Linkages beyond borders: targeting spatial processes in fragmented urban landscapes
2008 (English)In: Landscape Ecology, ISSN 0921-2973, E-ISSN 1572-9761, Vol. 23, no 6, 717-726 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Management of ecosystems often focuses on specific species chosen for their habitat demand, public appeal, or levels of threat. We propose a complementary framework for choosing focal species, the mobile link concept, which allows managers to focus on spatial processes and deal with multi-scale ecological dynamics. Spatial processes are important for three reasons: maintenance, re-organization, and restoration of ecological values. We illustrate the framework with a case study of the Eurasian Jay, a mobile link species of importance for the oak forest regeneration in the Stockholm National Urban Park, Sweden, and its surroundings. The case study concludes with a conceptual model for how the framework can be applied in management. The model is based on a review of published data complemented with a seed predation experiment and mapping of Jay territories to reduce the risk of applying non-urban site-specific information in an urban setting. Our case study shows that the mobile link approach has several advantages: (1) Reducing the vulnerability of ecological functions to disturbances and fluctuations in resources allocated to management, (2) Reducing management costs by maintaining natural processes, and (3) Maintaining gene flow and genetic diversity at a landscape level. We argue that management that includes mobile link organisms is an important step towards the prevention of ecosystem degradation and biodiversity loss in increasingly fragmented landscapes. Identifying and managing mobile links is a way to align management with the ecologically relevant scales in any landscape.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2008. Vol. 23, no 6, 717-726 p.
Ecological functions, Connectivity, Dispersal, Ecosystem management, Mobile links, Urban ecology
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-22872DOI: 10.1007/s10980-008-9232-9OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-22872DiVA: diva2:189660