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Species and functional diversity in semi-natural grasslands: When local management and landscape context matter
Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Physical Geography and Quaternary Geology (INK). (Landscape Ecology)
Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Physical Geography and Quaternary Geology (INK). (Landscape Ecology)
Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Physical Geography and Quaternary Geology (INK). (Landscape Ecology)
2010 (English)In: / [ed] ECOLOGICAL SOCIETY OF GERMANY, AUSTRIA AND SWITZERLAND, 2010, 129- p.Conference paper, Published paper (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

Change in land-use pattern is identified as the main cause of the current decline in biodiversity. While the influence of human activities on species distribution is noticeable in most ecosystems, historic grassland management has resulted in habitats with exceptionally high plant diversity. Over the last century, however, the extent of these semi-natural grasslands has declined dramatically as a result of conversion and intensification of land-use and abandonment of traditional practices. In addition to the effects of habitat loss on plant diversity, species assemblage in remnant grasslands are expected experience further decline, as extinction is likely to exceed colonization in isolated habitats. This study focuses on the effect of landscape context on species diversity and functional response in semi-natural grasslands. We sampled 50 grassland communities distributed over 22 islands in the Stockholm archipelagos. Using 25 pairs of adjacent habitats, we modeled the effect of land-use on species diversity in grassland communities. Furthermore, we examined the functional response of species assemblages. While our data provide no clear evidences of extinction debt in remnant grasslands, grazing affect small-scale plant diversity. At the habitat-level, however, variation in species diversity is best explained by today’s landscape context, suggesting that other land-use can provide refuges for grassland species and increase connectivity between remnant habitats.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2010. 129- p.
Keyword [en]
Habita loss, fragmentation, diversity, functional traits, metacommunity, grassland
Research subject
Ecological Botany; Plant Ecology; Conservation Biology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-49492OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-49492DiVA: diva2:377743
Conference
The Future of Biodiversity: Genes, Species, Ecosystems
Funder
Formas
Available from: 2010-12-14 Created: 2010-12-14 Last updated: 2014-07-09Bibliographically approved

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