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A holistic landscape ecological study of the interactions between farming activities and ecological patterns in Brittany, France

Landscape and Urban Planning

Abstract

We present a holistic analysis of the interactions of farming activities and ecological patterns within a gradient of landscape structure. This gradient is represented by three landscapes that grade from a dense hedgerow network landscape to an open landscape. These landscapes differ in both the type of farms (though most are dairy farms) and the type of hedgerow. Differences in hedgerow structure are correlated to adjacent land-use and to differences in farming systems. The grain of the landscapes, measured by the area of land at various distances from dense hedgerows is also different from one landscape to another. Ecological patterns are assessed by plant species distribution. Variations in the plant species composition of field margins is related to hedgerow structure, adjacent land-use and landscapes. The combination of hierarchical approaches of both farming systems and ecological systems through landscape elements and patterns proves to be a promising avenue to understand and manage the interactions between the two systems. (C) 2000 Elsevier Science B.V. All rights reserved.

Author(s): Baudry, J; Burel, F; Thenail, C; Le Coeur, D

Journal: Landscape and Urban Planning

Year: 2000

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