Effects of species turnover on reserve site selection in a fragmented landscape
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- Felinks, B., Pardini, R., Dixo, M. et al. Biodivers Conserv (2011) 20: 1057. doi:10.1007/s10531-011-0015-2
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Changes in species composition is an important process in many ecosystems but rarely considered in systematic reserve site selection. To test the influence of temporal variability in species composition on the establishment of a reserve network, we compared network configurations based on species data of small mammals and frogs sampled during two consecutive years in a fragmented Atlantic Forest landscape (SE Brazil). Site selection with simulated annealing was carried out with the datasets of each single year and after merging the datasets of both years. Site selection resulted in remarkably divergent network configurations. Differences are reflected in both the identity of the selected fragments and in the amount of flexibility and irreplaceability in network configuration. Networks selected when data for both years were merged did not include all sites that were irreplaceable in one of the 2 years. Results of species number estimation revealed that significant changes in the composition of the species community occurred. Hence, temporal variability of community composition should be routinely tested and considered in systematic reserve site selection in dynamic systems.