Paper: High conservation values of the Dorrigo Plateau

In case we needed any other reason to feel it worth protecting and rainforest habitat on the Dorrigo Plateau, my attention was recently drawn to this article:

“Patterns of rain forest plant endemismin subtropical Australia relate to stable mesic refugia and species dispersal limitations” by Lui C. Weber, Jeremy VanDerWal, Susanne Schmidt,William J. F. McDonald and Luke P. Shoo

In this paper the researchers share their finding of a high correlation between long-term stable climate refugia, such as that found on the Dorrigo Plateau, with high levels of plant endemism, meaning species found nowhere else in the world. Unfortunately the types of species driving this pattern tend to be poor dispersers (having large seeds for example) making them especially vulnerable to the rapid climate shifts associated with Anthropogenic Global Heating, This This highlights both the importance of both protection and restoration of connectivity between remnant rainforest patches for future conservation action in these areas.

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