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Conservation ecology and biodiversity research

Section edited by Josef Settele

This section considers studies into the conservation of species or ecosystems alongside research into the biodiversity of plants, animals and microbes.

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  1. The castor bean tick (Ixodes ricinus) transmits infectious diseases such as Lyme borreliosis, which constitutes an important ecosystem disservice. Despite many local studies, a comprehensive understanding of the ...

    Authors: Steffen Ehrmann, Jaan Liira, Stefanie Gärtner, Karin Hansen, Jörg Brunet, Sara A. O. Cousins, Marc Deconchat, Guillaume Decocq, Pieter De Frenne, Pallieter De Smedt, Martin Diekmann, Emilie Gallet-Moron, Annette Kolb, Jonathan Lenoir, Jessica Lindgren, Tobias Naaf…

    Citation: BMC Ecology 2017 17:31

    Content type: Research Article

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  2. Long-distance migratory birds in North America have undergone precipitous declines over the past half-century. Although the trend is clear, for many migrating species underpinning the exact causes poses a chal...

    Authors: Andrew C. Huang, Christine A. Bishop, René McKibbin, Anna Drake and David J. Green

    Citation: BMC Ecology 2017 17:29

    Content type: Research Article

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  3. Species richness affects processes and functions in many ecosystems. Since management of temperate grasslands is directly affecting species composition and richness, it can indirectly govern how systems respon...

    Authors: Carsten F. Dormann, Lars von Riedmatten and Michael Scherer-Lorenzen

    Citation: BMC Ecology 2017 17:23

    Content type: Research Article

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  4. Human food subsidies can provide predictable food sources in large quantities for wildlife species worldwide. In the boreal forest of Fennoscandia, gut piles from moose (Alces alces) harvest provide a potentially...

    Authors: Gjermund Gomo, Jenny Mattisson, Bjørn Roar Hagen, Pål Fossland Moa and Tomas Willebrand

    Citation: BMC Ecology 2017 17:22

    Content type: Research article

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  5. Habitat fragmentation is considered to be a main reason for decreasing genetic diversity of plant species. However, the results of many fragmentation studies are inconsistent. This may be due to the influence ...

    Authors: Christoph Reisch, Sonja Schmidkonz, Katrin Meier, Quirin Schöpplein, Carina Meyer, Christian Hums, Christina Putz and Christoph Schmid

    Citation: BMC Ecology 2017 17:19

    Content type: Research Article

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  6. Rodents of the genus Rattus are among the most pervasive and successful invasive species, causing major vicissitudes in native ecological communities. A broad and flexible generalist diet has been suggested as ke...

    Authors: Melanie Dammhahn, Toky M. Randriamoria and Steven M. Goodman

    Citation: BMC Ecology 2017 17:16

    Content type: Research Article

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  7. Establishing populations in ecologically marginal habitats may require substantial phenotypic changes that come about through phenotypic plasticity, local adaptation, or both. West-Eberhard’s “plasticity-first...

    Authors: Daniel Johansson, Ricardo T. Pereyra, Marina Rafajlović and Kerstin Johannesson

    Citation: BMC Ecology 2017 17:14

    Content type: Research Article

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  8. Plant-parasitic nematodes (PPN) are major crop pests. On olive (Olea europaea), they significantly contribute to economic losses in the top-ten olive producing countries in the world especially in nurseries and u...

    Authors: Nadine Ali, Johannes Tavoillot, Guillaume Besnard, Bouchaib Khadari, Ewa Dmowska, Grażyna Winiszewska, Odile Fossati-Gaschignard, Mohammed Ater, Mohamed Aït Hamza, Abdelhamid El Mousadik, Aïcha El Oualkadi, Abdelmajid Moukhli, Laila Essalouh, Ahmed El Bakkali, Elodie Chapuis and Thierry Mateille

    Citation: BMC Ecology 2017 17:4

    Content type: Research article

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  9. Conifer populations appear disproportionately threatened by global change. Most examples are, however, drawn from the northern hemisphere and long-term rates of population decline are not well documented as hi...

