JUM (eds) Mediterranean-type ecosystems. The role of nutrients. Ecological studies 43. J. M. W. Davis Russel JS, Moore AW (1976) Classification of climate by pattern analysis with Australasian and Southern African data as examples. Agric Meteorol 16: 45-70 Saunders DA (1993) A community-based observer scheme to assess avian responses to habitat reduction and fragmentation in south-western Australia. BioI Conserv 64: 203-218 Saunders DA, Hobbs RJ (1992) Impact on biodiversity of changes in land-use and climate.
M. W. Davis improving. A prerequisite for full understanding of ecosystem function, however, is an ability to link all levels of scale in the hierarchy of the natural world, from the molecule to the landscape. MTEs, with their wide range of biotic diversity and distinctive ecosystem processes involving fluxes of water, nutrients and energy, are ideal sites for testing hypotheses relating biodiversity to ecosystem function at all scales (Richardson and Cowling 1993). Linking of north and south, and east and west, across the five regions offers an important global perspective to this important exercise.
Indigenous agriculture and animal husbandry was practised in the Mediterranean Basin from 10 000 years ago, and the vegetation is now predominantly human-modified (Naveh and Kutiel 1990). The other regions were occupied by indigenous hunter-gatherers and pastoralists until relatively recently. Chile was colonised by the Spanish in 1550, South Africa by the Dutch in 1652, California by the Spanish in 1769, and southwestern Australia by the British in 1829. European grains and livestock were introduced to all regions soon after colonisation; in Chile this was nearly 450 years ago, in South Mrica 330 years ago, and in California 215 years ago.
Mediterranean-Type Ecosystems: The Function of Biodiversity by R. J. Hobbs, D. M. Richardson, G. W. Davis (auth.), Dr. George W. Davis, Dr. David M. Richardson (eds.)