African forest elephants are really slow breeders

In this post, Associate Editor Johan du Toit discusses new Policy Direction “Slow intrinsic growth rate in forest elephants indicates recovery from poaching will require decades” by Andrea Turkalo, Peter Wrege, and George Wittemyer, published today. Intrinsic population growth is related to body mass The rate at which a population grows (r) under ideal conditions with no resource limitation, disease, or predation, is governed by … Continue reading African forest elephants are really slow breeders

Landscape structure influences urban vegetation vertical structure

In this post Matthew Mitchell discusses his recent paper ‘Landscape structure influences urban vegetation vertical structure‘. The importance of urban vegetation Odds are that you’re reading this in a city. More than half of humanity today lives in cities, and this is expected to increase to two-thirds by 2050. Living in a city, you almost certainly rely on urban vegetation for key ecosystem services like … Continue reading Landscape structure influences urban vegetation vertical structure

Invasion Biology needs assessment of current policies and measures

In this post Associate Editor Céline Bellard discusses the recent paper ‘Managing the risk of wildlife disease introduction: pathway-level biosecurity for preventing the introduction of alien ranaviruses‘, by Pablo García-Díaz, Joshua Ross, Andrew Woolnough and Phillip Cassey. Invasive alien species are one of the major drivers of global biodiversity loss. Among the most notorious invasive species, emerging wildlife diseases like the chytrid fungi are a globally widespread threat to … Continue reading Invasion Biology needs assessment of current policies and measures

Old villages are hot-spots of farmland bird diversity

In this post Zuzanna Rosin discusses her paper ‘Villages and their old farmsteads are hot-spots of bird diversity in agricultural landscapes‘, published today. The decline of farmland biodiversity is one of the major ecological and conservation problems in Europe. To date many efforts have been made to slow down the rate of this process, however, recent studies confirm ongoing negative trends. To counteract this decline, it … Continue reading Old villages are hot-spots of farmland bird diversity

High Intensity Fires – do they reverse bush encroachment or speed up the loss of tall trees?

In this post Izak Smit discusses his recent paper ‘An examination of the efficacy of high-intensity fires for reversing woody encroachment in savannas‘. Woody densification in savannas Many studies have documented how grasslands and open savannas are being invaded by woody plants. This phenomenon is predicted to increase as atmospheric CO2 levels increase, favouring woody plants at the expense of grasses. Woody encroachment can have … Continue reading High Intensity Fires – do they reverse bush encroachment or speed up the loss of tall trees?

Evolution of plant materials for ecological restoration: insights from the applied and basic literature

In this post Erin Espeland discusses the recent paper ‘Evolution of plant materials for ecological restoration: insights from the applied and basic literature‘ by herself and co-authors Nancy Emery, Kristin Mercer, Scott Woolbright, Karin Kettenring, Paul Gepts and Julie Etterson. Native plant materials can evolve during seed collection, increase, and planting. We survey the evolutionary and agricultural literature and apply it to the problem of restoration, … Continue reading Evolution of plant materials for ecological restoration: insights from the applied and basic literature