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Selection: with tag species-richness [70 articles] 


Effects of habitat disturbance on tropical forest biodiversity

Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Vol. 114, No. 23. (06 June 2017), pp. 6056-6061,


[Significance] Biologists believe that a major mass extinction is happening in the tropics. Destruction of forests is a key reason. However, there are no solid predictions of the percentage of species that will go extinct as more and more forests are disturbed. This paper provides estimates based on extrapolating the respective numbers of species in disturbed and undisturbed habitats. It uses a large global database of species inventories at particular sites. Trees and 10 groups of animals are analyzed. All the disturbed ...


Managing alpine forests in a changing climate

In Management Strategies to Adapt Alpine Space Forests to Climate Change Risks (28 August 2013), pp. 369-383,
edited by Gillian Cerbu


[Excerpt: Introduction] There is mounting evidence that Alpine forest ecosystems will not be able to fully absorb the changes in site factors associated with climate change, such as higher temperatures, more intensive drought stress and associated biotic impacts since these changes exceed the adaptive capacity of the trees. The projected changes in temperature by 2.2 to 5.1 K from 1980 to 1999 to 2080 to 2099, for the A1B scenario in southern Europe [1], correspond to an altitudinal shift of 300 to ...

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EU-Forest, a high-resolution tree occurrence dataset for Europe

Scientific Data, Vol. 4 (05 January 2017), 160123,


We present EU-Forest, a dataset that integrates and extends by almost one order of magnitude the publicly available information on European tree species distribution. The core of our dataset (~96% of the occurrence records) came from an unpublished, large database harmonising forest plot surveys from National Forest Inventories on an INSPIRE-compliant 1 km×1 km grid. These new data can potentially benefit several disciplines, including forestry, biodiversity conservation, palaeoecology, plant ecology, the bioeconomy, and pest management. ...


  1. Ozanne, C. M. P., et al., 2003. Biodiversity meets the atmosphere: a global view of forest canopies. Science 301, 183-186.
  2. Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity, 2008. The Convention on Biological Diversity
  3. Bengtsson, J., Nilsson, S. G., Franc, A., Menozzi, P., 2000. Biodiversity, disturbances, ecosystem function and management of European forests. Forest Ecology and Management 132 (1), 39-50. , INRMM-MiD:12124487 .
  4. Kerley, G. I. H., Kowalczyk,

Forest value: more than commercial

Science, Vol. 354, No. 6319. (23 December 2016), pp. 1541-1541,


[Excerpt] [...] Postulating a positive relation between tree species richness and commercial value could potentially have adverse environmental consequences. For example, concluding that megadiverse tropical forests have innate commercial value would make it unnecessary to supplement this supposed value with rewards for landowners who preserve their native forests. Landowners might then continue to convert such forests to profitable monocultures [...] which have real commercial value. Species-rich forests indeed have an extremely high conservation and ecosystem service value, but their commercial value ...


Forest value: more than commercial - Response

Science, Vol. 354, No. 6319. (23 December 2016), pp. 1541-1542,


[Excerpt] Paul and Knoke address the commercial value and profitability of forest biodiversity, which differs fundamentally from the economic value that we outlined in our Research Article. [...] Our estimates pertain to the sole contribution of tree species diversity, as it exists today, to global forest productivity, from which the economic value accrues. Our analysis—which includes nonmarket values not commonly captured in commercial forestry but excludes the contribution of forest biodiversity to carbon sequestration, wildlife habitat, and aesthetic and cultural values—reflects ...


Factors determining low Mediterranean ecosystems resilience to fire: the case of Pinus halepensis forests

In Ecology, Conservation and Management of Mediterranean Climate Ecosystems - Proceedings of the 10th International Conference on Mediterranean Climate Ecosystems (2004), 20


Factors acting as drivers of low resilience to fire in Pinus halepensis ecosystems are being examined. The commonest factor seems to be fire interval. From the several time windows examined, that of, the shortest one ever reported in this type of communities (3 years only) seemed to be the most crucial. From the plant species previously existing on the site woody and herbaceous obligate seeders are mainly affected by this factor. Other factors, affecting mainly pine regeneration, are the abundance of Quercus coccifera individuals in the ...


