Conservation of tropical birds by Navjot S Sodhi; et al

By Navjot S Sodhi; et al

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These 144 species accounted for 46% of the regional pool of species, although it is important to note that most of these species are likely to be of least conservation concern, and shifting baselines means that many forest specialists may have already been lost from these heavily deforested landscapes (Gardner et al. 2009). While some species typical of forest patches are able to breed and feed within the matrix (Sekercioglu et al. 2007), it is not clear if others require the remaining fragments for at least some part of their diet or life cycle (such as roosting or nesting).

Although very poorly studied in the tropics, chemical compounds such as fertilizers and pesticides could also have negative impacts on forest birds as they drift from surrounding agricultural areas into forest edges (Murcia 1995; Weathers et al. 2001; see Chapter 1). For physical and biological edge effects, the magnitude and distance of any impact is likely to depend upon the contrast in structure and composition between the adjacent systems, extreme temperatures and high winds, as well as the presence of invasive species (Harper et al.

Time lags can also help explain why there have been no proven extinctions from the heavily deforested and highly fragmented Brazilian Atlantic forest, with an analysis based on species–area relationships suggesting that between 30% and 50% of the endemic forest species will go extinct as a result of the deforestation that has already been carried out (Brooks et al. 1999a). 1 Fluctuating asymmetry may provide evidence of longer-term consequences Given the eventual effects of fragmentation may take decades or even centuries to become apparent, some authors have attempted to look for ways of assessing stress in bird populations as a kind of early warning system that could help predict extinctions.

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