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Abstract

Changes in the land use structure, which are observed in recent years, generally indicate their negative impact on ecological quality considered in the landscape scale. Therefore, the aim of this study was to determine whether such a trend also applies to protected areas, such as land-scape parks (LP). As research areas four parks located within the Roztocze and Solska Forest (Poland) were selected. Three factors were analyzed as an surrogate indicators of the ecological quality: the degree of anthropogenic transformation of land cover forms, landscape diversity and the degree of landscape fragmentation. The study included data for the years 2004 and 2012 and was based on the GIS and orthophotomaps analysis. The results showed a lack of general trends for the whole analyzed region. The impact of changes in the land use structure on the ecological values can be defined as positive for Krasnobród LP and South Roztocze LP. In the case of Szczebrzeszyn LP and Solska Forest LP the impact is difficult to determine due to the different results obtained on the basis of selected indicators. Therefore, in order to totally illustrate the analyzed dependence the landscape structure in other periods of time should be analyzed, as well as the correlations between the defined changes and a variety of natural and cultural considerations.
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