Vegetation response to a short interval between high-severity wildfires in a mixed-evergreen forest

Journal of Ecology, Vol. 97, No. 1. (January 2009), pp. 142-154,


[::] Variations in disturbance regime strongly influence ecosystem structure and function. A prominent form of such variation is when multiple high-severity wildfires occur in rapid succession (i.e. short-interval (SI) severe fires, or ‘re-burns’). These events have been proposed as key mechanisms altering successional rates and pathways. [::] We utilized a natural experiment afforded by two overlapping wildfires occurring within a 15-year interval in forests of the Klamath–Siskiyou Mountains, Oregon (USA). We tested for unique effects of a SI fire (15-year interval before ...


Positive biodiversity-productivity relationship predominant in global forests

Science, Vol. 354, No. 6309. (14 October 2016), aaf8957,


[Abstract] The biodiversity-productivity relationship (BPR) is foundational to our understanding of the global extinction crisis and its impacts on ecosystem functioning. Understanding BPR is critical for the accurate valuation and effective conservation of biodiversity. Using ground-sourced data from 777,126 permanent plots, spanning 44 countries and most terrestrial biomes, we reveal a globally consistent positive concave-down BPR, showing that continued biodiversity loss would result in an accelerating decline in forest productivity worldwide. The value of biodiversity in maintaining commercial forest productivity alone—US$166 billion ...


Colchic and Hyrcanian forests of the Caucasus: similarities, differences and conservation status

Flora Mediterranea, Vol. 25, No. Special Issue. (26 November 2015),
Keywords: abies-nordmanniana   acer-insigne   acer-velutinum   albizzia-julibrissin   alnus-barbata   alnus-subcordata   ancient-forest   ancient-forest-plant-species   arachne-colchica   betula-litwinowii   betula-medwedewii   biodiversity   buxus-colchicus   buxus-hyrcana   carpinus-caucasica   castanea-sativa   caucasus   colchic-region   comparison   corylus-colchica   danae-racemosa   daphne-alboviana   daphne-pontica   dioscorea-caucasica   diospyros-lotus   ecological-zones   ecosystem-conservation   epigaea-gaultherioides   fagus-orientalis   forest-resources   gleditcia-caspica   hedera-colchica   hedera-pastuchovii   hypericum-androsaemum   hypericum-inodorum   hyrcanian-region   ilex-colchica   ilex-hyrcana   laurocerasus-officinalis   parrotia-persica   philadelphus-caucasicus   picea-orientalis   protected-areas   protection   pterocarya-fraxinifolia   quercus-castaneifolia   quercus-hartwissiana   quercus-imeretina   quercus-macranthera   quercus-pontica   rainforest   rhamnus-imeretina   rhododendron-caucasicum   rhododendron-ponticum   rhododendron-smirnowii   rhododendron-ungernii   ruscus-colchicus   ruscus-hyrcanus   sorbus-aucuparia   sorbus-caucasigena   sorbus-subfusca   species-richness   staphylea-colchica   temperate-forests   vaccinium-arctostaphylos   viburnum-orientale   zelkova-carpinifolia  


Along with high degree of vascular plant endemism (more than 25%) the existence of two refugia of the Tertiary flora – Colchic and Hyrcanian – are the most unique features of the Caucasus ecoregion. Likewise, Colchic and Hyrcanian forests are classified as temperate rainforests.There are certain physical-geographical and biological similarities and even more differences between Colchic and Hyrcanian regions, reflected on compositions of flora, types of vegetation zonation, as well as spectrums of vegetation formations. An “individualities” of these two unique nature phenomena definethe necessity of their ...


Evolution: why some groups have more species

Nature, Vol. 537, No. 7620. (14 September 2016), pp. 282-282,


[Excerpt] [...] Across the tree of life, some groups have many more species than others. To find out why, Joshua Scholl and John Wiens at the University of Arizona in Tucson collated published data on the number of species and their phylogenetic relationships in each group of living organisms. Contrary to some hypotheses, older groups did not have more species than young groups. Instead, the authors found that the balance of speciation and extinction over time, known as the diversification rate, determined ...


