Sunday, September 03, 2006

Article of the week: Corridors Increase Plant Species Richness at Large Scales

Habitat corridorsEllen I. Damschen, Nick M. Haddad, John L. Orrock, Joshua J. Tewksbury & Douglas J. Levey, Corridors Increase Plant Species Richness at Large Scales, 313 Science 1284 (Sept. 1, 2006) (DOI: 10.1126/science.1130098):

Habitat fragmentation is one of the largest threats to biodiversity. Landscape corridors, which are hypothesized to reduce the negative consequences of fragmentation, have become common features of ecological management plans worldwide. Despite their popularity, there is little evidence documenting the effectiveness of corridors in preserving biodiversity at large scales. Using a large-scale replicated experiment, we showed that habitat patches connected by corridors retain more native plant species than do isolated patches, that this difference increases over time, and that corridors do not promote invasion by exotic species. Our results support the use of corridors in biodiversity conservation.

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