WorldWideScience

Sample records for biodiversity conservation priorities

  1. Global Priorities for Marine Biodiversity Conservation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Selig, Elizabeth R.; Turner, Will R.; Troëng, Sebastian; Wallace, Bryan P.; Halpern, Benjamin S.; Kaschner, Kristin; Lascelles, Ben G.; Carpenter, Kent E.; Mittermeier, Russell A.

    2014-01-01

    In recent decades, many marine populations have experienced major declines in abundance, but we still know little about where management interventions may help protect the highest levels of marine biodiversity. We used modeled spatial distribution data for nearly 12,500 species to quantify global patterns of species richness and two measures of endemism. By combining these data with spatial information on cumulative human impacts, we identified priority areas where marine biodiversity is most and least impacted by human activities, both within Exclusive Economic Zones (EEZs) and Areas Beyond National Jurisdiction (ABNJ). Our analyses highlighted places that are both accepted priorities for marine conservation like the Coral Triangle, as well as less well-known locations in the southwest Indian Ocean, western Pacific Ocean, Arctic and Antarctic Oceans, and within semi-enclosed seas like the Mediterranean and Baltic Seas. Within highly impacted priority areas, climate and fishing were the biggest stressors. Although new priorities may arise as we continue to improve marine species range datasets, results from this work are an essential first step in guiding limited resources to regions where investment could best sustain marine biodiversity. PMID:24416151

  2. Global priorities for marine biodiversity conservation.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elizabeth R Selig

    Full Text Available In recent decades, many marine populations have experienced major declines in abundance, but we still know little about where management interventions may help protect the highest levels of marine biodiversity. We used modeled spatial distribution data for nearly 12,500 species to quantify global patterns of species richness and two measures of endemism. By combining these data with spatial information on cumulative human impacts, we identified priority areas where marine biodiversity is most and least impacted by human activities, both within Exclusive Economic Zones (EEZs and Areas Beyond National Jurisdiction (ABNJ. Our analyses highlighted places that are both accepted priorities for marine conservation like the Coral Triangle, as well as less well-known locations in the southwest Indian Ocean, western Pacific Ocean, Arctic and Antarctic Oceans, and within semi-enclosed seas like the Mediterranean and Baltic Seas. Within highly impacted priority areas, climate and fishing were the biggest stressors. Although new priorities may arise as we continue to improve marine species range datasets, results from this work are an essential first step in guiding limited resources to regions where investment could best sustain marine biodiversity.

  3. Biodiversity, Urban Areas, and Agriculture: Locating Priority Ecoregions for Conservation

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    Taylor Ricketts

    2003-12-01

    Full Text Available Urbanization and agriculture are two of the most important threats to biodiversity worldwide. The intensities of these land-use phenomena, however, as well as levels of biodiversity itself, differ widely among regions. Thus, there is a need to develop a quick but rigorous method of identifying where high levels of human threats and biodiversity coincide. These areas are clear priorities for biodiversity conservation. In this study, we combine distribution data for eight major plant and animal taxa (comprising over 20,000 species with remotely sensed measures of urban and agricultural land use to assess conservation priorities among 76 terrestrial ecoregions in North America. We combine the species data into overall indices of richness and endemism. We then plot each of these indices against the percent cover of urban and agricultural land in each ecoregion, resulting in four separate comparisons. For each comparison, ecoregions that fall above the 66th quantile on both axes are identified as priorities for conservation. These analyses yield four "priority sets" of 6-16 ecoregions (8-21% of the total number where high levels of biodiversity and human land use coincide. These ecoregions tend to be concentrated in the southeastern United States, California, and, to a lesser extent, the Atlantic coast, southern Texas, and the U.S. Midwest. Importantly, several ecoregions are members of more than one priority set and two ecoregions are members of all four sets. Across all 76 ecoregions, urban cover is positively correlated with both species richness and endemism. Conservation efforts in densely populated areas therefore may be equally important (if not more so as preserving remote parks in relatively pristine regions.

  4. Optimized spatial priorities for biodiversity conservation in China: a systematic conservation planning perspective.

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    Wu, Ruidong; Long, Yongcheng; Malanson, George P; Garber, Paul A; Zhang, Shuang; Li, Diqiang; Zhao, Peng; Wang, Longzhu; Duo, Hairui

    2014-01-01

    By addressing several key features overlooked in previous studies, i.e. human disturbance, integration of ecosystem- and species-level conservation features, and principles of complementarity and representativeness, we present the first national-scale systematic conservation planning for China to determine the optimized spatial priorities for biodiversity conservation. We compiled a spatial database on the distributions of ecosystem- and species-level conservation features, and modeled a human disturbance index (HDI) by aggregating information using several socioeconomic proxies. We ran Marxan with two scenarios (HDI-ignored and HDI-considered) to investigate the effects of human disturbance, and explored the geographic patterns of the optimized spatial conservation priorities. Compared to when HDI was ignored, the HDI-considered scenario resulted in (1) a marked reduction (∼9%) in the total HDI score and a slight increase (∼7%) in the total area of the portfolio of priority units, (2) a significant increase (∼43%) in the total irreplaceable area and (3) more irreplaceable units being identified in almost all environmental zones and highly-disturbed provinces. Thus the inclusion of human disturbance is essential for cost-effective priority-setting. Attention should be targeted to the areas that are characterized as moderately-disturbed, conservation. We delineated 23 primary large-scale priority areas that are significant for conserving China's biodiversity, but those isolated priority units in disturbed regions are in more urgent need of conservation actions so as to prevent immediate and severe biodiversity loss. This study presents a spatially optimized national-scale portfolio of conservation priorities--effectively representing the overall biodiversity of China while minimizing conflicts with economic development. Our results offer critical insights for current conservation and strategic land-use planning in China. The approach is transferable and easy

  5. SPECIES RICHNESS AND BIODIVERSITY CONSERVATION PRIORITIES IN BRITISH COLUMBIA

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    Patterns in the geographic distribution of seven species groups were used to identify important areas for conservation in British Columbia, Canada. Potential priority sites for conservation were determined using an integer programming algorithm that maximized the number of speci...

  6. Key Biodiversity Areas in the Philippines: Priorities for Conservation

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    R.G.R. Ambal

    2012-08-01

    Full Text Available A process for identifying Key Biodiversity Areas (KBAs for the Philippines was undertaken in two phases. The 128 terrestrial and freshwater KBAs were identified in 2006 and the 123 marine KBAs were identified in 2009. A total of 228 KBAs resulted from the integration of the terrestrial, freshwater and marine KBAs. These KBAs represent the known habitat of 855 globally important species of plants, corals, molluscs, elasmobranchs, fishes, amphibians, reptiles, birds and mammals in the country. Inclusion of these KBAs in the country’s protected area system will be a significant step towards ensuring the conservation of the full scope of the country’s natural heritage.

  7. Ecosystem services and opportunity costs shift spatial priorities for conserving forest biodiversity.

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    Matthias Schröter

    Full Text Available Inclusion of spatially explicit information on ecosystem services in conservation planning is a fairly new practice. This study analyses how the incorporation of ecosystem services as conservation features can affect conservation of forest biodiversity and how different opportunity cost constraints can change spatial priorities for conservation. We created spatially explicit cost-effective conservation scenarios for 59 forest biodiversity features and five ecosystem services in the county of Telemark (Norway with the help of the heuristic optimisation planning software, Marxan with Zones. We combined a mix of conservation instruments where forestry is either completely (non-use zone or partially restricted (partial use zone. Opportunity costs were measured in terms of foregone timber harvest, an important provisioning service in Telemark. Including a number of ecosystem services shifted priority conservation sites compared to a case where only biodiversity was considered, and increased the area of both the partial (+36.2% and the non-use zone (+3.2%. Furthermore, opportunity costs increased (+6.6%, which suggests that ecosystem services may not be a side-benefit of biodiversity conservation in this area. Opportunity cost levels were systematically changed to analyse their effect on spatial conservation priorities. Conservation of biodiversity and ecosystem services trades off against timber harvest. Currently designated nature reserves and landscape protection areas achieve a very low proportion (9.1% of the conservation targets we set in our scenario, which illustrates the high importance given to timber production at present. A trade-off curve indicated that large marginal increases in conservation target achievement are possible when the budget for conservation is increased. Forty percent of the maximum hypothetical opportunity costs would yield an average conservation target achievement of 79%.

  8. Ecosystem Services and Opportunity Costs Shift Spatial Priorities for Conserving Forest Biodiversity

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    Schröter, Matthias; Rusch, Graciela M.; Barton, David N.; Blumentrath, Stefan; Nordén, Björn

    2014-01-01

    Inclusion of spatially explicit information on ecosystem services in conservation planning is a fairly new practice. This study analyses how the incorporation of ecosystem services as conservation features can affect conservation of forest biodiversity and how different opportunity cost constraints can change spatial priorities for conservation. We created spatially explicit cost-effective conservation scenarios for 59 forest biodiversity features and five ecosystem services in the county of Telemark (Norway) with the help of the heuristic optimisation planning software, Marxan with Zones. We combined a mix of conservation instruments where forestry is either completely (non-use zone) or partially restricted (partial use zone). Opportunity costs were measured in terms of foregone timber harvest, an important provisioning service in Telemark. Including a number of ecosystem services shifted priority conservation sites compared to a case where only biodiversity was considered, and increased the area of both the partial (+36.2%) and the non-use zone (+3.2%). Furthermore, opportunity costs increased (+6.6%), which suggests that ecosystem services may not be a side-benefit of biodiversity conservation in this area. Opportunity cost levels were systematically changed to analyse their effect on spatial conservation priorities. Conservation of biodiversity and ecosystem services trades off against timber harvest. Currently designated nature reserves and landscape protection areas achieve a very low proportion (9.1%) of the conservation targets we set in our scenario, which illustrates the high importance given to timber production at present. A trade-off curve indicated that large marginal increases in conservation target achievement are possible when the budget for conservation is increased. Forty percent of the maximum hypothetical opportunity costs would yield an average conservation target achievement of 79%. PMID:25393951

  9. [Identification of marine and coastal biodiversity conservation priorities in Costa Rica].

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    Alvarado, Juan José; Herrera, Bernal; Corrales, Lenin; Asch, Jenny; Paaby, Pía

    2011-06-01

    Costa Rica is recognized as one of the most diverse countries in species and ecosystems, in their terrestrial realm as well as in the marine. Besides this relevance, the country presents a delay on conservation and management of marine and coastal biodiversity, with respect to terrestrial. For 2006, the marine protected surface was 5,208.8 km2, with 331.5 km of coastline, in 20 protected areas. The country has made progress on the conservation priority sites identification for terrestrial and freshwater biodiversity, with few efforts on marine planning. This research presents the analysis and results of the gap identification process, for marine and coastal biodiversity conservation in the protected areas system of Costa Rica. The analysis was built with the spatial information available on the presence and distribution of coastal and marine biodiversity, the establishment of the conservation goals and a threat analysis over the ecological integrity of this biodiversity. The selection of high-priority sites was carried out using spatial optimization techniques and the superposition over the current shape of marine protected areas, in order to identify representation gaps. A total of 19,076 km2 of conservation gaps were indentified, with 1,323 km2 in the Caribbean and 17,753 km2 in the Pacific. Recommendations are aimed at planning and strengthening the marine protected areas system, using the gaps identified as a framework. It is expected that the results of this study would be the scientific base needed for planning and sustainable use of marine biodiversity in the country.

  10. Reconciling Mining with the Conservation of Cave Biodiversity: A Quantitative Baseline to Help Establish Conservation Priorities.

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    Jaffé, Rodolfo; Prous, Xavier; Zampaulo, Robson; Giannini, Tereza C; Imperatriz-Fonseca, Vera L; Maurity, Clóvis; Oliveira, Guilherme; Brandi, Iuri V; Siqueira, José O

    2016-01-01

    Caves pose significant challenges for mining projects, since they harbor many endemic and threatened species, and must therefore be protected. Recent discussions between academia, environmental protection agencies, and industry partners, have highlighted problems with the current Brazilian legislation for the protection of caves. While the licensing process is long, complex and cumbersome, the criteria used to assign caves into conservation relevance categories are often subjective, with relevance being mainly determined by the presence of obligate cave dwellers (troglobites) and their presumed rarity. However, the rarity of these troglobitic species is questionable, as most remain unidentified to the species level and their habitats and distribution ranges are poorly known. Using data from 844 iron caves retrieved from different speleology reports for the Carajás region (South-Eastern Amazon, Brazil), one of the world's largest deposits of high-grade iron ore, we assess the influence of different cave characteristics on four biodiversity proxies (species richness, presence of troglobites, presence of rare troglobites, and presence of resident bat populations). We then examine how the current relevance classification scheme ranks caves with different biodiversity indicators. Large caves were found to be important reservoirs of biodiversity, so they should be prioritized in conservation programs. Our results also reveal spatial autocorrelation in all the biodiversity proxies assessed, indicating that iron caves should be treated as components of a cave network immersed in the karst landscape. Finally, we show that by prioritizing the conservation of rare troglobites, the current relevance classification scheme is undermining overall cave biodiversity and leaving ecologically important caves unprotected. We argue that conservation efforts should target subterranean habitats as a whole and propose an alternative relevance ranking scheme, which could help simplify the

  11. Ten-year assessment of the 100 priority questions for global biodiversity conservation.

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    Jucker, Tommaso; Wintle, Bonnie; Shackelford, Gorm; Bocquillon, Pierre; Geffert, Jan Laurens; Kasoar, Tim; Kovacs, Eszter; Mumby, Hannah S; Orland, Chloé; Schleicher, Judith; Tew, Eleanor R; Zabala, Aiora; Amano, Tatsuya; Bell, Alexandra; Bongalov, Boris; Chambers, Josephine M; Corrigan, Colleen; Durán, América P; Duvic-Paoli, Leslie-Anne; Emilson, Caroline; da Silva, Jéssica Fonseca; Garnett, Emma E; Green, Elizabeth J; Guth, Miriam K; Hacket-Pain, Andrew; Hinsley, Amy; Igea, Javier; Kunz, Martina; Luke, Sarah H; Lynam, William; Martin, Philip A; Nunes, Matheus H; Ockendon, Nancy; Pavitt, Aly; Payne, Charlotte L R; Plutshack, Victoria; Rademacher, Tim T; Robertson, Rebecca J; Rose, David C; Serban, Anca; Simmons, Benno I; Emilson, Erik J S; Tayleur, Catherine; Wordley, Claire F R; Mukherjee, Nibedita

    2018-06-20

    In 2008, a group of conservation scientists compiled a list of 100 priority questions for the conservation of the world's biodiversity [Sutherland et al. (2009) Conservation Biology, 23, 557-567]. However, now almost a decade later, no one has yet published a study gauging how much progress has been made in addressing these 100 high-priority questions in the peer-reviewed literature. Here we take a first step toward re-examining the 100 questions and identify key knowledge gaps that still remain. Through a combination of a questionnaire and a literature review, we evaluated each of the 100 questions on the basis of two criteria: relevance and effort. We defined highly-relevant questions as those which - if answered - would have the greatest impact on global biodiversity conservation, while effort was quantified based on the number of review publications addressing a particular question, which we used as a proxy for research effort. Using this approach we identified a set of questions that, despite being perceived as highly relevant, have been the focus of relatively few review publications over the past ten years. These questions covered a broad range of topics but predominantly tackled three major themes: the conservation and management of freshwater ecosystems, the role of societal structures in shaping interactions between people and the environment, and the impacts of conservation interventions. We see these questions as important knowledge gaps that have so far received insufficient attention and may need to be prioritised in future research. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.

  12. Mapping biodiversity and setting conservation priorities for SE Queensland's rainforests using DNA barcoding.

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    Shapcott, Alison; Forster, Paul I; Guymer, Gordon P; McDonald, William J F; Faith, Daniel P; Erickson, David; Kress, W John

    2015-01-01

    Australian rainforests have been fragmented due to past climatic changes and more recently landscape change as a result of clearing for agriculture and urban spread. The subtropical rainforests of South Eastern Queensland are significantly more fragmented than the tropical World Heritage listed northern rainforests and are subject to much greater human population pressures. The Australian rainforest flora is relatively taxonomically rich at the family level, but less so at the species level. Current methods to assess biodiversity based on species numbers fail to adequately capture this richness at higher taxonomic levels. We developed a DNA barcode library for the SE Queensland rainforest flora to support a methodology for biodiversity assessment that incorporates both taxonomic diversity and phylogenetic relationships. We placed our SE Queensland phylogeny based on a three marker DNA barcode within a larger international rainforest barcode library and used this to calculate phylogenetic diversity (PD). We compared phylo- diversity measures, species composition and richness and ecosystem diversity of the SE Queensland rainforest estate to identify which bio subregions contain the greatest rainforest biodiversity, subregion relationships and their level of protection. We identified areas of highest conservation priority. Diversity was not correlated with rainforest area in SE Queensland subregions but PD was correlated with both the percent of the subregion occupied by rainforest and the diversity of regional ecosystems (RE) present. The patterns of species diversity and phylogenetic diversity suggest a strong influence of historical biogeography. Some subregions contain significantly more PD than expected by chance, consistent with the concept of refugia, while others were significantly phylogenetically clustered, consistent with recent range expansions.

  13. Mapping Biodiversity and Setting Conservation Priorities for SE Queensland’s Rainforests Using DNA Barcoding

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shapcott, Alison; Forster, Paul I.; Guymer, Gordon P.; McDonald, William J. F.; Faith, Daniel P.; Erickson, David; Kress, W. John

    2015-01-01

    Australian rainforests have been fragmented due to past climatic changes and more recently landscape change as a result of clearing for agriculture and urban spread. The subtropical rainforests of South Eastern Queensland are significantly more fragmented than the tropical World Heritage listed northern rainforests and are subject to much greater human population pressures. The Australian rainforest flora is relatively taxonomically rich at the family level, but less so at the species level. Current methods to assess biodiversity based on species numbers fail to adequately capture this richness at higher taxonomic levels. We developed a DNA barcode library for the SE Queensland rainforest flora to support a methodology for biodiversity assessment that incorporates both taxonomic diversity and phylogenetic relationships. We placed our SE Queensland phylogeny based on a three marker DNA barcode within a larger international rainforest barcode library and used this to calculate phylogenetic diversity (PD). We compared phylo- diversity measures, species composition and richness and ecosystem diversity of the SE Queensland rainforest estate to identify which bio subregions contain the greatest rainforest biodiversity, subregion relationships and their level of protection. We identified areas of highest conservation priority. Diversity was not correlated with rainforest area in SE Queensland subregions but PD was correlated with both the percent of the subregion occupied by rainforest and the diversity of regional ecosystems (RE) present. The patterns of species diversity and phylogenetic diversity suggest a strong influence of historical biogeography. Some subregions contain significantly more PD than expected by chance, consistent with the concept of refugia, while others were significantly phylogenetically clustered, consistent with recent range expansions. PMID:25803607

  14. Conservation priorities in a biodiversity hotspot: analysis of narrow endemic plant species in New Caledonia.

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    Adrien S Wulff

    Full Text Available New Caledonia is a global biodiversity hotspot facing extreme environmental degradation. Given the urgent need for conservation prioritisation, we have made a first-pass quantitative assessment of the distribution of Narrow Endemic Species (NES in the flora to identify species and sites that are potentially important for conservation action. We assessed the distributional status of all angiosperm and gymnosperm species using data from taxonomic descriptions and herbarium samples. We characterised species as being NES if they occurred in 3 or fewer locations. In total, 635 of the 2930 assessed species were classed as NES, of which only 150 have been subjected to the IUCN conservation assessment. As the distributional patterns of un-assessed species from one or two locations correspond well with assessed species which have been classified as Critically Endangered or Endangered respectively, we suggest that our distributional data can be used to prioritise species for IUCN assessment. We also used the distributional data to produce a map of "Hotspots of Plant Narrow Endemism" (HPNE. Combined, we used these data to evaluate the coincidence of NES with mining activities (a major source of threat on New Caledonia and also areas of conservation protection. This is to identify species and locations in most urgent need of further conservation assessment and subsequent action. Finally, we grouped the NES based on the environments they occurred in and modelled the habitat distribution of these groups with a Maximum Entropy Species Distribution Model (MaxEnt. The NES were separable into three different groups based primarily on geological differences. The distribution of the habitat types for each group coincide partially with the HPNE described above and also indicates some areas which have high habitat suitability but few recorded NES. Some of these areas may represent under-sampled hotspots of narrow endemism and are priorities for further field work.

  15. Integration of species and ecosystem monitoring for selecting priority areas for biodiversity conservation: Case studies from the Palearctic of Russia

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    Alexey A. Romanov

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available At the start of the third millennium, new opportunities have arisen in biogeographical research, namely in the generalisation, visualisation and cross-spectrum analysis of biological and geographical information and in the compilation of biogeographical maps and innovative models for regions that differ in the availability of distribution data. These tasks include long-term monitoring of plants and animals which are in danger of extinction, geographical analysis of biodiversity distribution and development of effective wildlife conservation strategies for specific regions. The studies of the Department of Biogeography of Moscow University on geography and biodiversity conservation are based on long-term field expeditions. The examples of the Asian Subarctic Mountains, the steppes of Central Kazakhstan and the urbanised north-west of Russia are used to illustrate Russian approaches to the use of biogeographical monitoring for the identification of priority areas for biodiversity conservation. The species populations of the higher plants and vertebrates listed in the Red Books have been considered as the basic units of biodiversity.

  16. Opuntia in Mexico: identifying priority areas for conserving biodiversity in a multi-use landscape.

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    Patricia Illoldi-Rangel

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: México is one of the world's centers of species diversity (richness for Opuntia cacti. Yet, in spite of their economic and ecological importance, Opuntia species remain poorly studied and protected in México. Many of the species are sparsely but widely distributed across the landscape and are subject to a variety of human uses, so devising implementable conservation plans for them presents formidable difficulties. Multi-criteria analysis can be used to design a spatially coherent conservation area network while permitting sustainable human usage. METHODS AND FINDINGS: Species distribution models were created for 60 Opuntia species using MaxEnt. Targets of representation within conservation area networks were assigned at 100% for the geographically rarest species and 10% for the most common ones. Three different conservation plans were developed to represent the species within these networks using total area, shape, and connectivity as relevant criteria. Multi-criteria analysis and a metaheuristic adaptive tabu search algorithm were used to search for optimal solutions. The plans were built on the existing protected areas of México and prioritized additional areas for management for the persistence of Opuntia species. All plans required around one-third of México's total area to be prioritized for attention for Opuntia conservation, underscoring the implausibility of Opuntia conservation through traditional land reservation. Tabu search turned out to be both computationally tractable and easily implementable for search problems of this kind. CONCLUSIONS: Opuntia conservation in México require the management of large areas of land for multiple uses. The multi-criteria analyses identified priority areas and organized them in large contiguous blocks that can be effectively managed. A high level of connectivity was established among the prioritized areas resulting in the enhancement of possible modes of plant dispersal as well as

  17. Biodiversity hotspots and conservation priorities in the Campo-Ma'an rain forests, Cameroon

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Tchouto, M.G.P.; Yemefack, M.; Boer, de W.F.; Wilde, de J.J.F.E.; Maesen, van der L.J.G.; Cleef, A.M.

    2006-01-01

    Until recently, patterns of species richness and endemism were based on an intuitive interpretation of distribution maps with very limited numerical analyses. Such maps based solely on taxonomic collections tend to concentrate on collecting efforts more than biodiversity hotspots, since often the

  18. Research priorities for conservation of metallophyte biodiversity and their potential for restoration and site remediation.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Whiting, S.N.; Reeves, R.D.; Richards, D.; Johnson, M.S.; Cooke, J.A.; Malaisse, F.; Paton, A.; Smith, J.A.C.; Angle, J.S.; Chaney, R.L.; Ginocchio, R.; Jaffre, T.; Johns, R.; McIntyre, T.; Purvis, O.W.; Salt, D.E.; Zhao, F.J.; Baker, A.J.M.; Schat, H.

    2004-01-01

    Plants that have evolved to survive on metal-rich soils-metallophytes-have key values that must drive research of their unique properties and ultimately their conservation. The ability of metallophytes to tolerate extreme metal concentrations commends them for revegetation of mines and

  19. Setting priorities for private land conservation in fire-prone landscapes: Are fire risk reduction and biodiversity conservation competing or compatible objectives?

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    Alexandra D. Syphard

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available Although wildfire plays an important role in maintaining biodiversity in many ecosystems, fire management to protect human assets is often carried out by different agencies than those tasked for conserving biodiversity. In fact, fire risk reduction and biodiversity conservation are often viewed as competing objectives. Here we explored the role of management through private land conservation and asked whether we could identify private land acquisition strategies that fulfill the mutual objectives of biodiversity conservation and fire risk reduction, or whether the maximization of one objective comes at a detriment to the other. Using a fixed budget and number of homes slated for development, we simulated 20 years of housing growth under alternative conservation selection strategies, and then projected the mean risk of fires destroying structures and the area and configuration of important habitat types in San Diego County, California, USA. We found clear differences in both fire risk projections and biodiversity impacts based on the way conservation lands are prioritized for selection, but these differences were split between two distinct groupings. If no conservation lands were purchased, or if purchases were prioritized based on cost or likelihood of development, both the projected fire risk and biodiversity impacts were much higher than if conservation lands were purchased in areas with high fire hazard or high species richness. Thus, conserving land focused on either of the two objectives resulted in nearly equivalent mutual benefits for both. These benefits not only resulted from preventing development in sensitive areas, but they were also due to the different housing patterns and arrangements that occurred as development was displaced from those areas. Although biodiversity conflicts may still arise using other fire management strategies, this study shows that mutual objectives can be attained through land-use planning in this region

  20. Setting priorities for private land conservation in fire-prone landscapes: Are fire risk reduction and biodiversity conservation competing or compatible objectives?

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    Syphard, Alexandra D.; Butsic, Van; Bar-Massada, Avi; Keeley, Jon E.; Tracey, Jeff A.; Fisher, Robert N.

    2016-01-01

    Although wildfire plays an important role in maintaining biodiversity in many ecosystems, fire management to protect human assets is often carried out by different agencies than those tasked for conserving biodiversity. In fact, fire risk reduction and biodiversity conservation are often viewed as competing objectives. Here we explored the role of management through private land conservation and asked whether we could identify private land acquisition strategies that fulfill the mutual objectives of biodiversity conservation and fire risk reduction, or whether the maximization of one objective comes at a detriment to the other. Using a fixed budget and number of homes slated for development, we simulated 20 years of housing growth under alternative conservation selection strategies, and then projected the mean risk of fires destroying structures and the area and configuration of important habitat types in San Diego County, California, USA. We found clear differences in both fire risk projections and biodiversity impacts based on the way conservation lands are prioritized for selection, but these differences were split between two distinct groupings. If no conservation lands were purchased, or if purchases were prioritized based on cost or likelihood of development, both the projected fire risk and biodiversity impacts were much higher than if conservation lands were purchased in areas with high fire hazard or high species richness. Thus, conserving land focused on either of the two objectives resulted in nearly equivalent mutual benefits for both. These benefits not only resulted from preventing development in sensitive areas, but they were also due to the different housing patterns and arrangements that occurred as development was displaced from those areas. Although biodiversity conflicts may still arise using other fire management strategies, this study shows that mutual objectives can be attained through land-use planning in this region. These results likely

  1. Setting conservation priorities.

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    Wilson, Kerrie A; Carwardine, Josie; Possingham, Hugh P

    2009-04-01

    A generic framework for setting conservation priorities based on the principles of classic decision theory is provided. This framework encapsulates the key elements of any problem, including the objective, the constraints, and knowledge of the system. Within the context of this framework the broad array of approaches for setting conservation priorities are reviewed. While some approaches prioritize assets or locations for conservation investment, it is concluded here that prioritization is incomplete without consideration of the conservation actions required to conserve the assets at particular locations. The challenges associated with prioritizing investments through time in the face of threats (and also spatially and temporally heterogeneous costs) can be aided by proper problem definition. Using the authors' general framework for setting conservation priorities, multiple criteria can be rationally integrated and where, how, and when to invest conservation resources can be scheduled. Trade-offs are unavoidable in priority setting when there are multiple considerations, and budgets are almost always finite. The authors discuss how trade-offs, risks, uncertainty, feedbacks, and learning can be explicitly evaluated within their generic framework for setting conservation priorities. Finally, they suggest ways that current priority-setting approaches may be improved.

  2. Crowdfunding biodiversity conservation.

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    Gallo-Cajiao, E; Archibald, C; Friedman, R; Steven, R; Fuller, R A; Game, E T; Morrison, T H; Ritchie, E G

    2018-05-26

    Raising funds is critical for conserving biodiversity and hence so too is scrutinizing emerging financial mechanisms that might help achieve this goal. In this context, anecdotal evidence indicates crowdfunding is being used to support a variety of activities needed for biodiversity conservation, yet its magnitude and allocation remain largely unknown. We conducted a global analysis to help address this knowledge gap, based on empirical data from conservation-focused projects extracted from crowdfunding platforms. For each project, we determined the funds raised, date, country of implementation, proponent characteristics, activity type, biodiversity realm, and target taxa. We identified 72 relevant platforms and 577 conservation-focused projects that have raised US$4 790 634 since 2009. Whilst proponents were based in 38 countries, projects were delivered across 80 countries, indicating a potential mechanism of resource mobilization. Proponents were from non-governmental organizations (35%), universities (30%), or were freelancers (26%). Most projects were for research (40%), persuasion (31%), and on-ground actions (21%). Projects have focused primarily on species (57.7%) and terrestrial ecosystems (20.3%), and less on marine (8.8%) and freshwater ecosystems (3.6%). Projects have focused on 208 species, including a disproportionate number of threatened bird and mammal species. Crowdfunding for biodiversity conservation has now become a global phenomenon and presents signals for potential expansion, despite possible pitfalls. Opportunities arise from its spatial amplifying effect, steady increase over time, inclusion of Cinderella species, adoption by multiple actors, and funding of a range of activities beyond research. Our study paves the way for further research on key questions, such as campaign success rates, effectiveness, and drivers of adoption. Even though the capital input of crowdfunding so far has been modest compared to other conservation finance

  3. Geography of conservation spending, biodiversity, and culture.

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    McClanahan, T R; Rankin, P S

    2016-10-01

    We used linear and multivariate models to examine the associations between geography, biodiversity, per capita economic output, national spending on conservation, governance, and cultural traits in 55 countries. Cultural traits and social metrics of modernization correlated positively with national spending on conservation. The global distribution of this spending culture was poorly aligned with the distribution of biodiversity. Specifically, biodiversity was greater in the tropics where cultures tended to spend relatively less on conservation and tended to have higher collectivism, formalized and hierarchical leadership, and weaker governance. Consequently, nations lacking social traits frequently associated with modernization, environmentalism, and conservation spending have the largest component of Earth's biodiversity. This has significant implications for setting policies and priorities for resource management given that biological diversity is rapidly disappearing and cultural traits change slowly. Therefore, we suggest natural resource management adapt to and use characteristics of existing social organization rather than wait for or promote social values associated with conservation spending. Supporting biocultural traditions, engaging leaders to increase conservation commitments, cross-national efforts that complement attributes of cultures, and avoiding interference with nature may work best to conserve nature in collective and hierarchical societies. Spending in modernized nations may be a symbolic response to a symptom of economic development and environmental degradation, and here conservation actions need to ensure that biodiversity is not being lost. © 2016 Society for Conservation Biology.

  4. Habitat modeling for biodiversity conservation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bruce G. Marcot

    2006-01-01

    Habitat models address only 1 component of biodiversity but can be useful in addressing and managing single or multiple species and ecosystem functions, for projecting disturbance regimes, and in supporting decisions. I review categories and examples of habitat models, their utility for biodiversity conservation, and their roles in making conservation decisions. I...

  5. Integrating agricultural expansion into conservation biogeography: conflicts and priorities

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ricardo Dobrovolski

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available Increasing food production without compromising biodiversity is one of the great challenges for humanity. The aims of my thesis were to define spatial priorities for biodiversity conservation and to evaluate conservation conflicts considering agricultural expansion in the 21st century. I also tested the effect of globalizing conservation efforts on both food production and biodiversity conservation. I found spatial conflicts between biodiversity conservation and agricultural expansion. However, incorporating agricultural expansion data into the spatial prioritization process can significantly alleviate conservation conflicts, by reducing spatial correlation between the areas under high impact of agriculture and the priority areas for conservation. Moreover, developing conservation blueprints at the global scale, instead of the usual approach based on national boundaries, can benefit both food production and biodiversity. Based on these findings I conclude that the incorporation of agricultural expansion as a key component for defining global conservation strategies should be added to the list of solutions for our cultivated planet.

  6. Reconciling biodiversity and carbon conservation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thomas, Chris D; Anderson, Barbara J; Moilanen, Atte; Eigenbrod, Felix; Heinemeyer, Andreas; Quaife, Tristan; Roy, David B; Gillings, Simon; Armsworth, Paul R; Gaston, Kevin J

    2013-05-01

    Climate change is leading to the development of land-based mitigation and adaptation strategies that are likely to have substantial impacts on global biodiversity. Of these, approaches to maintain carbon within existing natural ecosystems could have particularly large benefits for biodiversity. However, the geographical distributions of terrestrial carbon stocks and biodiversity differ. Using conservation planning analyses for the New World and Britain, we conclude that a carbon-only strategy would not be effective at conserving biodiversity, as have previous studies. Nonetheless, we find that a combined carbon-biodiversity strategy could simultaneously protect 90% of carbon stocks (relative to a carbon-only conservation strategy) and > 90% of the biodiversity (relative to a biodiversity-only strategy) in both regions. This combined approach encapsulates the principle of complementarity, whereby locations that contain different sets of species are prioritised, and hence disproportionately safeguard localised species that are not protected effectively by carbon-only strategies. It is efficient because localised species are concentrated into small parts of the terrestrial land surface, whereas carbon is somewhat more evenly distributed; and carbon stocks protected in one location are equivalent to those protected elsewhere. Efficient compromises can only be achieved when biodiversity and carbon are incorporated together within a spatial planning process. © 2012 John Wiley & Sons Ltd/CNRS.

  7. Ecological restoration: Biodiversity and conservation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Vargas Rios, Orlando

    2011-01-01

    In this essay the principal concepts and methods applied on projects aimed at ecological restoration are reviewed, with emphasis on the relationship between conservation, biodiversity and restoration. The most common definitions are provided and the steps to take into account to develop projects on ecological restoration, which will be determined by the level of degradation of the ecosystem to be intervened.

  8. Island biodiversity conservation needs palaeoecology

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nogué, Sandra; de Nascimento, Lea; Froyd, Cynthia A.

    2017-01-01

    to human activities. Consequently, even the most degraded islands are a focus for restoration, eradication, and monitoring programmes to protect the remaining endemic and/or relict populations. Here, we build a framework that incorporates an assessment of the degree of change from multiple baseline...... and the introduction of non-native species. We provide exemplification of how such approaches can provide valuable information for biodiversity conservation managers of island ecosystems....

  9. Large conservation gains possible for global biodiversity facets.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pollock, Laura J; Thuiller, Wilfried; Jetz, Walter

    2017-06-01

    Different facets of biodiversity other than species numbers are increasingly appreciated as critical for maintaining the function of ecosystems and their services to humans. While new international policy and assessment processes such as the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES) recognize the importance of an increasingly global, quantitative and comprehensive approach to biodiversity protection, most insights are still focused on a single facet of biodiversity-species. Here we broaden the focus and provide an evaluation of how much of the world's species, functional and phylogenetic diversity of birds and mammals is currently protected and the scope for improvement. We show that the large existing gaps in the coverage for each facet of diversity could be remedied by a slight expansion of protected areas: an additional 5% of the land has the potential to more than triple the protected range of species or phylogenetic or functional units. Further, the same areas are often priorities for multiple diversity facets and for both taxa. However, we find that the choice of conservation strategy has a fundamental effect on outcomes. It is more difficult (that is, requires more land) to maximize basic representation of the global biodiversity pool than to maximize local diversity. Overall, species and phylogenetic priorities are more similar to each other than they are to functional priorities, and priorities for the different bird biodiversity facets are more similar than those of mammals. Our work shows that large gains in biodiversity protection are possible, while also highlighting the need to explicitly link desired conservation objectives and biodiversity metrics. We provide a framework and quantitative tools to advance these goals for multi-faceted biodiversity conservation.

  10. Limitations of outsourcing on-the-ground biodiversity conservation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Iacona, Gwenllian D; Bode, Michael; Armsworth, Paul R

    2016-12-01

    To counteract global species decline, modern biodiversity conservation engages in large projects, spends billions of dollars, and includes many organizations working simultaneously within regions. To add to this complexity, the conservation sector has hierarchical structure, where conservation actions are often outsourced by funders (foundations, government, etc.) to local organizations that work on-the-ground. In contrast, conservation science usually assumes that a single organization makes resource allocation decisions. This discrepancy calls for theory to understand how the expected biodiversity outcomes change when interactions between organizations are accounted for. Here, we used a game theoretic model to explore how biodiversity outcomes are affected by vertical and horizontal interactions between 3 conservation organizations: a funder that outsourced its actions and 2 local conservation organizations that work on-the-ground. Interactions between the organizations changed the spending decisions made by individual organizations, and thereby the magnitude and direction of the conservation benefits. We showed that funders would struggle to incentivize recipient organizations with set priorities to perform desired actions, even when they control substantial amounts of the funding and employ common contracting approaches to enhance outcomes. Instead, biodiversity outcomes depended on priority alignment across the organizations. Conservation outcomes for the funder were improved by strategic interactions when organizational priorities were well aligned, but decreased when priorities were misaligned. Meanwhile, local organizations had improved outcomes regardless of alignment due to additional funding in the system. Given that conservation often involves the aggregate actions of multiple organizations with different objectives, strategic interactions between organizations need to be considered if we are to predict possible outcomes of conservation programs or

  11. Biodiversity Areas under Threat: Overlap of Climate Change and Population Pressures on the World's Biodiversity Priorities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aukema, Juliann E; Pricope, Narcisa G; Husak, Gregory J; Lopez-Carr, David

    2017-01-01

    Humans and the ecosystem services they depend on are threatened by climate change. Places with high or growing human population as well as increasing climate variability, have a reduced ability to provide ecosystem services just as the need for these services is most critical. A spiral of vulnerability and ecosystem degradation often ensues in such places. We apply different global conservation schemes as proxies to examine the spatial relation between wet season precipitation, population change over three decades, and natural resource conservation. We pose two research questions: 1) Where are biodiversity and ecosystem services vulnerable to the combined effects of climate change and population growth? 2) Where are human populations vulnerable to degraded ecosystem services? Results suggest that globally only about 20% of the area between 50 degrees latitude North and South has experienced significant change-largely wetting-in wet season precipitation. Approximately 40% of rangelands and 30% of rainfed agriculture lands have experienced significant precipitation changes, with important implications for food security. Over recent decades a number of critical conservation areas experienced high population growth concurrent with significant wetting or drying (e.g. the Horn of Africa, Himalaya, Western Ghats, and Sri Lanka), posing challenges not only for human adaptation but also to the protection and sustenance of biodiversity and ecosystem services. Identifying areas of climate and population risk and their overlap with conservation priorities can help to target activities and resources that promote biodiversity and ecosystem services while improving human well-being.

  12. Biodiversity Areas under Threat: Overlap of Climate Change and Population Pressures on the World's Biodiversity Priorities.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Juliann E Aukema

    Full Text Available Humans and the ecosystem services they depend on are threatened by climate change. Places with high or growing human population as well as increasing climate variability, have a reduced ability to provide ecosystem services just as the need for these services is most critical. A spiral of vulnerability and ecosystem degradation often ensues in such places. We apply different global conservation schemes as proxies to examine the spatial relation between wet season precipitation, population change over three decades, and natural resource conservation. We pose two research questions: 1 Where are biodiversity and ecosystem services vulnerable to the combined effects of climate change and population growth? 2 Where are human populations vulnerable to degraded ecosystem services? Results suggest that globally only about 20% of the area between 50 degrees latitude North and South has experienced significant change-largely wetting-in wet season precipitation. Approximately 40% of rangelands and 30% of rainfed agriculture lands have experienced significant precipitation changes, with important implications for food security. Over recent decades a number of critical conservation areas experienced high population growth concurrent with significant wetting or drying (e.g. the Horn of Africa, Himalaya, Western Ghats, and Sri Lanka, posing challenges not only for human adaptation but also to the protection and sustenance of biodiversity and ecosystem services. Identifying areas of climate and population risk and their overlap with conservation priorities can help to target activities and resources that promote biodiversity and ecosystem services while improving human well-being.

  13. Large conservation gains possible for global biodiversity facets

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pollock, Laura J.; Thuiller, Wilfried; Jetz, Walter

    2017-06-01

    Different facets of biodiversity other than species numbers are increasingly appreciated as critical for maintaining the function of ecosystems and their services to humans. While new international policy and assessment processes such as the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES) recognize the importance of an increasingly global, quantitative and comprehensive approach to biodiversity protection, most insights are still focused on a single facet of biodiversity—species. Here we broaden the focus and provide an evaluation of how much of the world’s species, functional and phylogenetic diversity of birds and mammals is currently protected and the scope for improvement. We show that the large existing gaps in the coverage for each facet of diversity could be remedied by a slight expansion of protected areas: an additional 5% of the land has the potential to more than triple the protected range of species or phylogenetic or functional units. Further, the same areas are often priorities for multiple diversity facets and for both taxa. However, we find that the choice of conservation strategy has a fundamental effect on outcomes. It is more difficult (that is, requires more land) to maximize basic representation of the global biodiversity pool than to maximize local diversity. Overall, species and phylogenetic priorities are more similar to each other than they are to functional priorities, and priorities for the different bird biodiversity facets are more similar than those of mammals. Our work shows that large gains in biodiversity protection are possible, while also highlighting the need to explicitly link desired conservation objectives and biodiversity metrics. We provide a framework and quantitative tools to advance these goals for multi-faceted biodiversity conservation.

  14. Conserving biodiversity on native rangelands: Symposium proceedings

    Science.gov (United States)

    Daniel W. Uresk; Greg L. Schenbeck; James T. O' Rourke

    1997-01-01

    These proceedings are the result of a symposium, "Conserving biodiversity on native rangelands" held on August 17, 1995 in Fort Robinson State Park, NE. The purpose of this symposium was to provide a forum to discuss how elements of rangeland biodiversity are being conserved today. We asked, "How resilient and sustainable are rangeland systems to the...

  15. Conserving critical sites for biodiversity provides disproportionate benefits to people

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Larsen, Frank Wugt; Turner, Will R.; Brooks, Thomas M.

    2012-01-01

    Protecting natural habitats in priority areas is essential to halt the loss of biodiversity. Yet whether these benefits for biodiversity also yield benefits for human well-being remains controversial. Here we assess the potential human well-being benefits of safeguarding a global network of sites......) benefits to maintenance of human cultural diversity - significantly exceeding those anticipated from randomly selected sites within the same countries and ecoregions. Results suggest that safeguarding sites important for biodiversity conservation provides substantial benefits to human well-being....

  16. The role of trade-offs in biodiversity conservation planning: linking ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    A recent whole-country planning study for Papua New Guinea illustrates the importance of complementarity-based trade-offs in determining priority areas for biodiversity conservation, and for designing economic instruments such as biodiversity levies and offsets. Two international biodiversity programs provide important ...

  17. Economic growth, biodiversity loss and conservation effort.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dietz, Simon; Adger, W Neil

    2003-05-01

    This paper investigates the relationship between economic growth, biodiversity loss and efforts to conserve biodiversity using a combination of panel and cross section data. If economic growth is a cause of biodiversity loss through habitat transformation and other means, then we would expect an inverse relationship. But if higher levels of income are associated with increasing real demand for biodiversity conservation, then investment to protect remaining diversity should grow and the rate of biodiversity loss should slow with growth. Initially, economic growth and biodiversity loss are examined within the framework of the environmental Kuznets hypothesis. Biodiversity is represented by predicted species richness, generated for tropical terrestrial biodiversity using a species-area relationship. The environmental Kuznets hypothesis is investigated with reference to comparison of fixed and random effects models to allow the relationship to vary for each country. It is concluded that an environmental Kuznets curve between income and rates of loss of habitat and species does not exist in this case. The role of conservation effort in addressing environmental problems is examined through state protection of land and the regulation of trade in endangered species, two important means of biodiversity conservation. This analysis shows that the extent of government environmental policy increases with economic development. We argue that, although the data are problematic, the implications of these models is that conservation effort can only ever result in a partial deceleration of biodiversity decline partly because protected areas serve multiple functions and are not necessarily designated to protect biodiversity. Nevertheless institutional and policy response components of the income biodiversity relationship are important but are not well captured through cross-country regression analysis.

  18. Biodiversity conservation in agricultural landscapes

    OpenAIRE

    Josefsson, Jonas

    2015-01-01

    Agricultural industrialization alters rural landscapes in Europe, causing large-scale and rapid loss of important biodiversity. The principal instruments to protect farmland biodiversity are various agri-environmental measures (AEMs) in the EU Common Agricultural Policy (CAP). However, growing awareness of shortcomings to CAP biodiversity integration prompts examination of causes and potential solutions. This thesis assesses the importance of structural heterogeneity of crop and non-crop habi...

  19. The biodiversity conservation game with heterogeneous countries

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Winands, S.; Holm-Müller, K.; Weikard, H.P.

    2013-01-01

    Biodiversity is an essential resource, which we classify as conditionally-renewable. In order to achieve conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity virtually all nation states signed the United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity. In this paper we investigate how the heterogeneity of

  20. language as a culture and biodiversity conservation

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Guest

    biodiversity conservation because life in a particular human environment is ... communication ,by language, by word expression as cultural genes, stories, legends and ..... for expressing individual identity, preserve culture, understanding the ...

  1. Maximizing species conservation in continental Ecuador: a case of systematic conservation planning for biodiverse regions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lessmann, Janeth; Muñoz, Jesús; Bonaccorso, Elisa

    2014-01-01

    Ecuador has the largest number of species by area worldwide, but also a low representation of species within its protected areas. Here, we applied systematic conservation planning to identify potential areas for conservation in continental Ecuador, with the aim of increasing the representation of terrestrial species diversity in the protected area network. We selected 809 terrestrial species (amphibians, birds, mammals, and plants), for which distributions were estimated via species distribution models (SDMs), using Maxent. For each species we established conservation goals based on conservation priorities, and estimated new potential protected areas using Marxan conservation planning software. For each selected area, we determined their conservation priority and feasibility of establishment, two important aspects in the decision-making processes. We found that according to our conservation goals, the current protected area network contains large conservation gaps. Potential areas for conservation almost double the surface area of currently protected areas. Most of the newly proposed areas are located in the Coast, a region with large conservation gaps and irreversible changes in land use. The most feasible areas for conservation were found in the Amazon and Andes regions, which encompass more undisturbed habitats, and already harbor most of the current reserves. Our study allows defining a viable strategy for preserving Ecuador's biodiversity, by combining SDMs, GIS-based decision-support software, and priority and feasibility assessments of the selected areas. This approach is useful for complementing protected area networks in countries with great biodiversity, insufficient biological information, and limited resources for conservation. PMID:25360277

  2. Global mapping of ecosystem services and conservation priorities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Naidoo, R.; Balmford, A.; Costanza, R.; Fisher, B.; Green, R. E.; Lehner, B.; Malcolm, T. R.; Ricketts, T. H.

    2008-01-01

    Global efforts to conserve biodiversity have the potential to deliver economic benefits to people (i.e., “ecosystem services”). However, regions for which conservation benefits both biodiversity and ecosystem services cannot be identified unless ecosystem services can be quantified and valued and their areas of production mapped. Here we review the theory, data, and analyses needed to produce such maps and find that data availability allows us to quantify imperfect global proxies for only four ecosystem services. Using this incomplete set as an illustration, we compare ecosystem service maps with the global distributions of conventional targets for biodiversity conservation. Our preliminary results show that regions selected to maximize biodiversity provide no more ecosystem services than regions chosen randomly. Furthermore, spatial concordance among different services, and between ecosystem services and established conservation priorities, varies widely. Despite this lack of general concordance, “win–win” areas—regions important for both ecosystem services and biodiversity—can be usefully identified, both among ecoregions and at finer scales within them. An ambitious interdisciplinary research effort is needed to move beyond these preliminary and illustrative analyses to fully assess synergies and trade-offs in conserving biodiversity and ecosystem services. PMID:18621701

  3. Spatial relationship between climatic diversity and biodiversity conservation value.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Junjun; Wu, Ruidong; He, Daming; Yang, Feiling; Hu, Peijun; Lin, Shiwei; Wu, Wei; Diao, Yixin; Guo, Yang

    2018-06-04

    Capturing the full range of climatic diversity in a reserve network is expected to improve the resilience of biodiversity to climate change. Therefore, a study on systematic conservation planning for climatic diversity that explicitly or implicitly hypothesizes that regions with higher climatic diversity will support greater biodiversity is needed. However, little is known about the extent and generality of this hypothesis. This study utilized the case of Yunnan, southwest China, to quantitatively classify climatic units and modeled 4 climatic diversity indicators, including the variety of climatic units (VCU), rarity of climatic units (RCU), endemism of climatic units (ECU) and a composite index of climatic units (CICD). We used 5 reliable priority conservation area (PCA) schemes to represent the areas with high biodiversity conservation value. We then investigated the spatial relationships between the 4 climatic diversity indicators and the 5 PCA schemes and assessed the representation of climatic diversity within the existing nature reserves. The CICD exhibited the best performance for indicating high conservation value areas, followed by the ECU and RCU. However, contrary to conventional knowledge, VCU did not show a positive association with biodiversity conservation value. The rarer or more endemic climatic units tended to have higher reserve coverage than the more common units. However, only 28 units covering 10.5% of the land in Yunnan had more than 17% of their areas protected. In addition to climatic factors, topography and human disturbances also significantly affected the relationship between climatic diversity and biodiversity conservation value. This analysis suggests that climatic diversity can be an effective surrogate for establishing a more robust reserve network under climate change in Yunnan. Our study improves the understanding of the relationship between climatic diversity and biodiversity and helps build an evidence-based foundation for

  4. Creating biodiversity partnerships: The Nature Conservancy's perspective

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sawhill, John C.

    1996-11-01

    The Nature Conservancy is an international organization dedicated to the mission of conserving biodiversity throughout the world. By working in a nonconfrontational manner, an approach that has promoted both government and corporate sponsorship of its activities, The Nature Conservancy has developed symbiotic relationships with many electric utility companies. Drawing on the organization's experiences, and the experiences of the author as the President and Chief Executive Officer of The Nature Conservancy, five broad areas of cooperation between conservation organizations and the utility industry are explored: landmanagement agreements, mitigation projects, conflictavoidance programs, program support, and volunteer activities. The paper is concluded with comments on the future trends of biodiversity conservation, challenging the electric utility industry to become involved with conservation efforts by forming cooperative partnerships.

  5. Novel urban ecosystems, biodiversity, and conservation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kowarik, Ingo

    2011-01-01

    With increasing urbanization the importance of cities for biodiversity conservation grows. This paper reviews the ways in which biodiversity is affected by urbanization and discusses the consequences of different conservation approaches. Cities can be richer in plant species, including in native species, than rural areas. Alien species can lead to both homogenization and differentiation among urban regions. Urban habitats can harbor self-sustaining populations of rare and endangered native species, but cannot replace the complete functionality of (semi-)natural remnants. While many conservation approaches tend to focus on such relict habitats and native species in urban settings, this paper argues for a paradigm shift towards considering the whole range of urban ecosystems. Although conservation attitudes may be challenged by the novelty of some urban ecosystems, which are often linked to high numbers of nonnative species, it is promising to consider their associated ecosystem services, social benefits, and possible contribution to biodiversity conservation. - Highlights: → This paper reviews biotic responses to urbanization and urban conservation approaches. → Cities may be rich in both native and nonnative species. → Urban habitats cannot replace the functionality of natural remnants. → However, even novel urban habitats may harbour rare and endangered species. → Conservation approaches should consider the perspective of novel urban ecosystems. - This paper reviews the ways in which biodiversity is affected by urbanization and argues for expanding urban conservation approaches.

  6. Novel urban ecosystems, biodiversity, and conservation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kowarik, Ingo, E-mail: kowarik@tu-berlin.de [Department of Ecology, Technische Universitaet Berlin, Rothenburgstr. 12, D 12165 Berlin (Germany)

    2011-08-15

    With increasing urbanization the importance of cities for biodiversity conservation grows. This paper reviews the ways in which biodiversity is affected by urbanization and discusses the consequences of different conservation approaches. Cities can be richer in plant species, including in native species, than rural areas. Alien species can lead to both homogenization and differentiation among urban regions. Urban habitats can harbor self-sustaining populations of rare and endangered native species, but cannot replace the complete functionality of (semi-)natural remnants. While many conservation approaches tend to focus on such relict habitats and native species in urban settings, this paper argues for a paradigm shift towards considering the whole range of urban ecosystems. Although conservation attitudes may be challenged by the novelty of some urban ecosystems, which are often linked to high numbers of nonnative species, it is promising to consider their associated ecosystem services, social benefits, and possible contribution to biodiversity conservation. - Highlights: > This paper reviews biotic responses to urbanization and urban conservation approaches. > Cities may be rich in both native and nonnative species. > Urban habitats cannot replace the functionality of natural remnants. > However, even novel urban habitats may harbour rare and endangered species. > Conservation approaches should consider the perspective of novel urban ecosystems. - This paper reviews the ways in which biodiversity is affected by urbanization and argues for expanding urban conservation approaches.

  7. Priority Questions and Horizon Scanning for Conservation: A Comparative Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kark, Salit; Sutherland, William J.; Shanas, Uri; Klass, Keren; Achisar, Hila; Dayan, Tamar; Gavrieli, Yael; Justo-Hanani, Ronit; Mandelik, Yael; Orion, Nir; Pargament, David; Portman, Michelle; Reisman-Berman, Orna; Safriel, Uriel N.; Schaffer, Gad; Steiner, Noa; Tauber, Israel; Levin, Noam

    2016-01-01

    Several projects aimed at identifying priority issues for conservation with high relevance to policy have recently been completed in several countries. Two major types of projects have been undertaken, aimed at identifying (i) policy-relevant questions most imperative to conservation and (ii) horizon scanning topics, defined as emerging issues that are expected to have substantial implications for biodiversity conservation and policy in the future. Here, we provide the first overview of the outcomes of biodiversity and conservation-oriented projects recently completed around the world using this framework. We also include the results of the first questions and horizon scanning project completed for a Mediterranean country. Overall, the outcomes of the different projects undertaken (at the global scale, in the UK, US, Canada, Switzerland and in Israel) were strongly correlated in terms of the proportion of questions and/or horizon scanning topics selected when comparing different topic areas. However, some major differences were found across regions. There was large variation among regions in the percentage of proactive (i.e. action and response oriented) versus descriptive (non-response oriented) priority questions and in the emphasis given to socio-political issues. Substantial differences were also found when comparing outcomes of priority questions versus horizon scanning projects undertaken for the same region. For example, issues related to climate change, human demography and marine ecosystems received higher priority as horizon scanning topics, while ecosystem services were more emphasized as current priority questions. We suggest that future initiatives aimed at identifying priority conservation questions and horizon scanning topics should allow simultaneous identification of both current and future priority issues, as presented here for the first time. We propose that further emphasis on social-political issues should be explicitly integrated into future

  8. Biodiversity conservation and armed conflict: a warfare ecology perspective.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hanson, Thor

    2018-04-23

    The activities involved in preparing for, executing, and recovering from armed conflict are globally pervasive and consequential, with significant impacts on natural systems. Effects on biodiversity are predominantly negative, produced by direct and indirect battlefield impacts, as well as the general breakdown of social, economic, and governance systems during wartime. Certain conservation opportunities do occur, however, particularly on lands set aside for training exercises, buffer zones, and peace parks. Here, the relationship between armed conflict and biodiversity is reviewed using the temporal framework of warfare ecology, which defines warfare as an ongoing process of three overlapping stages: preparations, war (armed conflict), and postwar activities. Several themes emerge from recent studies, including a heightened awareness of biodiversity conservation on military lands, the potential for scientific and conservation engagement to mitigate negative biodiversity impacts in war zones, and the importance of the postwar period for incorporating biodiversity priorities into reconstruction and recovery efforts. Research limitations and knowledge gaps are also discussed. © 2018 New York Academy of Sciences.

  9. Perverse Market Outcomes from Biodiversity Conservation Interventions

    OpenAIRE

    Lim, F.K.S.; Carrasco, L.R.; McHardy, J.; Edwards, D.P.

    2016-01-01

    Conservation interventions are being implemented at various spatial scales to reduce the impacts of rising global population and affluence on biodiversity and ecosystems. While the direct impacts of these conservation efforts are considered, the unintended consequences brought about by market feedback effects are often overlooked. Perverse market outcomes could result in reduced or even reversed net impacts of conservation efforts. We develop an economic framework to describe how the intended...

  10. Educating for biodiversity conservation in urban parks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Guerra, M. C.

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available This article is intended to propose a procedure for learning about biodiversity in urban parks, as a contribution for educating conservation of natural resources. The procedure was named “Diagnosis of biodiversity conservation status in urban parks”. It comprises for stages describing the physic, geographic, socio-historic, and cultural study of the park as well as a taxonomic inventory of species, its distribution, presence in Cuba, and menaces they are subjected to. This facilitates to carry out educative activities. The introduction of the procedure is thought of from an ethno-biological and interdisciplinary perspective for training students in biological, geographical, historical, cultural and ethnological procedures, seeking a holistic approach to environment. The effectiveness of the proposal was appraised by accounting the experience of a class at “Casino Campestre” park in Camagüey City. Key words: biodiversity, urban parks, procedures, conservation training

  11. Biodiversity funds and conservation needs in the EU under climate change.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lung, Tobias; Meller, Laura; van Teeffelen, Astrid J A; Thuiller, Wilfried; Cabeza, Mar

    2014-07-01

    Despite ambitious biodiversity policy goals, less than a fifth of the European Union's (EU) legally protected species and habitats show a favorable conservation status. The recent EU biodiversity strategy recognizes that climate change adds to the challenge of halting biodiversity loss, and that an optimal distribution of financial resources is needed. Here, we analyze recent EU biodiversity funding from a climate change perspective. We compare the allocation of funds to the distribution of both current conservation priorities (within and beyond Natura 2000) and future conservation needs at the level of NUTS-2 regions, using modelled bird distributions as indicators of conservation value. We find that funding is reasonably well aligned with current conservation efforts but poorly fit with future needs under climate change, indicating obstacles for implementing adaptation measures. We suggest revising EU biodiversity funding instruments for the 2014-2020 budget period to better account for potential climate change impacts on biodiversity.

  12. Targeting global conservation funding to limit immediate biodiversity declines.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Waldron, Anthony; Mooers, Arne O; Miller, Daniel C; Nibbelink, Nate; Redding, David; Kuhn, Tyler S; Roberts, J Timmons; Gittleman, John L

    2013-07-16

    Inadequate funding levels are a major impediment to effective global biodiversity conservation and are likely associated with recent failures to meet United Nations biodiversity targets. Some countries are more severely underfunded than others and therefore represent urgent financial priorities. However, attempts to identify these highly underfunded countries have been hampered for decades by poor and incomplete data on actual spending, coupled with uncertainty and lack of consensus over the relative size of spending gaps. Here, we assemble a global database of annual conservation spending. We then develop a statistical model that explains 86% of variation in conservation expenditures, and use this to identify countries where funding is robustly below expected levels. The 40 most severely underfunded countries contain 32% of all threatened mammalian diversity and include neighbors in some of the world's most biodiversity-rich areas (Sundaland, Wallacea, and Near Oceania). However, very modest increases in international assistance would achieve a large improvement in the relative adequacy of global conservation finance. Our results could therefore be quickly applied to limit immediate biodiversity losses at relatively little cost.

  13. Optimal fire histories for biodiversity conservation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kelly, Luke T; Bennett, Andrew F; Clarke, Michael F; McCarthy, Michael A

    2015-04-01

    Fire is used as a management tool for biodiversity conservation worldwide. A common objective is to avoid population extinctions due to inappropriate fire regimes. However, in many ecosystems, it is unclear what mix of fire histories will achieve this goal. We determined the optimal fire history of a given area for biological conservation with a method that links tools from 3 fields of research: species distribution modeling, composite indices of biodiversity, and decision science. We based our case study on extensive field surveys of birds, reptiles, and mammals in fire-prone semi-arid Australia. First, we developed statistical models of species' responses to fire history. Second, we determined the optimal allocation of successional states in a given area, based on the geometric mean of species relative abundance. Finally, we showed how conservation targets based on this index can be incorporated into a decision-making framework for fire management. Pyrodiversity per se did not necessarily promote vertebrate biodiversity. Maximizing pyrodiversity by having an even allocation of successional states did not maximize the geometric mean abundance of bird species. Older vegetation was disproportionately important for the conservation of birds, reptiles, and small mammals. Because our method defines fire management objectives based on the habitat requirements of multiple species in the community, it could be used widely to maximize biodiversity in fire-prone ecosystems. © 2014 Society for Conservation Biology.

  14. Land market feedbacks can undermine biodiversity conservation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Armsworth, Paul R; Daily, Gretchen C; Kareiva, Peter; Sanchirico, James N

    2006-04-04

    The full or partial purchase of land has become a cornerstone of efforts to conserve biodiversity in countries with strong private property rights. Methods used to target areas for acquisition typically ignore land market dynamics. We show how conservation purchases affect land prices and generate feedbacks that can undermine conservation goals, either by displacing development toward biologically valuable areas or by accelerating its pace. The impact of these market feedbacks on the effectiveness of conservation depends on the ecological value of land outside nature reserves. Traditional, noneconomic approaches to site prioritization should perform adequately in places where land outside reserves supports little biodiversity. However, these approaches will perform poorly in locations where the countryside surrounding reserves is important for species' persistence. Conservation investments can sometimes even be counterproductive, condemning more species than they save. Conservation is most likely to be compromised in the absence of accurate information on species distributions, which provides a strong argument for improving inventories of biodiversity. Accounting for land market dynamics in conservation planning is crucial for making smart investment decisions.

  15. Biodiversity Conservation and Conservation Biotechnology Tools

    Science.gov (United States)

    This special issue is dedicated to the in vitro tools and methods used to conserve the genetic diversity of rare and threatened species from around the world. Species that are on the brink of extinction, due to the rapid loss of genetic diversity and habitat, come mainly from resource poor areas the...

  16. Making a better case for biodiversity conservation

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bugter, Rob; Harrison, Paula; Haslett, John; Tinch, Rob

    2018-01-01

    This Editorial to the BESAFE special issue introduces the project and its approach and case studies. The BESAFE (EC 7th Framework programme) project investigated how the effectiveness of different types of arguments for biodiversity conservation depends on the context in which they are used. Our

  17. biodiversity conservation problems and their implication on ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    YAGER

    2018-03-01

    Mar 1, 2018 ... 2Department of Wildlife and Ecotourism Management, University of Ibadan, Ibadan, Nigeria. ... Data were collected from villagers in support zone communities and staff of ... Biodiversity conservation on the other hand is a ... MATERIALS AND METHOD ..... in the park leading to fauna migration, soil erosion.

  18. Traditional African Knowledge In Biodiversity Conservation ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The tropical forest ecosystem is one of the most important ecosystems of the world, because it contains a large proportion of the world's biodiversity and provides many environmental functions. Local communities have successfully conserved these resources that are of interest to them through laws and taboos. These range ...

  19. Molecular Tools For Biodiversity Conservation

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    conservation in India. They are ... cuss these with case studies on some cat species in India. Introduction ... fallout since vital resources such as clean air, water, and food ... tion, climate change has become a much-dreaded catchword, and .... (Eastern. Mangroves Total and West- ern). /Inland wetlands. DNA extraction. 66.

  20. Molecular Tools For Biodiversity Conservation

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    ... habits that make them difficultstudy subjects when using conventional field techniques.Molecular tools can be used to decipher distributions andpopulation connectedness in fragmented habitats and identifypopulations of immediate conservation concern. We discussthese with case studies on some cat species in India.

