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García-Algarra J, Pastor JM, Iriondo JM, Galeano J.2017. Ranking of critical species to preserve the functionality of mutualistic networks using the k-core decomposition. PeerJ Preprints5:e2855v1https://doi.org/10.7287/peerj.preprints.2855v1
Mutualistic communities play an important role in biodiversity preservation. They are modeled as bipartite networks and measurements of centrality and degree help to order species and their relative importance for network robustness. Identifying the most endangered ones or those more prone to trigger cascade extinctions is essential to define conservation policies. In this work, we explain how a classical graph analysis tool, the k-core decomposition, provides new ranking magnitudes that reach outstanding performance for these purposes.