    Authors: J. D. M. White, S. L. Jack, M. T. Hoffman, J. Puttick, D. Bonora, V. Visser and E. C. February

    Citation: BMC Ecology 2016 16:53

    Content type: Research article

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  10. Nepal provides habitat for approximately 100–125 wild Asian elephants (Elephas maximus). Although a small proportion of the world population of this species, this group is important for maintaining the genetic di...

    Authors: Raj Kumar Koirala, David Raubenheimer, Achyut Aryal, Mitra Lal Pathak and Weihong Ji

    Citation: BMC Ecology 2016 16:54

    Content type: Research article

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    The Erratum to this article has been published in BMC Ecology 2016 16:56

  11. Making forecasts about biodiversity and giving support to policy relies increasingly on large collections of data held electronically, and on substantial computational capability and capacity to analyse, model...

    Authors: Alex R. Hardisty, Finn Bacall, Niall Beard, Maria-Paula Balcázar-Vargas, Bachir Balech, Zoltán Barcza, Sarah J. Bourlat, Renato De Giovanni, Yde de Jong, Francesca De Leo, Laura Dobor, Giacinto Donvito, Donal Fellows, Antonio Fernandez Guerra, Nuno Ferreira, Yuliya Fetyukova…

    Citation: BMC Ecology 2016 16:49

    Content type: Software

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  12. The grey partridge (Perdix perdix) and the common pheasant (Phasianus colchicus) are galliform birds typical of arable lands in Central Europe and exhibit a partly dramatic negative population trend. In order to ...

    Authors: Katrin Ronnenberg, Egbert Strauß and Ursula Siebert

    Citation: BMC Ecology 2016 16:39

    Content type: Research article

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  13. The western burrowing owl (Athene cunicularia hypugaea) occurs throughout western North America in various habitats such as desert, short-grass prairie and shrub-steppe, among others, where the main threat for th...

    Authors: Gabriel Ruiz Ayma, Alina Olalla Kerstupp, Alberto Macías Duarte, Antonio Guzmán Velasco and José I. González Rojas

    Citation: BMC Ecology 2016 16:38

    Content type: Research article

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  14. Seed dressing with pesticides is widely used to protect crop seeds from pest insects and fungal diseases. While there is mounting evidence that especially neonicotinoid seed dressings detrimentally affect inse...

    Authors: Johann G. Zaller, Nina König, Alexandra Tiefenbacher, Yoko Muraoka, Pascal Querner, Andreas Ratzenböck, Michael Bonkowski and Robert Koller

    Citation: BMC Ecology 2016 16:37

    Content type: Research article

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  15. Speciality rice, in general, and aromatic rice in particular, possess enormous market potential for enhancing farm profits. However, systematic characterization of the diversity present in this natural wealth ...

    Authors: Pritesh Sundar Roy, Rashmita Samal, Gundimeda Jwala Narasimha Rao, Sasank Sekhar Chyau Patnaik, Nitiprasad Namdeorao Jambhulkar, Ashok Patnaik and Trilochan Mohapatra

    Citation: BMC Ecology 2016 16:36

    Content type: Research article

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  16. One of the central issues in microbial ecology is to understand the parameters that drive diversity. Among these parameters, size has often been considered to be the main driver in many different ecosystems. S...

    Authors: Jean-Jacques Godon, Pugazhendi Arulazhagan, Jean-Philippe Steyer and Jérôme Hamelin

    Citation: BMC Ecology 2016 16:12

    Content type: Research article

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  17. At the forefront of ecosystems adversely affected by climate change, coral reefs are sensitive to anomalously high temperatures which disassociate (bleaching) photosynthetic symbionts (Symbiodinium) from coral ho...

    Authors: Timothy D. Swain, Emily DuBois, Andrew Gomes, Valentina P. Stoyneva, Andrew J. Radosevich, Jillian Henss, Michelle E. Wagner, Justin Derbas, Hannah W. Grooms, Elizabeth M. Velazquez, Joshua Traub, Brian J. Kennedy, Arabela A. Grigorescu, Mark W. Westneat, Kevin Sanborn, Shoshana Levine…

    Citation: BMC Ecology 2016 16:10

    Content type: Research

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  18. Meta-barcoding of mixed pollen samples constitutes a suitable alternative to conventional pollen identification via light microscopy. Current approaches however have limitations in practicability due to low sa...