  1. Conserving what, where and how? Cost-efficient measures to conserve biodiversity in Denmark

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Petersen, Anders Højgård; Strange, Niels; Anthon, Signe

    2016-01-01

    Biodiversity conservation efforts in Europe have traditionally focused on farmland and open nature areas such as grasslands, heathlands and meadows, while little attention has been devoted to conservation actions in forest. Using detailed information on the geographical distribution of about 900...... terrestrial species in Denmark we apply systematic conservation planning techniques to identify how to protect biodiversity at the lowest cost to society. The results suggest that conservation actions in forest should be given a higher priority. Thus, three to four times the number of forest species...... are protected per million € compared with species living in open land natural areas. Furthermore, a gap analysis finds the current designation of Natura 2000 and other protected areas is skewed toward open land natural areas, and insufficient to meet the conservation targets on forest species....

  2. Biodiversity conservation in Costa Rica: a correspondence analysis between identified biodiversity hotspots (Araceae, Arecaceae, Bromeliaceae, and Scarabaeinae and conservation priority life zones Conservación de la biodiversidad en Costa Rica: análisis de la correspondencia entre áreas identificadas clave por su biodiversidad (Araceae, Arecaceae, Bromeliaceae y Scarabaeinae y zonas de vida prioritarias para la conservación

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bert Kohlmann

    2010-08-01

    Full Text Available This paper undertook an analysis of the distribution of high species richness and areas of endemism based on plants (Araceae, Arecaceae, and Bromeliaceae and dung beetles (Scarabaeinae inhabiting the different Holdridge Life Zones of Costa Rica. Using a geographic information system (GIS we analyzed biogeographic provinces, in terms of their representativity in sampling areas, life zones, and protected areas. Species richness and endemism maps served as a base for conducting a gap analysis and defining 6 different levels of high priority conservation areas. What percentages of these priority areas are under some type of protection or conservation scheme and which of these areas should be enlarged were also investigated. The degree of feasibility that these areas under protection have for enlargement is indicated. A list is included of all the aforementioned registered species for Costa Rica, as well as their presence in the different Holdridge Life Zones and their endemism status. Four areas with the highest species richness were identified, and 3 new areas of endemism are proposed. The most important conservation priority areas are the tropical wet forests on the northeastern lowlands, the Osa Peninsula region, and the premontane wet forest along the Guanacaste, Tilarán and Central mountain ranges. This study clearly demonstrates the need to include and compare different groups of organisms in biodiversity-endemism studies, in order to obtain more robust and finer-grained studies.El presente estudio analiza la distribución de áreas de alta riqueza específica y endemismos basado en plantas (Araceae, Arecaceae, y Bromeliaceae y escarabajos del estiércol (Scarabaeinae, que habitan las diferentes Zonas de Vida de Holdridge en Costa Rica. Mediante el uso de un sistema de información geográfica (SIG analizamos provincias biogeográficas, en relación a la representatividad de las áreas de muestreo, las zonas de vida y las áreas protegidas

  3. Global conservation priorities for marine turtles.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bryan P Wallace

    Full Text Available Where conservation resources are limited and conservation targets are diverse, robust yet flexible priority-setting frameworks are vital. Priority-setting is especially important for geographically widespread species with distinct populations subject to multiple threats that operate on different spatial and temporal scales. Marine turtles are widely distributed and exhibit intra-specific variations in population sizes and trends, as well as reproduction and morphology. However, current global extinction risk assessment frameworks do not assess conservation status of spatially and biologically distinct marine turtle Regional Management Units (RMUs, and thus do not capture variations in population trends, impacts of threats, or necessary conservation actions across individual populations. To address this issue, we developed a new assessment framework that allowed us to evaluate, compare and organize marine turtle RMUs according to status and threats criteria. Because conservation priorities can vary widely (i.e. from avoiding imminent extinction to maintaining long-term monitoring efforts we developed a "conservation priorities portfolio" system using categories of paired risk and threats scores for all RMUs (n = 58. We performed these assessments and rankings globally, by species, by ocean basin, and by recognized geopolitical bodies to identify patterns in risk, threats, and data gaps at different scales. This process resulted in characterization of risk and threats to all marine turtle RMUs, including identification of the world's 11 most endangered marine turtle RMUs based on highest risk and threats scores. This system also highlighted important gaps in available information that is crucial for accurate conservation assessments. Overall, this priority-setting framework can provide guidance for research and conservation priorities at multiple relevant scales, and should serve as a model for conservation status assessments and priority

  4. Cranes, crops and conservation: understanding human perceptions of biodiversity conservation in South Korea's Civilian Control Zone.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Jin-Oh; Steiner, Frederick; Mueller, Elizabeth

    2011-01-01

    South Korea's Civilian Control Zone (CCZ), a relatively untouched area due to tight military oversight since the end of Korean War, has received considerable attention nationally and internationally for its rich biodiversity. However, the exclusion of local communities from the process of defining problems and goals and of setting priorities for biodiversity conservation has halted a series of biodiversity conservation efforts. Through qualitative research, we explored CCZ farmers' views of key problems and issues and also the sources of their opposition to the government-initiated conservation approaches. Key findings include the farmers' concerns about the impact of conservation restrictions on their access to necessary resources needed to farm, wildlife impacts on the value of rice and other agricultural goods they produce, and farmers' strong distrust of government, the military, and planners, based on their experiences with past conservation processes. The findings regarding farmers' perceptions should prove useful for the design of future participatory planning processes for biodiversity conservation in the CCZ. This case highlights how conservative measures, perceived to be imposed from above--however scientifically valuable--can be undermined and suggests the value that must be placed on communication among planners and stakeholders.

  5. Macroeconomic policy, growth, and biodiversity conservation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lawn, Philip

    2008-12-01

    To successfully achieve biodiversity conservation, the amount of ecosystem structure available for economic production must be determined by, and subject to, conservation needs. As such, the scale of economic systems must remain within the limits imposed by the need to preserve critical ecosystems and the regenerative and waste assimilative capacities of the ecosphere. These limits are determined by biophysical criteria, yet macroeconomics involves the use of economic instruments designed to meet economic criteria that have no capacity to achieve biophysically based targets. Macroeconomic policy cannot, therefore, directly solve the biodiversity erosion crisis. Nevertheless, good macroeconomic policy is still important given that bad macroeconomy policy is likely to reduce human well-being and increase the likelihood of social upheaval that could undermine conservation efforts.

  6. Biodiversity, conservation biology, and rational choice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frank, David

    2014-03-01

    This paper critically discusses two areas of Sahotra Sarkar's recent work in environmental philosophy: biodiversity and conservation biology and roles for decision theory in incorporating values explicitly in the environmental policy process. I argue that Sarkar's emphasis on the practices of conservation biologists, and especially the role of social and cultural values in the choice of biodiversity constituents, restricts his conception of biodiversity to particular practical conservation contexts. I argue that life scientists have many reasons to measure many types of diversity, and that biodiversity metrics could be value-free. I argue that Sarkar's emphasis on the limitations of normative decision theory is in tension with his statement that decision theory can "put science and ethics together." I also challenge his claim that multi-criteria decision tools lacking axiomatic foundations in preference and utility theory are "without a rational basis," by presenting a case of a simple "outranking" multi-criteria decision rule that can violate a basic normative requirement of preferences (transitivity) and ask whether there may nevertheless be contexts in which such a procedure might assist decision makers. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  7. Threats from urban expansion, agricultural transformation and forest loss on global conservation priority areas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moilanen, Atte; Di Minin, Enrico

    2017-01-01

    Including threats in spatial conservation prioritization helps identify areas for conservation actions where biodiversity is at imminent risk of extinction. At the global level, an important limitation when identifying spatial priorities for conservation actions is the lack of information on the spatial distribution of threats. Here, we identify spatial conservation priorities under three prominent threats to biodiversity (residential and commercial development, agricultural expansion, and forest loss), which are primary drivers of habitat loss and threaten the persistence of the highest number of species in the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List, and for which spatial data is available. We first explore how global priority areas for the conservation of vertebrate (mammals, birds, and amphibians) species coded in the Red List as vulnerable to each threat differ spatially. We then identify spatial conservation priorities for all species vulnerable to all threats. Finally, we identify the potentially most threatened areas by overlapping the identified priority areas for conservation with maps for each threat. We repeat the same with four other well-known global conservation priority area schemes, namely Key Biodiversity Areas, Biodiversity Hotspots, the global Protected Area Network, and Wilderness Areas. We find that residential and commercial development directly threatens only about 4% of the global top 17% priority areas for species vulnerable under this threat. However, 50% of the high priority areas for species vulnerable to forest loss overlap with areas that have already experienced some forest loss. Agricultural expansion overlapped with ~20% of high priority areas. Biodiversity Hotspots had the greatest proportion of their total area under direct threat from all threats, while expansion of low intensity agriculture was found to pose an imminent threat to Wilderness Areas under future agricultural expansion. Our results

  8. A conservation agenda for the Pantanal's biodiversity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alho, C J R; Sabino, J

    2011-04-01

    The Pantanal's biodiversity constitutes a valuable natural resource, in economic, cultural, recreational, aesthetic, scientific and educational terms. The vegetation plus the seasonal productivity support a diverse and abundant fauna. Many endangered species occur in the region, and waterfowl are exceptionally abundant during the dry season. Losses of biodiversity and its associated natural habitats within the Pantanal occur as a result of unsustainable land use. Implementation of protected areas is only a part of the conservation strategy needed. We analyse biodiversity threats to the biome under seven major categories: 1) conversion of natural vegetation into pasture and agricultural crops, 2) destruction or degradation of habitat mainly due to wild fire, 3) overexploitation of species mainly by unsustainable fishing, 4) water pollution, 5) river flow modification with implantation of small hydroelectric plants, 6) unsustainable tourism, and 7) introduction of invasive exotic species.

  9. MOUNTAIN NATURAL BIODIVERSITY CONSERVATION IN RUSSIA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Arkady Tishkov

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available High biodiversity and degree of endemism of mountain biota strengthen the mountain regions’ status for the territorial nature conservation. Analysis of the protected areas’ representativeness in various mountain regions of Russia shows some discrepancy between their quantity, square and regional biodiversity originality. The biggest divergences are marked for the Northern Caucasus. The main problems: small area of the protected territories and also cluster character of their spatial distribution, mostly in the high mountains are not supposed to conform with the highest values of the regional flora’s and fauna’s uniqueness, to compensate representativeness of the protected biota and, in anyway, to correspond with the purpose of nature protection frame—the protected territories ecologic network’s forming. The situation in the Urals, Siberia and the Far East seems to be better. The large areas of the protected territories are in general agreement with the high originality of the nature ecosystems. Nevertheless each concrete case needs analysis of the regional biota’s and ecosystems’ biodiversity distribution within the protected areas, including character and (or unique elements of the regional biodiversity to be held. The development of the effectual territorial conservation of mountain regions needs differential approach. The creation of the large representative parcels of nature landscapes in the key-areas has the considerable meaning in the low-developed regions, difficult to access. And well-developed regions have the necessity of nature protected territories’ network development and the planning of the ecological frame’s forming. The territorial biodiversity conservation, including the system of federal, regional and local levels with protective conservation of the rare species has to be combined with ecosystem’s restoration, especially in the zones disturbed by erosion, recreation and military actions. Also it is

  10. Is It Time for Synthetic Biodiversity Conservation?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Piaggio, Antoinette J; Segelbacher, Gernot; Seddon, Philip J; Alphey, Luke; Bennett, Elizabeth L; Carlson, Robert H; Friedman, Robert M; Kanavy, Dona; Phelan, Ryan; Redford, Kent H; Rosales, Marina; Slobodian, Lydia; Wheeler, Keith

    2017-02-01

    Evidence indicates that, despite some critical successes, current conservation approaches are not slowing the overall rate of biodiversity loss. The field of synthetic biology, which is capable of altering natural genomes with extremely precise editing, might offer the potential to resolve some intractable conservation problems (e.g., invasive species or pathogens). However, it is our opinion that there has been insufficient engagement by the conservation community with practitioners of synthetic biology. We contend that rapid, large-scale engagement of these two communities is urgently needed to avoid unintended and deleterious ecological consequences. To this point we describe case studies where synthetic biology is currently being applied to conservation, and we highlight the benefits to conservation biologists from engaging with this emerging technology. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  11. Biodiversity Areas under Threat: Overlap of Climate Change and Population Pressures on the World’s Biodiversity Priorities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pricope, Narcisa G.; Husak, Gregory J.; Lopez-Carr, David

    2017-01-01

    Humans and the ecosystem services they depend on are threatened by climate change. Places with high or growing human population as well as increasing climate variability, have a reduced ability to provide ecosystem services just as the need for these services is most critical. A spiral of vulnerability and ecosystem degradation often ensues in such places. We apply different global conservation schemes as proxies to examine the spatial relation between wet season precipitation, population change over three decades, and natural resource conservation. We pose two research questions: 1) Where are biodiversity and ecosystem services vulnerable to the combined effects of climate change and population growth? 2) Where are human populations vulnerable to degraded ecosystem services? Results suggest that globally only about 20% of the area between 50 degrees latitude North and South has experienced significant change–largely wetting–in wet season precipitation. Approximately 40% of rangelands and 30% of rainfed agriculture lands have experienced significant precipitation changes, with important implications for food security. Over recent decades a number of critical conservation areas experienced high population growth concurrent with significant wetting or drying (e.g. the Horn of Africa, Himalaya, Western Ghats, and Sri Lanka), posing challenges not only for human adaptation but also to the protection and sustenance of biodiversity and ecosystem services. Identifying areas of climate and population risk and their overlap with conservation priorities can help to target activities and resources that promote biodiversity and ecosystem services while improving human well-being. PMID:28125659

  12. Extinction debt: a challenge for biodiversity conservation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kuussaari, Mikko; Bommarco, Riccardo; Heikkinen, Risto K; Helm, Aveliina; Krauss, Jochen; Lindborg, Regina; Ockinger, Erik; Pärtel, Meelis; Pino, Joan; Rodà, Ferran; Stefanescu, Constantí; Teder, Tiit; Zobel, Martin; Steffan-Dewenter, Ingolf

    2009-10-01

    Local extinction of species can occur with a substantial delay following habitat loss or degradation. Accumulating evidence suggests that such extinction debts pose a significant but often unrecognized challenge for biodiversity conservation across a wide range of taxa and ecosystems. Species with long generation times and populations near their extinction threshold are most likely to have an extinction debt. However, as long as a species that is predicted to become extinct still persists, there is time for conservation measures such as habitat restoration and landscape management. Standardized long-term monitoring, more high-quality empirical studies on different taxa and ecosystems and further development of analytical methods will help to better quantify extinction debt and protect biodiversity.

  13. Household location choices: implications for biodiversity conservation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peterson, M Nils; Chen, Xiaodong; Liu, Jianguo

    2008-08-01

    Successful conservation efforts require understanding human behaviors that directly affect biodiversity. Choice of household location represents an observable behavior that has direct effects on biodiversity conservation, but no one has examined the sociocultural predictors of this choice relative to its environmental impacts. We conducted a case study of the Teton Valley of Idaho and Wyoming (U.S.A.) that (1) explored relationships between sociodemographic variables, environmental attitudes, and the environmental impact of household location choices, (2) assessed the potential for small household sizes in natural areas to multiply the environmental impacts of household location decisions, and (3) evaluated how length of residency predicted the environmental attitudes of people living in natural areas. We collected sociodemographic data, spatial coordinates, and land-cover information in a survey of 416 households drawn from a random sample of Teton Valley residents (95% compliance rate). Immigrants (respondents not born in the study area) with the lowest education levels and least environmentally oriented attitudes lived in previously established residential areas in disproportionately high numbers, and older and more educated immigrants with the most environmentally oriented attitudes lived in natural areas in disproportionately high numbers. Income was not a significant predictor of household location decisions. Those living in natural areas had more environmental impact per person because of the location and because small households (educated, and potentially growing more environmentally oriented, these patterns are troubling for biodiversity conservation. Our results demonstrate a need for environmentalists to make household location decisions that reflect their environmental attitudes and future research to address how interactions between education level, environmental attitudes, population aging, and household location choices influence biodiversity

  14. Safeguarding saproxylic fungal biodiversity in Apennine beech forest priority habitats

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maggi, Oriana; Lunghini, Dario; Pecoraro, Lorenzo; Sabatini, Francesco Maria; Persiani, Anna Maria

    2015-04-01

    The FAGUS LIFE Project (LIFE11/NAT/IT/135) targets two European priority habitats, i.e. Habitat 9210* Apennine beech forests with Taxus and Ilex, and Habitat 9220* Apennine beech forests with Abies alba, within two National Parks: Cilento, Vallo di Diano and Alburni; Gran Sasso and Monti della Laga. The current limited distribution of the target habitats is also due to the impact of human activities on forest systems, such as harvesting and grazing. The FAGUS project aims at developing and testing management strategies able to integrate the conservation of priority forest habitats (9210* and 9220*) and the sustainable use of forest resources. In order to assess the responses to different management treatments the BACI monitoring design (Before-After, Control-Intervention) has been applied on forest structure and diversity of focus taxa before and after experimental harvesting treatments. Conventional management of Apennine beech forests impacts a wealth of taxonomic groups, such as saproxylic beetles and fungi, which are threatened throughout Europe by the lack of deadwood and of senescing trees, and by the homogeneous structure of managed forests. Deadwood has been denoted as the most important manageable habitat for biodiversity in forests not only for supporting a wide diversity of organisms, but also for playing a prominent role in several ecological processes, creating the basis for the cycling of photosynthetic energy, carbon, and nutrients stored in woody material. Especially fungi can be regarded as key group for understanding and managing biodiversity associated with decaying wood. The before-intervention field sampling was carried out in Autumn 2013 in 33 monitoring plots across the two national Parks. The occurrence at plot level of both Ascomycota and Basidiomycota sporocarps was surveyed. All standing and downed deadwood with a minimum diameter of 10 cm was sampled for sporocarps larger than 1 mm, and information on decay class and fungal morphogroups

  15. Exploring spatial patterns of vulnerability for diverse biodiversity descriptors in regional conservation planning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vimal, Ruppert; Pluvinet, Pascal; Sacca, Céline; Mazagol, Pierre-Olivier; Etlicher, Bernard; Thompson, John D

    2012-03-01

    In this study, we developed a multi-criteria assessment of spatial variability of the vulnerability of three different biodiversity descriptors: sites of high conservation interest by virtue of the presence of rare or remarkable species, extensive areas of high ecological integrity, and landscape diversity in grid cells across an entire region. We assessed vulnerability in relation to (a) direct threats in and around sites to a distance of 2 km associated with intensive agriculture, building and road infrastructure and (b) indirect effects of human population density on a wider scale (50 km). The different combinations of biodiversity and threat indicators allowed us to set differential priorities for biodiversity conservation and assess their spatial variation. For example, with this method we identified sites and grid cells which combined high biodiversity with either high threat values or low threat values for the three different biodiversity indicators. In these two classes the priorities for conservation planning will be different, reduce threat values in the former and restrain any increase in the latter. We also identified low priority sites (low biodiversity with either high or low threats). This procedure thus allows for the integration of a spatial ranking of vulnerability into priority setting for regional conservation planning. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  16. Achieving Aichi Biodiversity Target 11 to improve the performance of protected areas and conserve freshwater biodiversity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Diego Juffe-Bignoli; Ian Harrison; Stuart HM Butchart; Rebecca Flitcroft; Virgilio Hermoso; Harry Jonas; Anna Lukasiewicz; Michele Thieme; Eren Turak; Heather Bingham; James Dalton; William Darwall; Marine Deguignet; Nigel Dudley; Royal Gardner; Jonathan Higgins; Ritesh Kumar; Simon Linke; G Randy Milton; Jamie Pittock; Kevin G Smith; Arnout van Soesbergen

    2016-01-01

    1. The Strategic Plan for Biodiversity (2011–2020), adopted at the 10th meeting of the Conference of the Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity, sets 20 Aichi Biodiversity Targets to be met by 2020 to address biodiversity loss and ensure its sustainable and equitable use. Aichi Biodiversity Target 11 describes what an improved conservation network would look...

  17. A decadal view of biodiversity informatics: challenges and priorities

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-01-01

    Biodiversity informatics plays a central enabling role in the research community's efforts to address scientific conservation and sustainability issues. Great strides have been made in the past decade establishing a framework for sharing data, where taxonomy and systematics has been perceived as the most prominent discipline involved. To some extent this is inevitable, given the use of species names as the pivot around which information is organised. To address the urgent questions around conservation, land-use, environmental change, sustainability, food security and ecosystem services that are facing Governments worldwide, we need to understand how the ecosystem works. So, we need a systems approach to understanding biodiversity that moves significantly beyond taxonomy and species observations. Such an approach needs to look at the whole system to address species interactions, both with their environment and with other species. It is clear that some barriers to progress are sociological, basically persuading people to use the technological solutions that are already available. This is best addressed by developing more effective systems that deliver immediate benefit to the user, hiding the majority of the technology behind simple user interfaces. An infrastructure should be a space in which activities take place and, as such, should be effectively invisible. This community consultation paper positions the role of biodiversity informatics, for the next decade, presenting the actions needed to link the various biodiversity infrastructures invisibly and to facilitate understanding that can support both business and policy-makers. The community considers the goal in biodiversity informatics to be full integration of the biodiversity research community, including citizens’ science, through a commonly-shared, sustainable e-infrastructure across all sub-disciplines that reliably serves science and society alike. PMID:23587026

  18. A decadal view of biodiversity informatics: challenges and priorities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hardisty, Alex; Roberts, Dave; Addink, Wouter; Aelterman, Bart; Agosti, Donat; Amaral-Zettler, Linda; Ariño, Arturo H; Arvanitidis, Christos; Backeljau, Thierry; Bailly, Nicolas; Belbin, Lee; Berendsohn, Walter; Bertrand, Nic; Caithness, Neil; Campbell, David; Cochrane, Guy; Conruyt, Noël; Culham, Alastair; Damgaard, Christian; Davies, Neil; Fady, Bruno; Faulwetter, Sarah; Feest, Alan; Field, Dawn; Garnier, Eric; Geser, Guntram; Gilbert, Jack; Grosche; Grosser, David; Hardisty, Alex; Herbinet, Bénédicte; Hobern, Donald; Jones, Andrew; de Jong, Yde; King, David; Knapp, Sandra; Koivula, Hanna; Los, Wouter; Meyer, Chris; Morris, Robert A; Morrison, Norman; Morse, David; Obst, Matthias; Pafilis, Evagelos; Page, Larry M; Page, Roderic; Pape, Thomas; Parr, Cynthia; Paton, Alan; Patterson, David; Paymal, Elisabeth; Penev, Lyubomir; Pollet, Marc; Pyle, Richard; von Raab-Straube, Eckhard; Robert, Vincent; Roberts, Dave; Robertson, Tim; Rovellotti, Olivier; Saarenmaa, Hannu; Schalk, Peter; Schaminee, Joop; Schofield, Paul; Sier, Andy; Sierra, Soraya; Smith, Vince; van Spronsen, Edwin; Thornton-Wood, Simon; van Tienderen, Peter; van Tol, Jan; Tuama, Éamonn Ó; Uetz, Peter; Vaas, Lea; Vignes Lebbe, Régine; Vision, Todd; Vu, Duong; De Wever, Aaike; White, Richard; Willis, Kathy; Young, Fiona

    2013-04-15

    Biodiversity informatics plays a central enabling role in the research community's efforts to address scientific conservation and sustainability issues. Great strides have been made in the past decade establishing a framework for sharing data, where taxonomy and systematics has been perceived as the most prominent discipline involved. To some extent this is inevitable, given the use of species names as the pivot around which information is organised. To address the urgent questions around conservation, land-use, environmental change, sustainability, food security and ecosystem services that are facing Governments worldwide, we need to understand how the ecosystem works. So, we need a systems approach to understanding biodiversity that moves significantly beyond taxonomy and species observations. Such an approach needs to look at the whole system to address species interactions, both with their environment and with other species.It is clear that some barriers to progress are sociological, basically persuading people to use the technological solutions that are already available. This is best addressed by developing more effective systems that deliver immediate benefit to the user, hiding the majority of the technology behind simple user interfaces. An infrastructure should be a space in which activities take place and, as such, should be effectively invisible.This community consultation paper positions the role of biodiversity informatics, for the next decade, presenting the actions needed to link the various biodiversity infrastructures invisibly and to facilitate understanding that can support both business and policy-makers. The community considers the goal in biodiversity informatics to be full integration of the biodiversity research community, including citizens' science, through a commonly-shared, sustainable e-infrastructure across all sub-disciplines that reliably serves science and society alike.

  19. Core issues in the economics of biodiversity conservation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tisdell, Clement A

    2011-02-01

    Economic evaluations are essential for assessing the desirability of biodiversity conservation. This article highlights significant advances in theories and methods of economic evaluation and their relevance and limitations as a guide to biodiversity conservation; considers the implications of the phylogenetic similarity principle for the survival of species; discusses consequences of the Noah's Ark problem for selecting features of biodiversity to be saved; analyzes the extent to which the precautionary principle can be rationally used to support the conservation of biodiversity; explores the impact of market extensions, market and other institutional failures, and globalization on biodiversity loss; examines the relationship between the rate of interest and biodiversity depletion; and investigates the implications of intergenerational equity for biodiversity conservation. The consequences of changes in biodiversity for sustainable development are given particular attention. © 2011 New York Academy of Sciences.

  20. Does conservation on farmland contribute to halting the biodiversity decline?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kleijn, David; Rundlöf, Maj; Scheper, Jeroen; Smith, Henrik G; Tscharntke, Teja

    2011-09-01

    Biodiversity continues to decline, despite the implementation of international conservation conventions and measures. To counteract biodiversity loss, it is pivotal to know how conservation actions affect biodiversity trends. Focussing on European farmland species, we review what is known about the impact of conservation initiatives on biodiversity. We argue that the effects of conservation are a function of conservation-induced ecological contrast, agricultural land-use intensity and landscape context. We find that, to date, only a few studies have linked local conservation effects to national biodiversity trends. It is therefore unknown how the extensive European agri-environmental budget for conservation on farmland contributes to the policy objectives to halt biodiversity decline. Based on this review, we identify new research directions addressing this important knowledge gap. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  1. Phylogenetically-informed priorities for amphibian conservation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Isaac, Nick J B; Redding, David W; Meredith, Helen M; Safi, Kamran

    2012-01-01

    The amphibian decline and extinction crisis demands urgent action to prevent further large numbers of species extinctions. Lists of priority species for conservation, based on a combination of species' threat status and unique contribution to phylogenetic diversity, are one tool for the direction and catalyzation of conservation action. We describe the construction of a near-complete species-level phylogeny of 5713 amphibian species, which we use to create a list of evolutionarily distinct and globally endangered species (EDGE list) for the entire class Amphibia. We present sensitivity analyses to test the robustness of our priority list to uncertainty in species' phylogenetic position and threat status. We find that both sources of uncertainty have only minor impacts on our 'top 100' list of priority species, indicating the robustness of the approach. By contrast, our analyses suggest that a large number of Data Deficient species are likely to be high priorities for conservation action from the perspective of their contribution to the evolutionary history.

  2. Phylogenetically-informed priorities for amphibian conservation.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nick J B Isaac

    Full Text Available The amphibian decline and extinction crisis demands urgent action to prevent further large numbers of species extinctions. Lists of priority species for conservation, based on a combination of species' threat status and unique contribution to phylogenetic diversity, are one tool for the direction and catalyzation of conservation action. We describe the construction of a near-complete species-level phylogeny of 5713 amphibian species, which we use to create a list of evolutionarily distinct and globally endangered species (EDGE list for the entire class Amphibia. We present sensitivity analyses to test the robustness of our priority list to uncertainty in species' phylogenetic position and threat status. We find that both sources of uncertainty have only minor impacts on our 'top 100' list of priority species, indicating the robustness of the approach. By contrast, our analyses suggest that a large number of Data Deficient species are likely to be high priorities for conservation action from the perspective of their contribution to the evolutionary history.

  3. Large expansion of oil industry in the Ecuadorian Amazon: biodiversity vulnerability and conservation alternatives.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lessmann, Janeth; Fajardo, Javier; Muñoz, Jesús; Bonaccorso, Elisa

    2016-07-01

    Ecuador will experience a significant expansion of the oil industry in its Amazonian region, one of the most biodiverse areas of the world. In view of the changes that are about to come, we explore the conflicts between oil extraction interests and biodiversity protection and apply systematic conservation planning to identify priority areas that should be protected in different oil exploitation scenarios. First, we quantified the current extent of oil blocks and protected zones and their overlap with two biodiversity indicators: 25 ecosystems and 745 species (whose distributions were estimated via species distribution models). With the new scheme of oil exploitation, oil blocks cover 68% (68,196 km(2)) of the Ecuadorian Amazon; half of it occupied by new blocks open for bids in the southern Amazon. This region is especially vulnerable to biodiversity losses, because peaks of species diversity, 19 ecosystems, and a third of its protected zones coincide spatially with oil blocks. Under these circumstances, we used Marxan software to identify priority areas for conservation outside oil blocks, but their coverage was insufficient to completely represent biodiversity. Instead, priority areas that include southern oil blocks provide a higher representation of biodiversity indicators. Therefore, preserving the southern Amazon becomes essential to improve the protection of Amazonian biodiversity in Ecuador, and avoiding oil exploitation in these areas (33% of the extent of southern oil blocks) should be considered a conservation alternative. Also, it is highly recommended to improve current oil exploitation technology to reduce environmental impacts in the region, especially within five oil blocks that we identified as most valuable for the conservation of biodiversity. The application of these and other recommendations depends heavily on the Ecuadorian government, which needs to find a better balance between the use of the Amazon resources and biodiversity conservation.

  4. Does taxonomic diversity in indicator groups influence their effectiveness in identifying priority areas for species conservation?

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bladt, Jesper Stentoft; Larsen, Frank Wugt; Rahbek, Carsten

    2008-01-01

    The identification of priority areas for biodiversity conservation is a cornerstone of systematic conservation planning. However, biodiversity, or even the distribution of all species, cannot be directly quantified, due to the inherent complexity of natural systems. Species indicator groups may...... serve as important tools for the identification of priority areas for conservation. Yet, it is unclear which factors make certain indicator groups perform better than others. In this study, using data on the Danish distribution of 847 species of plants, vertebrates and insects, we assessed whether...... the taxonomic diversity in species indicator groups influence their effectiveness in the identification of priority areas for species conservation. We tested whether indicator groups comprising a higher taxonomic diversity (i.e. indicator groups consisting of species from many different taxonomic groups...

  5. Mainstreaming biodiversity: conservation for the 21st century

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kent Hubbard Redford

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Insufficient focused attention has been paid by the conservation community to conservation of biodiversity outside of protected areas. Biodiversity mainstreaming addresses this gap in global conservation practice by embedding biodiversity considerations into policies, strategies and practices of key public and private actors that impact or rely on biodiversity, so that it is conserved, and sustainably used, both locally and globally (Huntley and Redford 2014. Biodiversity mainstreaming is designed to change those policies and practices that influence land uses outside of protected areas as well as to change economic and development decision-making by demonstrating the importance of conserving biodiversity for achieving development outcomes. The practice of mainstreaming is tied to implementation of the Convention on Biological Diversity and is practiced with billions of dollars of investment by development agencies, national government agencies, and the Global Environment Facility (GEF and its implementing organizations as well as other donors. It is essential for the long-term survival of biodiversity inside and outside protected areas. However, it is virtually unheard of in the main conservation science field. This must change so as to bring careful documentation, analysis, monitoring, publishing and improvement of practices – all things that conservation science should provide as partners to practitioners of biodiversity mainstreaming. The situation is ripe for informed coordination and consolidation and creation of a science-driven field of biodiversity mainstreaming.

  6. Conserving Earth's Biodiversity. [CD-ROM and] Instructor's Manual.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2000

    This CD-ROM is designed as an interactive learning tool to support teaching in highly interdisciplinary fields such as conservation of biodiversity. Topics introduced in the software include the impact of humans on natural landscapes, threats to biodiversity, methods and theories of conservation biology, environmental laws, and relevant economic…

  7. Participation in Biodiversity Conservation: Motivations and Barriers of Australian Landholders

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moon, Katie; Cocklin, Chris

    2011-01-01

    Biodiversity conservation programs that appeal to landholders' motivations and minimise their barriers to participation may result in both increased uptake rates and improved ecological outcomes. To understand their motivations and barriers to conserve biodiversity, qualitative interviews were conducted with 45 landholders who had participated in…

  8. Exclusion of agricultural lands in spatial conservation prioritization strategies: consequences for biodiversity and ecosystem service representation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Durán, América P; Duffy, James P; Gaston, Kevin J

    2014-10-07

    Agroecosystems have traditionally been considered incompatible with biological conservation goals, and often been excluded from spatial conservation prioritization strategies. The consequences for the representativeness of identified priority areas have been little explored. Here, we evaluate these for biodiversity and carbon storage representation when agricultural land areas are excluded from a spatial prioritization strategy for South America. Comparing different prioritization approaches, we also assess how the spatial overlap of priority areas changes. The exclusion of agricultural lands was detrimental to biodiversity representation, indicating that priority areas for agricultural production overlap with areas of relatively high occurrence of species. By contrast, exclusion of agricultural lands benefits representation of carbon storage within priority areas, as lands of high value for agriculture and carbon storage overlap little. When agricultural lands were included and equally weighted with biodiversity and carbon storage, a balanced representation resulted. Our findings suggest that with appropriate management, South American agroecosystems can significantly contribute to biodiversity conservation. © 2014 The Author(s) Published by the Royal Society. All rights reserved.

  9. Conservation Priority Index for Estuarine Fish (COPIEF)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Branco, Paulo; Costa, José Lino; Raposo de Almeida, Pedro

    2008-12-01

    Public awareness regarding environmental issues has increased in recent decades. The increasing number of impact assessment studies, management and conservation plans, as well as ecological monitoring studies, demand new and more efficient techniques. Indices are an important tool to aid biologists in these studies and should allow an easier comprehension of the data by managers, decision-makers and the general public. This study presents the first multi-metrical index able to establish a hierarchical ordination of the conservation priority of the estuarine fish species using 72 species from 16 estuarine systems (W and S coasts of Portugal). The index is composed of 10 metrics, comprising species life traits, distribution and population trends. The information needed to score each metric was gathered from the published literature and the index validation was done by external means. This methodology allowed the definition of those fish species most in need of conservation planning, and those less prone to extinction in Portuguese estuarine systems. The proposed index fills a gap in our knowledge and provides a useful tool to the scientific community and to the decision-makers, being a breakthrough in the field of conservation planning of estuarine fish species.

  10. Integrating ethnobiological knowledge into biodiversity conservation in the Eastern Himalayas.

    Science.gov (United States)

    O'Neill, Alexander R; Badola, Hemant K; Dhyani, Pitamber P; Rana, Santosh K

    2017-03-29

    Biocultural knowledge provides valuable insight into ecological processes, and can guide conservation practitioners in local contexts. In many regions, however, such knowledge is underutilized due to its often-fragmented record in disparate sources. In this article, we review and apply ethnobiological knowledge to biodiversity conservation in the Eastern Himalayas. Using Sikkim, India as a case study, we: (i) traced the history and trends of ethnobiological documentation; (ii) identified priority species and habitat types; and, (iii) analyzed within and among community differences pertaining to species use and management. Our results revealed that Sikkim is a biocultural hotspot, where six ethnic communities and 1128 species engage in biocultural relationships. Since the mid-1800s, the number of ethnobiological publications from Sikkim has exponentially increased; however, our results also indicate that much of this knowledge is both unwritten and partitioned within an aging, gendered, and caste or ethnic group-specific stratum of society. Reviewed species were primarily wild or wild cultivated, native to subtropical and temperate forests, and pend IUCN Red List of Threatened Species assessment. Our results demonstrate the value of engaging local knowledge holders as active participants in conservation, and suggest the need for further ethnobiological research in the Eastern Himalayas. Our interdisciplinary approach, which included rank indices and geospatial modelling, can help integrate diverse datasets into evidence-based policy.

  11. Rapid Assessment of Ecosystem Service Co-Benefits of Biodiversity Priority Areas in Madagascar.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rachel A Neugarten

    Full Text Available The importance of ecosystems for supporting human well-being is increasingly recognized by both the conservation and development sectors. Our ability to conserve ecosystems that people rely on is often limited by a lack of spatially explicit data on the location and distribution of ecosystem services (ES, the benefits provided by nature to people. Thus there is a need to map ES to guide conservation investments, to ensure these co-benefits are maintained. To target conservation investments most effectively, ES assessments must be rigorous enough to support conservation planning, rapid enough to respond to decision-making timelines, and often must rely on existing data. We developed a framework for rapid spatial assessment of ES that relies on expert and stakeholder consultation, available data, and spatial analyses in order to rapidly identify sites providing multiple benefits. We applied the framework in Madagascar, a country with globally significant biodiversity and a high level of human dependence on ecosystems. Our objective was to identify the ES co-benefits of biodiversity priority areas in order to guide the investment strategy of a global conservation fund. We assessed key provisioning (fisheries, hunting and non-timber forest products, and water for domestic use, agriculture, and hydropower, regulating (climate mitigation, flood risk reduction and coastal protection, and cultural (nature tourism ES. We also conducted multi-criteria analyses to identify sites providing multiple benefits. While our approach has limitations, including the reliance on proximity-based indicators for several ES, the results were useful for targeting conservation investments by the Critical Ecosystem Partnership Fund (CEPF. Because our approach relies on available data, standardized methods for linking ES provision to ES use, and expert validation, it has the potential to quickly guide conservation planning and investment decisions in other data-poor regions.

  12. Rapid Assessment of Ecosystem Service Co-Benefits of Biodiversity Priority Areas in Madagascar

    Science.gov (United States)

    Andriamaro, Luciano; Cano, Carlos Andres; Grantham, Hedley S.; Hole, David; Juhn, Daniel; McKinnon, Madeleine; Rasolohery, Andriambolantsoa; Steininger, Marc; Wright, Timothy Max

    2016-01-01

    The importance of ecosystems for supporting human well-being is increasingly recognized by both the conservation and development sectors. Our ability to conserve ecosystems that people rely on is often limited by a lack of spatially explicit data on the location and distribution of ecosystem services (ES), the benefits provided by nature to people. Thus there is a need to map ES to guide conservation investments, to ensure these co-benefits are maintained. To target conservation investments most effectively, ES assessments must be rigorous enough to support conservation planning, rapid enough to respond to decision-making timelines, and often must rely on existing data. We developed a framework for rapid spatial assessment of ES that relies on expert and stakeholder consultation, available data, and spatial analyses in order to rapidly identify sites providing multiple benefits. We applied the framework in Madagascar, a country with globally significant biodiversity and a high level of human dependence on ecosystems. Our objective was to identify the ES co-benefits of biodiversity priority areas in order to guide the investment strategy of a global conservation fund. We assessed key provisioning (fisheries, hunting and non-timber forest products, and water for domestic use, agriculture, and hydropower), regulating (climate mitigation, flood risk reduction and coastal protection), and cultural (nature tourism) ES. We also conducted multi-criteria analyses to identify sites providing multiple benefits. While our approach has limitations, including the reliance on proximity-based indicators for several ES, the results were useful for targeting conservation investments by the Critical Ecosystem Partnership Fund (CEPF). Because our approach relies on available data, standardized methods for linking ES provision to ES use, and expert validation, it has the potential to quickly guide conservation planning and investment decisions in other data-poor regions. PMID:28006005

  13. Biodiversity conservation in a changing climate: a review of threats and implications for conservation planning in Myanmar.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rao, Madhu; Saw Htun; Platt, Steven G; Tizard, Robert; Poole, Colin; Than Myint; Watson, James E M

    2013-11-01

    High levels of species richness and endemism make Myanmar a regional priority for conservation. However, decades of economic and political sanctions have resulted in low conservation investment to effectively tackle threats to biodiversity. Recent sweeping political reforms have placed Myanmar on the fast track to economic development-the expectation is increased economic investments focused on the exploitation of the country's rich, and relatively intact, natural resources. Within a context of weak regulatory capacity and inadequate environmental safeguards, rapid economic development is likely to have far-reaching negative implications for already threatened biodiversity and natural-resource-dependent human communities. Climate change will further exacerbate prevailing threats given Myanmar's high exposure and vulnerability. The aim of this review is to examine the implications of increased economic growth and a changing climate within the larger context of biodiversity conservation in Myanmar. We summarize conservation challenges, assess direct climatological impacts on biodiversity and conclude with recommendations for long-term adaptation approaches for biodiversity conservation.

  14. Orchid conservation in the biodiversity hotspot of southwestern China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Qiang; Chen, Jin; Corlett, Richard T; Fan, XuLi; Yu, DongLi; Yang, HongPei; Gao, JiangYun

    2015-12-01

    Xishuangbanna is on the northern margins of tropical Asia in southwestern China and has the largest area of tropical forest remaining in the country. It is in the Indo-Burma hotspot and contains 16% of China's vascular flora in biodiversity. To understand the effects of land-use change and collection on orchid species diversity and determine protection priorities, we conducted systematic field surveys, observed markets, interviewed orchid collectors, and then determined the conservation status of all orchids. We identified 426 orchid species in 115 genera in Xishuangbanna: 31% of all orchid species that occur in China. Species richness was highest at 1000-1200 m elevation. Three orchid species were assessed as possibly extinct in the wild, 15 as critically endangered, 82 as endangered, 124 as vulnerable, 186 as least concern, and 16 as data deficient. Declines over 20 years in harvested species suggested over-collection was the major threat, and utility value (i.e., medicinal or ornamental value) was significantly related to endangerment. Expansion of rubber tree plantations was less of a threat to orchids than to other taxa because only 75 orchid species (17.6%) occurred below the 1000-m-elevation ceiling for rubber cultivation, and most of these (46) occurred in nature reserves. However, climate change is projected to lift this ceiling to around 1300 m by 2050, and the limited area at higher elevations reduces the potential for upslope range expansion. The Xishuangbanna Tropical Botanical Garden is committed to achieving zero plant extinctions in Xishuangbanna, and orchids are a high priority. Appropriate in and ex situ conservation strategies, including new protected areas and seed banking, have been developed for every threatened orchid species and are being implemented. © 2015 Society for Conservation Biology.

  15. Sustaining America's Aquatic Biodiversity. Aquatic Insect Biodiversity and Conservation

    OpenAIRE

    Voshell, J. Reese

    2005-01-01

    Provides a description of the structure and appearance of aquatic insects, how they live and reproduce, the habitats they live in, how to collect them, why they are of importance, and threats to their survival; document also includes a brief illustrated summary of the eight major groups of aquatic insects and web links to more information. Part of a 12 part series on sustaining aquatic biodiversity in America.

  16. Engaging Pupils in Decision-Making about Biodiversity Conservation Issues

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grace, Marcus; Byrne, Jenny

    2010-01-01

    Our pupils' generation will eventually have the daunting responsibility of making decisions about local and global biodiversity. School provides an early opportunity for them to enter into formal discussion about the science and values associated with biodiversity conservation; but the crowded curriculum offers little time for such activities.…

  17. From genes to landscapes: conserving biodiversity at multiple scales.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sally. Duncan

    2000-01-01

    Biodiversity has at last become a familiar term outside of scientific circles. Ways of measuring it and mapping it are advancing and becoming more complex, but ways of deciding how to conserve it remain mixed at best, and the resources available to manage dimishing biodiversity are themselves scarce. One significant problem is that policy decisions are frequently at...

  18. Effects of threat management interactions on conservation priorities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Auerbach, Nancy A; Wilson, Kerrie A; Tulloch, Ayesha I T; Rhodes, Jonathan R; Hanson, Jeffrey O; Possingham, Hugh P

    2015-12-01

    Decisions need to be made about which biodiversity management actions are undertaken to mitigate threats and about where these actions are implemented. However, management actions can interact; that is, the cost, benefit, and feasibility of one action can change when another action is undertaken. There is little guidance on how to explicitly and efficiently prioritize management for multiple threats, including deciding where to act. Integrated management could focus on one management action to abate a dominant threat or on a strategy comprising multiple actions to abate multiple threats. Furthermore management could be undertaken at sites that are in close proximity to reduce costs. We used cost-effectiveness analysis to prioritize investments in fire management, controlling invasive predators, and reducing grazing pressure in a bio-diverse region of southeastern Queensland, Australia. We compared outcomes of 5 management approaches based on different assumptions about interactions and quantified how investment needed, benefits expected, and the locations prioritized for implementation differed when interactions were taken into account. Managing for interactions altered decisions about where to invest and in which actions to invest and had the potential to deliver increased investment efficiency. Differences in high priority locations and actions were greatest between the approaches when we made different assumptions about how management actions deliver benefits through threat abatement: either all threats must be managed to conserve species or only one management action may be required. Threatened species management that does not consider interactions between actions may result in misplaced investments or misguided expectations of the effort required to mitigate threats to species. © 2015 The Authors. Conservation Biology published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc., on behalf of Society for Conservation Biology.

  19. International Center for Himalayan Biodiversity (ICHB): Conserving Himalayan Biodiversity--A Global Responsibility

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ram Bhandari

    2006-01-01

    Biodiversity is a global endowment of nature. Conservation of biodiversity includes all species of plants, animals and other organisms, the range of genetic stocks within each species, and ecosystem diversity. Food, many types of medicine and industrial products are provided by the biological resources that are the basis of life on Earth. The value of the Earth’s...

  20. Reductions in global biodiversity loss predicted from conservation spending

    Science.gov (United States)

    Waldron, Anthony; Miller, Daniel C.; Redding, Dave; Mooers, Arne; Kuhn, Tyler S.; Nibbelink, Nate; Roberts, J. Timmons; Tobias, Joseph A.; Gittleman, John L.

    2017-11-01

    Halting global biodiversity loss is central to the Convention on Biological Diversity and United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, but success to date has been very limited. A critical determinant of success in achieving these goals is the financing that is committed to maintaining biodiversity; however, financing decisions are hindered by considerable uncertainty over the likely impact of any conservation investment. For greater effectiveness, we need an evidence-based model that shows how conservation spending quantitatively reduces the rate of biodiversity loss. Here we demonstrate such a model, and empirically quantify how conservation investment between 1996 and 2008 reduced biodiversity loss in 109 countries (signatories to the Convention on Biological Diversity and Sustainable Development Goals), by a median average of 29% per country. We also show that biodiversity changes in signatory countries can be predicted with high accuracy, using a dual model that balances the effects of conservation investment against those of economic, agricultural and population growth (human development pressures). Decision-makers can use this model to forecast the improvement that any proposed biodiversity budget would achieve under various scenarios of human development pressure, and then compare these forecasts to any chosen policy target. We find that the impact of spending decreases as human development pressures grow, which implies that funding may need to increase over time. The model offers a flexible tool for balancing the Sustainable Development Goals of human development and maintaining biodiversity, by predicting the dynamic changes in conservation finance that will be needed as human development proceeds.

  1. Reductions in global biodiversity loss predicted from conservation spending.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Waldron, Anthony; Miller, Daniel C; Redding, Dave; Mooers, Arne; Kuhn, Tyler S; Nibbelink, Nate; Roberts, J Timmons; Tobias, Joseph A; Gittleman, John L

    2017-11-16

    Halting global biodiversity loss is central to the Convention on Biological Diversity and United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, but success to date has been very limited. A critical determinant of success in achieving these goals is the financing that is committed to maintaining biodiversity; however, financing decisions are hindered by considerable uncertainty over the likely impact of any conservation investment. For greater effectiveness, we need an evidence-based model that shows how conservation spending quantitatively reduces the rate of biodiversity loss. Here we demonstrate such a model, and empirically quantify how conservation investment reduced biodiversity loss in 109 countries (signatories to the Convention on Biological Diversity and Sustainable Development Goals), by a median average of 29% per country between 1996 and 2008. We also show that biodiversity changes in signatory countries can be predicted with high accuracy, using a dual model that balances the effects of conservation investment against those of economic, agricultural and population growth (human development pressures). Decision-makers can use this model to forecast the improvement that any proposed biodiversity budget would achieve under various scenarios of human development pressure, and then compare these forecasts to any chosen policy target. We find that the impact of spending decreases as human development pressures grow, which implies that funding may need to increase over time. The model offers a flexible tool for balancing the Sustainable Development Goals of human development and maintaining biodiversity, by predicting the dynamic changes in conservation finance that will be needed as human development proceeds.

  2. Improving the key biodiversity areas approach for effective conservation planning

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Knight, AT

    2007-03-01

    Full Text Available The key biodiversity areas (KBA) approach aims to identify globally important areas for species conservation. Although a similar methodology has been used successfully to identify important Bird Areas, the authors have identified five limitations...

  3. Identification of areas in Brazil that optimize conservation of forest carbon, jaguars, and biodiversity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    De Barros, Alan E; MacDonald, Ewan A; Matsumoto, Marcelo H; Paula, Rogério C; Nijhawan, Sahil; Malhi, Y; MacDonald, David W

    2014-04-01

    A major question in global environmental policy is whether schemes to reduce carbon pollution through forest management, such as Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Degradation (REDD+), can also benefit biodiversity conservation in tropical countries. We identified municipalities in Brazil that are priorities for reducing rates of deforestation and thus preserving carbon stocks that are also conservation targets for the endangered jaguar (Panthera onca) and biodiversity in general. Preliminary statistical analysis showed that municipalities with high biodiversity were positively associated with high forest carbon stocks. We used a multicriteria decision analysis to identify municipalities that offered the best opportunities for the conservation of forest carbon stocks and biodiversity conservation under a range of scenarios with different rates of deforestation and carbon values. We further categorized these areas by their representativeness of the entire country (through measures such as percent forest cover) and an indirect measure of cost (number of municipalities). The municipalities that offered optimal co-benefits for forest carbon stocks and conservation were termed REDDspots (n = 159), and their spatial distribution was compared with the distribution of current and proposed REDD projects (n = 135). We defined REDDspots as the municipalities that offer the best opportunities for co-benefits between the conservation of forest carbon stocks, jaguars, and other wildlife. These areas coincided in 25% (n = 40) of municipalities. We identified a further 95 municipalities that may have the greatest potential to develop additional REDD+ projects while also targeting biodiversity conservation. We concluded that REDD+ strategies could be an efficient tool for biodiversity conservation in key locations, especially in Amazonian and Atlantic Forest biomes. ©2013 Society for Conservation Biology.

  4. Global mammal distributions, biodiversity hotspots, and conservation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ceballos, Gerardo; Ehrlich, Paul R

    2006-12-19

    Hotspots, which have played a central role in the selection of sites for reserves, require careful rethinking. We carried out a global examination of distributions of all nonmarine mammals to determine patterns of species richness, endemism, and endangerment, and to evaluate the degree of congruence among hotspots of these three measures of diversity in mammals. We then compare congruence of hotspots in two animal groups (mammals and birds) to assess the generality of these patterns. We defined hotspots as the richest 2.5% of cells in a global equal-area grid comparable to 1 degrees latitude x 1 degrees longitude. Hotspots of species richness, "endemism," and extinction threat were noncongruent. Only 1% of cells and 16% of species were common to the three types of mammalian hotspots. Congruence increased with increases in both the geographic scope of the analysis and the percentage of cells defined as being hotspots. The within-mammal hotspot noncongruence was similar to the pattern recently found for birds. Thus, assigning global conservation priorities based on hotspots is at best a limited strategy.

  5. Conservation of biodiversity in mountain ecosystems -- At a glance

    OpenAIRE

    MacKinnon, K.

    2002-01-01

    Metadata only record Mountains are especially important for biodiversity conservation since many harbor unique assemblages of plants and animals, including high levels of endemic species. Mountain biodiversity and natural habitats bestow multiple ecosystem, soil conservation, and watershed benefits. Mountains are often centers of endemism, where species are prevalent in or peculiar to a particular region, and Pleistocene refuges, which are hypothesized to have high levels of diversity wher...

  6. Group Decisions in Biodiversity Conservation: Implications from Game Theory

    OpenAIRE

    Frank, David M.; Sarkar, Sahotra

    2010-01-01

    Background Decision analysis and game theory [1], [2] have proved useful tools in various biodiversity conservation planning and modeling contexts [3]?[5]. This paper shows how game theory may be used to inform group decisions in biodiversity conservation scenarios by modeling conflicts between stakeholders to identify Pareto?inefficient Nash equilibria. These are cases in which each agent pursuing individual self?interest leads to a worse outcome for all, relative to other feasible outcomes....

  7. MAKING DECISIONS ABOUT BIODIVERSITY CONSERVATION: A STUDY IN PRE-SERVICE TEACHER EDUCATION

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Camila S. Miani

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available Biodiversity conservation is a current environmental concern that reveals the competing priorities of economic development and environmental preservation. These issues are currently being debated at various levels of society, and decisions are made based not only on scientific knowledge but also on opinions and values. Among the reasons commonly used to justify current environmental demands for biodiversity conservation, Sarkar (2005 has identified three “flawed arguments” to be avoided. Because the discussion of biodiversity conservation is a current demand, it should also be addressed in the field of education. Biology teachers should be prepared to engage their students in discussion about all aspects of biodiversity conservation. In light of the need to train professionals who are capable of addressing complex issues such as this, the following may be asked: What do biology students consider when making decisions about the use and conservation of biodiversity? Do the flawed arguments identified by Sarkar (2005 factor into their reasoning? This research analyzes reports produced following a teaching activity known as “decision making.” The results reveal not only students’ concern for environmental issues, particularly regarding water resources, but also the presence of two of Sarkar’s flawed arguments. The limits of students’ knowledge of the subject also become evident.

  8. Economic prosperity, biodiversity conservation, and the environmental Kuznets curve

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mills, Julianne H.; Waite, Thomas A.

    2009-01-01

    Many conservationists contend that economic growth and biodiversity conservation are incompatible goals. Some economists contest this viewpoint, arguing that wealthier countries have the luxury of investing more heavily in efforts to conserve biodiversity. Under this assumption, we expect a U-shaped relationship between per capita wealth and proportion of species conserved. We test this environmental Kuznets curve (EKC) using estimates of per capita income and deforestation rates (index of biodiversity threat) for 35 tropical countries. A prior analysis [Dietz, S., Adger, W.N., 2003. Economic growth, biodiversity loss and conservation effort. Journal of Environmental Management, 68:23-35] using conventional regression techniques failed to provide any support for the parabolic relationship predicted by the EKC hypothesis. Here, we introduce the use of quantile regression and spatial filtering to reanalyze this data, addressing issues of heteroskedasticity and spatial autocorrelation. We note that preliminary analysis using these methods provides some initial evidence for an EKC. However, a series of panel analyses with country-specific dummy variables eliminated or even reversed much of this support. A closer examination of conservation practices and environmental indicators within the countries, particularly those countries that drove our initial support, suggests that wealth is not a reliable indicator of improved conservation practice. Our findings indicate that an EKC for biodiversity is overly simplistic and further exploration is required to fully understand the mechanisms by which income affects biodiversity. (author)

  9. Economic prosperity, biodiversity conservation, and the environmental Kuznets curve

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Mills, Julianne H.; Waite, Thomas A. [Department of Evolution, Ecology and Organismal Biology, Ohio State University, 300 Aronoff Laboratory, 318 W. 12th Ave., Columbus, OH, 43210 (United States)

    2009-05-15

    Many conservationists contend that economic growth and biodiversity conservation are incompatible goals. Some economists contest this viewpoint, arguing that wealthier countries have the luxury of investing more heavily in efforts to conserve biodiversity. Under this assumption, we expect a U-shaped relationship between per capita wealth and proportion of species conserved. We test this environmental Kuznets curve (EKC) using estimates of per capita income and deforestation rates (index of biodiversity threat) for 35 tropical countries. A prior analysis [Dietz, S., Adger, W.N., 2003. Economic growth, biodiversity loss and conservation effort. Journal of Environmental Management, 68:23-35] using conventional regression techniques failed to provide any support for the parabolic relationship predicted by the EKC hypothesis. Here, we introduce the use of quantile regression and spatial filtering to reanalyze this data, addressing issues of heteroskedasticity and spatial autocorrelation. We note that preliminary analysis using these methods provides some initial evidence for an EKC. However, a series of panel analyses with country-specific dummy variables eliminated or even reversed much of this support. A closer examination of conservation practices and environmental indicators within the countries, particularly those countries that drove our initial support, suggests that wealth is not a reliable indicator of improved conservation practice. Our findings indicate that an EKC for biodiversity is overly simplistic and further exploration is required to fully understand the mechanisms by which income affects biodiversity. (author)

  10. Setting practical conservation priorities for birds in the Western Andes of Colombia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ocampo-Peñuela, Natalia; Pimm, Stuart L

    2014-10-01

    We aspired to set conservation priorities in ways that lead to direct conservation actions. Very large-scale strategic mapping leads to familiar conservation priorities exemplified by biodiversity hotspots. In contrast, tactical conservation actions unfold on much smaller geographical extents and they need to reflect the habitat loss and fragmentation that have sharply restricted where species now live. Our aspirations for direct, practical actions were demanding. First, we identified the global, strategic conservation priorities and then downscaled to practical local actions within the selected priorities. In doing this, we recognized the limitations of incomplete information. We started such a process in Colombia and used the results presented here to implement reforestation of degraded land to prevent the isolation of a large area of cloud forest. We used existing range maps of 171 bird species to identify priority conservation areas that would conserve the greatest number of species at risk in Colombia. By at risk species, we mean those that are endemic and have small ranges. The Western Andes had the highest concentrations of such species-100 in total-but the lowest densities of national parks. We then adjusted the priorities for this region by refining these species ranges by selecting only areas of suitable elevation and remaining habitat. The estimated ranges of these species shrank by 18-100% after accounting for habitat and suitable elevation. Setting conservation priorities on the basis of currently available range maps excluded priority areas in the Western Andes and, by extension, likely elsewhere and for other taxa. By incorporating detailed maps of remaining natural habitats, we made practical recommendations for conservation actions. One recommendation was to restore forest connections to a patch of cloud forest about to become isolated from the main Andes. © 2014 Society for Conservation Biology.

  11. Governance factors in the identification of global conservation priorities for mammals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eklund, Johanna; Arponen, Anni; Visconti, Piero; Cabeza, Mar

    2011-09-27

    Global conservation priorities have often been identified based on the combination of species richness and threat information. With the development of the field of systematic conservation planning, more attention has been given to conservation costs. This leads to prioritizing developing countries, where costs are generally low and biodiversity is high. But many of these countries have poor governance, which may result in ineffective conservation or in larger costs than initially expected. We explore how the consideration of governance affects the selection of global conservation priorities for the world's mammals in a complementarity-based conservation prioritization. We use data on Control of Corruption (Worldwide Governance Indicators project) as an indicator of governance effectiveness, and gross domestic product per capita as an indicator of cost. We show that, while core areas with high levels of endemism are always selected as important regardless of governance and cost values, there are clear regional differences in selected sites when biodiversity, cost or governance are taken into account separately. Overall, the analysis supports the concentration of conservation efforts in most of the regions generally considered of high priority, but stresses the need for different conservation approaches in different continents owing to spatial patterns of governance and economic development.

  12. Factoring economic costs into conservation planning may not improve agreement over priorities for protection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Armsworth, Paul R; Jackson, Heather B; Cho, Seong-Hoon; Clark, Melissa; Fargione, Joseph E; Iacona, Gwenllian D; Kim, Taeyoung; Larson, Eric R; Minney, Thomas; Sutton, Nathan A

    2017-12-21

    Conservation organizations must redouble efforts to protect habitat given continuing biodiversity declines. Prioritization of future areas for protection is hampered by disagreements over what the ecological targets of conservation should be. Here we test the claim that such disagreements will become less important as conservation moves away from prioritizing areas for protection based only on ecological considerations and accounts for varying costs of protection using return-on-investment (ROI) methods. We combine a simulation approach with a case study of forests in the eastern United States, paying particular attention to how covariation between ecological benefits and economic costs influences agreement levels. For many conservation goals, agreement over spatial priorities improves with ROI methods. However, we also show that a reliance on ROI-based prioritization can sometimes exacerbate disagreements over priorities. As such, accounting for costs in conservation planning does not enable society to sidestep careful consideration of the ecological goals of conservation.

  13. Conservation, biodiversity and infectious disease: scientific evidence and policy implications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Young, Hillary S.; Wood, Chelsea L.; Kilpatrick, A. Marm; Lafferty, Kevin D.; Nunn, Charles L.; Vincent, Jeffrey R.

    2017-01-01

    Habitat destruction and infectious disease are dual threats to nature and people. The potential to simultaneously advance conservation and human health has attracted considerable scientific and popular interest; in particular, many authors have justified conservation action by pointing out potential public health benefits . One major focus of this debate—that biodiversity conservation often decreases infectious disease transmission via the dilution effect—remains contentious. Studies that test for a dilution effect often find a negative association between a diversity metric and a disease risk metric, but how such associations should inform conservation policy remains unclear for several reasons. For one, diversity and infection risk have many definitions, making it possible to identify measures that conform to expectations. Furthermore, the premise that habitat destruction consistently reduces biodiversity is in question, and disturbance or conservation can affect disease in many ways other than through biodiversity change. To date, few studies have examined the broader set of mechanisms by which anthropogenic disturbance or conservation might increase or decrease infectious disease risk to human populations. Due to interconnections between biodiversity change, economics and human behaviour, moving from ecological theory to policy action requires understanding how social and economic factors affect conservation.This Theme Issue arose from a meeting aimed at synthesizing current theory and data on ‘biodiversity, conservation and infectious disease’ (4–6 May 2015). Ecologists, evolutionary biologists, economists, epidemiologists, veterinary scientists, public health professionals, and conservation biologists from around the world discussed the latest research on the ecological and socio-economic links between conservation, biodiversity and infectious disease, and the open questions and controversies in these areas. By combining ecological understanding

  14. Green knowledge exchange Turkey-The Netherlands : priority issues identified for cooperation in the field of biodiversity protection and conservation : interviews with experts from Governmental and Non-Governmental Organisations based in Turkey and based in The Netherlands

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Klok, C.; Koopmanschap, E.M.J.

    2009-01-01

    As a consequence of its geographical location Turkey is very rich in biodiversity; its flora is richest, both in terms of overall plant diversity and level of endemism compared to Europe, North Africa, or countries in the Middle East. This report gives an overview of important biodiversity issues in

  15. Typology of public outreach for biodiversity conservation projects in Spain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jiménez, Amanda; Iniesta-Arandia, Irene; Muñoz-Santos, Maria; Martín-López, Berta; Jacobson, Susan K; Benayas, Javier

    2014-06-01

    Conservation education and outreach programs are a key approach to promote public understanding of the importance of biodiversity conservation. We reviewed 85 biodiversity conservation projects supported by the Spanish Ministry of Environment's Biodiversity Foundation. Through content analysis and descriptive statistics, we examined how the projects carried out communication, education, and public awareness and participation (CEPA) actions. We also used multivariate statistical analysis to develop a typology of 4 classes of biodiversity conservation projects on the basis of CEPA implementation. The classifications were delineated by purpose of CEPA, level of integration of CEPA actions, type of CEPA goals, main CEPA stakeholders, and aim of conservation. Our results confirm the existence of 2 key positions: CEPA has intrinsic value (i.e., they supposed the implementation of any CEPA action indirectly supported conservation) and CEPA is an instrument for achieving conservation goals. We also found that most CEPA actions addressed general audiences and school children, ignored minority groups and women, and did not include evaluation. The characteristics of the 4 types of projects and their frequency of implementation in the sample reflect the need for better integration of different types of actions (communication, education, and participation) and improved fostering of participation of multiple stakeholders in developing policy and implementing management strategies. © 2014 Society for Conservation Biology.

  16. The Role of Indigenous Knowledge in Biodiversity Conservation in ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    This paper is based on part of a broad study to investigate indigenous knowledge applied by the Lesotho Highlands communities to conserve biodiversity. A questionnaire was administered in 12 villages, to a population of 139 interviewees. It guided interviews on conservation of selected faunal and floral species with ...

