Editor Dr. Richard Zabel
Extinction risk and tradeoffs in reserve site selection for species of different body sizes
Article first published online: 15 MAR 2013
©2013 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
Volume 6, Issue 5, pages 341–349, September/October 2013
How to Cite
Kitzes, J. and Merenlender, A. (2013), Extinction risk and tradeoffs in reserve site selection for species of different body sizes. Conservation Letters, 6: 341–349. doi: 10.1111/conl.12015
- Issue published online: 8 OCT 2013
- Article first published online: 15 MAR 2013
- Accepted manuscript online: 13 FEB 2013 12:21PM EST
- Manuscript Accepted: 22 JAN 2013
- Manuscript Received: 17 SEP 2012
Designing reserve networks often requires a tradeoff between maximizing patch sizes to decrease local extinction rates and clustering patches to increase colonization rates. Here we use stochastic metapopulation models to evaluate how this tradeoff affects landscape-wide extinction risk for idealized terrestrial mammals with body sizes from 10 g to 100 kg. In simple two-patch networks, clustering patches decreases extinction risk only when inter-patch distances are within 0.5–1.25 times a species’ maximum observed dispersal distance. In an empirical landscape in which a fixed total area can be protected, this finding accurately predicts that, relative to a network that maximizes mean patch area, clustering patches most decreases extinction risk for intermediate-sized species. These results demonstrate that there is no globally optimal level of patch clustering that will best protect all species and highlight rules of thumb for reserve network design based on the interaction of species’ body size and landscape scale.