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Integrating movement ecology to ecosystem service provision assessments

Grant number: 19/13802-4
Support type:Scholarships abroad - Research Internship - Post-doctor
Effective date (Start): November 29, 2019
Effective date (End): November 28, 2020
Field of knowledge:Biological Sciences - Ecology - Applied Ecology
Principal Investigator:Renata Pardini
Grantee:Andrea Larissa Boesing
Supervisor abroad: Felix-Jan Joost Antoine Bianchi
Home Institution: Instituto de Biociências (IB). Universidade de São Paulo (USP). São Paulo , SP, Brazil
Local de pesquisa : Wageningen University & Research, Netherlands  
Associated to the scholarship:17/26093-6 - Avian cross-habitat spillover into Brazilian coffee farms and implications for pest control provisioning, BP.PD


Reconciling biodiversity conservation with sustainable agricultural production is a major challenge. The cross-habitat spillover is a key process relating biodiversity in native patches to regulating ecosystem services (such as natural pest control) in-agricultural landscapes. Top-down pest suppression by naturally occurring natural enemies (often birds) is a promising alternative control method, but these often depend on forest patches for nesting and finding alternative food. While many studies have attempted to assess spillover, this is generally done in an indirect way, often by comparing species abundances inside and outside native habitats at different times of the year or even snapshots. However, species abundances can be influenced by many other population processes and therefore provide no reliable information on the movement process that underlies spillover. Currently there is a lack of understanding of the movement process of species in agricultural landscapes and how this contributes to the provision of regulating ecosystem services that are essential for sustainable crop production. Thus, using coffee plantations as study system and birds as agents of coffee borer beetle (CBB) pest control, my current work focusses on (i) the assessment of drivers of bird movement along forest-coffee interfaces, and (ii) the assessment of the relationship between avian spillover and CBB suppression in coffee farms along a forest cover gradient. Thus, the goal of this BEPE proposal is to obtain insights about which landscape configurations support cross habitat movement of birds and effective CBB suppression using different modelling procedures as tools. Specifically, this proposal aims: i) to develop a mathematical algorithm to get a better estimate of bird's space use in-coffee farms using data from automated receptors devices; 2) to develop a novel spillover measurement integrating both bird abundance and movement data; 3) to integrate the proposed spillover measurement in a kernel-function in order to interpolate the results for unsampled areas. We propose to develop this BEPE at Wageningen University and Research (WUR), one of the most recognized research institutions regarding farming systems and food production in the world.