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Long-term datasets in biodiversity research and monitoring: assessing change in ecological communities through time

Magurran, Anne E.; Baillie, Stephen R.; Buckland, Stephen T.; Dick, Jan McP.; Elston, David A.; Scott, E. Marian; Smith, Rognvald I.; Somerfield, Paul J.; Watt, Allan D.. 2010 Long-term datasets in biodiversity research and monitoring: assessing change in ecological communities through time. Trends in Ecology and Evolution, 25. 574-582. 10.1016/j.tree.2010.06.016

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Abstract/Summary

The growing need for baseline data against which efforts to reduce the rate of biodiversity loss can be judged highlights the importance of long-term datasets, some of which are as old as ecology itself. We review methods of evaluating change in biodiversity at the community level using these datasets, and contrast whole-community approaches with those that combine information from different species and habitats. As all communities experience temporal turnover, one of the biggest challenges is distinguishing change that can be attributed to external factors, such as anthropogenic activities, from underlying natural change. We also discuss methodological issues, such as false alerts and modifications in design, of which users of these data sets need to be aware.

Item Type: Publication - Article
Digital Object Identifier (DOI): 10.1016/j.tree.2010.06.016
Programmes: CEH Topics & Objectives 2009 onwards > Biodiversity > BD Topic 1 - Observations, Patterns, and Predictions for Biodiversity
CEH Topics & Objectives 2009 onwards > Biodiversity > BD Topic 3 - Managing Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services in a Changing Environment
CEH Sections: Billett
Watt
ISSN: 0169-5347
NORA Subject Terms: Ecology and Environment
Date made live: 30 Sep 2010 11:21
URI: http://nora.nerc.ac.uk/id/eprint/11209

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