Alternative states and positive feedbacks in restoration ecology

Suding, K.N., K.L. Gross and G.R. Houseman

Publication Date:

Increasingly, research is documenting that degraded systems are often in a persistent, resilient, alternative state (see Glossary), requiring a unique recovery pathway (Figure 1, 3 and 7). Here, we review this important conceptual development and how it is being linked to theoretical models of alternative ecosystem states. We concentrate on the restoration of herbaceous plant communities because they are the focus of much recent experimental work, although we emphasize general mechanisms that are applicable to other systems and trophic levels

Resource Type:
Peer-reviewed Article

Trends in Ecology and Evolution