Winners and losers of land use intensification

We have a new paper out showing which pollinators are more affected by land use intensification and which can cope with it quite well in New Zealand. There is a clear agreement that we should move beyond general species richness patterns, and understand each species specific response. Probably is not surprising that e.g., the invasive Bombus terrestris is doing great while bees in the native genus Leioproctus are struggling with land use intensification. However, most pollinator studies are still mainly based on richness and abundance metrics (Winfree et al 2011). That’s why we really wanted to see not only compositional changes, but also functional changes. At the end, identifying the traits of the winners and losers was the most interesting part of the paper.

As usually happens to me, I entered this article on the analysis phase, which means I can not tell you how cool is NZ, because I’ve never been there. However, I can tell you that the stats cover a lot of ground (may be too much and we lose a bit of focus?) and try to make a good use of functional diversity metrics (see here the code used to separate FD and richness effects) and species identity sensitivity to land use intensification.



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