chapter  9
Landscape Ecotoxicology
ByKaren Holl and John Cairns, Jr.
Pages 14

In recent years ecologists have increasingly tended toward studying natural processes not only at the individual, community, or ecosystem level, but over the entire landscape.

One of the primary reasons for this trend is the increasing recognition that most ecological studies are too small, both spatially and temporally, to detect many important natural processes. Landscape ecology focuses on (a) landscape structure, or the spatial arrangement of ecosystems within landscapes, (b) landscape function, or the interaction among these ecosystems through flow of energy, materials, and organisms, and (c) alterations of this structure and function.