Diversification rates and species richness across the Tree of Life

Proceedings of the Royal Society B, Vol. 283, No. 1838. (14 September 2016), 20161334,


Species richness varies dramatically among clades across the Tree of Life, by over a million-fold in some cases (e.g. placozoans versus arthropods). Two major explanations for differences in richness among clades are the clade-age hypothesis (i.e. species-rich clades are older) and the diversification-rate hypothesis (i.e. species-rich clades diversify more rapidly, where diversification rate is the net balance of speciation and extinction over time). Here, we examine patterns of variation in diversification rates across the Tree of Life. We address how rates ...


Addition of multiple limiting resources reduces grassland diversity

Nature, Vol. 537, No. 7618. (24 August 2016), pp. 93-96,


Niche dimensionality provides a general theoretical explanation for biodiversitymore niches, defined by more limiting factors, allow for more ways that species can coexist. Because plant species compete for the same set of limiting resources, theory predicts that addition of a limiting resource eliminates potential trade-offs, reducing the number of species that can coexist. Multiple nutrient limitation of plant production is common and therefore fertilization may reduce diversity by reducing the number or dimensionality of belowground limiting factors. At the same time, ...


Ecology: more is less

Nature, Vol. 537, No. 7618. (31 August 2016), pp. 42-42,


[Excerpt] Plants compete for the same resources, such as nutrients, light and water. Because these resources are often limited, the coexistence of plant species requires the creation of trade-offs in resource use. In this issue, Harpole et al. report that increasing a limited nutrient in grassland can eliminate these potential trade-offs, reducing overall species diversity (W. S. Harpole et al. Nature 537, 93–96; 2016). [\n] The authors considered 45 grassland sites across 6 continents, and measured species diversity in response to various ...


Grassland species loss resulting from reduced niche dimension

Nature, Vol. 446, No. 7137. (25 March 2007), pp. 791-793,


Intact ecosystems contain large numbers of competing but coexisting species. Although numerous alternative theories have provided potential explanations for this high biodiversity, there have been few field experiments testing between these theories. In particular, theory predicts that higher diversity of coexisting competitors could result from greater niche dimensionality1, for example larger numbers of limiting resources or factors. Alternatively, diversity could be independent of niche dimensionality because large numbers of species can coexist when limited by just one or two factors if ...


Size asymmetry of resource competition and the structure of plant communities

Journal of Ecology, Vol. 104, No. 4. (July 2016), pp. 899-910,


Plant communities show two general responses to gradients of soil resources: a decrease in species richness at high levels of resource availability and an associated shift in species composition from small and slow-growing species to large and fast-growing species. Models attempting to explain these responses have usually focused on a single pattern and provided contradicting predictions concerning the underlying mechanisms. [\n] We use an extension of Tilman's resource competition model to investigate the hypothesis that both patterns may ...


Size asymmetry of resource competition and the structure of plant communities: commentary on DeMalach et al 2016

Journal of Ecology, Vol. 104, No. 4. (July 2016), pp. 911-912,


[Excerpt] The hump-back relationship between diversity and productivity is one of the well-known patterns in ecology that have defied unequivocal explanation (Mittelbach et al. 2001; Šímová, Li & Storch 2013). While it has often been argued that the decline of species richness under high productivity is due to more intense competition, it has never been made fully clear why extinction under high productivity should be more likely compared to low productivity. DeMalach et al. (2016) present a simple and elegant explanation: it ...


Competition for light causes plant biodiversity loss after eutrophication

Science, Vol. 324, No. 5927. (30 April 2009), pp. 636-638,


Human activities have increased the availability of nutrients in terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems. In grasslands, this eutrophication causes loss of plant species diversity, but the mechanism of this loss has been difficult to determine. Using experimental grassland plant communities, we found that addition of light to the grassland understory prevented the loss of biodiversity caused by eutrophication. There was no detectable role for competition for soil resources in diversity loss. Thus, competition for light is a major mechanism of plant diversity ...


