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Geometric constraints in fragmented landscapes: a modelling study

Grant number: 13/26339-4
Support type:Scholarships abroad - Research Internship - Post-doctor
Effective date (Start): May 01, 2014
Effective date (End): August 31, 2014
Field of knowledge:Biological Sciences - Ecology
Principal Investigator:Jean Paul Walter Metzger
Grantee:Jayme Augusto Prevedello
Supervisor abroad: Nicholas J. Gotelli
Home Institution: Instituto de Biociências (IB). Universidade de São Paulo (USP). São Paulo , SP, Brazil
Local de pesquisa : University of Vermont (UVM), United States  
Associated to the scholarship:13/03457-1 - Geometric effects in fragmented landscapes: a new approach for landscape ecology research, BP.PD


The deleterious effects of habitat loss and fragmentation on biodiversity have been documented in a large number of studies, but there is still much uncertainty regarding the causal mechanisms or processes linking landscape changes to corresponding biotic changes. The hypotheses suggested so far to explain these effects usually advocate the influence of ecological processes, such as the dynamic equilibrium between extinction and immigration, the use of biological resources by species and the influence of disturbances. Based on these hypotheses, most studies assume that, in the absence of such ecological processes, the distribution of organisms across habitat areas in the landscape would be uniform. This project question that assumption by recognizing the influence of geometric habitat effects (GHE), which tend to reduce the abundance of organisms in small habitat fragments and near fragment boundaries, even in the absence of additional ecological processes. The central aim of this project is to quantify the influence of GHE on the distribution and abundance of organisms in fragmented landscapes. The main hypothesis is that abundance and richness gradients observed in fragmented landscapes are essentially the consequence of geometric constraints. To quantify the influence of GHE on organisms, we will perform comprehensive simulations with hypothetical landscapes and biological communities, using mechanistic, individual-based models. The explicit incorporation of GHE into landscape-scale studies can bring important theoretical and applied contributions for Landscape Ecology, advancing substantially our ability to predict and mitigate the effects of habitat loss and fragmentation on biodiversity. (AU)

Scientific publications
(References retrieved automatically from Web of Science and SciELO through information on FAPESP grants and their corresponding numbers as mentioned in the publications by the authors)
PREVEDELLO, JAYME A.; GOTELLI, NICHOLAS J.; METZGER, JEAN PAUL. A stochastic model for landscape patterns of biodiversity. ECOLOGICAL MONOGRAPHS, v. 86, n. 4, p. 462-479, NOV 2016. Web of Science Citations: 4.

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