Special Issue "Food Webs, Ecosystem Functioning and Environmental Quality"
A special issue of Diversity (ISSN 1424-2818).
Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 July 2018).
Interests: the structure and stability of food webs; the relationship between biological diversity, ecosystem functioning and environmental quality, in particular in soils; Key concept in his approach is that the relationship between food web structure and ecosystem function is mutual in fundamental ways, i.e. soil food webs govern ecosystems processes, while soil processes shape the structure and stability of the soil food webs
Food webs bring structure to the ecosystems of our planet by disentangling the complex networks of feeding relations between species (‘who eats whom’). Understanding how phenomena we observe in nature arise out of this complexity, how robust the species relations are and how energy flows in ecosystems, is among the most fundamental problems in understanding the world ecosystems.
Food webs occupy a central position in ecology and environmental sciences. This is because food web interactions determine the ‘ecological success’ of populations in fundamental ways. Enough to eat (adequate resources), and not be eaten too much (and not over predated), both may determine the difference between survival and extinction. In this way, food web ecology helps to understand the current changes biodiversity at local and global scales. Second, trophic interactions represent material flow rates among the populations constituting food webs. In this way, food web interactions are the driver of ecosystems processes like carbon sequestration and nutrient cycling.
Therefore, understanding the role of food web interactions in ecological networks is, not only crucial for understanding population dynamics and persistence, it is also key to our understanding ecosystem processes like energy and nutrient cycling, the spread of pests and diseases, and, in this way, human welfare.
Prof. Dr. PC (Peter) de Ruiter
Manuscript Submission Information
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- Food Webs
- Ecosystem Functioning
- Environmental Quality