First Workshop on Information Technologies Application to Problems of Biodiversity and Dynamics of Ecosystems in North Eurasia (WITA-2001)

July 9-14, 2001, Novosibirsk, Russia


Databases and GIS Technologies

Interpreting species distribution and biodiversity patterns in Denmark with GIS and advanced statistics

Lawesson J.E.

Biological Institute,
Århus University (Risskov)

A large database of Danish vegetation types has been developed in the context of the Nordic Vegetation Survey (Lawesson et al. 1997) and according to the concepts laid out by a working group of the Nordic Council of Ministers (Lawesson et al. 2000).

It includes most of the historical vegetation data collected in Denmark, and for forests alone contains some 2000 community samples. A number of studies on Danish forest distribution, typology and ecology have emerged from this dataset (Lawesson et al. 1998; Lawesson 1999, 2000) and more are in progress.

Biodiversity and vegetation studies may very conveniently be combined with spatial analysis in a GIS-ArcView environment (Lawesson 1995) to study the distribution patterns of individual species, plant communities and species richness, and give better insights of the phytogeography and regional patterns in gradients and species richness in a region. Spatial modelling of vegetation properties is moreover a strong tool with respect to estimate the likely consequences of changed climatic conditions.

The Danish core results from these efforts are presented, along with descriptions of the applied database-structure (TURBOVEG), conventional (TWINSPAN, CANOCO) and advanced (S-PLUS) statistical analyses and how to link to geographical information systems (ArcView). The present main focus is on individual forest species and forest types, and how to generalize from local and regional studies to landscape and national levels. A few cases are presented to illustrate the aims and perspectives of ongoing research projects, at regional, national and international scales.

Note. Abstracts are published in author's edition

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