A Conceptual Model on Relationship between Structure and Functions in Rangeland Ecosystems

Document Type: Review and Short Length Article


Gorgan University of Agricultural Science and Natural Resources


One of the most important issues in structure-function relationship modeling is that each rangeland has numerous functions and each of them can provide the most benefits in a certain state of that ecosystem. In fact, relationship between structure and function can be varied in different states. After presentation of the Linear Structure-Function Model based on the Clementsian succession theory, another conceptual model was proposed to modify it based on more realistic State and Transition theory. While previous models mostly suppose one single function in their simulations, in this article, we suggest a conceptual model that summarizes the relationships between Ecosystem Structure and Multiple Functions (ESMF) in various states. The model can be useful for rangeland managers to get a rather correct understanding about multiple functions in rangelands. By this right understanding, the rangeland managers will be able to identify the best states for their ecosystems and try to reach to these states which can provide totally maximum benefits. This model shows that some functions in rangelands may conflict with or overlapped each other and some functions may not show a meaningful relationship with structure in ecosystems so that it is a very important task for managers to choose the states with the highest benefits and less conflict.


Main Subjects

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