John M. Drake and Blaine D. Griffen Experimental demonstration of accelerated extinction in source-sink metapopulations Ecology and Evolution 3
Population extinction is a fundamental ecological process which may be aggravated by the exchange of organisms between productive (source) and unproductive (sink) habitat patches. The extent to which such source-sink exchange affects extinction rates is unknown. We conducted an experiment in which metapopulation effects could be distinguished from source-sink effects in laboratory populations of Daphnia magna. Our results confirm that where environments are spatially heterogeneous, accurate assessments of extinction risk will require understanding the exchange of organisms among population sources and sinks.
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