  17. Constraints of philanthropy on determining the distribution of biodiversity conservation funding.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Larson, Eric R; Howell, Stephen; Kareiva, Peter; Armsworth, Paul R

    2016-02-01

    Caught between ongoing habitat destruction and funding shortfalls, conservation organizations are using systematic planning approaches to identify places that offer the highest biodiversity return per dollar invested. However, available tools do not account for the landscape of funding for conservation or quantify the constraints this landscape imposes on conservation outcomes. Using state-level data on philanthropic giving to and investments in land conservation by a large nonprofit organization, we applied linear regression to evaluate whether the spatial distribution of conservation philanthropy better explained expenditures on conservation than maps of biodiversity priorities, which were derived from a planning process internal to the organization and return on investment (ROI) analyses based on data on species richness, land costs, and existing protected areas. Philanthropic fund raising accounted for considerably more spatial variation in conservation spending (r(2) = 0.64) than either of the 2 systematic conservation planning approaches (r(2) = 0.08-0.21). We used results of one of the ROI analyses to evaluate whether increases in flexibility to reallocate funding across space provides conservation gains. Small but plausible "tax" increments of 1-10% on states redistributed to the optimal funding allocation from the ROI analysis could result in gains in endemic species protected of 8.5-80.2%. When such increases in spatial flexibility are not possible, conservation organizations should seek to cultivate increased support for conservation in priority locations. We used lagged correlations of giving to and spending by the organization to evaluate whether investments in habitat protection stimulate future giving to conservation. The most common outcome at the state level was that conservation spending quarters correlated significantly and positively with lagged fund raising quarters. In effect, periods of high fund raising for biodiversity followed (rather than

  18. Biodiversity Conservation, Tourism and Development in Okomu ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The increased rate of species extinction as a result of expanding human population, resource exploitation and land use threatens biological diversity. Biodiversity by definition refers to the life forms on earth. This includes the millions of plants, animals and micro-organisms, the genes they contain and the intricate ...

  19. Biodiversity conservation in a telecoupled world

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    L. Roman Carrasco

    2017-09-01

    Conservation practitioners need to adopt a global perspective on telecoupling and focus on the new conservation opportunities represented by shaping the social norms of affluent consumers in emerging and high-income economies.

  20. Examining current or future trade-offs for biodiversity conservation in north-eastern Australia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reside, April E; VanDerWal, Jeremy; Moilanen, Atte; Graham, Erin M

    2017-01-01

    With the high rate of ecosystem change already occurring and predicted to occur in the coming decades, long-term conservation has to account not only for current biodiversity but also for the biodiversity patterns anticipated for the future. The trade-offs between prioritising future biodiversity at the expense of current priorities must be understood to guide current conservation planning, but have been largely unexplored. To fill this gap, we compared the performance of four conservation planning solutions involving 662 vertebrate species in the Wet Tropics Natural Resource Management Cluster Region in north-eastern Australia. Input species data for the four planning solutions were: 1) current distributions; 2) projected distributions for 2055; 3) projected distributions for 2085; and 4) current, 2055 and 2085 projected distributions, and the connectivity between each of the three time periods for each species. The four planning solutions were remarkably similar (up to 85% overlap), suggesting that modelling for either current or future scenarios is sufficient for conversation planning for this region, with little obvious trade-off. Our analyses also revealed that overall, species with small ranges occurring across steep elevation gradients and at higher elevations were more likely to be better represented in all solutions. Given that species with these characteristics are of high conservation significance, our results provide confidence that conservation planning focused on either current, near- or distant-future biodiversity will account for these species.

  1. [Landscape planning approaches for biodiversity conservation in agriculture].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Yun-hui; Li, Liang-tao; Yu, Zhen-rong

    2008-11-01

    Biodiversity conservation in agriculture not only relates to the sustainable development of agriculture, but also is an essential part of species conservation. In recent years, the landscape planning approach for biodiversity was highlighted instead of species-focused approach. In this paper, the landscape factors affecting the biodiversity in agriculture were reviewed, and the possible landscape approaches at three different scales for more efficient conservation of biodiversity in agro-landscape were suggested, including: (1) the increase of the proportion of natural or semi-natural habitats in agriculture, diversification of land use or crop pattern, and protection or construction of corridor at landscape level; (2) the establishment of non-cropping elements such as field margin at between-field level; and (3) the application of reasonable crop density, crop distribution pattern and rotation, and intercrop etc. at within-field level. It was suggested that the relevant policies for natural conservation, land use planning, and ecological compensation should be made to apply the landscape approaches for biodiversity conservation at larger scale.

  2. Can Cape Town's unique biodiversity be saved? Balancing conservation imperatives and development needs

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Patricia M. Holmes

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available Cape Town is an urban hotspot within the Cape Floristic Region global biodiversity hotspot. This city of 2,460 km² encompasses four local centers of fynbos plant endemism, 19 national terrestrial vegetation types (six endemic to the city, wetland and coastal ecosystems, and 190 endemic plant species. Biodiversity in the lowlands is under threat of extinction as a result of habitat loss to agriculture, urban development, mining, and degradation by invasive alien plants. Cape Town's population is 3.7 million, increasing by an estimated 55,000 people/yr, which puts pressure on biodiversity remnants for development. South Africa is a signatory to international instruments to reduce biodiversity loss and has a good legislative and policy framework to conserve biodiversity, yet implementation actions are slow, with limited national and provincial support to conserve Cape Town's unique and irreplaceable biodiversity. The lack-of-action problem is two-fold: national government is slow to implement the policies developed to realize the international instruments it has signed, with conservation initiatives inadequately funded; and local governments are not yet recognized as important implementation partners. A further problem is created by conflicting policies such as the national housing policy that contributes to urban sprawl and loss of critical biodiversity areas. The City's Biodiversity Management Branch, with partners, is making some headway at implementation, but stronger political commitment is needed at all levels of government. Our objective is to improve the status and management of biodiversity in existing conservation areas through the statutory proclamation process and management effectiveness monitoring, respectively, and to secure priority areas of the BioNet, Cape Town's systematic biodiversity plan. The most important tools for the latter are incorporating the BioNet plan into City spatial plans; communication, education, and public

  3. Diversity and distribution of aquatic insects in Southern Brazil wetlands: implications for biodiversity conservation in a Neotropical region

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Leonardo Maltchik

    2012-03-01

    Full Text Available The selection of priority areas is an enormous challenge for biodiversity conservation. Some biogeographic methods have been used to identify the priority areas to conservation, and panbiogeography is one of them. This study aimed at the utilization of panbiogeographic tools, to identify the distribution patterns of aquatic insect genera, in wetland systems of an extensive area in the Neotropical region (~280 000km², and to compare the distribution of the biogeographic units identified by the aquatic insects, with the conservation units of Southern Brazil. We analyzed the distribution pattern of 82 genera distributed in four orders of aquatic insects (Diptera, Odonata, Ephemeroptera and Trichoptera in Southern Brazil wetlands. Therefore, 32 biogeographic nodes corresponded to the priority areas for conservation of the aquatic insect diversity. Among this total, 13 were located in the Atlantic Rainforest, 16 in the Pampa and three amongst both biomes. The distribution of nodes showed that only 15% of the dispersion centers of insects were inserted in conservation units. The four priority areas pointed by node cluster criterion must be considered in further inclusions of areas for biodiversity conservation in Southern Brazil wetlands, since such areas present species from differrent ancestral biota. The inclusion of such areas into the conservation units would be a strong way to conserve the aquatic biodiversity in this region.

  4. Diversity and distribution of aquatic insects in Southern Brazil wetlands: implications for biodiversity conservation in a Neotropical region.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maltchik, Leonardo; Dalzochio, Marina Schmidt; Stenert, Cristina; Rolon, Ana Silvia

    2012-03-01

    The selection of priority areas is an enormous challenge for biodiversity conservation. Some biogeographic methods have been used to identify the priority areas to conservation, and panbiogeography is one of them. This study aimed at the utilization of panbiogeographic tools, to identify the distribution patterns of aquatic insect genera, in wetland systems of an extensive area in the Neotropical region (approximately 280 000km2), and to compare the distribution of the biogeographic units identified by the aquatic insects, with the conservation units of Southern Brazil. We analyzed the distribution pattern of 82 genera distributed in four orders of aquatic insects (Diptera, Odonata, Ephemeroptera and Trichoptera) in Southern Brazil wetlands. Therefore, 32 biogeographic nodes corresponded to the priority areas for conservation of the aquatic insect diversity. Among this total, 13 were located in the Atlantic Rainforest, 16 in the Pampa and three amongst both biomes. The distribution of nodes showed that only 15% of the dispersion centers of insects were inserted in conservation units. The four priority areas pointed by node cluster criterion must be considered in further inclusions of areas for biodiversity conservation in Southern Brazil wetlands, since such areas present species from different ancestral biota. The inclusion of such areas into the conservation units would be a strong way to conserve the aquatic biodiversity in this region.

  5. The crowded sea: incorporating multiple marine activities in conservation plans can significantly alter spatial priorities.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tessa Mazor

    Full Text Available Successful implementation of marine conservation plans is largely inhibited by inadequate consideration of the broader social and economic context within which conservation operates. Marine waters and their biodiversity are shared by a host of stakeholders, such as commercial fishers, recreational users and offshore developers. Hence, to improve implementation success of conservation plans, we must incorporate other marine activities while explicitly examining trade-offs that may be required. In this study, we test how the inclusion of multiple marine activities can shape conservation plans. We used the entire Mediterranean territorial waters of Israel as a case study to compare four planning scenarios with increasing levels of complexity, where additional zones, threats and activities were added (e.g., commercial fisheries, hydrocarbon exploration interests, aquaculture, and shipping lanes. We applied the marine zoning decision support tool Marxan to each planning scenario and tested a the ability of each scenario to reach biodiversity targets, b the change in opportunity cost and c the alteration of spatial conservation priorities. We found that by including increasing numbers of marine activities and zones in the planning process, greater compromises are required to reach conservation objectives. Complex plans with more activities incurred greater opportunity cost and did not reach biodiversity targets as easily as simplified plans with less marine activities. We discovered that including hydrocarbon data in the planning process significantly alters spatial priorities. For the territorial waters of Israel we found that in order to protect at least 10% of the range of 166 marine biodiversity features there would be a loss of ∼15% of annual commercial fishery revenue and ∼5% of prospective hydrocarbon revenue. This case study follows an illustrated framework for adopting a transparent systematic process to balance biodiversity goals and

  6. Reconciling biodiversity conservation and marine capture fisheries production

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Brander, Keith

    2010-01-01

    Pathways for moving towards the goals of biodiversity conservation and food security in terrestrial systems include the application of trait-based ecology to develop highly productive agroecosystems with less negative effects on biodiversity. Although marine ecosystems have been impacted by human...... activity over several centuries, the changes have been unintentional and undirected; we have not learned how to enhance food production from the sea and are reliant, as hunter-gatherers, on natural production. The goals of maximising fisheries production and maintaining biodiversity may be difficult...

  7. Biodiversity in the City: Fundamental Questions for Understanding the Ecology of Urban Green Spaces for Biodiversity Conservation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Christopher A. Lepczyk; Myla F. J. Aronson; Karl L. Evans; Mark A. Goddard; Susannah B. Lerman; J. Scott MacIvor

    2017-01-01

    As urban areas expand, understanding how ecological processes function in cities has become increasingly important for conserving biodiversity. Urban green spaces are critical habitats to support biodiversity, but we still have a limited understanding of their ecology and how they function to conserve biodiversity at local and landscape scales across multiple taxa....

  8. Assessing shortfalls and complementary conservation areas for national plant biodiversity in South Korea.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Choe, Hyeyeong; Thorne, James H; Huber, Patrick R; Lee, Dongkun; Quinn, James F

    2018-01-01

    Protected areas (PAs) are often considered the most important biodiversity conservation areas in national plans, but PAs often do not represent national-scale biodiversity. We evaluate the current conservation status of plant biodiversity within current existing PAs, and identify potential additional PAs for South Korea. We modeled species ranges for 2,297 plant species using Multivariate Adaptive Regression Splines and compared the level of mean range representation in South Korea's existing PAs, which comprise 5.7% of the country's mainland area, with an equal-area alternative PA strategy selected with the reserve algorithm Marxan. We also used Marxan to model two additional conservation scenarios that add lands to approach the Aichi Biodiversity Target objectives (17% of the country). Existing PAs in South Korea contain an average of 6.3% of each plant species' range, compared to 5.9% in the modeled equal-area alternative. However, existing PAs primarily represent a high percentage of the ranges for high-elevation and small range size species. The additional PAs scenario that adds lands to the existing PAs covers 14,587.55 km2, and would improve overall plant range representation to a mean of 16.8% of every species' range. The other additional PAs scenario, which selects new PAs from all lands and covers 13,197.35 km2, would improve overall plant range representation to a mean of 13.5%. Even though the additional PAs that includes existing PAs represents higher percentages of species' ranges, it is missing many biodiversity hotspots in non-mountainous areas and the additional PAs without locking in the existing PAs represent almost all species' ranges evenly, including low-elevation ones with larger ranges. Some priority conservation areas we identified are expansions of, or near, existing PAs, especially in northeastern and southern South Korea. However, lowland coastal areas and areas surrounding the capital city, Seoul, are also critical for biodiversity

  9. Group decisions in biodiversity conservation: implications from game theory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frank, David M; Sarkar, Sahotra

    2010-05-27

    Decision analysis and game theory have proved useful tools in various biodiversity conservation planning and modeling contexts. This paper shows how game theory may be used to inform group decisions in biodiversity conservation scenarios by modeling conflicts between stakeholders to identify Pareto-inefficient Nash equilibria. These are cases in which each agent pursuing individual self-interest leads to a worse outcome for all, relative to other feasible outcomes. Three case studies from biodiversity conservation contexts showing this feature are modeled to demonstrate how game-theoretical representation can inform group decision-making. The mathematical theory of games is used to model three biodiversity conservation scenarios with Pareto-inefficient Nash equilibria: (i) a two-agent case involving wild dogs in South Africa; (ii) a three-agent raptor and grouse conservation scenario from the United Kingdom; and (iii) an n-agent fish and coral conservation scenario from the Philippines. In each case there is reason to believe that traditional mechanism-design solutions that appeal to material incentives may be inadequate, and the game-theoretical analysis recommends a resumption of further deliberation between agents and the initiation of trust--and confidence--building measures. Game theory can and should be used as a normative tool in biodiversity conservation contexts: identifying scenarios with Pareto-inefficient Nash equilibria enables constructive action in order to achieve (closer to) optimal conservation outcomes, whether by policy solutions based on mechanism design or otherwise. However, there is mounting evidence that formal mechanism-design solutions may backfire in certain cases. Such scenarios demand a return to group deliberation and the creation of reciprocal relationships of trust.

  10. Group decisions in biodiversity conservation: implications from game theory.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David M Frank

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Decision analysis and game theory have proved useful tools in various biodiversity conservation planning and modeling contexts. This paper shows how game theory may be used to inform group decisions in biodiversity conservation scenarios by modeling conflicts between stakeholders to identify Pareto-inefficient Nash equilibria. These are cases in which each agent pursuing individual self-interest leads to a worse outcome for all, relative to other feasible outcomes. Three case studies from biodiversity conservation contexts showing this feature are modeled to demonstrate how game-theoretical representation can inform group decision-making. METHODOLOGY AND PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: The mathematical theory of games is used to model three biodiversity conservation scenarios with Pareto-inefficient Nash equilibria: (i a two-agent case involving wild dogs in South Africa; (ii a three-agent raptor and grouse conservation scenario from the United Kingdom; and (iii an n-agent fish and coral conservation scenario from the Philippines. In each case there is reason to believe that traditional mechanism-design solutions that appeal to material incentives may be inadequate, and the game-theoretical analysis recommends a resumption of further deliberation between agents and the initiation of trust--and confidence--building measures. CONCLUSIONS AND SIGNIFICANCE: Game theory can and should be used as a normative tool in biodiversity conservation contexts: identifying scenarios with Pareto-inefficient Nash equilibria enables constructive action in order to achieve (closer to optimal conservation outcomes, whether by policy solutions based on mechanism design or otherwise. However, there is mounting evidence that formal mechanism-design solutions may backfire in certain cases. Such scenarios demand a return to group deliberation and the creation of reciprocal relationships of trust.

  11. Unravelling biodiversity, evolution and threats to conservation in the Sahara-Sahel.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brito, José C; Godinho, Raquel; Martínez-Freiría, Fernando; Pleguezuelos, Juan M; Rebelo, Hugo; Santos, Xavier; Vale, Cândida G; Velo-Antón, Guillermo; Boratyński, Zbyszek; Carvalho, Sílvia B; Ferreira, Sónia; Gonçalves, Duarte V; Silva, Teresa L; Tarroso, Pedro; Campos, João C; Leite, João V; Nogueira, Joana; Alvares, Francisco; Sillero, Neftalí; Sow, Andack S; Fahd, Soumia; Crochet, Pierre-André; Carranza, Salvador

    2014-02-01

    evolutionary and ecological processes, including causes and timing of radiation and divergence for multiple taxa, and associating the onset of the Sahara with diversification processes for low-mobility vertebrates. Examples of phylogeographic patterns are showing the importance of allopatric speciation in the Sahara-Sahel, and this review presents a synthetic overview of the most commonly hypothesised diversification mechanisms. Studies are also stressing that biodiversity is threatened by increasing human activities in the region, including overhunting and natural resources prospection, and in the future by predicted global warming. A representation of areas of conflict, landmines, and natural resources extraction illustrates how human activities and regional insecurity are hampering biodiversity research and conservation. Although there are still numerous knowledge gaps for the optimised conservation of biodiversity in the region, a set of research priorities is provided to identify the framework data needed to support regional conservation planning. © 2013 The Authors. Biological Reviews © 2013 Cambridge Philosophical Society.

  12. Conservation priorities in the Apache Highlands ecoregion

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dale Turner; Rob Marshall; Carolyn A. F. Enquist; Anne Gondor; David F. Gori; Eduardo Lopez; Gonzalo Luna; Rafaela Paredes Aguilar; Chris Watts; Sabra Schwartz

    2005-01-01

    The Apache Highlands ecoregion incorporates the entire Madrean Archipelago/Sky Island region. We analyzed the current distribution of 223 target species and 26 terrestrial ecological systems there, and compared them with constraints on ecosystem integrity (e.g., road density) to determine the most efficient set of areas needed to maintain current biodiversity. The...

  13. Ecosystem Services Modeling as a Tool for Defining Priority Areas for Conservation.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gabriela Teixeira Duarte

    Full Text Available Conservationists often have difficulty obtaining financial and social support for protected areas that do not demonstrate their benefits for society. Therefore, ecosystem services have gained importance in conservation science in the last decade, as these services provide further justification for appropriate management and conservation of natural systems. We used InVEST software and a set of GIS procedures to quantify, spatialize and evaluated the overlap between ecosystem services-carbon stock and sediment retention-and a biodiversity proxy-habitat quality. In addition, we proposed a method that serves as an initial approach of a priority areas selection process. The method considers the synergism between ecosystem services and biodiversity conservation. Our study region is the Iron Quadrangle, an important Brazilian mining province and a conservation priority area located in the interface of two biodiversity hotspots, the Cerrado and Atlantic Forest biomes. The resultant priority area for the maintenance of the highest values of ecosystem services and habitat quality was about 13% of the study area. Among those priority areas, 30% are already within established strictly protected areas, and 12% are in sustainable use protected areas. Following the transparent and highly replicable method we proposed in this study, conservation planners can better determine which areas fulfill multiple goals and can locate the trade-offs in the landscape. We also gave a step towards the improvement of the habitat quality model with a topography parameter. In areas of very rugged topography, we have to consider geomorfometric barriers for anthropogenic impacts and for species movement and we must think beyond the linear distances. Moreover, we used a model that considers the tree mortality caused by edge effects in the estimation of carbon stock. We found low spatial congruence among the modeled services, mostly because of the pattern of sediment retention

  14. Ecosystem Services Modeling as a Tool for Defining Priority Areas for Conservation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Duarte, Gabriela Teixeira; Ribeiro, Milton Cezar; Paglia, Adriano Pereira

    2016-01-01

    Conservationists often have difficulty obtaining financial and social support for protected areas that do not demonstrate their benefits for society. Therefore, ecosystem services have gained importance in conservation science in the last decade, as these services provide further justification for appropriate management and conservation of natural systems. We used InVEST software and a set of GIS procedures to quantify, spatialize and evaluated the overlap between ecosystem services-carbon stock and sediment retention-and a biodiversity proxy-habitat quality. In addition, we proposed a method that serves as an initial approach of a priority areas selection process. The method considers the synergism between ecosystem services and biodiversity conservation. Our study region is the Iron Quadrangle, an important Brazilian mining province and a conservation priority area located in the interface of two biodiversity hotspots, the Cerrado and Atlantic Forest biomes. The resultant priority area for the maintenance of the highest values of ecosystem services and habitat quality was about 13% of the study area. Among those priority areas, 30% are already within established strictly protected areas, and 12% are in sustainable use protected areas. Following the transparent and highly replicable method we proposed in this study, conservation planners can better determine which areas fulfill multiple goals and can locate the trade-offs in the landscape. We also gave a step towards the improvement of the habitat quality model with a topography parameter. In areas of very rugged topography, we have to consider geomorfometric barriers for anthropogenic impacts and for species movement and we must think beyond the linear distances. Moreover, we used a model that considers the tree mortality caused by edge effects in the estimation of carbon stock. We found low spatial congruence among the modeled services, mostly because of the pattern of sediment retention distribution.

  15. Concluding remarks: overall impacts on biodiversity and future perspectives for conservation in the Pantanal biome.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alho, C J R

    2011-04-01

    The Pantanal biome is characterised by seasonal flooding which determines specific ecosystem processes, with the occurrence of adapted plants and animals to the annual shrinking and expansion of habitats due to the seasonal hydrological regime. Biodiversity abundance varies during the dry and wet seasons. The Pantanal's biodiversity is a fundamental component of ecosystem services for human society, including nutrient cycling, fish production, ecotourism, carbon storage, flood control, among others, which are relevant to regional and global environmental consequences. The biome has been impacted by the conversion of natural vegetation into agricultural fields and pasture for cattle raising, with alteration and loss of natural habitats and biodiversity. Major negative impacts occur in uplands, with drastic deforestation of savanna vegetation, where main rivers feeding the Pantanal have their springs. This article discusses future needs and priorities for ecological research, in order to better understand the biome's natural system, to achieve conservation and sustainable use.

  16. Concluding remarks: overall impacts on biodiversity and future perspectives for conservation in the Pantanal biome

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    CJR. Alho

    Full Text Available The Pantanal biome is characterised by seasonal flooding which determines specific ecosystem processes, with the occurrence of adapted plants and animals to the annual shrinking and expansion of habitats due to the seasonal hydrological regime. Biodiversity abundance varies during the dry and wet seasons. The Pantanal's biodiversity is a fundamental component of ecosystem services for human society, including nutrient cycling, fish production, ecotourism, carbon storage, flood control, among others, which are relevant to regional and global environmental consequences. The biome has been impacted by the conversion of natural vegetation into agricultural fields and pasture for cattle raising, with alteration and loss of natural habitats and biodiversity. Major negative impacts occur in uplands, with drastic deforestation of savanna vegetation, where main rivers feeding the Pantanal have their springs. This article discusses future needs and priorities for ecological research, in order to better understand the biome's natural system, to achieve conservation and sustainable use.

  17. Biodiversity

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Scholes, RJ

    2006-01-01

    Full Text Available Biodiversity offers multiple opportunities for development and improving human well-being. It is the basis for essential environmental services upon which life on Earth depends. Thus, its conservation and sustainable use are of critical importance...

  18. Biodiversity losses and conservation responses in the Anthropocene.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, Christopher N; Balmford, Andrew; Brook, Barry W; Buettel, Jessie C; Galetti, Mauro; Guangchun, Lei; Wilmshurst, Janet M

    2017-04-21

    Biodiversity is essential to human well-being, but people have been reducing biodiversity throughout human history. Loss of species and degradation of ecosystems are likely to further accelerate in the coming years. Our understanding of this crisis is now clear, and world leaders have pledged to avert it. Nonetheless, global goals to reduce the rate of biodiversity loss have mostly not been achieved. However, many examples of conservation success show that losses can be halted and even reversed. Building on these lessons to turn the tide of biodiversity loss will require bold and innovative action to transform historical relationships between human populations and nature. Copyright © 2017, American Association for the Advancement of Science.

  19. Biodiversity change is uncoupled from species richness trends : Consequences for conservation and monitoring

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hillebrand, Helmut; Blasius, Bernd; Borer, Elizabeth T.; Chase, Jonathan M.; Downing, John A.; Eriksson, Britas Klemens; Filstrup, Christopher T.; Harpole, W. Stanley; Hodapp, Dorothee; Larsen, Stefano; Lewandowska, Aleksandra M.; Seabloom, Eric W.; Van de Waal, Dedmer B.; Ryabov, Alexey B.

    Global concern about human impact on biological diversity has triggered an intense research agenda on drivers and consequences of biodiversity change in parallel with international policy seeking to conserve biodiversity and associated ecosystem functions. Quantifying the trends in biodiversity is

  20. Considering connections between Hollywood and biodiversity conservation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Silk, Matthew J; Crowley, Sarah L; Woodhead, Anna J; Nuno, Ana

    2018-06-01

    Cinema offers a substantial opportunity to share messages with a wide audience. However, there is little research or evidence about the potential benefits and risks of cinema for conservation. Given their global reach, cinematic representations could be important in raising awareness of conservation issues and species of concern, as well as encouraging greater audience engagement due to their heightened emotional impact on viewers. Yet there are also risks associated with increased exposure, including heightened visitor pressure to environmentally sensitive areas or changes to consumer demand for endangered species. Conservationists can better understand and engage with the film industry by studying the impact of movies on audience awareness and behavior, identifying measurable impacts on conservation outcomes, and engaging directly with the movie industry, for example, in an advisory capacity. This improved understanding and engagement can harness the industry's potential to enhance the positive impacts of movies featuring species, sites, and issues of conservation concern and to mitigate any negative effects. A robust evidence base for evaluating and planning these engagements, and for informing related policy and management decisions, needs to be built. © 2017 Society for Conservation Biology.

  1. How effective are biodiversity conservation payments in Mexico?

    OpenAIRE

    Costedoat, Sébastien; Corbera, Esteve; Ezzine de Blas, Driss; Honey-Rosés, Jordi; Baylis, Kathy; Castillo-Santiago, Miguel Angel

    2015-01-01

    We assess the additional forest cover protected by 13 rural communities located in the southern state of Chiapas, Mexico, as a result of the economic incentives received through the country's national program of payments for biodiversity conservation. We use spatially explicit data at the intra-community level to define a credible counterfactual of conservation outcomes.We use covariate-matching specifications associated with spatially explicit variables and difference-in-difference estimator...

  2. Conservation narratives in Peru: envisioning biodiversity in sustainable development

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yves M. Zinngrebe

    2016-06-01

    In a second step, a comparative analysis of the dominant and diverging political perspectives is made. I argue that by deconstructing underlying premises and ideologies, common ground and possible opportunities for collaboration can be identified. Moreover, although the presented results can serve as a discussion scaffold to organize conservation debates in Peru, this example demonstrates how the terms biodiversity and sustainability are operationalized in conservation narratives.

  3. Conservation of biodiversity through taxonomy, data publication, and collaborative infrastructures.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Costello, Mark J; Vanhoorne, Bart; Appeltans, Ward

    2015-08-01

    Taxonomy is the foundation of biodiversity science because it furthers discovery of new species. Globally, there have never been so many people involved in naming species new to science. The number of new marine species described per decade has never been greater. Nevertheless, it is estimated that tens of thousands of marine species, and hundreds of thousands of terrestrial species, are yet to be discovered; many of which may already be in specimen collections. However, naming species is only a first step in documenting knowledge about their biology, biogeography, and ecology. Considering the threats to biodiversity, new knowledge of existing species and discovery of undescribed species and their subsequent study are urgently required. To accelerate this research, we recommend, and cite examples of, more and better communication: use of collaborative online databases; easier access to knowledge and specimens; production of taxonomic revisions and species identification guides; engagement of nonspecialists; and international collaboration. "Data-sharing" should be abandoned in favor of mandated data publication by the conservation science community. Such a step requires support from peer reviewers, editors, journals, and conservation organizations. Online data publication infrastructures (e.g., Global Biodiversity Information Facility, Ocean Biogeographic Information System) illustrate gaps in biodiversity sampling and may provide common ground for long-term international collaboration between scientists and conservation organizations. © 2015 Society for Conservation Biology.

  4. Young People's Views on the Importance of Conserving Biodiversity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grace, Marcus; Sharp, John

    2000-01-01

    Discusses the findings of a study of the views of 15 and 16 year-olds on the importance of biodiversity conservation. Reports general disapproval for human economic activities that might threaten wildlife with extinction, although significantly fewer boys than girls held this view. (Contains 16 references.) (Author/YDS)

  5. Biodiversity Conservation and the Sacred Forests of Emohua, Rivers ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    These sacred sites are regarded as the temples of god by the local people due to their beliefs, but technically the forests are centres of biodiversity. In recent times, anthropogenic interference activities expose the forest to threat and challenges which make the development and adoption of conservation strategies inevitable.

  6. Conserving tropical biodiversity via market forces and spatial targeting

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bateman, Ian J.; Coombes, Emma; Fitzherbert, Emily; Binner, Amy; Bad’ura, Tomáš; Carbone, Chris; Fisher, Brendan; Naidoo, Robin; Watkinson, Andrew R.

    2015-01-01

    The recent report from the Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity [(2010) Global Biodiversity Outlook 3] acknowledges that ongoing biodiversity loss necessitates swift, radical action. Protecting undisturbed lands, although vital, is clearly insufficient, and the key role of unprotected, private land owned is being increasingly recognized. Seeking to avoid common assumptions of a social planner backed by government interventions, the present work focuses on the incentives of the individual landowner. We use detailed data to show that successful conservation on private land depends on three factors: conservation effectiveness (impact on target species), private costs (especially reductions in production), and private benefits (the extent to which conservation activities provide compensation, for example, by enhancing the value of remaining production). By examining the high-profile issue of palm-oil production in a major tropical biodiversity hotspot, we show that the levels of both conservation effectiveness and private costs are inherently spatial; varying the location of conservation activities can radically change both their effectiveness and private cost implications. We also use an economic choice experiment to show that consumers' willingness to pay for conservation-grade palm-oil products has the potential to incentivize private producers sufficiently to engage in conservation activities, supporting vulnerable International Union for Conservation of Nature Red Listed species. However, these incentives vary according to the scale and efficiency of production and the extent to which conservation is targeted to optimize its cost-effectiveness. Our integrated, interdisciplinary approach shows how strategies to harness the power of the market can usefully complement existing—and to-date insufficient—approaches to conservation. PMID:26077906

  7. Conserving tropical biodiversity via market forces and spatial targeting.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bateman, Ian J; Coombes, Emma; Fitzherbert, Emily; Binner, Amy; Bad'ura, Tomáš; Carbone, Chris; Fisher, Brendan; Naidoo, Robin; Watkinson, Andrew R

    2015-06-16

    The recent report from the Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity [(2010) Global Biodiversity Outlook 3] acknowledges that ongoing biodiversity loss necessitates swift, radical action. Protecting undisturbed lands, although vital, is clearly insufficient, and the key role of unprotected, private land owned is being increasingly recognized. Seeking to avoid common assumptions of a social planner backed by government interventions, the present work focuses on the incentives of the individual landowner. We use detailed data to show that successful conservation on private land depends on three factors: conservation effectiveness (impact on target species), private costs (especially reductions in production), and private benefits (the extent to which conservation activities provide compensation, for example, by enhancing the value of remaining production). By examining the high-profile issue of palm-oil production in a major tropical biodiversity hotspot, we show that the levels of both conservation effectiveness and private costs are inherently spatial; varying the location of conservation activities can radically change both their effectiveness and private cost implications. We also use an economic choice experiment to show that consumers' willingness to pay for conservation-grade palm-oil products has the potential to incentivize private producers sufficiently to engage in conservation activities, supporting vulnerable International Union for Conservation of Nature Red Listed species. However, these incentives vary according to the scale and efficiency of production and the extent to which conservation is targeted to optimize its cost-effectiveness. Our integrated, interdisciplinary approach shows how strategies to harness the power of the market can usefully complement existing--and to-date insufficient--approaches to conservation.

  8. USDA Forest Service Roadless Areas: Potential Biodiversity Conservation Reserves

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Colby Loucks

    2003-12-01

    Full Text Available In January 2001, approximately 23 x 106 ha of land in the U.S. National Forest System were slated to remain roadless and protected from timber extraction under the Final Roadless Conservation Rule. We examined the potential contributions of these areas to the conservation of biodiversity. Using GIS, we analyzed the concordance of inventoried roadless areas (IRAs with ecoregion-scale biological importance and endangered and imperiled species distributions on a scale of 1:24,000. We found that more than 25% of IRAs are located in globally or regionally outstanding ecoregions and that 77% of inventoried roadless areas have the potential to conserve threatened, endangered, or imperiled species. IRAs would increase the conservation reserve network containing these species by 156%. We further illustrate the conservation potential of IRAs by highlighting their contribution to the conservation of the grizzly bear (Ursos arctos, a wide-ranging carnivore. The area created by the addition of IRAs to the existing system of conservation reserves shows a strong concordance with grizzly bear recovery zones and habitat range. Based on these findings, we conclude that IRAs belonging to the U.S. Forest Service are one of the most important biotic areas in the nation, and that their status as roadless areas could have lasting and far-reaching effects for biodiversity conservation.

  9. Biodiversity conservation and climate mitigation: What role can economic instruments play?

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ring, I.; Drechsler, M.; Teeffelen, van A.J.A.; Irawan, S.; Venter, O.

    2010-01-01

    Tradable permits and intergovernmental fiscal transfers play an increasing role in both biodiversity conservation and climate mitigation. In comparison to regulatory and planning approaches these economic instruments offer a more flexible and cost-effective approach to biodiversity conservation.

  10. Incorporating the effects of socioeconomic uncertainty into priority setting for conservation investment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McBride, Marissa F; Wilson, Kerrie A; Bode, Michael; Possingham, Hugh P

    2007-12-01

    Uncertainty in the implementation and outcomes of conservation actions that is not accounted for leaves conservation plans vulnerable to potential changes in future conditions. We used a decision-theoretic approach to investigate the effects of two types of investment uncertainty on the optimal allocation of global conservation resources for land acquisition in the Mediterranean Basin. We considered uncertainty about (1) whether investment will continue and (2) whether the acquired biodiversity assets are secure, which we termed transaction uncertainty and performance uncertainty, respectively. We also developed and tested the robustness of different rules of thumb for guiding the allocation of conservation resources when these sources of uncertainty exist. In the presence of uncertainty in future investment ability (transaction uncertainty), the optimal strategy was opportunistic, meaning the investment priority should be to act where uncertainty is highest while investment remains possible. When there was a probability that investments would fail (performance uncertainty), the optimal solution became a complex trade-off between the immediate biodiversity benefits of acting in a region and the perceived longevity of the investment. In general, regions were prioritized for investment when they had the greatest performance certainty, even if an alternative region was highly threatened or had higher biodiversity value. The improved performance of rules of thumb when accounting for uncertainty highlights the importance of explicitly incorporating sources of investment uncertainty and evaluating potential conservation investments in the context of their likely long-term success.

  11. Assessing the Cost of Global Biodiversity and Conservation Knowledge.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Juffe-Bignoli, Diego; Brooks, Thomas M; Butchart, Stuart H M; Jenkins, Richard B; Boe, Kaia; Hoffmann, Michael; Angulo, Ariadne; Bachman, Steve; Böhm, Monika; Brummitt, Neil; Carpenter, Kent E; Comer, Pat J; Cox, Neil; Cuttelod, Annabelle; Darwall, William R T; Di Marco, Moreno; Fishpool, Lincoln D C; Goettsch, Bárbara; Heath, Melanie; Hilton-Taylor, Craig; Hutton, Jon; Johnson, Tim; Joolia, Ackbar; Keith, David A; Langhammer, Penny F; Luedtke, Jennifer; Nic Lughadha, Eimear; Lutz, Maiko; May, Ian; Miller, Rebecca M; Oliveira-Miranda, María A; Parr, Mike; Pollock, Caroline M; Ralph, Gina; Rodríguez, Jon Paul; Rondinini, Carlo; Smart, Jane; Stuart, Simon; Symes, Andy; Tordoff, Andrew W; Woodley, Stephen; Young, Bruce; Kingston, Naomi

    2016-01-01

    Knowledge products comprise assessments of authoritative information supported by standards, governance, quality control, data, tools, and capacity building mechanisms. Considerable resources are dedicated to developing and maintaining knowledge products for biodiversity conservation, and they are widely used to inform policy and advise decision makers and practitioners. However, the financial cost of delivering this information is largely undocumented. We evaluated the costs and funding sources for developing and maintaining four global biodiversity and conservation knowledge products: The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species, the IUCN Red List of Ecosystems, Protected Planet, and the World Database of Key Biodiversity Areas. These are secondary data sets, built on primary data collected by extensive networks of expert contributors worldwide. We estimate that US$160 million (range: US$116-204 million), plus 293 person-years of volunteer time (range: 278-308 person-years) valued at US$ 14 million (range US$12-16 million), were invested in these four knowledge products between 1979 and 2013. More than half of this financing was provided through philanthropy, and nearly three-quarters was spent on personnel costs. The estimated annual cost of maintaining data and platforms for three of these knowledge products (excluding the IUCN Red List of Ecosystems for which annual costs were not possible to estimate for 2013) is US$6.5 million in total (range: US$6.2-6.7 million). We estimated that an additional US$114 million will be needed to reach pre-defined baselines of data coverage for all the four knowledge products, and that once achieved, annual maintenance costs will be approximately US$12 million. These costs are much lower than those to maintain many other, similarly important, global knowledge products. Ensuring that biodiversity and conservation knowledge products are sufficiently up to date, comprehensive and accurate is fundamental to inform decision-making for

  12. Data requirements and data sources for biodiversity priority area ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Unknown

    tions required for a priority areas analysis. An important ..... Analysis Project, etc. Even before bias can be assessed and decisions taken either to proceed with existing data, model expected data. (see below), collect new data, or reject the data, those data have to be ..... Caudill 1990). They are a form of artificial intelligence,.

  13. Representation of global and national conservation priorities by Colombia's Protected Area Network.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Forero-Medina, German; Joppa, Lucas

    2010-10-12

    How do national-level actions overlap with global priorities for conservation? Answering this question is especially important in countries with high and unique biological diversity like Colombia. Global biodiversity schemes provide conservation guidance at a large scale, while national governments gazette land for protection based on a combination of criteria at regional or local scales. Information on how a protected area network represents global and national conservation priorities is crucial for finding gaps in coverage and for future expansion of the system. We evaluated the agreement of Colombia's protected area network with global conservation priorities, and the extent to which the network reflects the country's biomes, species richness, and common environmental and physical conditions. We used this information to identify priority biomes for conservation. We find the dominant strategy in Colombia has been a proactive one, allocating the highest proportion of protected land on intact, difficult to access and species rich areas like the Amazon. Threatened and unique areas are disproportionately absent from Colombia's protected lands. We highlight six biomes in Colombia as conservation priorities that should be considered in any future expansion of Colombia's protected area network. Two of these biomes have less than 3% of their area protected and more than 70% of their area transformed for human use. One has less than 3% protected and high numbers of threatened vertebrates. Three biomes fall in both categories. Expansion of Colombia's Protected Area Network should consider the current representativeness of the network. We indicate six priority biomes that can contribute to improving the representation of threatened species and biomes in Colombia.

  14. Conservation priorities for mammals in megadiverse Mexico: the efficiency of reserve networks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ceballos, Gerardo

    2007-03-01

    A major goal of conservation biologists is to identify critical areas for the conservation of biological diversity and then strategically include them in an efficient system of reserves. In general, however, reserve networks have been selected for different objectives, and most countries lack an evaluation of their reserves' ability to represent a percentage of the national diversity. This paper evaluates the effectiveness of a network of reserves to represent the species of mammals in Mexico. The focus of the analyses is on species and site level, evaluating the representation of all terrestrial mammals in the 30 most important reserves. The representation of all species, endemic species, endangered species, and species with restricted distributions in the reserves was assessed and compared. Endemic or endangered species with restricted distributions were expected to be less represented in reserves than were widespread species. The most important reserves for the conservation of mammals were determined with the use of complementarity analyses. Priority sites for the representation of all the species currently absent from the reserve network were then selected. The results have broad applications for conservation. First, 82% of the mammal species from Mexico were represented in the reserve network, which covers a small portion (3.8%) of the country. Second, this percentage is certainly larger as several reserves were not evaluated due to a lack of data. A priority for a national conservation strategy could be to conduct biological surveys in those reserves lacking inventories to evaluate their contribution to conservation. Third, in spite of its demonstrated value, Mexico's reserve network can be improved by designating complementary areas. Additional priority sites, where reserves are required to represent most gap species in the network, were identified. Finally, it is clear that this reserve network has limitations for maintaining biodiversity and ecosystem

  15. The effectiveness of surrogate taxa to conserve freshwater biodiversity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stewart, David R.; Underwood, Zachary E.; Rahel, Frank J.; Walters, Annika W.

    2018-01-01

    Establishing protected areas has long been an effective conservation strategy, and is often based on more readily surveyed species. The potential of any freshwater taxa to be a surrogate of other aquatic groups has not been fully explored. We compiled occurrence data on 72 species of freshwater fish, amphibians, mussels, and aquatic reptiles for the Great Plains, Wyoming. We used hierarchical Bayesian multi-species mixture models and MaxEnt models to describe species distributions, and program Zonation to identify conservation priority areas for each aquatic group. The landscape-scale factors that best characterized aquatic species distributions differed among groups. There was low agreement and congruence among taxa-specific conservation priorities (<20%), meaning that no surrogate priority areas would include or protect the best habitats of other aquatic taxa. We found that common, wide-ranging aquatic species were included in taxa-specific priority areas, but rare freshwater species were not included. Thus, the development of conservation priorities based on a single freshwater aquatic group would not protect all species in the other aquatic groups.

  16. Fish biodiversity and conservation in South America.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reis, R E; Albert, J S; Di Dario, F; Mincarone, M M; Petry, P; Rocha, L A

    2016-07-01

    The freshwater and marine fish faunas of South America are the most diverse on Earth, with current species richness estimates standing above 9100 species. In addition, over the last decade at least 100 species were described every year. There are currently about 5160 freshwater fish species, and the estimate for the freshwater fish fauna alone points to a final diversity between 8000 and 9000 species. South America also has c. 4000 species of marine fishes. The mega-diverse fish faunas of South America evolved over a period of >100 million years, with most lineages tracing origins to Gondwana and the adjacent Tethys Sea. This high diversity was in part maintained by escaping the mass extinctions and biotic turnovers associated with Cenozoic climate cooling, the formation of boreal and temperate zones at high latitudes and aridification in many places at equatorial latitudes. The fresh waters of the continent are divided into 13 basin complexes, large basins consolidated as a single unit plus historically connected adjacent coastal drainages, and smaller coastal basins grouped together on the basis of biogeographic criteria. Species diversity, endemism, noteworthy groups and state of knowledge of each basin complex are described. Marine habitats around South America, both coastal and oceanic, are also described in terms of fish diversity, endemism and state of knowledge. Because of extensive land use changes, hydroelectric damming, water divergence for irrigation, urbanization, sedimentation and overfishing 4-10% of all fish species in South America face some degree of extinction risk, mainly due to habitat loss and degradation. These figures suggest that the conservation status of South American freshwater fish faunas is better than in most other regions of the world, but the marine fishes are as threatened as elsewhere. Conserving the remarkable aquatic habitats and fishes of South America is a growing challenge in face of the rapid anthropogenic changes of the 21

  17. [Advances in the research on hyperspectral remote sensing in biodiversity and conservation].

    Science.gov (United States)

    He, Cheng; Feng, Zhong-Ke; Yuan, Jin-Jun; Wang, Jia; Gong, Yin-Xi; Dong, Zhi-Hai

    2012-06-01

    With the species reduction and the habitat destruction becoming serious increasingly, the biodiversity conservation has become one of the hottest topics. Remote sensing, the science of non-contact collection information, has the function of corresponding estimates of biodiversity, building model between species diversity relationship and mapping the index of biodiversity, which has been used widely in the field of biodiversity conservation. The present paper discussed the application of hyperspectral technology to the biodiversity conservation from two aspects, remote sensors and remote sensing techniques, and after, enumerated successful applications for emphasis. All these had a certain reference value in the development of biodiversity conservation.

  18. A freshwater biodiversity hotspot under pressure - assessing threats and identifying conservation needs for ancient Lake Ohrid

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kostoski, G.; Albrecht, C.; Trajanovski, S.; Wilke, T.

    2010-12-01

    conservation activities, and ongoing research on conservation and raising of public awareness. Following this summary, we evaluate the status quo and future of Lake Ohrid and its biota. A comprehensive conservation strategy should include measures that result in an immediate reduction of nutrient input, particularly with phosphorus, in order to slow down the ongoing eutrophication process. The existing watershed management should become more effective. Implementation and particularly with a view to the enforcement of national laws should be enhanced. Increased research on the lakes' limnology, biodiversity, and conservation management practices are necessary. The latter research should identify conservation priorities. Public awareness should be enhanced. Facing these parallel needs to protect the unique biodiversity of Lake Ohrid, we suggest urging (a) implementation and enforcement of the General Management Plan that would ensure long-term integrated and sustainable use of the lake and its watershed, (b) scientific studies on ecology, biodiversity and effects of human impact, (c) the establishment of Core Conservation areas (CCA), including underwater reserves, and (d) Coastal Zone Management (CZM) areas that would constitute buffer zones for the CCAs around the lake. Given the number of identified threats, it is clear that only concerted international action can stop or at least slow down further degradation of Lake Ohrid and the creeping biodiversity crisis already evident. All conservation activities should, among others, ultimately lead to a trans-boundary major conservation area of the Ohrid-Prespa region that would allow long-term integration of both humans and nature.

  19. Can wide consultation help with setting priorities for large-scale biodiversity monitoring programs?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Frédéric Boivin

    Full Text Available Climate and other global change phenomena affecting biodiversity require monitoring to track ecosystem changes and guide policy and management actions. Designing a biodiversity monitoring program is a difficult task that requires making decisions that often lack consensus due to budgetary constrains. As monitoring programs require long-term investment, they also require strong and continuing support from all interested parties. As such, stakeholder consultation is key to identify priorities and make sound design decisions that have as much support as possible. Here, we present the results of a consultation conducted to serve as an aid for designing a large-scale biodiversity monitoring program for the province of Québec (Canada. The consultation took the form of a survey with 13 discrete choices involving tradeoffs in respect to design priorities and 10 demographic questions (e.g., age, profession. The survey was sent to thousands of individuals having expected interests and knowledge about biodiversity and was completed by 621 participants. Overall, consensuses were few and it appeared difficult to create a design fulfilling the priorities of the majority. Most participants wanted 1 a monitoring design covering the entire territory and focusing on natural habitats; 2 a focus on species related to ecosystem services, on threatened and on invasive species. The only demographic characteristic that was related to the type of prioritization was the declared level of knowledge in biodiversity (null to high, but even then the influence was quite small.

  20. Can wide consultation help with setting priorities for large-scale biodiversity monitoring programs?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boivin, Frédéric; Simard, Anouk; Peres-Neto, Pedro

    2014-01-01

    Climate and other global change phenomena affecting biodiversity require monitoring to track ecosystem changes and guide policy and management actions. Designing a biodiversity monitoring program is a difficult task that requires making decisions that often lack consensus due to budgetary constrains. As monitoring programs require long-term investment, they also require strong and continuing support from all interested parties. As such, stakeholder consultation is key to identify priorities and make sound design decisions that have as much support as possible. Here, we present the results of a consultation conducted to serve as an aid for designing a large-scale biodiversity monitoring program for the province of Québec (Canada). The consultation took the form of a survey with 13 discrete choices involving tradeoffs in respect to design priorities and 10 demographic questions (e.g., age, profession). The survey was sent to thousands of individuals having expected interests and knowledge about biodiversity and was completed by 621 participants. Overall, consensuses were few and it appeared difficult to create a design fulfilling the priorities of the majority. Most participants wanted 1) a monitoring design covering the entire territory and focusing on natural habitats; 2) a focus on species related to ecosystem services, on threatened and on invasive species. The only demographic characteristic that was related to the type of prioritization was the declared level of knowledge in biodiversity (null to high), but even then the influence was quite small.

  1. Conservation archaeogenomics: ancient DNA and biodiversity in the Anthropocene.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hofman, Courtney A; Rick, Torben C; Fleischer, Robert C; Maldonado, Jesús E

    2015-09-01

    There is growing consensus that we have entered the Anthropocene, a geologic epoch characterized by human domination of the ecosystems of the Earth. With the future uncertain, we are faced with understanding how global biodiversity will respond to anthropogenic perturbations. The archaeological record provides perspective on human-environment relations through time and across space. Ancient DNA (aDNA) analyses of plant and animal remains from archaeological sites are particularly useful for understanding past human-environment interactions, which can help guide conservation decisions during the environmental changes of the Anthropocene. Here, we define the emerging field of conservation archaeogenomics, which integrates archaeological and genomic data to generate baselines or benchmarks for scientists, managers, and policy-makers by evaluating climatic and human impacts on past, present, and future biodiversity. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  2. Reframing the land-sparing/land-sharing debate for biodiversity conservation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kremen, Claire

    2015-10-01

    Conservation biologists are devoting an increasing amount of energy to debating whether land sparing (high-yielding agriculture on a small land footprint) or land sharing (low-yielding, wildlife-friendly agriculture on a larger land footprint) will promote better outcomes for local and global biodiversity. In turn, concerns are mounting about how to feed the world, given increasing demands for food. In this review, I evaluate the land-sparing/land-sharing framework--does the framework stimulate research and policy that can reconcile agricultural land use with biodiversity conservation, or is a revised framing needed? I review (1) the ecological evidence in favor of sparing versus sharing; (2) the evidence from land-use change studies that assesses whether a relationship exists between agricultural intensification and land sparing; and (3) how that relationship may be affected by socioeconomic and political factors. To address the trade-off between biodiversity conservation and food production, I then ask which forms of agricultural intensification can best feed the world now and in the future. On the basis of my review, I suggest that the dichotomy of the land-sparing/land-sharing framework limits the realm of future possibilities to two, largely undesirable, options for conservation. Both large, protected regions and favorable surrounding matrices are needed to promote biodiversity conservation; they work synergistically and are not mutually exclusive. A "both-and" framing of large protected areas surrounded by a wildlife-friendly matrix suggests different research priorities from the "either-or" framing of sparing versus sharing. Furthermore, wildlife-friendly farming methods such as agroecology may be best adapted to provide food for the world's hungry people. © 2015 New York Academy of Sciences.

  3. Increasing participation in incentive programs for biodiversity conservation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sorice, Michael G; Oh, Chi-Ok; Gartner, Todd; Snieckus, Mary; Johnson, Rhett; Donlan, C Josh

    2013-07-01

    Engaging private landowners in conservation activities for imperiled species is critical to maintaining and enhancing biodiversity. Market-based approaches can incentivize conservation behaviors on private lands by shifting the benefit-cost ratio of engaging in activities that result in net conservation benefits for target species. In the United States and elsewhere, voluntary conservation agreements with financial incentives are becoming an increasingly common strategy. While the influence of program design and delivery of voluntary conservation programs is often overlooked, these aspects are critical to achieving the necessary participation to attain landscape-scale outcomes. Using a sample of family-forest landowners in the southeast United States, we show how preferences for participation in a conservation program to protect an at-risk species, the gopher tortoise (Gopherus polyphemus), are related to program structure, delivery, and perceived efficacy. Landowners were most sensitive to programs that are highly controlling, require permanent conservation easements, and put landowners at risk for future regulation. Programs designed with greater levels of compensation and that support landowners' autonomy to make land management decisions can increase participation and increase landowner acceptance of program components that are generally unfavorable, like long-term contracts and permanent easements. There is an inherent trade-off between maximizing participation and maximizing the conservation benefits when designing a conservation incentive program. For conservation programs targeting private lands to achieve landscape-level benefits, they must attract a critical level of participation that creates a connected mosaic of conservation benefits. Yet, programs with attributes that strive to maximize conservation benefits within a single agreement (and reduce risks of failure) are likely to have lower participation, and thus lower landscape benefits. Achieving

  4. Combining endangered plants and animals as surrogates to identify priority conservation areas in Yunnan, China

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Feiling; Hu, Jinming; Wu, Ruidong

    2016-08-01

    Suitable surrogates are critical for identifying optimal priority conservation areas (PCAs) to protect regional biodiversity. This study explored the efficiency of using endangered plants and animals as surrogates for identifying PCAs at the county level in Yunnan, southwest China. We ran the Dobson algorithm under three surrogate scenarios at 75% and 100% conservation levels and identified four types of PCAs. Assessment of the protection efficiencies of the four types of PCAs showed that endangered plants had higher surrogacy values than endangered animals but that the two were not substitutable; coupled endangered plants and animals as surrogates yielded a higher surrogacy value than endangered plants or animals as surrogates; the plant-animal priority areas (PAPAs) was the optimal among the four types of PCAs for conserving both endangered plants and animals in Yunnan. PAPAs could well represent overall species diversity distribution patterns and overlap with critical biogeographical regions in Yunnan. Fourteen priority units in PAPAs should be urgently considered as optimizing Yunnan’s protected area system. The spatial pattern of PAPAs at the 100% conservation level could be conceptualized into three connected conservation belts, providing a valuable reference for optimizing the layout of the in situ protected area system in Yunnan.

  5. Regional Conservation Status of Scleractinian Coral Biodiversity in the Republic of the Marshall Islands

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zoe Richards

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available Preventing the loss of biodiversity is a major challenge in mega-diverse ecosystems such as coral reefs where there is a critical shortage of baseline demographic data. Threatened species assessments play a valuable role in guiding conservation action to manage and mitigate biodiversity loss, but they must be undertaken with precise information at an appropriate spatial scale to provide accurate classifications. Here we explore the regional conservation status of scleractinian corals on isolated Pacific Ocean atolls in the Republic of the Marshall Islands. We compile an integrated regional species list based upon new and historical records, and compare how well the regional threat classifications reflect species level priorities at a global scale. A similar proportion of the 240 species of hard coral recorded in the current survey are classified as Vulnerable at the regional scale as the global scale using the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN Red List criteria (23% and 20% respectively, however there are distinct differences in the composition of species. When local abundance data is taken into account, a far greater proportion of the regional diversity (up to 80% may face an elevated risk of local extinction. These results suggest coral communities on isolated Pacific coral reefs, which are often predicted to be at low risk, are still vulnerable due to the small and fragmented nature of their populations. This reinforces that to adequately protect biodiversity, ongoing threatened species monitoring and the documentation of species-level changes in abundance and distribution is imperative.

  6. Frames of Scale Challenges in Finnish and Greek Biodiversity Conservation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Evangelia Apostolopoulou

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available Global conservation expansion has been associated with significant changes in cross-scale interactions and in the discourses surrounding them engendering new scale challenges in the field of biodiversity conservation. In this paper, we analyze frames of scale challenges by drawing on evidence from eight focus groups of stakeholders and scientists from Greece and Finland. By following a systematic frame analysis we found three dominant frames. First, framing scale challenges as mainly derived from knowledge gaps regarding ecological scale emphasizes the scale problems occurring when only limited consideration is given to the scale-dependence of ecological phenomena. This prioritizes the formulation of scientifically informed conservation policies, discounting the importance of governance by concentrating on specialized environmental administrations. Second, framing scale challenges as stemming from limited fit highlights the scale problems caused by discrepancies in the alignment of natural and social scales and underlines the need to optimize the match between ecological and governance levels with more or less fixed boundaries. Third, framing scale challenges as primarily derived from inequalities in existing power relationships and learning processes emphasizes scale problems resulting when the dominant perception of scale is seen as a neutral, technical issue. This calls for investigations focused explicitly on how conservation scaling contributes to the production of new social-ecological entities in space and time. Dialogues between aspects of the different frames offer a potential path toward deliberative learning aimed at resolving current contradictions in the spatial patterning of human-environment interactions produced by biodiversity conservation.

  7. Biodiversity conservation in agriculture requires a multi-scale approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gonthier, David J; Ennis, Katherine K; Farinas, Serge; Hsieh, Hsun-Yi; Iverson, Aaron L; Batáry, Péter; Rudolphi, Jörgen; Tscharntke, Teja; Cardinale, Bradley J; Perfecto, Ivette

    2014-09-22

    Biodiversity loss--one of the most prominent forms of modern environmental change--has been heavily driven by terrestrial habitat loss and, in particular, the spread and intensification of agriculture. Expanding agricultural land-use has led to the search for strong conservation strategies, with some suggesting that biodiversity conservation in agriculture is best maximized by reducing local management intensity, such as fertilizer and pesticide application. Others highlight the importance of landscape-level approaches that incorporate natural or semi-natural areas in landscapes surrounding farms. Here, we show that both of these practices are valuable to the conservation of biodiversity, and that either local or landscape factors can be most crucial to conservation planning depending on which types of organisms one wishes to save. We performed a quantitative review of 266 observations taken from 31 studies that compared the impacts of localized (within farm) management strategies and landscape complexity (around farms) on the richness and abundance of plant, invertebrate and vertebrate species in agro-ecosystems. While both factors significantly impacted species richness, the richness of sessile plants increased with less-intensive local management, but did not significantly respond to landscape complexity. By contrast, the richness of mobile vertebrates increased with landscape complexity, but did not significantly increase with less-intensive local management. Invertebrate richness and abundance responded to both factors. Our analyses point to clear differences in how various groups of organisms respond to differing scales of management, and suggest that preservation of multiple taxonomic groups will require multiple scales of conservation. © 2014 The Author(s) Published by the Royal Society. All rights reserved.

  8. Assessing the Cost of Global Biodiversity and Conservation Knowledge.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Diego Juffe-Bignoli

    Full Text Available Knowledge products comprise assessments of authoritative information supported by standards, governance, quality control, data, tools, and capacity building mechanisms. Considerable resources are dedicated to developing and maintaining knowledge products for biodiversity conservation, and they are widely used to inform policy and advise decision makers and practitioners. However, the financial cost of delivering this information is largely undocumented. We evaluated the costs and funding sources for developing and maintaining four global biodiversity and conservation knowledge products: The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species, the IUCN Red List of Ecosystems, Protected Planet, and the World Database of Key Biodiversity Areas. These are secondary data sets, built on primary data collected by extensive networks of expert contributors worldwide. We estimate that US$160 million (range: US$116-204 million, plus 293 person-years of volunteer time (range: 278-308 person-years valued at US$ 14 million (range US$12-16 million, were invested in these four knowledge products between 1979 and 2013. More than half of this financing was provided through philanthropy, and nearly three-quarters was spent on personnel costs. The estimated annual cost of maintaining data and platforms for three of these knowledge products (excluding the IUCN Red List of Ecosystems for which annual costs were not possible to estimate for 2013 is US$6.5 million in total (range: US$6.2-6.7 million. We estimated that an additional US$114 million will be needed to reach pre-defined baselines of data coverage for all the four knowledge products, and that once achieved, annual maintenance costs will be approximately US$12 million. These costs are much lower than those to maintain many other, similarly important, global knowledge products. Ensuring that biodiversity and conservation knowledge products are sufficiently up to date, comprehensive and accurate is fundamental to inform

  9. Evaluating biodiversity conservation around a large Sumatran protected area.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Linkie, Matthew; Smith, Robert J; Zhu, Yu; Martyr, Deborah J; Suedmeyer, Beth; Pramono, Joko; Leader-Williams, Nigel

    2008-06-01

    Many of the large, donor-funded community-based conservation projects that seek to reduce biodiversity loss in the tropics have been unsuccessful. There is, therefore, a need for empirical evaluations to identify the driving factors and to provide evidence that supports the development of context-specific conservation projects. We used a quantitative approach to measure, post hoc, the effectiveness of a US$19 million Integrated Conservation and Development Project (ICDP) that sought to reduce biodiversity loss through the development of villages bordering Kerinci Seblat National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site in Indonesia. We focused on the success of the ICDP component that disbursed a total of US$1.5 million through development grants to 66 villages in return for their commitment to stop illegally clearing the forest. To investigate whether the ICDP lowered deforestation rates in focal villages, we selected a subset of non-ICDP villages that had similar physical and socioeconomic features and compared their respective deforestation rates. Village participation in the ICDP and its development schemes had no effect on deforestation. Instead, accessible areas where village land-tenure had been undermined by the designation of selective-logging concessions tended to have the highest deforestation rates. Our results indicate that the goal of the ICDP was not met and, furthermore, suggest that both law enforcement inside the park and local property rights outside the park need to be strengthened. Our results also emphasize the importance of quantitative approaches in helping to inform successful and cost-effective strategies for tropical biodiversity conservation.

  10. Key role for nuclear energy in global biodiversity conservation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brook, Barry W; Bradshaw, Corey J A

    2015-06-01

    Modern society uses massive amounts of energy. Usage rises as population and affluence increase, and energy production and use often have an impact on biodiversity or natural areas. To avoid a business-as-usual dependence on coal, oil, and gas over the coming decades, society must map out a future energy mix that incorporates alternative sources. This exercise can lead to radically different opinions on what a sustainable energy portfolio might entail, so an objective assessment of the relative costs and benefits of different energy sources is required. We evaluated the land use, emissions, climate, and cost implications of 3 published but divergent storylines for future energy production, none of which was optimal for all environmental and economic indicators. Using multicriteria decision-making analysis, we ranked 7 major electricity-generation sources (coal, gas, nuclear, biomass, hydro, wind, and solar) based on costs and benefits and tested the sensitivity of the rankings to biases stemming from contrasting philosophical ideals. Irrespective of weightings, nuclear and wind energy had the highest benefit-to-cost ratio. Although the environmental movement has historically rejected the nuclear energy option, new-generation reactor technologies that fully recycle waste and incorporate passive safety systems might resolve their concerns and ought to be more widely understood. Because there is no perfect energy source however, conservation professionals ultimately need to take an evidence-based approach to consider carefully the integrated effects of energy mixes on biodiversity conservation. Trade-offs and compromises are inevitable and require advocating energy mixes that minimize net environmental damage. Society cannot afford to risk wholesale failure to address energy-related biodiversity impacts because of preconceived notions and ideals. © 2014 The Authors Conservation Biology published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. on behalf of Society for Conservation Biology.

  11. Cheap and Nasty? The Potential Perils of Using Management Costs to Identify Global Conservation Priorities

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCreless, Erin; Visconti, Piero; Carwardine, Josie; Wilcox, Chris; Smith, Robert J.

