Applied Landscape Ecology
Whether new to the practice or an established ecologist, anyone with an interest in this exciting and developing field should have a copy of Applied Landscape Ecology at their disposal. Francisco Castro Rego, Professor of Landscape Ecology, Centre for Applied Ecology 'Prof. Baeta Neves', InBio and School of Agriculture, University of Lisbon, Lisbon, Portugal Stephen C. Bunting, Emeritus Professor of Landscape and Rangeland Ecology, College of Natural Resources, University of Idaho, Moscow, ID, USA Eva Kristina Strand, Professor of Landscape Ecology, College of Natural Resources, University of Idaho, Moscow, ID, USA Paulo Godinho-Ferreira, Senior Researcher of Landscape Ecology, Centre for Applied Ecology 'Prof. Baeta Neves', InBio and Institute for Agrarian and Veterinarian Research, Lisbon, Portugal
Applied Landscape Ecology
Concepts and Approaches in Landscape Ecology
1.1 The Historical Development of Landscape Ecology as a Science
Ecology as a written science probably has its known beginnings in ancient Greece with Aristotle and particularly with his successor, Theophrastus, who was one of the first philosophers to study "the relationships between the organisms and their environment". This definition of the term Ecology that was first used two millennia later by the German zoologist Ernst Haeckel, who, in 1866, associated the Greek words Oikos (house) and Logos (science) ( Figure 1.1 ).
Figure 1.1 The Greek philosopher Theophrastus (371-287 BC) (left) and the German ecologist Ernst Haeckel (1834-1919AC) (right).
Source: _Haeckel_2.jpg (3 December 2017).
Haeckel further expanded the definition of Ecology in his writings in 1869 1 : "By ecology we mean the body of knowledge concerning the economy of nature, the investigation of the total relations of the animal both to its inorganic and to its organic environment; including above all, its friendly and inimical relations with those animals and plants with which it comes directly or indirectly into contact."
Other subdisciplines of ecology focus on the study of the distribution and abundance of individuals of the same species (population ecology) 2 , on the interaction between populations (community ecology) 3 , or, especially after the very influential book published in 1953 by Eugene Odum 4 , on the study of ecosystems (systems ecology). Ecology has expanded from populations to communities and ecosystems, and more recently to landscape scales.
The English word "landscape" first appeared in the late sixteenth century when the term landschap was introduced by Dutch painters who used it to refer to paintings whose primary subject matter was natural scenery, associating the word "land" (of Germanic origin) and the suffix "schaft" or "scape", meaning shape 5 ( Figure 1.2 ).
Figure 1.2 Landscape painting of Richmond castle (1639) by the Dutch landscape painter Alexander Keirincx (1600-1652).
Source: Yale Center for British Art, Paul Mellon Collection: Netherlandish Painters Active in Britain in the Sixteenth and Seventeenth Centuries, (17 February 2017).
In the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, "landscape" continued to be associated with paintings, but a new meaning of the term developed when Alexander von Humboldt (1769-1857) started the new science of plant geography. Humboldt explored the visual qualities of painted landscapes transforming the concept of landscape from its primary visual meaning into an abstract entity by finding its ecological unity 6 ( Figure 1.3 ). The concept of landscape was moving from art to ecological science.
Figure 1.3 Painting of the German naturalist Alexander von Humboldt (1769-1859) (left) and photo of the German geographer Carl Troll (1899-1975) (right). (17 February 2017).
Source: Portrait of Alexander von Humboldt by Friedrich Georg Weitsch, 1806,
Following the work of Humboldt, it was another German geographer, Carl Troll, who first coined in 1939 7 the term "landscape ecology" hoping that a new science could be developed that integrated the spatial approach of geogr