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Understanding how a disturbance interacts with biophysical factors to influence the physical characteristics of an edge will be essential for predicting edge permeability, species edge response and how edge effects might change in time and space. Understanding how traits interact with edge characteristics in a changing landscape, and how this influences movement, biotic interactions and access to resources for different species may enhance the predictive capacity of edge effects models.
While this model was designed to predict the responses of fauna to fire edges, it could also be applied to other disturbance contexts, as components of the disturbance regime can be modified to suit any edge creation process that results in a changed landscape i.
For the purposes of this paper, we discuss the components of the model and their interactions using fire as the disturbance process. Topography is therefore an important biophysical feature influencing where fire edges occur.
www.hiphopenation.com/mu-plugins/ralls/boost-mobile-hookup.php Furthermore, variations in soil moisture and nutrient levels contribute to heterogeneous patterns of vegetation, which in turn influence edge location and architecture. Fire regimes incorporate the effects of discrete fire events with the cumulative effect of multiple fires over time and are characterized by spatially variable patterns in fire type, severity, spatial extent, patchiness, frequency and seasonality Gill, Fire extent refers to the overall size of a fire and is predominately determined by biophysical properties. However, the influence of patch mosaic burning on fire edges and how these might affect animal species and communities has not yet been considered as part of this paradigm.
Fire frequency can affect the physical properties of edges e.
Unplanned fires more commonly occur in the driest months due to the seasonal growth and curing of fuel. Ease of ignition and flame transfer are also increased by high temperatures and low humidity common during summer Bradstock, However, seasonality can also be affected by prescribed burning activities which often occur in different seasons to wildfires. Architecturally different edges are predicted to have equally divergent edge effects.
Edges resulting from fire are likely to be compositionally diverse due to inherent variability in fire behavior in different landscapes and under different climatic conditions. The volume of an edge length, width, and height is expected to affect the willingness of animals to cross it.
Edge volume may alter foraging success and exposure to predation at small spatial scales, and metapopulation dynamics at large spatial scales Nams, For example, meadow voles Microtus pennsylvanicus crossed concave edges twice as often as straight or convex edges Nams, In modified systems, species that are attracted to edges are more likely to collect in convexities and disperse from concavities, while the opposite is largely true for animals that avoid edges Nams, Edge contrast refers to the differences in structure and composition between adjoining parts of the landscape i.
In flammable landscapes, edge contrast is strongly influenced by topography, climate, and fire severity. However, different vegetation types have different regenerating capacities i. However, animals themselves can also influence edge contrast. Topography can also play a role in determining edge contrast. Highly mobile organisms are more likely to survive edge creation compared to sessile species. Diet specificity and habitat associations will also influence species edge responses. In contrast, species with generalist food or habitat requirements are predicted to fare better in a newly disturbed environment due to their ability to exploit a broader range of resources.
Fire edges may also influence the thermal landscape, potentially exacerbating fire edge effects for some species. Reduced vegetation cover after fire may cause species with narrow temperature thresholds to avoid the burnt side of edges for the first few years after fire.
Understanding species thermal sensitivities and temperature thresholds will improve our ability to predict species responses to edges created by fire. Edges are often characterized by the rate at which they facilitate or impede movement of resources and organisms, processes that are strongly influenced by edge architecture. A hard edge is a boundary that individuals may find difficult to cross, whereas a soft edge will be reasonably permeable to most animals.
Edge permeability and landscape connectivity are the results of interactions between biophysical properties, components of a disturbance regime and the physical architecture of edges. The key dynamics commonly affected by edges are ecological flows, access to resources and species interactions. Changes in processes occurring at edges can result in increased or reduced access to resources for some species, thereby changing the nature of species interactions.
Edge response can be considered at the community, species or individual level.
Our model provides a conceptual understanding of edge creation in flammable landscapes and associated implications for fauna. However, few data quantifying these processes exist, providing several avenues for future research. Understanding how fires interact with biophysical properties to create edges is an important first step in future fire edge research. Edges in highly modified systems are often maintained at a relatively stable state, whereas edges in natural systems are dynamic, changing both spatially and temporally.
Fire edges need to be studied at multiple spatial and temporal scales.