Quartz Islands - Island biogeography and ecology of distinct terrestrial habitat islands
Quartz islands are edaphically driven habitat islands which offer unique opportunities to answer fundamental ecological questions with regard to community ecology and island biogeography. The iconic quartz islands of the Knersvlakte significantly contribute to the diversity and endemism of higher plants of the Succulent Karoo biome in southern Africa, a globally renowned biodiversity hotspot. In this study, we will combine cutting edge methods of remote sensing and island biogeographic theory with vegetation ecology to identify and quantify the drivers of diversity and endemism from the local through the island to the landscape scale. This will lead to an improved understanding of island biogeographic theory acting across scales, novel insights into processes generating biodiversity with conservation implications, and to advance remote sensing applications in low biomass systems worldwide.
Mathematics, Informatics and Natural Sciences
Institute for Plant Science and Microbiology, Biodiversity, Ecology and Evolution of Plants