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CABI Book Chapter

Forest biodiversity: lessons from history for conservation.

Book cover for Forest biodiversity: lessons from history for conservation.

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Chapter 12 (Page no: 163)

Metapopulation dynamics following habitat loss and recovery: forest herbs in ancient and recent forests.

Many regions of Europe and eastern North America share broadly similar histories of land use over the past several centuries, with varying degrees of forest clearance followed by varying degrees of forest recovery. Here I use metapopulation models to explore the influence of the extent and timing of forest clearance and recovery on patch occupancy of slow-colonizing forest herbs in ancient and recent forests. If forest clearance exceeds the threshold for metapopulation persistence, extinction may require centuries to occur even when clearance is most severe. This suggests a heavy extinction debt for forest herbs in fragmented landscapes. The time between forest clearance and recovery (tc-r) can have a strong influence on metapopulation dynamics. If tc-r is short, patch occupancy in ancient forests (PAO) will start out high, and exert a strong 'colonization pressure' on recent forests, increasing patch occupancy in recent forests (PRO) above its equilibrium value before it ultimately declines towards equilibrium. If tc-r is long, PAO starts out low, and both PAO and PRO rise slowly towards equilibrium. The time required for PRO to reach equilibrium is generally in the order of centuries, and increases with tc-r. The results indicate that there may be long periods of time (decades to centuries) during which patch occupancy increases or decreases even in the absence of directional environmental change.

Other chapters from this book

Chapter: 1 (Page no: 1) What history can teach us about present and future forest biodiversity. Author(s): Verheyen, K. Honnay, O. Bossuyt, B. Hermy, M.
Chapter: 2 (Page no: 11) The Holocene structure of North-west European temperate forest induced from palaeoecological data. Author(s): Bradshaw, R. H. W. Hannon, G. E.
Chapter: 3 (Page no: 27) Landscape changes in the history of the Austrian Alpine Regions: ecological development and the perception of human responsibility. Author(s): Johann, E.
Chapter: 4 (Page no: 41) Natural tree colonization of former agricultural lands in the French Massif Central: impact of past land use on stand structure, soil characteristics and understorey vegetation. Author(s): Prévosto, B. Curt, T. Dambrine, E. Coquillard, P.
Chapter: 5 (Page no: 55) Fire, death and disorder in the forest: 150 years of change in critical ecological structures and processes in boreal Scandinavia. Author(s): Östlund, L.
Chapter: 6 (Page no: 67) Relative importance of habitat quality and forest continuity for the floristic composition of ancient, old and recent woodland. Author(s): Wulf, M.
Chapter: 7 (Page no: 81) Land-use history and forest herb diversity in Tompkins County, New York, USA. Author(s): Flinn, K. M. Marks, P. L.
Chapter: 8 (Page no: 97) Ancient forests in Denmark and the importance of Tilia. Author(s): Lawesson, J. E.
Chapter: 9 (Page no: 117) Ecology and population genetics of Carabus problematicus in Flanders, Belgium: is forest history important? Author(s): Desender, K. Gaublomme, E. Verdyck, P. Dhuyvetter, H. Vos, B. de
Chapter: 10 (Page no: 129) Colonization of oak plantations by forest plants: effects of regional abundance and habitat fragmentation. Author(s): Brunet, J.
Chapter: 11 (Page no: 143) Multiple-scale factors affecting the development of biodiversity in UK plantations. Author(s): Humphrey, J. W. Peace, A. J. Jukes, M. R. Poulsom, E. L.
Chapter: 13 (Page no: 179) Short-term and mid-term response of ground beetle communities (Coleoptera, Carabidae) to disturbance by regeneration felling. Author(s): Richard, E. Gosselin, F. Lhonoré, J.
Chapter: 14 (Page no: 193) Changes in the composition of Wytham Woods (Southern England) 1974-2002, in stands of different origins and past treatment. Author(s): Kirby, K. J.
Chapter: 15 (Page no: 205) Forest history, continuity and dynamic naturalness. Author(s): Westphal, C. Härdtle, W. Oheimb, G. von
Chapter: 16 (Page no: 221) Integrating historical ecology to restore a transitional Pinus palustris community. Author(s): Blank, G. B.
Chapter: 17 (Page no: 233) Is the US concept of 'old growth' relevant to the cultural landscapes of Europe? A UK perspective. Author(s): Alexander, K. N. A. Butler, J. E.
Chapter: 18 (Page no: 247) The use of dendrochronology to evaluate dead wood habitats and management priorities for the ancient oaks of sherwood forest. Author(s): Watkins, C. Lavers, C. Howard, R.
Chapter: 19 (Page no: 269) Forest regulations in the USA: evolving standards for conserving forest biodiversity in the past 300 years. Author(s): Mortimer, M. J.

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