A global meta-analysis of the impacts of forest fragmentation on biotic mutualisms and antagonisms

Siegel, Tovah, Magrach, Ainhoa, Laurance, William F., and Luther, David (2024) A global meta-analysis of the impacts of forest fragmentation on biotic mutualisms and antagonisms. Conservation Biology. (In Press)

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Forest fragmentation is a grave threat to biodiversity. Forests are becoming increasingly fragmented with more than 70% now < 1 km from forest edge. Although much is known about the effects of forest fragmentation on individual species, much less is understood about its effects on species interactions (i.e., mutualisms, antagonisms, etc.). In 2014, a previous meta-analysis assessed the impacts of forest fragmentation on different species interactions, across 82 studies. We pooled the previous data with data published in the last 10 years (combined total 104 studies and 168 effect sizes). We compared the new set of publications (22 studies and 32 effect sizes) with the old set to evaluate potential changes in species interactions over time given the global increase in fragmentation rates. Mutualisms were more negatively affected by forest fragmentation than antagonisms (p < 0.0001). Edge effects, fragment size, and degradation negatively affected mutualisms, but not antagonisms, a different finding from the original meta-analysis. Parasitic interactions increased as fragment size decreased (p < 0.0001)—an intriguing result at variance with earlier studies. New publications showed a more negative mean effect size of forest fragmentation on mutualisms than old publications. Although research is still limited for some interactions, we identified an important scientific trend: current research tends to focus on antagonisms. We concluded that forest fragmentation disrupts important species interactions and that this disruption has increased over time.

Item ID: 82143
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1523-1739
Keywords: antagonista, antagonistic, forest fragment, fragmento de bosque, interacciones entre especies, meta-analytical, metaanálisis, mutualista, mutualistic, species interactions
Copyright Information: This is an open access article under the terms of theCreative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivsLicense, which permits use and distribution in any medium, provided theoriginal work is properly cited, the use is non-commercial and no modifications or adaptations are made.© 2023 The Authors.Conservation Biologypublished by Wiley Periodicals LLC on behalf of Society for Conservation Biology.
Date Deposited: 19 Mar 2024 00:00
FoR Codes: 31 BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES > 3103 Ecology > 310308 Terrestrial ecology @ 100%
SEO Codes: 18 ENVIRONMENTAL MANAGEMENT > 1806 Terrestrial systems and management > 180601 Assessment and management of terrestrial ecosystems @ 100%
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