Special Issue "Promoting Biodiversity in Forest and Landscape Restoration"

A special issue of Diversity (ISSN 1424-2818). This special issue belongs to the section "Plant Diversity".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (20 May 2022) | Viewed by 11895

Special Issue Editor

Dr. Evert Thomas
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Bioversity International, Rome, Italy
Interests: forest and landscape restoration; Theobroma cacao genetic resources; Bertholletia excelsa ecology; GIS; species suitability modeling; inter- and intra-specific spatial diversity analysis; ethnobotany

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues, 

The promise of forest and landscape restoration (FLR), either through assisting natural regeneration or active planting for supporting global commitments regarding climate change mitigation, biodiversity conservation, and halting desertification, has never been greater. However, too often insufficient attention is still being given to the integration of biodiversity in (especially large-scale) restoration projects. Restoring ecosystems that become self-sustaining and able to persist under a changing climate requires the consideration of all levels of diversity, from soil–plant and plant–animal interactions, over genetic, functional, and species diversity, to landscape and ecosystem diversity. Approaches to FLR that embrace diversity are also more likely to generate an abundance of ecosystem services, and as such can lead to multiple wins. For this Special Issue we welcome submissions that showcase the importance, feasibility, and/or benefits of integrating biodiversity in FLR.

Dr. Evert Thomas
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Diversity is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1900 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • forest and landscape restoration
  • ecological restoration
  • genetic diversity
  • functional traits
  • soil–plant interactions
  • plant–animal interactions, pollination, seed dispersal

Published Papers (5 papers)

