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Distributions of Forest Birds and Butterflies in the Andaman Islands, Bay of Bengal: Nested Patterns and Processes

Priya Davidar, K. Yogananad, T. Ganesh and Soubadra Devy
Ecography
Vol. 25, No. 1 (Feb., 2002), pp. 5-16
Published by: Wiley on behalf of Nordic Society Oikos
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/3683625
Page Count: 12
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Distributions of Forest Birds and Butterflies in the Andaman Islands, Bay of Bengal: Nested Patterns and Processes
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Abstract

The distributional patterns of forest birds and butterflies in the Andaman islands, an oceanic chain located off SE Asia, were tested for nestedness. Both taxa were highly nested. Nestedness could be due to colonization or extinction processes, area or distance effects or nestedness of habitats. Nestedness in forest bird distributions were strongly influenced by area and habitat related factors. Habitats were significantly nested in all three island groups, however most strongly for the North Andamans. However forest bird distributions in the North Andamans, as indicated by row order in the packed matrix, was not correlated with habitat diversity, suggesting that habitat related factors alone cannot account for these patterns. Other causal influences could be passive sampling, where common and abundant species and habitats are more likely to have a widespread distribution than rare species and habitats. The nested subset pattern seen in two unrelated taxa suggests that the Andamans are extinction dominated and that the protection of forests on large islands is critical for the conservation of its biodiversity.

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