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Primary forests are irreplaceable for sustaining tropical biodiversity.

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In an article published online in the journal Nature on 14th September, Luke Gibson and an international team of rain forest ecologists report a global analysis of tropical forest that shows that biodiversity cannot be retained if undisturbed primary forest is not a part of the landscape.  Secondary forests and tree plantations may provide economically valuable timber, but they do not retain biodiversity which is now being lost at an unprecedented rate.  See a summary of the story at Science Daily, or seek out the article at Nature (2011) doi:10.1038/nature10425