Wildlife Research Wildlife Research Society
Ecology, management and conservation in natural and modified habitats

Responses of Mammals to Rainforest Fragmentation in Tropical Queensland: a Review and Synthesis

William F. Laurance

Wildlife Research 24(5) 603 - 612
Published: 1997


Research during the past decade in the wet tropics region of Queensland has yielded important insights into the responses of rainforest mammals to habitat fragmentation. These findings are synthesised by assessing key processes in fragmented landscapes, such as nonrandom deforestation patterns, edge effects, dramatic shifts in predator assemblages, and the kinetics of local extinction. Studies aimed at identifying ecological traits that affect the vulnerability of mammal populations in fragmented forests are also reviewed. Collectively, these investigations suggest that the composition and dynamics of fragment biotas are strongly influenced by edge effects and by the matrix of modified habitats surrounding fragments. Some implications of these findings for the management of fragmented landscapes are considered.


© CSIRO 1997

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