One of the most important scientific contributions to the application of the Landascape Ecology’s disciplines is represented by the development of indicators to assess environmental quality. In particular, the use of bio-indicators based on flora, vegetation and fauna allowed a better classification of threatened species and habitats, together with a development of specific environmental policies. Despite this, many of the analysis and methods used in several conservation actions showed some important application limits, especially inside modified ecosystems such as farmlands and urban areas. The importance of agro-ecosystems for the conservation of the whole territory has been universally recognized by the most part of scientific and productive sectors. Nonetheless, there is still a lack of knowledge, methods and experimental trials able to provide a sensitive assessment of actual environmental conditions, and of all corrective actions to be taken. This work presents a method to assess environmental quality inside agro-ecosystems; it is based on a system of bio-indicators used as an analysis tool able to take advantage of all potential information brought by different bio-coenosis. Starting from the innovations of the phytosociological dynamic approach, the main objective is to take into account the results provided by vegetational analysis, concerning the description of land units and phyto-coenotic mosaics, and to improve their information capacity through an integration with quantitative data. These data can be obtained by the application of specific vegetation and faunistic bio-indicators created to be used inside agro-ecosystems. Essential faunistic bio-indicators were chosen for their sensitiveness and suitability inside different application contexts; they can also allow to focus on specific environmental factors undetectable with the vegetation analysis, such as the responses of different keystone species to environmental fragmentation and to insecticides. This kind of interpretation of landscape dynamics, especially inside agro-ecosystems, is coherent with the application of European Agro-environmental Policies (CAP, RDP, Habitat Dir.), and with the main objective of biodiversity conservation (Countdown 2010). The importance of a knowledge base for the assessment of policies effectiveness is also necessary to evaluate sustainable systems for environmental management inside both natural (protected areas) and agricultural systems.
Vegetation and fauna: essential bio-indicators for the asessment of agro-ecosystems / Taffetani, Fabio; Rismondo, M.. - (2009), pp. 116-116. (Intervento presentato al convegno 45° Internationali Congress of SIVS & FIPS Biodiversity Hotspot in the Mediterranenean area tenutosi a Cagliari nel 22-24 june 2009).