Alternative stable states• Sets of unique biotic and abiotic conditions• Basins of attraction – Set of individual conditions lead to long-time behavior – Collection of all possible initial conditions of a dynamical state• ASS- perturbations push ecosystem from one basin to another
Alternative stable states• Tipping points – Phase shifts – abrupt changes in ecosystem structure and function.• Hysteresis – Multiple states persist under equal environmental conditions – Example: Tropical cloud forests
Connectivity• Ecosystems are built around interaction webs• Every species can potentially influence many others• Interactions – Biological processes – Physicochemical processes – Highly complex network
Ecological Society of Americahttp://phys.org/news/2012-10-scientists-greenbelts-wildlife-sanctuaries.html
Trophic Downgrading• Not widely appreciated, difficult to observe• Need for perturbation, to be perceived• Time scales – When noticed, too late• Space scales
Discussion• Management solution: restoration of apex consumers.• Ecological surprises – Pandemics, loss valuable sp., shifts ecosystem states, loss ES – Altered top-down regimes – Apex loss or introduction of exotics
Discussion• What about other anthropogenic threats?• Do present conservation strategies contemplate this new paradigm?
Surrogate species?Species used to represent other species or aspects of the environment to obtain a conservation objective. (Caro, 2010) Indicator Umbrella Keystone Flagship