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Web Ecology An open-access peer-reviewed journal
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Volume 2, issue 1
Web Ecol., 2, 65–70, 2001
https://doi.org/10.5194/we-2-65-2001
© Author(s) 2001. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.
Web Ecol., 2, 65–70, 2001
https://doi.org/10.5194/we-2-65-2001
© Author(s) 2001. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.

  24 Oct 2001

24 Oct 2001

Geometrical consideration for evaluation of reserve design

J. Bogaert, D. Salvador-Van Eysenrod, P. Van Hecke, and I. Impens J. Bogaert et al.
  • Univ. of Antwerp, UIA, Dept. of Biology, Research Group of Plant and Vegetation Ecology, Universiteitsplein 1, 2610 Wilrijk, Belgium

Abstract. The edge effect, generated by the interaction of patch and matrix, is preferably described by the interior-to-edge ratio of the patch. This ratio quantifies the extent of microclimatic changes at the boundary, and influences nature reserve design. As shown for elliptical and rectangular shapes, large and isodiametric patch designs are characterized by high interior-to-edge ratios. Different patch geometries can however lead to similar values of the ratio. A reference value, based upon the patch size, is therefore proposed to normalize the ratio to its maximum value, as observed for a perfectly isodiametric patch. The effect of patch geometry on the normalized ratio is discussed, as well as patch ranking based upon both the simple ratio and the normalized interior-to-edge ratio. An example is included using forest patches in the Belgian Campine region to illustrate the usefulness of the proposed index.

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