Monday, October 09, 2017

islands of life

Island biogeography is a very successful concept looking at how species manage in (partial) isolation from the rest of the world. It applies to islands in the sea, of course, but also to other isolated patches of habitat such as forest fragments, areas of land cut off by by roads, or sea floor areas with specific properties such as those around hot springs.

In my latest feature, I have rounded up some examples of non-literal island biogeography, and I also managed to sneak in a nod to the Cassini spacecraft, which went on its last nosedive while I was writing this piece.

Life’s islands under the sea

Current Biology Volume 27, Issue 19, pR1037–R1040, 9 October 2017

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Biodiversity on and around islands can be very different from the nearest mainland. Island biogeography models these phenomena on the basis of dispersal and extinction. (Photo: Falco Ermert/Flickr by a CC BY 2.0 licence.)

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