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Shola habitats on sky islands: status of research on montane forests and grasslands in southern India

Robin, VV and Nandini, R (2012) Shola habitats on sky islands: status of research on montane forests and grasslands in southern India. In: CURRENT SCIENCE, 103 (12). pp. 1427-1437.

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The Shola habitat on the high elevation sky islands of the Western Ghats in southern India is a unique habitat. Although this habitat hosts a disproportionately high level of endemism and is threatened by anthropogenic modifications, it has received little research attention. We compiled publications of research conducted in this habitat from scientific databases and the grey literature to examine trends in publication. For a quantitative summary, all publications were classified according to the taxa of research and the broad topic of research. We identified 279 publications from 1964 and found an almost threefold increase in the number of publications and diversity of research topics studied over the last decade. Studies on flora, birds and mammals have been numerous (62% of the studies examined), but certain taxa like fish (1%) have been ignored. Most studies (65%) are descriptive, focusing on diversity, distribution trends and management suggestions, while surprisingly few have concentrated on climate change, ecological restoration and invasive species, all major threats to this landscape. We have identified some key gaps in research and conservation focus that future studies could address. We also suggest that initiatives like edited volumes and special journal sections, along with the use of creative commons licensed data-sharing portals, can be used to usher unpublished work into the public domain.

Item Type: Journal Article
Additional Information: Copyright for this article belongs to INDIAN ACAD SCIENCES, BANGALORE, INDIA
Keywords: Birds;conservation;grasslands;montane forest;sky islands
Department/Centre: Division of Biological Sciences > Centre for Ecological Sciences
Date Deposited: 25 Feb 2013 10:26
Last Modified: 03 Nov 2018 11:06
URI: http://eprints.iisc.ac.in/id/eprint/45861

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