Distribution area

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Example: Distribution area of ​​the maples ( Acer )

A distribution area , often also called area , is the area (or several areas) of the earth's surface in which a certain plant or animal species lives and has been determined through observations . The term comes from biogeography and is also used for ecological or past communities. The distribution area is the proven "place of residence" of a species or a taxon . In contrast to this, the habitat is a region in which suitable living conditions prevail.

Area types

The complex customer ( chorology ) deals with the typing of areas and the causal analysis that led to the areas.

A distinction is made between closed and disjoint areas (areas that consist of one or more self-contained sub-areas). These can be the same size or smaller exclaves ( distribution islands ) than the main area. They can be relics or outposts . Areas change their size and shape in the course of the history of flora and vegetation, in more recent times also under the influence of human activity (development, straightening, etc.).

Systematic observations

Due to a few observations (chance observation), the distribution of a living being in an area cannot be proven. Individual observations can provide indications of spread, but spread can only be determined through systematic observations. Today, such observations are usually - in detail according to their exact position , time, observer and closer circumstances - collected in databases and evaluated into so-called distribution maps. If the database is connected to software with which the data can be further analyzed, linked to other data and output in various ways, we speak of a geographic information system . The systematic evaluation of random observations can also lead to the determination of a distribution area.


  • Geobotany section . In: A. Bresinsky, C. Körner, JW Kadereit, G. Neuhaus, U. Sonnewald: Strasburger - Textbook of Botany . 36th edition 2008, Spektrum Akademischer Verlag Heidelberg Berlin, ISBN 978-3-8274-1455-7 .

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. Elmar Birkenmeier: Some remarks on the biology of the wall gecko, Tarentola mauritanica mauritania Linné. (PDF) In: Österreichische Zoologische Zeitschrift 6, 1956, pp. 277–296.
  2. Hubert Laufer, Peter Sowig, Klemens Fritz: Distribution and stock situation of the crested newt (Triturus cristatus) in Baden-Württemberg. (PDF) In: RANA special edition 4, 2001, pp. 99–106.
  3. Helmut Steiner: Flashlights on the breeding biology and distribution of the griffins in Upper Austria. (PDF) In: Vogelkdl. Nachr. OÖ., Naturschutz aktuell 12, 1994, p. 12.
  4. Kurt von Batter: The brown-breasted hedgehog Erinaceus europaeus L. in Lower Austria. (PDF) In: Ann. Natural history. Mus. Vienna 80, pp. 273-280.
  5. Bruno Stadler, Reinhard Schnidrig, Pierre Mollet, Reto Spaar, Ueli Rehsteiner Kurt Bollmann: The Capercaillie Action Plan Switzerland - The national strategy for the protection and promotion of the Capercaillie Tetrao urogallus in Switzerland. ( Memento of the original from July 14, 2014 in the Internet Archive ) Info: The @1@ 2Template: Webachiv / IABot / www.wsl.ch archive link was inserted automatically and has not yet been checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. (PDF) In: Ornithol. Ob 105, 2008, pp. 117-121.