• Issue

    Journal of Applied Ecology: Volume 58, Issue 8

    1567-1801
    August 2021

COVER PICTURE AND ISSUE INFORMATION

Free Access

Cover Picture and Issue Information

  • Pages: 1567-1569
  • First Published: 03 August 2021
Description unavailable

Cover image: Small-structured agricultural landscapes like this region in Lower Austria offer potential for biodiversity friendly management. In their three-year study, Maas et al. investigated how newly established grassland strips support biodiversity depending on species-specific functional traits. (pp. 1728–1737)

Photo: © Bea Maas

EDITOR'S CHOICE

Free Access

Triennial migration and philopatry in the critically endangered soupfin shark Galeorhinus galeus

  • Pages: 1570-1582
  • First Published: 02 March 2021
Description unavailable

Identifying multiennial migratory cycles in mature female sharks can reveal hidden stock structure in the form of discrete breeding cohorts, which are spatially and temporally segregated as they cycle through different reproductive phases. Accounting for this complexity may improve the performance of spatially structured stock assessment models, particularly when fishery removals are spatially heterogeneous, as well as inform the spatiotemporal design of fishery-independent surveys. In the United States, the soupfin shark is neither actively managed nor recognized as a Highly Migratory Species; however, given the highly migratory behaviour we report, this designation should be revisited by the US Pacific Fishery Management Council. Finally, given the extensive fishery removals in Mexico, any future management must be internationally cooperative. Photo credit: T. Snodgrass.

RESEARCH ARTICLES

Open Access

Assessing the camera trap methodologies used to estimate density of unmarked populations

  • Pages: 1583-1592
  • First Published: 17 May 2021
Description unavailable

Our results show that all of the methods examined can work well, with each having particular strengths and weaknesses. Broadly, Random Encounter and Staying Time (REST) could be recommended in scenarios of high abundance, Distance Sampling with camera traps (CT-DS) in those of low abundance while Random Encounter Model (REM) can be recommended when camera trap performance is not optimal, as it can be applied with less risk of bias. This broadens the applicability of camera trapping for estimating densities of unmarked populations using information exclusively obtained from camera traps. This strengthens the case for scientifically based camera trapping as a cost-effective method to provide reference estimates for wildlife managers, including within multi-species monitoring programmes.

Free Access

Predicting bird-window collisions with weather radar

  • Pages: 1593-1601
  • First Published: 18 January 2021
Description unavailable

Our study suggests that radar can be an invaluable tool to predict bird-window collisions and help refine mitigation efforts that reduce collisions such as reducing nighttime lighting emitted from and near buildings.

Free Access

Assessing the population impacts and cost-effectiveness of a conservation translocation

  • Pages: 1602-1612
  • First Published: 11 May 2021
Description unavailable

Translocations that increase the abundance of a rare species can sometimes be viewed as a hedge against future declines that might necessitate more costly interventions. Quantifying population benefits and economic costs of management actions like translocations and comparing alternative actions can lead to cost-effective conservation that is more easily sustained.

Free Access

Amphibian species vary in their learned avoidance response to the deadly fungal pathogen Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis

  • Pages: 1613-1620
  • First Published: 26 May 2021
Description unavailable

Not all species of amphibians respond the same way to Bd exposure; some can learn to avoid Bd and the metabolites it produces, while others do not. These findings have important implications for both management practices and policy, and should be considered when developing disease models and conservation plans for amphibians.

Open Access

Weighing the unknowns: Value of Information for biological and operational uncertainty in invasion management

  • Pages: 1621-1630
  • First Published: 05 May 2021
Description unavailable

Our study demonstrates that intervention rank is determined both by biological processes in the targeted invasive populations and by intervention effectiveness. Ignoring either biological uncertainty or operational uncertainty may result in a suboptimal recommendation. Therefore, it is important to simultaneously acknowledge both sources of uncertainty during the decision-making process in invasion management. The framework presented here can accommodate diverse data sources and modelling approaches, and has wide applicability to guide invasive species management and conservation efforts.

