Neutral theory of biodiversity: Controversies and a transvaluation of species conservation

Mario Arthur Favretto


The explanation of how the organization of biological communities and the search for an understanding of these patterns occurs has attracted the attention of researchers over several years. Between two existing theories, that sometimes seem to be contradictory; there are the ecological niche theory and the S. P. Hubbell’s neutral theory of biodiversity and biogeography. The niche theory uses the concept that an environment consists of different niches that requires different requirements for the occurrence of the species in a given community. Meanwhile, the neutral theory is based on stochasticity during the formation of a biological community, thus formed over time according to the stochastic immigration, speciation or extinction. However, far from being contradictory, there are situations when both theories are complementary, contributing to a better understanding of biological communities. Even though, there are situations when a possible support to the neutral theory may require a transvaluation of the reasons of species conservation avoiding to fall into a nihilistic abyss of environmental conservation due to the effects of stochasticity in the organization of biological communities.

Keywords: environment, evolution, stochasticity.

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