Definition of keystone species in English:

keystone species

nounplural noun keystone species

  • A species on which other species in an ecosystem largely depend, such that if it were removed the ecosystem would change drastically.

    ‘Well, you remove a keystone species and the entire ecosystem can collapse.’
    • ‘A keystone species in several ecosystems, the grizzly was listed in 1975 as threatened in the lower 48 states.’
    • ‘Meanwhile the keystone species of the entire ecosystem - the humble capelin - has again become the target of a sizeable fishery.’
    • ‘Whitebark pines are what silviculturists term a keystone species of upper subalpine ecosystems.’
    • ‘Crustaceans are keystone species in aquatic ecosystems and our studies should have utility in the monitoring of ecosystem health and in improving fisheries and aquaculture practices.’
    • ‘Gary Nabhan discovered ironwood's role as a keystone species in the Sonoran Desert ecosystem.’
    • ‘Gopher tortoises are considered a keystone species in longleaf habitat.’
    • ‘As evidence mounts that conserving large keystone species is necessary to maintain the food chain, another factor in their conservation has been apparent for some time.’
    • ‘Helping the cottonwood regain lost ground is going to take some visionary action by caring individuals who comprehend the importance of the cottonwood as a keystone species in the parched western scheme of things.’
    • ‘Krill is the keystone species in the Antarctic food web.’
    • ‘Hence, the conservation of a keystone species leads to the preservation of the eco-system.’
    • ‘Without a source of material from the outside, the marsh beetles - keystone species that regulate food supply to lower-level consumers - have little to work with.’
    • ‘This palm is considered a keystone species because it supplies fruits for birds and rodents all year and is intensively harvested for culinary purposes.’
    • ‘The extirpation of beaver - a keystone species - in 1900 was especially devastating to the watershed.’
    • ‘There are lot of reptiles that are keystone species.’
    • ‘These predators are keystone species - of inordinate importance to the whole community.’
    • ‘This is a keystone species that should be reintroduced to Scotland - not just because it is an attractive furry mammal but because it has an important role in recreating the wetlands of which Scotland has a shortage.’
    • ‘Detailed studies had been made by ornithologists on important keystone species like Great Pied Hornbill and Malabar Grey Hornbills in the Anamalais.’
    • ‘The Nile crocodile is the largest semi-aquatic predator and a keystone species that has been heavily exploited by hide hunters and farmers since 1957.’
    • ‘The protection of keystone species is seen as a way of ensuring the protection of the majority of other species.’