Agroforestry and Biodiversity Conservation in Tropical by Götz Schroth, Gustavo A. B. da Fonseca, Celia A. Harvey,

By Götz Schroth, Gustavo A. B. da Fonseca, Celia A. Harvey, Claude Gascon, Heraldo L. Vasconcelos, Anne-Marie N. Izac

Agroforestry might be the main biodiversity-friendly land use alternative. This quantity examines the opportunity of agroforestry in tropical areas for making land economically effective with out degrading the surroundings.

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1993; Malcolm 1997b). However, insect abundance is lower in the upper forest strata, presumably because the density of overstory vegetation is reduced by recurring canopy disturbances (Malcolm 1997b). Similarly, species adapted for humid, dark forest interiors, including certain beetles (Didham et al. 1998), ants (Carvalho and Vasconcelos 1999), and butterflies (Brown and Hutchings 1997), decline in abundance near edges. Birds that forage in treefall gaps, such as some arboreal insectivores, hummingbirds, and habitat generalists, often become abundant near edges (Stouffer and Bierregaard 1995a, 1995b; Dale et al.

E. Rice. 2001. Effectiveness of parks in protecting tropical biodiversity. Science 291:125–128. Cardinale, B. , M. A. Palmer, and S. L. Collins. 2002. Species diversity enhances ecosystem functioning through interspecific facilitation. Nature 415:426–429. Cincotta, R. , J. Wisnewski, and R. Engelman. 2000. Human population in the biodiversity hotspots. Nature 404:990–992. , N. Pitman, E. G. , J. Chave, J. Terborgh, R. B. Foster, P. Núñez, S. Aguilar, R. Valencia, G. Villa, H. C. Muller-Landau, E.

All else being equal, smaller forest patches contain fewer species per unit area than larger ones (Brown and Hutchings 1997; Didham 1997; Tocher et al. 1997; Warburton 1997). Smaller patches also contain more edge relative to area than larger patches. Abrupt forest edges also affect most ecological variables and indicators of forest dynamics, such as species distributions, tree mortality and recruitment, biomass loss, and community composition of trees. According to some recent estimates of the extent of edge-affected processes, only the largest forest fragments (>50,000 ha) are immune from detectable ecological effects of isolation (Curran et al.

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