Mammal diversity in logged rain forests

Dr Konstans Wells and co-authors (Wells et al. 2007) found similar patterns in diversity and assemblage variability of small mammals in logged and unlogged tropical forests of Sabah (Malaysia). While this is good news, they could also show a profound (negative) effect of forest modification on rare species. There were five rare species in logged forests compared with 16 in unlogged forest. This decline is partly attributable to differences in habitat use between species; arboreal rats and squirrels may find changed canopy space and tree composition in logged forests less suitable thus disappearing over time.

Image

Arboreal dweller: Callosciurus prevostii (Prevost’s Squirrel)
(c) http://artshotz.com

Dr Wells is collaborating with BIOFRAG which will allow us to account for functional diversity response when computing the BIOFRAG metrics.

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