Summary

Connectivity has important links to a broad range of population processes, genetic variability (and evolutionary potential), species diversity, and community structure. Connectivity can be defined through structural and functional means, and functional connectivity can be further subdivided into potential and actual measurements. Connectivity can be measured between pairs of patches or across entire landscapes and many scales between. A complex diversity of metrics has been used to measure connectivity, with different metrics exhibiting different degrees of reliability, to the extent that this is known. Different metrics also differ in whether they require movement data or not, and spatially explicit landscape data or information on neighboring patches only. A key idea is that connectivity can be manipulated using habitat corridors, although such corridors are often constructed and their long-term consequences are less-often explored.

See also: Abiotic and Biotic Diversity in The Biosphere; Biodiversity; Island Biogeography; Landscape Modeling; Metapopulation Models; Neutral Theory; Spatial Subsidy.

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