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Unnatural selection

By carefully removing species, humans can help avert disaster in imperiled ecosystems

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3:27pm, January 25, 2011

A little human meddling may prevent the mess of extinctions that can ripple through disturbed ecosystems.

A new analysis of how perturbations propagate through a network of organisms reveals that when an ecosystem is already off-kilter, proactively removing particular species can halt the cascade of destruction that may follow. The approach, described online January 25 in Nature Communications, could help well-defined areas

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