Self-regulating ecosystem dynamics in future wilderness development driven by large herbivore-wildfire-vegetation interactions

– and relations to the megaherbivore theory –

Schulze, Kiowa Alraune

kassel university press, ISBN: 978-3-7376-0676-9, 2019, 130 Pages

URN: urn:nbn:de:0002-406776

DOI: 10.19211/KUP9783737606776

Zugl.: Kassel, Univ., Diss. 2018

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Content: In the context of the rewilding Europe debate, the German national strategy on biodiversity aims to dedicate two percent of the German state area to wilderness development until 2020. Many of these potential large wilderness reserves harbor open habitats that require protection according to the Flora-Fauna-Habitat-directive of the European Union. As forests prevail in potential natural vegetation, research is required in future wilderness development in Central Europe, to which extent wild large herbivores and natural disturbances may create semi-open landscape patterns in the long-term. The spatially explicit process-based ecosystem model “WoodPaM” was used to simulate various potential future wilderness scenarios in order to analyze the long-term interactions between wild intermediate foraging large herbivores, natural wildfires and vegetation dynamics. It required the integrative analysis of future wilderness dynamics in the context of a balanced representation of all relevant processes to reveal the emergence of the ecosystem property “self-regulation” in wilderness landscapes as well as of novel landscape patterns in future wilderness areas.

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