For some time vegetation scientists have used simulation models to describe ecological relations and processes. These models are mostly used to gain insight into the functioning of plant species, such as growth performance and competitive ability under different conditions. However, most plant species have a mobile stage during their life cycle, when seeds or vegetative components are dispersed. Including this spatial behaviour of plant species in simulation models requires the characterization of the spatial relationships between population dynamics of plant species and the spatial distribution of the species. Until recently, the dynamic models used to describe vegetation dynamics were so-called one-dimensional models. In this paper the advantages of the application of a GIS model for spatially explicit modelling of vegetation dynamics have been described. Application of spatial models requires a spatialdistributed description of plant species (or species groups) in the vegetation. Additionally, several remote sensing techniques in combination with field data were used to demonstrate how spatially distributed information of vegetation can be applied to simulate dynamics of patterns and processes in vegetation.

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Acta botanica neerlandica

CC BY 3.0 NL ("Naamsvermelding")

Koninklijke Nederlandse Botanische Vereniging

Gerrit W. Heil, & Willem P.A. van Deursen. (1996). Searching for patterns and processes: modelling of vegetation dynamics with Geographical Information Systems and Remote Sensing. Acta botanica neerlandica, 45(4), 543–556.