    2013-01-01

    The financial cost of biodiversity conservation varies widely around the world and such costs should be considered when identifying countries to best focus conservation investments. Previous global prioritizations have been based on global models for protected area management costs, but this metric may be related to other factors that negatively influence the effectiveness and social impacts of conservation. Here we investigate such relationships and first show that countries with low predicted costs are less politically stable. Local support and capacity can mitigate the impacts of such instability, but we also found that these countries have less civil society involvement in conservation. Therefore, externally funded projects in these countries must rely on government agencies for implementation. This can be problematic, as our analyses show that governments in countries with low predicted costs score poorly on indices of corruption, bureaucratic quality and human rights. Taken together, our results demonstrate that using national-level estimates for protected area management costs to set global conservation priorities is simplistic, as projects in apparently low-cost countries are less likely to succeed and more likely to have negative impacts on people. We identify the need for an improved approach to develop global conservation cost metrics that better capture the true costs of avoiding or overcoming such problems. Critically, conservation scientists must engage with practitioners to better understand and implement context-specific solutions. This approach assumes that measures of conservation costs, like measures of conservation value, are organization specific, and would bring a much-needed focus on reducing the negative impacts of conservation to develop projects that benefit people and biodiversity. PMID:24260502

  12. Cheap and nasty? The potential perils of using management costs to identify global conservation priorities.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Erin McCreless

    Full Text Available The financial cost of biodiversity conservation varies widely around the world and such costs should be considered when identifying countries to best focus conservation investments. Previous global prioritizations have been based on global models for protected area management costs, but this metric may be related to other factors that negatively influence the effectiveness and social impacts of conservation. Here we investigate such relationships and first show that countries with low predicted costs are less politically stable. Local support and capacity can mitigate the impacts of such instability, but we also found that these countries have less civil society involvement in conservation. Therefore, externally funded projects in these countries must rely on government agencies for implementation. This can be problematic, as our analyses show that governments in countries with low predicted costs score poorly on indices of corruption, bureaucratic quality and human rights. Taken together, our results demonstrate that using national-level estimates for protected area management costs to set global conservation priorities is simplistic, as projects in apparently low-cost countries are less likely to succeed and more likely to have negative impacts on people. We identify the need for an improved approach to develop global conservation cost metrics that better capture the true costs of avoiding or overcoming such problems. Critically, conservation scientists must engage with practitioners to better understand and implement context-specific solutions. This approach assumes that measures of conservation costs, like measures of conservation value, are organization specific, and would bring a much-needed focus on reducing the negative impacts of conservation to develop projects that benefit people and biodiversity.

  13. Cheap and nasty? The potential perils of using management costs to identify global conservation priorities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCreless, Erin; Visconti, Piero; Carwardine, Josie; Wilcox, Chris; Smith, Robert J

    2013-01-01

    The financial cost of biodiversity conservation varies widely around the world and such costs should be considered when identifying countries to best focus conservation investments. Previous global prioritizations have been based on global models for protected area management costs, but this metric may be related to other factors that negatively influence the effectiveness and social impacts of conservation. Here we investigate such relationships and first show that countries with low predicted costs are less politically stable. Local support and capacity can mitigate the impacts of such instability, but we also found that these countries have less civil society involvement in conservation. Therefore, externally funded projects in these countries must rely on government agencies for implementation. This can be problematic, as our analyses show that governments in countries with low predicted costs score poorly on indices of corruption, bureaucratic quality and human rights. Taken together, our results demonstrate that using national-level estimates for protected area management costs to set global conservation priorities is simplistic, as projects in apparently low-cost countries are less likely to succeed and more likely to have negative impacts on people. We identify the need for an improved approach to develop global conservation cost metrics that better capture the true costs of avoiding or overcoming such problems. Critically, conservation scientists must engage with practitioners to better understand and implement context-specific solutions. This approach assumes that measures of conservation costs, like measures of conservation value, are organization specific, and would bring a much-needed focus on reducing the negative impacts of conservation to develop projects that benefit people and biodiversity.

  14. The Samarco Disaster in Brazil: challenges for biodiversity conservation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Haruf Salmen Espindola

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available On November 5, 2015, Brazil and the world noticed the environmental disaster caused by the disruption of Fundão dam (Samarco / Vale / BHP Billiton in Mariana, Minas Gerais. The disaster's impact was not restricted to dam’s immediately downstream areas, where caused destruction of human settlements, but also impacted waterways, farmland, economic activities, drinking water supply to cities and biodiversity. The State Park of Rio Doce (PERD, the main remnant of the Atlantic Forest from Minas Gerais state faced a threat not predicted in his management plan. So, this article is dedicated to the history and importance of the PERD, to the Samarco/Vale/BHP disaster and to impacts on this Conservation Unit. Therefore, it discusses disaster impacts to human life and biodiversity, because ecological conditions even imply on opportunities and obstacles to Social Processes.

  15. Effectiveness of amphibians as biodiversity surrogates in pond conservation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ilg, Christiane; Oertli, Beat

    2017-04-01

    Amphibian decline has led to worldwide conservation efforts, including the identification and designation of sites for their protection. These sites could also play an important role in the conservation of other freshwater taxa. In 89 ponds in Switzerland, we assessed the effectiveness of amphibians as a surrogate for 4 taxonomic groups that occur in the same freshwater ecosystems as amphibians: dragonflies, aquatic beetles, aquatic gastropods, and aquatic plants. The ponds were all of high value for amphibian conservation. Cross-taxon correlations were tested for species richness and conservation value, and Mantel tests were used to investigate community congruence. Species richness, conservation value, and community composition of amphibians were weakly congruent with these measures for the other taxonomic groups. Paired comparisons for the 5 groups considered showed that for each metric, amphibians had the lowest degree of congruence. Our results imply that site designation for amphibian conservation will not necessarily provide protection for freshwater biodiversity as a whole. To provide adequate protection for freshwater species, we recommend other taxonomic groups be considered in addition to amphibians in the prioritization and site designation process. © 2016 Society for Conservation Biology.

  16. Conservation Priorities for Terrestrial Birds in the Northeastern United States

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kenneth V. Rosenberg; Jeffrey V. Wells

    2005-01-01

    As part of the Partners in Flight (PIF) bird-conservation planning process, we assessed breeding land bird species according to seven categories of population vulnerability to derive a priority species pool in each of 12 physiographic areas that overlap the northeastern U.S. We then grouped species into the following habitat-species suites: (1) boreal-mountaintop...

  17. How Should Beta-Diversity Inform Biodiversity Conservation?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Socolar, Jacob B; Gilroy, James J; Kunin, William E; Edwards, David P

    2016-01-01

    To design robust protected area networks, accurately measure species losses, or understand the processes that maintain species diversity, conservation science must consider the organization of biodiversity in space. Central is beta-diversity--the component of regional diversity that accumulates from compositional differences between local species assemblages. We review how beta-diversity is impacted by human activities, including farming, selective logging, urbanization, species invasions, overhunting, and climate change. Beta-diversity increases, decreases, or remains unchanged by these impacts, depending on the balance of processes that cause species composition to become more different (biotic heterogenization) or more similar (biotic homogenization) between sites. While maintaining high beta-diversity is not always a desirable conservation outcome, understanding beta-diversity is essential for protecting regional diversity and can directly assist conservation planning. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  18. How effective are biodiversity conservation payments in Mexico?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Costedoat, Sébastien; Corbera, Esteve; Ezzine-de-Blas, Driss; Honey-Rosés, Jordi; Baylis, Kathy; Castillo-Santiago, Miguel Angel

    2015-01-01

    We assess the additional forest cover protected by 13 rural communities located in the southern state of Chiapas, Mexico, as a result of the economic incentives received through the country's national program of payments for biodiversity conservation. We use spatially explicit data at the intra-community level to define a credible counterfactual of conservation outcomes. We use covariate-matching specifications associated with spatially explicit variables and difference-in-difference estimators to determine the treatment effect. We estimate that the additional conservation represents between 12 and 14.7 percent of forest area enrolled in the program in comparison to control areas. Despite this high degree of additionality, we also observe lack of compliance in some plots participating in the PES program. This lack of compliance casts doubt on the ability of payments alone to guarantee long-term additionality in context of high deforestation rates, even with an augmented program budget or extension of participation to communities not yet enrolled.

  19. Identifying and managing the conflicts between agriculture and biodiversity conservation in Europe–A review

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Henle, K.; Alard, D.; Clitherow, J.; Cobb, P.; Firbank, L.G.; Kull, T.; McCracken, D.; Moritz, R.F.A.; Niemelä, J.; Rebane, M.; Wascher, D.M.; Watt, A.; Young, J.

    2008-01-01

    This paper reviews conflicts between biodiversity conservation and agricultural activities in agricultural landscapes and evaluates strategies to reconcile such conflicts. Firstly, a historical perspective on the development of conflicts related to biodiversity in agricultural landscapes is

  20. Effects of budget constraints on conservation network design for biodiversity and ecosystem services

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Remme, Roy P.; Schröter, Matthias

    2016-01-01

    Limited budgets and budget cuts hamper the development of effective biodiversity conservation networks. Optimizing the spatial configuration of conservation networks given such budget constraints remains challenging. Systematic conservation planning addresses this challenge. Systematic

  1. Testing the Efficacy of Global Biodiversity Hotspots for Insect Conservation: The Case of South African Katydids

    OpenAIRE

    Bazelet, Corinna S.; Thompson, Aileen C.; Naskrecki, Piotr

    2016-01-01

    The use of endemism and vascular plants only for biodiversity hotspot delineation has long been contested. Few studies have focused on the efficacy of global biodiversity hotspots for the conservation of insects, an important, abundant, and often ignored component of biodiversity. We aimed to test five alternative diversity measures for hotspot delineation and examine the efficacy of biodiversity hotspots for conserving a non-typical target organism, South African katydids. Using a 1° fishnet...

  2. Re-thinking on the role of business in biodiversity conservation

    OpenAIRE

    Barna, Cristina

    2008-01-01

    Today we face the challenge of building biodiversity business. There is a need to develop new business models and market mechanisms for biodiversity conservation, while also raising awareness and persuading the public and policy-makers that biodiversity can be conserved on a commercial basis. In this context the present paper is analyzing the arise of a new economic concept ‘business biodiversity’, focusing on the strategic importance of biodiversity for business and also presenting some busi...

  3. The role of trade-offs in biodiversity conservation planning: linking ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Unknown

    [Faith D P and Walker P A 2002 The role of trade-offs in biodiversity conservation planning: linking local management, regional planning and global conservation efforts; J. Biosci. 27 (Suppl. 2) 393–407]. 1. Introduction. A reality of biodiversity conservation planning is that it requires taking into account many things other than ...

  4. Social values and biodiversity conservation in a dynamic world.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dietsch, Alia M; Teel, Tara L; Manfredo, Michael J

    2016-12-01

    Understanding what shape values (which ultimately shape human behavior) will help improve the effectiveness of conservation solutions that depend on public support. To contribute to this understanding, we investigated the influence of societal-level changes, such as modernization, on values in a multilevel framework. We collected survey responses (n = 4183) to questionnaires mailed to a random selection of households within each county in Washington (U.S.A.) (response rate 32%). We used multilevel modeling to determine the relationship between modernization (e.g., county-level urbanization, wealth, and education) and wildlife value orientations (values that shape thought about wildlife) while controlling for individual-level sociodemographics. We then explored how values influence conservation support at different levels (e.g., individual and county) and how values explain conservation support in a case study of public responses to wolf (Canis lupis) recovery. We found positive associations between county-level examples of modernization and mutualism (a wildlife value orientation that prioritizes the perceived needs of wildlife) independent of a respondent's sociodemographics, and negative associations between modernization and domination (a wildlife value orientation that prioritizes human needs). Our results suggest that context has an additive impact on one's values; certain locations exhibited domination values, whereas others exhibited a mix of value types. This finding is important because actions that restrict human interests to promote biodiversity were negatively associated with domination and positively associated with mutualism. In the wolf case study, mutualism was strongly correlated with less social conflict over wolf recovery in many, but not all, counties (e.g., Pearson's r correlation = 0.59 in one county and a nonsignificant correlation in another). Our findings suggest that modernization operates on values within a state with implications for

  5. Closing yield gaps: perils and possibilities for biodiversity conservation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Phalan, Ben; Green, Rhys; Balmford, Andrew

    2014-04-05

    Increasing agricultural productivity to 'close yield gaps' creates both perils and possibilities for biodiversity conservation. Yield increases often have negative impacts on species within farmland, but at the same time could potentially make it more feasible to minimize further cropland expansion into natural habitats. We combine global data on yield gaps, projected future production of maize, rice and wheat, the distributions of birds and their estimated sensitivity to changes in crop yields to map where it might be most beneficial for bird conservation to close yield gaps as part of a land-sparing strategy, and where doing so might be most damaging. Closing yield gaps to attainable levels to meet projected demand in 2050 could potentially help spare an area equivalent to that of the Indian subcontinent. Increasing yields this much on existing farmland would inevitably reduce its biodiversity, and therefore we advocate efforts both to constrain further increases in global food demand, and to identify the least harmful ways of increasing yields. The land-sparing potential of closing yield gaps will not be realized without specific mechanisms to link yield increases to habitat protection (and restoration), and therefore we suggest that conservationists, farmers, crop scientists and policy-makers collaborate to explore promising mechanisms.

  6. The identification of sites of biodiversity conservation significance: progress with the application of a global standard

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M.N. Foster

    2012-08-01

    Full Text Available As a global community, we have a responsibility to ensure the long-term future of our natural heritage. As part of this, it is incumbent upon us to do all that we can to reverse the current trend of biodiversity loss, using all available tools at our disposal. One effective mean is safeguarding of those sites that are highest global priority for the conservation of biodiversity, whether through formal protected areas, community managed reserves, multiple-use areas, or other means. This special issue of the Journal of Threatened Taxa examines the application of the Key Biodiversity Area (KBA approach to identifying such sites. Given the global mandate expressed through policy instruments such as the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD, the KBA approach can help countries meet obligations in an efficient and transparent manner. KBA methodology follows the well-established general principles of vulnerability and irreplaceability, and while it aims to be a globally standardized approach, it recognizes the fundamental need for the process to be led at local and national levels. In this series of papers the application of the KBA approach is explored in seven countries or regions: the Caribbean, Indo-Burma, Japan, Macedonia, Mediterranean Algeria, the Philippines and the Upper Guinea region of West Africa. This introductory article synthesizes some of the common main findings and provides a comparison of key summary statistics.

  7. Conservation covenants on private land: issues with measuring and achieving biodiversity outcomes in Australia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fitzsimons, James A; Carr, C Ben

    2014-09-01

    Conservation covenants and easements have become essential tools to secure biodiversity outcomes on private land, and to assist in meeting international protection targets. In Australia, the number and spatial area of conservation covenants has grown significantly in the past decade. Yet there has been little research or detailed policy analysis of conservation covenanting in Australia. We sought to determine how conservation covenanting agencies were measuring the biodiversity conservation outcomes achieved on covenanted properties, and factors inhibiting or contributing to measuring these outcomes. In addition, we also investigated the drivers and constraints associated with actually delivering the biodiversity outcomes, drawing on detailed input from covenanting programs. Although all conservation covenanting programs had the broad aim of maintaining or improving biodiversity in their covenants in the long term, the specific stated objectives of conservation covenanting programs varied. Programs undertook monitoring and evaluation in different ways and at different spatial and temporal scales. Thus, it was difficult to determine the extent Australian conservation covenanting agencies were measuring the biodiversity conservation outcomes achieved on covenanted properties on a national scale. Lack of time available to covenantors to undertake management was one of the biggest impediments to achieving biodiversity conservation outcomes. A lack of financial resources and human capital to monitor, knowing what to monitor, inconsistent monitoring methodologies, a lack of benchmark data, and length of time to achieve outcomes were all considered potential barriers to monitoring the biodiversity conservation outcomes of conservation covenants.

  8. Science priorities for seamounts: research links to conservation and management.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Malcolm R Clark

    Full Text Available Seamounts shape the topography of all ocean basins and can be hotspots of biological activity in the deep sea. The Census of Marine Life on Seamounts (CenSeam was a field program that examined seamounts as part of the global Census of Marine Life (CoML initiative from 2005 to 2010. CenSeam progressed seamount science by collating historical data, collecting new data, undertaking regional and global analyses of seamount biodiversity, mapping species and habitat distributions, challenging established paradigms of seamount ecology, developing new hypotheses, and documenting the impacts of human activities on seamounts. However, because of the large number of seamounts globally, much about the structure, function and connectivity of seamount ecosystems remains unexplored and unknown. Continual, and potentially increasing, threats to seamount resources from fishing and seabed mining are creating a pressing demand for research to inform conservation and management strategies. To meet this need, intensive science effort in the following areas will be needed: 1 Improved physical and biological data; of particular importance is information on seamount location, physical characteristics (e.g. habitat heterogeneity and complexity, more complete and intensive biodiversity inventories, and increased understanding of seamount connectivity and faunal dispersal; 2 New human impact data; these shall encompass better studies on the effects of human activities on seamount ecosystems, as well as monitoring long-term changes in seamount assemblages following impacts (e.g. recovery; 3 Global data repositories; there is a pressing need for more comprehensive fisheries catch and effort data, especially on the high seas, and compilation or maintenance of geological and biodiversity databases that underpin regional and global analyses; 4 Application of support tools in a data-poor environment; conservation and management will have to increasingly rely on predictive

  9. Science priorities for seamounts: research links to conservation and management.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clark, Malcolm R; Schlacher, Thomas A; Rowden, Ashley A; Stocks, Karen I; Consalvey, Mireille

    2012-01-01

    Seamounts shape the topography of all ocean basins and can be hotspots of biological activity in the deep sea. The Census of Marine Life on Seamounts (CenSeam) was a field program that examined seamounts as part of the global Census of Marine Life (CoML) initiative from 2005 to 2010. CenSeam progressed seamount science by collating historical data, collecting new data, undertaking regional and global analyses of seamount biodiversity, mapping species and habitat distributions, challenging established paradigms of seamount ecology, developing new hypotheses, and documenting the impacts of human activities on seamounts. However, because of the large number of seamounts globally, much about the structure, function and connectivity of seamount ecosystems remains unexplored and unknown. Continual, and potentially increasing, threats to seamount resources from fishing and seabed mining are creating a pressing demand for research to inform conservation and management strategies. To meet this need, intensive science effort in the following areas will be needed: 1) Improved physical and biological data; of particular importance is information on seamount location, physical characteristics (e.g. habitat heterogeneity and complexity), more complete and intensive biodiversity inventories, and increased understanding of seamount connectivity and faunal dispersal; 2) New human impact data; these shall encompass better studies on the effects of human activities on seamount ecosystems, as well as monitoring long-term changes in seamount assemblages following impacts (e.g. recovery); 3) Global data repositories; there is a pressing need for more comprehensive fisheries catch and effort data, especially on the high seas, and compilation or maintenance of geological and biodiversity databases that underpin regional and global analyses; 4) Application of support tools in a data-poor environment; conservation and management will have to increasingly rely on predictive modelling

  10. Science Priorities for Seamounts: Research Links to Conservation and Management

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clark, Malcolm R.; Schlacher, Thomas A.; Rowden, Ashley A.; Stocks, Karen I.; Consalvey, Mireille

    2012-01-01

    Seamounts shape the topography of all ocean basins and can be hotspots of biological activity in the deep sea. The Census of Marine Life on Seamounts (CenSeam) was a field program that examined seamounts as part of the global Census of Marine Life (CoML) initiative from 2005 to 2010. CenSeam progressed seamount science by collating historical data, collecting new data, undertaking regional and global analyses of seamount biodiversity, mapping species and habitat distributions, challenging established paradigms of seamount ecology, developing new hypotheses, and documenting the impacts of human activities on seamounts. However, because of the large number of seamounts globally, much about the structure, function and connectivity of seamount ecosystems remains unexplored and unknown. Continual, and potentially increasing, threats to seamount resources from fishing and seabed mining are creating a pressing demand for research to inform conservation and management strategies. To meet this need, intensive science effort in the following areas will be needed: 1) Improved physical and biological data; of particular importance is information on seamount location, physical characteristics (e.g. habitat heterogeneity and complexity), more complete and intensive biodiversity inventories, and increased understanding of seamount connectivity and faunal dispersal; 2) New human impact data; these shall encompass better studies on the effects of human activities on seamount ecosystems, as well as monitoring long-term changes in seamount assemblages following impacts (e.g. recovery); 3) Global data repositories; there is a pressing need for more comprehensive fisheries catch and effort data, especially on the high seas, and compilation or maintenance of geological and biodiversity databases that underpin regional and global analyses; 4) Application of support tools in a data-poor environment; conservation and management will have to increasingly rely on predictive modelling

  11. Conservation of biodiversity in the Sango Bay area, southern Uganda

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    A series of biodiversity and socio-economic surveys carried out in the Sango Bay area of southern Uganda revealed high biodiversity values for some taxa in some sites. Use of this biodiversity and reliance on it by local communities was widespread. Biodiversity scores were given to all species and these were coupled with ...

  12. Conservation Priorities for Tree Ferns (Cyatheaceae in Sri Lanka

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    R. H. G. Ranil

    2011-09-01

    Full Text Available Diversity, phytogeography and conservation status of Sri Lankan tree-ferns are discussed in this paper. The family Cyatheaceae is represented by eight taxa (seven species and one doubtful variety in Sri Lanka with a high rate of endemism of 75%. Apart from Cyathea walkerae and C. gigantea, the other species are restricted to geographically isolated areas in the country with limited population sizes. Fortunately, all Sri Lankan species of Cyathea occur within the protected areas of the wet zone. However, ex situ conservation is limited to C. walkerae and C. crinita at Botanic Gardens in Hakgala. Despite the family being listed in Annex II of CITES, its species have not yet been assessed in Sri Lanka for the Red Listing criteria. Identification of the nature and level of threat to Sri Lankan Cyathea species is therefore a major priority, followed by the monitoring of populations in situ in protected areas in the wet zone. Ex situ conservation of rare species and cultivation of Cyathea species from spores have also been identified as priority areas. A strong programme should be developed with the National Herbarium to explore little known forest patches in the wet zone to enhance our knowledge of Cyathea species in Sri Lanka. Such information will provide a strong basis for preparing a conservation and management plan for tree-ferns in the country.

  13. Stakeholder Visions for Biodiversity Conservation in Developing Countries

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ademola A. Adenle

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available The 2014 Conference of the Parties (COP 12 for the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD was another step on the road to achieving the Aichi Targets the CBD agreed in 2010. It was also a key step on the way to making progress towards the vision of a more balanced relationship between people and the rest of biodiversity by 2050. Many key issues were left for this COP by negotiators from COP 11 and earlier meetings; such as settling financial issues, articulating clearly the Aichi Targets for national implementation by 2020, or providing clear guidance on capacity-building for developing states. This paper utilizes 22 stakeholder interviews taken at the 2012 Hyderabad COP to develop discussion of ongoing issues in the CBD negotiations. These interviews yielded a number of tractable policy opportunities available for the 2014 Conference to create significant space for developing countries to contribute effectively to global achievement of the Aichi Targets. Breakthroughs and developments at the COP, despite the inevitability of some difficult discussions, will be provided by developing country perspectives. Despite that potential traction, Ministers at the high-level segment noted that progress towards the Aichi targets is insufficient and recognizing there was still much to do on resource mobilization, reaffirmed their commitment to mobilize financial resources from all sources for the effective implementation of the Strategic Plan for Biodiversity 2011–2020. As we enter the second half of the 2011–2020 decade, developing countries must be placed at the center of efforts to improve sustainable use, conservation and benefit sharing of biodiversity around the world.

  14. Sustainable utilization and conservation of plant biodiversity in montane ecosystems: the western Himalayas as a case study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Khan, Shujaul Mulk; Page, Sue E; Ahmad, Habib; Harper, David M

    2013-08-01

    Conservation of the unique biodiversity of mountain ecosystems needs trans-disciplinary approaches to succeed in a crowded colloquial world. Geographers, conservationists, ecologists and social scientists have, in the past, had the same conservation goals but have tended to work independently. In this review, the need to integrate different conservation criteria and methodologies is discussed. New criteria are offered for prioritizing species and habitats for conservation in montane ecosystems that combine both ecological and social data. Ecological attributes of plant species, analysed through robust community statistical packages, provide unbiased classifications of species assemblages and environmental biodiversity gradients and yield importance value indices (IVIs). Surveys of local communities' utilization of the vegetation provides use values (UVs). This review suggests a new means of assessing anthropogenic pressure on plant biodiversity at both species and community levels by integrating IVI and UV data sets in a combined analysis. Mountain ecosystems are hot spots for plant conservation efforts because they hold a high overall plant diversity as communities replace each other along altitudinal and climatic gradients, including a high proportion of endemic species. This review contributes an enhanced understanding of (1) plant diversity in mountain ecosystems with special reference to the western Himalayas; (2) ethnobotanical and ecosystem service values of mountain vegetation within the context of anthropogenic impacts; and (3) local and regional plant conservation strategies and priorities.

  15. Incorporating evolutionary history into conservation planning in biodiversity hotspots.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Buerki, Sven; Callmander, Martin W; Bachman, Steven; Moat, Justin; Labat, Jean-Noël; Forest, Félix

    2015-02-19

    There is increased evidence that incorporating evolutionary history directly in conservation actions is beneficial, particularly given the likelihood that extinction is not random and that phylogenetic diversity (PD) is lost at higher rates than species diversity. This evidence is even more compelling in biodiversity hotspots, such as Madagascar, where less than 10% of the original vegetation remains. Here, we use the Leguminosae, an ecologically and economically important plant family, and a combination of phylogenetics and species distribution modelling, to assess biodiversity patterns and identify regions, coevolutionary processes and ecological factors that are important in shaping this diversity, especially during the Quaternary. We show evidence that species distribution and community PD are predicted by watershed boundaries, which enable the identification of a network of refugia and dispersal corridors that were perhaps important for maintaining community integrity during past climate change. Phylogenetically clustered communities are found in the southwest of the island at low elevation and share a suite of morphological characters (especially fruit morphology) indicative of coevolution with their main dispersers, the extinct and extant lemurs. Phylogenetically over-dispersed communities are found along the eastern coast at sea level and may have resulted from many independent dispersal events from the drier and more seasonal regions of Madagascar. © 2015 The Author(s) Published by the Royal Society. All rights reserved.

  16. Implications of human value shift and persistence for biodiversity conservation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Manfredo, Michael J; Teel, Tara L; Dietsch, Alia M

    2016-04-01

    Large-scale change in human values and associated behavior change is believed by some to be the ultimate solution to achieve global biodiversity conservation. Yet little is known about the dynamics of values. We contribute to this area of inquiry by examining the trajectory of values affecting views of wildlife in North America. Using data from a 19-state study in the United States and global data from the Schwartz Value Survey, we explored questions of value persistence and change and the nature of attitudinal responses regarding wildlife conservation issues. We found support, based on subjects' ancestry, for the supposition that domination is a prevalent American value orientation toward wildlife that has origins in European Judeo-Christian traditions. Independent of that effect, we also found indications of change. Modernization is contributing to a shift from domination to mutualism value orientations, which is fostering attitudes less centered on human interests and seemingly more consistent with a biocentric philosophy. Our findings suggest that if value shift could be achieved in a purposeful way, then significant and widespread behavior change believed necessary for long-term conservation success may indeed be possible. In particular, greater emphasis on mutualism values may help provide the context for more collaborative approaches to support future conservation efforts. However, given the societal forces at play, it is not at all clear that human-engineered value shift is tenable. Instead of developing strategies aimed at altering values, it may be more productive to create strategies that recognize and work within the boundaries of existing values. Whereas values appear to be in a period of flux, it will be difficult to predict future trends without a better understanding of value formation and shift, particularly under conditions of rapid social-ecological change. © 2016 Society for Conservation Biology.

  17. The role of trade-offs in biodiversity conservation planning: linking ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Unknown

    local management, regional planning and global conservation efforts .... conservation and the vertical axis indicates total amount of biodiversity protection “forgone” – not protected by .... tem services” that include such things as water quality,.

  18. Anthropogenic disturbances jeopardize biodiversity conservation within tropical rainforest reserves.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martínez-Ramos, Miguel; Ortiz-Rodríguez, Iván A; Piñero, Daniel; Dirzo, Rodolfo; Sarukhán, José

    2016-05-10

    Anthropogenic disturbances affecting tropical forest reserves have been documented, but their ecological long-term cumulative effects are poorly understood. Habitat fragmentation and defaunation are two major anthropogenic threats to the integrity of tropical reserves. Based on a long-term (four decades) study, we document how these disturbances synergistically disrupt ecological processes and imperil biodiversity conservation and ecosystem functioning at Los Tuxtlas, the northernmost tropical rainforest reserve in the Americas. Deforestation around this reserve has reduced the reserve to a medium-sized fragment (640 ha), leading to an increased frequency of canopy-gap formation. In addition, hunting and habitat loss have caused the decline or local extinction of medium and large herbivores. Combining empirical, experimental, and modeling approaches, we support the hypothesis that such disturbances produced a demographic explosion of the long-lived (≈120 y old, maximum height of 7 m) understory palm Astrocaryum mexicanum, whose population has increased from 1,243-4,058 adult individuals per hectare in only 39 y (annual growth rate of ca 3%). Faster gap formation increased understory light availability, enhancing seed production and the growth of immature palms, whereas release from mammalian herbivory and trampling increased survival of seedlings and juveniles. In turn, the palm's demographic explosion was followed by a reduction of tree species diversity, changing forest composition, altering the relative contribution of trees to forest biomass, and disrupting litterfall dynamics. We highlight how indirect anthropogenic disturbances (e.g., palm proliferation) on otherwise protected areas threaten tropical conservation, a phenomenon that is currently eroding the planet's richest repositories of biodiversity.

  19. Biodiversity conservation: The key is reducing meat consumption.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Machovina, Brian; Feeley, Kenneth J; Ripple, William J

    2015-12-01

    The consumption of animal-sourced food products by humans is one of the most powerful negative forces affecting the conservation of terrestrial ecosystems and biological diversity. Livestock production is the single largest driver of habitat loss, and both livestock and feedstock production are increasing in developing tropical countries where the majority of biological diversity resides. Bushmeat consumption in Africa and southeastern Asia, as well as the high growth-rate of per capita livestock consumption in China are of special concern. The projected land base required by 2050 to support livestock production in several megadiverse countries exceeds 30-50% of their current agricultural areas. Livestock production is also a leading cause of climate change, soil loss, water and nutrient pollution, and decreases of apex predators and wild herbivores, compounding pressures on ecosystems and biodiversity. It is possible to greatly reduce the impacts of animal product consumption by humans on natural ecosystems and biodiversity while meeting nutritional needs of people, including the projected 2-3 billion people to be added to human population. We suggest that impacts can be remediated through several solutions: (1) reducing demand for animal-based food products and increasing proportions of plant-based foods in diets, the latter ideally to a global average of 90% of food consumed; (2) replacing ecologically-inefficient ruminants (e.g. cattle, goats, sheep) and bushmeat with monogastrics (e.g. poultry, pigs), integrated aquaculture, and other more-efficient protein sources; and (3) reintegrating livestock production away from single-product, intensive, fossil-fuel based systems into diverse, coupled systems designed more closely around the structure and functions of ecosystems that conserve energy and nutrients. Such efforts would also impart positive impacts on human health through reduction of diseases of nutritional extravagance. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All

  20. Width of riparian buffer and structure of adjacent plantations influence occupancy of conservation priority birds

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roger W. Perry; T. Bently Wigley; M. Anthony Melchiors; Ronald E. Thill; Philip A. Tappe; Darren A. Miller

    2011-01-01

    Conservation of biodiversity on forest landscapes dominated by plantations has become an increasingly important topic, and opportunities to maintain or enhance biodiversity within these forests need to be recognized and applied. Riparian buffers of mature forest retained along streams in managed forest landscapes offer an opportunity to enhance biodiversity across...

  1. River Rehabilitation for Conservation of Fish Biodiversity in Monsoonal Asia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David Dudgeon

    2005-12-01

    Full Text Available Freshwater biodiversity is under threat worldwide, but the intensity of threat in the Oriental biogeographic region of tropical Asia is exceptional. Asia is the most densely populated region on Earth. Many rivers in that region are grossly polluted, and significant portions of their drainage basins and floodplains have been deforested or otherwise degraded. Flow regulation has been practiced for centuries, and thousands of dams have been constructed, with the result that most of the rivers are now dammed, often at several points along their course. Irrigation, hydropower, and flood security are among the perceived benefits. Recent water engineering projects in Asia have been exceptionally aggressive; they include the world's largest and tallest dams in China and a water transfer scheme intended to link India's major rivers. Some of these projects, i.e., those on the Mekong, have international ramifications that have yet to be fully played out. Overexploitation has exacerbated the effects of habitat alterations on riverine biodiversity, particularly that of fishes. Some fishery stocks have collapsed, and many fish and other vertebrate species are threatened with extinction. The pressure from growing impoverished human populations, increasingly concentrated in cities, has forced governments to focus on economic development rather than environmental protection and conservation. Although legislation has been introduced to control water pollution, which is a danger to human health. it is not explicitly intended to protect biodiversity. Where legislation has been enforced, it can be effective against point-source polluters, but it has not significantly reduced the huge quantities of organic pollution from agricultural and domestic sources that contaminate rivers such as the Ganges and Yangtze. River scientists in Asia appear to have had little influence on policy makers or the implementation of water development projects. Human demands from

  2. What Drives Biodiversity Conservation Effort in the Developing World? An analysis for Sub-Saharan Africa

    OpenAIRE

    Ariane Manuela Amin

    2012-01-01

    Biodiversity conservation in low-income economies is a vital issue and hence needs to be addressed for development and poverty eradication. A variety of empirical works exist on the subject, but the focus is often limited on the search for possible causes of biodiversity erosion. Research on the "driving forces" that influence biodiversity conservation effort is still largely missing, especially for developing countries. In this study, we seek to address this gap. We test, using different mod...

  3. Identifying Priority Areas for Conservation: A Global Assessment for Forest-Dependent Birds

    Science.gov (United States)

    Buchanan, Graeme M.; Donald, Paul F.; Butchart, Stuart H. M.

    2011-01-01

    Limited resources are available to address the world's growing environmental problems, requiring conservationists to identify priority sites for action. Using new distribution maps for all of the world's forest-dependent birds (60.6% of all bird species), we quantify the contribution of remaining forest to conserving global avian biodiversity. For each of the world's partly or wholly forested 5-km cells, we estimated an impact score of its contribution to the distribution of all the forest bird species estimated to occur within it, and so is proportional to the impact on the conservation status of the world's forest-dependent birds were the forest it contains lost. The distribution of scores was highly skewed, a very small proportion of cells having scores several orders of magnitude above the global mean. Ecoregions containing the highest values of this score included relatively species-poor islands such as Hawaii and Palau, the relatively species-rich islands of Indonesia and the Philippines, and the megadiverse Atlantic Forests and northern Andes of South America. Ecoregions with high impact scores and high deforestation rates (2000–2005) included montane forests in Cameroon and the Eastern Arc of Tanzania, although deforestation data were not available for all ecoregions. Ecoregions with high impact scores, high rates of recent deforestation and low coverage by the protected area network included Indonesia's Seram rain forests and the moist forests of Trinidad and Tobago. Key sites in these ecoregions represent some of the most urgent priorities for expansion of the global protected areas network to meet Convention on Biological Diversity targets to increase the proportion of land formally protected to 17% by 2020. Areas with high impact scores, rapid deforestation, low protection and high carbon storage values may represent significant opportunities for both biodiversity conservation and climate change mitigation, for example through Reducing Emissions from

  4. Identifying priority areas for conservation: a global assessment for forest-dependent birds.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Graeme M Buchanan

    Full Text Available Limited resources are available to address the world's growing environmental problems, requiring conservationists to identify priority sites for action. Using new distribution maps for all of the world's forest-dependent birds (60.6% of all bird species, we quantify the contribution of remaining forest to conserving global avian biodiversity. For each of the world's partly or wholly forested 5-km cells, we estimated an impact score of its contribution to the distribution of all the forest bird species estimated to occur within it, and so is proportional to the impact on the conservation status of the world's forest-dependent birds were the forest it contains lost. The distribution of scores was highly skewed, a very small proportion of cells having scores several orders of magnitude above the global mean. Ecoregions containing the highest values of this score included relatively species-poor islands such as Hawaii and Palau, the relatively species-rich islands of Indonesia and the Philippines, and the megadiverse Atlantic Forests and northern Andes of South America. Ecoregions with high impact scores and high deforestation rates (2000-2005 included montane forests in Cameroon and the Eastern Arc of Tanzania, although deforestation data were not available for all ecoregions. Ecoregions with high impact scores, high rates of recent deforestation and low coverage by the protected area network included Indonesia's Seram rain forests and the moist forests of Trinidad and Tobago. Key sites in these ecoregions represent some of the most urgent priorities for expansion of the global protected areas network to meet Convention on Biological Diversity targets to increase the proportion of land formally protected to 17% by 2020. Areas with high impact scores, rapid deforestation, low protection and high carbon storage values may represent significant opportunities for both biodiversity conservation and climate change mitigation, for example through Reducing

  5. Identifying priority areas for conservation: a global assessment for forest-dependent birds.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Buchanan, Graeme M; Donald, Paul F; Butchart, Stuart H M

    2011-01-01

    Limited resources are available to address the world's growing environmental problems, requiring conservationists to identify priority sites for action. Using new distribution maps for all of the world's forest-dependent birds (60.6% of all bird species), we quantify the contribution of remaining forest to conserving global avian biodiversity. For each of the world's partly or wholly forested 5-km cells, we estimated an impact score of its contribution to the distribution of all the forest bird species estimated to occur within it, and so is proportional to the impact on the conservation status of the world's forest-dependent birds were the forest it contains lost. The distribution of scores was highly skewed, a very small proportion of cells having scores several orders of magnitude above the global mean. Ecoregions containing the highest values of this score included relatively species-poor islands such as Hawaii and Palau, the relatively species-rich islands of Indonesia and the Philippines, and the megadiverse Atlantic Forests and northern Andes of South America. Ecoregions with high impact scores and high deforestation rates (2000-2005) included montane forests in Cameroon and the Eastern Arc of Tanzania, although deforestation data were not available for all ecoregions. Ecoregions with high impact scores, high rates of recent deforestation and low coverage by the protected area network included Indonesia's Seram rain forests and the moist forests of Trinidad and Tobago. Key sites in these ecoregions represent some of the most urgent priorities for expansion of the global protected areas network to meet Convention on Biological Diversity targets to increase the proportion of land formally protected to 17% by 2020. Areas with high impact scores, rapid deforestation, low protection and high carbon storage values may represent significant opportunities for both biodiversity conservation and climate change mitigation, for example through Reducing Emissions from

  6. What's it worth to you? Estimating the public's willingness to pay for biodiversity conservation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jonathan. Thompson

    2005-01-01

    Conserving biodiversity in the Oregon Coast Range requires tradeoffs. Policymakers must consider both the costs and benefits of new conservation programs. During this appraisal process, the costs, in terms of economic activity forgone, are often easier to quantify than the benefits. We all know that biodiversity is valuable, but how does its value compare to other...

  7. Knowledge, Attitudes and Awareness of Pre-Service Teachers on Biodiversity Conservation in Rwanda

    Science.gov (United States)

    Venuste, Nsengimana; Olivier, Habimana; Valens, Ngarukiye

    2017-01-01

    This research presents a case study on the knowledge of pre-service teachers of the school of lower secondary education on biodiversity conservation in Rwanda. It critically examines the implication of the level of knowledge on attitudes and behaviors towards biodiversity conservation and the potential implications of a lack of the courses…

  8. Conservation of biodiversity as a strategy for improving human health and well-being.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kilpatrick, A Marm; Salkeld, Daniel J; Titcomb, Georgia; Hahn, Micah B

    2017-06-05

    The Earth's ecosystems have been altered by anthropogenic processes, including land use, harvesting populations, species introductions and climate change. These anthropogenic processes greatly alter plant and animal communities, thereby changing transmission of the zoonotic pathogens they carry. Biodiversity conservation may be a potential win-win strategy for maintaining ecosystem health and protecting public health, yet the causal evidence to support this strategy is limited. Evaluating conservation as a viable public health intervention requires answering four questions: (i) Is there a general and causal relationship between biodiversity and pathogen transmission, and if so, which direction is it in? (ii) Does increased pathogen diversity with increased host biodiversity result in an increase in total disease burden? (iii) Do the net benefits of biodiversity conservation to human well-being outweigh the benefits that biodiversity-degrading activities, such as agriculture and resource utilization, provide? (iv) Are biodiversity conservation interventions cost-effective when compared to other options employed in standard public health approaches? Here, we summarize current knowledge on biodiversity-zoonotic disease relationships and outline a research plan to address the gaps in our understanding for each of these four questions. Developing practical and self-sustaining biodiversity conservation interventions will require significant investment in disease ecology research to determine when and where they will be effective.This article is part of the themed issue 'Conservation, biodiversity and infectious disease: scientific evidence and policy implications'. © 2017 The Author(s).

  9. Reconciling Biodiversity Conservation and Widespread Deployment of Renewable Energy Technologies in the UK.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gove, Benedict; Williams, Leah J; Beresford, Alison E; Roddis, Philippa; Campbell, Colin; Teuten, Emma; Langston, Rowena H W; Bradbury, Richard B

    2016-01-01

    Renewable energy will potentially make an important contribution towards the dual aims of meeting carbon emission reduction targets and future energy demand. However, some technologies have considerable potential to impact on the biodiversity of the environments in which they are placed. In this study, an assessment was undertaken of the realistic deployment potential of a range of renewable energy technologies in the UK, considering constraints imposed by biodiversity conservation priorities. We focused on those energy sources that have the potential to make important energy contributions but which might conflict with biodiversity conservation objectives. These included field-scale solar, bioenergy crops, wind energy (both onshore and offshore), wave and tidal stream energy. The spatially-explicit analysis considered the potential opportunity available for each technology, at various levels of ecological risk. The resultant maps highlight the energy resource available, physical and policy constraints to deployment, and ecological sensitivity (based on the distribution of protected areas and sensitive species). If the technologies are restricted to areas which currently appear not to have significant ecological constraints, the total potential energy output from these energy sources was estimated to be in the region of 5,547 TWh/yr. This would be sufficient to meet projected energy demand in the UK, and help to achieve carbon reduction targets. However, we highlight two important caveats. First, further ecological monitoring and surveillance is required to improve understanding of wildlife distributions and therefore potential impacts of utilising these energy sources. This is likely to reduce the total energy available, especially at sea. Second, some of the technologies under investigation are currently not deployed commercially. Consequently this potential energy will only be available if continued effort is put into developing these energy sources

  10. Towards biodiversity hotspots effective for conserving mammals with small geographic ranges

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carrara, Rodolfo; San Blas, Germán; Agrain, Federico; Roig-Juñent, Sergio

    2017-01-01

    The main goal of using global biodiversity hotspots for conservation purposes is to protect taxa with small geographic ranges because these are highly vulnerable to extinction. However, the extent to what different hotspots types are effective for meeting this goal remains controversial because hotspots have been previously defined as either the richest or most threatened and richest sites in terms of total, endemic or threatened species. In this regard, the use of species richness to set conservation priorities is widely discussed because strategies focused on this diversity measure tend to miss many of the taxa with small geographic ranges. Here we use data on global terrestrial mammal distributions to show that, hotspots of total species, endemism and threat defined in terms of species richness are effective in including 27%, 29% and 11% respectively, of the taxa with small geographic ranges. Whilst, the same hotspot types defined in terms of a simple diversity index, which is a function of species richness and range-size rarity, include 68%, 44% and 90% respectively, of these taxa. In addition, we demonstrate that index hotspot types are highly efficient because they conserve 79% of mammal species (21% more species than richness hotspot types), with 59% of species shared by three hotspot types (31% more than richness hotspot types). These results suggest that selection of different diversity measures to define hotspots may strongly affect the achievement of conservation goals.

  11. Contribution of conservation genetics in assessing neotropical freshwater fish biodiversity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    NM. Piorski

    Full Text Available Human activities have a considerable impact on hydrographic systems and fish fauna. The present review on conservation genetics of neotropical freshwater fish reveals that DNA analyses have been promoting increased knowledge on the genetic structure of fish species and their response to environmental changes. This knowledge is fundamental to the management of wild fish populations and the establishment of Evolutionary Significant Units capable of conserving genetic integrity. While population structuring can occur even in long-distance migratory fish, isolated populations can show reduced genetic variation and be at greater risk of extinction. Phylogeography and phylogeny have been powerful tools in understanding the evolution of fish populations, species and communities in distinct neotropic environments. Captive fish can be used to introduce new individuals and genes into the wild and their benefits and disadvantages can be monitored through genetic analysis. Understanding how fish biodiversity in neotropical freshwaters is generated and maintained is highly important, as these habitats are transformed by human development and fish communities are increasingly exploited as food sources to sustain a growing human population.

  12. When will community management conserve biodiversity? Evidence from Malawi

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Joy E. Hecht

    2008-12-01

    Full Text Available Both development practitioners and conservation organizations are focused on community ownership and management of natural resources as a way to create incentives for the conservation of biodiversity. This has led to the implementation of a number of large community-based conservation projects in sub-Saharan Africa, in countries including Namibia, Zimbabwe, Malawi, Zambia, and Rwanda. While the concept is logical, and valuation studies may suggest that conservation is more valuable than other uses of the resources in some areas, there has been little detailed analysis of the financial costs and benefits to the communities, to determine whether they would actually have an incentive to conserve if they had more extensive legal rights to the resources. This paper assesses the conditions under which this approach may be viable, based on a valuation study of the resources of Mount Mulanje in southern Malawi.Les spécialistes du développement et les organisations de conservation s’intéressent à la propriété et à la gestion communautaire des ressources naturelles comme moyen de créer des mesures d’incitation en faveur de la conservation de la biodiversité. Cette approche a conduit à la mise en œuvre d’un certain nombre de grands projets de conservation communautaires en Afrique subsaharienne, notamment en Namibie, au Zimbabwe, au Malawi, en Zambie et au Rwanda. Même si cette approche est logique et si les études d’évaluation semblent suggérer que, dans certaines régions, la conservation est plus utile que l’exploitation des ressources, il existe peu d’analyses détaillées sur les coûts et les avantages financiers que cela engendrerait pour les communautés, analyses qui permettraient de déterminer si le développement des droits légaux des communautés sur ces ressources les inciterait à les conserver. Ce rapport évalue les conditions de viabilité de cette approche sur la base d’une étude d’évaluation des

  13. Science for avian conservation: Priorities for the new millennium

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ruth, J.M.; Petit, D.R.; Sauer, J.R.; Samuel, M.D.; Johnson, F.A.; Fornwall, M.D.; Korschgen, C.E.; Bennett, J.P.

    2003-01-01

    Over the past decade, bird conservation activities have become the preeminent natural resource conservation effort in North America. Maturation of the North American Waterfowl Management Plan (NAWMP), establishment of Partners in Flight (PIF), and creation of comprehensive colonial waterbird and shorebird conservation plans have stimulated unprecedented interest in, and funding for, bird conservation in the United States, Canada, Mexico, and other countries in the western hemisphere. Key to that success in the United States has been active collaboration among federal, state and local governments, conservation organizations, academia, and industry. The U.S. Department of the Interior (DOI), which has primary statutory responsibility for migratory bird conservation and management, has been a key partner.Despite the great strides that have been made in bird conservation science, historical approaches to research and monitoring have often failed to provide sufficient information and understanding to effectively manage bird populations at large spatial scales. That shortcoming, and the lack of an integrated strategy and comprehensive set of research priorities, is more evident in light of the goals established by the North American Bird Conservation Initiative (NABCI). The NABCI is a trinational, coalition-driven effort to provide an organizational umbrella for existing conservation initiatives. The expanded focus of NABCI and individual bird conservation initiatives is to work together in an integrated, holistic fashion to keep common birds common and to increase populations of declining, threatened, and endangered species.To assist bird conservation initiatives in defining goals and developing new approaches to effective research, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), the research agency of DOI, convened a workshop, “Science for Avian Conservation: Understanding, Modeling, and Applying Ecological Relationships,” on 31 October–2 November 2000, which brought together

  14. Focus on CSIR research in pollution waste: Planning and policy for the systematic conservation of freshwater biodiversity

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Roux, D

    2007-08-01

    Full Text Available for the systematic conservation of freshwater biodiversity Key capabilities Cross-sectoral engagement of biodiversity specialists and practitioners in developing policy objectives, setting conservation targets and debating planning options Development...

  15. Taxonomic research priorities for the conservation of the South African flora

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lize von Staden

    2013-04-01

    Full Text Available Taxonomic revisions, monographs and floras are the most important, and often the only source of data for assessing the extinction risk of plants, with recent revisions contributing to more accurate assessments. The recently completed Red List of South African plants involved an overview of the taxonomic literature pertaining to the South African flora, providing an opportunity to identify critical gaps in taxonomic coverage. In this study we identified taxonomic research priorities for effective conservation of South African plants. Priorities were identified at genus level, according to time since last revision, level of endemism, collecting effort, proportion of taxa included in revisions, and specimen identification confidence. Although the results indicate that 62% of the flora has been recently revised, revisionary taxonomic output has declined drastically, particularly in the past 10 years. This decline is a result of a decrease in revisionary productivity per taxonomist and not a result of a decline in the number of working taxonomists. The family Aizoaceae is the top priority for taxonomic research with 55% of taxa in need of revision, followed by Hyacinthaceae with 34% of taxa not yet revised. Ericaceae, Euphorbiaceae, Rutaceae, Malvaceae, Asteraceae and Acanthaceae are also priorities with over 30% of taxa last revised before 1970. We recommend the reinstatement of the Flora of Southern Africa project in an online format in order to centralise South Africa's existing taxonomic information and reinvigorate revisionary taxonomic study. This project will allow South Africa to fulfil its commitments to the Convention on Biodiversity by achieving Target 1 of the Global Strategy for Plant Conservation.

  16. Matches and mismatches between conservation investments and biodiversity values in the European Union.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sánchez-Fernández, David; Abellán, Pedro; Aragón, Pedro; Varela, Sara; Cabeza, Mar

    2018-02-01

    Recently, the European Commission adopted a new strategy to halt the loss of biodiversity. Member states are expected to favor a more effective collection and redistribution of European Union (EU) funds under the current Multiannual Financial Framework for 2014-2020. Because of the large spatial variation in the distribution of biodiversity and conservation needs at the continental scale, EU instruments should ensure that countries with higher biodiversity values get more funds and resources for the conservation than other countries. Using linear regressions, we assessed the association between conservation investments and biodiversity values across member states, accounting for a variety of conservation investment indicators, taxonomic groups (including groups of plants, vertebrates, and invertebrates), and indicators of biodiversity value. In general, we found clear overall associations between conservation investments and biodiversity variables. However, some countries received more or less investment than would be expected based on biodiversity values in those countries. We also found that the extensive use of birds as unique indicators of conservation effectiveness may lead to biased decisions. Our results can inform future decisions regarding funding allocation and thus improve distribution of EU conservation funds. © 2017 Society for Conservation Biology.

  17. Sources and sinks of diversification and conservation priorities for the Mexican tropical dry forest.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Judith X Becerra

    Full Text Available Elucidating the geographical history of diversification is critical for inferring where future diversification may occur and thus could be a valuable aid in determining conservation priorities. However, it has been difficult to recognize areas with a higher likelihood of promoting diversification. We reconstructed centres of origin of lineages and identified areas in the Mexican tropical dry forest that have been important centres of diversification (sources and areas where species are maintained but where diversification is less likely to occur (diversity sinks. We used a molecular phylogeny of the genus Bursera, a dominant member of the forest, along with information on current species distributions. Results indicate that vast areas of the forest have historically functioned as diversity sinks, generating few or no extant Bursera lineages. Only a few areas have functioned as major engines of diversification. Long-term preservation of biodiversity may be promoted by incorporation of such knowledge in decision-making.

  18. Cave invertebrates in Espírito Santo state, Brazil: a primary analysis of endemism, threats and conservation priorities

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marconi Souza Silva

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available The cave-dwelling invertebrates were studied according to their composition, biodiversity, distribution and threats in the Atlantic Forest Central Biodiversity Corridor, a priority area for conservation actions in Brazil. Twelve obligate cave species were found, plus 495 troglophile species. Araneae (103 spp., Coleoptera (61 spp., Diptera (56 spp. and Lepidoptera (38 spp. were the richest taxa. The richness was higher in the carbonate caves (63 spp., sd = 16.7 and the highest diversity in granitic caves (H´= 2.68, sd = 0.5. The spatial turnover was 63.45 and similarity less than 30%. The total richness was correlated with the linear extension of the caves (Rs = 0.757, p ≤ 0.05. Surrounding area deforestation and religious and tourist use were the main threats. Emergency attention is recommended regarding protective actions, management and conservation of caves of extremely high biological importance.

  19. Evaluating Temporal Consistency in Marine Biodiversity Hotspots

    OpenAIRE

    Piacenza, Susan E.; Thurman, Lindsey L.; Barner, Allison K.; Benkwitt, Cassandra E.; Boersma, Kate S.; Cerny-Chipman, Elizabeth B.; Ingeman, Kurt E.; Kindinger, Tye L.; Lindsley, Amy J.; Nelson, Jake; Reimer, Jessica N.; Rowe, Jennifer C.; Shen, Chenchen; Thompson, Kevin A.; Heppell, Selina S.

    2015-01-01

    With the ongoing crisis of biodiversity loss and limited resources for conservation, the concept of biodiversity hotspots has been useful in determining conservation priority areas. However, there has been limited research into how temporal variability in biodiversity may influence conservation area prioritization. To address this information gap, we present an approach to evaluate the temporal consistency of biodiversity hotspots in large marine ecosystems. Using a large scale, public monito...

  20. Practical approaches for assessing local land use change and conservation priorities in the tropics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rivas, Cassandra J.

    Tropical areas typically support high biological diversity; however, many are experiencing rapid land-use change. The resulting loss, fragmentation, and degradation of habitats place biodiversity at risk. For these reasons, the tropics are frequently identified as global conservation hotspots. Safeguarding tropical biodiversity necessitates successful and efficient conservation planning and implementation at local scales, where land use decisions are made and enforced. Yet, despite considerable agreement on the need for improved practices, planning may be difficult due to limited resources, such as funding, data, and expertise, especially for small conservation organizations in tropical developing countries. My thesis aims to assist small, non-governmental organizations (NGOs), operating in tropical developing countries, in overcoming resource limitations by providing recommendations for improved conservation planning. Following a brief introduction in Chapter 1, I present a literature review of systematic conservation planning (SCP) projects in the developing tropics. Although SCP is considered an efficient, effective approach, it requires substantial data and expertise to conduct the analysis and may present challenges for implementation. I reviewed and synthesized the methods and results of 14 case studies to identify practical ways to implement and overcome limitations for employing SCP. I found that SCP studies in the peer-reviewed literature were primarily implemented by researchers in large organizations or institutions, as opposed to on-the-ground conservation planners. A variety of data types were used in the SCP analyses, many of which data are freely available. Few case studies involved stakeholders and intended to implement the assessment; instead, the case studies were carried out in the context of research and development, limiting local involvement and implementation. Nonetheless, the studies provided valuable strategies for employing each step of

  1. Identifying conservation and restoration priorities for saproxylic and old-growth forest species: a case study in Switzerland.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lachat, Thibault; Bütler, Rita

    2009-07-01

    Saproxylic (dead-wood-associated) and old-growth species are among the most threatened species in European forest ecosystems, as they are susceptible to intensive forest management. Identifying areas with particular relevant features of biodiversity is of prime concern when developing species conservation and habitat restoration strategies and in optimizing resource investments. We present an approach to identify regional conservation and restoration priorities even if knowledge on species distribution is weak, such as for saproxylic and old-growth species in Switzerland. Habitat suitability maps were modeled for an expert-based selection of 55 focal species, using an ecological niche factor analyses (ENFA). All the maps were then overlaid, in order to identify potential species' hotspots for different species groups of the 55 focal species (e.g., birds, fungi, red-listed species). We found that hotspots for various species groups did not correspond. Our results indicate that an approach based on "richness hotspots" may fail to conserve specific species groups. We hence recommend defining a biodiversity conservation strategy prior to implementing conservation/restoration efforts in specific regions. The conservation priority setting of the five biogeographical regions in Switzerland, however, did not differ when different hotspot definitions were applied. This observation emphasizes that the chosen method is robust. Since the ENFA needs only presence data, this species prediction method seems to be useful for any situation where the species distribution is poorly known and/or absence data are lacking. In order to identify priorities for either conservation or restoration efforts, we recommend a method based on presence data only, because absence data may reflect factors unrelated to species presence.

  2. Use of ancient sedimentary DNA as a novel conservation tool for high-altitude tropical biodiversity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boessenkool, Sanne; McGlynn, Gayle; Epp, Laura S; Taylor, David; Pimentel, Manuel; Gizaw, Abel; Nemomissa, Sileshi; Brochmann, Christian; Popp, Magnus

    2014-04-01

    Conservation of biodiversity may in the future increasingly depend upon the availability of scientific information to set suitable restoration targets. In traditional paleoecology, sediment-based pollen provides a means to define preanthropogenic impact conditions, but problems in establishing the exact provenance and ecologically meaningful levels of taxonomic resolution of the evidence are limiting. We explored the extent to which the use of sedimentary ancient DNA (sedaDNA) may complement pollen data in reconstructing past alpine environments in the tropics. We constructed a record of afro-alpine plants retrieved from DNA preserved in sediment cores from 2 volcanic crater sites in the Albertine Rift, eastern Africa. The record extended well beyond the onset of substantial anthropogenic effects on tropical mountains. To ensure high-quality taxonomic inference from the sedaDNA sequences, we built an extensive DNA reference library covering the majority of the afro-alpine flora, by sequencing DNA from taxonomically verified specimens. Comparisons with pollen records from the same sediment cores showed that plant diversity recovered with sedaDNA improved vegetation reconstructions based on pollen records by revealing both additional taxa and providing increased taxonomic resolution. Furthermore, combining the 2 measures assisted in distinguishing vegetation change at different geographic scales; sedaDNA almost exclusively reflects local vegetation, whereas pollen can potentially originate from a wide area that in highlands in particular can span several ecozones. Our results suggest that sedaDNA may provide information on restoration targets and the nature and magnitude of human-induced environmental changes, including in high conservation priority, biodiversity hotspots, where understanding of preanthropogenic impact (or reference) conditions is highly limited. © 2013 Society for Conservation Biology.

  3. Cave Conservation Priority Index to Adopt a Rapid Protection Strategy: A Case Study in Brazilian Atlantic Rain Forest

    Science.gov (United States)

    Souza Silva, Marconi; Martins, Rogério Parentoni; Ferreira, Rodrigo Lopes

    2015-02-01

    Cave environments are characterized by possessing specialized fauna living in high environmental stability with limited food conditions. These fauna are highly vulnerable to impacts, because this condition can frequently be easily altered. Moreover, environmental determinants of the biodiversity patterns of caves remain poorly understood and protected. Therefore, the main goal of this work is to propose a cave conservation priority index (CCPi) for a rapid assessment for troglobiotic and troglophile protection. Furthermore, the troglobiotic diversity, distribution and threats have been mapped in the Brazilian Atlantic forest. To propose the CCPi, the human impacts and richness of troglobiotic and troglophile species of 100 caves were associated. Data related to troglomorphic/troglobiotic fauna from another 200 caves were used to map the troglobiotic diversity and distribution. The CCPi reveals extremely high conservation priority for 15 % of the caves, high for 36 % and average for 46 % of the caves. Fourteen caves with extremely high priorities should have urgent conservation and management actions. The geographical distribution of the 221 known troglobiotic/troglomorphic species allowed us to select 19 karst areas that need conservation actions. Seven areas were considered to have urgent priority for conservation actions. The two richest areas correspond to the "iron quadrangle" with iron ore caves (67 spp.) and the "Açungui limestone group" (56 spp.). Both areas have several caves and are important aquifers. The use of the CCPi can prevent future losses because it helps assessors to select caves with priorities for conservation which should receive emergency attention in relation to protection, management and conservation actions.

  4. Pesticide use and biodiversity conservation in the Amazonian agricultural frontier.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schiesari, Luis; Waichman, Andrea; Brock, Theo; Adams, Cristina; Grillitsch, Britta

    2013-06-05

    Agricultural frontiers are dynamic environments characterized by the conversion of native habitats to agriculture. Because they are currently concentrated in diverse tropical habitats, agricultural frontiers are areas where the largest number of species is exposed to hazardous land management practices, including pesticide use. Focusing on the Amazonian frontier, we show that producers have varying access to resources, knowledge, control and reward mechanisms to improve land management practices. With poor education and no technical support, pesticide use by smallholders sharply deviated from agronomical recommendations, tending to overutilization of hazardous compounds. By contrast, with higher levels of technical expertise and resources, and aiming at more restrictive markets, large-scale producers adhered more closely to technical recommendations and even voluntarily replaced more hazardous compounds. However, the ecological footprint increased significantly over time because of increased dosage or because formulations that are less toxic to humans may be more toxic to other biodiversity. Frontier regions appear to be unique in terms of the conflicts between production and conservation, and the necessary pesticide risk management and risk reduction can only be achieved through responsibility-sharing by diverse stakeholders, including governmental and intergovernmental organizations, NGOs, financial institutions, pesticide and agricultural industries, producers, academia and consumers.

  5. A freshwater biodiversity hotspot under pressure – assessing threats and identifying conservation needs for ancient Lake Ohrid

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    G. Kostoski

    2010-12-01

    measures, international conservation activities, and ongoing research on conservation and raising of public awareness. Following this summary, we evaluate the status quo and future of Lake Ohrid and its biota. A comprehensive conservation strategy should include measures that result in an immediate reduction of nutrient input, particularly with phosphorus, in order to slow down the ongoing eutrophication process. The existing watershed management should become more effective. Implementation and particularly with a view to the enforcement of national laws should be enhanced. Increased research on the lakes' limnology, biodiversity, and conservation management practices are necessary. The latter research should identify conservation priorities. Public awareness should be enhanced. Facing these parallel needs to protect the unique biodiversity of Lake Ohrid, we suggest urging (a implementation and enforcement of the General Management Plan that would ensure long-term integrated and sustainable use of the lake and its watershed, (b scientific studies on ecology, biodiversity and effects of human impact, (c the establishment of Core Conservation areas (CCA, including underwater reserves, and (d Coastal Zone Management (CZM areas that would constitute buffer zones for the CCAs around the lake. Given the number of identified threats, it is clear that only concerted international action can stop or at least slow down further degradation of Lake Ohrid and the creeping biodiversity crisis already evident. All conservation activities should, among others, ultimately lead to a trans-boundary major conservation area of the Ohrid-Prespa region that would allow long-term integration of both humans and nature.

  6. Tetrapods on the EDGE: Overcoming data limitations to identify phylogenetic conservation priorities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gray, Claudia L.; Wearn, Oliver R.; Owen, Nisha R.

    2018-01-01

    The scale of the ongoing biodiversity crisis requires both effective conservation prioritisation and urgent action. As extinction is non-random across the tree of life, it is important to prioritise threatened species which represent large amounts of evolutionary history. The EDGE metric prioritises species based on their Evolutionary Distinctiveness (ED), which measures the relative contribution of a species to the total evolutionary history of their taxonomic group, and Global Endangerment (GE), or extinction risk. EDGE prioritisations rely on adequate phylogenetic and extinction risk data to generate meaningful priorities for conservation. However, comprehensive phylogenetic trees of large taxonomic groups are extremely rare and, even when available, become quickly out-of-date due to the rapid rate of species descriptions and taxonomic revisions. Thus, it is important that conservationists can use the available data to incorporate evolutionary history into conservation prioritisation. We compared published and new methods to estimate missing ED scores for species absent from a phylogenetic tree whilst simultaneously correcting the ED scores of their close taxonomic relatives. We found that following artificial removal of species from a phylogenetic tree, the new method provided the closest estimates of their “true” ED score, differing from the true ED score by an average of less than 1%, compared to the 31% and 38% difference of the previous methods. The previous methods also substantially under- and over-estimated scores as more species were artificially removed from a phylogenetic tree. We therefore used the new method to estimate ED scores for all tetrapods. From these scores we updated EDGE prioritisation rankings for all tetrapod species with IUCN Red List assessments, including the first EDGE prioritisation for reptiles. Further, we identified criteria to identify robust priority species in an effort to further inform conservation action whilst

  7. Community Markets for Conservation (COMACO) links biodiversity conservation with sustainable improvements in livelihoods and food production.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lewis, Dale; Bell, Samuel D; Fay, John; Bothi, Kim L; Gatere, Lydiah; Kabila, Makando; Mukamba, Mwangala; Matokwani, Edwin; Mushimbalume, Matthews; Moraru, Carmen I; Lehmann, Johannes; Lassoie, James; Wolfe, David; Lee, David R; Buck, Louise; Travis, Alexander J

    2011-08-23

    In the Luangwa Valley, Zambia, persistent poverty and hunger present linked challenges to rural development and biodiversity conservation. Both household coping strategies and larger-scale economic development efforts have caused severe natural resource degradation that limits future economic opportunities and endangers ecosystem services. A model based on a business infrastructure has been developed to promote and maintain sustainable agricultural and natural resource management practices, leading to direct and indirect conservation outcomes. The Community Markets for Conservation (COMACO) model operates primarily with communities surrounding national parks, strengthening conservation benefits produced by these protected areas. COMACO first identifies the least food-secure households and trains them in sustainable agricultural practices that minimize threats to natural resources while meeting household needs. In addition, COMACO identifies people responsible for severe natural resource depletion and trains them to generate alternative income sources. In an effort to maintain compliance with these practices, COMACO provides extension support and access to high-value markets that would otherwise be inaccessible to participants. Because the model is continually evolving via adaptive management, success or failure of the model as a whole is difficult to quantify at this early stage. We therefore test specific hypotheses and present data documenting the stabilization of previously declining wildlife populations; the meeting of thresholds of productivity that give COMACO access to stable, high-value markets and progress toward economic self-sufficiency; and the adoption of sustainable agricultural practices by participants and other community members. Together, these findings describe a unique, business-oriented model for poverty alleviation, food production, and biodiversity conservation.