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Research

Article
One Tree at a Time: Restoring Landscape Connectivity through Silvopastoral Systems in Transformed Amazon Landscapes
Diversity 2022, 14(10), 846; https://doi.org/10.3390/d14100846 - 07 Oct 2022
Viewed by 680
Abstract
Due to the continued expansion of pastures and illicit crops, the Andes-Amazon foothills in Colombia are one of most threatened biodiversity hotspots in the country. Halting and restoring the connectivity of the landscapes transformed over the last 40 years and now dominated by [...] Read more.
Due to the continued expansion of pastures and illicit crops, the Andes-Amazon foothills in Colombia are one of most threatened biodiversity hotspots in the country. Halting and restoring the connectivity of the landscapes transformed over the last 40 years and now dominated by extensive cattle ranching practices, represents a challenge. Silvopastoral systems (SPSs) have been proposed as a strategy to help conserve the biodiversity by improving landscape connectivity. However, understanding the contributions of SPSs to biodiversity conservation still requires additional research. At the farm scale (here called farmscape), we compared different landscape fragmentation and connectivity metrics under two SPS conditions (with and without). Overall, the adoption of SPSs increased the probability of connectivity (PC) index in all cases. However, the contributions of SPSs to landscape connectivity were not linear. Greater PC increases were observed in highly degraded farmscapes (ΔPc = 284) compared to farmscapes containing patches that were better connected and had larger habitat areas (ΔPc = 6). These variables could play a fundamental role in enhancing the landscape connectivity through restoration activities that seek to improve biodiversity conservation. Even if they are relatively small and scattered, in highly degraded cattle ranching systems, SPSs could significantly improve the landscape connectivity, which in turn could improve wildlife conservation. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Promoting Biodiversity in Forest and Landscape Restoration)
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Article
Diversity and Big Tree Patterns in the Brazilian Amazon
Diversity 2022, 14(7), 503; https://doi.org/10.3390/d14070503 - 22 Jun 2022
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Abstract
The increasing availability of field data presents an opportunity to understand the fundamental ecological relationships and functions of large trees in tropical forests at regional and global scales. However, it is not always clear what the relationships or patterns of diversity and structure [...] Read more.
The increasing availability of field data presents an opportunity to understand the fundamental ecological relationships and functions of large trees in tropical forests at regional and global scales. However, it is not always clear what the relationships or patterns of diversity and structure are among sites in different biogeographic regions. We evaluated the relationship of the biomass and diameter of the largest trees with a diversity of species and compared, between the sites, the attributes of structure, diversity, and the influence of the 50 hyperdominant species in each site, aiming at the potential formation of groups by sites with characteristics and patterns of similar diversity within biogeographic regions. The average wood density together with the diversity of genera and families are the most important attributes to discriminate biogeographic regions when considering all forest information. Large trees play a fundamental role in forest ecology and seem to express regional environmental characteristics. The upper canopy of tropical forests remains one of the least studied environments in all terrestrial biomes, and is often referred to as “the last biotic frontier” or a “black box,” and large trees are also part of this mysterious frontier. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Promoting Biodiversity in Forest and Landscape Restoration)
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Article
Are Tree Seed Systems for Forest Landscape Restoration Fit for Purpose? An Analysis of Four Asian Countries
Diversity 2021, 13(11), 575; https://doi.org/10.3390/d13110575 - 10 Nov 2021
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 4421
Abstract
High-quality, suitably adapted tree seed at volume is a key component for the implementation and long-term success of forest landscape restoration (FLR). We analysed the tree seed systems in four Asian countries—the Philippines, Indonesia, Malaysia and India—which have committed to restore in total [...] Read more.
High-quality, suitably adapted tree seed at volume is a key component for the implementation and long-term success of forest landscape restoration (FLR). We analysed the tree seed systems in four Asian countries—the Philippines, Indonesia, Malaysia and India—which have committed to restore in total over 47.5 million hectares of degraded lands by 2030. We assessed the national seed systems using an established indicator framework, literature review and expert surveys and interviews. Additionally, we surveyed 61 FLR practitioners about their challenges in acquiring seed to understand how the strengths and weaknesses identified at the national level were reflected in FLR projects on the ground. Identified key constraints common to the studied countries are (i) a mismatch between the growing demand for priority native species and the limited seed supply in terms of quantity and quality, (ii) lack of effective quality control for seed of native species and (iii) lack of information about the effects of climate change on native species to guide species selection and seed sourcing and to improve the resilience of restored ecosystems. We discuss options to strengthen seed systems for native tree species both in terms of quality and volume to enable them to effectively respond to the national FLR commitments and make recommendations on promising technical solutions. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Promoting Biodiversity in Forest and Landscape Restoration)
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Article
Seeding Resilient Restoration: An Indicator System for the Analysis of Tree Seed Systems
Diversity 2021, 13(8), 367; https://doi.org/10.3390/d13080367 - 09 Aug 2021
Cited by 10 | Viewed by 3110
Abstract
Achieving multi-million-hectare commitments from countries around the world to restore degraded lands in resilient and sustainable ways requires, among other things, huge volumes of tree planting material. Seed systems encompassing all forest reproductive material (e.g., seeds, cuttings, stakes, and wildings), are key to [...] Read more.
Achieving multi-million-hectare commitments from countries around the world to restore degraded lands in resilient and sustainable ways requires, among other things, huge volumes of tree planting material. Seed systems encompassing all forest reproductive material (e.g., seeds, cuttings, stakes, and wildings), are key to ensuring that sufficient planting material with a diverse range of suitable species, adapted to local conditions and capable of persisting under a changing climate, is available for restoration projects. The ideal structure of a seed system integrates five components: seed selection and innovation, seed harvesting and production, market access, supply and demand, quality control, and an enabling environment. We propose 15 indicators to evaluate these key components and trial them by assessing national seed systems in 7 Latin American countries. We conclude that the indicators enable a straightforward assessment of the strengths and weaknesses of national seed systems, thus assisting governments to identify key areas for improvement and opportunities for horizontal learning. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Promoting Biodiversity in Forest and Landscape Restoration)
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Article
Soil Nematode Communities in Managed and Natural Temperate Forest
Diversity 2021, 13(7), 327; https://doi.org/10.3390/d13070327 - 16 Jul 2021
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1543
Abstract
Forest management and the stand age play key roles in determining the composition of soil biota, including nematodes. We analysed the effect of the interaction between stands of natural forest and stands influenced by human activity on nematode communities, necessary for realistically assessing [...] Read more.
Forest management and the stand age play key roles in determining the composition of soil biota, including nematodes. We analysed the effect of the interaction between stands of natural forest and stands influenced by human activity on nematode communities, necessary for realistically assessing the specific potentials of forest soils, plant protection, forest management, and land use management. Nematode communities were evaluated and compared in managed beech and spruce forests in three age classes (0–20, 40–60, and 100–120 years old) and an unmanaged old-growth temperate forest. A total of 51 nematode genera were found in the forests. The number of nematode genera was the highest (46) in European beech forests, dominated by Rhabditis and Filenchus. In contrast, the number of nematode genera was the lowest (37) in a Norway spruce forest, but where nematode abundance was the highest due mostly to the high abundance of bacterivorous nematodes such as Acrobeloides, Plectus, and Rhabditis. The unmanaged old-growth forest had the lowest nematode abundance and total biomass but the highest abundance of herbivorous nematodes of the order Tylenchida, especially Filenchus, Malenchus, and Paratylenchus, and a high abundance of identified genera of predators. The number of identified nematode genera, abundance, total biomass, and diversity index were the highest in young 0–20-year-old stands, and the lowest in 100–120-year-old stands. Enrichment, structure, and basal indices were influenced by both the stands and the ages of the forests. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Promoting Biodiversity in Forest and Landscape Restoration)
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