Island Biogeography Theory and Conservation Practice

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Science  23 Jan 1976:
Vol. 191, Issue 4224, pp. 285-286
DOI: 10.1126/science.191.4224.285


The application of island biogeography theory to conservation practice is premature. Theoretically and empirically, a major conclusion of such applications—that refuges should always consist of the largest possible single area—can be incorrect under a variety of biologically feasible conditions. The cost and irreversibility of large-scale conservation programs demand a prudent approach to the application of an insufficiently validated theory.

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