Community genetics: resource addition has opposing effects on genetic and species diversity in a 150-year experiment

Ecology Letters, Vol. 12, No. 2. (February 2009), pp. 165-170,


We used the Park Grass Experiment, begun in 1856, to test alternative hypotheses about the relationship between genetic diversity and plant species diversity. The niche variation hypothesis predicts that populations with few interspecific competitors and hence broader niches are expected to contain greater genetic diversity. The coexistence hypothesis predicts that genetic diversity within species favours coexistence among species and therefore species and genetic diversity should be positively correlated. Amplified Fragment Length Polymorphism (AFLP) markers were used to measure the genetic diversity ...


Effects of resource additions on species richness and ANPP in an alpine meadow community

Journal of Plant Ecology, Vol. 3, No. 1. (01 March 2010), pp. 25-31,


[Aims] Theories based on resource additions indicate that plant species richness is mainly determined by the number of limiting resources. However, the individual effects of various limiting resources on species richness and aboveground net primary productivity (ANPP) are less well understood. Here, we analyzed potential linkages between additions of limiting resources, species loss and ANPP increase and further explored the underlying mechanisms. [Methods] Resources (N, P, K and water) were added in a completely randomized block design to alpine meadow plots in ...


Nutrient co-limitation of primary producer communities

Ecology Letters, Vol. 14, No. 9. (September 2011), pp. 852-862,


Synergistic interactions between multiple limiting resources are common, highlighting the importance of co-limitation as a constraint on primary production. Our concept of resource limitation has shifted over the past two decades from an earlier paradigm of single-resource limitation towards concepts of co-limitation by multiple resources, which are predicted by various theories. Herein, we summarise multiple-resource limitation responses in plant communities using a dataset of 641 studies that applied factorial addition of nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P) in freshwater, marine and terrestrial ...


Has land use pushed terrestrial biodiversity beyond the planetary boundary? A global assessment

Science, Vol. 353, No. 6296. (14 July 2016), pp. 288-291,


[Crossing “safe” limits for biodiversity loss] The planetary boundaries framework attempts to set limits for biodiversity loss within which ecological function is relatively unaffected. Newbold et al. present a quantitative global analysis of the extent to which the proposed planetary boundary has been crossed (see the Perspective by Oliver). Using over 2 million records for nearly 40,000 terrestrial species, they modeled the response of biodiversity to land use and related pressures and then estimated, at a spatial resolution of ∼1 km2, the ...


Predicting plant species richness in a managed forest

Forest Ecology and Management, Vol. 180, No. 1-3. (July 2003), pp. 583-593,


This paper describes an attempt to predict ground flora species richness under various forest management scenarios. The approach is based on a geographic information system (GIS) and uses three standard map layers of topography, soils and stands to derive environmental gradients of light, nutrients, water and disturbance. A simple floristic survey provides the data necessary to relate plant distribution with environmental variables. The potential distribution of 60 understorey plant species is modelled based on the four derived gradients. The sum of ...


The effect of species geographical distribution estimation methods on richness and phylogenetic diversity estimates

International Journal of Geographical Information Science, Vol. 26, No. 11. (1 November 2012), pp. 2097-2109,


Diversity assessments are widely used in various fields of knowledge and rely on good estimates of species distribution. There are several methods available to estimate species distribution and the effect of using them is not clearly understood. In this research, we assess the effect of species distributions derived from four geographical distribution estimation methods on derived species richness and phylogenetic diversity (PD). We used the following four most common approaches to determine species geographical distributions: (1) range-wide occurrences are records of ...


Influence of different species range types on the perception of macroecological patterns

Systematics and Biodiversity, Vol. 9, No. 2. (1 June 2011), pp. 159-170,


In the face of increasing availability and use of distribution data, large-scale approaches of mapping species distribution patterns have become a central component of development of large-scale conservation policies. Particularly in tropical regions and for non-vertebrate taxa, knowledge on distribution patterns at large spatial extents remains woefully limited. Datasets are often geographically and taxonomically incomplete, have presence-only character and lack abundance information. One intermediate step for the application of such data common to most approaches is the construction of species geographic ...


