Title of symposium:
Biodiversity loss on islands. Causes, consequences, and approaches for restoring diversity and ecosystem function

Organizer:
Haldre Rogers
Iowa State University

Co-organizers:
Anna Traveset
Mediterranean Institute for Advanced Studies

Evan M. Rehm
University of California Santa Barbara

Symposium Summary
Islands have long formed model systems on which to study a variety of basic ecological and evolutionary questions (e.g. biogeography, community assembly). Coupled with the alarming rate of biodiversity loss on islands, islands represent some of the most vulnerable ecosystems, especially in the tropics. The depauperate nature of many tropical island communities offers a unique opportunity to dissect them into their component parts to bring a better understanding of how such components contribute to ecosystem functioning. Islands are also often targeted for conservation efforts as they represent closed systems that are more manageable than larger mainland systems. In this symposium, we bring together researchers working on islands across the tropics to highlight emergent patterns associated with the loss and recovery of biodiversity and ecosystem function.

List of speakers and presentation titles:

  1. Haldre Rogers (Iowa State University) – Restoring seed dispersal to an empty forest: a case study from the island of Guam
  2. Anna Traveset (Mediterranean Institute for Advanced Studies) - How novel interactions with alien species are modifying the structure of native mutualistic networks in the Galapagos Islands
  3. Jean-Yves Meyer (Délégation à la Recherche, Government of French Polynesia) - Restoring native forests and threatened endemic plants in small Pacific Islands.
  4. Evan Rehm (UC Santa Barbara) – Slowed regeneration of native montane forests on Hawaii: ecological feedbacks and alternative stable states
  5. Susan Cordell (United State Forest Service, Institute of Pacific Islands Forestry) - Functional restoration attempts in Island forests: Why redundancy wins in the short term
  6. Julia Heinen (CMEC- Natural History Museum, Denmark) - Extinction-driven changes in frugivore communities on oceanic islands
  7. Julian Schrader (University of Göttingen) – The Small-Island Effect Revisited: Patterns and Drivers of Species Richness on Small Islands in a Tropical Archipelago
  8. Prishnee Bissessur (University of Mauritius) - When effective conservation of oceanic island plant species depends on systematic understanding of natural history: Case of Mauritius endemic Roussea simplex (Rousseaceae).