The next time you go for a hike, take a moment to appreciate the seemingly ordinary life all around you. A house fly, humble yarrow weed and other “generalist” plants and pollinators play a crucial role in maintaining biodiversity and might also serve as buffers against some effects of climate change, according to CU Boulder research.
“Species that are common are also in decline and could go extinct, and that could have really big repercussions for maintaining biodiversity,” said Julian Resasco, assistant professor of ecology and lead author on the study.
Published in Ecology, these findings provide valuable insights for prioritizing the conservation of species that contribute to the strength of ecological communities, prevent local extinctions and help them weather increasing phenological mismatch.
Photo: A bumblebee (Bombus sp.) visiting the flowers of Rocky Mountain goldenrod (Solidago multiradiata). Photo by Julian Resasco.
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