Virtual Issue: Forests and Global Change

Edited by: Jos Barlow
MARCH 2011

The world’s forests are one of our greatest natural assets, providing innumerable ecological, social and economic services. They are also under more pressure than ever before, and face the consequences of rising human populations, the expansion of economic activities, and climate change. It is therefore vital that we adopt appropriate management practices to help ensure their ecological integrity and long-term sustainability in a changing world. Finding solutions often requires novel applied research, especially as many of the human-environment interactions are fiendishly complex.

A key strategic aim of the Journal of Applied Ecology is to assist this process by publishing applied and management relevant studies on forests. To celebrate the International Year of Forests and the British Ecological Society’s Symposium on Forests and Global Change (26-28 April 2011, Cambridge, UK) we compile twenty one of the most influential papers that have examined applied forest management and global change in the last five years.

These articles provide examples of applied ecological science from all of the world’s forested continents, including humid tropical forests in Africa, South-East Asia and South America, sub-tropical dry forests in Australia, and temperate and boreal forests in Europe and North America. They address a diverse set of environmental issues, and help inform us how to maximise the biodiversity value of agroforesty and industrial tree plantations, enhance carbon sequestration and ecosystem services, develop management strategies that will ensure the sustainable harvest of timber and non-timber forest products, and manage herbivore populations to help restore forests and avoid long-term changes in forest composition. We hope these articles will be of interest to a diverse range of stakeholders interested in sustainable forest management and the conservation of biodiversity.

Autumn Leaves Image: Photograph courtesy of Junichiro Aoyama

Managing forests for biodiversity conservation

Cost-effective age structure and geographical distribution of boreal forest reserves
J. Lundström, K. Öhman, K. Perhans, M. Rönnqvist and L. Gustafsson
Fragmentation, disturbance and tree diversity conservation in tropical montane forests
L. Cayuela, D.J. Golicher, J.M.R. Benayas, M. González-Espinosa and N. Ramírez-Marcial
Multifunctional shade-tree management in tropical agroforestry landscapes – a review
T. Tscharntke, Y. Clough, S.A. Bhagwat, D. Buchori, H. Faust, D. Hertel, D. Hölscher, J. Juhrbandt, M. Kessler, I. Perfecto, C. Scherber, G. Schroth, E. Veldkamp and T.C. Wanger
Ecological patterns of plant diversity in a plantation forest managed by clearfelling
A.E. Eycott, A.R. Watkinson and P.M. Dolman
Can oil palm plantations be made more hospitable for forest butterflies and birds?
L.P. Koh
The value of primary, secondary and plantation forests for fruit-feeding butterflies in the Brazilian Amazon
J. Barlow, W.L. Overal, I.S. Araujo, T.A. Gardner and C.A. Peres
Conservation value of cacao agroforestry for amphibians and reptiles in South-East Asia: combining correlative models with follow-up field experiments
T.C. Wanger, A. Saro, D.T. Iskandar, B.W. Brook, N.S. Sodhi, Y. Clough and T. Tscharntke
Understanding the biodiversity consequences of habitat change: the value of secondary and plantation forests for neotropical dung beetles
T.A. Gardner, M.I. Hernández, J. Barlow C.A. Peres
Plant colonization in heterogeneous landscapes: an 80-year perspective on restoration of broadleaved forest vegetation
J. Brunet

Carbon sequestration and ecosystem services

How can ecologists help realise the potential of payments for carbon in tropical forest countries?
T.R. Baker, J.P.G..Jones, O.R. Rendón Thompson, R.M.R. Cuesta, D. Del Castillo, I.C. Aguilar, J. Torres and J.R. Healey
Assessing the carbon sequestration potential of managed forests: a case study from temperate Australia
S.H. Roxburgh, S.W. Wood, B.G. Mackey, G. Woldendorp and P. Gibbons
Restoration thinning accelerates structural development and carbon sequestration in an endangered Australian ecosystem
J.M. Dwyer, R. Fensham Y.M. Buckley
Proximity to rainforest enhances pollination and fruit set in orchards
K.R. Blanche, J.A. Ludwig and S.A. Cunningham

Sustainable harvesting

Conservation implications of rainforest use patterns: mature forests provide more resources but secondary forests supply more medicine
M.C. Gavin
Modelling the long-term sustainability of indigenous hunting in Manu National Park, Peru: landscape-scale management implications for Amazonia
T. Levi, G.H. Shepard Jr, J. Ohl-Schacherer, C.A. Peres and D.W. Yu
Impacts of bark and foliage harvest on Khaya senegalensis (Meliaceae) reproductive performance in Benin
O.G. Gaoue and T. Ticktin
Growth history and crown vine coverage are principal factors influencing growth and mortality rates of big-leaf mahogany Swietenia macrophylla in Brazil
J. Grogan and R. Matthew Landis

Management, herbivores and pests

The effects of changing land use and browsing on aspen abundance and regeneration: a 50-year perspective from Sweden
L. Edenius, G. Ericsson, G. Kempe, R. Bergström and K. Danell
Management response to one insect pest may increase vulnerability to another
M.D. Klingenberg, B. Staffan Lindgren, M.P. Gillingham and B.H. Aukema
What controls woodland regeneration after elephants have killed the big trees?
S.R. Moe, L.P. Rutina, H. Hytteborn and J.T. Du Toit
Density-related effects of deer browsing on the regeneration dynamics of boreal forests
J.-P.Tremblay, J. Huot and F. Potvin

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