David L. Strayer

in Freshwater Mussel Ecology

Published by University of California Press

Published in print October 2008 | ISBN: 9780520255265
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780520942523 | DOI:

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This chapter reviews the impact of dispersal on the distribution and abundance of unionoids. Dispersal serves two essential functions: firstly, dispersal allows a species to move into previously unoccupied areas and thereby expand its geographic range; and secondly, dispersal connects the subpopulations within the established range of the species and contributes to the maintenance of unionoid metapopulations. Metapopulation models are used to estimate the degree to which unionoid species might be affected by human-induced reductions in dispersal rates. This is a special case of “extinction debt” in which the effects of human actions on biodiversity are not fully realized until many years after those actions took place.

Keywords: unionoid populations; population dispersal; dispersal rates; extinction debt; metapopulation models

Chapter.  4693 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Aquatic Biology

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