The Mediterranean Basin is the largest of the five Mediterranean-climate regions, and one of the largest archipelagos in the world. The basin is located at the intersection of two major landmasses, Eurasia and Africa; and has around five thousand islands, which contribute much to its high diversity and spectacular scenery. It possesses higher salinity than the Atlantic. The shores are chiefly mountainous. Earthquakes and volcanic disturbances are frequent.
Some of the most ancient civilizations flourished around the region. Carthagians, Greeks, Sicilians, and Romans were rivals for dominance of its shores and trade. The basin virtually became a Roman lake under the Roman Empire. Later, the region was dominated by the Byzantines and the Arabs. The development of the northern regions of Africa and of oil fields in the Middle East has increased its trade.
The flora is dramatic with over 20 thousand endemic vascular plant taxa, and many endemic species of animals. Fish (about 400 species), sponges, and corals are plentiful. The touristic activities are threatening populations of many species. The fragmentation and isolation is increasing due to resort development and infrastructure. The overuse of the sea's natural and marine resources continues to be a problem.The Mediterranean monk-seal, the barbary macaque and the Iberian lynx, which is critically endangered, are among the region's imperiled species.
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Prof. Dr. Recep Efe was born in Turkey. He has authored/edited 13 scientific books, over 100 papers in refereed scientific journals and conference proceedings. His research interest has been ecosystem analysis, ecology and land cover usage.
Prof. Dr. Munir Ozturk was born in Kashmir (India) has published 45 book chapters, 145 papers in refereed journals, presented 146 papers in meetings-conferences, served as guest editor in 5 international journals, and edited / published 32 books in the fields of ecology and environmental sciences; received more than 15 honours or awards.
Prof. Dr. h. c. Ibrahim Atalay was born in Turkey. He received his bachelor and master degrees in Geography from the University of Istanbul. He obtained his Ph.D. in Geography from Istanbul University; He has authored more than 30 scientific books and over 120 paper in scientific journals and conference proceedings. He was awarded "Professoris Honoris Causa" title by the University of Bucharest. He was selected in 500 Greatest Geniuses of the 21st Century due to dedicated and influential success in the field of Geography and Ecology by the American Biographical Institute.