Imperial College London


Faculty of Natural SciencesDepartment of Life Sciences (Silwood Park)

Professor of Ecology



+44 (0)20 7594 2223r.ewers




1.4Centre for Population BiologySilwood Park






BibTex format

author = {Wilkinson, CL and Yeo, DCJ and Tan, HH and Fikri, AH and Ewers, RM},
doi = {10.1002/aqc.2920},
pages = {1044--1054},
title = {The availability of freshwater fish resources is maintained across a land-use gradient in Sabah, Borneo},
url = {},
volume = {28},
year = {2018}

RIS format (EndNote, RefMan)

AB - Freshwater fish are a vital resource for local communities across the rural tropics. In Southeast Asia, biodiversityrich forests are being logged and converted to extensive oil palm monocultures. This clearly has impacts on associated freshwater ecosystems, but the impact on their biodiversity remains largely understudied and poorly understood, despite the important provisioning service that freshwater fishes provide for human wellbeing. This study quantifies the biomass stocks of freshwater fish across a landuse gradient encompassing primary forest, twicelogged forest, and oil palm plantations in Sabah, Malaysia, in an area where local communities are known to harvest freshwater fish. Stream fish were sampled using a cast net, the dominant technique used by local fishermen, in 200mlong transects in 16 streams over three sampling years (2011, 2013, and 2015). Unexpectedly, no impact from land use on total fish availability was detected. There were no significant differences in fish species richness or, most importantly, biomass per unit fishing effort across the landuse gradient. There was variation in the responses of five known food species (Tor tambra, Hampala sabana, Barbodes sealei, Barbonymus balleroides, and Gastromyzon lepidogaster), and these small differences are attributed to variation in species habitat selection that covary with landuse change. Despite evidence to suggest that freshwater fish communities are resilient to landuse change, they still face risks associated with disturbance, such as invasion by alien species; furthermore, several of the more stenotopic species were only present in primary forest catchments. Nonetheless, freshwater fish in small headwater streams appear to represent a sustainable food resource for villages established in humanmodified forests or in developed oil palm plantations.
AU - Wilkinson,CL
AU - Yeo,DCJ
AU - Tan,HH
AU - Fikri,AH
AU - Ewers,RM
DO - 10.1002/aqc.2920
EP - 1054
PY - 2018///
SN - 1052-7613
SP - 1044
TI - The availability of freshwater fish resources is maintained across a land-use gradient in Sabah, Borneo
UR -
UR -
UR -
VL - 28
ER -