Mediterranean Type Ecosystems

Origin and Structure

  • Francesco di Castri
  • Harold A. Mooney

Part of the Ecological Studies book series (ECOLSTUD, volume 7)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages I-XII
  2. Convergence in Ecosystems

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 1-1
  3. Physical Geography of Lands with Mediterranean Climates

  4. Vegetation in Mediterranean Climate Regions

  5. Soil Systems in Mediterranean Climate Regions

  6. Plant Biogeography

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 211-212
    2. Peter H. Raven
      Pages 213-224
  7. Animal Biogeography and Ecological Niche

  8. Human Activities Affecting Mediterranean Ecosystems

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 361-361
  9. Back Matter
    Pages 391-408

About this book


No other disjunct pieces of land present such striking similarities as the widely sepa­ 1 rated regions with a mediterranean type of climate, that is, the territories fringing the Mediterranean Sea, California, Central Chile and the southernmost strips of South Mrica and Australia. Similarities are not confined to climatic trends, but are also reflected in the physiognomy ofthe vegetation, in land use patterns and frequently in the general appearance of the landscape. The very close similarities in agricultural practices and sometimes also in rural settlements are dependent on the climatic and edaphic analogies, as well as on a certain commonality in qdtural history. This is certainly true for the Mediterranean Sea basin which in many ways represents a sort of ecological-cultural unit; this is also valid for CaUfornia and Chile, which were both settled by Spaniards and which showed periods of vigorous commercial and cultural interchanges as during the California gold rush. One other general feature is the massive interchange of cultivated and weed species of plants that has occurred between the five areas of the world that have a mediterranean-type climate, with the Mediterranean basin region itself as a major source. In spite of their limited territorial extension, probably no other parts of the world have played a more fundamental role in the history of mankind. Phoenician, Etruscan, Hellenic, Jewish, Roman, Christian andArab civilizations, among others,haveshapedmanyofman's present attitudes, including his position and perception vis-a-vis nature.


Ecosystems Flora Physical Geography anatomy animals biogeography bird chemistry climate ecosystem evolution fauna plant soil vegetation

Editors and affiliations

  • Francesco di Castri
    • 1
    • 2
  • Harold A. Mooney
    • 3
  1. 1.Instituto de EcologíaUniversidad Austral de ChileValdiviaChile
  2. 2.Section of EcologyUNESCOParisFrance
  3. 3.Department of Biological SciencesStanford UniversityStanfordUSA

Bibliographic information

  • DOI
  • Copyright Information Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 1973
  • Publisher Name Springer, Berlin, Heidelberg
  • eBook Packages Springer Book Archive
  • Print ISBN 978-3-642-65522-7
  • Online ISBN 978-3-642-65520-3
  • Series Print ISSN 0070-8356
  • Buy this book on publisher's site