Open Access

Auditory impairment from acoustic seal deterrents predicted for harbour porpoises in a marine protected area

  • Pages: 1631-1642
  • First Published: 08 June 2021

Description unavailable

This study highlights the potential for ‘collateral damage’ from interventions such as acoustic deterrent devices (ADDs) which are intended to reduce human–wildlife conflicts with pinnipeds but may affect the long-term health and habitat use of non-target species. This is especially true for harbour porpoises which are protected under the EU and UK Habitats Regulations. The aquaculture industry, policymakers and regulators in countries where ADDs are used should consider these findings when attempting to mitigate pinniped depredation.

Free Access

Modelling short-term energetic costs of sonar disturbance to cetaceans using high-resolution foraging data

  • Pages: 1643-1657
  • First Published: 25 May 2021
Description unavailable

Current approaches towards understanding the Population Consequences of Disturbance (PCoD) often must rely on expert opinion due to data deficiency. Our model provides an empirical method for linking behaviour to energetics, which is critical for managers to make informed decisions on actions that may affect marine mammal species. Furthermore, our model is applicable to other forms of disturbance, such as vessel traffic or seismic exploration, and our scaling approach enables risk projections for understudied species.

Free Access

Rare soil microbial taxa regulate the negative effects of land degradation drivers on soil organic matter decomposition

  • Pages: 1658-1669
  • First Published: 29 May 2021
Description unavailable

Collectively, this work shows that land degradation can have negative impacts on soil biodiversity and functions, and the rare microbial taxa indirectly regulate the impacts of land degradation on ecosystem functioning. These results indicate that the rare microbial taxa can be used as one of the ecological indicators for identifying land degradation in the semi-arid grasslands. These findings are essential to understand the future impacts of desertification and land degradation on rare microbial taxa–function relationships in global drylands.

Free Access

Leaf traits and phylogeny explain plant survival and community dynamics in response to extreme drought in a restored coastal grassland

  • Pages: 1670-1680
  • First Published: 26 May 2021
Description unavailable

Our results suggest that leaf traits and phylogenetics could serve as plant selection criteria for reducing plant mortality risk during drought, thereby improving restoration outcomes. Because some traits have a phylogenetic signal that explains drought survival, restoration practitioners could expand the use of trait-based selection for closely related species when restoring other arid- and semi-arid ecosystems.

Open Access

Restoration of plant diversity in permanent grassland by seeding: Assessing the limiting factors along land-use gradients

  • Pages: 1681-1692
  • First Published: 18 April 2021
Description unavailable

Our results highlight the potential of using diverse seed mixtures for biodiversity restoration in a wide range of permanent grasslands, especially when combined with topsoil disturbance. However, productivity both limited restoration success and affected establishment via an interaction with plant functional traits. As productivity is a major constraint in grassland restoration, we strongly recommend to first stop fertilization and reduce soil nutrient loads in highly productive grasslands. Restoration by seeding, with or without disturbance, should only be applied when productivity is reduced and the local environment should be considered to compile site-specific seed mixtures to maximize restoration success.

Free Access

Degree of intervention affects interannual and within-plot heterogeneity of seed arrival in tropical forest restoration

  • Pages: 1693-1704
  • First Published: 11 May 2021
Description unavailable

Compared to natural regeneration, active restoration interventions: (a) catalysed the recovery of seed diversity (overall Shannon diversity 17.5% and 13.4% higher in applied nucleation and plantation respectively), (b) shifted seed community composition towards remnant forest more rapidly (overall Shannon diversity 13.4% and 10.2% closer), (c) almost doubled the proportion of later-successional tree species arriving, and (d) had seed communities that differed year to year—a pattern not observed in natural regeneration. Finally, applied nucleation was the only intervention where seed arrival was as spatially heterogeneous as remnant forest, highlighting that this approach may facilitate the recovery of specific natural dispersal processes.

Open Access

Global change shifts trade-offs among ecosystem functions in woodlands restored for multifunctionality

  • Pages: 1705-1717
  • First Published: 03 May 2021
Description unavailable

With our simulation model Modelling Ecosystem Functions and Services based on Traits (ModEST), we show that restoration towards multifunctionality might be challenging not only under current conditions but also in the long-term. However, once ModEST is parameterised and validated for a specific restoration site, managers can assess which target goals can be achieved given the set of available plant species and site-specific conditions. It can also highlight which species combinations can best achieve long-term improved multifunctionality due to their trait diversity.

