chapter  2
12 Pages

Palaearctic Grasslands in Transition: Overarching Patterns and Future Prospects

The chapters are arranged according to biogeographic and socioeconomic criteria because both can have a strong impact on the current state of grasslands, their diversity, management and threats. Since many statistics are only available on a per-country basis and socioeconomic drivers usually act on a country level, we normally included complete countries in a chapter even if parts of a country territory show stronger biogeographic relationships to the region of another chapter. The only exceptions are France and Italy, which have been divided between Western and Northern Europe (Dengler and Tischew, 2018) and the Mediterranean Basin and the Middle East (Ambarlı et al., 2018), as well as China, whose subtropical parts (belonging to the Indo-Malayan biogeographic realm) are not considered. Overall, we managed to cover the whole Palaearctic biogeographic realm, with the only exception of two smaller regions, namely the Caucasus countries (Armenia,

Fig. 2.1 Chapter division of the Palaearctic realm. There are no chapters dealing with the Caucasus countries (Armenia, Azerbaijan and Georgia) nor with North and South Korea. Note that, deviating from this simplified map, the chapter ‘Western and Northern Europe’ excludes Mediterranean France (treated in the chapter ‘Mediterranean Basin and the Middle East’) but includes the Italian Alps (instead of the chapter ‘Mediterranean Basin and the Middle East’), and from China only the Palaearctic northern part is considered.