Document Detail

Hydrologic variability in dryland regions: impacts on ecosystem dynamics and food security.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  23045712     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
Research on ecosystem and societal response to global environmental change typically considers the effects of shifts in mean climate conditions. There is, however, some evidence of ongoing changes also in the variance of hydrologic and climate fluctuations. A relatively high interannual variability is a distinctive feature of the hydrologic regime of dryland regions, particularly at the desert margins. Hydrologic variability has an important impact on ecosystem dynamics, food security and societal reliance on ecosystem services in water-limited environments. Here, we investigate some of the current patterns of hydrologic variability in drylands around the world and review the major effects of hydrologic fluctuations on ecosystem resilience, maintenance of biodiversity and food security. We show that random hydrologic fluctuations may enhance the resilience of dryland ecosystems by obliterating bistable deterministic behaviours and threshold-like responses to external drivers. Moreover, by increasing biodiversity and the associated ecosystem redundancy, hydrologic variability can indirectly enhance post-disturbance recovery, i.e. ecosystem resilience.
Paolo D'Odorico; Abinash Bhattachan
Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article; Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.; Review    
Journal Detail:
Title:  Philosophical transactions of the Royal Society of London. Series B, Biological sciences     Volume:  367     ISSN:  1471-2970     ISO Abbreviation:  Philos. Trans. R. Soc. Lond., B, Biol. Sci.     Publication Date:  2012 Nov 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2012-10-09     Completed Date:  2013-03-08     Revised Date:  2013-12-04    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  7503623     Medline TA:  Philos Trans R Soc Lond B Biol Sci     Country:  England    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  3145-57     Citation Subset:  IM    
Export Citation:
APA/MLA Format     Download EndNote     Download BibTex
MeSH Terms
Desert Climate*
Food Supply*
Hydrology / methods*
Models, Biological
Soil / chemistry
Water / chemistry*
Water Cycle
Reg. No./Substance:
0/Soil; 059QF0KO0R/Water

From MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine

Previous Document:  Legacies of precipitation fluctuations on primary production: theory and data synthesis.
Next Document:  Navigating challenges and opportunities of land degradation and sustainable livelihood development i...