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1 December 2003 The Ecological Consequences of Socioeconomic and Land-Use Changes in Postagriculture Puerto Rico
H. RICARDO GRAU, T. MITCHELL AIDE, JESS K. ZIMMERMAN, JOHN R. THOMLINSON, EILEEN HELMER, XIOMING ZOU
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Abstract

Contrary to the general trend in the tropics, forests have recovered in Puerto Rico from less than 10% of the landscape in the late 1940s to more than 40% in the present. The recent Puerto Rican history of forest recovery provides the opportunity to study the ecological consequences of economic globalization, reflected in a shift from agriculture to manufacturing and in human migration from rural to urban areas. Forest structure rapidly recovers through secondary succession, reaching mature forest levels of local biodiversity and biomass in approximately 40 years. Despite the rapid structural recovery, the legacy of pre-abandonment land use, including widespread abundance of exotic species and broadscale floristic homogenization, is likely to persist for centuries.

H. RICARDO GRAU, T. MITCHELL AIDE, JESS K. ZIMMERMAN, JOHN R. THOMLINSON, EILEEN HELMER, and XIOMING ZOU "The Ecological Consequences of Socioeconomic and Land-Use Changes in Postagriculture Puerto Rico," BioScience 53(12), 1159-1168, (1 December 2003). https://doi.org/10.1641/0006-3568(2003)053[1159:TECOSA]2.0.CO;2
Published: 1 December 2003
JOURNAL ARTICLE
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KEYWORDS
exotic species
globalization
land-use and land-cover change
Puerto Rico
secondary succession
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