Caribbean Catastrophes

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Science  16 Nov 2001:
Vol. 294, Issue 5546, pp. 1469-1471
DOI: 10.1126/science.1066927

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The number of species on islands is generally viewed as reflecting a balance between colonization and extinction. In a Perspective, Brooks and Smith explain the diverging conclusions of two recent studies of Caribbean island populations of lizards ( Schoener et al.) and birds (Ricklefs and Bermingham). The Perspective authors propose a solution to the problem and discuss the implications for conservation of island populations.