  8. Harmonizing Biodiversity Conservation and Productivity in the Context of Increasing Demands on Landscapes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seppelt, Ralf; Beckmann, Michael; Ceauşu, Silvia; Cord, Anna F.; Gerstner, Katharina; Gurevitch, Jessica; Kambach, Stephan; Klotz, Stefan; Mendenhall, Chase; Phillips, Helen R. P.; Powell, Kristin; Verburg, Peter H.; Verhagen, Willem; Winter, Marten; Newbold, Tim

    2016-01-01

    Abstract Biodiversity conservation and agricultural production are often seen as mutually exclusive objectives. Strategies for reconciling them are intensely debated. We argue that harmonization between biodiversity conservation and crop production can be improved by increasing our understanding of the underlying relationships between them. We provide a general conceptual framework that links biodiversity and agricultural production through the separate relationships between land use and biodiversity and between land use and production. Hypothesized relationships are derived by synthesizing existing empirical and theoretical ecological knowledge. The framework suggests nonlinear relationships caused by the multifaceted impacts of land use (composition, configuration, and intensity). We propose solutions for overcoming the apparently dichotomous aims of maximizing either biodiversity conservation or agricultural production and suggest new hypotheses that emerge from our proposed framework. PMID:29599534

  9. BIODIVERSITY CONSERVATION INCENTIVE PROGRAMS FOR PRIVATELY OWNED FORESTS

    Science.gov (United States)

    In many countries, a large proportion of forest biodiversity exists on private land. Legal restrictions are often inadequate to prevent loss of habitat and encourage forest owners to manage areas for biodiversity, especially when these management actions require time, money, and ...

  10. Scale-dependent complementarity of climatic velocity and environmental diversity for identifying priority areas for conservation under climate change.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carroll, Carlos; Roberts, David R; Michalak, Julia L; Lawler, Joshua J; Nielsen, Scott E; Stralberg, Diana; Hamann, Andreas; Mcrae, Brad H; Wang, Tongli

    2017-11-01

    As most regions of the earth transition to altered climatic conditions, new methods are needed to identify refugia and other areas whose conservation would facilitate persistence of biodiversity under climate change. We compared several common approaches to conservation planning focused on climate resilience over a broad range of ecological settings across North America and evaluated how commonalities in the priority areas identified by different methods varied with regional context and spatial scale. Our results indicate that priority areas based on different environmental diversity metrics differed substantially from each other and from priorities based on spatiotemporal metrics such as climatic velocity. Refugia identified by diversity or velocity metrics were not strongly associated with the current protected area system, suggesting the need for additional conservation measures including protection of refugia. Despite the inherent uncertainties in predicting future climate, we found that variation among climatic velocities derived from different general circulation models and emissions pathways was less than the variation among the suite of environmental diversity metrics. To address uncertainty created by this variation, planners can combine priorities identified by alternative metrics at a single resolution and downweight areas of high variation between metrics. Alternately, coarse-resolution velocity metrics can be combined with fine-resolution diversity metrics in order to leverage the respective strengths of the two groups of metrics as tools for identification of potential macro- and microrefugia that in combination maximize both transient and long-term resilience to climate change. Planners should compare and integrate approaches that span a range of model complexity and spatial scale to match the range of ecological and physical processes influencing persistence of biodiversity and identify a conservation network resilient to threats operating at

  11. Status of Biodiversity and Its Conservation in the Kobadak River Basin of Maheshpur Upazila, Jhenaidah, Bangladesh

    Science.gov (United States)

    Uddin, Jashim Md.

    2015-01-01

    This research project represents the Status of Biodiversity and Its Conservation of Kobadak River basin of Maheshpur Upazila. The study was designed to develop a set of information about the present condition of biodiversity of the study area. Both primary and secondary data have been used to fulfill the survey successfully. Primary data have been…

  12. The Gauteng Conservation Plan: Planning for biodiversity in a rapidly urbanising province

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michèle F. Pfab

    2017-11-01

    Conclusion: The existing protected area network is inadequate for the conservation of biodiversity in Gauteng. The Gauteng Conservation Plan identifies a set of areas that are required to achieve conservation targets. It is important that identified areas currently not in the protected area network are protected either formally or through legislated land use management processes.

  13. Biodiversity informatics: challenges and opportunities for applying biodiversity information to management and conservation

    Science.gov (United States)

    James S. Kagan

    2006-01-01

    Researchers, land managers, and the public currently often are unable to obtain useful biodiversity information because the subject represents such a large component of biology and ecology, and systems to compile and organize this information do not exist. Information on vascular plant taxonomy, as addressed by the Global Biodiversity Information Facility and key...

  14. Importance of baseline specification in evaluating conservation interventions and achieving no net loss of biodiversity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bull, J W; Gordon, A; Law, E A; Suttle, K B; Milner-Gulland, E J

    2014-06-01

    There is an urgent need to improve the evaluation of conservation interventions. This requires specifying an objective and a frame of reference from which to measure performance. Reference frames can be baselines (i.e., known biodiversity at a fixed point in history) or counterfactuals (i.e., a scenario that would have occurred without the intervention). Biodiversity offsets are interventions with the objective of no net loss of biodiversity (NNL). We used biodiversity offsets to analyze the effects of the choice of reference frame on whether interventions met stated objectives. We developed 2 models to investigate the implications of setting different frames of reference in regions subject to various biodiversity trends and anthropogenic impacts. First, a general analytic model evaluated offsets against a range of baseline and counterfactual specifications. Second, a simulation model then replicated these results with a complex real world case study: native grassland offsets in Melbourne, Australia. Both models showed that achieving NNL depended upon the interaction between reference frame and background biodiversity trends. With a baseline, offsets were less likely to achieve NNL where biodiversity was decreasing than where biodiversity was stable or increasing. With a no-development counterfactual, however, NNL was achievable only where biodiversity was declining. Otherwise, preventing development was better for biodiversity. Uncertainty about compliance was a stronger determinant of success than uncertainty in underlying biodiversity trends. When only development and offset locations were considered, offsets sometimes resulted in NNL, but not across an entire region. Choice of reference frame determined feasibility and effort required to attain objectives when designing and evaluating biodiversity offset schemes. We argue the choice is thus of fundamental importance for conservation policy. Our results shed light on situations in which biodiversity offsets may

  15. Global priority conservation areas in the face of 21st century climate change.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Junsheng Li

    Full Text Available In an era when global biodiversity is increasingly impacted by rapidly changing climate, efforts to conserve global biodiversity may be compromised if we do not consider the uneven distribution of climate-induced threats. Here, via a novel application of an aggregate Regional Climate Change Index (RCCI that combines changes in mean annual temperature and precipitation with changes in their interannual variability, we assess multi-dimensional climate changes across the "Global 200" ecoregions - a set of priority ecoregions designed to "achieve the goal of saving a broad diversity of the Earth's ecosystems" - over the 21(st century. Using an ensemble of 62 climate scenarios, our analyses show that, between 1991-2010 and 2081-2100, 96% of the ecoregions considered will be likely (more than 66% probability to face moderate-to-pronounced climate changes, when compared to the magnitudes of change during the past five decades. Ecoregions at high northern latitudes are projected to experience most pronounced climate change, followed by those in the Mediterranean Basin, Amazon Basin, East Africa, and South Asia. Relatively modest RCCI signals are expected over ecoregions in Northwest South America, West Africa, and Southeast Asia, yet with considerable uncertainties. Although not indicative of climate-change impacts per se, the RCCI-based assessment can help policy-makers gain a quantitative and comprehensive overview of the unevenly distributed climate risks across the G200 ecoregions. Whether due to significant climate change signals or large uncertainties, the ecoregions highlighted in the assessment deserve special attention in more detailed impact assessments to inform effective conservation strategies under future climate change.

  16. Effectiveness of biodiversity surrogates for conservation planning: different measures of effectiveness generate a kaleidoscope of variation.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hedley S Grantham

    Full Text Available Conservation planners represent many aspects of biodiversity by using surrogates with spatial distributions readily observed or quantified, but tests of their effectiveness have produced varied and conflicting results. We identified four factors likely to have a strong influence on the apparent effectiveness of surrogates: (1 the choice of surrogate; (2 differences among study regions, which might be large and unquantified (3 the test method, that is, how effectiveness is quantified, and (4 the test features that the surrogates are intended to represent. Analysis of an unusually rich dataset enabled us, for the first time, to disentangle these factors and to compare their individual and interacting influences. Using two data-rich regions, we estimated effectiveness using five alternative methods: two forms of incidental representation, two forms of species accumulation index and irreplaceability correlation, to assess the performance of 'forest ecosystems' and 'environmental units' as surrogates for six groups of threatened species-the test features-mammals, birds, reptiles, frogs, plants and all of these combined. Four methods tested the effectiveness of the surrogates by selecting areas for conservation of the surrogates then estimating how effective those areas were at representing test features. One method measured the spatial match between conservation priorities for surrogates and test features. For methods that selected conservation areas, we measured effectiveness using two analytical approaches: (1 when representation targets for the surrogates were achieved (incidental representation, or (2 progressively as areas were selected (species accumulation index. We estimated the spatial correlation of conservation priorities using an index known as summed irreplaceability. In general, the effectiveness of surrogates for our taxa (mostly threatened species was low, although environmental units tended to be more effective than forest ecosystems

  17. Deforestation and fragmentation of natural forests in the upper Changhua watershed, Hainan, China: implications for biodiversity conservation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhai, De-Li; Cannon, Charles H; Dai, Zhi-Cong; Zhang, Cui-Ping; Xu, Jian-Chu

    2015-01-01

    Hainan, the largest tropical island in China, belongs to the Indo-Burma biodiversity hotspot. The Changhua watershed is a center of endemism for plants and birds and the cradle of Hainan's main rivers. However, this area has experienced recent and ongoing deforestation and habitat fragmentation. To quantify habitat loss and fragmentation of natural forests, as well as the land-cover changes in the Changhua watershed, we analyzed Landsat images obtained in 1988, 1995, and 2005. Land-cover dynamics analysis showed that natural forests increased in area (97,909 to 104,023 ha) from 1988 to 1995 but decreased rapidly to 76,306 ha over the next decade. Rubber plantations increased steadily throughout the study period while pulp plantations rapidly expanded after 1995. Similar patterns of land cover change were observed in protected areas, indicating a lack of enforcement. Natural forests conversion to rubber and pulp plantations has a general negative effect on biodiversity, primarily through habitat fragmentation. The fragmentation analysis showed that natural forests area was reduced and patch number increased, while patch size and connectivity decreased. These land-cover changes threatened local biodiversity, especially island endemic species. Both natural forests losses and fragmentation should be stopped by strict enforcement to prevent further damage. Preserving the remaining natural forests and enforcing the status of protected areas should be a management priority to maximize the watershed's biodiversity conservation value.

  18. Applying tradable permits to biodiversity conservation: A conceptual analysis of trading rules

    OpenAIRE

    Wissel, Silvia; Wätzold, Frank

    2008-01-01

    Tradable permits have already been applied in many areas of environmental policy and may be a possible response to increasing calls for flexible conservation instruments which are able to successfully conserve biodiversity while allowing for economic development. The idea behind applying tradable permits to conservation is that developers wishing to turn land to economic purposes, thereby destroying valuable habitat, may only do so if they submit a permit to the conservation agency showing th...

  19. Temporal evaluation of the Conservation Priority Index for medicinal plants

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    André dos Santos Souza

    Full Text Available ABSTRACT We investigated, through a temporal comparison, the extraction of non-timber forest resources by quantitatively analyzing the Conservation Priority Index (CPI. The study focused on the Fulni-ô Indigenous Territory, in the municipality of Águas Belas, PE (Northeast Brazil, which is characterized by caatinga vegetation (seasonal dry forest. Information on the availability of the exploited resources and the reported use of the species were obtained from vegetation sampling and semi-structured interviews, respectively. Our results demonstrated a reduction in species richness overtime, which may be due to continued resource extraction in the area, and that some species with low densities were even more affected. The species reported as being at high risk in the current study apparently did not differ from their status in the previous study, which supports the idea that these species are most evident in this situation more for their high potential of use than for their high densities. When we associate these events together with the disappearance of some rare species, we can conclude that the CPI was not efficient in predicting changes, and that the combination of variables used with the biological variables of the species needs to be adjusted.

  20. Biocomplexity and conservation of biodiversity hotspots: three case studies from the Americas.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Callicott, J Baird; Rozzi, Ricardo; Delgado, Luz; Monticino, Michael; Acevedo, Miguel; Harcombe, Paul

    2007-02-28

    The perspective of 'biocomplexity' in the form of 'coupled natural and human systems' represents a resource for the future conservation of biodiversity hotspots in three direct ways: (i) modelling the impact on biodiversity of private land-use decisions and public land-use policies, (ii) indicating how the biocultural history of a biodiversity hotspot may be a resource for its future conservation, and (iii) identifying and deploying the nodes of both the material and psycho-spiritual connectivity between human and natural systems in service to conservation goals. Three biocomplexity case studies of areas notable for their biodiversity, selected for their variability along a latitudinal climate gradient and a human-impact gradient, are developed: the Big Thicket in southeast Texas, the Upper Botanamo River Basin in eastern Venezuela, and the Cape Horn Archipelago at the austral tip of Chile. More deeply, the biocomplexity perspective reveals alternative ways of understanding biodiversity itself, because it directs attention to the human concepts through which biodiversity is perceived and understood. The very meaning of biodiversity is contestable and varies according to the cognitive lenses through which it is perceived.

  1. The role of wild and scenic rivers in the conservation of aquatic biodiversity

    Science.gov (United States)

    John D. Rothlisberger; Tamara Heartsill Scalley; Russell F. Thurow

    2017-01-01

    Formerly diverse and abundant freshwater species are highly imperiled, with higher extinction rates than many other taxonomic groups worldwide. In the 50 years since passage of the US Wild and Scenic Rivers Act, wild and scenic rivers (WSRs) have contributed significantly to the conservation of native aquatic biodiversity as well as to the conservation and restoration...

  2. Incentives for biodiversity conservation beyond the best management practices: are forestland owners interested

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jagannadha R. Matta; Janaki R. R. Alavalapati; D. Evan Mercer

    2009-01-01

    With the growing recognition of the role of environmental services rendered by private lands, landowner involvement has become a critical component of landscape-level strategies to conserve biodiversity. In this paper, we examine the willingness of private forest owners to participate in a conservation program that requires adopting management regimes beyond...

  3. How can global conventions for biodiversity and ecosystem services guide local conservation actions?

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Geijzendorffer, Ilse R.; van Teeffelen, Astrid; Allison, Hilary; Braun, Daniela; Horgan, K.; Iturrate-Garcia, Maitane; Santos, Maria João; Pellissier, Loïc; Prieur-Richard, Anne-Helene; Quatrini, Simone; Sakai, Shoko; Zuppinger-Dingley, Debra

    2017-01-01

    With global science-policy conventions for biodiversity and ecosystem services in place, much effort goes into monitoring and reporting on the progress toward policy targets. As conservation actions happen locally, can such global monitoring and reporting efforts effectively guide conservation

  4. A mosaic-based approach is needed to conserve biodiversity in disturbed freshwater ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hitchman, Sean M.; Mather, Martha E.; Smith, Joseph M.; Fencl, Jane S.

    2017-01-01

    Conserving native biodiversity in the face of human‐ and climate‐related impacts is a challenging and globally important ecological problem that requires an understanding of spatially connected, organismal‐habitat relationships. Globally, a suite of disturbances (e.g., agriculture, urbanization, climate change) degrades habitats and threatens biodiversity. A mosaic approach (in which connected, interacting collections of juxtaposed habitat patches are examined) provides a scientific foundation for addressing many disturbance‐related, ecologically based conservation problems. For example, if specific habitat types disproportionately increase biodiversity, these keystones should be incorporated into research and management plans. Our sampling of fish biodiversity and aquatic habitat along ten 3‐km sites within the Upper Neosho River subdrainage, KS, from June‐August 2013 yielded three generalizable ecological insights. First, specific types of mesohabitat patches (i.e., pool, riffle, run, and glide) were physically distinct and created unique mosaics of mesohabitats that varied across sites. Second, species richness was higher in riffle mesohabitats when mesohabitat size reflected field availability. Furthermore, habitat mosaics that included more riffles had greater habitat diversity and more fish species. Thus, riffles (<5% of sampled area) acted as keystone habitats. Third, additional conceptual development, which we initiate here, can broaden the identification of keystone habitats across ecosystems and further operationalize this concept for research and conservation. Thus, adopting a mosaic approach can increase scientific understanding of organismal‐habitat relationships, maintain natural biodiversity, advance spatial ecology, and facilitate effective conservation of native biodiversity in human‐altered ecosystems.

  5. Conserving biodiversity using risk management: hoax or hope?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Susan Hummel; Geoffrey H. Donovan; Thomas A. Spies; Miles A. Hemstrom

    2008-01-01

    Biodiversity has been called a form of ecosystem insurance. According to the "insurance hypothesis", the presence of many species protects against system decline, because built-in redundancies guarantee that some species will maintain key functions even if others fail. The hypothesis might have merit, but calling it "insurance" promotes an ambiguous...

  6. Financial costs of meeting global biodiversity conservation targets

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    McCarthy, Donal P.; Donald, Paul F.; Scharlemann, Jörn P.W.

    2012-01-01

    World governments have committed to halting human-induced extinctions and safeguarding important sites for biodiversity by 2020, but the financial costs of meeting these targets are largely unknown. We estimate the cost of reducing the extinction risk of all globally threatened bird species (by ≥1...

  7. International cooperation for biodiversity conservation : an economic analysis

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Alvarado Quesada, I.

    2015-01-01

    Biodiversity decline poses significant threats to current and future generations. Although species extinction has been a natural process since the formation of Earth, recent rates of extinction are estimated to be from 100 to 1000 times larger when compared to fossil records. Almost all of the

  8. 'Conservationists' and the 'Local People' in Biodiversity Conservation

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Studies on biodiversity in Africa show its rapid loss and degradation. This is commonly explained with non-sustainable use by local people. Across Africa, extensive systems of protected areas (PAs) have been established to mitigate this trend. Creation of PAs, however, resulted in manifold conflicts with people who depend ...

  9. Overcoming Hurdles: Teaching Guides To Interpret Biodiversity Conservation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kohl, Jon; Brown, Cynthia; Humke, Matt

    2001-01-01

    Highlights the development and use of bilingual nature guide training. Examines work at the RARE Center for tropical conservation in Central America. Speculates about the future of conservation interpretation. (DDR)

  10. Biodiversity and Habitat Markets—Policy, Economic, and Ecological implications of Market-Based Conservation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pindilli, Emily J.; Casey, Frank

    2015-10-26

    This report is a primer on market-like and market-based mechanisms designed to conserve biodiversity and habitat. The types of markets and market-based approaches that were implemented or are emerging to benefit biodiversity and habitat in the United States are examined. The central approaches considered in this report include payments for ecosystem services, conservation banks, habitat exchanges, and eco-labels. Based on literature reviews and input from experts and practitioners, the report characterizes each market-based approach including policy context and structure; the theoretical basis for applying market-based approaches; the ecological effectiveness of practices and tools for measuring performance; and the future outlook for biodiversity and habitat markets. This report draws from previous research and serves as a summary of pertinent information associated with biodiversity and habitat markets while providing references to materials that go into greater detail on specific topics.

  11. Biodiversity conservation should focus on no-take Marine Reserves: 94% of Marine Protected Areas allow fishing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Costello, Mark J; Ballantine, Bill

    2015-09-01

    Conservation needs places where nature is left wild; but only a quarter of coastal countries have no-take Marine Reserves. 'Marine Protected Areas' (MPAs) have been used to indicate conservation progress but we found that 94% allow fishing and thus cannot protect all aspects of biodiversity. Biodiversity conservation should focus on Marine Reserves, not MPAs. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  12. Personal circumstances and social characteristics as determinants of landholder participation in biodiversity conservation programs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moon, Katie; Marshall, Nadine; Cocklin, Chris

    2012-12-30

    Adequate conservation of biodiversity on private land remains elusive due, in part, to a failure to understand the personal circumstances and social characteristics of private landholders. Our aim was to identify those personal and social dimensions of landholders that might contribute to improved conservation policy and program design and, thereby, participation in private land conservation. We tested whether personal circumstances of landholders (e.g., lifestyle and wellbeing, information and knowledge, financial security) and social characteristics (e.g., attitudes, norms, and trust) would be important predictors of landholders' capacity and willingness to participate in biodiversity conservation programs. Forty-five participants and twenty-nine non-participants of biodiversity conservation programs in north Queensland, Australia, were surveyed to: 1) examine differences between their personal circumstances and social characteristics that may influence participation; and 2) explore whether personal circumstances and social characteristics were influenced by participation. The results revealed that, compared to participants, non-participants in conservation programs had significantly different personal circumstances and social characteristics for four of eight measured variables. Compared to participants, non-participants demonstrated a reduced capacity and willingness to participate in conservation programs. Participation did not appear to have a strong influence on participants' personal circumstances or social characteristics, and when social norms supported conservation, programs did not demonstrate additionality. Conservation policies that maintain or improve landholders' personal circumstances and that promote pro-environmental norms may result in increased participation and thereby conservation outcomes. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  13. Biodiversity conservation and a conception for a national desert park in Dzungaria Basin, Xinjiang

    OpenAIRE

    Xinshi Zhang; Haiping Tang; Lijuan Yan

    2008-01-01

    Dzungaria Basin in Xinjiang possesses the most abundant biological resources of animals and plants among the temperate deserts in the world. It has been influenced negatively by the human disturbance such as overgrazing, farming, wood harvesting, digging herbs and illegal hunting as well as by the rapid industrial development for mineral and energy resources such as oil and coal. A plan for biodiversity conservation is so urgent for the basin that the contradiction between biodiversity protec...

  14. An agglomeration payment for cost-effective biodiversity conservation in spatially structured landscapes

    OpenAIRE

    Drechsler, Martin; Johst, Karin; Wätzold, Frank; Shogren, Jason F.

    2007-01-01

    Compensation schemes in which land owners receive payments for voluntarily managing their land in a biodiversity-enhancing manner have become one of the most important instruments for biodiversity conservation worldwide. One key challenge when designing such schemes is to account for the spatial arrangement of habitats bearing in mind that for given total habitat area connected habitats are ecologically more valuable than isolated habitats. To integrate the spatial dimension in compensation s...

  15. The social implications of using drones for biodiversity conservation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sandbrook, Chris

    2015-11-01

    Unmanned aerial vehicles, or 'drones', appear to offer a flexible, accurate and affordable solution to some of the technical challenges of nature conservation monitoring and law enforcement. However, little attention has been given to their possible social impacts. In this paper, I review the possible social impacts of using drones for conservation, including on safety, privacy, psychological wellbeing, data security and the wider understanding of conservation problems. I argue that negative social impacts are probable under some circumstances and should be of concern for conservation for two reasons: (1) because conservation should follow good ethical practice; and (2) because negative social impacts could undermine conservation effectiveness in the long term. The paper concludes with a call for empirical research to establish whether the identified social risks of drones occur in reality and how they could be mitigated, and for self-regulation of drone use by the conservation sector to ensure good ethical practice and minimise the risk of unintended consequences.

  16. Characterising and predicting benthic biodiversity for conservation planning in deepwater environments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dunstan, Piers K; Althaus, Franziska; Williams, Alan; Bax, Nicholas J

    2012-01-01

    Understanding patterns of biodiversity in deep sea systems is increasingly important because human activities are extending further into these areas. However, obtaining data is difficult, limiting the ability of science to inform management decisions. We have used three different methods of quantifying biodiversity to describe patterns of biodiversity in an area that includes two marine reserves in deep water off southern Australia. We used biological data collected during a recent survey, combined with extensive physical data to model, predict and map three different attributes of biodiversity: distributions of common species, beta diversity and rank abundance distributions (RAD). The distribution of each of eight common species was unique, although all the species respond to a depth-correlated physical gradient. Changes in composition (beta diversity) were large, even between sites with very similar environmental conditions. Composition at any one site was highly uncertain, and the suite of species changed dramatically both across and down slope. In contrast, the distributions of the RAD components of biodiversity (community abundance, richness, and evenness) were relatively smooth across the study area, suggesting that assemblage structure (i.e. the distribution of abundances of species) is limited, irrespective of species composition. Seamounts had similar biodiversity based on metrics of species presence, beta diversity, total abundance, richness and evenness to the adjacent continental slope in the same depth ranges. These analyses suggest that conservation objectives need to clearly identify which aspects of biodiversity are valued, and employ an appropriate suite of methods to address these aspects, to ensure that conservation goals are met.

  17. The Middle Eastern Biodiversity Network: Generating and sharing knowledge for ecosystem management and conservation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Friedhelm Krupp

    2009-12-01

    Full Text Available Despite prevailing arid conditions, the diversity of terrestrial and freshwater biota in the Middle East is amazingly high and marine biodiversity is the second highest on Earth. Throughout the region, threats to the environment are moderate to severe. Despite the outstanding economic and ecological importance of biological diversity, the capacity in biodiversity-related research and education is inadequate in most parts of the Middle East. The ";;Middle Eastern Biodiversity Network";; (MEBN, founded in 2006 by six universities and research institutes in Iran, Jordan, Germany, Lebanon and Yemen was designed to fill this gap. An integrated approach is taken to upgrade biodiversity research and education to improve regional ecosystem conservation and management capacities. A wide range of activities are carried out in the framework of the Network, including capacity building in biological collection management and professional natural history curatorship, developing university curricula in biodiversity, conducting scientific research, organising workshops and conferences on Middle Eastern biodiversity, and translating the results of biodiversity research into conservation and sustainable development.

  18. The role of landscape connectivity in planning and implementing conservation and restoration priorities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deborah A. Rudnick; Sadie J. Ryan; Paul Beier; Samuel A. Cushman; Fred Dieffenbach; Clinton W. Epps; Leah R. Gerber; Joel Hartter; Jeff S. Jenness; Julia Kintsch; Adina M. Merenlender; Ryan M. Perkl; Damian V. Preziosi; Stephen C. Trombulak

    2012-01-01

    Landscape connectivity, the extent to which a landscape facilitates the movements of organisms and their genes, faces critical threats from both fragmentation and habitat loss. Many conservation efforts focus on protecting and enhancing connectivity to offset the impacts of habitat loss and fragmentation on biodiversity conservation, and to increase the resilience of...

  19. Biodiversity Conservation in Rice Paddies in China: Toward Ecological Sustainability

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yufeng Luo

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available Rice paddies are artificial wetlands that supply people with food and provide wildlife with habitats, breeding areas, shelters, feeding grounds and other services, and rice paddies play an important part in agricultural ecological systems. However, modern agricultural practices with large-scale intensive farming have significantly accelerated the homogenization of the paddy field ecosystem. Modern agriculture mostly relies on chemically-driven modern varieties and irrigation to ensure high production, resulting in the deterioration and imbalance of the ecosystem. Consequently, outbreaks of diseases, insects and weeds have become more frequent in paddy fields. This paper describes the current situation of rice paddy biodiversity in China and analyzes the community characteristics of arthropods and weedy plants. Meanwhile, we discuss how biodiversity was affected by modern agriculture changes, which have brought about a mounting crisis threatening to animals and plants once common in rice paddies. Measures should be focused to firstly preventing further deterioration and, then, also, promoting restoration processes. Ecological sustainability can be achieved by restoring paddy field biodiversity through protecting the ecological environment surrounding the paddy fields, improving paddy cropping patterns, growing rice with less agricultural chemicals and chemical fertilizers, constructing paddy systems with animals and plants and promoting ecological education and public awareness.

  20. Cultural valuation and biodiversity conservation in the Upper Guinea forest, West Africa

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    James A. Fraser

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available The cultural valuation of biodiversity has taken on renewed importance over the last two decades as the ecosystem services framework has become widely adopted. Conservation initiatives increasingly use ecosystem service frameworks to render tropical forest landscapes and their peoples legible to market-oriented initiatives such as REDD+ and biodiversity offsetting schemes. Ecosystem service approaches have been widely criticized by scholars in the social sciences and humanities for their narrow focus on a small number of easily quantifiable and marketable services and a reductionist and sometimes simplistic approach to culture. We address the need to combine methods from each of the "three cultures" of natural science, quantitative social science, and qualitative social science/humanities in conceptualizing the relationship between cultural valuation and biodiversity conservation. We combine qualitative data with forest inventories and a quantitative index of cultural value to evaluate the relationship between cultural valuation and biodiversity conservation in Upper Guinea forest in Liberia, West Africa. Our study focuses on "sacred agroforests," spaces that are associated with Mande macro-language speaking groups such as the Loma. We demonstrate that sacred agroforests are associated with different cultural values compared with secondary forests. Although biodiversity and biomass are similar, sacred agroforests exhibit a different species composition, especially of culturally salient species, increasing overall landscape agro-biodiversity. Sacred agroforests are also shaped and conserved by local cultural institutions revolving around ancestor worship, ritual, and the metaphysical conceptual category "salɛ." We conclude that to understand the relationship between cultural valuation and biodiversity conservation, interpretivist approaches such as phenomenology should be employed alongside positivist ecosystem service frameworks.

  1. Prospects for reconciling the conflict between economic growth and biodiversity conservation with technological progress.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Czech, Brian

    2008-12-01

    The conflict between economic growth and biodiversity conservation is understood in portions of academia and sometimes acknowledged in political circles. Nevertheless, there is not a unified response. In political and policy circles, the environmental Kuznets curve (EKC) is posited to solve the conflict between economic growth and environmental protection. In academia, however, the EKC has been deemed fallacious in macroeconomic scenarios and largely irrelevant to biodiversity. A more compelling response to the conflict is that it may be resolved with technological progress. Herein I review the conflict between economic growth and biodiversity conservation in the absence of technological progress, explore the prospects for technological progress to reconcile that conflict, and provide linguistic suggestions for describing the relationships among economic growth, technological progress, and biodiversity conservation. The conflict between economic growth and biodiversity conservation is based on the first two laws of thermodynamics and principles of ecology such as trophic levels and competitive exclusion. In this biophysical context, the human economy grows at the competitive exclusion of nonhuman species in the aggregate. Reconciling the conflict via technological progress has not occurred and is infeasible because of the tight linkage between technological progress and economic growth at current levels of technology. Surplus production in existing economic sectors is required for conducting the research and development necessary for bringing new technologies to market. Technological regimes also reflect macroeconomic goals, and if the goal is economic growth, reconciliatory technologies are less likely to be developed. As the economy grows, the loss of biodiversity may be partly mitigated with end-use innovation that increases technical efficiency, but this type of technological progress requires policies that are unlikely if the conflict between economic growth

  2. The social implications of using drones for biodiversity conservation

    OpenAIRE

    Sandbrook, Chris

    2015-01-01

    Unmanned aerial vehicles, or ?drones?, appear to offer a flexible, accurate and affordable solution to some of the technical challenges of nature conservation monitoring and law enforcement. However, little attention has been given to their possible social impacts. In this paper, I review the possible social impacts of using drones for conservation, including on safety, privacy, psychological wellbeing, data security and the wider understanding of conservation problems. I argue that negative ...

  3. Is community-based ecotourism a good use of biodiversity conservation funds?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kiss, Agnes

    2004-05-01

    Community-based ecotourism (CBET) has become a popular tool for biodiversity conservation, based on the principle that biodiversity must pay for itself by generating economic benefits, particularly for local people. There are many examples of projects that produce revenues for local communities and improve local attitudes towards conservation, but the contribution of CBET to conservation and local economic development is limited by factors such as the small areas and few people involved, limited earnings, weak linkages between biodiversity gains and commercial success, and the competitive and specialized nature of the tourism industry. Many CBET projects cited as success stories actually involve little change in existing local land and resource-use practices, provide only a modest supplement to local livelihoods, and remain dependent on external support for long periods, if not indefinitely. Investment in CBET might be justified in cases where such small changes and benefits can yield significant conservation and social benefits, although it must still be recognized as requiring a long term funding commitment. Here, I aim to identify conditions under which CBET is, and is not, likely to be effective, efficient and sustainable compared with alternative approaches for conserving biodiversity. I also highlight the need for better data and more rigorous analysis of both conservation and economic impacts.

  4. Combining landscape-level conservation planning and biodiversity offset programs: a case study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Underwood, Jared G

    2011-01-01

    Habitat loss is a major factor in the endangerment and extinction of species around the world. One promising strategy to balance continued habitat loss and biodiversity conservation is that of biodiversity offsets. However, a major concern with offset programs is their consistency with landscape-level conservation goals. While merging offset policies and landscape-level conservation planning is thought to provide advantages over a traditional disconnected approach, few such landscape-level conservation-offset plans have been designed and implemented, so the effectiveness of such a strategy remains uncertain. In this study, we quantitatively assess the conservation impact of combining landscape-level conservation planning and biodiversity offset programs by comparing regions of San Diego County, USA with the combined approach to regions with only an offset program. This comparison is generally very difficult due to a variety of complicating factors. We overcome these complications and quantify the benefits to rare and threatened species of implementing a combined approach by assessing the amount of each species' predicted distribution, and the number of documented locations, conserved in comparison to the same metric for areas with an offset policy alone. We found that adoption of the combined approach has increased conservation for many rare species, often 5-10 times more than in the comparison area, and that conservation has been focused in the areas most important for these species. The level of conservation achieved reduces uncertainty that these species will persist in the region into the future. This San Diego County example demonstrates the potential benefits of combining landscape-level conservation planning and biodiversity offset programs.

  5. Both Direct and Vicarious Experiences of Nature Affect Children's Willingness to Conserve Biodiversity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Soga, Masashi; Gaston, Kevin J; Yamaura, Yuichi; Kurisu, Kiyo; Hanaki, Keisuke

    2016-05-25

    Children are becoming less likely to have direct contact with nature. This ongoing loss of human interactions with nature, the extinction of experience, is viewed as one of the most fundamental obstacles to addressing global environmental challenges. However, the consequences for biodiversity conservation have been examined very little. Here, we conducted a questionnaire survey of elementary schoolchildren and investigated effects of the frequency of direct (participating in nature-based activities) and vicarious experiences of nature (reading books or watching TV programs about nature and talking about nature with parents or friends) on their affective attitudes (individuals' emotional feelings) toward and willingness to conserve biodiversity. A total of 397 children participated in the surveys in Tokyo. Children's affective attitudes and willingness to conserve biodiversity were positively associated with the frequency of both direct and vicarious experiences of nature. Path analysis showed that effects of direct and vicarious experiences on children's willingness to conserve biodiversity were mediated by their affective attitudes. This study demonstrates that children who frequently experience nature are likely to develop greater emotional affinity to and support for protecting biodiversity. We suggest that children should be encouraged to experience nature and be provided with various types of these experiences.

  6. Understanding farmers' strategic decision-making processes and the implications for biodiversity conservation policy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Farmar-Bowers, Quentin; Lane, Ruth

    2009-02-01

    The conservation of biodiversity is an important issue world wide and in Australia the maintenance of native biodiversity on farms makes an important contribution to overall conservation objectives. This paper seeks to explain Australian farmers' rationale for maintaining biodiversity on their farms for personal as opposed to business reasons by developing a decision-systems theory from in-depth interviews. This difference has implications for policy development. The decision-systems theory is divided into two main sections. The first section contains five parts. (1) A hierarchy of motivation stories, (2) the concept of suitability and availability of opportunities, (3) a hierarchy of three decision-systems, (4) the concept of personal career paths, (5) the concept of Lenses. The second section contains one part, a policy classification system called 'boxes of influence' that suggests how policy developers can use the information in the first section to develop new biodiversity conservation policy. The paper suggests that decision-systems theory could be used to shed new light on current trends in agriculture and become an important investigative tool for policy development concerning the conservation of biodiversity on farms.

  7. Both Direct and Vicarious Experiences of Nature Affect Children’s Willingness to Conserve Biodiversity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Masashi Soga

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available Children are becoming less likely to have direct contact with nature. This ongoing loss of human interactions with nature, the extinction of experience, is viewed as one of the most fundamental obstacles to addressing global environmental challenges. However, the consequences for biodiversity conservation have been examined very little. Here, we conducted a questionnaire survey of elementary schoolchildren and investigated effects of the frequency of direct (participating in nature-based activities and vicarious experiences of nature (reading books or watching TV programs about nature and talking about nature with parents or friends on their affective attitudes (individuals’ emotional feelings toward and willingness to conserve biodiversity. A total of 397 children participated in the surveys in Tokyo. Children’s affective attitudes and willingness to conserve biodiversity were positively associated with the frequency of both direct and vicarious experiences of nature. Path analysis showed that effects of direct and vicarious experiences on children’s willingness to conserve biodiversity were mediated by their affective attitudes. This study demonstrates that children who frequently experience nature are likely to develop greater emotional affinity to and support for protecting biodiversity. We suggest that children should be encouraged to experience nature and be provided with various types of these experiences.

  8. Biodiversity conservation and indigenous land management in the era of self-determination.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schmidt, Paige M; Peterson, Markus J

    2009-12-01

    Indigenous people inhabit approximately 85% of areas designated for biodiversity conservation worldwide. They also continue to struggle for recognition and preservation of cultural identities, lifestyles, and livelihoods--a struggle contingent on control and protection of traditional lands and associated natural resources (hereafter, self-determination). Indigenous lands and the biodiversity they support are increasingly threatened because of human population growth and per capita consumption. Application of the Endangered Species Act (ESA) to tribal lands in the United States provides a rich example of the articulation between biodiversity conservation and indigenous peoples' struggle for self-determination. We found a paradoxical relationship whereby tribal governments are simultaneously and contradictory sovereign nations; yet their communities depend on the U.S. government for protection through the federal-trust doctrine. The unique legal status of tribal lands, their importance for conserving federally protected species, and federal environmental regulations' failure to define applicability to tribal lands creates conflict between tribal sovereignty, self-determination, and constitutional authority. We reviewed Secretarial Order 3206, the U.S. policy on "American Indian tribal rights, federal-tribal trust responsibilities, and the ESA," and evaluated how it influences ESA implementation on tribal lands. We found improved biodiversity conservation and tribal self-determination requires revision of the fiduciary relationship between the federal government and the tribes to establish clear, legal definitions regarding land rights, applicability of environmental laws, and financial responsibilities. Such actions will allow provision of adequate funding and training to tribal leaders and resource managers, government agency personnel responsible for biodiversity conservation and land management, and environmental policy makers. Increased capacity, cooperation, and

  9. Market-based mechanisms for biodiversity conservation: a review of existing schemes and an outline for a global mechanism

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Alvarado Quesada, I.; Hein, L.G.; Weikard, H.P.

    2014-01-01

    Continuous decline of biodiversity over the past decades suggests that efforts to decrease biodiversity loss have been insufficient. One option to deal with this problem is the use of market-based mechanisms for biodiversity conservation. Several studies have analysed such mechanisms individually,

  10. Conservation Evo-Devo: Preserving Biodiversity by Understanding Its Origins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Campbell, Calum S; Adams, Colin E; Bean, Colin W; Parsons, Kevin J

    2017-10-01

    Unprecedented rates of species extinction increase the urgency for effective conservation biology management practices. Thus, any improvements in practice are vital and we suggest that conservation can be enhanced through recent advances in evolutionary biology, specifically advances put forward by evolutionary developmental biology (i.e., evo-devo). There are strong overlapping conceptual links between conservation and evo-devo whereby both fields focus on evolutionary potential. In particular, benefits to conservation can be derived from some of the main areas of evo-devo research, namely phenotypic plasticity, modularity and integration, and mechanistic investigations of the precise developmental and genetic processes that determine phenotypes. Using examples we outline how evo-devo can expand into conservation biology, an opportunity which holds great promise for advancing both fields. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  11. Importance of Baseline Specification in Evaluating Conservation Interventions and Achieving No Net Loss of Biodiversity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bull, J W; Gordon, A; Law, E A; Suttle, K B; Milner-Gulland, E J

    2014-01-01

    There is an urgent need to improve the evaluation of conservation interventions. This requires specifying an objective and a frame of reference from which to measure performance. Reference frames can be baselines (i.e., known biodiversity at a fixed point in history) or counterfactuals (i.e., a scenario that would have occurred without the intervention). Biodiversity offsets are interventions with the objective of no net loss of biodiversity (NNL). We used biodiversity offsets to analyze the effects of the choice of reference frame on whether interventions met stated objectives. We developed 2 models to investigate the implications of setting different frames of reference in regions subject to various biodiversity trends and anthropogenic impacts. First, a general analytic model evaluated offsets against a range of baseline and counterfactual specifications. Second, a simulation model then replicated these results with a complex real world case study: native grassland offsets in Melbourne, Australia. Both models showed that achieving NNL depended upon the interaction between reference frame and background biodiversity trends. With a baseline, offsets were less likely to achieve NNL where biodiversity was decreasing than where biodiversity was stable or increasing. With a no-development counterfactual, however, NNL was achievable only where biodiversity was declining. Otherwise, preventing development was better for biodiversity. Uncertainty about compliance was a stronger determinant of success than uncertainty in underlying biodiversity trends. When only development and offset locations were considered, offsets sometimes resulted in NNL, but not across an entire region. Choice of reference frame determined feasibility and effort required to attain objectives when designing and evaluating biodiversity offset schemes. We argue the choice is thus of fundamental importance for conservation policy. Our results shed light on situations in which biodiversity offsets may

  12. Testing the Efficacy of Global Biodiversity Hotspots for Insect Conservation: The Case of South African Katydids.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Corinna S Bazelet

    Full Text Available The use of endemism and vascular plants only for biodiversity hotspot delineation has long been contested. Few studies have focused on the efficacy of global biodiversity hotspots for the conservation of insects, an important, abundant, and often ignored component of biodiversity. We aimed to test five alternative diversity measures for hotspot delineation and examine the efficacy of biodiversity hotspots for conserving a non-typical target organism, South African katydids. Using a 1° fishnet grid, we delineated katydid hotspots in two ways: (1 count-based: grid cells in the top 10% of total, endemic, threatened and/or sensitive species richness; vs. (2 score-based: grid cells with a mean value in the top 10% on a scoring system which scored each species on the basis of its IUCN Red List threat status, distribution, mobility and trophic level. We then compared katydid hotspots with each other and with recognized biodiversity hotspots. Grid cells within biodiversity hotspots had significantly higher count-based and score-based diversity than non-hotspot grid cells. There was a significant association between the three types of hotspots. Of the count-based measures, endemic species richness was the best surrogate for the others. However, the score-based measure out-performed all count-based diversity measures. Species richness was the least successful surrogate of all. The strong performance of the score-based method for hotspot prediction emphasizes the importance of including species' natural history information for conservation decision-making, and is easily adaptable to other organisms. Furthermore, these results add empirical support for the efficacy of biodiversity hotspots in conserving non-target organisms.

  13. Testing the Efficacy of Global Biodiversity Hotspots for Insect Conservation: The Case of South African Katydids.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bazelet, Corinna S; Thompson, Aileen C; Naskrecki, Piotr

    2016-01-01

    The use of endemism and vascular plants only for biodiversity hotspot delineation has long been contested. Few studies have focused on the efficacy of global biodiversity hotspots for the conservation of insects, an important, abundant, and often ignored component of biodiversity. We aimed to test five alternative diversity measures for hotspot delineation and examine the efficacy of biodiversity hotspots for conserving a non-typical target organism, South African katydids. Using a 1° fishnet grid, we delineated katydid hotspots in two ways: (1) count-based: grid cells in the top 10% of total, endemic, threatened and/or sensitive species richness; vs. (2) score-based: grid cells with a mean value in the top 10% on a scoring system which scored each species on the basis of its IUCN Red List threat status, distribution, mobility and trophic level. We then compared katydid hotspots with each other and with recognized biodiversity hotspots. Grid cells within biodiversity hotspots had significantly higher count-based and score-based diversity than non-hotspot grid cells. There was a significant association between the three types of hotspots. Of the count-based measures, endemic species richness was the best surrogate for the others. However, the score-based measure out-performed all count-based diversity measures. Species richness was the least successful surrogate of all. The strong performance of the score-based method for hotspot prediction emphasizes the importance of including species' natural history information for conservation decision-making, and is easily adaptable to other organisms. Furthermore, these results add empirical support for the efficacy of biodiversity hotspots in conserving non-target organisms.

  14. Research priorities for conservation and natural resource management in Oceania's small-island developing states.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weeks, R; Adams, V M

    2018-02-01

    For conservation science to effectively inform management, research must focus on creating the scientific knowledge required to solve conservation problems. We identified research questions that, if answered, would increase the effectiveness of conservation and natural resource management practice and policy in Oceania's small-island developing states. We asked conservation professionals from academia, governmental, and nongovernmental organizations across the region to propose such questions and then identify which were of high priority in an online survey. We compared the high-priority questions with research questions identified globally and for other regions. Of 270 questions proposed by respondents, 38 were considered high priority, including: What are the highest priority areas for conservation in the face of increasing resource demand and climate change? How should marine protected areas be networked to account for connectivity and climate change? What are the most effective fisheries management policies that contribute to sustainable coral reef fisheries? High-priority questions related to the particular challenges of undertaking conservation on small-island developing states and the need for a research agenda that is responsive to the sociocultural context of Oceania. Research priorities for Oceania relative to elsewhere were broadly similar but differed in specific issues relevant to particular conservation contexts. These differences emphasize the importance of involving local practitioners in the identification of research priorities. Priorities were reasonably well aligned among sectoral groups. Only a few questions were widely considered answered, which may indicate a smaller-than-expected knowledge-action gap. We believe these questions can be used to strengthen research collaborations between scientists and practitioners working to further conservation and natural resource management in this region. © 2017 The Authors. Conservation Biology

  15. Diversity and distribution of aquatic insects in Southern Brazil wetlands: implications for biodiversity conservation in a Neotropical region

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Leonardo Maltchik

    2012-03-01

    Full Text Available The selection of priority areas is an enormous challenge for biodiversity conservation. Some biogeographic methods have been used to identify the priority areas to conservation, and panbiogeography is one of them. This study aimed at the utilization of panbiogeographic tools, to identify the distribution patterns of aquatic insect genera, in wetland systems of an extensive area in the Neotropical region (~280 000km², and to compare the distribution of the biogeographic units identified by the aquatic insects, with the conservation units of Southern Brazil. We analyzed the distribution pattern of 82 genera distributed in four orders of aquatic insects (Diptera, Odonata, Ephemeroptera and Trichoptera in Southern Brazil wetlands. Therefore, 32 biogeographic nodes corresponded to the priority areas for conservation of the aquatic insect diversity. Among this total, 13 were located in the Atlantic Rainforest, 16 in the Pampa and three amongst both biomes. The distribution of nodes showed that only 15% of the dispersion centers of insects were inserted in conservation units. The four priority areas pointed by node cluster criterion must be considered in further inclusions of areas for biodiversity conservation in Southern Brazil wetlands, since such areas present species from differrent ancestral biota. The inclusion of such areas into the conservation units would be a strong way to conserve the aquatic biodiversity in this region.La selección de áreas prioritarias es un enorme desafío para la conservación de la biodiversidad. Métodos biogeográficos se han utilizado para identificar áreas prioritarias para la conservación, como la panbiogeografía. Este estudio tuvo como objetivo el empleo de herramientas panbiogeográficas, para identificar los patrones de distribución de los géneros de insectos acuáticos, en los sistemas de humedales de una extensa área de la región Neotropical (~280 000km², y así comparar la distribución de las

  16. Ethnopharmacology, food production, nutrition and biodiversity conservation: towards a sustainable future for indigenous peoples.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heywood, Vernon H

    2011-09-01

    It is becoming increasingly clear that ethnopharmacology cannot be disassociated from food production, human nutrition and the conservation of the biodiversity that constitutes its resource base. This paper aims to provide a perspective of ethnopharmacology that explicitly extends the range of disciplines it covers so as to embrace food and nutrition and the biodiversity basis, both wild and agricultural, and also places it in the context of the dramatic changes to our planet that we are experiencing during a period of rapid global change and the impacts that these changes are having on human health and nutrition and on its resource base. A review is made of recent initiatives and developments that show linkages between ethnopharmacology, agriculture, food production, nutrition and biodiversity conservation. Ethnopharmacology, biodiversity, agriculture, food and nutrition are inextricably linked but suffer from compartmentalization and a lack of communication which have to be overcome if progress is to be made. Fortunately, a convergence of interest between the agricultural biodiversity and the biodiversity conservation sectors has emerged in recent years and there is an increased appreciation of the need to adopt a wider approach to human nutrition than the conventional agricultural model allows; there is also a greater awareness of the important role played by diversity of crops, especially local species, and consumption of wild species in achieving balanced nutrition. An increased recognition of the key role of local communities in managing agricultural biodiversity is evident. While ethnopharmacologists have expressed concern at the relentless loss of biodiversity, there has been little direct involvement but it is perhaps now time to consider a more proactive role. Attention is also drawn to the need to assess the implications of global change for ethnopharmacology. Ethnopharmacologists need to take much more cognizance of the fate of the resource base - the

  17. INVESTIGATION ON BIODIVERSITY AND CONSERVATION OF FRESHWATER FISHES IN INDONESIA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sudarto Sudarto

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available Indonesia is one of the richest regions in the world in terms of biodiversity. However, recent evidence has shown that tropical forests destruction has maintained at a high rate over the last few years in this country. At the same time, living resources in Indonesian freshwater ecosystems are important: this country ranks at number seven in terms of production of inland capture fisheries with 323,150 tonnes in 2008. Freshwater fishes represent 42% of the total estimated ichthyofauna, concentrated in 0.01% of the total water covered environment. This environment is closer to human activities, making it critically vulnerable to adverse impacts. Furthermore, there has been some recent debates on the general sustainability of fisheries and aquaculture production systems. This research was focused on initiating a multi-scale study of fish biodiversity in freshwater environments. Two specific actions have been started. A review based on the analyses of the existing scientific literature and of databases on fish taxonomy and distributions. In parallel to this work, a global analysis of the distribution of fish diversity in Indonesia was undertaken. This work aims at identifying the major features of this resource as well as its current and future threats.

  18. Conservation Planning for Offsetting the Impacts of Development: A Case Study of Biodiversity and Renewable Energy in the Mojave Desert.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kreitler, Jason; Schloss, Carrie A; Soong, Oliver; Hannah, Lee; Davis, Frank W

    2015-01-01

    Balancing society's competing needs of development and conservation requires careful consideration of tradeoffs. Renewable energy development and biodiversity conservation are often considered beneficial environmental goals. The direct footprint and disturbance of renewable energy, however, can displace species' habitat and negatively impact populations and natural communities if sited without ecological consideration. Offsets have emerged as a potentially useful tool to mitigate residual impacts after trying to avoid, minimize, or restore affected sites. Yet the problem of efficiently designing a set of offset sites becomes increasingly complex where many species or many sites are involved. Spatial conservation prioritization tools are designed to handle this problem, but have seen little application to offset siting and analysis. To address this need we designed an offset siting support tool for the Desert Renewable Energy Conservation Plan (DRECP) of California, and present a case study of hypothetical impacts from solar development in the Western Mojave subsection. We compare two offset scenarios designed to mitigate a hypothetical 15,331 ha derived from proposed utility-scale solar energy development (USSED) projects. The first scenario prioritizes offsets based precisely on impacted features, while the second scenario offsets impacts to maximize biodiversity conservation gains in the region. The two methods only agree on 28% of their prioritized sites and differ in meeting species-specific offset goals. Differences between the two scenarios highlight the importance of clearly specifying choices and priorities for offset siting and mitigation in general. Similarly, the effects of background climate and land use change may lessen the durability or effectiveness of offsets if not considered. Our offset siting support tool was designed specifically for the DRECP area, but with minor code modification could work well in other offset analyses, and could provide

  19. Incentivizing biodiversity conservation in artisanal fishing communities through territorial user rights and business model innovation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gelcich, Stefan; Donlan, C Josh

    2015-08-01

    Territorial user rights for fisheries are being promoted to enhance the sustainability of small-scale fisheries. Using Chile as a case study, we designed a market-based program aimed at improving fishers' livelihoods while incentivizing the establishment and enforcement of no-take areas within areas managed with territorial user right regimes. Building on explicit enabling conditions (i.e., high levels of governance, participation, and empowerment), we used a place-based, human-centered approach to design a program that will have the necessary support and buy-in from local fishers to result in landscape-scale biodiversity benefits. Transactional infrastructure must be complex enough to capture the biodiversity benefits being created, but simple enough so that the program can be scaled up and is attractive to potential financiers. Biodiversity benefits created must be commoditized, and desired behavioral changes must be verified within a transactional context. Demand must be generated for fisher-created biodiversity benefits in order to attract financing and to scale the market model. Important design decisions around these 3 components-supply, transactional infrastructure, and demand-must be made based on local social-ecological conditions. Our market model, which is being piloted in Chile, is a flexible foundation on which to base scalable opportunities to operationalize a scheme that incentivizes local, verifiable biodiversity benefits via conservation behaviors by fishers that could likely result in significant marine conservation gains and novel cross-sector alliances. © 2015, Society for Conservation Biology.

  20. Implications of Current Ecological Thinking for Biodiversity Conservation: a Review of the Salient Issues

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tabatha J. Wallington

    2005-06-01

    Full Text Available Given escalating concern worldwide about the loss of biodiversity, and given biodiversity's centrality to quality of life, it is imperative that current ecological knowledge fully informs societal decision making. Over the past two decades, ecological science has undergone many significant shifts in emphasis and perspective, which have important implications for how we manage ecosystems and species. In particular, a shift has occurred from the equilibrium paradigm to one that recognizes the dynamic, non-equilibrium nature of ecosystems. Revised thinking about the spatial and temporal dynamics of ecological systems has important implications for management. Thus, it is of growing concern to ecologists and others that these recent developments have not been translated into information useful to managers and policy makers. Many conservation policies and plans are still based on equilibrium assumptions. A fundamental difficulty with integrating current ecological thinking into biodiversity policy and management planning is that field observations have yet to provide compelling evidence for many of the relationships suggested by non-equilibrium ecology. Yet despite this scientific uncertainty, management and policy decisions must still be made. This paper was motivated by the need for considered scientific debate on the significance of current ideas in theoretical ecology for biodiversity conservation. This paper aims to provide a platform for such discussion by presenting a critical synthesis of recent ecological literature that (1 identifies core issues in ecological theory, and (2 explores the implications of current ecological thinking for biodiversity conservation.

  1. How Well Does LCA Model Land Use Impacts on Biodiversity?--A Comparison with Approaches from Ecology and Conservation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Curran, Michael; de Souza, Danielle Maia; Antón, Assumpció; Teixeira, Ricardo F M; Michelsen, Ottar; Vidal-Legaz, Beatriz; Sala, Serenella; Milà i Canals, Llorenç

    2016-03-15

    The modeling of land use impacts on biodiversity is considered a priority in life cycle assessment (LCA). Many diverging approaches have been proposed in an expanding literature on the topic. The UNEP/SETAC Life Cycle Initiative is engaged in building consensus on a shared modeling framework to highlight best-practice and guide model application by practitioners. In this paper, we evaluated the performance of 31 models from both the LCA and the ecology/conservation literature (20 from LCA, 11 from non-LCA fields) according to a set of criteria reflecting (i) model completeness, (ii) biodiversity representation, (iii) impact pathway coverage, (iv) scientific quality, and (v) stakeholder acceptance. We show that LCA models tend to perform worse than those from ecology and conservation (although not significantly), implying room for improvement. We identify seven best-practice recommendations that can be implemented immediately to improve LCA models based on existing approaches in the literature. We further propose building a "consensus model" through weighted averaging of existing information, to complement future development. While our research focuses on conceptual model design, further quantitative comparison of promising models in shared case studies is an essential prerequisite for future informed model choice.

  2. Use and Conservation of Biodiversity: both sides of the coin

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rubens Onofre Nodari

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available Biodiversidade, tanto a palavra como o conceito se tornaram, nas últimas décadas, difusos no imaginário coletivo e na literatura acadêmica. No entanto, ainda que a percepção da variedade de formas de vida esteja presente em todos os grupos humanos, desde a pré-história, o conceito de biodiversidade é bastante recente. Foi concebido por Walter G. Rosen, do National Research Council / National Academy of Sciences (NRC/NAS, em 1985, durante a organização do National Forum on BioDiversity (Fórum Nacional sobre BioDiversidade, evento realizado na capital norte-americana, Washington, de 21 a 24 de setembro de 1986, sob os auspícios da NAS e do Smithsonian Institute (Franco 2013, Wilson 1997...

  3. Winners and losers of national and global efforts to reconcile agricultural intensification and biodiversity conservation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Egli, Lukas; Meyer, Carsten; Scherber, Christoph; Kreft, Holger; Tscharntke, Teja

    2018-05-01

    Closing yield gaps within existing croplands, and thereby avoiding further habitat conversions, is a prominently and controversially discussed strategy to meet the rising demand for agricultural products, while minimizing biodiversity impacts. The agricultural intensification associated with such a strategy poses additional threats to biodiversity within agricultural landscapes. The uneven spatial distribution of both yield gaps and biodiversity provides opportunities for reconciling agricultural intensification and biodiversity conservation through spatially optimized intensification. Here, we integrate distribution and habitat information for almost 20,000 vertebrate species with land-cover and land-use datasets. We estimate that projected agricultural intensification between 2000 and 2040 would reduce the global biodiversity value of agricultural lands by 11%, relative to 2000. Contrasting these projections with spatial land-use optimization scenarios reveals that 88% of projected biodiversity loss could be avoided through globally coordinated land-use planning, implying huge efficiency gains through international cooperation. However, global-scale optimization also implies a highly uneven distribution of costs and benefits, resulting in distinct "winners and losers" in terms of national economic development, food security, food sovereignty or conservation. Given conflicting national interests and lacking effective governance mechanisms to guarantee equitable compensation of losers, multinational land-use optimization seems politically unlikely. In turn, 61% of projected biodiversity loss could be avoided through nationally focused optimization, and 33% through optimization within just 10 countries. Targeted efforts to improve the capacity for integrated land-use planning for sustainable intensification especially in these countries, including the strengthening of institutions that can arbitrate subnational land-use conflicts, may offer an effective, yet

  4. Challenges in global biodiversity conservation and solutions that cross sociology, politics, economics and ecology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hoban, Sean; Vernesi, Cristiano

    2012-12-23

    The study and practice of conservation biology is inherently interdisciplinary, addresses short and long time-scales and occurs within complex human-natural interfaces. Zoos and aquaria, in partnership with researchers, other non-government organizations, government, industry and educators, are combining knowledge of species and ecosystems with economics, psychology and law to create solutions for conserving biodiversity. From 22 to 25 May, the Conservation Forum of the European Association of Zoos and Aquaria was a venue for discussing conservation research, education and interventions, from the scale of villages to global policy.

  5. Integrated action planning for biodiversity conservation and sustainable use of highland aquatic resources

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bunting, Stuart W.; Luo, S.; Cai, K.

    2016-01-01

    The need for enhanced environmental planning and management for highland aquatic resources is described and rationale for integrated action planning presented. Past action planning initiatives for biodiversity conservation and wetland management are reviewed. A reflective account is given...... of integrated action planning from five sites in China, India and Vietnam. Eight planning phases are described encompassing: stakeholder assessment and partner selection; rapport building and agreement on collaboration; integrated biodiversity, ecosystem services, livelihoods and policy assessment; problem...... analysis and target setting; strategic planning; planning and organisation of activities; coordinated implementation and monitoring; evaluation and revised target-setting. The scope and targeting of actions was evaluated using the DPSIR framework and compatibility with biodiversity conservation and socio...

  6. Funding begets biodiversity

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ahrends, Antje; Burgess, Neil David; Gereau, Roy E.

    2011-01-01

    Aim Effective conservation of biodiversity relies on an unbiased knowledge of its distribution. Conservation priority assessments are typically based on the levels of species richness, endemism and threat. Areas identified as important receive the majority of conservation investments, often...... facilitating further research that results in more species discoveries. Here, we test whether there is circularity between funding and perceived biodiversity, which may reinforce the conservation status of areas already perceived to be important while other areas with less initial funding may remain overlooked......, and variances decomposed in partial regressions. Cross-correlations are used to assess whether perceived biodiversity drives funding or vice versa. Results Funding explained 65% of variation in perceived biodiversity patterns – six times more variation than accounted for by 34 candidate environmental factors...

  7. Research Priorities from Animal Behaviour for Maximising Conservation Progress.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Greggor, Alison L; Berger-Tal, Oded; Blumstein, Daniel T; Angeloni, Lisa; Bessa-Gomes, Carmen; Blackwell, Bradley F; St Clair, Colleen Cassady; Crooks, Kevin; de Silva, Shermin; Fernández-Juricic, Esteban; Goldenberg, Shifra Z; Mesnick, Sarah L; Owen, Megan; Price, Catherine J; Saltz, David; Schell, Christopher J; Suarez, Andrew V; Swaisgood, Ronald R; Winchell, Clark S; Sutherland, William J

    2016-12-01

    Poor communication between academic researchers and wildlife managers limits conservation progress and innovation. As a result, input from overlapping fields, such as animal behaviour, is underused in conservation management despite its demonstrated utility as a conservation tool and countless papers advocating its use. Communication and collaboration across these two disciplines are unlikely to improve without clearly identified management needs and demonstrable impacts of behavioural-based conservation management. To facilitate this process, a team of wildlife managers and animal behaviour researchers conducted a research prioritisation exercise, identifying 50 key questions that have great potential to resolve critical conservation and management problems. The resulting agenda highlights the diversity and extent of advances that both fields could achieve through collaboration. Copyright © 2016 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.

  8. Diversity at stake : a farmers' perspective on biodiversity and conservation in western Mexico

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Gerritsen, P.R.W.

    2002-01-01

    This study seeks to contribute to the scientific debate on biodiversity conservation in protected natural areas that are inhabited by local farming communities. More specifically, by combining rural sociological and community forestry theory it aims at understanding the farmers' role in

  9. ECOLOGICAL INTELLIGENCE OF COASTAL COMMUNITY ON BIODIVERSITY CONSERVATION (Case Study of Bajau Coastal Communities, Gorontalo

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ramli Utina

    2017-04-01

    Full Text Available Human behavior is a part of the ecological system, therefore overcoming the ecological crisis and living resources need to explore human traditions, way of life and human behavior toward natural resources. Understanding and translation of human harmonious relationship with all elements along with other living beings is a form of human ecological intelligence. The objective of this study was to describe the traditions and coastal communities behavior that contains the value of ecological intelligence in coastal biodiversity conservation. The study was based on observation, focus group discussion and identification of Bajau coastal community tradition in their lives and livelihoods on fishing, as well as the behavior toward biological resources. Bajau coastal communities settled in three villages in Pohuwato regency, Gorontalo. There are two themes that contains the value of ecological intelligence of  Bajau communities in the conservation of biodiversity, namely; mamia kadialo in tradition of fishing, and fishing behavior. The prohibition in the tradition of mamia kadialo contains the value of conservation of biodiversity. Usage of simple equipment on fishing activities provide a positive ecological consequences for the conservation of coastal biodiversity.

