U.S. entomologist Paul Ehrlich was named Tuesday as the winner of the sixth annual BBVA Foundation Frontiers of Knowledge Award in the Ecology and Conservation Biology category.

The butterfly expert, known worldwide for his 1968 book "The Population Bomb," is a professor of biology at Stanford University.

The panel of judges recognized Ehrlich for having "contributed key conceptual advances in the science of ecology and conservation biology, with a long-standing influence in other academic disciplines."

In a 1964 paper co-authored with Peter Raven, Ehrlich said that the reason there are so many species on Earth is because of co-evolution or the interaction between species, without there being any genetic exchange.

That is, interactions between plants and animals organize the evolution of species and, therefore, this is a key element in the generation of biodiversity.

More recently, Ehrlich provided a scientific basis for the need to replace ecological restoration or repopulation of species with what he calls intervention ecology: replacing the ecological systems that maintain them.

The BBVA Foundation established its Frontiers of Knowledge Awards in 2008. EFE