    Authors: Wiebke Sickel, Markus J Ankenbrand, Gudrun Grimmer, Andrea Holzschuh, Stephan Härtel, Jonathan Lanzen, Ingolf Steffan-Dewenter and Alexander Keller

    Citation: BMC Ecology 2015 15:20

    Content type: Methodology article

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  19. A remarkable range of environmental conditions is present in the Hawaiian Islands due to their gradients of elevation, rainfall and island age. Despite being well known as a location for the study of evolution...

    Authors: Alison R Sherwood, Amy L Carlile, Jessica M Neumann, J Patrick Kociolek, Jeffrey R Johansen, Rex L Lowe, Kimberly Y Conklin and Gernot G Presting

    Citation: BMC Ecology 2014 14:28

    Content type: Research article

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  20. Bromelia pinguin (Bromeliaceae) is a terrestrial bromeliad commonly found under forest stands throughout the Neotropics that has been shown to have antifungal activity in vitro. We have hypothesized that this bro...

    Authors: Caitlin I Looby and William D Eaton

    Citation: BMC Ecology 2014 14:12

    Content type: Research article

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  21. Windthrow, the uprooting of trees during storms associated with strong winds, is a well-established cause of mortality in temperate regions of the world, often with large ecological consequences. However, this...

    Authors: Samuel Linton Jack, Michael Timm Hoffman, Rick Frederick Rohde, Ian Durbach and Margaret Archibald

    Citation: BMC Ecology 2014 14:7

    Content type: Research article

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  22. Movements of animals have important consequences, at both the individual and population levels. Due to its important implications in the evolutionary dynamics of populations, dispersal is one of the most studi...

    Authors: Alexis Avril, Jérôme Letty, Yves Léonard and Dominique Pontier

    Citation: BMC Ecology 2014 14:6

    Content type: Research article

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  23. Plant biodiversity can affect trophic interactions in many ways, including direct bottom-up effects on insects, but is negatively affected by agricultural intensification. Grassland intensification promotes pl...

    Authors: Georg Everwand, Verena Rösch, Teja Tscharntke and Christoph Scherber

    Citation: BMC Ecology 2014 14:1

    Content type: Research article

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  24. Change in land use and management can impact massively on soil ecosystems. Ecosystem engineers and other functional biodiversity in soils can be influenced directly by such change and this in turn can affect k...

    Authors: David J Spurgeon, Aidan M Keith, Olaf Schmidt, Dennis R Lammertsma and Jack H Faber

    Citation: BMC Ecology 2013 13:46

    Content type: Research article

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  25. Arctic ecosystems, especially those near transition zones, are expected to be strongly impacted by climate change. Because it is positioned on the ecotone between tundra and boreal forest, the Churchill area i...

    Authors: Gergin A Blagoev, Nadya I Nikolova, Crystal N Sobel, Paul DN Hebert and Sarah J Adamowicz

    Citation: BMC Ecology 2013 13:44

    Content type: Research article

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  26. Coleoptera is the most diverse order of insects (>300,000 described species), but its richness diminishes at increasing latitudes (e.g., ca. 7400 species recorded in Canada), particularly of phytophagous and d...

    Authors: Thomas S Woodcock, Elizabeth E Boyle, Robert E Roughley, Peter G Kevan, Renee N Labbee, Andrew B T Smith, Henri Goulet, Dirk Steinke and Sarah J Adamowicz

    Citation: BMC Ecology 2013 13:40

    Content type: Research article

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  27. The relationship between species diversity and components of ecosystem stability has been extensively studied, whilst the influence of the genetic component of biodiversity remains poorly understood. Here we m...

    Authors: Sónia I Massa, Cristina M Paulino, Ester A Serrão, Carlos M Duarte and Sophie Arnaud-Haond

    Citation: BMC Ecology 2013 13:39

    Content type: Research article

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  28. Building reference libraries of DNA barcodes is relatively straightforward when specifically designed primers are available to amplify the COI-5P region from a relatively narrow taxonomic group (e.g. single cl...