Using higher-taxon richness as a surrogate for species richness: II - local applications

Proceedings of the Royal Society of London B: Biological Sciences, Vol. 263, No. 1376. (22 November 1996), pp. 1571-1575,


Recent analyses confirm that urgent attempts to catalogue the distribution of biological diversity may be facilitated by focusing at the level of genera or families rather than species. However, questions remain over the application of higher-taxon surveys to identify networks of priority areas for conservation action. Is the close spatial match between species and higher-taxon richness at global and regional scales reiterated when sites are locally distributed? How much money is saved by the higher-taxon approach? And how does using genus ...


Seven shortfalls that beset large-scale knowledge of biodiversity

Annual Review of Ecology, Evolution, and Systematics, Vol. 46, No. 1. (2015), pp. 523-549,


Ecologists and evolutionary biologists are increasingly using big-data approaches to tackle questions at large spatial, taxonomic, and temporal scales. However, despite recent efforts to gather two centuries of biodiversity inventories into comprehensive databases, many crucial research questions remain unanswered. Here, we update the concept of knowledge shortfalls and review the tradeoffs between generality and uncertainty. We present seven key shortfalls of current biodiversity data. Four previously proposed shortfalls pinpoint knowledge gaps for species taxonomy (Linnean), distribution (Wallacean), abundance (Prestonian), and evolutionary ...


The effect of biodiversity on tree productivity: from temperate to boreal forests

Global Ecology and Biogeography, Vol. 20, No. 1. (1 January 2011), pp. 170-180,


[Aim] An important issue regarding biodiversity concerns its influence on ecosystem functioning. Experimental work has led to the proposal of mechanisms such as niche complementarity. However, few attempts have been made to confirm these in natural systems, especially in forests. Furthermore, one of the most interesting unresolved questions is whether the effects of complementarity on ecosystem functioning (EF) decrease in favour of competitive exclusions over an increasing productivity gradient. Using records from permanent forest plots, we asked the following questions. (1) ...


Tree neighbourhood matters - Tree species composition drives diversity-productivity patterns in a near-natural beech forest

Forest Ecology and Management, Vol. 335 (January 2015), pp. 225-234,


[Highlights] [::] We test tree diversity–productivity relationships in a temperate beech forest. [::] Beech and hornbeam trees grew faster in more diverse neighbourhoods. [::] Complementarity effects were driven by differences in species’ competitive strengths. [::] Small scale admixture with patches of different species promotes tree growth. [Abstract] European beech forest with a variable admixture is one of the most important forest types in Central Europe. Growing evidence has demonstrated the positive effect of increased biodiversity on vital forest ecosystem functions and services such as productivity and nutrient ...


Diversity increases carbon storage and tree productivity in Spanish forests

Global Ecology and Biogeography, Vol. 23, No. 3. (1 March 2014), pp. 311-322,


[Aim] Biodiversity loss could reduce primary productivity and the carbon storage provided by forests; however, the mechanisms underpinning the effects of biodiversity on multiple ecosystem functions are not completely understood. Spanish forests are of particular interest because of the broad variation in environmental conditions and management history. We tested for the existence of a relationship between diversity effects and both carbon storage and tree productivity, and examined the relative importance of complementarity and selection mechanisms in a wide variety of forests, ...


Effects of habitat fragmentation on biodiversity

Annual Review of Ecology, Evolution, and Systematics, Vol. 34, No. 1. (2003), pp. 487-515,


The literature on effects of habitat fragmentation on biodiversity is huge. It is also very diverse, with different authors measuring fragmentation in different ways and, as a consequence, drawing different conclusions regarding both the magnitude and direction of its effects. Habitat fragmentation is usually defined as a landscape-scale process involving both habitat loss and the breaking apart of habitat. Results of empirical studies of habitat fragmentation are often difficult to interpret because (a) many researchers measure fragmentation at the patch scale, ...


Downscaling European species atlas distributions to a finer resolution: implications for conservation planning

Global Ecology and Biogeography, Vol. 14, No. 1. (1 January 2005), pp. 17-30,


[Aim] One of the limitations to using species’ distribution atlases in conservation planning is their coarse resolution relative to the needs of local planners. In this study, a simple approach to downscale original species atlas distributions to a finer resolution is outlined. If such a procedure yielded accurate downscaled predictions, then it could be an aid to using available distribution atlases in real-world local conservation decisions. [Location]  Europe. [Methods]  An iterative procedure based on generalized additive modelling is used to downscale original ...


