What is Finnmark?

The region of Finnmark at 69-71oN forms the northernmost tip of the European continent (see map).The major part of Finnmark is composed of treeless tundra areas, either consisting of sub-arctic mountain tundra or low arctic coastal tundra. The tundra areas are interspersed with sub-arctic forests, mainly mountain birch forest.

What characterizes sub-arctic and low arctic ecosystems?

Arctic and sub-arctic terrestrial ecosystems are fascinating. Compared to ecosystem at lower altitudes they are relative simple in their structure; for instance, the number of  species are few. Yet they are highly dynamic with vast changes over the seasons within a year and with strong multi-annual fluctuations in productivity and species interactions. For people living in these northern areas the natural resources contained in arctic and sub-arctic ecosystems are important sources for subsistence and recreation. In a broader perspective, there are many unique species and ecological phenomena in the arctic and sub-arctic regions that require special attention in terms and management and conservation.

What is “Ecosystem Finnmark” and it main objectives?

“Ecosystem Finnmark” is an umbrella for research projects at the Department of Biology, University of Tromsø and Department of Arctic Ecology, Norwegian Institute for Nature Research, Tromsø. A common denominator of the research is that it applies an ecosystem perspective to ecological research in Finnmark. An ecosystem perspective implies that focal species or processes are investigated in the broader context of the food webs they belong. Ecosystem oriented research provides a more comprehensive understanding of how nature works and how its can managed properly than research focusing single species and processes.

What are typical research projects in “Ecosystem Finnmark”?

The research within “Ecosystem Finnmark” is often motivated by applied problems such the ecological effects of environmental change, optimal use and harvesting of natural resources and conservation of vulnerable species. However, because of our ecosystem approach the research project involves much basic research, for instance, to devise new research methods and to general improve on the basic knowledge about how food webs work.





Ecosystem Finnmark


Research workers



Contact us:

Dept. of Biology
Fac. of Science
Uni. of Tromsø
N-9037 Tromsø



Rolf A. Ims

Per Fauchald

Vera Hausner



Ecosystem Finnmark