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Alejandra's research: landscape ecology & more!

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Scientific articles

Latest paper: Can we trust future predictions of species distributions?

Action plans for the conservation of biodiversity rely on forecasts of how species and natural systems will change in the future, and how they will respond to alternative management strategies. In an ideal world we – scientists and ecologists – would be able to provide those forecasts with great accuracy. The problem about making such predictions is that they cannot be validated without the ability to travel in time. Lacking this possibility, decision makers have to rely on current model predictions for making decisions that will have consequences on the species in the long term. But how do we know if our current predictions about the future distributions of species are accurate?

In a new study published in Global Ecology and Biogeography, we evaluated what aspects of the data used to fit models, the model settings and the species traits determine robust predictions of species distributions into the future.
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New paper: can biodiversity, carbon and agricultural development coexist in Australia’s northern savannas?

*This is a slighly edited version of the press release note on our latest paper in Conservation letters (mainly, I´ve added here some interesting maps and figures). The featured image of this post is the Crocodile Dreaming, Nabegeyo, Bruce (1997). Courtesy of Davidson Auctions © Bruce Nabegeyo or assignee.

 

There’s a lot of talk about developing Australia’s north, of doubling the agricultural output of this region and pouring billions of dollars into new infrastructure such as irrigation. But what about the natural values of this region and it’s potential for carbon storage today and into the future? Can we develop the north and still retain these other values?

In our latest paper we´ve found that agricultural development could have profound impacts on biodiversity OR a relatively light impact, it all depends on how and where it’s done. If managers and decision makers want our sweeping northern savannas to serve multiple purposes then they need to plan strategically for them.
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New article: Understanding the factors that shape community composition of aquatic invertebrate communities in arid zones

The semi-arid and arid zones of Australia – which cover 70% of the continent land mass – host a large diversity of habitats and ecological communities of high conservation importance. Among these, permanent and ephemeral wetlands are thinly dotted across the landscape, playing the key ecological roles of providing habitat, refugia and food resources to a wealth of aquatic and non-aquatic species. Arid-zone wetlands are of high spiritual, cultural and practical significance for aboriginal communities. Continue reading!

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