Improving biodiversity indicators of sustainable forest management: tree genus abundance rather than tree genus richness and dominance for understory vegetation in French lowland oak hornbeam forests

Forest Ecology and Management, Vol. 258 (06 December 2009), pp. S176-S186,


Two different biodiversity indicators based on tree species diversity are being used, in Europe and France respectively, without strong prior scientific validation: (1) tree species or genus richness as a positive indicator, and (2) relative abundance of the main species (“dominance”) as a negative indicator. We tested the relevance of these ecological models as indicators of understory vegetation biodiversity by comparing them to other ecological models, mainly related to tree species composition and abundance. We developed Bayesian statistical models for richness ...


The return of the variance: intraspecific variability in community ecology

Trends in Ecology & Evolution, Vol. 27, No. 4. (1 April 2012), pp. 244-252,


Despite being recognized as a promoter of diversity and a condition for local coexistence decades ago, the importance of intraspecific variance has been neglected over time in community ecology. Recently, there has been a new emphasis on intraspecific variability. Indeed, recent developments in trait-based community ecology have underlined the need to integrate variation at both the intraspecific as well as interspecific level. We introduce new T-statistics (T for trait), based on the comparison of intraspecific and interspecific variances of functional traits ...


Why intraspecific trait variation matters in community ecology

Trends in Ecology & Evolution, Vol. 26, No. 4. (01 April 2011), pp. 183-192,


Natural populations consist of phenotypically diverse individuals that exhibit variation in their demographic parameters and intra- and inter-specific interactions. Recent experimental work indicates that such variation can have significant ecological effects. However, ecological models typically disregard this variation and focus instead on trait means and total population density. Under what situations is this simplification appropriate? Why might intraspecific variation alter ecological dynamics? In this review we synthesize recent theory and identify six general mechanisms by which trait variation changes the outcome ...


Changes to plant species richness in forest fragments: fragment age, disturbance and fire history may be as important as area

Journal of Biogeography, Vol. 29, No. 5-6. (May 2002), pp. 749-765,


[Aim] The impact of fragmentation on a eucalypt forest was investigated by examining the effects of fragment size, time since fragmentation, degree of anthropogenic disturbance to fragment interiors, and time since fire, on native and exotic plant species richness per unit area. [Location] Two areas of dry open-forest were studied on the central coast of New South Wales in south-eastern Australia. Fifty forest fragments were located at Tomago, an area progressively fragmented over the last 60 years, most recently by clearing for sand-mining. Also ...


Erasing a European biodiversity hot-spot: open woodlands, veteran trees and mature forests succumb to forestry intensification, succession, and logging in a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve

Journal for Nature Conservation, Vol. 22, No. 1. (February 2014), pp. 35-41,


Open woodlands are among the biologically richest habitats of the temperate zone. Although open woodlands were much more common in the past and covered large areas of Europe, their original cover and magnitude of their loss remain mostly unknown. Here, we quantify the loss of open woodlands and assess the potential for their restoration in an internationally protected biodiversity hot-spot, floodplain woodlands of lower Thaya and March rivers of Dolní Morava UNESCO Biosphere Reserve in Czech Republic. Aerial photographs from years ...


Multiscale performance of landscape metrics as indicators of species richness of plants, insects and vertebrates

Ecological Indicators, Vol. 31 (August 2013), pp. 41-48,


Landscape metrics are widely used to investigate the spatial structure of landscapes. Numerous metrics are currently available, yet only little empirical research has comparatively examined their indicator value for species richness for several taxa at several scales. Taking a Mediterranean forest landscape – Dadia National Park (Greece) – as a case study area, we explored the performance of 52 landscape level landscape metrics as indicators of species richness for six taxa (woody plants, orchids, orthopterans, amphibians, reptiles, and small terrestrial birds) ...


