Throughout the last decades, ecosystem approaches seem to have grown out of puberty: For a rising number of ecologists the high complexity of ecological systems has not only become an accepted fact, but also an interesting object of investigation. In parallel, the successful reductionistic methodology has been accomplished steadily by holistic concepts that stress systems 392approaches and syntheses, and elucidate the linkages between the multiple compartments of ecological and human-environmental systems within structural, functional, and organizational entities. For instance, in Germany five Ecosystem Research Centers have been installed and supported within the last decades (see, e.g., Fränzle 1998; Fritz 1999; Gollan and Heindl 1998; Hantschel et al. 1998; Widey 1998; Wiggering 2001), and additional research projects have been carried out in national parks (e.g., Kerner et al. 1991), biosphere reservations (e.g., Schönthaler et al. 2001), and coastal districts (e.g., Dittmann et al. 1998; Kellermann et al. 1998). With these initiatives the comprehension and the acceptance of ecosystem approaches have made a big step forward (for an overview, see Schönthaler et al. 2003). The listed approaches have been accomplished by several Long-Term Ecological Research Program (LTER) initiatives and several projects that are based on the UN Commission on Biodiversity (CBD) ecosystem approach (see https://www.ecology.uni-kiel.de/salzau2006/).