Alexander von Humboldt was one of the founders of biogeography and ecology. He had an a crazy upbringing and strange life, but his integrative view of nature and focus on precise measurements had a strong impact on Science.
In 1802, Alexander von Humboldt mapped the distribution of plants and vegetation on the Chimborazo volcano in Ecuador.
In a new paper in PNAS by Naia Morueta-Holme and others explain how they resurveyed Mt. Chimborazo in 2012, 200 years after Humbodlt’s visit, to discover and map what changes had occurred. Their paper includes a fantastic updated version of Humboldt’s map, which supports “Humboldt’s proposal that climate is the primary control on the altitudinal distribution of vegetation”.