Relative contribution of edge and interior zones to patch size effect on species richness: an example for woody plants

Forest Ecology and Management, Vol. 259, No. 3. (18 January 2010), pp. 266-274,


In order to understand the capacity of habitats to conserve species, many authors have searched for a species–area relationship (SAR) to evaluate the effect of patch size on species richness in habitat fragments. However, a range of different processes may underlie or obscure this relationship. For woody plant species in forest fragments, as for other taxa, considering forest edges separately in the investigation of SAR is particularly relevant. The objective of our study was to evaluate edge influence on SAR in ...


Landownership is an unexplored determinant of forest understory plant composition in Northern France

Forest Ecology and Management, Vol. 306 (October 2013), pp. 281-291,


[Highlights] [::] Few studies have investigated the influence of forest landownership on biodiversity. [::] We analysed the effect of landownership on plant species and plant traits in 38,751 plots. [::] 70% of the species showed significant differences in frequency among landownerships. [::] Species in public forests were more often urbanophobic and ancient forest species. [::] Implications for large-scaled biodiversity conservation strategies are discussed. [Abstract] Few studies have investigated the influence of landownership on biodiversity. Therefore we analysed how the presence of forest understory plant species varied according to ...


Understorey plant species richness and composition in metropolitan forest archipelagos: effects of forest size, adjacent land use and distance to the edge

Global Ecology and Biogeography, Vol. 15, No. 1. (January 2006), pp. 50-62,


[Aim] To address the relative role of adjacent land use, distance to forest edge, forest size and their interactions on understorey plant species richness and composition in perimetropolitan forests. [Location] The metropolitan area of Barcelona, north-eastern Spain. [Methods]  Twenty sampling sites were distributed in two forest size-categories: small forest patches (8–90 ha) and large forest areas (> 18,000 ha). For each forest-size category, five sites were placed adjacent to crops and five sites adjacent to urban areas. Vascular plant species were recorded and human ...


How does forest landscape structure explain tree species richness in a Mediterranean context?

Biodiversity and Conservation In Biodiversity and Conservation, Vol. 17, No. 5. (1 May 2008), pp. 1227-1240,


Although the strong relationship between vegetation and climatic factors is widely accepted, other landscape composition and configuration characteristics could be significantly related with vegetation diversity patterns at different scales. Variation partitioning was conducted in order to analyse to what degree forest landscape structure, compared to other spatial and environmental factors, explained forest tree species richness in 278 UTM 10 × 10 km cells in the Mediterranean region of Catalonia (NE Spain). Tree species richness variation was decomposed through linear regression into three groups of ...


Spatial and temporal heterogeneity of species diversity in a Mediterranean ecosystem following fire

International Journal of Wildland Fire, Vol. 7, No. 4. (1997), 307,


This study examines species richness, species diversity (H'-Shannon-Weiner Index) and species dominance (C- Simpson-Index) in a Mediterranean ecosystem as a function of time elapsed since fire and the extent to which micro-climate regulates these indexes after wildfire occurrence. The study was conducted in an eastern Mediterranean ecosystem (Israel) over three consecutive years. About 400 ha of a mixed oak - pine forest burned in the summer of 1983 and part of it also suffered from a repeat fire in the summer ...


Differential responses of ecosystem components to a low-intensity fire in a Mediterranean forest: a three-year case study

Community Ecology, Vol. 14, No. 1. (June 2013), pp. 110-120,


Mediterranean forests are especially prone to fire, a periodic disturbance that affects all the ecosystem components in different ways. Gathering knowledge on the particular responses and rate of recovery of multiple ecosystem components following a wildfire is crucial to reliably evaluate its consequences on biodiversity. Using eight sampling transects, we studied the changes in four ecosystem components (topsoil, plants, carabids, and staphylinids) during three years after a spring wildfire in a Quercus pyrenaica forest; and compared them with the surrounding unburnt forest (hereafter control). We ...


Vegetation cover and species richness after recurrent forest fires in the Eastern Mediterranean ecosystem of Mount Carmel, Israel

Science of The Total Environment (February 2016),


[Highlights] [::] Vegetation cover changes after recurrent fires, and serve as a good indicator of fire influence. [::] In most fire-damaged areas dominant cover was composed from shrubs and dwarf-shrubs. [::] Tree cover was severely damaged after recurrent fires, and showed drastic decrease. [::] Species richness increased mainly in the first decade after the recurrent fires, and decreased when the forest canopy began to close. [::] Fire recurrence with short intervals (4–6 years) may lower the rehabilitated processes of the ecosystem and change its equilibrium. [Abstract] Fire is ...


