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A subunit, race, or variety of a plant ecospecies that is restricted to one habitat; equivalent to a taxonomic subspecies.



a group of similar populations within one and the same plant species that are adapted to certain climatic, edaphic, or cenotic conditions and that have developed, under these conditions, hereditary morphological, physiological, biochemical, and other features. Thus, an ecotype is isolated with respect to distribution; genotypically it is an intraspecific subdivision, which distinguishes it from a biotype.

The term “ecotype” was introduced in the 1920’s by the Swedish scientist G. Turesson. Different plants have different numbers of ecotypes. The ecotypic composition of a species becomes more varied as its geographic range and ecological amplitude increase. For example, 36 ecotypes have been distinguished in the pine Pinus silvestris and 27 in the spruce Picea abies. Ecotypic polymorphism is most clearly manifested at the center of speciation and morphogenesis. In the medic Medicago falcata, for example, there are many ecotypes in the Caucasus and only a few in the northern USSR. Parallel ecotypic differentiation is observed in many species. Thus, the wormwood Artemisia campestris, sheep sorrel (Rumex acetosella), and Silene uniflora, which grow in bright, dry habitats where there are strong winds, develop eco-types with procumbent stems.

Three main groups of ecotypes are distinguished: climatic, edaphic, and biotypic. Climatic, or geographic, ecotypes occupy a separate part of the area of distribution of a species and originated under the influence of specific climatic conditions; for example, in the awnless brome (Bromus inermis), the southern eco-type differs from the northern one by its nanism, narrow rough leaves, and wax coating. Edaphic ecotypes develop under the influence of soil and ground conditions, such as the pine ecotype on the chalky outcrops of the Don River, which has even been described as the independent species Pinus cretácea. Biotypic, or cenotic, ecotypes appear and develop mainly under the influence of plants together with which the given species form plant communities, for example, the field and forest ecotypes of the cocksfoot (Dactylis glomerata) and the forest and dune ecotypes of the narrow-leaved hawkweed (Hieracium umbellatum).

The development of an ecotype is a lengthy process. If an ecotype has progressive characteristics, which permit it to extend the range of the species, it may give rise to a new species, and consequently an ecotype is one of the stages in the process of specia-tion.


Sinskaia, E. N. Dinamika vida. Moscow-Leningrad, 1948.
Zavadskii, K. M. Uchenie o vide. Leningrad, 1961.
Korchagin, A. A. “Vnutrividovoi (populiatsionnyi) sostav rastitel’nykh soobshchestv i metody ego izucheniia.” In the book Polevaia geobotanika, vol. 3. Moscow-Leningrad, 1964.


References in periodicals archive ?
Lowland ecotypes included two released varieties (Alamo and Kanlow) and four experimental varieties.
While our methods only considered coarse habitat use in our Risk Index, moose behavior within individual ecotypes is presumably also important.
Seasonal changes in glycerol content and cold hardiness in two ecotypes of the rice stem borer, Chilo suppressalis, exposed to the environment in the Shonai district, Japanese J.
In conclusion, by analyzing lice harvested from the heads and clothing of homeless persons, we have shown that the 2 ecotypes belong to the same body lice population.
Paper chromatography has been used as an aid in differentiating ecotypes of P.
Because of this elevational range, myriad ecotypes can be found on the Vermejo, including short-grass prairie, pinyon-juniper woodlands, ponderosa pine forests, mixed conifer stands, spruce-fir forests, and alpine habitats.
to discover associations between ecotypes, temperature, rainfall, humidity conditions, and mosquito distributions.
The plant remains, studied by Amanda Kennedy contain a range of species, including wild cabbage and probably barley, while the wood charcoal, studied by Phil Austin, has shown that several different ecotypes were being exploited by the WF16 inhabitants, including riparian woodland with willow, alder and figs, and pine-clad uplands.
Ecotypes of rice include indica, japonica and javanica (Smith, 1995).
Four different genotypes of alfalfa ecotypes including Ghareghozlo, Hoakmabad, Malekkandi and Ghahavand were used in the study.
Distribution of vectors, transmission indices and microfilaria rates of sub-periodic Wuchereria bancrofti in relation to village ecotypes in Samoa.