Rachakonda Sreekar

Rachakonda Sreekar
National University of Singapore | NUS · Department of Biological Sciences

PhD
Nature-based Solutions

About

48
Publications
21,115
Reads
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571
Citations
Introduction
I have a strong interest in ecological theory and enjoy developing models that improve our predicting capabilities. I am currently interested in designing optimal landscapes that sequester carbon, improve livelihoods, and benefit biodiversity.
Additional affiliations
April 2019 - present
The Czech Academy of Sciences
Position
  • PostDoc Position
September 2015 - March 2019
University of Adelaide
Position
  • PhD
January 2015 - July 2015
Xishuangbanna Tropical Botanical Garden
Position
  • Research Associate

Publications

Publications (48)
Article
Protected areas (including other effective area-based conservation measures) are a cornerstone of biodiversity conservation. Many countries are increasingly committed to expanding protected area coverage to 30%, which requires an increase in global annual spending from $24b to ~$140b (between $103b and $177b). We find that by trading nature-based c...
Article
Conversion of rainforests into agriculture resulted in massive changes in species diversity and community structure. Although the conservation of the remaining rainforests is of utmost importance, identifying and creating biodiversity‐friendly agriculture landscape is vital for preserving biodiversity and their functions. Biodiversity studies in ag...
Article
1. A single adverse environment event can threaten the survival of small-ranged species, while random fluctuations in population size increase the extinction risk of less-abundant species. The abundance–range size relationship (ARR) is usually positive, which means that smaller-ranged species are often of low abundance and might face both problems...
Article
Full-text available
In the last 50 years, intensive agriculture has replaced large tracts of rainforests. Such changes in land use are driving niche-based ecological processes that determine local community assembly. However, little is known about the relative importance of these anthropogenic niche-based processes, in comparison to climatic niche-based processes and...
Article
Full-text available
The relationship between beta-diversity and latitude still remains to be a core question in ecology because of the lack of consensus between studies. One hypothesis for the lack of consensus between studies is that spatial scale changes the relationship between latitude and beta-diversity. Here, we test this hypothesis using tree data from 15 large...
Preprint
The trophic interactions between plants, insect herbivores and their predators are complex and prone to trophic cascades. Theory predicts that predators increase plant biomass by feeding on herbivores. However, it remains unclear whether different types of predators regulate herbivores to the same degree, and how intraguild predation impacts these...
Article
Full-text available
Natural climate solutions (NCS) are an essential complement to climate mitigation and have been increasingly incorporated into international mitigation strategies. Yet, with the ongoing population growth, allocating natural areas for NCS may compete with other socioeconomic priorities, especially urban development and food security. Here, we projec...
Article
Full-text available
• When searching for food, great tits (Parus major) can use herbivore-induced plant volatiles (HIPVs) as an indicator of arthropod presence. Their ability to detect HIPVs was shown to be learned, and not innate, yet the flexibility and generalization of learning remain unclear. • We studied if, and if so how, naïve and trained great tits (Parus maj...
Article
Full-text available
Hunting and deforestation are the two biggest threats to vertebrates in Southeast Asia. In the last 50 years, monoculture rubber plantations replaced large areas of tropical rainforests in Xishuangbanna, southwest China. We set up camera traps at 109 stations (57 in forest reserves and 52 in rubber plantations) to determine the distribution of mamm...
Article
Despite the important contribution of fungi to forest health, biomass turnover and carbon cycling, little is known about the factors that influence fungal phenology. Therefore, in order to further our understanding on how macrofungal fruiting patterns change along a gradient from temperate to tropical climate zones, we investigated the phenological...
Article
Full-text available
Many agamid lizards are known to show sexual dimorphism in body shape, colour and ornamentation or a combination of these traits. Adult males of Salea horsfieldii have a discontinuous dorsal crest at the nuchal region, which is a sexually dimorphic character. However, there is no information about the age or size at which this dimorphic ornamentati...
Article