Landslide-facilitated species diversity in a beech-dominant forest

Ecological Research In Ecological Research, Vol. 28, No. 1. (4 November 2013), pp. 29-41,


To evaluate the extent to which landslides affect community dynamics and consequent species diversity in a beech-dominated forest, differences in the composition and size structure of tree species were compared between landslide and adjacent stable (control) stands. Demography and changes in size were compared between the two stands over a 5-year period about 60 years after a landslide. In the control stand, replacement occurred even amongst late-successional species, with beech ( Fagus crenata )—the most dominant species—increasing in relative abundance. In ...


A meta-analysis of the effect of forest management for timber on understory plant species diversity in temperate forests

Forest Ecology and Management, Vol. 303 (September 2013), pp. 81-90,


[Highlights] [::] We synthesized data from 100 studies to examine understory response to forest harvesting. [::] Across all studies there was no significant effect from timber harvesting on understory richness. [::] Selection harvesting had a positive effect on understory species richness. [::] Even-aged silvicultural treatments showed effects after 50 years or more, while early successional stages did not. [::] Thinning treatments had no effect on understory richness. [Abstract] Many studies have examined affects of forest management—particularly regeneration treatments—for timber on understory plant diversity. These studies taken independently show ...


Integrating biogeographical processes and local community assembly

Journal of Biogeography, Vol. 39, No. 4. (April 2012), pp. 627-628,


[Excerpt] The nature of ecological communities has been a longstanding question in ecology since the debate between F.E. Clements and H.A. Gleason (Ricklefs, 2008). While Clements (1936) viewed communities as closed structures that tend to persist through time, Gleason (1926) perceived them as dynamic entities resulting from the mere coincidence of species’ distributions in space and time. [...] The absence of large-scale processes from Clements’ ideas – which focus exclusively on local interactions – may create the false impression that community ...


SESAM - a new framework integrating macroecological and species distribution models for predicting spatio-temporal patterns of species assemblages

Journal of Biogeography, Vol. 38, No. 8. (August 2011), pp. 1433-1444,


Two different approaches currently prevail for predicting spatial patterns of species assemblages. The first approach (macroecological modelling, MEM) focuses directly on realized properties of species assemblages, whereas the second approach (stacked species distribution modelling, S-SDM) starts with constituent species to approximate the properties of assemblages. Here, we propose to unify the two approaches in a single ‘spatially explicit species assemblage modelling’ (SESAM) framework. This framework uses relevant designations of initial species source pools for modelling, macroecological variables, and ecological assembly rules to constrain predictions of the richness and composition ...


Stacking species distribution models and adjusting bias by linking them to macroecological models

Global Ecology and Biogeography, Vol. 23, No. 1. (1 January 2014), pp. 99-112,


[Aim] Species distribution models (SDMs) are common tools in biogeography and conservation ecology. It has been repeatedly claimed that aggregated (stacked) SDMs (S-SDMs) will overestimate species richness. One recently suggested solution to this problem is to use macroecological models of species richness to constrain S-SDMs. Here, we examine current practice in the development of S-SDMs to identify methodological problems, provide tools to overcome these issues, and quantify the performance of correctly stacked S-SDMs alongside macroecological models. [Locations] Barents Sea, Europe and Dutch Wadden Sea. [Methods] We present formal mathematical arguments demonstrating how S-SDMs should ...


Species richness at continental scales is dominated by ecological limits

The American Naturalist, Vol. 185, No. 5. (1 May 2015), pp. 572-583,


Explaining variation in species richness among provinces and other large geographic regions remains one of the most challenging problems at the intersection of ecology and evolution. Here we argue that empirical evidence supports a model whereby ecological factors associated with resource availability regulate species richness at continental scales. Any large-scale predictive model for biological diversity must explain three robust patterns in the natural world. First, species richness for evolutionary biotas is highly correlated with resource-associated surrogate variables, including area, temperature, and ...

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