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Metapopulation viability of an endangered shorebird depends on dispersal and human-created habitats: piping plovers (Charadrius melodus) and prairie rivers

Overview of attention for article published in Movement Ecology, March 2016
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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 (84th percentile)

Mentioned by

1 news outlet
1 Facebook page


26 Dimensions

Readers on

37 Mendeley
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Metapopulation viability of an endangered shorebird depends on dispersal and human-created habitats: piping plovers (Charadrius melodus) and prairie rivers
Published in
Movement Ecology, March 2016
DOI 10.1186/s40462-016-0072-y
Pubmed ID

Daniel H. Catlin, Sara L. Zeigler, Mary Bomberger Brown, Lauren R. Dinan, James D. Fraser, Kelsi L. Hunt, Joel G. Jorgensen


Many species are distributed as metapopulations in dynamic landscapes, where habitats change through space and time. Individuals locate habitat through dispersal, and the relationship between a species and landscape characteristics can have profound effects on population persistence. Despite the importance of connectivity in dynamic environments, few empirical studies have examined temporal variability in dispersal or its effect on metapopulation dynamics. In response to this knowledge gap, we studied the dispersal, demography, and viability of a metapopulation of an endangered, disturbance-dependent shorebird. We examined three subpopulations of piping plovers (Charadrius melodus) on the lower Platte and Missouri rivers from 2008-2013. High flow events from an upstream dam on the Missouri River in 2010 and 2011 allowed us to assess the effect of total habitat loss and the subsequent creation of new habitat associated with a large disturbance at one 'natural' study location. The other two sites within the metapopulation, which were maintained by anthropogenic activities (e.g., mining, development, habitat restoration), were largely unaffected by this disturbance, resulting in a controlled natural experiment. High flow events were associated with increased emigration, decreased immigration, and decreased survival in the subpopulation that experienced high flows. Following the high flow event, immigration into that subpopulation increased. Dispersal rates among subpopulations were negatively correlated with distance. The metapopulation had a low probability of extinction over 100 years (0 %) under the current disturbance interval and associated dispersal and survival rates. However, persistence depended on relatively stable, human-created habitats, not the dynamic, natural habitat (47.7 % extinction probability for this subpopulation). We found that functional connectivity, as measured by the rate of dispersal among subpopulations, increased as a result of the high flow event in our study metapopulation. Plovers also increased reproductive output following this event. Although the study metapopulation had a low overall probability of extinction, metapopulation persistence depended on anthropogenically created habitats that provided a small but stable source of nesting habitat and dispersers through time. However, all subpopulations remained small, even if persistent, making them individually vulnerable to extinction through stochastic events. Given the highly dynamic nature of habitat availability in this system, maintaining several subpopulations within the metapopulation and stable sources of habitat will be critical, and this species will likely remain conservation-reliant.

Mendeley readers

The data shown below were compiled from readership statistics for 37 Mendeley readers of this research output. Click here to see the associated Mendeley record.

Geographical breakdown

Country Count As %
Germany 1 3%
Unknown 36 97%

Demographic breakdown

Readers by professional status Count As %
Student > Master 8 22%
Student > Ph. D. Student 6 16%
Professor > Associate Professor 4 11%
Student > Bachelor 4 11%
Researcher 3 8%
Other 4 11%
Unknown 8 22%
Readers by discipline Count As %
Agricultural and Biological Sciences 17 46%
Environmental Science 8 22%
Business, Management and Accounting 1 3%
Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology 1 3%
Earth and Planetary Sciences 1 3%
Other 0 0%
Unknown 9 24%

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 26 January 2017.
All research outputs
of 19,156,856 outputs
Outputs from Movement Ecology
of 258 outputs
Outputs of similar age
of 273,228 outputs
Outputs of similar age from Movement Ecology
of 1 outputs
Altmetric has tracked 19,156,856 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 258 research outputs from this source. They typically receive a lot more attention than average, with a mean Attention Score of 20.0. This one has gotten more attention than average, scoring higher than 63% 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 273,228 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 84% of its contemporaries.
We're also able to compare this research output to 1 others from the same source and published within six weeks on either side of this one. This one has scored higher than all of them