Title: Neutral Model Analysis of Landscape Patterns from Mathematical Morphology
Citation: LANDSCAPE ECOLOGY vol. 22 no. 7 p. 1033-1043
Publisher: SPRINGER
Publication Year: 2007
JRC N°: JRC34647
ISSN: 0921-2973
URI: http://www.springerlink.com/content/tg47r48505353487/?p=6da92f4eafbb4fd3934dbd704bac6b12&pi=5
DOI: 10.1007/s10980-007-9089-3
Type: Articles in periodicals and books
Abstract: Morphological analysis encompasses methods for characterizing land-cover patterns in ecological research and biodiversity assessments. This paper reports a neutral model analysis of morphological patterns in the absence of a structuring ecological process, to help set standards for comparing and interpreting morphological patterns on real land-cover maps. We consider six types of morphological patterns (core, perforated, edge, corridor, branch, and patch) on randomly generated binary maps in which the percent occupancy (P) varies from 1% to 99%. The maps are dominated by the morphological patch pattern for low P, by the branch and corridor patterns for intermediate P, and by the edge, perforated, and core patterns for high P. Pattern phase changes are signaled at critical P thresholds by increased variance of morphological patterns among maps and by abrupt transitions among the six types of morphological patterns. Phase changes from patch-dominated maps to maps dominated by branches and corridors are related to the existence of a percolating cluster, but the P threshold varies depending on the co-existence of the morphological core pattern. Phase changes from the morphological edge pattern to the perforated pattern occur when the non-core portion of the map no longer forms a percolating cluster and its context changes abruptly from exterior to interior. This appears to be the first demonstration of multiple phase changes corresponding to different aspects of landscape pattern on random neutral maps. A morphological pattern analysis of ten real forest maps illustrates applications of the results.
JRC Directorate:Sustainable Resources

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