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corridor ecology

Jodi A Hilty, Annika TH Keeley, William Z Lidicker Jr, Adina M Merenlender

Island Press, £30.00

My eagerness to explore the contents of this text was momentarily arrested as I considered how distressing it is that we have to discuss creating corridors within our fragmented landscapes in order to help species continue to exist.

Human interference has obstructed the routes of migratory species, reduced habitats and instigated climate change, increasing intra- and interspecific competition. This second edition builds and expands on a publication from 2005 in which the authors presented their views on how essential it was to link habitats as an antidote for the reduction in biological biodiversity.

There are 10 chapters with more than 50 pages of references dealing with habitat loss, fragmentation, climate change, metapopulations, genetics, corridor design, speed of change, assessment, protection and more.

Most research has focused on terrestrial environments, but this edition touches on marine environments too. Marine connectivity is not well understood, and this additional chapter gives us an insight into the urgency of researching the plight of our planet’s seas and oceans. The effects of climate change on the distribution of marine species is an obvious issue – for example, consider the movement of larval forms in ocean currents. The changing patterns of wind currents also affects corridors in the air, which is another area for more study.

This is a definitive guide and resource for scientists and policymakers, and should be essential reading for local and regional planners.

Jean Wilson MBE CBiol FRSB

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