Excellence in Ecology: Book 14

The Shrinking World: Ecological Consequences Of Habitat Loss


Ilkka Hanski


Metapopulation Research Group, Department of Biological and Environmental Sciences, PO Box 65 (Viikinkaari 1), 00014 University of Helsinki, Finland

Recipient of the International Ecology Institute (ECI) Prize 1999 in terrestrial ecology



Professor Ilkka Hanski was elected by a Jury of the International Ecology Institute in Oldendorf/Luhe, Germany, chaired by Professor Fakhri Bazzaz, Cambridge, USA. Ilkka Hanski is an acknowledged leader in contemporary ecology. His research includes population, community and conservation biology, with a particular focus on metapopulation biology. Ilkka Hanski's studies on the metapopulations of the Glanville fritillary butterfly demonstrate how theoretical models can be closely linked with empirical studies. This research has resulted in a widely recognized model system in population ecology, and the studies have elucidated key concepts such as the extinction threshold, multiple equilibria in spatial dynamics, transient dynamics following environmental changes, and the role of inbreeding in population dynamics. Hanski's research has significant implications for the maintenance of biodioversity-and ultimately the ecological functions-in forest ecosystems.


EE Book 14 describes and analyzes the knowledge and consequences of the loss and fragmentation of natural habitats caused by human activities. Ilkka Hanski emphasizes that a sufficient amount and diversity of habitats is a fundamental prerequisite for the continued existence and evolution of life as we know it, and for its capacity to support humanity. This book is essential reading for everybody interested in the biological processes influencing terrestrial biodiversity.



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