Only 40 per cent of forests are considered to have high ecological integrity, according to a new global measure, the Forest Landscape Integrity Index. This index has been created by 47 forest and conservation experts from across the world
Being highly connected to a strong social network has its benefits. Now a new study is showing the same goes for trees, thanks to their underground neighbours. This study is the first to show that the growth of adult trees is linked to their participation in fungal networks living in the forest soil.
Questions about the origin of nature have fascinated humans since the dawn of culture. One phenomenon of particular interest is the high diversity of forests in the tropics, relative to those in the temperate zone. One prominent hypothesis is that the greater stability of tropical forests allows greater prevalence of pests, each of which then can exert greater damage on its favored host tree than in the temperate zone, particularly when the tree species concerned becomes common.
The cultivation of vanilla in Madagascar provides a good income for small-holder farmers, but without trees and bushes the plantations can lack biodiversity. Agricultural ecologists have investigated the interaction between prey and their predators in these cultivated areas.
In the face of the Covid-19 pandemic and the mounting threat of climate change, forests and trees are vital for the rural poor in countries around the world. However, the poor are rarely able to capture the bulk of benefits from forests. A global science assessment analyses how forests can realize their potential to reduce poverty in a fair and lasting manner.
First international assessment of the protection state of mostly ‘untouched’ forests in Europe. An expansion of the protected areas by only about 1% would sufficiently protect most remaining primary forests in Europe.
Scientists have led the first assessment of naturalised, invasive and potentially invasive plant species present in Laikipia County, Kenya, which hosts the highest populations of endangered large mammals in the country.
Photosynthesis in conifer forests is one of the most important carbon sinks on a global scale. Unlike broadleaf trees, conifers are evergreen and retain their photosynthesis structure throughout the year. Especially in late winter, the combination of freezing temperatures and high light intensity exposes the needles to oxidative damage that could lead to the destruction of molecules and cell structures that contribute to photosynthesis. Researchers have discovered a previously unknown mechanism that enables spruce trees to adapt to winter.
Guam is home to “Cycas micronesica”, an arborescent cycad species that is facing threats from several invasive insect pests. The once widespread tree has been decimated from the forests on Guam and the nearby island of Rota, leading the International Union for Conservation of Nature to list the gymnosperm tree species as endangered.
Alpine regions on the Tibetan Plateau are sensitive to climate change, however, little is known about their long-term hydroclimate variability due to short instrumental records. A research team established a 537-year standard shrub-ring chronology by cross-dating living and dead Wilson juniper shrubs sampled nearby the Nam Co Lake, on the south-central Tibetan Plateau.