  10. Targeted conservation to safeguard a biodiversity hotspot from climate and land-cover change.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Struebig, Matthew J; Wilting, Andreas; Gaveau, David L A; Meijaard, Erik; Smith, Robert J; Fischer, Manuela; Metcalfe, Kristian; Kramer-Schadt, Stephanie

    2015-02-02

    Responses of biodiversity to changes in both land cover and climate are recognized [1] but still poorly understood [2]. This poses significant challenges for spatial planning as species could shift, contract, expand, or maintain their range inside or outside protected areas [2-4]. We examine this problem in Borneo, a global biodiversity hotspot [5], using spatial prioritization analyses that maximize species conservation under multiple environmental-change forecasts. Climate projections indicate that 11%-36% of Bornean mammal species will lose ≥ 30% of their habitat by 2080, and suitable ecological conditions will shift upslope for 23%-46%. Deforestation exacerbates this process, increasing the proportion of species facing comparable habitat loss to 30%-49%, a 2-fold increase on historical trends. Accommodating these distributional changes will require conserving land outside existing protected areas, but this may be less than anticipated from models incorporating deforestation alone because some species will colonize high-elevation reserves. Our results demonstrate the increasing importance of upland reserves and that relatively small additions (16,000-28,000 km(2)) to the current conservation estate could provide substantial benefits to biodiversity facing changes to land cover and climate. On Borneo, much of this land is under forestry jurisdiction, warranting targeted conservation partnerships to safeguard biodiversity in an era of global change. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  11. The ecosystem approach to fisheries: management at the dynamic interface between biodiversity conservation and sustainable use.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jennings, Simon; Smith, Anthony D M; Fulton, Elizabeth A; Smith, David C

    2014-08-01

    The emergence of an ecosystem approach to fisheries (EAF) was characterized by the adoption of objectives for maintaining ecosystem health alongside those for fisheries. The EAF was expected to meet some aspirations for biodiversity conservation, but health was principally linked to sustainable use rather than lower levels of human impact. Consequently, while policies including EAF concepts identified objectives for fisheries management and biodiversity conservation, the wording often reflected unresolved societal and political debates about objectives and gave imprecise guidance on addressing inevitable trade-offs. Despite scientific progress in making trade-offs and consequences explicit, there remain substantial differences in interpretations of acceptable impact, responses to uncertainty and risk, and the use of management measures by groups accountable for fisheries management and biodiversity conservation. Within and among nations and regions, these differences are influenced by the contribution of fisheries, aquaculture, farming, and trade to food security, consumers' options, and other social, economic, and environmental factors. Notwithstanding, mutual understanding of the motivations and norms of fisheries management and biodiversity conservation groups is increasing, and interactions between these groups have likely supported more progress toward meeting their stated objectives than would have otherwise been achievable. © 2014 New York Academy of Sciences.

  12. Biodiversity conservation—a place holder: introduction to papers in this issue.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deanna H. Olson

    2006-01-01

    Biodiversity conservation in the US Pacific Northwest is gaining new attention as large reserves are recognized as not being a panacea for protection of all rare species. In February 2005, a workshop at Oregon State University, held in conjunction with the joint annual meetings of the Society for Northwestern Vertebrate Biology and the Oregon Chapter of the Wildlife...

  13. Payments for ecosystem services and the financing of global biodiversity conservation

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hein, L.G.; Miller, D.C.; Groot, de R.S.

    2013-01-01

    It is generally recognized that addressing the ongoing loss of global biodiversity requires a substantial increase in funding for conservation activities, particularly in developing countries. An increasing interest in Payment Mechanisms for Ecosystem Services (PES) begs the question of whether a

  14. Protecting important sites for biodiversity contributes to meeting global conservation targets

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Butchart, Stuart H. M.; Scharlemann, Jörn P.W.; Evans, Mike I.

    2012-01-01

    Protected areas (PAs) are a cornerstone of conservation efforts and now cover nearly 13% of the world's land surface, with the world's governments committed to expand this to 17%. However, as biodiversity continues to decline, the effectiveness of PAs in reducing the extinction risk of species re...

  15. Developing Financial Mechanisms for Long-Term Funding of Biodiversity Conservation

    OpenAIRE

    Jeri Larsen

    1993-01-01

    On March 12, 1992, the Regional Environment Divisions and the Global Environment Facility Administration in the Environment Department sponsored a one-day workshop. Conservation professionals, financial and legal specialists, and Bank operational staff involved with biodiversity, particularly Global Environment Facility (GEF) projects, gathered to discuss trust funds, endowments, and found...

  16. Climate change, sea-level rise, and conservation: keeping island biodiversity afloat.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Courchamp, Franck; Hoffmann, Benjamin D; Russell, James C; Leclerc, Camille; Bellard, Céline

    2014-03-01

    Island conservation programs have been spectacularly successful over the past five decades, yet they generally do not account for impacts of climate change. Here, we argue that the full spectrum of climate change, especially sea-level rise and loss of suitable climatic conditions, should be rapidly integrated into island biodiversity research and management. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  17. How Biodiversity Conservation Policy Accelerates Agrarian Differentiation: The Account of an Upland Village in Vietnam

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Dressler, W.H.; Xuan To, P.; Mahanty, S.

    2013-01-01

    This paper shows how the implementation of Vietnam«SQ»s recent biodiversity conservation policy in Ba Vi National Park has increased the economic value of nature, created sustained conflict, and exacerbated agrarian differentiation in an upland village in northern Vietnam. Increased global and

  18. Biodiversity gains from efficient use of private sponsorship for flagship species conservation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bennett, Joseph R; Maloney, Richard; Possingham, Hugh P

    2015-04-22

    To address the global extinction crisis, both efficient use of existing conservation funding and new sources of funding are vital. Private sponsorship of charismatic 'flagship' species conservation represents an important source of new funding, but has been criticized as being inefficient. However, the ancillary benefits of privately sponsored flagship species conservation via actions benefiting other species have not been quantified, nor have the benefits of incorporating such sponsorship into objective prioritization protocols. Here, we use a comprehensive dataset of conservation actions for the 700 most threatened species in New Zealand to examine the potential biodiversity gains from national private flagship species sponsorship programmes. We find that private funding for flagship species can clearly result in additional species and phylogenetic diversity conserved, via conservation actions shared with other species. When private flagship species funding is incorporated into a prioritization protocol to preferentially sponsor shared actions, expected gains can be more than doubled. However, these gains are consistently smaller than expected gains in a hypothetical scenario where private funding could be optimally allocated among all threatened species. We recommend integrating private sponsorship of flagship species into objective prioritization protocols to sponsor efficient actions that maximize biodiversity gains, or wherever possible, encouraging private donations for broader biodiversity goals. © 2015 The Author(s) Published by the Royal Society. All rights reserved.

  19. Can rice field channels contribute to biodiversity conservation in Southern Brazilian wetlands?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maltchik, Leonardo; Rolon, Ana Silvia; Stenert, Cristina; Machado, Iberê Farina; Rocha, Odete

    2011-12-01

    Conservation of species in agroecosystems has attracted attention. Irrigation channels can improve habitats and offer conditions for freshwater species conservation. Two questions from biodiversity conservation point of view are: 1) Can the irrigated channels maintain a rich diversity of macrophytes, macroinvertebrates and amphibians over the cultivation cycle? 2) Do richness, abundance and composition of aquatic species change over the rice cultivation cycle? For this, a set of four rice field channels was randomly selected in Southern Brazilian wetlands. In each channel, six sample collection events were carried out over the rice cultivation cycle (June 2005 to June 2006). A total of 160 taxa were identified in irrigated channels, including 59 macrophyte species, 91 taxa of macroinvertebrate and 10 amphibian species. The richness and abundance of macrophytes, macroinvertebrates and amphibians did not change significantly over the rice cultivation cycle. However, the species composition of these groups in the irrigation channels varied between uncultivated and cultivated periods. Our results showed that the species diversity found in the irrigation channels, together with the permanence of water enables these man-made aquatic networks to function as important systems that can contribute to the conservation of biodiversity in regions where the wetlands were converted into rice fields. The conservation of the species in agriculture, such as rice field channels, may be an important alternative for biodiversity conservation in Southern Brazil, where more than 90% of wetland systems have already been lost and the remaining ones are still at high risk due to the expansion of rice production.

  20. Risk assessment for biodiversity conservation planning in Pacific Northwest forests

    Science.gov (United States)

    Becky K. Kerns; Alan Ager

    2007-01-01

    Risk assessment can provide a robust strategy for landscape-scale planning challenges associated with species conservation and habitat protection in Pacific Northwest forests. We provide an overview of quantitative and probabilistic ecological risk assessment with focus on the application of approaches and influences from the actuarial, financial, and technical...

  1. Catchments as conservation units for riverine biodiversity | Wishart ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The geological structure and longitudinal nature of river systems provide a possible barrier to the dispersal of lotic organisms. This has the potential to drive evolutionary processes such as genetic differentiation and subsequent allopatric speciation. In the conservation of lotic ecosystems population and evolutionary ...

  2. Using in situ management to conserve biodiversity under climate change.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Greenwood, Owen; Mossman, Hannah L; Suggitt, Andrew J; Curtis, Robin J; Maclean, Ilya M D

    2016-06-01

    Successful conservation will increasingly depend on our ability to help species cope with climate change. While there has been much attention on accommodating or assisting range shifts, less has been given to the alternative strategy of helping species survive climate change through in situ management.Here we provide a synthesis of published evidence examining whether habitat management can be used to offset the adverse impacts on biodiversity of changes in temperature, water availability and sea-level rise. Our focus is on practical methods whereby the local environmental conditions experienced by organisms can be made more suitable.Many studies suggest that manipulating vegetation structure can alter the temperature and moisture conditions experienced by organisms, and several demonstrate that these altered conditions benefit species as regional climatic conditions become unsuitable. The effects of topography on local climatic conditions are even better understood, but the alteration of topography as a climate adaptation tool is not ingrained in conservation practice. Trials of topographic alteration in the field should therefore be a priority for future research.Coastal systems have the natural capacity to keep pace with climate change, but require sufficient sediment supplies and space for landward migration to do so. There is an extensive literature on managed realignment. While the underlying rationale is simple, successful implementation requires careful consideration of elevation and past land use. Even with careful management, restored habitats may not attain the physical and biological attributes of natural habitats. Synthesis and applications . The recent literature provides a compelling case that some of the adverse effects of climate change can be offset by appropriate management. However, much of the evidence for this is indirect and too few studies provide empirical tests of the long-term effectiveness of these management interventions. It is clear

  3. Local participation in biodiversity conservation initiatives: a comparative analysis of different models in South East Mexico.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Méndez-López, María Elena; García-Frapolli, Eduardo; Pritchard, Diana J; Sánchez González, María Consuelo; Ruiz-Mallén, Isabel; Porter-Bolland, Luciana; Reyes-Garcia, Victoria

    2014-12-01

    In Mexico, biodiversity conservation is primarily implemented through three schemes: 1) protected areas, 2) payment-based schemes for environmental services, and 3) community-based conservation, officially recognized in some cases as Indigenous and Community Conserved Areas. In this paper we compare levels of local participation across conservation schemes. Through a survey applied to 670 households across six communities in Southeast Mexico, we document local participation during the creation, design, and implementation of the management plan of different conservation schemes. To analyze the data, we first calculated the frequency of participation at the three different stages mentioned, then created a participation index that characterizes the presence and relative intensity of local participation for each conservation scheme. Results showed that there is a low level of local participation across all the conservation schemes explored in this study. Nonetheless, the payment for environmental services had the highest local participation while the protected areas had the least. Our findings suggest that local participation in biodiversity conservation schemes is not a predictable outcome of a specific (community-based) model, thus implying that other factors might be important in determining local participation. This has implications on future strategies that seek to encourage local involvement in conservation. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  4. Conservation of soil organic carbon, biodiversity and the provision of other ecosystem services along climatic gradients in West Africa

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    E. Marks

    2009-08-01

    Full Text Available Terrestrial carbon resources are major drivers of development in West Africa. The distribution of these resources co-varies with ecosystem type and rainfall along a strong Northeast-Southwest climatic gradient. Soil organic carbon, a strong indicator of soil quality, has been severely depleted in some areas by human activities, which leads to issues of soil erosion and desertification, but this trend can be altered with appropriate management. There is significant potential to enhance existing soil carbon stores in West Africa, with benefits at the global and local scale, for atmospheric CO2 mitigation as well as supporting and provisioning ecosystem services. Three key factors impacting carbon stocks are addressed in this review: climate, biotic factors, and human activities. Climate risks must be considered in a framework of global change, especially in West Africa, where landscape managers have few resources available to adapt to climatic perturbations. Among biotic factors, biodiversity conservation paired with carbon conservation may provide a pathway to sustainable development, and biodiversity conservation is also a global priority with local benefits for ecosystem resilience, biomass productivity, and provisioning services such as foodstuffs. Finally, human management has largely been responsible for reduced carbon stocks, but this trend can be reversed through the implementation of appropriate carbon conservation strategies in the agricultural sector, as shown by multiple studies. Owing to the strong regional climatic gradient, country-level initiatives will need to consider carbon sequestration approaches for multiple ecosystem types. Given the diversity of environments, global policies must be adapted and strategies developed at the national or sub-national levels to improve carbon storage above and belowground. Initiatives of this sort must act locally at farmer scale, and focus on ecosystem services rather than on carbon

  5. Top priorities of Canadian and American policymakers for conservation science

    Science.gov (United States)

    We summarize the content of America's "top 40" conservation research questions and how they can inform policy and management needs that emerged from informal interviews with senior policymakers and other decision makers

  6. Limitations of habitats as biodiversity surrogates for conservation planning in estuaries.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shokri, Mohammad Reza; Gladstone, William

    2013-04-01

    Increasing pressures on global biodiversity and lack of data on the number and abundance of species have motivated conservation planners and researchers to use more readily available information as proxies or surrogates for biodiversity. "Habitat" is one of the most frequently used surrogates but its assumed value in marine conservation planning is not often tested. The present study developed and tested three alternative habitat classification schemes of increasing complexity for a large estuary in south-east Australia and tested their effectiveness in predicting spatial variation in macroinvertebrate biodiversity and selecting estuarine protected areas to represent species. The three habitat classification schemes were: (1) broad-scale habitats (e.g., mangroves and seagrass), (2) subdivision of each broad-scale habitat by a suite of environmental variables that varied significantly throughout the estuary, and (3) subdivision of each broad-scale habitat by the subset of environmental variables that best explained spatial variation in macroinvertebrate biodiversity. Macroinvertebrate assemblages differed significantly among the habitats in each classification scheme. For each classification scheme, habitat richness was significantly correlated with species richness, total density of macroinvertebrates, assemblage dissimilarity, and summed irreplaceability. However, in a reserve selection process designed to represent examples of each habitat, no habitat classification scheme represented species significantly better than a random selection of sites. Habitat classification schemes may represent variation in estuarine biodiversity; however, the results of this study suggest they are inefficient in designing representative networks of estuarine protected areas.

  7. Setting conservation priorities for migratory networks under uncertainty.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dhanjal-Adams, Kiran L; Klaassen, Marcel; Nicol, Sam; Possingham, Hugh P; Chadès, Iadine; Fuller, Richard A

    2017-06-01

    Conserving migratory species requires protecting connected habitat along the pathways they travel. Despite recent improvements in tracking animal movements, migratory connectivity remains poorly resolved at a population level for the vast majority of species, thus conservation prioritization is hampered. To address this data limitation, we developed a novel approach to spatial prioritization based on a model of potential connectivity derived from empirical data on species abundance and distance traveled between sites during migration. We applied the approach to migratory shorebirds of the East Asian-Australasian Flyway. Conservation strategies that prioritized sites based on connectivity and abundance metrics together maintained larger populations of birds than strategies that prioritized sites based only on abundance metrics. The conservation value of a site therefore depended on both its capacity to support migratory animals and its position within the migratory pathway; the loss of crucial sites led to partial or total population collapse. We suggest that conservation approaches that prioritize sites supporting large populations of migrants should, where possible, also include data on the spatial arrangement of sites. © 2016 Society for Conservation Biology.

  8. How to maximally support local and regional biodiversity in applied conservation? Insights from pond management.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lemmens, Pieter; Mergeay, Joachim; De Bie, Tom; Van Wichelen, Jeroen; De Meester, Luc; Declerck, Steven A J

    2013-01-01

    Biodiversity and nature values in anthropogenic landscapes often depend on land use practices and management. Evaluations of the association between management and biodiversity remain, however, comparatively scarce, especially in aquatic systems. Furthermore, studies also tend to focus on a limited set of organism groups at the local scale, whereas a multi-group approach at the landscape scale is to be preferred. This study aims to investigate the effect of pond management on the diversity of multiple aquatic organism groups (e.g. phytoplankton, zooplankton, several groups of macro-invertebrates, submerged and emergent macrophytes) at local and regional spatial scales. For this purpose, we performed a field study of 39 shallow man-made ponds representing five different management types. Our results indicate that fish stock management and periodic pond drainage are crucial drivers of pond biodiversity. Furthermore, this study provides insight in how the management of eutrophied ponds can contribute to aquatic biodiversity. A combination of regular draining of ponds with efforts to keep ponds free of fish seems to be highly beneficial for the biodiversity of many groups of aquatic organisms at local and regional scales. Regular draining combined with a stocking of fish at low biomass is also preferable to infrequent draining and lack of fish stock control. These insights are essential for the development of conservation programs that aim long-term maintenance of regional biodiversity in pond areas across Europe.

  9. Conservation planning for biodiversity and wilderness: a real-world example.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ceauşu, Silvia; Gomes, Inês; Pereira, Henrique Miguel

    2015-05-01

    Several of the most important conservation prioritization approaches select markedly different areas at global and regional scales. They are designed to maximize a certain biodiversity dimension such as coverage of species in the case of hotspots and complementarity, or composite properties of ecosystems in the case of wilderness. Most comparisons between approaches have ignored the multidimensionality of biodiversity. We analyze here the results of two species-based methodologies-hotspots and complementarity-and an ecosystem-based methodology-wilderness-at local scale. As zoning of protected areas can increase the effectiveness of conservation, we use the data employed for the management plan of the Peneda-Gerês National Park in Portugal. We compare the approaches against four criteria: species representativeness, wilderness coverage, coverage of important areas for megafauna, and for regulating ecosystem services. Our results suggest that species- and ecosystem-based approaches select significantly different areas at local scale. Our results also show that no approach covers well all biodiversity dimensions. Species-based approaches cover species distribution better, while the ecosystem-based approach favors wilderness, areas important for megafauna, and for ecosystem services. Management actions addressing different dimensions of biodiversity have a potential for contradictory effects, social conflict, and ecosystem services trade-offs, especially in the context of current European biodiversity policies. However, biodiversity is multidimensional, and management and zoning at local level should reflect this aspect. The consideration of both species- and ecosystem-based approaches at local scale is necessary to achieve a wider range of conservation goals.

  10. Identifying national freshwater ecosystem priority areas

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Nel, JL

    2012-10-01

    Full Text Available This presentation highlights the use of systematic conservation planning to identify priority areas for managing the health of freshwater ecosystems and their associated biodiversity and ecosystem services....

  11. Energy Efficiency of a Greenhouse for the Conservation of Forestry Biodiversity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alvaro Marucci

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Forest biodiversity conservation is one of the most interesting and crucial problems in forestry world. Currently, the conservation methods are based on two phases: the conservation of seeds at low temperatures and the multiplication of vegetable material. This latter operation can be successfully developed in properly designed greenhouses. The aim of this paper is to define a type of greenhouse which is particularly suitable for plant material propagation in order to preserve forest biodiversity in the area of the Central Italy. Some general parameters were first defined for a correct planning of the structure, such as: the shape of the section, volume, cover material, systems for heating and cooling, and those for the control of the internal microclimate parameters (light, air temperature, and relative humidity. Considering the construction characteristics and the climatic conditions of the place, the internal microclimatic conditions have been later determined by the useful implementation in TRNSYS in order to analyse the energy efficiency of the greenhouse.

  12. Global priorities for conservation of threatened species, carbon storage, and freshwater services

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Larsen, Frank Wugt; Londoño-Murcia, Maria C.; Turner, Will R.

    2011-01-01

    The potential of global biodiversity conservation efforts to also deliver critical benefits, such as carbon storage and freshwater services, is still unclear. Using spatially explicit data on 3,500 range-restricted threatened species, carbon storage, and freshwater provision to people, we conducted...... for which spatial planning and appropriate conservation mechanisms (e.g., payments for ecosystem services) can be used to realize synergies and mitigate tradeoffs....

  13. Coordinating for Arctic Conservation: Implementing Integrated Arctic Biodiversity Monitoring, Data Management and Reporting

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gill, M.; Svoboda, M.

    2012-12-01

    Arctic ecosystems and the biodiversity they support are experiencing growing pressure from various stressors (e.g. development, climate change, contaminants, etc.) while established research and monitoring programs remain largely uncoordinated, lacking the ability to effectively monitor, understand and report on biodiversity trends at the circumpolar scale. The maintenance of healthy arctic ecosystems is a global imperative as the Arctic plays a critical role in the Earth's physical, chemical and biological balance. A coordinated and comprehensive effort for monitoring arctic ecosystems is needed to facilitate effective and timely conservation and adaptation actions. The Arctic's size and complexity represents a significant challenge towards detecting and attributing important biodiversity trends. This demands a scaled, pan-arctic, ecosystem-based approach that not only identifies trends in biodiversity, but also identifies underlying causes. It is critical that this information be made available to generate effective strategies for adapting to changes now taking place in the Arctic—a process that ultimately depends on rigorous, integrated, and efficient monitoring programs that have the power to detect change within a "management" time frame. To meet these challenges and in response to the Arctic Climate Impact Assessment's recommendation to expand and enhance arctic biodiversity monitoring, the Conservation of Arctic Flora and Fauna (CAFF) Working Group of the Arctic Council launched the Circumpolar Biodiversity Monitoring Program (CBMP). The CBMP is led by Environment Canada on behalf of Canada and the Arctic Council. The CBMP is working with over 60 global partners to expand, integrate and enhance existing arctic biodiversity research and monitoring efforts to facilitate more rapid detection, communication and response to significant trends and pressures. Towards this end, the CBMP has established three Expert Monitoring Groups representing major Arctic

  14. The importance of conserving biodiversity outside of protected areas in mediterranean ecosystems.

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    Robin L Cox

    Full Text Available Mediterranean-type ecosystems constitute one of the rarest terrestrial biomes and yet they are extraordinarily biodiverse. Home to over 250 million people, the five regions where these ecosystems are found have climate and coastal conditions that make them highly desirable human habitats. The current conservation landscape does not reflect the mediterranean biome's rarity and its importance for plant endemism. Habitat conversion will clearly outpace expansion of formal protected-area networks, and conservationists must augment this traditional strategy with new approaches to sustain the mediterranean biota. Using regional scale datasets, we determine the area of land in each of the five regions that is protected, converted (e.g., to urban or industrial, impacted (e.g., intensive, cultivated agriculture, or lands that we consider to have conservation potential. The latter are natural and semi-natural lands that are unprotected (e.g., private range lands but sustain numerous native species and associated habitats. Chile has the greatest proportion of its land (75% in this category and California-Mexico the least (48%. To illustrate the potential for achieving mediterranean biodiversity conservation on these lands, we use species-area curves generated from ecoregion scale data on native plant species richness and vertebrate species richness. For example, if biodiversity could be sustained on even 25% of existing unprotected, natural and semi-natural lands, we estimate that the habitat of more than 6,000 species could be represented. This analysis suggests that if unprotected natural and semi-natural lands are managed in a manner that allows for persistence of native species, we can realize significant additional biodiversity gains. Lasting biodiversity protection at the scale needed requires unprecedented collaboration among stakeholders to promote conservation both inside and outside of traditional protected areas, including on lands where people

  15. The Importance of Rotational Crops for Biodiversity Conservation in Mediterranean Areas.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chiatante, Gianpasquale; Meriggi, Alberto

    2016-01-01

    Nowadays we are seeing the largest biodiversity loss since the extinction of the dinosaurs. To conserve biodiversity it is essential to plan protected areas using a prioritization approach, which takes into account the current biodiversity value of the sites. Considering that in the Mediterranean Basin the agro-ecosystems are one of the most important parts of the landscape, the conservation of crops is essential to biodiversity conservation. In the framework of agro-ecosystem conservation, farmland birds play an important role because of their representativeness, and because of their steady decline in the last Century in Western Europe. The main aim of this research was to define if crop dominated landscapes could be useful for biodiversity conservation in a Mediterranean area in which the landscape was modified by humans in the last thousand years and was affected by the important biogeographical phenomenon of peninsula effect. To assess this, we identify the hotspots and the coldspots of bird diversity in southern Italy both during the winter and in the breeding season. In particular we used a scoring method, defining a biodiversity value for each cell of a 1-km grid superimposed on the study area, using data collected by fieldwork following a stratified random sampling design. This value was analysed by a multiple linear regression analysis and was predicted in the whole study area. Then we defined the hotspots and the coldspots of the study area as 15% of the cells with higher and lower value of biodiversity, respectively. Finally, we used GAP analysis to compare hotspot distribution with the current network of protected areas. This study showed that the winter hotspots of bird diversity were associated with marshes and water bodies, shrublands, and irrigated crops, whilst the breeding hotspots were associated with more natural areas (e.g. transitional wood/shrubs), such as open areas (natural grasslands, pastures and not irrigated crops). Moreover, the

  16. The Importance of Rotational Crops for Biodiversity Conservation in Mediterranean Areas.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gianpasquale Chiatante

    Full Text Available Nowadays we are seeing the largest biodiversity loss since the extinction of the dinosaurs. To conserve biodiversity it is essential to plan protected areas using a prioritization approach, which takes into account the current biodiversity value of the sites. Considering that in the Mediterranean Basin the agro-ecosystems are one of the most important parts of the landscape, the conservation of crops is essential to biodiversity conservation. In the framework of agro-ecosystem conservation, farmland birds play an important role because of their representativeness, and because of their steady decline in the last Century in Western Europe. The main aim of this research was to define if crop dominated landscapes could be useful for biodiversity conservation in a Mediterranean area in which the landscape was modified by humans in the last thousand years and was affected by the important biogeographical phenomenon of peninsula effect. To assess this, we identify the hotspots and the coldspots of bird diversity in southern Italy both during the winter and in the breeding season. In particular we used a scoring method, defining a biodiversity value for each cell of a 1-km grid superimposed on the study area, using data collected by fieldwork following a stratified random sampling design. This value was analysed by a multiple linear regression analysis and was predicted in the whole study area. Then we defined the hotspots and the coldspots of the study area as 15% of the cells with higher and lower value of biodiversity, respectively. Finally, we used GAP analysis to compare hotspot distribution with the current network of protected areas. This study showed that the winter hotspots of bird diversity were associated with marshes and water bodies, shrublands, and irrigated crops, whilst the breeding hotspots were associated with more natural areas (e.g. transitional wood/shrubs, such as open areas (natural grasslands, pastures and not irrigated crops

  17. Terrestrial Birds and Conservation Priorities in Baja California Peninsula

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ricardo Rodriguez-Estrella

    2005-01-01

    The Baja California peninsula has been categorized as an Endemic Bird Area of the world and it is an important wintering area for a number of aquatic, wading and migratory landbird species. It is an important area for conservation of bird diversity in northwestern México. In spite of this importance, only few, scattered studies have been done on the ecology...

  18. South-South exchanges enhance resource management and biodiversity conservation at various scales

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    William D Heyman

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available International conservation organisations have invested considerable resources in fostering biodiversity conservation programs in the humid tropics, the most biologically diverse areas on earth. Recent approaches to conservation have centered on integrated conservation and development projects and participatory resource management programs, co-managed between governments and local communities. But these programs have had only mixed success and often suffer from insufficient quantity or quality of participation by local communities. We pose that participatory resource management is more likely to succeed when community members, 1 gain a global perspective on how their social, economic and environmental conditions compare with peer communities in other similar areas of the world, and thus better understand issues of relative scarcity and the benefits of sustainable resource management, and 2 engage as decision-makers at every stage of the conservation process up to reflective program evaluation. This paper examines the role of South-South exchanges as a tool to achieve these intermediate goals that ultimately foster more effective and participatory conservation and support sustainable local livelihoods. The data are extracted from the initiatives of the authors in two different environments- marine and coastal communities in Central America and the Caribbean, and lowland rainforest communities in the western Amazon of South America. We conclude that the exchanges are effective ways to build stakeholder comprehension about, and meaningful engagement in, resource management. South-South exchanges may also help build multi-local coalitions from various remote areas that together support biodiversity conservation at regional and global scales.

  19. Biodiversity, Life History, and Conservation of Northeastern Pacific Chondrichthyans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ebert, David A; Bigman, Jennifer S; Lawson, Julia M

    The sharks, batoids, and chimaeras, collectively the class Chondrichthyes, are one of the most successful groups of fishes, with over 1250 species globally. Recent taxonomic revisions have increased their diversity by about 20% over the past 17 years (2000-2016). The Northeast Pacific Ocean is one of the top 20 most diverse regions/countries on the globe with 77 chondrichthyan species, a number less than a quarter that of the most species-rich area (Australia) but that has increased by 10% since 2000 to include three new species (two skates and a chimaera). In this chapter we discuss the species richness of chondrichthyans occurring in the Northeast Pacific Ocean, characterize their life histories, briefly review several fisheries, and summarize the conservation status of those chondrichthyans occurring in the region. Detailed descriptions and evaluations of fisheries can be found in Chapter 7 of AMB Volume 78. © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  20. Birds as biodiversity surrogates

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Larsen, Frank Wugt; Bladt, Jesper Stentoft; Balmford, Andrew

    2012-01-01

    1. Most biodiversity is still unknown, and therefore, priority areas for conservation typically are identified based on the presence of surrogates, or indicator groups. Birds are commonly used as surrogates of biodiversity owing to the wide availability of relevant data and their broad popular...... and applications.?Good surrogates of biodiversity are necessary to help identify conservation areas that will be effective in preventing species extinctions. Birds perform fairly well as surrogates in cases where birds are relatively speciose, but overall effectiveness will be improved by adding additional data...... from other taxa, in particular from range-restricted species. Conservation solutions with focus on birds as biodiversity surrogate could therefore benefit from also incorporating species data from other taxa....

  1. [Application of biotope mapping model integrated with vegetation cover continuity attributes in urban biodiversity conservation].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gao, Tian; Qiu, Ling; Chen, Cun-gen

    2010-09-01

    Based on the biotope classification system with vegetation structure as the framework, a modified biotope mapping model integrated with vegetation cover continuity attributes was developed, and applied to the study of the greenbelts in Helsingborg in southern Sweden. An evaluation of the vegetation cover continuity in the greenbelts was carried out by the comparisons of the vascular plant species richness in long- and short-continuity forests, based on the identification of woodland continuity by using ancient woodland indicator species (AWIS). In the test greenbelts, long-continuity woodlands had more AWIS. Among the forests where the dominant trees were more than 30-year-old, the long-continuity ones had a higher biodiversity of vascular plants, compared with the short-continuity ones with the similar vegetation structure. The modified biotope mapping model integrated with the continuity features of vegetation cover could be an important tool in investigating urban biodiversity, and provide corresponding strategies for future urban biodiversity conservation.

  2. Food sovereignty: an alternative paradigm for poverty reduction and biodiversity conservation in Latin America

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chappell, M Jahi

    2013-01-01

    Strong feedback between global biodiversity loss and persistent, extreme rural poverty are major challenges in the face of concurrent food, energy, and environmental crises. This paper examines the role of industrial agricultural intensification and market integration as exogenous socio-ecological drivers of biodiversity loss and poverty traps in Latin America. We then analyze the potential of a food sovereignty framework, based on protecting the viability of a diverse agroecological matrix while supporting rural livelihoods and global food production. We review several successful examples of this approach, including ecological land reform in Brazil, agroforestry, milpa, and the uses of wild varieties in smallholder systems in Mexico and Central America. We highlight emergent research directions that will be necessary to assess the potential of the food sovereignty model to promote both biodiversity conservation and poverty reduction. PMID:24555109

  3. Food sovereignty: an alternative paradigm for poverty reduction and biodiversity conservation in Latin America.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chappell, M Jahi; Wittman, Hannah; Bacon, Christopher M; Ferguson, Bruce G; Barrios, Luis García; Barrios, Raúl García; Jaffee, Daniel; Lima, Jefferson; Méndez, V Ernesto; Morales, Helda; Soto-Pinto, Lorena; Vandermeer, John; Perfecto, Ivette

    2013-01-01

    Strong feedback between global biodiversity loss and persistent, extreme rural poverty are major challenges in the face of concurrent food, energy, and environmental crises. This paper examines the role of industrial agricultural intensification and market integration as exogenous socio-ecological drivers of biodiversity loss and poverty traps in Latin America. We then analyze the potential of a food sovereignty framework, based on protecting the viability of a diverse agroecological matrix while supporting rural livelihoods and global food production. We review several successful examples of this approach, including ecological land reform in Brazil, agroforestry, milpa, and the uses of wild varieties in smallholder systems in Mexico and Central America. We highlight emergent research directions that will be necessary to assess the potential of the food sovereignty model to promote both biodiversity conservation and poverty reduction.

  4. Factors Affecting the Success of Conserving Biodiversity in National Parks: A Review of Case Studies from Africa

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Moses Muhumuza

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available National Parks are a cornerstone for biodiversity conservation in Africa. Two approaches are commonly used to sustain biodiversity in National Parks. Past and current studies show that both approaches are generally ineffective in conserving biodiversity in National Parks in Africa. However, there are a handful of cases where these approaches have been successful at conserving biodiversity in National Parks. The question this paper attempts to answer is why in some cases these approaches have been successful and in other cases they have failed. A metadata analysis of 123 documents on case studies about conservation of biodiversity in National Parks in Africa was conducted. A series of search engines were used to find papers for review. Results showed that all factors responsible for both the success and failure of conserving biodiversity in National Parks in various contexts were socioeconomic and cultural in nature. The highest percentage in both successful case studies (66% and unsuccessful cases studies (55% was associated with the creation and management of the park. These results suggest that future conservation approaches in National Parks in Africa should place more emphasis on the human dimension of biodiversity conservation than purely scientific studies of species and habitats in National Parks.

  5. Priority areas for large mammal conservation in Equatorial Guinea.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Murai, Mizuki; Ruffler, Heidi; Berlemont, Antoine; Campbell, Genevieve; Esono, Fidel; Agbor, Anthony; Mbomio, Domingo; Ebana, Agustín; Nze, Antonio; Kühl, Hjalmar S

    2013-01-01

    Hunting is one of the main driving forces behind large mammal density distribution in many regions of the world. In tropical Africa, urban demand for bushmeat has been shown to dominate over subsistence hunting and its impact often overrides spatial-ecological species characteristics. To effectively protect remaining mammal populations the main factors that influence their distribution need to be integrated into conservation area prioritisation and management plans. This information has been lacking for Río Muni, Equatorial Guinea, as prior studies have been outdated or have not systematically covered the continental region of the country. In this study we evaluated: 1) the relative importance of local vs. commercial hunting; 2) wildlife density of protected vs. non-protected areas; and 3) the importance of ecological factors vs. human influence in driving mammal density distribution in Río Muni. We adopted a systematic countrywide line transect approach with particular focus on apes and elephants, but also including other mammal species. For analysis of field data we used generalised linear models with a set of predictor variables representing ecological conditions, anthropogenic pressure and protected areas. We estimate that there are currently 884 (437-1,789) elephants and 11,097 (8,719-13,592) chimpanzees and gorillas remaining in Río Muni. The results indicate strong hunting pressures on both local and commercial levels, with roads demonstrating a negative impact on elephants and overall mammal body mass. Protected areas played no role in determining any of the mammal species distributions and significant human hunting signs were found inside these protected areas, illustrating the lack of environmental law enforcement throughout the country. Río Muni is currently under-represented in conservation efforts in Western Equatorial Africa, and we recommend a focus on cross-boundary conservation, in particular in the Monte Alén-Monts de Cristal and Río Campo

  6. Conservation priorities for endangered Indian tigers through a genomic lens.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Natesh, Meghana; Atla, Goutham; Nigam, Parag; Jhala, Yadvendradev V; Zachariah, Arun; Borthakur, Udayan; Ramakrishnan, Uma

    2017-08-29

    Tigers have lost 93% of their historical range worldwide. India plays a vital role in the conservation of tigers since nearly 60% of all wild tigers are currently found here. However, as protected areas are small (<300 km 2 on average), with only a few individuals in each, many of them may not be independently viable. It is thus important to identify and conserve genetically connected populations, as well as to maintain connectivity within them. We collected samples from wild tigers (Panthera tigris tigris) across India and used genome-wide SNPs to infer genetic connectivity. We genotyped 10,184 SNPs from 38 individuals across 17 protected areas and identified three genetically distinct clusters (corresponding to northwest, southern and central India). The northwest cluster was isolated with low variation and high relatedness. The geographically large central cluster included tigers from central, northeastern and northern India, and had the highest variation. Most genetic diversity (62%) was shared among clusters, while unique variation was highest in the central cluster (8.5%) and lowest in the northwestern one (2%). We did not detect signatures of differential selection or local adaptation. We highlight that the northwest population requires conservation attention to ensure persistence of these tigers.

  7. Mammals on the EDGE: conservation priorities based on threat and phylogeny.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nick J B Isaac

    2007-03-01

    Full Text Available Conservation priority setting based on phylogenetic diversity has frequently been proposed but rarely implemented. Here, we define a simple index that measures the contribution made by different species to phylogenetic diversity and show how the index might contribute towards species-based conservation priorities. We describe procedures to control for missing species, incomplete phylogenetic resolution and uncertainty in node ages that make it possible to apply the method in poorly known clades. We also show that the index is independent of clade size in phylogenies of more than 100 species, indicating that scores from unrelated taxonomic groups are likely to be comparable. Similar scores are returned under two different species concepts, suggesting that the index is robust to taxonomic changes. The approach is applied to a near-complete species-level phylogeny of the Mammalia to generate a global priority list incorporating both phylogenetic diversity and extinction risk. The 100 highest-ranking species represent a high proportion of total mammalian diversity and include many species not usually recognised as conservation priorities. Many species that are both evolutionarily distinct and globally endangered (EDGE species do not benefit from existing conservation projects or protected areas. The results suggest that global conservation priorities may have to be reassessed in order to prevent a disproportionately large amount of mammalian evolutionary history becoming extinct in the near future.

  8. Priorities for improving the scientific foundation of conservation policy in North America.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Noss, Reed F; Fleishman, Erica; Dellasala, Dominick A; Fitzgerald, John M; Gross, Mart R; Main, Martin B; Nagle, Fiona; O'Malley, Stacey L; Rosales, Jon

    2009-08-01

    The Society for Conservation Biology (SCB) can enhance conservation of biodiversity in North America by increasing its engagement in public policy. Toward this end, the North America Section of SCB is establishing partnerships with other professional organizations in order to speak more powerfully to decision makers and taking other actions--such as increasing interaction with chapters--geared to engage members more substantively in science-policy issues. Additionally, the section is developing a North American Biodiversity Blueprint, which spans the continental United States and Canada and is informed by natural and social science. This blueprint is intended to clarify the policy challenges for protecting continental biodiversity, to foster bilateral collaboration to resolve common problems, and to suggest rational alternative policies and practices that are more likely than current practices to sustain North America's natural heritage. Conservation scientists and practitioners can play a key role by drawing policy makers' attention to ultimate, as well as proximate, causes of biodiversity decline and to the ecological and economic consequences of not addressing these threats.

  9. Two-dimensional gap analysis: a tool for efficient conservation planning and biodiversity policy implementation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Angelstam, Per; Mikusiński, Grzegorz; Rönnbäck, Britt-Inger; Ostman, Anders; Lazdinis, Marius; Roberge, Jean-Michel; Arnberg, Wolter; Olsson, Jan

    2003-12-01

    The maintenance of biodiversity by securing representative and well-connected habitat networks in managed landscapes requires a wise combination of protection, management, and restoration of habitats at several scales. We suggest that the integration of natural and social sciences in the form of "Two-dimensional gap analysis" is an efficient tool for the implementation of biodiversity policies. The tool links biologically relevant "horizontal" ecological issues with "vertical" issues related to institutions and other societal issues. Using forest biodiversity as an example, we illustrate how one can combine ecological and institutional aspects of biodiversity conservation, thus facilitating environmentally sustainable regional development. In particular, we use regional gap analysis for identification of focal forest types, habitat modelling for ascertaining the functional connectivity of "green infrastructures", as tools for the horizontal gap analysis. For the vertical dimension we suggest how the social sciences can be used for assessing the success in the implementation of biodiversity policies in real landscapes by identifying institutional obstacles while implementing policies. We argue that this interdisciplinary approach could be applied in a whole range of other environments including other terrestrial biota and aquatic ecosystems where functional habitat connectivity, nonlinear response to habitat loss and a multitude of economic and social interests co-occur in the same landscape.

  10. Plant biodiversity of beech forests in central-northern Italy: a methodological approach for conservation purposes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marcantonio M

    2012-07-01

    Full Text Available Forests are reckoned essentials as biodiversity reservoirs and carbon sinks. Current threats to forest ecosystems (e.g., climate changes, habitat loss and fragmentation, management changes call for monitoring their biodiversity and preserving their ecological functions. In this study, we characterized plants diversity of five beech forests located in central and north Apennines mountain chain, using results by a probabilistic sampling. In order to achieve our goals, we have considered species richness and abundance, taxonomic distinctness and species composition, using both old and new analytical approaches. Results have shown how: (1 the forest type dominated by Fagus sylvatica is characterized by high complexity, with marked compositional, structural and biodiversity differences; (2 beech forests of Pigelleto di Piancastagnaio and Valle della Corte show the highest plants diversity values. The ecological characteristics of these areas, which sustain high diversity values, are unique and of great conservation interest; (3 the use of species richness as the only diversity measure have not allowed an efficient differentiation between studied areas. Indeed, the use of different indexes and analytical methods is required to detect multiple characteristics of biological diversity, as well as to carry out efficient biodiversity surveys aimed to develop optimal conservation strategies. In the future, we plan to apply the sampling methodology and the analytical approach used in this paper to characterize plants diversity of similar forest types.

  11. Pyrenean meadows in Natura 2000 network: grass production and plant biodiversity conservation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Reine, R.; Barrantes, O.; Chocarro, C.; Juarez, A.; Broca, A.; Maestro, M.; Ferrer, C.

    2014-06-01

    In semi-natural mountain meadows, yield and forage quality must be reconciled with plant biodiversity conservation. This study was performed to analyze the relationships between these three parameters. To quantify plant biodiversity and pastoral value (PV), phyto sociological inventories were performed in 104 semi-natural meadows in the Central Spanish Pyrenees included in the Natura 2000 network. Forage yields were calculated and forage samples were analyzed for relative feed value (RFV). We identified two main types of meadows: (i) those that had more intensive management, relatively close to farm buildings, with little or no slope, dominated by grasses, with low plant biodiversity, high PV and yield, but low forage quality and (ii) those that had less intensive management, distant from farm buildings, on slopes, richer in other forbs, with high plant biodiversity and forage quality, but low PV and yield. Conservation policies should emphasize less intensive management practices to maintain plant diversity in the semi-natural meadows in the Pyrenees. The widespread view that other forbs have low nutritional value should be revised in future research. These species often are undervalued by the PV method, because their nutritional quality, digestibility and intake are poorly understood. (Author)

  12. Pyrenean meadows in Natura 2000 network: grass production and plant biodiversity conservation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ramón Reiné

    2014-02-01

    Full Text Available In semi-natural mountain meadows, yield and forage quality must be reconciled with plant biodiversity conservation. This study was performed to analyze the relationships between these three parameters. To quantify plant biodiversity and pastoral value (PV, phytosociological inventories were performed in 104 semi-natural meadows in the Central Spanish Pyrenees included in the Natura 2000 network. Forage yields were calculated and forage samples were analyzed for relative feed value (RFV. We identified two main types of meadows: (i those that had “more intensive management,” relatively close to farm buildings, with little or no slope, dominated by grasses, with low plant biodiversity, high PV and yield, but low forage quality and (ii those that had “less intensive management,” distant from farm buildings, on slopes, richer in “other forbs”, with high plant biodiversity and forage quality, but low PV and yield. Conservation policies should emphasize less intensive management practices to maintain plant diversity in the semi-natural meadows in the Pyrenees. The widespread view that “other forbs” have low nutritional value should be revised in future research. These species often are undervalued by the PV method, because their nutritional quality, digestibility and intake are poorly understood.

  13. Green Infrastructure Design Based on Spatial Conservation Prioritization and Modeling of Biodiversity Features and Ecosystem Services.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Snäll, Tord; Lehtomäki, Joona; Arponen, Anni; Elith, Jane; Moilanen, Atte

    2016-02-01

    There is high-level political support for the use of green infrastructure (GI) across Europe, to maintain viable populations and to provide ecosystem services (ES). Even though GI is inherently a spatial concept, the modern tools for spatial planning have not been recognized, such as in the recent European Environment Agency (EEA) report. We outline a toolbox of methods useful for GI design that explicitly accounts for biodiversity and ES. Data on species occurrence, habitats, and environmental variables are increasingly available via open-access internet platforms. Such data can be synthesized by statistical species distribution modeling, producing maps of biodiversity features. These, together with maps of ES, can form the basis for GI design. We argue that spatial conservation prioritization (SCP) methods are effective tools for GI design, as the overall SCP goal is cost-effective allocation of conservation efforts. Corridors are currently promoted by the EEA as the means for implementing GI design, but they typically target the needs of only a subset of the regional species pool. SCP methods would help to ensure that GI provides a balanced solution for the requirements of many biodiversity features (e.g., species, habitat types) and ES simultaneously in a cost-effective manner. Such tools are necessary to make GI into an operational concept for combating biodiversity loss and promoting ES.

  14. Conservation of geo- and -biodiversity in Lithuania: are there conflicts?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Skridlaite, Grazina; Motiejunaite, Jurga

    2014-05-01

    Lithuanian surface is sculptured by more than five glaciers, which retreated c. 10 000 years ago. After the ice sheets melted in Lithuania, Latvia and Poland, and other neighbouring countries, they left numerous erratic boulders and boulder fields. Hundreds of single boulders and boulder fields are declared as natural monuments in Lithuania and other countries and are variably protected. Tens of single boulders and boulder fields are included into the Geosites database at the Lithuanian Geological Survey. Rapid weather changes in Lithuania cause the weathering of erratic boulders. However, the fastest erosion is by overgrowing cryptogams: lichenized and non-lichenized fungi, algae, cyanobacteria and bryophytes. Lichens are among the first colonizers of rock surfaces, and their impact on stonework heritage is rather well documented. Hard rocks (e.g. granites) are weathering considerably slower than soft or relatively soft sandstones, dolomites or marbles; however serious impact is visible on stones with inscriptions, drawings and open surfaces of the protected nature monuments. Lichens gradually cover whole boulder surfaces obscuring their geological value and contributing to the surface weathering in Lithuania and neighbouring countries where numerous protected stony nature monuments occur. The 73 of the 723 species of lichenized and allied fungi in Lithuania are confined to hard acid rocks. Eight of these acid rock-dwelling species are included in the Lithuanian Red Data Book, some of them have high threat category or are thought to be extinct now. There is no conservation conflict between the red-listed saxicolous lichens and their substrate where the species are confined to wild boulder meadows. Here lichens and their boulder substrate suffer from excessive growth and overshadowing from surrounding vascular plants, also from pollution which change stone surface properties and induce encroachment of more aggressive species than the usual slow-growing acid rock

  15. Fish from the Southern Ocean: biodiversity, ecology and conservation challenges

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marino Vacchi

    2015-11-01

    Living and functioning at subzero temperatures implied important adaptations, including freezing avoidance by antifreeze glycoproteins ( AFGPs. Among the system-wide adaptive traits holding major ecological implications, the acquisition of secondary pelagicism in some species (plesiomorphically devoid of swim-bladder is a major. In those notothenioids, lipid deposition and reduced ossification allowed to achieve partial or full neutral buoyancy, and enabled expansion into semi-pelagic, pelagic, and cryopelagic habitats. Such an impressive ecological expansion has allowed several notothenioids to play a primary role in the Antarctic marine ecosystems. On the other side, their fine adaptation to the environment, might expose these fishes to risks that need to be properly considered and addressed. For instance, a relationship between the Antarctic silverfish (Pleuragramma antarctica, a key species in the coastal Antarctic ecosystem and the sea-ice, has recently been assessed, thus making this species potentially threatened by the ongoing climatic change, with implications for the whole ecosystem. In addition, some Antarctic fish, such as toothfishes (Dissostichus eleginoides and Dissostichus mawsoni are primary targets of industrial fish harvesting in the SO. To increase and update the scientific knowledge on these species is mandatory in order to improve the management of Antarctic marine resources, in response to the increasing international request of exploitation. This task is presently being conducted by CCAMLR (Commission for the Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources, along with fighting the illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU fishing and with the establishment of MPAs (Marine Protected Areas in various sectors of the Southern Ocean.

  16. A conceptual analysis of the application of tradable permits to biodiversity conservation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wissel, Silvia; Wätzold, Frank

    2010-04-01

    Tradable permits have been applied in many areas of environmental policy and may be a response to increasing calls for flexible conservation instruments that successfully conserve biodiversity while allowing for economic development. The idea behind applying tradable permits to conservation is that developers wishing to turn land to economic purposes, thereby destroying valuable habitat, may only do so if they submit a permit to the conservation agency showing that habitat of at least the equivalent ecological value is restored elsewhere. The developer himself does not need to carry out the restoration, but may buy a permit from a third party, thus allowing a market to emerge. Nevertheless, the application of tradable permits to biodiversity conservation is a complex issue because destroyed and restored habitats are likely to differ. There may be various trade-offs between the ecological requirements that destroyed and restored habitats be as similar as possible, and the need for a certain level of market activity to have a functioning trading system. The success of tradable permits as an instrument for reconciling the conflicts between economic development and conservation depends on the existence of certain economic, institutional, and ecological preconditions, for example, a functioning institutional framework, sufficient expert knowledge, and adequate monitoring and enforcement mechanisms.

  17. Environmental service payments: evaluating biodiversity conservation trade-offs and cost-efficiency in the Osa Conservation Area, Costa Rica.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barton, D N; Faith, D P; Rusch, G M; Acevedo, H; Paniagua, L; Castro, M

    2009-02-01

    The cost-efficiency of payments for environmental services (PES) to private landowners in the Osa Conservation Area, Costa Rica, is evaluated in terms of the trade-off between biodiversity representation and opportunity costs of conservation to agricultural and forestry land-use. Using available GIS data and an 'off-the-shelf' software application called TARGET, we find that the PES allocation criteria applied by authorities in 2002-2003 were more than twice as cost-efficient as criteria applied during 1999-2001. Results show that a policy relevant assessment of the cost-effectiveness of PES relative to other conservation policies can be carried out at regional level using available studies and GIS data. However, there are a number of data and conceptual limitations to using heuristic optimisation algorithms in the analysis of the cost-efficiency of PES. Site specific data on probabilities of land-use change, and a detailed specification of opportunity costs of farm land, labour and capital are required to use algorithms such as TARGET for ranking individual sites based on cost-efficiency. Despite its conceptual soundness for regional conservation analysis, biodiversity complementarity presents a practical challenge as a criterion for PES eligibility at farm level because it varies depending on the set of areas under PES contracts at any one time.

  18. Priority areas for large mammal conservation in Equatorial Guinea.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mizuki Murai

    Full Text Available Hunting is one of the main driving forces behind large mammal density distribution in many regions of the world. In tropical Africa, urban demand for bushmeat has been shown to dominate over subsistence hunting and its impact often overrides spatial-ecological species characteristics. To effectively protect remaining mammal populations the main factors that influence their distribution need to be integrated into conservation area prioritisation and management plans. This information has been lacking for Río Muni, Equatorial Guinea, as prior studies have been outdated or have not systematically covered the continental region of the country. In this study we evaluated: 1 the relative importance of local vs. commercial hunting; 2 wildlife density of protected vs. non-protected areas; and 3 the importance of ecological factors vs. human influence in driving mammal density distribution in Río Muni. We adopted a systematic countrywide line transect approach with particular focus on apes and elephants, but also including other mammal species. For analysis of field data we used generalised linear models with a set of predictor variables representing ecological conditions, anthropogenic pressure and protected areas. We estimate that there are currently 884 (437-1,789 elephants and 11,097 (8,719-13,592 chimpanzees and gorillas remaining in Río Muni. The results indicate strong hunting pressures on both local and commercial levels, with roads demonstrating a negative impact on elephants and overall mammal body mass. Protected areas played no role in determining any of the mammal species distributions and significant human hunting signs were found inside these protected areas, illustrating the lack of environmental law enforcement throughout the country. Río Muni is currently under-represented in conservation efforts in Western Equatorial Africa, and we recommend a focus on cross-boundary conservation, in particular in the Monte Alén-Monts de Cristal

  19. Harvesting Adaptation to Biodiversity Conservation in Sawmill Industry: Technology Innovation and Monitoring Program

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Guillermo J. Martínez Pastur

    2007-09-01

    Full Text Available Social demands related to native forest ecosystems are based on an efficient management, with a balance between conservation and timber production. This paper describes the industry adaptation to a biodiversity program with an alternative regeneration method. The proposed method leaves 30% of the timber-quality forest as aggregated retention and 15 m² ha-1 basal area as dispersed retention. While many costs increased considerably, the incomes also may increase by applying new management strategies and technology innovation. A monitoring program was established in the harvested stands to evaluate the ecological functionality of the applied regeneration system (forest structure, climate change, regeneration dynamics, habitat quality and abiotic cycles. The implementation of an innovated technology and monitoring program in the forest and industry determined a balance between economic values and biodiversity conservation.

  20. Integrating biological and social values when prioritizing places for biodiversity conservation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Whitehead, Amy L; Kujala, Heini; Ives, Christopher D; Gordon, Ascelin; Lentini, Pia E; Wintle, Brendan A; Nicholson, Emily; Raymond, Christopher M

    2014-08-01

    The consideration of information on social values in conjunction with biological data is critical for achieving both socially acceptable and scientifically defensible conservation planning outcomes. However, the influence of social values on spatial conservation priorities has received limited attention and is poorly understood. We present an approach that incorporates quantitative data on social values for conservation and social preferences for development into spatial conservation planning. We undertook a public participation GIS survey to spatially represent social values and development preferences and used species distribution models for 7 threatened fauna species to represent biological values. These spatially explicit data were simultaneously included in the conservation planning software Zonation to examine how conservation priorities changed with the inclusion of social data. Integrating spatially explicit information about social values and development preferences with biological data produced prioritizations that differed spatially from the solution based on only biological data. However, the integrated solutions protected a similar proportion of the species' distributions, indicating that Zonation effectively combined the biological and social data to produce socially feasible conservation solutions of approximately equivalent biological value. We were able to identify areas of the landscape where synergies and conflicts between different value sets are likely to occur. Identification of these synergies and conflicts will allow decision makers to target communication strategies to specific areas and ensure effective community engagement and positive conservation outcomes. © 2014 Society for Conservation Biology.

  1. Survey of energy conservation in India: priorities and policy dimensions

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Pachauri, R K

    1983-01-01

    The formulating and implementing of an energy conservation policy in India was delayed, because emphasis was placed upon an increase of energy production in the mistaken belief that this is tantamount to an improvement in the standard of life. Statistical data of energy production according to its source and of its consumption by individual sectors of the national economy are presented. They show that by far the largest turnover is in energy derived from firewood and vegetable and animal waste for domestic use in rural India. Although a very great potential for energy conservation exists in this domain, its implementation on a large scale is hardly practicable because it would affect many millions of village households with very different life styles dictated by varying natural conditions in individual areas of the country. Energy derived from oil and coal is used rather wastefully mainly because of obsolete equipment and technology. There is a vast scope for improvement in this area and appropriate measures have been initiated by the Government. The demand for oil derivatives for transportation is increasing dangerously, mainly because of dieselization of the national railways and of development of motorized road transport. A turnaround of this trend would require, however, a restructuring of the Indian transportation system.

  2. Priority conservation plans of ecological function areas for terrestrial endangered mammals in China

    OpenAIRE

    Gongqi Sun; Yi Qu; Meiqing Tang; Xiao Liu; Xiaofeng Luan

    2013-01-01

    To reduce costs and maximize species protection in China, we identified conservation priorities of endangered terrestrial mammals. Using geographic information system (GIS), we identified the irreplaceable values (IR) of 1,434 units of the terrestrial ecological function areas. Based on the IR values of the units, we divided the units into three classes with decreasing priorities, including the mandatory reserve (MR) units (20), the negotiable reserve (NR) units (29), and the partially reserv...

  3. Agreed but not preferred: expert views on taboo options for biodiversity conservation, given climate change.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hagerman, Shannon M; Satterfield, Terre

    2014-04-01

    Recent research indicates increasing openness among conservation experts toward a set of previously controversial proposals for biodiversity protection. These include actions such as assisted migration, and the application of climate-change-informed triage principles for decision-making (e.g., forgoing attention to target species deemed no longer viable). Little is known however, about the levels of expert agreement across different conservation adaptation actions, or the preferences that may come to shape policy recommendations. In this paper, we report findings from a web-based survey of biodiversity experts that assessed: (1) perceived risks of climate change (and other drivers) to biodiversity, (2) relative importance of different conservation goals, (3) levels of agreement/disagreement with the potential necessity of unconventional-taboo actions and approaches including affective evaluations of these, (4) preferences regarding the most important adaptation action for biodiversity, and (5) perceived barriers and strategic considerations regarding implementing adaptation initiatives. We found widespread agreement with a set of previously contentious approaches and actions, including the need for frameworks for prioritization and decision-making that take expected losses and emerging novel ecosystems into consideration. Simultaneously, this survey found enduring preferences for conventional actions (such as protected areas) as the most important policy action, and negative affective responses toward more interventionist proposals. We argue that expert views are converging on agreement across a set of taboo components in ways that differ from earlier published positions, and that these views are tempered by preferences for existing conventional actions and discomfort toward interventionist options. We discuss these findings in the context of anticipating some of the likely contours of future conservation debates. Lastly, we underscore the critical need for

  4. Priority areas in the Soil Framework Directive : the significance of soil biodiversity and ecosystem services

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Rutgers, M.; Jagers op Akkerhuis, G.A.J.M.; Bloem, J.

    2010-01-01

    Seven soil threats are distinguished in the draft text of the Soil Framework Directive of the European Commission. Soil organic matter decline and soil compaction are the most relevant for the Netherlands due to intensive agricultural land management. Loss of soil biodiversity should be considered

  5. Optimal investment for enhancing social concern about biodiversity conservation: a dynamic approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Joung Hun; Iwasa, Yoh

    2012-11-01

    To maintain biodiversity conservation areas, we need to invest in activities, such as monitoring the condition of the ecosystem, preventing illegal exploitation, and removing harmful alien species. These require a constant supply of resources, the level of which is determined by the concern of the society about biodiversity conservation. In this paper, we study the optimal fraction of the resources to invest in activities for enhancing the social concern y(t) by environmental education, museum displays, publications, and media exposure. We search for the strategy that maximizes the time-integral of the quality of the conservation area x(t) with temporal discounting. Analyses based on dynamic programming and Pontryagin's maximum principle show that the optimal control consists of two phases: (1) in the first phase, the social concern level approaches to the final optimal value y(∗), (2) in the second phase, resources are allocated to both activities, and the social concern level is kept constant y(t) = y(∗). If the social concern starts from a low initial level, the optimal path includes a period in which the quality of the conservation area declines temporarily, because all the resources are invested to enhance the social concern. When the support rate increases with the quality of the conservation area itself x(t) as well as with the level of social concern y(t), both variables may increase simultaneously in the second phase. We discuss the implication of the results to good management of biodiversity conservation areas. 2012 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved

  6. Neotropical coastal lagoons: an appraisal of their biodiversity, functioning, threats and conservation management

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    FA. Esteves

    Full Text Available Neotropical coastal lagoons (NCL are human-dominated ecosystems. Their distribution along densely populated coastal areas of developing countries makes these systems among the most threatened in the world. Here, we summarize some aspects of the causes and consequences of NCL biodiversity, their functioning, their importance to the surrounding populations, their fragility, and their responses to local and global anthropogenic impacts and the challenges that Neotropical countries face in conserving these systems. Although still scarce and geographically concentrated, a growing body of studies has shown that NCLs are physiographically diversified systems, which harbor a considerable and particular proportion of the Neotropical inland aquatic biodiversity. Despite the fact that coastal lagoons are ecotones that are intricately connected to surrounding environments, they develop mechanisms for structural and functional regulation, which confer to these systems higher productivity and carrying capacities than surrounding ecosystems. Such traits attract residential developments and subsidize local traditional populations with important economic and aesthetic ecosystem revenues such as fisheries and scenic beauty. However, the disorganized human occupation around NCLs are causing profound impacts such as eutrophication, salinization, exotic species introduction, as well as other effects, which are ultimately imposing major habitat degradations and biodiversity extirpations in NCLs. We argue that interdisciplinary conservation strategies, which integrate scientific expertise, government officials, private companies and the general public, are the most likely to overcome the geographic and economic obstacles to NCL conservation.

  7. DNA barcoding and traditional taxonomy: an integrated approach for biodiversity conservation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sheth, Bhavisha P; Thaker, Vrinda S

    2017-07-01

    Biological diversity is depleting at an alarming rate. Additionally, a vast amount of biodiversity still remains undiscovered. Taxonomy has been serving the purpose of describing, naming, and classifying species for more than 250 years. DNA taxonomy and barcoding have accelerated the rate of this process, thereby providing a tool for conservation practice. DNA barcoding and traditional taxonomy have their own inherent merits and demerits. The synergistic use of both methods, in the form of integrative taxonomy, has the potential to contribute to biodiversity conservation in a pragmatic timeframe and overcome their individual drawbacks. In this review, we discuss the basics of both these methods of biological identification (traditional taxonomy and DNA barcoding), the technical advances in integrative taxonomy, and future trends. We also present a comprehensive compilation of published examples of integrative taxonomy that refer to nine topics within biodiversity conservation. Morphological and molecular species limits were observed to be congruent in ∼41% of the 58 source studies. The majority of the studies highlighted the description of cryptic diversity through the use of molecular data, whereas research areas like endemism, biological invasion, and threatened species were less discussed in the literature.

  8. Hydrological services and biodiversity conservation under forestation scenarios: comparing options to improve watershed management

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carvalho-Santos, Claudia; Nunes, João Pedro; Sousa-Silva, Rita; Gonçalves, João; Pradinho Honrado, João

    2015-04-01

    Humans rely on ecosystems for the provision of hydrological services, namely water supply and water damage mitigation, and promoting forests is a widely used management strategy for the provision of hydrological services. Therefore, it is important to model how forests will contribute for this provision, taking into account the environmental characteristics of each region, as well as the spatio-temporal patterns of societal demand. In addition, ensuring forest protection and the delivery of forest ecosystem services is one of the aims included in the European Union biodiversity strategy to 2020. On the other hand, forest management for hydrological services must consider possible trade-offs with other services provision, as well as with biodiversity conservation. Accurate modeling and mapping of both hydrological services and biodiversity conservation value is thus important to support spatial planning and land management options involving forests. The objectives of this study were: to analyze the provision and spatial dynamics of hydrological services under two forest cover change scenarios (oak and eucalyptus/pine) compared to the current shrubland-dominated landscape; and to evaluate their spatial trade-offs with biodiversity conservation value. The Vez watershed (250km2), in northwest Portugal, was used as case-study area. SWAT (Soil and Water Assessment Tool) was applied to simulate the provision of hydrological services (water supply quantity, timing and quality; soil erosion and flood regulation), and was calibrated against daily discharge, sediments, nitrates and evapotranspiration. Good agreement was obtained between model predictions and field measurements. The maps for each service under the different scenarios were produced at the Hydrologic Response Unit (HRU) level. Biodiversity conservation value was based on nature protection regimes and on expert valuation applied to a land cover map. Statistical correlations between hydrological services provision

  9. How Do Visitors Relate to Biodiversity Conservation? An Analysis of London Zoo's "BUGS" Exhibit

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chalmin-Pui, Lauriane Suyin; Perkins, Richard

    2017-01-01

    Using a case study of London Zoo's BUGS (Biodiversity Underpinning Global Survival) exhibit, this article assesses the role of experiential learning in raising biodiversity knowledge, concern and potential pro-conservation actions. Using Personal Meaning Mindmapping, a novel method in visitor research, the study examines how adult visitors relate…

  10. Biodiversity data requirements for systematic conservation planning in the Mediterranean Sea

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Levin, Noam; Coll, Marta; Fraschetti, Simonetta

    2014-01-01

    The Mediterranean Sea’s biodiversity and ecosystems face many threats due to anthropogenic factors. Some of these include high human population growth, coastal urbanization, accelerated human activities and climate change. To enhance the formation of a science-based system of marine protected areas......, the Mediterranean Sea is lagging behind other marine regions where conservation planning adopting rigorous criteria has been applied in the past 20 years. Therefore, we call upon scientists, governments and international governmental and non-governmental conservation organizations to harmonize current approaches...

