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Review article2017Peer reviewedOpen access

A framework for understanding human-driven vegetation change

Inderjit; Catford, Jane A.; Kalisz, Susan; Simberloff, Daniel; Wardle, David A.


Despite a major research focus on human-mediated reshuffling of plant communities, no coherent framework unites the numerous types of changes in abundances and distributions of native and non-native species that are driven by human activities. Human driven vegetation change can occur through: non-native species introductions; population outbreaks or collapses; range expansions or contractions; and range shifts of both native and non-native species. Boundaries among these different types of floristic changes are not always distinct because of an overlap in the ecological, climatic, and anthropogenic processes that underpin them. We propose a new framework that connects various human-mediated causes of vegetation change, highlights the spatial scales at which drivers act and the temporal scale at which plant assemblages respond, and provides critical insights for identifying and appropriately managing these changes.

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2017, Volume: 126, number: 12, pages: 1687-1698
Publisher: WILEY

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