The most extensive and connected landscape type, playing the dominant role in landscape functioning. The characteristics of matrix structure are the density of the patches (porosity), boundary shape, networks, and heterogeneity. The type of landscape matrix surrounding a patch can mitigate the negative effect of habitat isolation for a given species, according to its degree of matrix habitat use (Barbaro et al. (2007) J. Biogeog. 34, 4). V. Ingegnoli (2002) describes three matrix types: continuous, with a single, dominant element type; discontinuous, with a few co-dominant element types; and web-shaped, with connected corridors of prevailing functions.
Subjects: Earth Sciences and Geography.