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Research at St Andrews

The geography of biodiversity change in marine and terrestrial assemblages

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

Author(s)

Shane A. Blowes, Sarah R. Supp, Laura H. Antao, Amanda Bates, Helge Bruelheide, Jonathan M. Chase, Faye Helen Moyes, Anne Magurran, Brian McGill, Isla H. Myers-Smith, Marten Winter, Anne D. Bjorkman, Diana E. Bowler, Jarrett E. K. Byrnes, Andrew Gonzalez, Jes Hines, Forest Isbell, Holly P. Jones, Laetitia M. Navarro, Patrick L. Thompson & 3 more Mark Vellend, Conor Waldock, Maria Dornelas

School/Research organisations

Abstract

Human activities are fundamentally altering biodiversity. Projections of declines at the global scale are contrasted by highly variable trends at local scales, suggesting that biodiversity change may be spatially structured. Here, we examined spatial variation in species richness and composition change using more than 50,000 biodiversity time series from 239 studies and found clear geographic variation in biodiversity change. Rapid compositional change is prevalent, with marine biomes exceeding and terrestrial biomes trailing the overall trend. Assemblage richness is not changing on average, although locations exhibiting increasing and decreasing trends of up to about 20% per year were found in some marine studies. At local scales, widespread compositional reorganization is most often decoupled from richness change, and biodiversity change is strongest and most variable in the oceans.
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Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)339-345
Number of pages7
JournalScience
Volume366
Issue number6463
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 18 Oct 2019

    Research areas

  • Biodiversity, Geography, Anthropocene, Biodiversity change, Time series analysis, Species richness, Assemblage composition

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