Title

Comment on “The Extent of Forest in Dryland Biomes”

Authors

Daniel M. Griffith, Forest Ecosystems and Society, Oregon State University
Caroline E. R. Lehmann, School of GeoSciences, University of Edinburgh, Centre for African Ecology, School of Animal, Plant and Environmental Sciences, University of the Witwatersrand
Caroline A. E. Strömberg, Department of Biology and Burke Museum of Natural History and Culture, University of Washington
Catherine L. Parr, Department of Earth, Ocean and Ecological Sciences, School of Environmental Sciences, University of Liverpool, School of Animal, Plant and Environmental Sciences, University of the Witwatersrand, Department of Zoology and Entomology, University of Pretoria
R. Toby Pennington, Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh, Department of Geography, University of Exeter
Mahesh Sankaran, National Centre for Biological Sciences, Tata Institute of Fundamental Research, School of Biology, University of Leeds
Jayashree Ratnam, National Centre for Biological Sciences, Tata Institute of Fundamental Research
Christopher J. Still, Forest Ecosystems and Society, Oregon State University
Rebecca L. Powell, Department of Geography and the Environment, University of DenverFollow
Niall P. Hanan, Plant and Environmental Sciences, New Mexico State University
Jesse B. Nippert, Division of Biology, Kansas State University
Colin P. Osborne, Department of Animal and Plant Sciences, University of Sheffield, Grantham Centre for Sustainable Futures, University of Sheffield
Stephen P. Good, Department of Biological and Ecological Engineering, Oregon State University
T. Michael Anderson, Department of Biology, Wake Forest University
Ricardo M. Holdo, Odum School of Ecology, University of Georgia
Joseph W. Veldman, Department of Ecosystem Science and Management, Texas A&M University, Instituto Boliviano de Investigación Forestal
Giselda Durigan, Assis State Forest, Forestry Institute of São Paulo State
Kyle W. Tomlinson, Center for Integrative Conservation, Xishuangbanna Tropical Botanical Garden, Chinese Academy of Sciences
William A. Hoffmann, Department of Plant and Microbial Biology, North Carolina State University
Sally Archibald, Centre for African Ecology, School of Animal, Plant and Environmental Sciences, University of the Witwatersrand, Natural Resources and the Environment, Council for Scientific and Industrial Research
William J. Bond, South African Environmental Observation Network, National Research Foundation, Department of Biological Sciences, University of Cape Town

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

11-16-2016

Keywords

Forest, Ecosystem, Biotic composition, Management policies

Organizational Units

College of Natual Science and Mathematics, Geography and the Environment

Abstract

Bastin et al (Reports, 12 May 2017, p. 635) infer forest as more globally extensive than previously estimated using tree cover data. However, their forest definition does not reflect ecosystem function or biotic composition. These structural and climatic definitions inflate forest estimates across the tropics and undermine conservation goals, leading to inappropriate management policies and practices in tropical grassy ecosystems.

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