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Title: Ecology and diversity of herpetofaunal communities in fragmented lowland rainforests in the Philippines
Keywords: amphibians, conservation, deforestation, habitat fragmentation, reptiles, Southeast Asia
Issue Date: 4-Mar-2009
Citation: ARVIN C. DIESMOS (2009-03-04). Ecology and diversity of herpetofaunal communities in fragmented lowland rainforests in the Philippines. ScholarBank@NUS Repository.
Abstract: I assessed the effects of deforestation and fragmentation of the lowland forest on Philippine amphibians and reptiles at two spatial scales. At the macro-ecological scale, I used species-area relationships to estimate the predicted number of species extinctions as a consequence of habitat loss across the Philippines. At the community level, I determined fragmentation effects on herpetofaunas in forest patches along spatial and disturbance gradients. The study reveals a looming extinction crisis in the Philippines with up to 55% of the herpetofauna predicted to become extinct with habitat loss to date. Reptiles are more susceptible to extirpation than amphibians, and snakes are most vulnerable to fragmentation effects. Direct developers and ovoviviparous species are extinction-prone. Extinction risk is most severe in highly deforested regions and in island ecosystems that harbor endemic species. The conservation hotspots regions of the West Visayas, Mindoro, Batanes, and Gigante have likely reached a critical threshold of deforestation. Further habitat loss in these regions will result in the extinction of over half of the herpetofauna in the medium-term future.
Appears in Collections:Ph.D Theses (Open)

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