Species–area relationship - Wikipedia
INTRODUCTION. Macroecology can be defined as the study of ecological quently as the species-area curve (Arrhenius, ; Gleason,. ; Cain, . The species–area relationship is not only one of ecology's few laws (Schoener, The first one is the difficulty of defining habitat types for each taxonomic Equation 1 is analogous to the one proposed by Arrhenius (). The species–area relationship (SAR) describes theincrease in species numbers with increasing area and is often referred to as one of ecology's few genuine.
In this context, species traits that can be related to each theory seem promising. Here we analyzed the SARs of butterfly and moth assemblages on islands differing in size and isolation.
Species-Area Relationships Are Controlled by Species Traits
We tested whether species traits modify the SAR and the response to isolation. We concluded that considering species traits by analyzing SARs yields considerable potential for unifying island biogeography theory and niche theory, and that the systematic and predictable effects observed when considering traits can help to guide conservation and management actions.
Classical island biogeography theory predicts that species richness will increase with island area and decrease with isolation . It was developed on true islands, but has frequently been applied to a wide spectrum of island-like systems .
Despite its broad application, one of the objections raised includes the fact that classical island biogeography theory ignores functional differences among species and thus considers all species as ecologically equivalent, while relying on a dynamic equilibrium of colonization and extinction processes only .
In contrast, niche theory focuses on the importance of environmental heterogeneity and the resultant niche partitioning as major drivers of species-richness patterns . It seems most likely that aspects covered by both theories act in combination to explain diversity patterns, suggesting the need for an integrated approach for a better understanding of SARs .
There have been recent calls for such an integrative approach to include both deterministic and random components in order to enhance its predictive ability .
Classical island biogeography theory usually does not consider differences among species, but the relevant processes of colonization, persistence, and extinction are a combination of both stochastic and deterministic factors . It is likely that the pure SAR may constitute a random aspect of an integrative approach, while allowing for differences among SARs according to species traits may constitute the deterministic part.
These traits in turn may be related to the processes of persistence, colonization, and extinction, in addition to niche theory. They emphasized on the importance of understanding interactions among SAR parameters and modifying variables species traits and area in our case within a hierarchical modeling approach to make robust predictions. Extinction risks can be related to species traits such as trophic rank, reproductive capacity, and mobility .
The length of the flight period has often been used as a proxy for the reproductive potential in studies of insects and a longer adult activity is related to a larger number of offspring . A large number of offspring may increase the survival probability of populations in small areas, since it enhances the chances of colonization, successful population establishment, and population recovery .
Population persistence can be affected by population size, range size, or other measures of rarity. Rare or range-restricted species, or species with small average population sizes, may be absent from small or isolated islands because of a reduced ability to colonize otherwise suitable areas  ; alternatively such species may suffer a high extinction risk, because of their often small local populations .
Further specialization can be assumed to increase the extinction risk. Diet and habitat generalists can utilize more resources and take advantage of ephemeral habitats .
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