Biodiversity & Conservation

, Volume 13, Issue 1, pp 189–206

Ecologically Differentiated Rules of Thumb for Habitat Network Design – Lessons from a Formula

  • Karin Frank

DOI: 10.1023/B:BIOC.0000004318.10051.48

Cite this article as:
Frank, K. Biodiversity and Conservation (2004) 13: 189. doi:10.1023/B:BIOC.0000004318.10051.48


The present paper addresses the following typical question of metapopulation management: “What habitat distribution is optimal for metapopulation persistence if a habitat network with a given number and configuration of patches is considered?”. By utilizing a generic metapopulation model and performing a special model analysis, rules of thumb for optimum habitat distribution and a general ‘Principle of Optimality’ are derived. The whole study is based on the application of a formula for the mean lifetime of metapopulations derived in a previous study. Finally, some general conclusions are drawn concerning the potential of using PVA techniques for deriving tools for decision support for conservation management.

Formula for the mean lifetime Habitat network design Metapopulation viability analysis Principle of optimality Rule of thumb Stochastic model 

Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 2004

Authors and Affiliations

  • Karin Frank
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Ecological ModellingUFZ-Centre for Environmental Research Leipzig-HalleLeipzigGermany

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