    Authors: Jorge Lobo, Pedro M Costa, Marcos AL Teixeira, Maria SG Ferreira, Maria H Costa and Filipe O Costa

    Citation: BMC Ecology 2013 13:34

    Content type: Methodology article

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  29. The important greenhouse gas (GHG) methane is produced naturally in anaerobic wetland soils. By affecting the production, oxidation and transport of methane to the atmosphere, plants have a major influence upo...

    Authors: Gurbir S Bhullar, Majid Iravani, Peter J Edwards and Harry Olde Venterink

    Citation: BMC Ecology 2013 13:32

    Content type: Research article

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  30. Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd), the causative agent of chytridiomycosis, is decimating amphibians worldwide. Unsurprisingly, the majority of studies have therefore concentrated on documenting morbidity and m...

    Authors: Hamed Cheatsazan, Ana P Lugon Gavinho de Almedia, Andrew F Russell and Camille Bonneaud

    Citation: BMC Ecology 2013 13:27

    Content type: Research article

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  31. Biodiversity loss and species invasions are among the most important human-induced global changes. Moreover, these two processes are interlinked as ecosystem invasibility is considered to increase with decreas...

    Authors: Johann G Zaller, Myriam Parth, Ilona Szunyogh, Ines Semmelrock, Susanne Sochurek, Marcia Pinheiro, Thomas Frank and Thomas Drapela

    Citation: BMC Ecology 2013 13:20

    Content type: Research article

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  32. Biodiversity surveys have long depended on traditional methods of taxonomy to inform sampling protocols and to determine when a representative sample of a given species pool of interest has been obtained. Ques...

    Authors: Brandon J Laforest, Amanda K Winegardner, Omar A Zaheer, Nicholas W Jeffery, Elizabeth E Boyle and Sarah J Adamowicz

    Citation: BMC Ecology 2013 13:13

    Content type: Research article

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  33. With high quantity and quality data production and low cost, next generation sequencing has the potential to provide new opportunities for plant phylogeographic studies on single and multiple species. Here we ...

    Authors: Hannah McPherson, Marlien van der Merwe, Sven K Delaney, Mark A Edwards, Robert J Henry, Emma McIntosh, Paul D Rymer, Melita L Milner, Juelian Siow and Maurizio Rossetto

    Citation: BMC Ecology 2013 13:8

    Content type: Methodology article

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  34. The North American Trichoptera larvae are poorly known at the species level, despite their importance in the understanding of freshwater fauna and critical use in biomonitoring. This study focused on morpholog...

    Authors: David E Ruiter, Elizabeth E Boyle and Xin Zhou

    Citation: BMC Ecology 2013 13:5

    Content type: Research article

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  35. Insect diversity typically declines with increasing latitude, but previous studies have shown conflicting latitude-richness gradients for some hymenopteran parasitoids. However, historical estimates of insect ...

    Authors: Julie K Stahlhut, José Fernández-Triana, Sarah J Adamowicz, Matthias Buck, Henri Goulet, Paul DN Hebert, John T Huber, Mark T Merilo, Cory S Sheffield, Thomas Woodcock and M Alex Smith

    Citation: BMC Ecology 2013 13:2

    Content type: Research article

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  36. Characterizing biodiversity in a habitat or in targeted taxonomically or socioeconomically important groups remains a challenge. Standard DNA-based biodiversity identification tools such as DNA barcoding coupl...

    Authors: Mehrdad Hajibabaei, Jennifer L Spall, Shadi Shokralla and Steven van Konynenburg

    Citation: BMC Ecology 2012 12:28

    Content type: Methodology article

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  37. Various methods have been proposed to assign unknown specimens to known species using their DNA barcodes, while others have focused on using genetic divergence thresholds to estimate “species” diversity for a ...

    Authors: Anaïs K Renaud, Jade Savage and Sarah J Adamowicz

    Citation: BMC Ecology 2012 12:24

    Content type: Research article

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  38. Biodiversity databases serve the important role of highlighting species-level diversity from defined geographical regions. Databases that are specially designed to accommodate the types of data gathered during...

    Authors: Alison R Sherwood, Norman Wang, Amy L Carlile, Jessica M Neumann, Thomas K Wolfgruber and Gernot G Presting

    Citation: BMC Ecology 2012 12:22

    Content type: Database

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