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Declining resilience of ecosystem functions under biodiversity loss

Oliver, Tom H.; Isaac, Nick J.B.; August, Tom A.; Woodcock, Ben A.; Roy, David B.; Bullock, James M.. 2015 Declining resilience of ecosystem functions under biodiversity loss. Nature Communications, 6, 10122. 8, pp. 10.1038/ncomms10122

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Abstract/Summary

The composition of species communities is changing rapidly through drivers such as habitat loss and climate change, with potentially serious consequences for the resilience of ecosystem functions on which humans depend. To assess such changes in resilience, we analyse trends in the frequency of species in Great Britain that provide key ecosystem functions—specifically decomposition, carbon sequestration, pollination, pest control and cultural values. For 4,424 species over four decades, there have been significant net declines among animal species that provide pollination, pest control and cultural values. Groups providing decomposition and carbon sequestration remain relatively stable, as fewer species are in decline and these are offset by large numbers of new arrivals into Great Britain. While there is general concern about degradation of a wide range of ecosystem functions, our results suggest actions should focus on particular functions for which there is evidence of substantial erosion of their resilience.

Item Type: Publication - Article
Digital Object Identifier (DOI): 10.1038/ncomms10122
CEH Sections: Pywell
ISSN: 2041-1723
Additional Information. Not used in RCUK Gateway to Research.: Open Access paper - full text available via Official URL link.
NORA Subject Terms: Ecology and Environment
Date made live: 18 Dec 2015 16:32 +0 (UTC)
URI: http://nora.nerc.ac.uk/id/eprint/512482

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