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Abstract

In this paper, I discuss certain fundamental concepts about which there is yet no general agreement among ecologists. The text consists of three parts: (1) the ecosystem, (2) the community, and (3) diversity and stability. In (1), I compare the ecosystem and continuum concepts and review a spectrum of examples from those best corresponding to the ecosystem scheme to those best corresponding to the continuum concept. In (2), I compare the community as a system of interrelated species living in the same physical environment. In addition, I discuss the nature and the value of the relationships among different species and different trophic levels. In (3), I focus on the concept and the evaluation of diversity and on the concept of stability and the relationships between diversity and stability. These concepts require more information and more collaboration between plant, animal, and microbial ecologists are necessary. The future of applied ecology will depend upon the progress made in studies of these fundamental concepts of ecology.

Additional information

Authors: RAVERA O JRC ISPRA ESTAB. (ITALY), JRC ISPRA ESTAB. (ITALY)
Bibliographic Reference: TRENDS IN ECOLOGICAL RESEARCH FOR THE 1980'S, 1984, PP. 145-162, PUBLISHED BY PLENUM PUBLISHING CORPORATION, NEW YORK (USA)
Record Number: 1989124005900 / Last updated on: 1987-01-01
Category: PUBLICATION
Available languages: en