Large tracts of tropical rainforests are being converted into intensive agricul- tural lands. Such anthropogenic disturbances are known to reduce species turnover across horizontal distances. But it is not known if they can also reduce species turnover across vertical distances (elevation), which have steeper climatic differences. We measured turno...
Article
Full-text available
Protected areas (including areas that are nominally fully protected and those managed for multiple uses) encompass about a quarter of the total tropical forest estate. Despite growing interest in the relative value of community-managed lands and protected areas, knowledge about the biodiversity value that each sustains remains scarce in the biodive...
Article
Classical biological control agents fail to achieve an impact on their hosts for a variety of reasons and an understanding of why they fail can help shape decisions on subsequent releases. Ornamental Ficus microcarpa is a widely planted avenue fig tree that is invasive in countries where its pollinator (Eupristina verticillata) is also introduced....
Article
Full-text available
Despite being common in the Western Ghats-Sri Lanka biodiversity hotspot, Golden-backed frogs (Hylara-na, Ranidae) remain poorly studied. In this paper, we present some preliminary data on the morphology, behaviour, and habitat use of Hylarana intermedia, a member of the Hylarana aurantiaca species group. We find evidence for female biased size dim...
Article
Full-text available
Although deforestation and forest degradation have long been considered the most significant threats to tropical biodiversity, across Southeast Asia (Northeast India, Indochina, Sundaland, Philippines) substantial areas of natural habitat have few wild animals (>1 kg), bar a few hunting-tolerant species. To document hunting impacts on vertebrate po...
Article
Full-text available
Owls have the potential to be keystone species for conservation in fragmented landscapes, as the absence of these predators could profoundly change community structure. Yet few studies have examined how whole communities of owls respond to fragmentation, especially in the tropics. When evaluating the effect of factors related to fragmentation, such...
Article
Full-text available
Rising global demand for natural rubber is expanding monoculture rubber (Hevea brasilensis) at the expense of natural forests in the Old World tropics. Conversion of forests into rubber plantations has a devastating impact on biodiversity and we have yet to identify management strategies that can mitigate this. We determined the life-history traits...
Article
Full-text available
Traditional assessments of anthropogenic impacts on biodiversity often ignore hunting pressure or use subjective categories (e.g. high, medium or low) that cannot be readily understood by readers or replicated in other studies. Although animals often appear tame in habitats without hunting compared to habitats with hunting, few studies have demonst...
Article
Full-text available
Understory avian insectivores have been found to be especially sensitive to habitat loss and fragmentation, and hence have been suggested to be good indicators of human disturbance. Yet there are regional differences in how these species respond to human disturbance, which might be linked to the timing of the changes and the land-use history. As So...
Article
Full-text available
AimForest fragmentation is often accompanied by an increase in hunting intensity. Both factors are known drivers of species extirpations, but understanding of their independent effects is poor. Our goal was to partition the effects of hunting and fragmentation on bird species extirpations and to identify bird traits that make species more vulnerabl...
Article
Full-text available
The primary approach used to conserve tropical biodiversity is in the establishment of protected areas. However, many tropical nature reserves are performing poorly and interventions in the broader landscape may be essential for conserving biodiversity both within reserves and at large. Between October 2010 and 2012, we conducted bird surveys in an...
Article
Full-text available
On 19 December 2013, a dead male Pin-tailed Parrotfinch Erythrura prasina was found on a balcony of a residential complex at Xishuangbanna Tropical Botanical Garden (XTBG), Menglun, Xishuangbanna prefecture, Yunnan province, China. And this is the first record for China for this species.
Article
Full-text available
Animals often evaluate the degree of risk posed by a predator and respond accordingly. Since many predators orient their eyes towards prey while attacking, predator gaze and directness of approach could serve as conspicuous indicators of risk to prey. The ability to perceive these cues and discriminate between high and low predation risk should ben...
Article
Full-text available
Windbreaks often form networks of forest habitats that improve connectivity and thus conserve biodiversity, but little is known of such effects in the tropics. We determined bird species richness and community composition in windbreaks composed of remnant native vegetation amongst tea plantations (natural windbreaks), and compared it with the surro...