  11. Improving spatial prioritisation for remote marine regions: optimising biodiversity conservation and sustainable development trade-offs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moore, Cordelia H.; Radford, Ben T.; Possingham, Hugh P.; Heyward, Andrew J.; Stewart, Romola R.; Watts, Matthew E.; Prescott, Jim; Newman, Stephen J.; Harvey, Euan S.; Fisher, Rebecca; Bryce, Clay W.; Lowe, Ryan J.; Berry, Oliver; Espinosa-Gayosso, Alexis; Sporer, Errol; Saunders, Thor

    2016-08-01

    Creating large conservation zones in remote areas, with less intense stakeholder overlap and limited environmental information, requires periodic review to ensure zonation mitigates primary threats and fill gaps in representation, while achieving conservation targets. Follow-up reviews can utilise improved methods and data, potentially identifying new planning options yielding a desirable balance between stakeholder interests. This research explored a marine zoning system in north-west Australia-a biodiverse area with poorly documented biota. Although remote, it is economically significant (i.e. petroleum extraction and fishing). Stakeholder engagement was used to source the best available biodiversity and socio-economic data and advanced spatial analyses produced 765 high resolution data layers, including 674 species distributions representing 119 families. Gap analysis revealed the current proposed zoning system as inadequate, with 98.2% of species below the Convention on Biological Diversity 10% representation targets. A systematic conservation planning algorithm Maxan provided zoning options to meet representation targets while balancing this with industry interests. Resulting scenarios revealed that conservation targets could be met with minimal impacts on petroleum and fishing industries, with estimated losses of 4.9% and 7.2% respectively. The approach addressed important knowledge gaps and provided a powerful and transparent method to reconcile industry interests with marine conservation.

  12. From continental priorities to local conservation: a multi-level analysis for African tortoises.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pierluigi Bombi

    Full Text Available Terrestrial tortoises are the most endangered group of vertebrates but they are still largely ignored for defining global conservation priorities. In this paper, we explored within a hierarchical framework the potential contribution of prioritization studies at the continental scale to the planning of local initiatives for the conservation of African tortoises at the regional level. First, we modeled the distribution of all the African tortoise species, we calculated three indicators of conservation priority (i.e., species richness, conservation value, and complementarity, and we carried out a gap analysis at continental scale. Second, we focused on the most important region for tortoise conservation and performed the same analyses at higher resolution. Finally, we compared the results from the two scales for understanding the degree to which they are complementary. Southern Africa emerged from the continental analysis as the most important region for tortoises. Within this area, the high-resolution analysis pointed out specific core sites for conservation. The relative degree of species protection was assessed similarly at the two different resolutions. Two species appeared particularly vulnerable at both scales. Priority indices calculated at high resolution were correlated to the values calculated for the corresponding cells at low resolution but the congruence was stronger for species richness. Our results suggest to integrate the calculation of conservation value and complementarity into a hierarchical framework driven by species richness. The advantages of large scale planning include its broad perspective on complementarity and the capability to identify regions with greatest conservation potential. In this light, continental analyses allow targeting fine scale studies toward regions with maximum priority. The regional analyses at fine scale allow planning conservation measure at a resolution similar to that required for the practical

  13. The Sustainable Use and Conservation of Biodiversity in ABNJ: What can be achieved using existing international agreements?

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Rayfuse, R.; Ardron, J.; Warner, R.; Gjerde, K.

    2014-01-01

    While the international community debates the desirability and possible content of a new global instrument for the conservation and sustainable use of marine biodiversity in areas beyond national jurisdiction, alternative approaches to improving the application and implementation of existing

  14. Futures of global urban expansion: uncertainties and implications for biodiversity conservation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Güneralp, B.; Seto, K. C.

    2013-03-01

    Urbanization will place significant pressures on biodiversity across the world. However, there are large uncertainties in the amount and location of future urbanization, particularly urban land expansion. Here, we present a global analysis of urban extent circa 2000 and probabilistic forecasts of urban expansion for 2030 near protected areas and in biodiversity hotspots. We estimate that the amount of urban land within 50 km of all protected area boundaries will increase from 450 000 km2 circa 2000 to 1440 000 ± 65 000 km2 in 2030. Our analysis shows that protected areas around the world will experience significant increases in urban land within 50 km of their boundaries. China will experience the largest increase in urban land near protected areas with 304 000 ± 33 000 km2 of new urban land to be developed within 50 km of protected area boundaries. The largest urban expansion in biodiversity hotspots, over 100 000 ± 25 000 km2, is forecasted to occur in South America. Uncertainties in the forecasts of the amount and location of urban land expansion reflect uncertainties in their underlying drivers including urban population and economic growth. The forecasts point to the need to reconcile urban development and biodiversity conservation strategies.

  15. A Synopsis of Global Mapping of Freshwater Habitats and Biodiversity: Implications for Conservation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    McManamay, Ryan A. [ORNL; Griffiths, Natalie A. [ORNL; DeRolph, Christopher R. [ORNL; Pracheil, Brenda M. [ORNL

    2018-01-01

    Accurately mapping freshwater habitats and biodiversity at high-resolutions across the globe is essential for assessing the vulnerability and threats to freshwater organisms and prioritizing conservation efforts. Since the 2000s, extensive efforts have been devoted to mapping global freshwater habitats (rivers, lakes, and wetlands), the spatial representation of which has changed dramatically over time with new geospatial data products and improved remote sensing technologies. Some of these mapping efforts, however, are still coarse representations of actual conditions. Likewise, the resolution and scope of global freshwater biodiversity compilation efforts have also increased, but are yet to mirror the spatial resolution and fidelity of mapped freshwater environments. In our synopsis, we find that efforts to map freshwater habitats have been conducted independently of those for freshwater biodiversity; subsequently, there is little congruence in the spatial representation and resolution of the two efforts. We suggest that global species distribution models are needed to fill this information gap; however, limiting data on habitat characteristics at scales that complement freshwater habitats has prohibited global high-resolution biogeography efforts. Emerging research trends, such as mapping habitat alteration in freshwater ecosystems and trait biogeography, show great promise in mechanistically linking global anthropogenic stressors to freshwater biodiversity decline and extinction risk.

  16. Futures of global urban expansion: uncertainties and implications for biodiversity conservation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Güneralp, B; Seto, K C

    2013-01-01

    Urbanization will place significant pressures on biodiversity across the world. However, there are large uncertainties in the amount and location of future urbanization, particularly urban land expansion. Here, we present a global analysis of urban extent circa 2000 and probabilistic forecasts of urban expansion for 2030 near protected areas and in biodiversity hotspots. We estimate that the amount of urban land within 50 km of all protected area boundaries will increase from 450 000 km 2 circa 2000 to 1440 000 ± 65 000 km 2 in 2030. Our analysis shows that protected areas around the world will experience significant increases in urban land within 50 km of their boundaries. China will experience the largest increase in urban land near protected areas with 304 000 ± 33 000 km 2 of new urban land to be developed within 50 km of protected area boundaries. The largest urban expansion in biodiversity hotspots, over 100 000 ± 25 000 km 2 , is forecasted to occur in South America. Uncertainties in the forecasts of the amount and location of urban land expansion reflect uncertainties in their underlying drivers including urban population and economic growth. The forecasts point to the need to reconcile urban development and biodiversity conservation strategies. (letter)

  17. Natural Fostering in Fritillaria cirrhosa: Integrating herbal medicine production with biodiversity conservation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xiwen Li

    2012-02-01

    Full Text Available Protected areas are generally regarded as a power tool to conserve biodiversity. Nonetheless, few protected areas could address three crucial problems simultaneously, namely funding, public participation and rural living. Here, we introduced a new protective approach, Natural Fostering, which integrated herbal medicine production with community conservation. The principles of Natural Fostering adopted species–species interaction at community level. Most effective chemical components of herbal medicine are derived from such interaction. Fritillaria cirrhosa was selected as an economic botany, one of herbal medicines, to carry out Natural Fostering. Community habitats, herbal medicine production, funding and income of local family were investigated to verify the feasibility of Natural Fostering for biodiversity. We found the density of plant populations and the annual average personal income of rural people increased. F. cirrhosa production could provide sufficient funds for sustainable conservation. Local people gradually changed their life style of wild collection and overgrazing, instead of herbal medicine production. The fostering area set up a good sustainable economic cycle. Natural Fostering can be presented as an effective and pragmatic way to conserve biological diversity and sustainable utilization of traditional medicinal resources.

  18. Biodiversity Conservation through Traditional Beliefs System: A Case Study from Kumaon Himalayas, India

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Harsh SINGH

    2012-03-01

    Full Text Available The present study was carried out in Malay Nath sacred grove of Kumaon Himalaya, India, in appreciation of its role in biodiversity conservation. The whole grove is dedicated to the local deity “Malay Nath”, and showing semi-temperate type vegetation of the region. Rituals and cultural beliefs of the local peoples of Kumaon are plays significant role in conserving biodiversity. The study aimed at the documentation and inventory of the sacred grove, its phytodiversity, threats and conservation in the Indian Himalayan of Kumaon region, and to this, systematic field surveys were conducted during 2007-2010 covering all four seasons viz., summer, rainy, winter and spring. A total of 64 species in 58 genera under 47 families were identified, of which 35 species are flowering plants and 29 species are non-flowering plants. The dominant family was Parmeliaceae of lichen which recorded the maximum 6 species. 35 plant species under 32 genera and 23 families are used as an ethno-medicinal and the information about the ethno-medicinal plants was gathered from knowledgeable elderly local peoples of the area. Hedychium spicatum, Bergenia ciliata, Origanum vulgare, Berberis asiatica, etc. are highly exploited species and need to be conserved.

  19. Conservation priorities of Iberoamerican pig breeds and their ancestors based on microsatellite information.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cortés, O; Martinez, A M; Cañon, J; Sevane, N; Gama, L T; Ginja, C; Landi, V; Zaragoza, P; Carolino, N; Vicente, A; Sponenberg, P; Delgado, J V

    2016-07-01

    Criollo pig breeds are descendants from pigs brought to the American continent starting with Columbus second trip in 1493. Pigs currently play a key role in social economy and community cultural identity in Latin America. The aim of this study was to establish conservation priorities among a comprehensive group of Criollo pig breeds based on a set of 24 microsatellite markers and using different criteria. Spain and Portugal pig breeds, wild boar populations of different European geographic origins and commercial pig breeds were included in the analysis as potential genetic influences in the development of Criollo pig breeds. Different methods, differing in the weight given to within- and between-breed genetic variability, were used in order to estimate the contribution of each breed to global genetic diversity. As expected, the partial contribution to total heterozygosity gave high priority to Criollo pig breeds, whereas Weitzman procedures prioritized Iberian Peninsula breeds. With the combined within- and between-breed approaches, different conservation priorities were achieved. The Core Set methodologies highly prioritized Criollo pig breeds (Cr. Boliviano, Cr. Pacifico, Cr. Cubano and Cr. Guadalupe). However, weighing the between- and within-breed components with FST and 1-FST, respectively, resulted in higher contributions of Iberian breeds. In spite of the different conservation priorities according to the methodology used, other factors in addition to genetic information also need to be considered in conservation programmes, such as the economic, cultural or historical value of the breeds involved.

  20. Large-scale patterns of plant diversity and conservation priorities in South East Asia

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Marsh, S.T.; Brummitt, N.A.; Kok, de R.P.J.; Utteridge, T.M.A.

    2009-01-01

    In the absence of a complete floristic inventory, conservation priorities within South East Asia must often be based on incomplete knowledge or a rough approximation of diversity such as habitat cover. To help overcome this, a database containing distribution data for all 3 523 known flowering plant

  1. Tourism-conservation enterprises for community livelihoods and biodiversity conservation in Kenya

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Nthiga, R.W.; Duim, van der V.R.; Visseren-Hamakers, I.J.; Lamers, M.A.J.

    2015-01-01

    Tourism-conservation enterprises (TCEs), such as eco-lodges, are a relatively new strategy of the African Wildlife Foundation for enhancing community livelihoods and wildlife conservation in wildlife-rich areas outside state-protected areas in sub-Saharan Africa. This article investigates the extent

  2. Biodiversity

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gomez Giraldo; Luis Jair

    2011-01-01

    Biodiversity is a really surprising ecological event, as long as there is an extraordinary chemical and biochemical homogeneity at the very foundation of all living beings. It is believed that there are at least three phenomena that may explain it: Darwinian evolution, that is a kind of ramifying evolution; structural coupling, as defined by H. Maturana; and, finally, thermodynamical phenomena, as presented by S. Kauffman leaning on the concepts of organization and a propagating organization that diversifies, and they are all interpreted by E. D. Schneider and J. J. Kay from the idea of Earth as a thermodynamical system. The explanatory importance of this idea in the current environmental crisis, evident in other events such as global warming, is of great relevance.

  3. Remote Sensing of Ecology, Biodiversity and Conservation: A Review from the Perspective of Remote Sensing Specialists

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marc Cattet

    2010-11-01

    Full Text Available Remote sensing, the science of obtaining information via noncontact recording, has swept the fields of ecology, biodiversity and conservation (EBC. Several quality review papers have contributed to this field. However, these papers often discuss the issues from the standpoint of an ecologist or a biodiversity specialist. This review focuses on the spaceborne remote sensing of EBC from the perspective of remote sensing specialists, i.e., it is organized in the context of state-of-the-art remote sensing technology, including instruments and techniques. Herein, the instruments to be discussed consist of high spatial resolution, hyperspectral, thermal infrared, small-satellite constellation, and LIDAR sensors; and the techniques refer to image classification, vegetation index (VI, inversion algorithm, data fusion, and the integration of remote sensing (RS and geographic information system (GIS.

  4. Remote sensing of ecology, biodiversity and conservation: a review from the perspective of remote sensing specialists.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Kai; Franklin, Steven E; Guo, Xulin; Cattet, Marc

    2010-01-01

    Remote sensing, the science of obtaining information via noncontact recording, has swept the fields of ecology, biodiversity and conservation (EBC). Several quality review papers have contributed to this field. However, these papers often discuss the issues from the standpoint of an ecologist or a biodiversity specialist. This review focuses on the spaceborne remote sensing of EBC from the perspective of remote sensing specialists, i.e., it is organized in the context of state-of-the-art remote sensing technology, including instruments and techniques. Herein, the instruments to be discussed consist of high spatial resolution, hyperspectral, thermal infrared, small-satellite constellation, and LIDAR sensors; and the techniques refer to image classification, vegetation index (VI), inversion algorithm, data fusion, and the integration of remote sensing (RS) and geographic information system (GIS).

  5. Identifying conservation priorities and management strategies based on ecosystem services to improve urban sustainability in Harbin, China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Qu, Yi; Lu, Ming

    2018-01-01

    Rapid urbanization and agricultural development has resulted in the degradation of ecosystems, while also negatively impacting ecosystem services (ES) and urban sustainability. Identifying conservation priorities for ES and applying reasonable management strategies have been found to be effective methods for mitigating this phenomenon. The purpose of this study is to propose a comprehensive framework for identifying ES conservation priorities and associated management strategies for these planning areas. First, we incorporated 10 ES indicators within a systematic conservation planning (SCP) methodology in order to identify ES conservation priorities with high irreplaceability values based on conservation target goals associated with the potential distribution of ES indicators. Next, we assessed the efficiency of the ES conservation priorities for meeting the designated conservation target goals. Finally, ES conservation priorities were clustered into groups using a K-means clustering analysis in an effort to identify the dominant ES per location before formulating management strategies. We effectively identified 12 ES priorities to best represent conservation target goals for the ES indicators. These 12 priorities had a total areal coverage of 13,364 km 2 representing 25.16% of the study area. The 12 priorities were further clustered into five significantly different groups ( p -values between groups urban and agricultural areas, thereby preventing urban and agriculture sprawl and guiding sustainable urban development.

  6. Conservation Action Planning: Lessons learned from the St. Marys River watershed biodiversity conservation planning process

    Science.gov (United States)

    Patterson, Tamatha A.; Grundel, Ralph

    2014-01-01

    Conservation Action Planning (CAP) is an adaptive management planning process refined by The Nature Conservancy (TNC) and embraced worldwide as the Open Standards for the Practice of Conservation. The CAP process facilitates open, multi-institutional collaboration on a common conservation agenda through organized actions and quantified results. While specifically designed for conservation efforts, the framework is adaptable and flexible to multiple scales and can be used for any collaborative planning effort. The CAP framework addresses inception; design and development of goals, measures, and strategies; and plan implementation and evaluation. The specific components of the CAP include defining the project scope and conservation targets; assessing the ecological viability; ascertaining threats and surrounding situation; identifying opportunities and designing strategies for action; and implementing actions and monitoring results. In 2007, TNC and a multidisciplinary graduate student team from the University of Michigan's School of Natural Resources and Environment initiated a CAP for the St. Marys River, the connecting channel between Lake Superior and Lake Huron, and its local watershed. The students not only gained experience in conservation planning, but also learned lessons that notably benefited the CAP process and were valuable for any successful collaborative effort—a dedicated core team improved product quality, accelerated the timeline, and provided necessary support for ongoing efforts; an academic approach in preparation for engagement in the planning process brought applicable scientific research to the forefront, enhanced workshop facilitation, and improved stakeholder participation; and early and continuous interactions with regional stakeholders improved cooperation and built a supportive network for collaboration.

  7. Understanding the effects of different social data on selecting priority conservation areas.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karimi, Azadeh; Tulloch, Ayesha I T; Brown, Greg; Hockings, Marc

    2017-12-01

    Conservation success is contingent on assessing social and environmental factors so that cost-effective implementation of strategies and actions can be placed in a broad social-ecological context. Until now, the focus has been on how to include spatially explicit social data in conservation planning, whereas the value of different kinds of social data has received limited attention. In a regional systematic conservation planning case study in Australia, we examined the spatial concurrence of a range of spatially explicit social values and land-use preferences collected using a public participation geographic information system and biological data. We used Zonation to integrate the social data with the biological data in a series of spatial-prioritization scenarios to determine the effect of the different types of social data on spatial prioritization compared with biological data alone. The type of social data (i.e., conservation opportunities or constraints) significantly affected spatial prioritization outcomes. The integration of social values and land-use preferences under different scenarios was highly variable and generated spatial prioritizations 1.2-51% different from those based on biological data alone. The inclusion of conservation-compatible values and preferences added relatively few new areas to conservation priorities, whereas including noncompatible economic values and development preferences as costs significantly changed conservation priority areas (48.2% and 47.4%, respectively). Based on our results, a multifaceted conservation prioritization approach that combines spatially explicit social data with biological data can help conservation planners identify the type of social data to collect for more effective and feasible conservation actions. © 2017 Society for Conservation Biology.

  8. 78 FR 25093 - Multistate Conservation Grant Program; Priority List and Approval for Conservation Projects

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-04-29

    ... nongovernmental organizations that represent conservation organizations, sportsmen's and women's organizations... Regionally- coordinated Science and Collaboration. 9......... Compilation of Reservoir Habitat Arkansas Game...

  9. Biodiversity inventories and conservation of the marine fishes of Bootless Bay, Papua New Guinea

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-01-01

    Background The effective management and conservation of biodiversity is predicated on clearly defined conservation targets. Species number is frequently used as a metric for conservation prioritization and monitoring changes in ecosystem health. We conducted a series of synoptic surveys focusing on the fishes of the Bootless Bay region of Papua New Guinea to generate a checklist of fishes of the region. Bootless Bay lies directly south of Port Moresby, the capital of Papua New Guinea, and experiences the highest human population density of any marine area in the country. Our checklist will set a baseline against which future environmental changes can be tracked. Results We generated a checklist of 488 fish species in 72 families found in Bootless Bay during a two-week sampling effort. Using incident-based methods of species estimation, we extrapolate there to be approximately 940 fish species in Bootless Bay, one of the lowest reported numbers in Papua New Guinea. Conclusions Our data suggest that the Bootless Bay ecosystem of Papua New Guinea, while diverse in absolute terms, has lower fish biodiversity compared to other shallow marine areas within the country. These differences in faunal diversity are most likely a combination of unequal sampling effort as well as biophysical factors within Bootless Bay compounded by historical and/or contemporary anthropogenic disturbances. PMID:22849436

  10. Linking diversity and distribution to understand biodiversity gradients and inform conservation assessments

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fabricio Villalobos

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available Broad-scale patterns of species richness result from differential coexistence among species in distinct regions of the globe, determined by the species’ ranges and their properties such as size, shape and location. Thus, species richness and ranges are inherently linked. These two biodiversity features also yield primary information for conservation assessments. However, species richness and range size have been usually studied separately and no formal analytical link has been established. In my PhD thesis, I applied and extended a recently developed conceptual and methodological framework to study geographical association among species and similarity among sites. This range–diversity framework, along with stochastic simulation modelling, allowed me to jointly evaluate the relationship between diversity and distribution, to infer potential processes underlying composite patterns of phyllostomid bats, and to use this approach to inform conservation assessments for the Mexican avifauna. I highlight the need to explore composite patterns for understanding biodiversity patterns and show how combining diversity and distributional data can help describe complex biogeographical patterns, providing a transparent and explicit application for initial conservation assessments.

  11. Floristic inventory of vascular plant in Nam Ha National Biodiversity Conservation Area, Lao People's Democratic Republic

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jeong Ho Park

    2018-06-01

    Full Text Available The floristic inventory of vascular plants in Nam Ha National Biodiversity Conservation Area was conducted to understand the plant diversity in the northern area of Lao People's Democratic Republic. From the joint field surveys between Korean and Laos experts conducted during 2015–2017, it was found that there are 64 families, 145 genera, and 189 species distributed in the Nam Ba National Biodiversity Conservation Area, and a total of 56 families, 117 genera, and 148 species which comprise more than 78% of the total species were identified as endemic plants to the Lao People's Democratic Republic. Considering the usage of the plants, there are 91 species of medicinal plants, 33 species of ornamental plants, eight species of edible plants, and 16 species of economic plants. In addition, it was found out that Dalbergia balansae and Cinnamomum macrocarpum are categorized as vulnerable in the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN Red list, and 13 more species are categorized as the least concern.

  12. Biodiversity inventories and conservation of the marine fishes of Bootless Bay, Papua New Guinea

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Drew Joshua A

    2012-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The effective management and conservation of biodiversity is predicated on clearly defined conservation targets. Species number is frequently used as a metric for conservation prioritization and monitoring changes in ecosystem health. We conducted a series of synoptic surveys focusing on the fishes of the Bootless Bay region of Papua New Guinea to generate a checklist of fishes of the region. Bootless Bay lies directly south of Port Moresby, the capital of Papua New Guinea, and experiences the highest human population density of any marine area in the country. Our checklist will set a baseline against which future environmental changes can be tracked. Results We generated a checklist of 488 fish species in 72 families found in Bootless Bay during a two-week sampling effort. Using incident-based methods of species estimation, we extrapolate there to be approximately 940 fish species in Bootless Bay, one of the lowest reported numbers in Papua New Guinea. Conclusions Our data suggest that the Bootless Bay ecosystem of Papua New Guinea, while diverse in absolute terms, has lower fish biodiversity compared to other shallow marine areas within the country. These differences in faunal diversity are most likely a combination of unequal sampling effort as well as biophysical factors within Bootless Bay compounded by historical and/or contemporary anthropogenic disturbances.

  13. Biodiversity of Coreoidea and Pentatomidae (Heteroptera) from Atlantic forest protected areas. Insights into their conservation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dellapé, Gimena; Colpo, Karine D; Melo, María C; Montemayor, Sara I; Dellapé, Pablo M

    2018-01-01

    Although the majority of threatened species are likely to be tropical insects, knowledge of the diversity, ecological role and impact of insect biodiversity loss on ecosystem processes is very limited. Specimens belonging to four families of Heteroptera: Pentatomidae, Coreidae, Alydidae and Rhopalidae, were collected from a protected area in the Paraná Forest, the largest ecoregion of the Atlantic Forest, in Argentina. The assemblages were characterized and the biodiversity estimated, and they were compared with the assemblages found in five other protected areas in the Brazilian Atlantic Forest. In our study area, Pentatomidae had the greatest richness and diversity; Coreidae was the second most diverse family, with highest sampling deficit, highest percentage of singletons, and lowest inventory completeness; and Rhopalidae was the best sampled family with asymptotic rarefaction curves. We explored the application of the Species Conservation Importance index, following four criteria, to evaluate the relative importance of the pentatomid species studied and its usefulness for assigning conservation values to areas. We found similar Site Conservation Values among the six areas and noted that the use of criteria was limited by the lack of information, being crucial to increase the knowledge of most of the species.

  14. Protecting Important Sites for Biodiversity Contributes to Meeting Global Conservation Targets

    Science.gov (United States)

    Butchart, Stuart H. M.; Scharlemann, Jörn P. W.; Evans, Mike I.; Quader, Suhel; Aricò, Salvatore; Arinaitwe, Julius; Balman, Mark; Bennun, Leon A.; Bertzky, Bastian; Besançon, Charles; Boucher, Timothy M.; Brooks, Thomas M.; Burfield, Ian J.; Burgess, Neil D.; Chan, Simba; Clay, Rob P.; Crosby, Mike J.; Davidson, Nicholas C.; De Silva, Naamal; Devenish, Christian; Dutson, Guy C. L.; Fernández, David F. Día z; Fishpool, Lincoln D. C.; Fitzgerald, Claire; Foster, Matt; Heath, Melanie F.; Hockings, Marc; Hoffmann, Michael; Knox, David; Larsen, Frank W.; Lamoreux, John F.; Loucks, Colby; May, Ian; Millett, James; Molloy, Dominic; Morling, Paul; Parr, Mike; Ricketts, Taylor H.; Seddon, Nathalie; Skolnik, Benjamin; Stuart, Simon N.; Upgren, Amy; Woodley, Stephen

    2012-01-01

    Protected areas (PAs) are a cornerstone of conservation efforts and now cover nearly 13% of the world's land surface, with the world's governments committed to expand this to 17%. However, as biodiversity continues to decline, the effectiveness of PAs in reducing the extinction risk of species remains largely untested. We analyzed PA coverage and trends in species' extinction risk at globally significant sites for conserving birds (10,993 Important Bird Areas, IBAs) and highly threatened vertebrates and conifers (588 Alliance for Zero Extinction sites, AZEs) (referred to collectively hereafter as ‘important sites’). Species occurring in important sites with greater PA coverage experienced smaller increases in extinction risk over recent decades: the increase was half as large for bird species with>50% of the IBAs at which they occur completely covered by PAs, and a third lower for birds, mammals and amphibians restricted to protected AZEs (compared with unprotected or partially protected sites). Globally, half of the important sites for biodiversity conservation remain unprotected (49% of IBAs, 51% of AZEs). While PA coverage of important sites has increased over time, the proportion of PA area covering important sites, as opposed to less important land, has declined (by 0.45–1.14% annually since 1950 for IBAs and 0.79–1.49% annually for AZEs). Thus, while appropriately located PAs may slow the rate at which species are driven towards extinction, recent PA network expansion has under-represented important sites. We conclude that better targeted expansion of PA networks would help to improve biodiversity trends. PMID:22457717

  15. Sleeping sickness and its relationship with development and biodiversity conservation in the Luangwa Valley, Zambia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anderson, Neil E; Mubanga, Joseph; Machila, Noreen; Atkinson, Peter M; Dzingirai, Vupenyu; Welburn, Susan C

    2015-04-15

    The Luangwa Valley has a long historical association with Human African Trypanosomiasis (HAT) and is a recognised geographical focus of this disease. It is also internationally acclaimed for its high biodiversity and contains many valuable habitats. Local inhabitants of the valley have developed sustainable land use systems in co-existence with wildlife over centuries, based on non-livestock keeping practices largely due to the threat from African Animal Trypanosomiasis. Historical epidemics of human sleeping sickness have influenced how and where communities have settled and have had a profound impact on development in the Valley. Historical attempts to control trypanosomiasis have also had a negative impact on conservation of biodiversity.Centralised control over wildlife utilisation has marginalised local communities from managing the wildlife resource. To some extent this has been reversed by the implementation of community based natural resource management programmes in the latter half of the 20(th) century and the Luangwa Valley provides some of the earliest examples of such programmes. More recently, there has been significant uncontrolled migration of people into the mid-Luangwa Valley driven by pressure on resources in the eastern plateau region, encouragement from local chiefs and economic development in the tourist centre of Mfuwe. This has brought changing land-use patterns, most notably agricultural development through livestock keeping and cotton production. These changes threaten to alter the endemically stable patterns of HAT transmission and could have significant impacts on ecosystem health and ecosystem services.In this paper we review the history of HAT in the context of conservation and development and consider the impacts current changes may have on this complex social-ecological system. We conclude that improved understanding is required to identify specific circumstances where win-win trade-offs can be achieved between the conservation of

  16. Entangled judgments: expert preferences for adapting biodiversity conservation to climate change.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hagerman, Shannon M; Satterfield, Terre

    2013-11-15

    A major challenge facing conservation experts is how to adapt biodiversity planning and practice to the impacts of climate change. To date, most commonly advocated adaptation actions mirror conventional approaches (e.g. protected areas) despite decades of concern regarding their efficacy and widespread discussion of less conventional, interventionist actions. This survey of 160 experts (scientists and practitioners with specialized knowledge of the implications of climate change for biodiversity conservation) seeks to explain this deep incongruity. Specifically, we quantify current preferences for a diverse set of adaptation actions, and examine the choice logics that underpin them. We find near unanimous agreement in principle with the need for extensive active management and restoration interventions given climate change. However, when interventionist actions are provided as options alongside conventional actions, experts overwhelming prefer the latter. Four hypotheses, developed by linking the conservation adaptation literature with that of preference formation and risk and decision making, explore enduring preferences for conventional actions. They are (1) judged most ecologically effective, least risky and best understood; (2) linked with pro-ecological worldviews, marked by positive affective feelings, and an aversion to the hubris of managing nature; (3) a function of trust in biodiversity governance; and/or (4) driven by demographic factors such as gender. Overall, we find that experts prefer conventional over unconventional actions because they are viewed as relatively more effective and less risky from an ecological point of view, and because they are linked with positive affect ratings, and worldviews that are strongly pro-ecological. We discuss the roles of value-based and affective cues in shaping policy outcomes for adaptation specifically, and sustainable resource management more broadly. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  17. The development of biodiversity conservation measures in China's hydro projects: A review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bai, Ruiqiao; Liu, Xuehua; Liu, Xiaofei; Liu, Lanmei; Wang, Jianping; Liao, Sihui; Zhu, Annah; Li, Zhouyuan

    2017-11-01

    The hydropower capacity of China ranks first in the world and accounts for approximately 20% of the total energy production in the country. While hydropower has substantially contributed to meeting China's renewable energy targets and providing clean energy to rural areas, the development of hydropower in China has been met with significant controversy. Ecologically, hydro projects alter the landscape, with potential impacts to the country's aquatic biodiversity. Over the past four decades in China, various mainstream opinions and misunderstandings have been presented concerning how to alleviate the negative impacts of hydro projects on aquatic ecosystems. This article reviews research concerning potential mitigation measures to enhance aquatic biodiversity conservation in hydro projects in China. Based on the academic attention such research has attracted, three technical measures for aquatic biodiversity conservation are considered: (1) fish passages, (2) restocking efforts and (3) river and lake renovations. This article provides a historical comparison of these three practices in China to demonstrate the advantages and disadvantages of each method. The article also reviews the relevant legislation, regulations and technical guidelines concerning China's hydro projects dating back to 1979. The dynamics in research, publications, and patents concerning these three mitigation measures are summarized to demonstrate their technological developments in the context of legislative and policy advances. Data were gathered through the China Knowledge Resource Integrated Database and the State Intellectual Property Office of the People's Republic of China. Based on the analysis provided, the article recommends an expansion of China's environmental certification system for hydro projects, more robust regional legislation to bolster the national framework, the cooperation between upstream and downstream conservation mechanisms, and better monitoring to determine the efficacy

  18. Protecting important sites for biodiversity contributes to meeting global conservation targets.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stuart H M Butchart

    Full Text Available Protected areas (PAs are a cornerstone of conservation efforts and now cover nearly 13% of the world's land surface, with the world's governments committed to expand this to 17%. However, as biodiversity continues to decline, the effectiveness of PAs in reducing the extinction risk of species remains largely untested. We analyzed PA coverage and trends in species' extinction risk at globally significant sites for conserving birds (10,993 Important Bird Areas, IBAs and highly threatened vertebrates and conifers (588 Alliance for Zero Extinction sites, AZEs (referred to collectively hereafter as 'important sites'. Species occurring in important sites with greater PA coverage experienced smaller increases in extinction risk over recent decades: the increase was half as large for bird species with>50% of the IBAs at which they occur completely covered by PAs, and a third lower for birds, mammals and amphibians restricted to protected AZEs (compared with unprotected or partially protected sites. Globally, half of the important sites for biodiversity conservation remain unprotected (49% of IBAs, 51% of AZEs. While PA coverage of important sites has increased over time, the proportion of PA area covering important sites, as opposed to less important land, has declined (by 0.45-1.14% annually since 1950 for IBAs and 0.79-1.49% annually for AZEs. Thus, while appropriately located PAs may slow the rate at which species are driven towards extinction, recent PA network expansion has under-represented important sites. We conclude that better targeted expansion of PA networks would help to improve biodiversity trends.

  19. Integrating Traditional and Evolutionary Knowledge in Biodiversity Conservation: a Population Level Case Study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dylan J. Fraser

    2006-12-01

    Full Text Available Despite their dual importance in the assessment of endangered/threatened species, there have been few attempts to integrate traditional ecological knowledge (TEK and evolutionary biology knowledge (EBK at the population level. We contrasted long-term aboriginal TEK with previously obtained EBK in the context of seasonal migratory habits and population biology of a salmonid fish, brook charr, (Salvelinus fontinalis inhabiting a large, remote postglacial lake. Compilation of TEK spanning four decades involved analytical workshops, semidirective interviews, and collaborative fieldwork with local aboriginal informants and fishing guides. We found that TEK complemented EBK of brook charr by providing concordant and additional information about (1 population viability; (2 breeding areas and migration patterns of divergent populations; and (3 the behavioral ecology of populations within feeding areas; all of which may ultimately affect the maintenance of population diversity. Aboriginal concerns related to human pressures on this species, not revealed by EBK, also help to focus future conservation initiatives for divergent populations and to encourage restoration of traditional fishing practices. However, relative to EBK, the relevance of TEK to salmonid biodiversity conservation was evident mainly at a smaller spatial scale, for example, that of individual rivers occupied by populations or certain lake sectors. Nevertheless, EBK was only collected over a 4-yr period, so TEK provided an essential long-term temporal window to evaluate population differences and persistence. We concluded that, despite different conceptual underpinnings, spatially and temporally varying TEK and EBK both contribute to the knowledge base required to achieve sustainability and effective biodiversity conservation planning for a given species. Such integration may be particularly relevant in many isolated regions, where intraspecific diversity can go unrecognized due to sparse

  20. Development of marine renewable energies and biodiversity conservation - Renewable energies Volume 2

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Peguin, Marion; Le Visage, Christophe; Rolland, Guillemette; Moncorps, Sebastien

    2014-09-01

    After a presentation of the different challenges related to the development of marine renewable energies (energy challenges, conservation of the marine environment, regulatory context), this document proposes a presentation of the different marine renewable energy sectors (status of research, techniques, required conditions, and potential opportunities in France). It presents an assessment of impacts of these different sectors and some recommendations related to various opportunities and threats (noise and vibration, habitat modification, risks of collisions, residual impacts). After a synthesis, thematic sheets are proposed on biodiversity protocols, cumulative impacts, marine protected areas, connection issues, and dismantling issues

  1. Role of eucalypt and other planted forests in biodiversity conservation and the provision of biodiversity-related services

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eckehard G. Brockerhoff; Hervé Jactel; John A. Parrotta; Silvio F.B. Ferraz

    2013-01-01

    Forests provide important habitat for much of the world’s biodiversity, and the continuing global deforestation is one of our greatest environmental concerns. Planted forests represent an increasing proportion of the global forest area and partly compensate for the loss of natural forest in terms of forest area, habitat for biodiversity and ecological function. At...

  2. Building on Two Decades of Ecosystem Management and Biodiversity Conservation under the Northwest Forest Plan, USA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dominick A. DellaSala

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available The 1994 Northwest Forest Plan (NWFP shifted federal lands management from a focus on timber production to ecosystem management and biodiversity conservation. The plan established a network of conservation reserves and an ecosystem management strategy on ~10 million hectares from northern California to Washington State, USA, within the range of the federally threatened northern spotted owl (Strix occidentalis caurina. Several subsequent assessments—and 20 years of data from monitoring programs established under the plan—have demonstrated the effectiveness of this reserve network and ecosystem management approach in making progress toward attaining many of the plan’s conservation and ecosystem management goals. This paper (1 showcases the fundamental conservation biology and ecosystem management principles underpinning the NWFP as a case study for managers interested in large-landscape conservation; and (2 recommends improvements to the plan’s strategy in response to unprecedented climate change and land-use threats. Twenty years into plan implementation, however, the U.S. Forest Service and Bureau of Land Management, under pressure for increased timber harvest, are retreating from conservation measures. We believe that federal agencies should instead build on the NWFP to ensure continuing success in the Pacific Northwest. We urge federal land managers to (1 protect all remaining late-successional/old-growth forests; (2 identify climate refugia for at-risk species; (3 maintain or increase stream buffers and landscape connectivity; (4 decommission and repair failing roads to improve water quality; (5 reduce fire risk in fire-prone tree plantations; and (6 prevent logging after fires in areas of high conservation value. In many respects, the NWFP is instructive for managers considering similar large-scale conservation efforts.

  3. Biodiversity, threats and conservation challenges in the Cerrado of Amapá, an Amazonian savanna

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Karen Mustin

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available An Amazonian savanna in northern Brazil known as the Cerrado of Amapá is under imminent threat from poor land-use planning, the expansion of large-scale agriculture and other anthropogenic pressures. These savannas house a rich and unique flora and fauna, including endemic plants and animals. However, the area remains under-sampled for most taxa, and better sampling may uncover new species. We estimate that only ~9.16% of these habitats have any kind of protection, and legislative changes threaten to further weaken or remove this protection. Here we present the status of knowledge concerning the biodiversity of the Cerrado of Amapá, its conservation status, and the main threats to the conservation of this Amazonian savanna. To secure the future of these unique and imperilled habitats, we suggest urgent expansion of protected areas, as well as measures that would promote less-damaging land uses to support the local population.

  4. Identification of priority conservation areas and potential corridors for jaguars in the Caatinga biome, Brazil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morato, Ronaldo Gonçalves; Ferraz, Katia Maria Paschoaletto Micchi de Barros; de Paula, Rogério Cunha; de Campos, Cláudia Bueno

    2014-01-01

    The jaguar, Panthera onca, is a top predator with the extant population found within the Brazilian Caatinga biome now known to be on the brink of extinction. Designing new conservation units and potential corridors are therefore crucial for the long-term survival of the species within the Caatinga biome. Thus, our aims were: 1) to recognize suitable areas for jaguar occurrence, 2) to delineate areas for jaguar conservation (PJCUs), 3) to design corridors among priority areas, and 4) to prioritize PJCUs. A total of 62 points records of jaguar occurrence and 10 potential predictors were analyzed in a GIS environment. A predictive distributional map was obtained using Species Distribution Modeling (SDM) as performed by the Maximum Entropy (Maxent) algorithm. Areas equal to or higher than the median suitability value of 0.595 were selected as of high suitability for jaguar occurrence and named as Priority Jaguar Conservation Units (PJCU). Ten PJCUs with sizes varying from 23.6 km2 to 4,311.0 km2 were identified. Afterwards, we combined the response curve, as generated by SDM, and expert opinions to create a permeability matrix and to identify least cost corridors and buffer zones between each PJCU pair. Connectivity corridors and buffer zone for jaguar movement included an area of 8.884,26 km2 and the total corridor length is about 160.94 km. Prioritizing criteria indicated the PJCU representing c.a. 68.61% of the total PJCU area (PJCU # 1) as of high priority for conservation and connectivity with others PJCUs (PJCUs # 4, 5 and 7) desirable for the long term survival of the species. In conclusion, by using the jaguar as a focal species and combining SDM and expert opinion we were able to create a valid framework for practical conservation actions at the Caatinga biome. The same approach could be used for the conservation of other carnivores.

  5. Identification of priority conservation areas and potential corridors for jaguars in the Caatinga biome, Brazil.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ronaldo Gonçalves Morato

    Full Text Available The jaguar, Panthera onca, is a top predator with the extant population found within the Brazilian Caatinga biome now known to be on the brink of extinction. Designing new conservation units and potential corridors are therefore crucial for the long-term survival of the species within the Caatinga biome. Thus, our aims were: 1 to recognize suitable areas for jaguar occurrence, 2 to delineate areas for jaguar conservation (PJCUs, 3 to design corridors among priority areas, and 4 to prioritize PJCUs. A total of 62 points records of jaguar occurrence and 10 potential predictors were analyzed in a GIS environment. A predictive distributional map was obtained using Species Distribution Modeling (SDM as performed by the Maximum Entropy (Maxent algorithm. Areas equal to or higher than the median suitability value of 0.595 were selected as of high suitability for jaguar occurrence and named as Priority Jaguar Conservation Units (PJCU. Ten PJCUs with sizes varying from 23.6 km2 to 4,311.0 km2 were identified. Afterwards, we combined the response curve, as generated by SDM, and expert opinions to create a permeability matrix and to identify least cost corridors and buffer zones between each PJCU pair. Connectivity corridors and buffer zone for jaguar movement included an area of 8.884,26 km2 and the total corridor length is about 160.94 km. Prioritizing criteria indicated the PJCU representing c.a. 68.61% of the total PJCU area (PJCU # 1 as of high priority for conservation and connectivity with others PJCUs (PJCUs # 4, 5 and 7 desirable for the long term survival of the species. In conclusion, by using the jaguar as a focal species and combining SDM and expert opinion we were able to create a valid framework for practical conservation actions at the Caatinga biome. The same approach could be used for the conservation of other carnivores.

  6. Urban biodiversity, city-dwellers and conservation: how does an outdoor activity day affect the human-nature relationship?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shwartz, Assaf; Cosquer, Alix; Jaillon, Alexandre; Piron, Armony; Julliard, Romain; Raymond, Richard; Simon, Laurent; Prévot-Julliard, Anne-Caroline

    2012-01-01

    Urban conservation education programs aim to increase knowledge and awareness towards biodiversity and to change attitudes and behaviour towards the environment. However, to date, few urban conservation education studies have evaluated to what extent these programs have managed to achieve their goals. In this study, we experimentally explored the influence of an urban conservation activity day on individual knowledge, awareness and actions towards biodiversity, in both the short and longer term.We organised three activity days in Paris (France), during which people were invited to participate in urban conservation efforts. Both quantitative (questionnaire) and qualitative (interviews) methods were employed to investigate the influence of this short urban nature experience on the relationships that city-dwellers develop with nearby biodiversity. We found a strong positive correlation between the levels of participation and an immediate interest towards local urban biodiversity. In the longer term, however, although participants claimed to have gained more knowledge, local awareness and interest for species in their daily environment, they did not seem to extend this interest to participating in other related activities. These results highlight the complexity of validating the effectiveness of this type of education program for achieving conservation goals. Although such a short activity may only have a limited environmental impact, it nevertheless seems to increase people's knowledge, awareness, interest and concern. We therefore believe that when repeated locally, these short conservation education programs could enhance people's experience with nature in cities and achieve conservation goals more fully.

  7. Biodiversity Conservation in Southeast Asian Timber Concessions: a Critical Evaluation of Policy Mechanisms and Guidelines

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    Rona A. Dennis

    2008-06-01

    Full Text Available Tropical deforestation is leading to a loss of economically productive timber concessions, as well as areas with important environmental or socio-cultural values. To counteract this threat in Southeast Asia, sustainable forest management (SFM practices are becoming increasingly important. We assess the tools and guidelines that have been developed to promote SFM and the progress that has been made in Southeast Asia toward better logging practices. We specifically focus on practices relevant to biodiversity issues. Various regional or national mechanisms now inform governments and the timber industry about methods to reduce the impact of production forestry on wildlife and the forest environment. However, so many guidelines have been produced that it has become difficult to judge which ones are most relevant. In addition, most guidelines are phrased in general terms and lack specific recommendations targeted to local conditions. These might be reasons for the generally slow adoption of SFM practices in the region, with only a few countries having incorporated the guidelines into national legislation. Malaysia, Indonesia, and Laos are among the frontrunners in this process. Overall there is progress, especially in the application of certification programs, the planning and management of high conservation value forests, the regulation and control of hunting, and silvicultural management. To reduce further forest loss, there is a need to accelerate the implementation of good forest management practices. We recommend specific roles for governments, the forestry industry, and nongovernmental organizations in further promoting the implementation of SFM practices for biodiversity conservation.

  8. Emerging issues and challenges in conservation of biodiversity in the rangelands of Tanzania

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    Jafari Kideghesho

    2013-11-01

    Full Text Available Tanzania rangelands are a stronghold for biodiversity harbouring a variety of animal and plant species of economic, ecological and socio-cultural importance. Efforts to protect these resources against destruction and loss have involved, among other things, setting aside some tracks of land as protected areas in the form of national parks, nature reserves, game reserves, game controlled and wildlife management areas. However, these areas and adjacent lands have long been subjected to a number of emerging issues and challenges, which complicate their management, thus putting the resources at risk of over exploitation and extinction. These issues and challenges include, among other things, government policies, failure of conservation (as a form of land use to compete effectively with alternative land uses, habitat degradation and blockage of wildlife corridors, overexploitation and illegal resource extraction, wildfires, human population growth, poverty, HIV/AIDS pandemic and human-wildlife conflicts. In this paper, we review the emerging issues and challenges in biodiversity conservation by drawing experience from different parts of Tanzania. The paper is based on the premise that, understanding of the issues and challenges underpinning the rangelands is a crucial step towards setting up of plausible objectives, strategies and plans that will improve and lead to effective management of these areas. We conclude by recommending some proactive measures that may enhance the sustainability of the rangeland resources for the benefit of the current and future generations.

  9. Contrasting effects of visiting urban green-space and the countryside on biodiversity knowledge and conservation support.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coldwell, Deborah F; Evans, Karl L

    2017-01-01

    Conservation policy frequently assumes that increasing people's exposure to green-space enhances their knowledge of the natural world and desire to protect it. Urban development is, however, considered to be driving declining connectedness to nature. Despite this the evidence base supporting the assumption that visiting green-spaces promotes biodiversity knowledge and conservation support, and the impacts of urbanization on these relationships, is surprisingly limited. Using data from door-to-door surveys of nearly 300 residents in three pairs of small and large urban areas in England we demonstrate that people who visit green-space more regularly have higher biodiversity knowledge and support for conservation (measured using scales of pro-environmental behavior). Crucially these relationships only arise when considering visits to the countryside and not the frequency of visits to urban green-space. These patterns are robust to a suite of confounding variables including nature orientated motivations for visiting green-space, socio-economic and demographic factors, garden-use and engagement with natural history programs. Despite this the correlations that we uncover cannot unambiguously demonstrate that visiting the countryside improves biodiversity knowledge and conservation support. We consider it likely, however, that two mechanisms operate through a positive feedback loop i.e. increased visits to green-space promote an interest in and knowledge of biodiversity and support for conservation, which in turn further increase the desire to visit green-space and experience nature. The intensity of urbanization around peoples' homes, but not city size, is negatively associated with their frequency of countryside visits and biodiversity knowledge. Designing less intensely urbanized cities with good access to the countryside, combined with conservation policies that promote access to the countryside thus seems likely to maximize urban residents' biodiversity knowledge and

  10. Building on IUCN regional red lists to produce lists of species of conservation priority: a model with Irish bees.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fitzpatrick, Una; Murray, Tomás E; Paxton, Robert J; Brown, Mark J F

    2007-10-01

    A World Conservation Union (IUCN) regional red list is an objective assessment of regional extinction risk and is not the same as a list of conservation priority species. Recent research reveals the widespread, but incorrect, assumption that IUCN Red List categories represent a hierarchical list of priorities for conservation action. We developed a simple eight-step priority-setting process and applied it to the conservation of bees in Ireland. Our model is based on the national red list but also considers the global significance of the national population; the conservation status at global, continental, and regional levels; key biological, economic, and societal factors; and is compatible with existing conservation agreements and legislation. Throughout Ireland, almost one-third of the bee fauna is threatened (30 of 100 species), but our methodology resulted in a reduced list of only 17 priority species. We did not use the priority species list to broadly categorize species to the conservation action required; instead, we indicated the individual action required for all threatened, near-threatened, and data-deficient species on the national red list based on the IUCN's conservation-actions template file. Priority species lists will strongly influence prioritization of conservation actions at national levels, but action should not be exclusive to listed species. In addition, all species on this list will not necessarily require immediate action. Our method is transparent, reproducible, and readily applicable to other taxa and regions.

  11. High spatial resolution mapping of land cover types in a priority area for conservation in the Brazilian savanna

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ribeiro, F.; Roberts, D. A.; Hess, L. L.; Davis, F. W.; Caylor, K. K.; Nackoney, J.; Antunes Daldegan, G.

    2017-12-01

    Savannas are heterogeneous landscapes consisting of highly mixed land cover types that lack clear distinct boundaries. The Brazilian Cerrado is a Neotropical savanna considered a biodiversity hotspot for conservation due to its biodiversity richness and rapid transformation of its landscape by crop and pasture activities. The Cerrado is one of the most threatened Brazilian biomes and only 2.2% of its original extent is strictly protected. Accurate mapping and monitoring of its ecosystems and adjacent land use are important to select areas for conservation and to improve our understanding of the dynamics in this biome. Land cover mapping of savannas is difficult due to spectral similarity between land cover types resulting from similar vegetation structure, floristically similar components, generalization of land cover classes, and heterogeneity usually expressed as small patch sizes within the natural landscape. These factors are the major contributor to misclassification and low map accuracies among remote sensing studies in savannas. Specific challenges to map the Cerrado's land cover types are related to the spectral similarity between classes of land use and natural vegetation, such as natural grassland vs. cultivated pasture, and forest ecosystem vs. crops. This study seeks to classify and evaluate the land cover patterns across an area ranked as having extremely high priority for future conservation in the Cerrado. The main objective of this study is to identify the representativeness of each vegetation type across the landscape using high to moderate spatial resolution imagery using an automated scheme. A combination of pixel-based and object-based approaches were tested using RapidEye 3A imagery (5m spatial resolution) to classify the Cerrado's major land cover types. The random forest classifier was used to map the major ecosystems present across the area, and demonstrated to have an effective result with 68% of overall accuracy. Post

  12. Seventy-one important questions for the conservation of marine biodiversity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parsons, E C M; Favaro, Brett; Aguirre, A Alonso; Bauer, Amy L; Blight, Louise K; Cigliano, John A; Coleman, Melinda A; Côté, Isabelle M; Draheim, Megan; Fletcher, Stephen; Foley, Melissa M; Jefferson, Rebecca; Jones, Miranda C; Kelaher, Brendan P; Lundquist, Carolyn J; McCarthy, Julie-Beth; Nelson, Anne; Patterson, Katheryn; Walsh, Leslie; Wright, Andrew J; Sutherland, William J

    2014-10-01

    The ocean provides food, economic activity, and cultural value for a large proportion of humanity. Our knowledge of marine ecosystems lags behind that of terrestrial ecosystems, limiting effective protection of marine resources. We describe the outcome of 2 workshops in 2011 and 2012 to establish a list of important questions, which, if answered, would substantially improve our ability to conserve and manage the world's marine resources. Participants included individuals from academia, government, and nongovernment organizations with broad experience across disciplines, marine ecosystems, and countries that vary in levels of development. Contributors from the fields of science, conservation, industry, and government submitted questions to our workshops, which we distilled into a list of priority research questions. Through this process, we identified 71 key questions. We grouped these into 8 subject categories, each pertaining to a broad component of marine conservation: fisheries, climate change, other anthropogenic threats, ecosystems, marine citizenship, policy, societal and cultural considerations, and scientific enterprise. Our questions address many issues that are specific to marine conservation, and will serve as a road map to funders and researchers to develop programs that can greatly benefit marine conservation. © 2014 The Authors. Conservation Biology published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. on behalf of The Society for the Study of Evolution.

  13. 76 FR 793 - Multistate Conservation Grant Program; Priority List for Conservation Projects

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-01-06

    ... conservation organizations, sportsmen's organizations, and industries that support or promote fishing, hunting...,200.00 the Industry, Federal and State Agency Coalition. 11-001 Review and AFWA 46,200.00 46,200.00 92... Incentive Program. 11-069 Operation of the Arkansas Game & 0 296,000.00 296,000.00 Reservoir Fish. Fisheries...

  14. 75 FR 1651 - Multistate Conservation Grant Program; Priority List for Conservation Projects

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-01-12

    ... of wildlife and sport fish conservation projects from the Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies (AFWA). As required by the Wildlife and Sport Fish Restoration Programs Improvement Act of 2000, AFWA...: John C. Stremple, (703) 358-2156 (phone) or [email protected] (e-mail). SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION...

  15. Sympathy for the Devil: Detailing the Effects of Planning-Unit Size, Thematic Resolution of Reef Classes, and Socioeconomic Costs on Spatial Priorities for Marine Conservation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cheok, Jessica; Pressey, Robert L; Weeks, Rebecca; Andréfouët, Serge; Moloney, James

    2016-01-01

    Spatial data characteristics have the potential to influence various aspects of prioritising biodiversity areas for systematic conservation planning. There has been some exploration of the combined effects of size of planning units and level of classification of physical environments on the pattern and extent of priority areas. However, these data characteristics have yet to be explicitly investigated in terms of their interaction with different socioeconomic cost data during the spatial prioritisation process. We quantify the individual and interacting effects of three factors-planning-unit size, thematic resolution of reef classes, and spatial variability of socioeconomic costs-on spatial priorities for marine conservation, in typical marine planning exercises that use reef classification maps as a proxy for biodiversity. We assess these factors by creating 20 unique prioritisation scenarios involving combinations of different levels of each factor. Because output data from these scenarios are analogous to ecological data, we applied ecological statistics to determine spatial similarities between reserve designs. All three factors influenced prioritisations to different extents, with cost variability having the largest influence, followed by planning-unit size and thematic resolution of reef classes. The effect of thematic resolution on spatial design depended on the variability of cost data used. In terms of incidental representation of conservation objectives derived from finer-resolution data, scenarios prioritised with uniform cost outperformed those prioritised with variable cost. Following our analyses, we make recommendations to help maximise the spatial and cost efficiency and potential effectiveness of future marine conservation plans in similar planning scenarios. We recommend that planners: employ the smallest planning-unit size practical; invest in data at the highest possible resolution; and, when planning across regional extents with the intention

  16. Seed plant phylogenetic diversity and species richness in conservation planning within a global biodiversity hotspot in eastern Asia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Rong; Kraft, Nathan J B; Yu, Haiying; Li, Heng

    2015-12-01

    One of the main goals of conservation biology is to understand the factors shaping variation in biodiversity across the planet. This understanding is critical for conservation planners to be able to develop effective conservation strategies. Although many studies have focused on species richness and the protection of rare and endemic species, less attention has been paid to the protection of the phylogenetic dimension of biodiversity. We explored how phylogenetic diversity, species richness, and phylogenetic community structure vary in seed plant communities along an elevational gradient in a relatively understudied high mountain region, the Dulong Valley, in southeastern Tibet, China. As expected, phylogenetic diversity was well correlated with species richness among the elevational bands and among communities. At the community level, evergreen broad-leaved forests had the highest levels of species richness and phylogenetic diversity. Using null model analyses, we found evidence of nonrandom phylogenetic structure across the region. Evergreen broad-leaved forests were phylogenetically overdispersed, whereas other vegetation types tended to be phylogenetically clustered. We suggest that communities with high species richness or overdispersed phylogenetic structure should be a focus for biodiversity conservation within the Dulong Valley because these areas may help maximize the potential of this flora to respond to future global change. In biodiversity hotspots worldwide, we suggest that the phylogenetic structure of a community may serve as a useful measure of phylogenetic diversity in the context of conservation planning. © 2015 Society for Conservation Biology.

  17. A Novel and Cost-Effective Monitoring Approach for Outcomes in an Australian Biodiversity Conservation Incentive Program

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lindenmayer, David B.; Zammit, Charles; Attwood, Simon J.; Burns, Emma; Shepherd, Claire L.; Kay, Geoff; Wood, Jeff

    2012-01-01

    We report on the design and implementation of ecological monitoring for an Australian biodiversity conservation incentive scheme – the Environmental Stewardship Program. The Program uses competitive auctions to contract individual land managers for up to 15 years to conserve matters of National Environmental Significance (with an initial priority on nationally threatened ecological communities). The ecological monitoring was explicitly aligned with the Program’s policy objective and desired outcomes and was applied to the Program’s initial Project which targeted the critically endangered White Box-Yellow Box-Blakely's Red Gum Grassy Woodland and Derived Native Grassland ecological community in south eastern Australia. These woodlands have been reduced to <3% of their original extent and persist mostly as small remnants of variable condition on private farmland. We established monitoring sites on 153 farms located over 172,232 sq km. On each farm we established a monitoring site within the woodland patch funded for management and, wherever possible, a matched control site. The monitoring has entailed gathering data on vegetation condition, reptiles and birds. We also gathered data on the costs of experimental design, site establishment, field survey, and data analysis. The costs of monitoring are approximately 8.5% of the Program’s investment in the first four years and hence are in broad accord with the general rule of thumb that 5–10% of a program’s funding should be invested in monitoring. Once initial monitoring and site benchmarking are completed we propose to implement a novel rotating sampling approach that will maintain scientific integrity while achieving an annual cost-efficiency of up to 23%. We discuss useful lessons relevant to other monitoring programs where there is a need to provide managers with reliable early evidence of program effectiveness and to demonstrate opportunities for cost-efficiencies. PMID:23236399

  18. A novel and cost-effective monitoring approach for outcomes in an Australian biodiversity conservation incentive program.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David B Lindenmayer

    Full Text Available We report on the design and implementation of ecological monitoring for an Australian biodiversity conservation incentive scheme - the Environmental Stewardship Program. The Program uses competitive auctions to contract individual land managers for up to 15 years to conserve matters of National Environmental Significance (with an initial priority on nationally threatened ecological communities. The ecological monitoring was explicitly aligned with the Program's policy objective and desired outcomes and was applied to the Program's initial Project which targeted the critically endangered White Box-Yellow Box-Blakely's Red Gum Grassy Woodland and Derived Native Grassland ecological community in south eastern Australia. These woodlands have been reduced to <3% of their original extent and persist mostly as small remnants of variable condition on private farmland. We established monitoring sites on 153 farms located over 172,232 sq km. On each farm we established a monitoring site within the woodland patch funded for management and, wherever possible, a matched control site. The monitoring has entailed gathering data on vegetation condition, reptiles and birds. We also gathered data on the costs of experimental design, site establishment, field survey, and data analysis. The costs of monitoring are approximately 8.5% of the Program's investment in the first four years and hence are in broad accord with the general rule of thumb that 5-10% of a program's funding should be invested in monitoring. Once initial monitoring and site benchmarking are completed we propose to implement a novel rotating sampling approach that will maintain scientific integrity while achieving an annual cost-efficiency of up to 23%. We discuss useful lessons relevant to other monitoring programs where there is a need to provide managers with reliable early evidence of program effectiveness and to demonstrate opportunities for cost-efficiencies.

  19. A higher-taxon approach to rodent conservation priorities for the 21st century

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Amori, G.

    2003-12-01

    Full Text Available Although rodents are not considered among the most threatened mammals, there is ample historical evidence concerning the vulnerability to extinction of several rodent phylogenetic lineages. Owing to the high number of species, poor taxonomy and the lack of detailed information on population status, the assessment of threat status according to IUCN criteria has still to be considered arbitrary in some cases. Public appreciation is scarce and tends to overlook the ecological role and conservation problems of an order representing about 41 percent of mammalian species. We provide an overview of the most relevant information concerning the conservation status of rodents at the genus, subfamily, and family level. For species¿poor taxa, the importance of distinct populations is highlighted and a splitter approach in taxonomy is adopted. Considering present constraints, strategies for the conservation of rodent diversity must rely mainly on higher taxon and hot-spot approaches. A clear understanding of phyletic relationships among difficult groups -such as Rattus, for instance- is an urgent goal. Even if rodent taxonomy is still unstable, high taxon approach is amply justified from a conservation standpoint as it offers a more subtle overview of the world terrestrial biodiversity than that offered by large mammals. Of the circa 451 living rodent genera, 126 (27,9 %, representing 168 living species, deserve conservation attention according to the present study. About 76 % of genera at risk are monotypic, confirming the danger of losing a considerable amount of phylogenetic distinctiveness.

  20. [Some problems of the study and representation of Siberian flora biodiversity in connection with its conservation].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Olonova, M V

    2007-01-01

    The present knowledge of flora of Siberia is quite insufficient, which is a considerable obstacle to the detection of its biodiversity for conserving the gene pool. Planning conservation measures should be focused not only on species, but also on intraspecific taxa and their phylogenetic uniqueness. In the absence of genetic data, available morphological and geographical methods should be used, so that, when it is impossible to establish the actual origin and relationship of taxa, the existing morphological diverstity is at least represented, as far as it is known to be based on genetic diversity. Phenetic maps can be of much use in the study of intraspecific morphological diversity. The estimation of geographic variability and morphological diversity, as well as the evaluation of territories, can be based on such maps. To represent adequately the biodiversity existing within poorly studied, presumably hybrid plant groups, until actual origin and relationship are known, they should probably be forcedly and provisionally considered as a special type of hybrid complexes, representing the unclear present day taxonomic situation. Such complexes could include populations and individuals with morphological characters of two or more different species, until the systematic position of such populations and individuals is further explored. Until the actual taxonomic status and relationship of the components are established, they could be regarded as subspecies permitted by the Code, or as certain recorded morphological deviations from the type, without assigning any taxonomic status to them--depending on the available data on variability and distribution. In the future, the resulting provisional information on morphological diversity would help to concentrate the efforts of biologists, in possession of the newest methods, on the most important objects, and serve as the scientific base for effective measures aimed at the conservation and management of the vast gene pool of

  1. Reconciling biodiversity conservation and agricultural expansion in the subarctic environment of Iceland

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lilja Jóhannesdóttir

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available Intensified agricultural practices have driven biodiversity loss throughout the world, and although many actions aimed at halting and reversing these declines have been developed, their effectiveness depends greatly on the willingness of stakeholders to take part in conservation management. Knowledge of the willingness and capacity of landowners to engage with conservation can therefore be key to designing successful management strategies in agricultural land. In Iceland, agriculture is currently at a relatively low intensity but is very likely to expand in the near future. At the same time, Iceland supports internationally important breeding populations of many ground-nesting birds that could be seriously impacted by further expansion of agricultural activities. To understand the views of Icelandic farmers toward bird conservation, given the current potential for agricultural expansion, 62 farms across Iceland were visited and farmers were interviewed, using a structured questionnaire survey in which respondents indicated of a series of future actions. Most farmers intend to increase the area of cultivated land in the near future, and despite considering having rich birdlife on their land to be very important, most also report they are unlikely to specifically consider bird conservation in their management, even if financial compensation were available. However, as no agri-environment schemes are currently in place in Iceland, this concept is highly unfamiliar to Icelandic farmers. Nearly all respondents were unwilling, and thought it would be impossible, to delay harvest, but many were willing to consider sparing important patches of land and/or maintaining existing pools within fields (a key habitat feature for breeding waders. Farmers' views on the importance of having rich birdlife on their land and their willingness to participate in bird conservation provide a potential platform for the codesign of conservation management with landowners

  2. Identifying conservation priorities and management strategies based on ecosystem services to improve urban sustainability in Harbin, China

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yi Qu

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available Rapid urbanization and agricultural development has resulted in the degradation of ecosystems, while also negatively impacting ecosystem services (ES and urban sustainability. Identifying conservation priorities for ES and applying reasonable management strategies have been found to be effective methods for mitigating this phenomenon. The purpose of this study is to propose a comprehensive framework for identifying ES conservation priorities and associated management strategies for these planning areas. First, we incorporated 10 ES indicators within a systematic conservation planning (SCP methodology in order to identify ES conservation priorities with high irreplaceability values based on conservation target goals associated with the potential distribution of ES indicators. Next, we assessed the efficiency of the ES conservation priorities for meeting the designated conservation target goals. Finally, ES conservation priorities were clustered into groups using a K-means clustering analysis in an effort to identify the dominant ES per location before formulating management strategies. We effectively identified 12 ES priorities to best represent conservation target goals for the ES indicators. These 12 priorities had a total areal coverage of 13,364 km2 representing 25.16% of the study area. The 12 priorities were further clustered into five significantly different groups (p-values between groups < 0.05, which helped to refine management strategies formulated to best enhance ES across the study area. The proposed method allows conservation and management plans to easily adapt to a wide variety of quantitative ES target goals within urban and agricultural areas, thereby preventing urban and agriculture sprawl and guiding sustainable urban development.

