A biotope is a region environmentally uniform in conditions and in the flora and fauna which live there. Within a biocenose, a biotope constitutes a specific ecosystem, which will dynamically tend towards a "temporary" climax. This latter will change with climate, as an evolution of the new biotope. In that way, life can be conserved, though at the expense of species demographical stability and biodiversity.

A biotope is also the quantum unit of a habitat.

The term should not be confused with a biome.

Different life scientists define biotopes in a variety of ways; in the European Union the CORINE commission publishes the CORINE Biotope Manual (ISBN 9992441577) describing and defining hundreds of biotopes.

copyright 2004