W. von Bloh, A. Block, M. Parade, H. J. Schellnhuber
Physica A 266, 186-196 (1999)
Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK),
Telegrafenberg, P.O. Box 60 12 03, D-14412 Potsdam, Germany.
A considerably extended two-dimensional version of the famous Lovelock-Watson
model for geosphere-biosphere interactions (``Daisyworld'') is employed
to investigate the impact of habitat fragmentation. The latter is dynamically
modelled through the standard percolation process first introduced by solid
state theory. It is found that the connectivity of the space accessible for
life is crucial for ecological performance. In particular, the
self stabilizing capacity of the biosphere strongly depends on the fragmentation
topology. An extremely rich and partially counter-intuitive eco-dynamics is
observed when a simple community structure, consisting of plants and herbivores,
is introduced. Quite remarkably, high herbivore vitality destroys the stability
the entire biosphere in a way reminiscent of "desertification".
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