LandKlif - Effects of climate change on biodiversity and ecosystem services in semi-natural, agricultural and urban landscapes and strategies for management of climate change

Climatic conditions and land use have a significant impact on habitats, biodiversity and ecosystem services. The transformation of semi-natural habitats into agricultural or settlement areas changes the species inventory, the provision of ecosystem services and the adaptation potential of ecosystems to changing climatic conditions. At the local level, there is often a positive correlation between biodiversity and ecosystem functions. However, until now, studies on the following aspects are still missing: (1) how climatic gradients and the landscape composition and configuration influence the biodiversity and the provision of ecosystem services, (2) which interactions exist between climatic conditions and land use, (3) whether biodiversity at population, species community and landscape level improves the resilience against climate change and extreme climatic events. The LandKlif Network investigates the biodiversity and multi-functionality of semi-natural, agricultural and urban landscape areas in different climate zones of Bavaria, in order to answer these questions and to develop options for the mitigation of climate change as well as the adaptation to changing climatic conditions. The three landscape types differ fundamentally in level of anthropogenic impact, biodiversity, and ecosystem services which they provide to the society. A better understanding of the interactions between landscape structure, regional climate change and ecosystem responses is an important basis for developing strategies to climate change mitigation and regional adaptation to its consequences.

Figure 1: Landscape areas and ecosystem services in Bavaria. 

In the LandKlif network, a total of 60 representative near-natural, agricultural and urban landscape areas are selected, which cover the temperature, precipitation and elevation gradients in Bavaria from dry-warm regions in lower Franconia to the highlands of the Bavarian Forest and Berchtesgaden National Park. In each of five climatic zones, four landscape areas are selected, which represent a gradient in habitat diversity, so that a total of 20 study sites per landscape type are investigated. For each landscape area, existing datasets are used and new observational and experimental data will be collected. 

Figure 2: Conceptual approach of the LandKlif research network.

The ten subprojects (SPs) address complementary tasks for the study of land use, climate, biodiversity, and ecosystem services. The derivation of regional, landscape-based management strategies for climate protection, nature conservation and preservation of ecosystem services will improve the ecological, economic and social resilience of Bavaria to climate change. 

Figure 3: Within the LandKlif research network the biodiversity of plants, insects and vertebrates as well as their ecosystem  services are being investigated.


Vegetation of Bavaria’s normal landscape between global warming and hemeroby

 Prof. Dr. Jörg Ewald, Hochschule Weihenstephan-Triesdorf

Mapping of land use and ecosystem services using remote sensing

Prof. Dr. Stefan Dech,  University of Würzburg

Climate and water cycle analysis for Bavaria using extremely high-resolution regional earth system modeling

Prof. Dr. Harald Kunstmann, University of Augsburg and Karlsruhe Institute of Technology

Modeling and assessment of ecosystem services upon climate change

Prof. Dr. Thomas Koellner, University of Bayreuth