Data
Total species abundance in primary forests and windbreaks. Feeding guild codes are: C – carnivore, F – frugivore, G – granivore, I – insectivore and N – nectarivore. Status codes are: * – IUCN Red Data book status (threatened or above), + – endemic to Western Ghats, India. (DOC)
Data
Species detected at each point. Points starting with 'P' are primary forest and with 'D' are natural windbreaks. UTM data available on request from the corresponding author. (XLS)
Data
Mean ± standard deviation for vegetative characteristics of primary forests and natural windbreaks in the uplands of KMTR. Differences among habitat types were tested with two-sample t-tests after 1og10 transforming the variables. Data was obtained from 20 randomly placed 10 x 5m plots in each habitat type. To avoid disturbances, the vegetation was...
Data
Effects of natural windbreaks on bird guild resilience. W and P values are derived from Wilcoxon rank sum test. Positive response indicates increase in richness or abundance in natural windbreaks and NS indicates insignificant effect. (DOC)
Article
Full-text available
We examined the species richness and distribution patterns of reptiles inhabiting the Central Western Ghats Moun-tains of southwestern India. In the past few years, field work by us as well as our colleagues resulted in a steady stream of several new regional records of species of day geckos (Cnemaspis), skinks (Scincidae), shieldtail snakes (Urope...
Article
Full-text available
The usage of invasive tagging methods to assess lizard populations has often been criticised, due to the potential negative effects of marking, which possibly cause increased mortality or altered behaviour. The development of safe, less invasive techniques is essential for improved ecological study and conservation of lizard populations. In this st...
Article
Full-text available
Cnemaspis heteropholis Bauer, 2002 was hitherto defined based only on its holotype, an adult female collected from Gund hill range, Western Ghats, India. Recently we observed adult male and juvenile specimens of this species at Agumbe, ca. 200km south of its type locality and consequently we recharacterize and expand the definition of this species...
Article
Full-text available
Roux’s Forest Lizard, Calotes rouxii (Reptilia: Agamidae), does not exhibit distinct dimorphism characters outside the breeding season. Ornamentation and the swelling around the cloaca in males are the primary characters in determining sex and detectable only during the breeding season. We used univariate and multivariate analyses to determine if o...
Article
Full-text available
We analyzed the species composition and abundance of birds and mammals at a fruiting hemi-epiphytic fig (Ficus caulocarpa) in Maliau Basin, Sabah, Malaysia. Observations were conducted for 32 hours over five days. Forty-four species of birds and three mammal species were recorded. Of these, 28 birds and 2 mammals fed on the figs. In addition, nine...
Article
Full-text available
Report on a predation event by an adult Psammophilus dorsalis on a Hemidactylus treutleri, observed at Rishi Valley, Andhra Pradesh, India. Hemidactylus treutleri is recorded for the first time outside of its type locality extending its range.
Article
Full-text available
We report the rediscovery of Vosmer’s Writhing Skink Lygosoma vosmaerii (Gray, 1839) (Reptilia: Scincidae) based on a specimen collected from Jaggayapet, Krishna district, Andhra Pradesh, which constitutes the second known specimen after the type specimen that was collected 170 years ago. Vosmer’s Writhing Skink differs from the widely-distributed...

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Projects

Projects (3)
Project
To understand the drivers of bird species composition change across a gradient of geographic distance, elevation, and land-use change; and provide information to conserve threatened species and their habitats.
Project
To understand the drivers and consequences of hunting in SE Asian forests, and provide evidence for the development of policy instruments and interventions for biodiversity conservation and sustainable hunting
Project
We have a permanent forest fragment plot network encompassing 48 small plots in Tropical Forest in Yunnan, China, including both large forest reserves and small forest fragments, all embedded within a rubber plantation matrix. Diversity data collected includes plants (inventories of trees, lianas, herbs), vertebrates (camera trap data) and invertebrates (metaDNA methods), plus site-specific environmental data. These permanent plots provide an excellent opportunity to assess the effects of forest fragmentation on multiple aspects of biodiversity, and we encourage other scientists to get involved with new projects. more here: http://www.communityecologyconservation.com