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A Landscape-Scale, Applied Fire Management Experiment Promotes Recovery of a Population of the Threatened Gouldian Finch, Erythrura gouldiae, in Australia’s Tropical Savannas

Overview of attention for article published in PLOS ONE, October 2015
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About this Attention Score

  • In the top 25% of all research outputs scored by Altmetric
  • High Attention Score compared to outputs of the same age (85th percentile)
  • High Attention Score compared to outputs of the same age and source (83rd percentile)

Mentioned by

blogs
1 blog
twitter
6 tweeters
facebook
1 Facebook page

Citations

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27 Dimensions

Readers on

mendeley
73 Mendeley
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Title
A Landscape-Scale, Applied Fire Management Experiment Promotes Recovery of a Population of the Threatened Gouldian Finch, Erythrura gouldiae, in Australia’s Tropical Savannas
Published in
PLOS ONE, October 2015
DOI 10.1371/journal.pone.0137997
Pubmed ID
Authors

Sarah Legge, Stephen Garnett, Kim Maute, Joanne Heathcote, Steve Murphy, John C. Z. Woinarski, Lee Astheimer

Abstract

Fire is an integral part of savanna ecology and changes in fire patterns are linked to biodiversity loss in savannas worldwide. In Australia, changed fire regimes are implicated in the contemporary declines of small mammals, riparian species, obligate-seeding plants and grass seed-eating birds. Translating this knowledge into management to recover threatened species has proved elusive. We report here on a landscape-scale experiment carried out by the Australian Wildlife Conservancy (AWC) on Mornington Wildlife Sanctuary in northwest Australia. The experiment was designed to understand the response of a key savanna bird guild to fire, and to use that information to manage fire with the aim of recovering a threatened species population. We compared condition indices among three seed-eating bird species-one endangered (Gouldian finch) and two non-threatened (long-tailed finch and double-barred finch)-from two large areas (> 2,830 km2) with initial contrasting fire regimes ('extreme': frequent, extensive, intense fire; versus 'benign': less frequent, smaller, lower intensity fires). Populations of all three species living with the extreme fire regime had condition indices that differed from their counterparts living with the benign fire regime, including higher haematocrit levels in some seasons (suggesting higher levels of activity required to find food), different seasonal haematocrit profiles, higher fat scores in the early wet season (suggesting greater food uncertainty), and then lower muscle scores later in the wet season (suggesting prolonged food deprivation). Gouldian finches also showed seasonally increasing stress hormone concentrations with the extreme fire regime. Cumulatively, these patterns indicated greater nutritional stress over many months for seed-eating birds exposed to extreme fire regimes. We tested these relationships by monitoring finch condition over the following years, as AWC implemented fire management to produce the 'benign' fire regime throughout the property. The condition indices of finch populations originally living with the extreme fire regime shifted to resemble those of their counterparts living with the benign fire regime. This research supports the hypothesis that fire regimes affect food resources for savanna seed-eating birds, with this impact mediated through a range of grass species utilised by the birds over different seasons, and that fire management can effectively moderate that impact. This work provides a rare example of applied research supporting the recovery of a population of a threatened species.

Twitter Demographics

The data shown below were collected from the profiles of 6 tweeters who shared this research output. Click here to find out more about how the information was compiled.

Mendeley readers

The data shown below were compiled from readership statistics for 73 Mendeley readers of this research output. Click here to see the associated Mendeley record.

Geographical breakdown

Country Count As %
Unknown 73 100%

Demographic breakdown

Readers by professional status Count As %
Researcher 15 21%
Student > Ph. D. Student 12 16%
Student > Bachelor 10 14%
Student > Master 10 14%
Other 7 10%
Other 8 11%
Unknown 11 15%
Readers by discipline Count As %
Environmental Science 27 37%
Agricultural and Biological Sciences 23 32%
Social Sciences 3 4%
Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology 2 3%
Nursing and Health Professions 1 1%
Other 2 3%
Unknown 15 21%

Attention Score in Context

This research output has an Altmetric Attention Score of 11. This is our high-level measure of the quality and quantity of online attention that it has received. This Attention Score, as well as the ranking and number of research outputs shown below, was calculated when the research output was last mentioned on 02 December 2019.
All research outputs
#2,376,678
of 19,465,622 outputs
Outputs from PLOS ONE
#30,957
of 173,020 outputs
Outputs of similar age
#38,257
of 263,618 outputs
Outputs of similar age from PLOS ONE
#899
of 5,504 outputs
Altmetric has tracked 19,465,622 research outputs across all sources so far. Compared to these this one has done well and is in the 87th percentile: it's in the top 25% of all research outputs ever tracked by Altmetric.
So far Altmetric has tracked 173,020 research outputs from this source. They typically receive a lot more attention than average, with a mean Attention Score of 14.0. This one has done well, scoring higher than 82% of its peers.
Older research outputs will score higher simply because they've had more time to accumulate mentions. To account for age we can compare this Altmetric Attention Score to the 263,618 tracked outputs that were published within six weeks on either side of this one in any source. This one has done well, scoring higher than 85% of its contemporaries.
We're also able to compare this research output to 5,504 others from the same source and published within six weeks on either side of this one. This one has done well, scoring higher than 83% of its contemporaries.