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Balancing impacts of range-shifting species: invasives vs biodiversity


For many years, the conservation community has embraced the idea that improving connectivity, that is, creating corridors so species can follow their preferred climate, will benefit biodiversity, says Toni Lyn Morelli at the University of Massachusetts Amherst’s Climate Adaptation Science Centre.

But, she adds, “I also work with invasive species experts and conservationists who know that new species can be problematic. So one community is saying yes, species arrivals are good, the other one says species arrivals are bad, and so far they aren’t talking much.”

In a new perspective paper out today, with co-first author Piper Wallingford at the University of California, Irvine, Morelli and other colleagues address that disconnect. Writing in Nature Climate Change, they propose that reconciling these differing views will allow for better management of species that are shifting their ranges because of changing climates. MORE

Header image: The native northern flying squirrel has disappeared from Massachusetts as its larger competitor, the southern flying squirrel, has moved north with climate change. Credit: Massachusetts Department of Fish and Wildlife/Bill Byrne.

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