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Journal of Insect Conservation

, Volume 12, Issue 3–4, pp 197–204 | Cite as

Insect conservation on islands: setting the scene and defining the needs

  • T. R. New
Original Paper

Abstract

The putative peculiarities of island insects and the factors important in their conservation are noted. Endemism and speciation lessons from island insects have contributed significantly to wider understanding of aspects of insect diversification. The twin complexes of threats to island insects involve (1) internal processes, essentially habitat changes by human activity, and their consequences and (2) externally-imposed effects from alien invasive species, both of these operating in environments that may lack much of the buffer capability present in larger continental areas or in richer communities. Many island insects now persist only in small inaccessible remnant habitats, and protecting these is a key theme in planning insect conservation on islands. The possible effects of climate change may be severe, particularly on ‘low islands’ such as many coral cays.

Keywords

Endemism Habitat loss Invasive species Isolation Taxonomic radiation 

Notes

Acknowledgments

I very much appreciate comments from Prof. Roger Dennis and Prof. Michael Samways on a draft of this paper.

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of ZoologyLa Trobe UniversityVictoriaAustralia

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