Ecohydrology of terrestrial ecosystems

Paolo D'Odorico, Francesco Laio, Amilcare Porporato, Luca Ridolfi, Andrea Rinaldo, Ignacio Rodriguez-Iturbe

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

102 Scopus citations


Water controls the dynamics of terrestrial ecosystems directly, as a resource for the biota, and indirectly, as a driver for abiotic processes on the Earth's surface, in the atmosphere, and belowground. The biota, in turn, modulate several hydrological processes and the rate of the water cycle. Here we review recent advances related to fundamental processes and feedbacks emerging from the interactions among hydrologic processes and ecosystems, with a particular focus on soil moisture dynamics and river flow. Most terrestrial vegetation interacts with hydrological processes through the soil-water balance, which is affected by soil properties, random climate drivers, and feedbacks with the biota. River flow enhances the ecohydrological connectivity of the landscape, spreading sediments, nutrients, propagules, and waterborne disease through waterways.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)898-907
Number of pages10
Issue number11
StatePublished - Dec 2010
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Agricultural and Biological Sciences


  • ecohydrology
  • green and blue water
  • river networks
  • vegetation-water resource feedbacks
  • water cycle


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