Free Access

Crop functional diversity drives multiple ecosystem functions during early agroforestry succession

  • Pages: 1718-1727
  • First Published: 22 May 2021
Description unavailable

Crop mixtures based on complementary plant traits can increase the multifunctionality of agroecosystems through their sustainable use. A more heterogeneous structure and projection of crop leaf area drives greater resistance to competition with weeds and produces higher crop yields in young diversified crop mixtures.

Open Access

Functional traits driving pollinator and predator responses to newly established grassland strips in agricultural landscapes

  • Pages: 1728-1737
  • First Published: 23 May 2021
Description unavailable

Over 3 years, newly established grassland strips supported larger sized and actively foraging/hunting species in the agricultural landscape. Adjacent crops likely benefit from such measures through enhanced functional diversity and related ecosystem services. However, our results also suggest that 3-year period is too short to enhance the occurrence of pollinators and epigeic predators in new grasslands. Agri-environment measures need to be complemented by the conservation of permanent habitats to effectively maintain species and functional diversity. Our findings should be acknowledged by European policy and agricultural decision makers for the design of more effective agri-environment schemes, taking into account trait-dependent species responses to land use change.

Free Access

Land use and elevation interact to shape bird functional and phylogenetic diversity and structure: Implications for designing optimal agriculture landscapes

  • Pages: 1738-1748
  • First Published: 22 May 2021
Description unavailable

Most farmers in Sri Lanka practice agriculture on small farms (c. 2 ha) and rely on services (e.g. pest control and pollination) provided by biodiversity for their livelihoods. Our results underline the important role of these heterogeneous agriculture landscapes in maintaining high functional diversity (FD) and harbouring several threatened species. While FD in agriculture was comparatively high, conservation decisions based on land use alone cannot be reliable, because land use effects were elevation dependent. Thus, priority setting exercises aimed at designing optimal agriculture landscapes should consider landscape features, in combination with elevation, to benefit both people and wildlife outside protected areas.

Open Access

Mixing tree species at different spatial scales: The effect of alpha, beta and gamma diversity on disturbance impacts under climate change

  • Pages: 1749-1763
  • First Published: 17 May 2021
Description unavailable

Enhancing tree species diversity can buffer forest ecosystems against increasing levels of perturbation. Mixing tree species between stands is at least as effective as mixing tree species within stands. Given the managerial advantages of between-stand mixtures (e.g. reduced need to control competition to maintain diversity, higher timber quality, lower logistic effort), we conclude that forest management should consider enhancing diversity at multiple spatial scales.

Free Access

The impact of logging on vertical canopy structure across a gradient of tropical forest degradation intensity in Borneo

  • Pages: 1764-1775
  • First Published: 03 May 2021
Description unavailable

Effective management and restoration of tropical forests requires detailed monitoring of the forest and its environment. We demonstrate that airborne LiDAR can effectively map the canopy architecture of the complex tropical forests of Borneo, capturing the three-dimensional impact of degradation on canopy structure at landscape scales, therefore facilitating efforts to restore and conserve these ecosystems.

Free Access

Episodic occurrence of favourable weather constrains recovery of a cold desert shrubland after fire

  • Pages: 1776-1789
  • First Published: 17 May 2021
Description unavailable

This study demonstrates the importance of episodic periods of favourable weather for long-term plant population recovery following disturbance. Management strategies that increase opportunities for seed availability to coincide with favourable weather conditions, such as retaining unburned patches or repeated seeding treatments, can improve restoration outcomes in high-priority areas.

Free Access

Salvage logging management affects species' roles in connecting plant–pollinator interaction networks across post-wildfire landscapes

  • Pages: 1790-1801
  • First Published: 22 May 2021
Description unavailable

Investigating species’ roles as connectors can provide a more complete understanding of the implications of management and provide insight into how best to conserve or restore the structure and function of species interactions across landscape mosaics. Bees may be more capable of readily responding to changes in their plant partner's spatial or temporal distributions due to salvage logging. As a result, bees may be better poised to maintain stable connections across modules compared to plants, and management actions supporting highly mobile connector species (like bees) may help offset detrimental effects of salvage logging or other disturbances. This work also indicates that minimizing the spatial extent of salvage logging relative to the proximity of other habitat types will likely aid species in forming spatial connections. Applying this framework of species as network connectors may help maintain the spatial and temporal continuity of floral resources and pollination services, even when management reduces biodiversity.