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An Introduction to Primate Conservation$
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Serge A. Wich and Andrew J. Marshall

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780198703389

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: August 2016

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198703389.001.0001

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Habitat change: loss, fragmentation, and degradation

Habitat change: loss, fragmentation, and degradation

(p.111) Chapter 7 Habitat change: loss, fragmentation, and degradation
An Introduction to Primate Conservation

Mitchell Irwin

Oxford University Press

In this chapter, habitat change is broken down into three components: habitat loss, habitat fragmentation, and habitat degradation. For each, the nature and extent of the pressure is described, exactly how it threatens primates, and what is known about how primates respond. Theoretical frameworks (e.g. species–area relationships, metapopulation dynamics) that can be useful in modelling primate declines are covered; only when empirical data are used to build and test such frameworks can primate conservation biologists make specific, useful conservation recommendations. In the real world, all three components of habitat change often act synergistically, leaving us with reduced, fragmented, and degraded primate habitat—often it is hard to ascribe primates’ reactions to a particular force. More work is urgently needed, both to understand how habitat change contributes to primate declines (so that conservation practitioners can guide land-use practices and conservation interventions), and to reduce the rate of habitat change itself.

Keywords:   habitat loss, deforestation, habitat fragmentation, habitat degradation, metapopulations, spatial ecology, landscape ecology, edge effects, extinction

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