Article

Quantifying the biodiversity value of tropical primary, secondary, and plantation forests. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA

Faculty of Forestry, University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (Impact Factor: 9.67). 12/2007; 104(47):18555-60. DOI: 10.1073/pnas.0703333104
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT

Biodiversity loss from deforestation may be partly offset by the expansion of secondary forests and plantation forestry in the tropics. However, our current knowledge of the value of these habitats for biodiversity conservation is limited to very few taxa, and many studies are severely confounded by methodological shortcomings. We examined the conservation value of tropical primary, secondary, and plantation forests for 15 taxonomic groups using a robust and replicated sample design that minimized edge effects. Different taxa varied markedly in their response to patterns of land use in terms of species richness and the percentage of species restricted to primary forest (varying from 5% to 57%), yet almost all between-forest comparisons showed marked differences in community structure and composition. Cross-taxon congruence in response patterns was very weak when evaluated using abundance or species richness data, but much stronger when using metrics based upon community similarity. Our results show that, whereas the biodiversity indicator group concept may hold some validity for several taxa that are frequently sampled (such as birds and fruit-feeding butterflies), it fails for those exhibiting highly idiosyncratic responses to tropical land-use change (including highly vagile species groups such as bats and orchid bees), highlighting the problems associated with quantifying the biodiversity value of anthropogenic habitats. Finally, although we show that areas of native regeneration and exotic tree plantations can provide complementary conservation services, we also provide clear empirical evidence demonstrating the irreplaceable value of primary forests.

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    • "As a consequence, the analysis of beta diversity (the variation in species composition among sites) has become a key topic in ecology, biogeography, and evolution (Baselga et al. 2012, Beck et al. 2012, Al-Shami et al. 2013, Baselga 2013). This approach has been hailed as one of the most promising methods for quantifying the biodiversity of anthropogenic landscapes, aiding the efficient design of nature conservation areas (Barlow et al. 2007, Gardner et al. 2009, Anderson et al. 2011). Human activities influence central processes in the assembly of biological communities and thus, beta diversity patterns. "

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    • "To that end, we analyzed data from an existing set of Permanent Sample Plots (PSPs) that was established to assist planning of forest management options (Alder et al. 1999) and to provide a ground-based estimation of forest C and C flux associated with selective logging (Fox et al. , 2011b). We used PNG's PSP data to shed light on the impact of selective logging on PNG's forest structure as well as on tree taxonomic diversity, which has shown a significant cross-taxon congruency and can therefore be considered as a proxy for other taxonomic groups (Howard et al. 1998, Kati et al. 2004, Barlow et al. 2007). In particular, we sought to: (1) determine the effect of selective-logging on tree taxonomic composition by using multivariate analyses techniques; (2) assess the impact of selective-logging on indicators such as forest structure, richness, diversity and evenness: (3) analyze changes of these indicators in relation to the years after logging (YAL). "

    Full-text · Article · Jan 2016 · iForest - Biogeosciences and Forestry
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    • "As a consequence, the analysis of beta diversity (the variation in species composition among sites) has become a key topic in ecology, biogeography, and evolution (Baselga et al. 2012, Beck et al. 2012, Al-Shami et al. 2013, Baselga 2013). This approach has been hailed as one of the most promising methods for quantifying the biodiversity of anthropogenic landscapes, aiding the efficient design of nature conservation areas (Barlow et al. 2007, Gardner et al. 2009, Anderson et al. 2011). Human activities influence central processes in the assembly of biological communities and thus, beta diversity patterns. "
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    ABSTRACT: Biodiversity in pristine forest biomes is increasingly disturbed by human activity. Drivers such as logging and climate extremes are thought to collectively erode diversity, but their interactions are not well understood. However, ignoring such complexities may result in poor conservation management decisions. Here, we present the first study dealing with the complexity arising from the effects of interactions of two increasingly important disturbance factors (selective logging and climatic extreme events) on beta diversity patterns at different scales. Specifically, we examined extensive amphibian assemblage datasets obtained within a quasi-experimental pre-/post-harvesting scheme in the lowland rainforests of Central Guyana. Changes in small-scale patterns of beta diversity were not detectable at the higher landscape level, indicating that local-scale dynamics are more informative for evaluating disturbance impacts. The results also underscore the importance of including abundance data when investigating homogenization or heterogenization effects, which should be considered when designing post-logging impact assessments and selecting impact indicators. Moreover, logging should be regarded as a multifaceted driver that contributes to changes in biodiversity patterns in different ways, depending on interactions with other drivers. The effects of extreme climate events were significantly more pronounced in unlogged forest, while logged forest assemblages appeared buffered due to the presence of novel habitats. Imprudent post-logging renaturation measures may thus counteract conservation targets. These findings highlight the fact that indicator bias and unaccounted interactions between multiple drivers can lead to misguided management strategies.
    Full-text · Article · Jan 2016 · Biotropica
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