  3. Letting the managers manage: analyzing capacity to conserve biodiversity in a cross-border protected area network

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sarah Clement

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available Biodiversity loss is one of the most significant drivers of ecosystem change and is projected to continue at a rapid rate. While protected areas, such as national parks, are seen as important refuges for biodiversity, their effectiveness in stemming biodiversity decline has been questioned. Public agencies have a critical role in the governance of many such areas, but there are tensions between the need for these agencies to be more "adaptive" and their current operating environment. Our aim is to analyze how institutions enable or constrain capacity to conserve biodiversity in a globally significant cross-border network of protected areas, the Australian Alps. Using a novel conceptual framework for diagnosing biodiversity institutions, our research examined institutional adaptive capacity and more general capacity for conserving biodiversity. Several intertwined issues limit public agencies' capacity to fulfill their conservation responsibilities. Narrowly defined accountability measures constrain adaptive capacity and divert attention away from addressing key biodiversity outcomes. Implications for learning were also evident, with protected area agencies demonstrating successful learning for on-ground issues but less success in applying this learning to deeper policy change. Poor capacity to buffer political and community influences in managing significant cross-border drivers of biodiversity decline signals poor fit with the institutional context and has implications for functional fit. While cooperative federalism provides potential benefits for buffering through diversity, it also means protected area agencies have restricted authority to address cross-border threats. Restrictions on staff authority and discretion, as public servants, have further implications for deploying capacity. This analysis, particularly the possibility of fostering "ambidexterity" - creatively responding to political pressures in a way that also achieves a desirable

  4. Models of Coupled Settlement and Habitat Networks for Biodiversity Conservation: Conceptual Framework, Implementation and Potential Applications

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maarten J. van Strien

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available Worldwide, the expansion of settlement and transport infrastructure is one of the most important proximate as well as ultimate causes of biodiversity loss. As much as every modern human society depends on a network of settlements that is well-connected by transport infrastructure (i.e., settlement network, animal and plant species depend on networks of habitats between which they can move (i.e., habitat networks. However, changes to a settlement network in a region often threaten the integrity of the region's habitat networks. Determining plans and policy to prevent these threats is made difficult by the numerous interactions and feedbacks that exist between and within the settlement and habitat networks. Mathematical models of coupled settlement and habitat networks can help us understand the dynamics of this social-ecological system. Yet, few attempts have been made to develop such mathematical models. In this paper, we promote the development of models of coupled settlement and habitat networks for biodiversity conservation. First, we present a conceptual framework of key variables that are ideally considered when operationalizing the coupling of settlement and habitat networks. In this framework, we first describe important network-internal interactions by differentiating between the structural (i.e., relating to purely physical conditions determining the suitability of a location for living or movement and functional (i.e., relating to the actual presence, abundance or movement of people or other organisms properties of either network. We then describe the main one-way influences that a settlement network can exert on the habitat networks and vice versa. Second, we give several recommendations for the mathematical modeling of coupled settlement and habitat networks and present several existing modeling approaches (e.g., habitat network models and land-use transport interaction models that could be used for this purpose. Lastly, we elaborate

  5. A Framework for Effective Assessment of Model-based Projections of Biodiversity to Inform the Next Generation of Global Conservation Targets

    Science.gov (United States)

    Myers, B.; Beard, T. D.; Weiskopf, S. R.; Jackson, S. T.; Tittensor, D.; Harfoot, M.; Senay, G. B.; Casey, K.; Lenton, T. M.; Leidner, A. K.; Ruane, A. C.; Ferrier, S.; Serbin, S.; Matsuda, H.; Shiklomanov, A. N.; Rosa, I.

    2017-12-01

    Biodiversity and ecosystems services underpin political targets for the conservation of biodiversity; however, previous incarnations of these biodiversity-related targets have not relied on integrated model based projections of possible outcomes based on climate and land use change. Although a few global biodiversity models are available, most biodiversity models lie along a continuum of geography and components of biodiversity. Model-based projections of the future of global biodiversity are critical to support policymakers in the development of informed global conservation targets, but the scientific community lacks a clear strategy for integrating diverse data streams in developing, and evaluating the performance of, such biodiversity models. Therefore, in this paper, we propose a framework for ongoing testing and refinement of model-based projections of biodiversity trends and change, by linking a broad variety of biodiversity models with data streams generated by advances in remote sensing, coupled with new and emerging in-situ observation technologies to inform development of essential biodiversity variables, future global biodiversity targets, and indicators. Our two main objectives are to (1) develop a framework for model testing and refining projections of a broad range of biodiversity models, focusing on global models, through the integration of diverse data streams and (2) identify the realistic outputs that can be developed and determine coupled approaches using remote sensing and new and emerging in-situ observations (e.g., metagenomics) to better inform the next generation of global biodiversity targets.

  6. Effects of Solar Geoengineering on Vegetation: Implications for Biodiversity and Conservation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dagon, K.; Schrag, D. P.

    2017-12-01

    Climate change will have significant impacts on vegetation and biodiversity. Solar geoengineering has potential to reduce the climate effects of greenhouse gas emissions through albedo modification, yet more research is needed to better understand how these techniques might impact terrestrial ecosystems. Here we utilize the fully coupled version of the Community Earth System Model to run transient solar geoengineering simulations designed to stabilize radiative forcing starting mid-century, relative to the Representative Concentration Pathway 6 (RCP6) scenario. Using results from 100-year simulations, we analyze model output through the lens of ecosystem-relevant metrics. We find that solar geoengineering improves the conservation outlook under climate change, but there are still potential impacts on biodiversity. Two commonly used climate classification systems show shifts in vegetation under solar geoengineering relative to RCP6, though we acknowledge the associated uncertainties with these systems. We also show that rates of warming and the climate velocity are minimized globally under solar geoengineering by the end of the century, while trends persist over land in the Northern Hemisphere. Shifts in the amplitude of temperature and precipitation seasonal cycles are observed in the results, and have implications for vegetation phenology. Different metrics for vegetation productivity also show decreases under solar geoengineering relative to RCP6, but could be related to the model parameterization of nutrient cycling. Vegetation water cycling is found to be an important mechanism for understanding changes in ecosystems under solar geoengineering.

  7. When you cannot see the forest for the trees: Effect of forest monocultures on biodiversity conservation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cordero Rivera, Adolfo

    2011-01-01

    Human population is growing at rates that were unimaginable only a century ago, creating such pressure on resources, which will only decrease when the decline in birth rate stabilizes population. Among these resources, wood is one of the most demanded. Global consumption of wood is currently more than 3500 million m 3, a rate multiplied by six since 1950. To meet this demand, we manage millions of hectares of forests and forest plantations, part of which are cut down each year. This logging determines drastic effects on forests, affecting the biodiversity associated and the ecosystems services provided to society. This work is a review of the structural and functional characteristics that differentiate forests and forest plantations, in spite of the confusion between both ecosystems by FAO and the forest sector companies, which have coined the oxymoron planted forests. Forest plantations are more productive than forests from the point of view of the volume of wood that can be obtained from them, and if well managed, could minimize the pressure on forests. However, they do not provide many services that forests do provide, especially in the case of monospecific plantations consisting of even aged individuals of exotic species that are managed intensively. Some of the many techniques that combine the production of wood with the conservation of biodiversity are reviewed.

  8. Molecular biogeography: towards an integrated framework for conserving pan-African biodiversity.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yoshan Moodley

    2007-05-01

    Full Text Available Biogeographic models partition ecologically similar species assemblages into discrete ecoregions. However, the history, relationship and interactions between these regions and their assemblages have rarely been explored.Here we develop a taxon-based approach that explicitly utilises molecular information to compare ecoregion history and status, which we exemplify using a continentally distributed mammalian species: the African bushbuck (Tragelaphus scriptus. We reveal unprecedented levels of genetic diversity and structure in this species and show that ecoregion biogeographic history better explains the distribution of molecular variation than phenotypic similarity or geography. We extend these data to explore ecoregion connectivity, identify core habitats and infer ecological affinities from them.This analysis defines 28 key biogeographic regions for sub-Saharan Africa, and provides a valuable framework for the incorporation of genetic and biogeographic information into a more widely applicable model for the conservation of continental biodiversity.

  9. High spatial resolution mapping of the Cerrado's land cover and land use types in the priority area for conservation Chapada da Contagem, Brazil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ribeiro, F.; Roberts, D. A.; Davis, F. W.; Antunes Daldegan, G.; Nackoney, J.; Hess, L. L.

    2016-12-01

    The Brazilian savanna, Cerrado, is the second largest biome over South America and the most floristically diverse savanna in the world. This biome is considered a conservation hotspot in respect to its biodiversity importance and rapid transformation of its landscape. The Cerrado's natural vegetation has been severely transformed by agriculture and pasture activities. Currently it is the main agricultural frontier in Brazil and one of the most threatened Brazilian biomes. This scenario results in environmental impacts such as ecosystems fragmentation as well as losses in connectivity, biodiversity and gene flow, changes in the microclimate and energy, carbon and nutrients cycles, among others. The Priority Areas for Conservation is a governmental program from Brazil that identifies areas with high conservation priority. One of this program's recommendation is a natural vegetation map including their major ecosystem classes. This study aims to generate more precise information for the Cerrado's vegetation. The main objective of this study is to identify which ecosystems are being prioritized and/or threatened by land use, refining information for further protection. In order to test methods, the priority area for conservation Chapada da Contagem was selected as the study site. This area is ranked as "extremely high priority" by the government and is located in the Federal District and Goias State, Brazil. Satellites with finer spatial resolution may improve the classification of the Cerrado's vegetation. Remote sensing methods and two criteria were tested using RapidEye 3A imagery (5m spatial resolution) collected in 2014 in order to classify the Cerrado's major land cover types of this area, as well as its land use. One criterion considers the Cerrado's major terrestrial ecosystems, which are divided into forest, savanna and grassland. The other involves scaling it down to the major physiognomic groups of each ecosystem. Other sources of environmental dataset such

  10. Protected areas and agricultural expansion: Biodiversity conservation versus economic growth in the Southeast of Brazil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moraes, Mayra Cristina Prado de; Mello, Kaline de; Toppa, Rogério Hartung

    2017-03-01

    The conversion of natural ecosystems to agricultural land and urban areas plays a threat to the protected areas and the natural ecosystems conservation. The aim of this paper is to provide an analysis of the agricultural expansion and its impact on the landscape spatial and temporal patterns in a buffer zone of a protected area located in the transition zone between the Atlantic Forest and Cerrado, in the State of São Paulo, Brazil. The land use and land cover were mapped between 1971 and 2008 and landscape metrics were calculated to provide a spatiotemporal analysis of the forest structure and the expansion of the croplands. The results showed that the landscape patterns were affected by the economic cycles. The predominant crop surrounding the protected area is sugar cane, which increased by 39% during this period, followed by citrus. This landscape change is connected to the Brazilian oil crisis in 1973. The rapid expansion of sugar cane was largely driven by Brazil's biofuel program, the "Proálcool" (pro-alcohol), a project in 1975 that mixed ethanol with gas for automotive fuel. The forest loss occurred mainly between 1971 and 1988, decreasing the forest cover from 17% in 1971 to 12.7% in 2008. Most of the forest patches are smaller than 50 ha and has low connectivity. Throughout the years, the fragments in the buffer zone have become smaller and with an elongated shape, and the park has become isolated. This forest fragmentation process and the predominance of monoculture lands in the buffer zone threaten the protected areas, and can represent a barrier for these areas to provide the effective biodiversity conservation. The measures proposed are necessary to ensure the capability of this ecosystem to sustain its original biodiversity. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  11. Assessment of the Ecosystem Services Capacity in Natural Protected Areas for Biodiversity Conservation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ronchi, Silvia; Salata, Stefano

    2017-10-01

    Recently, in Italy, a legislative proposal has been set to reform the role and the functions of natural protected areas promoting their aggregation (or the abolition) pursuing a better efficiency for their administration and economic saving. The system of natural protected areas is composed of different conservation levels: there are the Natural parks, established in the ‘80 by national or regional institution for the safeguard of natural elements, the Natura 2000 -Habitat 92/43/CEE promoted by European Union, with conservation measures for maintaining or restoring habitats and species of Communitarian interest, and the local parks of supra-municipal interest (namely PLIS) created by single municipalities or their aggregation aimed at limiting the soil sealing process. The hierarchical level of protection has determined differences in the management of the areas which leads to various approaches and strategies for biodiversity conservation and integrity. In order to assess strengths and weaknesses of the legislative initiative, the new management framework should be designed, considering the ecosystem characteristics of each natural protected area to define the future opportunities and critics, rather than, in the extreme case, remove the level of protection due to the absence of valuable ecosystem conditions. The paper provides an operative support to better apply the legislative proposal investigating the dynamics that affect all protected areas using the land take process as a major threat to biodiversity conservation in natural zones. The land take process is explored using the Land Use Change analysis (LUCa) as a possible way to determine the impact and the environmental effects of land transitions. LUCa is also useful to determine the loss of protected zones capacity to support Ecosystem Services. Finally, the assessment of the Ecosystem Services Capacity (ESC) index expresses the ability of each LULC to provide ES and, in particular, the Ecological

  12. Biodiversity conservation in Swedish forests: ways forward for a 30-year-old multi-scaled approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gustafsson, Lena; Perhans, Karin

    2010-12-01

    A multi-scaled model for biodiversity conservation in forests was introduced in Sweden 30 years ago, which makes it a pioneer example of an integrated ecosystem approach. Trees are set aside for biodiversity purposes at multiple scale levels varying from individual trees to areas of thousands of hectares, with landowner responsibility at the lowest level and with increasing state involvement at higher levels. Ecological theory supports the multi-scaled approach, and retention efforts at every harvest occasion stimulate landowners' interest in conservation. We argue that the model has large advantages but that in a future with intensified forestry and global warming, development based on more progressive thinking is necessary to maintain and increase biodiversity. Suggestions for the future include joint planning for several forest owners, consideration of cost-effectiveness, accepting opportunistic work models, adjusting retention levels to stand and landscape composition, introduction of temporary reserves, creation of "receiver habitats" for species escaping climate change, and protection of young forests.

  13. An international borderland of concern: Conservation of biodiversity in the Lower Rio Grande Valley

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leslie,, David M.

    2016-07-20

    The Lower Rio Grande Valley (LRGV) of southern Texas is located on the United States-Mexico borderland and represents a 240-kilometer (150-mile) linear stretch that ends at the Gulf of Mexico. The LRGV represents a unique transition between temperate and tropical conditions and, as such, sustains an exceptionally high diversity of plants and animals—some of them found in few, or no other, places in the United States. Examples include Leopardus pardalis albescens (northern ocelot) and Falco femoralis septentrionalis (northern aplomado falcon)—both endangered in the United States and emblematic of the LRGV. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) manages three national wildlife refuges (Santa Ana, Lower Rio Grande Valley, and Laguna Atascosa) that together make up the South Texas Refuge Complex, which actively conserves biodiversity in about 76,006 hectares (187,815.5 acres) of native riparian and upland habitats in the LRGV. These diminished habitats harbor many rare, threatened, and endangered species. This report updates the widely used 1988 USFWS biological report titled “Tamaulipan Brushland of the Lower Rio Grande Valley of South Texas: Description, Human Impacts, and Management Options” by synthesizing nearly 400 peer-reviewed scientific publications that have resulted from biological and sociological research conducted specifically in the four Texas counties of the LRGV in the past nearly 30 years. This report has three goals: (1) synthesize scientific insights gained since 1988 related to the biology and management of the LRGV and its unique biota, focusing on flora and fauna of greatest conservation concern; (2) update ongoing challenges facing Federal and State agencies and organizations that focus on conservation or key natural resources in the LRGV; and (3) redefine conservation opportunities and land-acquisition strategies that are feasible and appropriate today, given the many new and expanding constraints that challenge conservation

  14. Balancing forest-regeneration probabilities and maintenance costs in dry grasslands of high conservation priority

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bolliger, Janine; Edwards, Thomas C.; Eggenberg, Stefan; Ismail, Sascha; Seidl, Irmi; Kienast, Felix

    2011-01-01

    Abandonment of agricultural land has resulted in forest regeneration in species-rich dry grasslands across European mountain regions and threatens conservation efforts in this vegetation type. To support national conservation strategies, we used a site-selection algorithm (MARXAN) to find optimum sets of floristic regions (reporting units) that contain grasslands of high conservation priority. We sought optimum sets that would accommodate 136 important dry-grassland species and that would minimize forest regeneration and costs of management needed to forestall predicted forest regeneration. We did not consider other conservation elements of dry grasslands, such as animal species richness, cultural heritage, and changes due to climate change. Optimal sets that included 95–100% of the dry grassland species encompassed an average of 56–59 floristic regions (standard deviation, SD 5). This is about 15% of approximately 400 floristic regions that contain dry-grassland sites and translates to 4800–5300 ha of dry grassland out of a total of approximately 23,000 ha for the entire study area. Projected costs to manage the grasslands in these optimum sets ranged from CHF (Swiss francs) 5.2 to 6.0 million/year. This is only 15–20% of the current total estimated cost of approximately CHF30–45 million/year required if all dry grasslands were to be protected. The grasslands of the optimal sets may be viewed as core sites in a national conservation strategy.

  15. Designing protected areas to conserve riverine biodiversity: Lessons from a hypothetical redesign of the Kruger National Park

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Roux, JR

    2008-01-01

    Full Text Available that are largely contained within this park. Physical river types, fish species and invertebrate families or genera were used as surrogates of riverine biodiversity. Conservation planning software was used to select an optimal set of planning units to represent...

  16. Landscape and Local Controls of Insect Biodiversity in Conservation Grasslands: Implications for the Conservation of Ecosystem Service Providers in Agricultural Environments

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thomas O. Crist

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available The conservation of biodiversity in intensively managed agricultural landscapes depends on the amount and spatial arrangement of cultivated and natural lands. Conservation incentives that create semi-natural grasslands may increase the biodiversity of beneficial insects and their associated ecosystem services, such as pollination and the regulation of insect pests, but the effectiveness of these incentives for insect conservation are poorly known, especially in North America. We studied the variation in species richness, composition, and functional-group abundances of bees and predatory beetles in conservation grasslands surrounded by intensively managed agriculture in Southwest Ohio, USA. Characteristics of grassland patches and surrounding land-cover types were used to predict insect species richness, composition, and functional-group abundance using linear models and multivariate ordinations. Bee species richness was positively influenced by forb cover and beetle richness was positively related to grass cover; both taxa had greater richness in grasslands surrounded by larger amounts of semi-natural land cover. Functional groups of bees and predatory beetles defined by body size and sociality varied in their abundance according to differences in plant composition of grassland patches, as well as the surrounding land-cover diversity. Intensive agriculture in the surrounding landscape acted as a filter to both bee and beetle species composition in conservation grasslands. Our results support the need for management incentives to consider landscape-level processes in the conservation of biodiversity and ecosystem services.

  17. Identifying orchid hotspots for biodiversity conservation in Laos: the limestone karst vegetation of Vang Vieng District, Vientiane Province

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pankaj Kumar

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available A project to study the phytodiversity of the Indo-Burma Biodiversity Hotspot (IBBH was initiated by Kadoorie Farm and Botanic Garden, Hong Kong, in 2011, with the aim of surveying primary forest fragments and identifying conservation priorities within this expansive but highly threatened ecoregion. Vang Vieng District of Vientiane Province, northern Laos, was chosen as a focus for a pilot expedition, since it features an extensive karst landscape that has barely been explored. Together with officials from the Ministry of Science and Technology, Government of Lao PDR, surveys of three sites were conducted in April 2012, at the end of the dry northeast monsoon season. Emphasis was placed on Orchidaceae because it is among the most species-rich and commercially exploited flowering plant families in the region. A total of 179 specimens were collected, of which approximately 135 were unique taxa accounting for 29.6% of the orchids found in Laos and 5.8% of those found in IBBH as a whole, and equivalent to 0.27 species/hectare within the area surveyed, substantially higher than published figures for other limestone areas in the region, such as Cuc Phuong National Park in Vietnam (0.0055 species/hectare and Perlis State in Peninsular Malaysia (0.0036 species/hectare.  At least one is a species new to science, nine represent new distributional records for Laos and a further nine are new records for Vientiane Province. A list of the species encountered during the study is presented and the significance of the findings is discussed. Major threats to the natural environment in northern Laos are highlighted.

  18. Local knowledge of the flora of a region: implications in biodiversity conservation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maria da Conceição Pereira

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available The flora of a region is important in aesthetic, environmental and economic terms. Academic degree holders are fundamental for the sustainable development of a geographically isolated region such as the Azores, the University of Azores (UAc contributing to that goal. We assessed the perception of the UAc students about the origin and the importance of the Azorean flora for conservation, culture and economy, by applying a questionnaire to 309 students in different scientific areas, addressing origin, symbolic importance, economic importance, and environmental functions. Students showed some knowledge about the concepts of endemic, native, introduced and invasive species, but often failed to connect those to specific plant taxa. Most species cited as symbolic were animals, and the plants mentioned were mainly exotic/invasive. Respondents had a sense of the most important crops and forest species, and attributed several functions related to biodiversity and environmental conservation to the flora. Despite the many actions already implemented, more initiatives are required to increase the connection between Azoreans and Azorean flora.

  19. Integrating Ecological and Social Ranges of Variability in Conservation of Biodiversity: Past, Present, and Future

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sally L. Duncan

    2010-03-01

    Full Text Available Historical range of variability has been proposed as a concept that can be used by forest land managers to guide conservation of ecosystem functions and biodiversity conservation. The role of humans in historical range of variability has remained somewhat murky and unsettled, even though it is clear that humans have been, are, and will continue to be forces of disturbance and recovery in forested landscapes. We attempt to develop concepts that integrate the ecological and social forces affecting landscape variability. Toward that end, we present a conceptual framework that places "range of variability" into a broader context and integrates the ecological and social forces affecting landscapes past, present, and future. We use two terms to aid us in understanding the utility of historical range of variability as a context and future range of variability as a point of comparison: (1 the ecological range of variability is the estimated range of some ecological condition as a function of the biophysical and social forces affecting the area and (2 the social range of variability is the range of an ecological condition that society finds acceptable at a given time. We find it is important to recognize that future range of variability represents a constantly emerging and changing set of conditions, and that the more humans push a system to depart from its historical range of variabiloity domain, the less likely it becomes that historical range of variability processes will prove useful as benchmarks in recovering a system.

  20. Stakeholder perceptions of decision-making process on marine biodiversity conservation on sal island (Cape Verde

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jorge Ramos

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available In the Sal Island (Cape Verde there is a growing involvement, will and investment in the creation of tourism synergies. However, much of the economic potential of the island can be found submerged in the sea: it is its intrinsic 'biodiversity'. Due to this fact, and in order to balance environmental safety and human pressure, it has been developed a strategy addressing both diving and fishing purposes. That strategy includes the deployment of several artificial reefs (ARs around the island. In order to allocate demand for diving and fishing purposes, we have developed a socio-economic research approach addressing the theme of biodiversity and reefs (both natural and artificial and collected expectations from AR users by means of an inquiry method. It is hypothesized a project where some management measures are proposed aiming marine biodiversity conservation. Using the methodology named as analytic hierarchy process (AHP it was scrutinized stakeholders' perception on the best practice for marine biodiversity conservation in the Sal Island. The results showed that to submerge obsolete structures in rocky or mixed areas have a high potential, but does not gathers consensuality. As an overall conclusion, it seems that limitation of activities is the preferred management option to consider in the future.Na Ilha do Sal (Cabo Verde existe um crescente envolvimento, vontade e investimento na criação de sinergias turísticas. Contudo, muito do potencial económico da ilha está submerso - a biodiversidade marinha. Devido a este facto, e tendo em vista promover a sustentabilidade ambiental associada ao eco-turismo, vem sendo desenvolvida uma estratégia direccionada, quer ao mergulho, quer à pesca. Esta estratégia inclui a implantação de vários recifes artificiais (RA na Baía de Santa Maria. De modo a alocar a procura para propósitos como o mergulho e a pesca, desenvolvemos um plano de pesquisa socio-económica relativo ao tema da biodiversidade

  1. Reconciling Biodiversity Conservation and Timber Production in Mixed Uneven-Aged Mountain Forests: Identification of Ecological Intensification Pathways.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lafond, Valentine; Cordonnier, Thomas; Courbaud, Benoît

    2015-11-01

    Mixed uneven-aged forests are considered favorable to the provision of multiple ecosystem services and to the conciliation of timber production and biodiversity conservation. However, some forest managers now plan to increase the intensity of thinning and harvesting operations in these forests. Retention measures or gap creation are considered to compensate potential negative impacts on biodiversity. Our objectives were to assess the effect of these management practices on timber production and biodiversity conservation and identify potential compensating effects between these practices, using the concept of ecological intensification as a framework. We performed a simulation study coupling Samsara2, a simulation model designed for spruce-fir uneven-aged mountain forests, an uneven-aged silviculture algorithm, and biodiversity models. We analyzed the effect of parameters related to uneven-aged management practices on timber production, biodiversity, and sustainability indicators. Our study confirmed that the indicators responded differently to management practices, leading to trade-offs situations. Increasing management intensity had negative impacts on several biodiversity indicators, which could be partly compensated by the positive effect of retention measures targeting large trees, non-dominant species, and deadwood. The impact of gap creation was more mitigated, with a positive effect on the diversity of tree sizes and deadwood but a negative impact on the spruce-fir mixing balance and on the diversity of the understory layer. Through the analysis of compensating effects, we finally revealed the existence of possible ecological intensification pathways, i.e., the possibility to increase management intensity while maintaining biodiversity through the promotion of nature-based management principles (gap creation and retention measures).

  2. Spatial patterns of biodiversity conservation in a multiregional general equilibrium model

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Eppink, F.V.; Withagen, C.A.A.M.

    2009-01-01

    Migration dynamics and local biodiversity are interrelated in a way that is likely to affect patterns of regional specialisation. We assess this relationship with a New Economic Geography model that has been extended with biodiversity. Biodiversity is heterogeneous, and responds to habitat

  3. Biodiversity Conservation through Environmental Education for Sustainable Development--A Case Study from Puducherry, India

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ramadoss, Alexandar; Poyya Moli, Gopalsamy

    2011-01-01

    Promoting students commitment to protect local biodiversity is an important goal of education for sustainable development in India and elsewhere. The main focus of the biodiversity education was to create knowledge, interest and necessary skills to solve various biodiversity problems with reference to the local context. In order to develop the…

  4. Spatiotemporal dynamics of surface water networks across a global biodiversity hotspot—implications for conservation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Tulbure, Mirela G; Broich, Mark; Kininmonth, Stuart

    2014-01-01

    The concept of habitat networks represents an important tool for landscape conservation and management at regional scales. Previous studies simulated degradation of temporally fixed networks but few quantified the change in network connectivity from disintegration of key features that undergo naturally occurring spatiotemporal dynamics. This is particularly of concern for aquatic systems, which typically show high natural spatiotemporal variability. Here we focused on the Swan Coastal Plain, a bioregion that encompasses a global biodiversity hotspot in Australia with over 1500 water bodies of high biodiversity. Using graph theory, we conducted a temporal analysis of water body connectivity over 13 years of variable climate. We derived large networks of surface water bodies using Landsat data (1999–2011). We generated an ensemble of 278 potential networks at three dispersal distances approximating the maximum dispersal distance of different water dependent organisms. We assessed network connectivity through several network topology metrics and quantified the resilience of the network topology during wet and dry phases. We identified ‘stepping stone’ water bodies across time and compared our networks with theoretical network models with known properties. Results showed a highly dynamic seasonal pattern of variability in network topology metrics. A decline in connectivity over the 13 years was noted with potential negative consequences for species with limited dispersal capacity. The networks described here resemble theoretical scale-free models, also known as ‘rich get richer’ algorithm. The ‘stepping stone’ water bodies are located in the area around the Peel-Harvey Estuary, a Ramsar listed site, and some are located in a national park. Our results describe a powerful approach that can be implemented when assessing the connectivity for a particular organism with known dispersal distance. The approach of identifying the surface water bodies that act as

  5. Spatiotemporal dynamics of surface water networks across a global biodiversity hotspot—implications for conservation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tulbure, Mirela G.; Kininmonth, Stuart; Broich, Mark

    2014-11-01

    The concept of habitat networks represents an important tool for landscape conservation and management at regional scales. Previous studies simulated degradation of temporally fixed networks but few quantified the change in network connectivity from disintegration of key features that undergo naturally occurring spatiotemporal dynamics. This is particularly of concern for aquatic systems, which typically show high natural spatiotemporal variability. Here we focused on the Swan Coastal Plain, a bioregion that encompasses a global biodiversity hotspot in Australia with over 1500 water bodies of high biodiversity. Using graph theory, we conducted a temporal analysis of water body connectivity over 13 years of variable climate. We derived large networks of surface water bodies using Landsat data (1999-2011). We generated an ensemble of 278 potential networks at three dispersal distances approximating the maximum dispersal distance of different water dependent organisms. We assessed network connectivity through several network topology metrics and quantified the resilience of the network topology during wet and dry phases. We identified ‘stepping stone’ water bodies across time and compared our networks with theoretical network models with known properties. Results showed a highly dynamic seasonal pattern of variability in network topology metrics. A decline in connectivity over the 13 years was noted with potential negative consequences for species with limited dispersal capacity. The networks described here resemble theoretical scale-free models, also known as ‘rich get richer’ algorithm. The ‘stepping stone’ water bodies are located in the area around the Peel-Harvey Estuary, a Ramsar listed site, and some are located in a national park. Our results describe a powerful approach that can be implemented when assessing the connectivity for a particular organism with known dispersal distance. The approach of identifying the surface water bodies that act as

  6. Lattice-work corridors for climate change: a conceptual framework for biodiversity conservation and social-ecological resilience in a tropical elevational gradient

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Patricia A. Townsend

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available Rapid climate change poses complex challenges for conservation, especially in tropical developing countries where biodiversity is high while financial and technical resources are limited. The complexity is heightened by uncertainty in predicted effects, both for ecological systems and human communities that depend heavily on natural resource extraction and use. Effective conservation plans and measures must be inexpensive, fast-acting, and able to increase the resilience of both the ecosystem and the social-ecological system. We present conservation practitioners with a framework that strategically integrates climate change planning into connectivity measures for tropical mountain ecosystems in Costa Rica. We propose a strategy for doubling the amount of habitat currently protected in riparian corridors using measures that are relatively low cost and fast-acting, and will employ and expand human capital. We argue that habitat connectivity must be enhanced along latitudinal gradients, but also within the same elevational bands, via a lattice-work corridor system. This is needed to facilitate range shifts for mobile species and evolutionary adaptation for less mobile species. We think that conservation measures within the elevational bands must include conservation-friendly land uses that improve current and future human livelihoods under dynamic conditions. Key components include community involvement, habitat priority-setting, forest landscape restoration, and environmental services payments. Our approach is fundamentally adaptive in that the conservation measures employed are informed by on-the-ground successes and failures and modified accordingly, but are relatively low risk and fast-acting. Our proposal, if implemented, would satisfy tenets of climate-smart conservation, improve the resilience of human and ecological communities, and be a model for other locations facing similar challenges.

  7. Snakes on the Balearic islands: an invasion tale with implications for native biodiversity conservation.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Iolanda Silva-Rocha

    Full Text Available Biological invasions are a major conservation threat for biodiversity worldwide. Islands are particularly vulnerable to invasive species, especially Mediterranean islands which have suffered human pressure since ancient times. In the Balearic archipelago, reptiles represent an outstanding case with more alien than native species. Moreover, in the last decade a new wave of alien snakes landed in the main islands of the archipelago, some of which were originally snake-free. The identification of the origin and colonization pathways of alien species, as well as the prediction of their expansion, is crucial to develop effective conservation strategies. In this study, we used molecular markers to assess the allochthonous status and the putative origin of the four introduced snake species (Hemorrhois hippocrepis, Malpolon monspessulanus, Macroprotodon mauritanicus and Rhinechis scalaris as well as ecological niche models to infer their patterns of invasion and expansion based on current and future habitat suitability. For most species, DNA sequence data suggested the Iberian Peninsula as the potential origin of the allochthonous populations, although the shallow phylogeographic structure of these species prevented the identification of a restricted source-area. For all of them, the ecological niche models showed a current low habitat suitability in the Balearic, which is however predicted to increase significantly in the next few decades under climate change scenarios. Evidence from direct observations and spatial distribution of the first-occurrence records of alien snakes (but also lizards and worm lizards suggest the nursery trade, and in particular olive tree importation from Iberian Peninsula, as the main pathway of introduction of alien reptiles in the Balearic islands. This trend has been reported also for recent invasions in NE Spain, thus showing that olive trees transplantation may be an effective vector for bioinvasion across the

  8. Snakes on the Balearic islands: an invasion tale with implications for native biodiversity conservation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Silva-Rocha, Iolanda; Salvi, Daniele; Sillero, Neftalí; Mateo, Jose A; Carretero, Miguel A

    2015-01-01

    Biological invasions are a major conservation threat for biodiversity worldwide. Islands are particularly vulnerable to invasive species, especially Mediterranean islands which have suffered human pressure since ancient times. In the Balearic archipelago, reptiles represent an outstanding case with more alien than native species. Moreover, in the last decade a new wave of alien snakes landed in the main islands of the archipelago, some of which were originally snake-free. The identification of the origin and colonization pathways of alien species, as well as the prediction of their expansion, is crucial to develop effective conservation strategies. In this study, we used molecular markers to assess the allochthonous status and the putative origin of the four introduced snake species (Hemorrhois hippocrepis, Malpolon monspessulanus, Macroprotodon mauritanicus and Rhinechis scalaris) as well as ecological niche models to infer their patterns of invasion and expansion based on current and future habitat suitability. For most species, DNA sequence data suggested the Iberian Peninsula as the potential origin of the allochthonous populations, although the shallow phylogeographic structure of these species prevented the identification of a restricted source-area. For all of them, the ecological niche models showed a current low habitat suitability in the Balearic, which is however predicted to increase significantly in the next few decades under climate change scenarios. Evidence from direct observations and spatial distribution of the first-occurrence records of alien snakes (but also lizards and worm lizards) suggest the nursery trade, and in particular olive tree importation from Iberian Peninsula, as the main pathway of introduction of alien reptiles in the Balearic islands. This trend has been reported also for recent invasions in NE Spain, thus showing that olive trees transplantation may be an effective vector for bioinvasion across the Mediterranean. The

  9. Ranking energy-conservation measures to establish research priorities: synopsis of a workshop

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Moskowitz, P.D.; Le, T.Q.; Pierce, B.

    1979-05-02

    A workshop was convened to assist DOE's Technology Assessment Division in evaluating the need to prepare additional environmental- and social-impact assessments of different energy-conservation measures. Attendees participated in a decision-making exercise designed to rank 19 different energy-conservation measures according to their overall potential for achieving important national goals and their ease of implementation. The participants felt that the most-important ranking criteria dealt with questions concerning feasibility (economic, political/institutional, social, and technical) and economic efficiency. Other criteria, such as environmental quality and occupational health and safety received lower weights; possibly because of the widespread belief that most of the conservation measures presented would be environmentally beneficial. In the participants' view, the most-promising and feasible conservation measures include new-building-performance standards, retrofit of existing housing stock, new-appliance-performance standards and increased use of smaller cars. In contrast, conservation options which ranked rather low, such as diesel engines, coal-fired aluminum remelt furnaces, and cupola furnace modifications were expected to have some harmful environmental and health impacts. Most of these impacts are expected to be highly localized and of lesser national concern. Disagreement exists as to the efficacy of funding those projects deemed highly desirable and feasible versus those which are expected to have the greater environmental and social impacts. These differences must be taken into account in the research priorities that are eventually established. While environmental and social impacts of alternative energy-conservation measures may prove to be either harmful or beneficial, neither side should be ignored by the policy maker.

  10. Global direct pressures on biodiversity by large-scale metal mining: Spatial distribution and implications for conservation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Murguía, Diego I; Bringezu, Stefan; Schaldach, Rüdiger

    2016-09-15

    Biodiversity loss is widely recognized as a serious global environmental change process. While large-scale metal mining activities do not belong to the top drivers of such change, these operations exert or may intensify pressures on biodiversity by adversely changing habitats, directly and indirectly, at local and regional scales. So far, analyses of global spatial dynamics of mining and its burden on biodiversity focused on the overlap between mines and protected areas or areas of high value for conservation. However, it is less clear how operating metal mines are globally exerting pressure on zones of different biodiversity richness; a similar gap exists for unmined but known mineral deposits. By using vascular plants' diversity as a proxy to quantify overall biodiversity, this study provides a first examination of the global spatial distribution of mines and deposits for five key metals across different biodiversity zones. The results indicate that mines and deposits are not randomly distributed, but concentrated within intermediate and high diversity zones, especially bauxite and silver. In contrast, iron, gold, and copper mines and deposits are closer to a more proportional distribution while showing a high concentration in the intermediate biodiversity zone. Considering the five metals together, 63% and 61% of available mines and deposits, respectively, are located in intermediate diversity zones, comprising 52% of the global land terrestrial surface. 23% of mines and 20% of ore deposits are located in areas of high plant diversity, covering 17% of the land. 13% of mines and 19% of deposits are in areas of low plant diversity, comprising 31% of the land surface. Thus, there seems to be potential for opening new mines in areas of low biodiversity in the future. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  11. RD & D priorities for energy production and resource conservation from municipal solid waste

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    1992-08-01

    This report identifies research, development, and demonstration (RD&D) needs and priorities associated with municipal solid waste (MSW) management technologies that conserve or produce energy or resources. The changing character of MSW waste management and the public`s heightened awareness of its real and perceived benefits and costs creates opportunities for RD&D in MSW technologies. Increased recycling, for example, creates new opportunities for energy, chemicals, and materials recovery. New technologies to control and monitor emissions from MSW combustion facilities are available for further improvement or application. Furthermore, emerging waste-to-energy technologies may offer environmental, economic, and other advantages. Given these developments, DOE identified a need to assess the RD&D needs and pdodties and carefully target RD&D efforts to help solve the carbon`s waste management problem and further the National Energy Strategy. This report presents such an assessment. It identifies and Documents RD&D needs and priorities in the broad area of MSW resource . recovery, focusing on efforts to make MSW management technologies commercially viable or to improve their commercial deployment over a 5 to l0 year period. Panels of technical experts identifies 279 RD&D needs in 12 technology areas, ranking about one-fifth of these needs as priorities. A ``Peer Review Group`` identified mass-burn combustion, ``systems studies,`` landfill gas, and ash utilization and disposal as high priority areas for RD&D based on cost and the impacts of further RD&D. The results of this assessment are intended to provide guidance to DOE concerning possible future RD&D projects.

  12. Delineating priority habitat areas for the conservation of Andean bears in northern Ecuador

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peralvo, M.F.; Cuesta, F.; Van Manen, F.

    2005-01-01

    We sought to identify priority areas for the conservation of Andean bear (Tremarctos ornatus) habitat in the northern portion of the eastern Andean cordillera in Ecuador. The study area included pa??ramo and montane forest habitats within the Antisana and Cayambe-Coca ecological reserves, and unprotected areas north of these reserves with elevations ranging from 1,800 to 4,300 m. We collected data on bear occurrence along 53 transects during 2000-01 in the Oyacachi River basin, an area of indigenous communities within the Cayambe-Coca Ecological Reserve. We used those data and a set of 7 environmental variables to predict suitability of Andean bear habitat using Mahalanobis distance, a multivariate measure of dissimilarity. The Mahalanobis distance values were classified into 5 classes of habitat suitability and generalized to a resolution of 1,650-m ?? 1,650-m grid cells. Clusters of grid cells with high suitability values were delineated from the generalized model and denned as important habitat areas (IHAs) for conservation. The IHAs were ranked using a weighted index that included factors of elevation range, influence from disturbed areas, and current conservation status. We identified 12 IHAs, which were mainly associated with pa??ramo and cloud forest habitats; 2 of these areas have high conservation priorities because they are outside existing reserves and close to areas of human pressure. The distribution of the IHAs highlighted the role of human land use as the main source of fragmentation of Andean bear habitat in this region, emphasizing the importance of preserving habitat connectivity to allow the seasonal movements among habitat types that we documented for this species. Furthermore, the existence of areas with high habitat suitability close to areas of intense human use indicates the importance of bear-human conflict management as a critical Andean bear conservation strategy. We suggest that a promising conservation opportunity for this species is

  13. As RPPNs como estratégia para a conservação da biodiversidade: O caso da chapada dos veadeiros / RPPNs as a Strategy for the Conservation of Biodiversity: The Case of the Chapada dos Veadeiros

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Priscylla Cristina Alves de Lima

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available The Private Natural Heritage Reserves - RPPNs – are units of conservation for sustainable use on private property created on a voluntary work. The restrictions which they are supposed to follow become them as similar as the fully units protected. Thus, they can promote the conservation of their habitats without a big human intervention. The Chapada dos Veadeiros, a region located in the northeast of Goiás, has 15 federal RPPNs, all of them located around the National Park of Chapada dos Veadeiros, in the buffer zone area. Chapada dos Veadeiros has been habited for a long time by several landowners and farmers and for this reason, the creation of the RPPN’s represents a viable strategy for the region, which is considered a priority area for conservation project by ONG’s like the Conservation International (CI, the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF and The Nature Conservancy (TNC by the Ministry of Environment (MMA and the Institute for Biodiversity Conservation Chico Mendes(ICMBIO. The article demonstrates that the private reserves can and should be an important alternative for the implementation of a land planning developed in partnership with the local community. In this review, it was investigated the contribution of the private reserves in the Chapada dos Veadeiros for the local conservation biodiversity and its implementation process.

  14. "Conserving Marine Biodiversity in the Global Marine Commons: Co-evolution and Interaction with the Law of the Sea"

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Robin Margaret Warner

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available As global shipping intensifies and technological advances provide more opportunities to access the resources of the high seas and the deep seabed beyond national jurisdiction (ABNJ, the catalogue of threats to the marine environment and its biodiversity increase commensurately. Beyond these threats, new and emerging uses of ABNJ including more intrusive marine scientific research, bio-prospecting, deep seabed mining and environmental modification activities to mitigate the effects of climate change have the potential to harm the highly interconnected and sensitive ecosystems of the open ocean and the deep seabed if not sustainably managed now and into the future. Modern conservation norms such as environmental impact assessment, marine protected areas, marine spatial planning and development mechanisms such as technology transfer and capacity building are under developed in the legal and institutional framework for ABNJ. This article examines key normative features of the legal and institutional framework for ABNJ and their applicability to conservation of marine biodiversity, gaps and disconnects in that framework and ongoing global initiatives to develop more effective governance structures. It discusses some of the options being considered in the UN Ad Hoc Informal Open-ended Working Group to study issues related to the conservation and sustainable use of marine biodiversity in areas beyond national jurisdiction (BBNJ Working Group to evolve the legal and institutional framework for conservation and sustainable use of marine biodiversity in ABNJ and their current and future relevance for the law of the sea. It concludes that the discussions in the BBNJ Working Group and related initiatives in the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD and at regional level have demonstrated that a more integrated legal and institutional structure is needed to address growing threats to marine biodiversity in ABNJ.

  15. Elderly Adi women of Arunachal Pradesh: "living encyclopedias" and cultural refugia in biodiversity conservation of the Eastern Himalaya, India.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Singh, Ranjay K; Rallen, Orik; Padung, Egul

    2013-09-01

    Elderly women of a particular socioecological system are considered to be "living encyclopedias" in biocultural knowledge systems. These women play a pivotal role in retaining and passing on biodiversity-related traditional knowledge to the next generations. Unfortunately the fast changing sociocultural values and the impact of modernity have rendered their knowledge somewhat less valuable and they are being treated as "cultural refugia." Our study on the importance of these women in the conservation of indigenous biodiversity was conducted in 14 randomly selected villages dominated by the Adi tribe of East Siang District, Arunachal Pradesh (northeast India). Data were collected from 531 women (381 elderly and 150 young to middle aged) during 2003-2008 using conventional social science methods and participatory rural appraisal. One innovative method, namely "recipe contest," was devised to mobilize Adi women of each village in order to energies them and explore their knowledge relating to traditional foods, ethnomedicines, and conservation of indigenous biodiversity. Results indicated that 55 plant species are being used by elderly Adi women in their food systems, while 34 plant species are integral parts of ethnomedicinal practices. These women identified different plant species found under multistory canopies of community forests. Elderly women were particularly skilled in preparing traditional foods including beverages and held significantly greater knowledge of indigenous plants than younger women. Lifelong experiences and cultural diversity were found to influence the significance of biodiversity use and conservation. The conservation of biodiversity occurs in three different habitats: jhum lands (shifting cultivation), Morang forest (community managed forests), and home gardens. The knowledge and practice of elderly women about habitats and multistory vegetations, regenerative techniques, selective harvesting, and cultivation practices contribute

  16. Elderly Adi Women of Arunachal Pradesh: "Living Encyclopedias" and Cultural Refugia in Biodiversity Conservation of the Eastern Himalaya, India

    Science.gov (United States)

    Singh, Ranjay K.; Rallen, Orik; Padung, Egul

    2013-09-01

    Elderly women of a particular socioecological system are considered to be "living encyclopedias" in biocultural knowledge systems. These women play a pivotal role in retaining and passing on biodiversity-related traditional knowledge to the next generations. Unfortunately the fast changing sociocultural values and the impact of modernity have rendered their knowledge somewhat less valuable and they are being treated as "cultural refugia." Our study on the importance of these women in the conservation of indigenous biodiversity was conducted in 14 randomly selected villages dominated by the Adi tribe of East Siang District, Arunachal Pradesh (northeast India). Data were collected from 531 women (381 elderly and 150 young to middle aged) during 2003-2008 using conventional social science methods and participatory rural appraisal. One innovative method, namely "recipe contest," was devised to mobilize Adi women of each village in order to energies them and explore their knowledge relating to traditional foods, ethnomedicines, and conservation of indigenous biodiversity. Results indicated that 55 plant species are being used by elderly Adi women in their food systems, while 34 plant species are integral parts of ethnomedicinal practices. These women identified different plant species found under multistory canopies of community forests. Elderly women were particularly skilled in preparing traditional foods including beverages and held significantly greater knowledge of indigenous plants than younger women. Lifelong experiences and cultural diversity were found to influence the significance of biodiversity use and conservation. The conservation of biodiversity occurs in three different habitats: jhum lands (shifting cultivation), Morang forest (community managed forests), and home gardens. The knowledge and practice of elderly women about habitats and multistory vegetations, regenerative techniques, selective harvesting, and cultivation practices contribute

  17. Are we working towards global research priorities for management and conservation of sea turtles?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rees, A.F.; Alfaro-Shigueto, J.; Barata, P.C.R.; Bjorndal, K.A.; Bolten, A.B.; Bourjea, J.; Broderick, A.C.; Campbell, L.M.; Cardona, L.; Carreras, C.; Casale, P.; Ceriani, S.A.; Dutton, P.H.; Eguchi, T.; Formia, A.; Fuentes, M.M.P.B.; Fuller, W.J.; Girondot, M.; Godfrey, M.H.; Hamann, M.; Hart, Kristen M.; Hays, G.C.; Hochscheid, S.; Kaska, Y.; Jensen, M.P.; Mangel, J.C.; Mortimer, J.A.; Naro-Maciel, E.; Ng, C.K.Y.; Nichols, W.J.; Phillott, A.D.; Reina, R.D.; Revuelta, O.; Schofield, G.; Seminoff, J.A.; Shanker, K.; Tomás, J.; van de Merwe, J.P.; Van Houtan, K.S.; Vander Zanden, H.B.; Wallace, B.P.; Wedemeyer-Strombel, K.R.; Work, Thierry M.; Godley, B.J.

    2016-01-01

    In 2010, an international group of 35 sea turtle researchers refined an initial list of more than 200 research questions into 20 metaquestions that were considered key for management and conservation of sea turtles. These were classified under 5 categories: reproductive biology, biogeography, population ecology, threats and conservation strategies. To obtain a picture of how research is being focused towards these key questions, we undertook a systematic review of the peer-reviewed literature (2014 and 2015) attributing papers to the original 20 questions. In total, we reviewed 605 articles in full and from these 355 (59%) were judged to substantively address the 20 key questions, with others focusing on basic science and monitoring. Progress to answering the 20 questions was not uniform, and there were biases regarding focal turtle species, geographic scope and publication outlet. Whilst it offers some meaningful indications as to effort, quantifying peer-reviewed literature output is obviously not the only, and possibly not the best, metric for understanding progress towards informing key conservation and management goals. Along with the literature review, an international group based on the original project consortium was assigned to critically summarise recent progress towards answering each of the 20 questions. We found that significant research is being expended towards global priorities for management and conservation of sea turtles. Although highly variable, there has been significant progress in all the key questions identified in 2010. Undertaking this critical review has highlighted that it may be timely to undertake one or more new prioritizing exercises. For this to have maximal benefit we make a range of recommendations for its execution. These include a far greater engagement with social sciences, widening the pool of contributors and focussing the questions, perhaps disaggregating ecology and conservation.

  18. How to reconcile wood production and biodiversity conservation? The Pan-European boreal forest history gradient as an "experiment".

    Science.gov (United States)

    Naumov, Vladimir; Manton, Michael; Elbakidze, Marine; Rendenieks, Zigmars; Priednieks, Janis; Uhlianets, Siarhei; Yamelynets, Taras; Zhivotov, Anton; Angelstam, Per

    2018-07-15

    There are currently competing demands on Europe's forests and the finite resources and services that they can offer. Forestry intensification that aims at mitigating climate change and biodiversity conservation is one example. Whether or not these two objectives compete can be evaluated by comparative studies of forest landscapes with different histories. We test the hypothesis that indicators of wood production and biodiversity conservation are inversely related in a gradient of long to short forestry intensification histories. Forest management data containing stand age, volume and tree species were used to model the opportunity for wood production and biodiversity conservation in five north European forest regions representing a gradient in landscape history from very long in the West and short in the East. Wood production indicators captured the supply of coniferous wood and total biomass, as well as current accessibility by transport infrastructure. Biodiversity conservation indicators were based on modelling habitat network functionality for focal bird species dependent on different combinations of stand age and tree species composition representing naturally dynamic forests. In each region we randomly sampled 25 individual 100-km 2 areas with contiguous forest cover. Regarding wood production, Sweden's Bergslagen region had the largest areas of coniferous wood, followed by Vitebsk in Belarus and Zemgale in Latvia. NW Russia's case study regions in Pskov and Komi had the lowest values, except for the biomass indicator. The addition of forest accessibility for transportation made the Belarusian and Swedish study region most suitable for wood and biomass production, followed by Latvia and two study regions in NW Russian. Regarding biodiversity conservation, the overall rank among regions was opposite. Mixed and deciduous habitats were functional in Russia, Belarus and Latvia. Old Scots pine and Norway spruce habitats were only functional in Komi. Thus

  19. Insular ecosystems of the southeastern United States—A regional synthesis to support biodiversity conservation in a changing climate

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cartwright, Jennifer M.; Wolfe, William J.

    2016-08-11

    In the southeastern United States, insular ecosystems—such as rock outcrops, depression wetlands, high-elevation balds, flood-scoured riparian corridors, and insular prairies and barrens—occupy a small fraction of land area but constitute an important source of regional and global biodiversity, including concentrations of rare and endemic plant taxa. Maintenance of this biodiversity depends upon regimes of abiotic stress and disturbance, incorporating factors such as soil surface temperature, widely fluctuating hydrologic conditions, fires, flood scouring, and episodic droughts that may be subject to alteration by climate change. Over several decades, numerous localized, site-level investigations have yielded important information about the floristics, physical environments, and ecological dynamics of these insular ecosystems; however, the literature from these investigations has generally remained fragmented. This report consists of literature syntheses for eight categories of insular ecosystems of the southeastern United States, concerning (1) physical geography, (2) ecological determinants of community structures including vegetation dynamics and regimes of abiotic stress and disturbance, (3) contributions to regional and global biodiversity, (4) historical and current anthropogenic threats and conservation approaches, and (5) key knowledge gaps relevant to conservation, particularly in terms of climate-change effects on biodiversity. This regional synthesis was undertaken to discern patterns across ecosystems, identify knowledge gaps, and lay the groundwork for future analyses of climate-change vulnerability. Findings from this synthesis indicate that, despite their importance to regional and global biodiversity, insular ecosystems of the southeastern United States have been subjected to a variety of direct and indirect human alterations. In many cases, important questions remain concerning key determinants of ecosystem function. In particular, few

  20. Finding CreativeVoice: Applying Arts-Based Research in the Context of Biodiversity Conservation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Flor Rivera Lopez

    2018-05-01

    Full Text Available The integration of creative arts–based methods into scientific research offers a host of advantages, including the ability to capture the complex texture of lived experience, explore interconnections between nature and culture, support nonhierarchical relations, and communicate insights in engaging and empowering new ways. In this article, we describe a new method—CreativeVoice—integrating the creative arts and qualitative research, which we developed and applied in a context of pursuing community-based conservation of agricultural biodiversity. We developed CreativeVoice as an integrative method to help us understand the local contexts, cultures, and perspectives from community members of different ages and genders, in two contrasting farming communities in Oaxaca, Mexico. CreativeVoice effectively adapts and extends the Photovoice method so as to retain its benefits but address some of its limitations. This includes allowing participants to choose a genre of artistic expression connected to their own specific individual or cultural contexts and providing the capacity to move beyond capturing present-day realities to directly bring in connections to the past and visions for the future. This article describes both the CreativeVoice approach and the significant value of integrating arts-based methods into research for advancing sustainability.

  1. Green Roofs and Green Walls for Biodiversity Conservation: A Contribution to Urban Connectivity?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Flavie Mayrand

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available Green roofs and walls have recently emerged as conservation tools, and they offer promising additional opportunities to enhance biodiversity in cities. However, their ecological conditions remain poorly considered when planning wildlife corridors. To discuss the role of vegetated buildings in landscape connectivity, we reviewed the ecological and technical specificities of green walls and green roofs in light of the key factors concerning urban wildlife (patch size, quality, abundance, and isolation. Green roofs and walls show limited patch sizes, distinct habitat quality at the building scale, and limited redundancy of patch quality within the landscape. We also highlight that the abundance of roof and wall patches is often low. Future research is needed to establish if walls can be vertical corridors for wildlife, thereby reducing the isolation of green roofs. We argue that creating 3D ecological connectivity within the city requires substantial modifications of the design and maintenance of existing green building systems. We suggest that research is needed to integrate the biotic and abiotic characteristics of green buildings to make them more closely resemble those of open green spaces.

  2. Conserving Biodiversity in Urbanizing Areas: Nontraditional Views from a Bird’s Perspective

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Amanda D. Rodewald

    2008-01-01

    Full Text Available We review common population and community-level responses of wildlife to urbanization, and discuss how: (1 the amount and configuration of land cover and land use, and (2 the alteration of resources (e.g., type of vegetation, presence of food and water and processes (e.g., natural disturbance regimes, species interactions, intensity of human recreation within built environments influence animals, with special emphasis on birds. Although each landscape presents unique opportunities and constraints, we suggest that all urban areas have the potential to contribute to the conservation of biodiversity. The ecological value of urban areas may be promoted if planners, managers, and homeowners consider ways to (1 encourage retention and protection of natural habitats within urbanizing landscapes, (2 plan explicitly for open spaces and natural habitats within new subdivisions, (3 use a variety of arrangements of built and open space within developments, (4 enhance and restore habitat within open spaces, (5 improve quality of developed lands (i.e., the urban matrix rather than directing management efforts only towards parks, reserves, and open areas, and (6 celebrate urban biological diversity to foster connections between people and their natural heritage.

  3. Can rice field channels contribute to biodiversity conservation in Southern Brazilian wetlands?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Leonardo Maltchik

    2011-12-01

    species in agroecosystems has attracted attention. Irrigation channels can improve habitats and offer conditions for freshwater species conservation. Two questions from biodiversity conservation point of view are: 1 Can the irrigated channels maintain a rich diversity of macrophytes, macroinvertebrates and amphibians over the cultivation cycle? 2 Do richness, abundance and composition of aquatic species change over the rice cultivation cycle? For this, a set of four rice field channels was randomly selected in Southern Brazilian wetlands. In each channel, six sample collection events were carried out over the rice cultivation cycle (June 2005 to June 2006. A total of 160 taxa were identified in irrigated channels, including 59 macrophyte species, 91 taxa of macroinvertebrate and 10 amphibian species. The richness and abundance of macrophytes, macroinvertebrates and amphibians did not change significantly over the rice cultivation cycle. However, the species composition of these groups in the irrigation channels varied between uncultivated and cultivated periods. Our results showed that the species diversity found in the irrigation channels, together with the permanence of water enables these man-made aquatic networks to function as important systems that can contribute to the conservation of biodiversity in regions where the wetlands were converted into rice fields. The conservation of the species in agriculture, such as rice field channels, may be an important alternative for biodiversity conservation in Southern Brazil, where more than 90% of wetland systems have already been lost and the remaining ones are still at high risk due to the expansion of rice production. Rev. Biol. Trop. 59 (4: 1895-1914. Epub 2011 December 01.

  4. Partnering for Farmland Biodiversity Conservation: Civil Society and Farmers Working Hand-In-Hand

    OpenAIRE

    Znaor, Darko

    2012-01-01

    Agriculture has been Macedonia’s backbone for centuries and has always played an important role in Macedonian society. By maintaining landscape and biodiversity through the ages, Macedonian farmers have been the true guardians of an important national treasure – biodiversity. They have been the invisible hand managing landscapes, agricultural habitats and enabling farm-linked biodiversity to provide a range of ecosystem services. Pollination; pest, disease, flood and fire regulation; preserva...

  5. Noah’s Ark or World Wild Web? Cultural Perspectives in Global Scenario Studies and Their Function for Biodiversity Conservation in a Changing World

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carijn Beumer

    2010-10-01

    Full Text Available In this paper, we review the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change and the Millennium Ecosystem Assessment Scenarios and their assumptions on biodiversity conservation, using a framework based on the cultural theory (CT perspectives. We explored an adaptation of the CT typology and the significance of some underrepresented worldviews for discussions on conservation in a changing world. The evaluation of the assumptions on biodiversity conservation in the scenario studies and storylines adds to our understanding of the socio-cultural dimensions of biodiversity loss in a changing world. It contributes to an understanding of the worldviews underlying the complex debates on biodiversity conservation and sustainable development. Making such assumptions and world views explicit will help policymakers and conservationists discuss the diversity of conservation strategies in the face of uncertainty.

  6. Forest biodiversity conservation in the context of increasing woody biomass harvests

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bouget, Christophe; Gosselin, Frederic; Gosselin, Marion

    2011-01-01

    After describing peculiarities and stakes in forest biodiversity, we discuss the response of biodiversity to potential habitat changes induced by increasing forest biomass harvesting: decrease in old trees and stands, and in forest areas unmanaged for decades, increase in overall felled areas, in forest road density and in habitat fragmentation, deleterious changes in soil conditions and forest ambience, development of short and very short rotation coppices. Positive or negative effects on several components of forest biodiversity (mainly soil fauna and flora, and dead wood associated species) are explored. Needs are highlighted: biodiversity monitoring, adaptive management and context-based recommendations. (authors)

  7. Conservation status and regional habitat priorities for the Orinoco crocodile: Past, present, and future.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sergio A Balaguera-Reina

    Full Text Available Conservation of large predator species has historically been a challenge because they often overlap in resource utilization with humans; furthermore, there is a general lack of in-depth knowledge of their ecology and natural history. We assessed the conservation status of the Orinoco crocodile (Crocodylus intermedius, defining regional habitat priorities/crocodile conservation units (RHP/CCU and regional research priorities (RRP for this species. We also estimated a species distribution model (SDM to define current suitable areas where the species might inhabit and/or that might be successfully colonized. The SDM area obtained with a suitable habitat probability ≥ 0.5 was 23,621 km2. Out of 2,562 km2 are included within protected areas in both Colombia (1,643 km2 and Venezuela (919 km2, which represents only 10.8% of C. intermedius' potential range. Areas such as Laguna de Chigüichigüe (flood plain lagoon exhibited an increase in population abundance. In contrast, localities such as the Cojedes and Manapire Rivers reported a significant reduction in relative abundance values. In Colombia, disparity in previous survey methods prevented accurate estimation of population trends. Only one study in this country described an increase over a 13 years span in the Ele, Lipa, and Cravo Norte River populations based on nest surveys. We defined 34 critical areas (16 in Colombia, 17 in Venezuela, and one covering both countries where we need to preserve/research/monitor and/or generate management actions, 10 RHP/CCU (six from Venezuela and four from Colombia and 24 RRP (11 from Venezuela, 12 from Colombia, and one in both countries. Caño Guaritico (Creek and the Capanaparo River in Venezuela and the Ele, Lipa, Cravo Norte River System and the Guayabero River in Colombia were defined as areas with the most optimal conditions for long-term preservation and maintenance of C. intermedius populations. We conclude that the conservation status of this species

  8. Conservation status and regional habitat priorities for the Orinoco crocodile: Past, present, and future

    Science.gov (United States)

    Espinosa-Blanco, Ariel S.; Morales-Betancourt, Mónica A.; Seijas, Andrés E.; Lasso, Carlos A.; Antelo, Rafael; Densmore, Llewellyn D.

    2017-01-01

    Conservation of large predator species has historically been a challenge because they often overlap in resource utilization with humans; furthermore, there is a general lack of in-depth knowledge of their ecology and natural history. We assessed the conservation status of the Orinoco crocodile (Crocodylus intermedius), defining regional habitat priorities/crocodile conservation units (RHP/CCU) and regional research priorities (RRP) for this species. We also estimated a species distribution model (SDM) to define current suitable areas where the species might inhabit and/or that might be successfully colonized. The SDM area obtained with a suitable habitat probability ≥ 0.5 was 23,621 km2. Out of 2,562 km2 are included within protected areas in both Colombia (1,643 km2) and Venezuela (919 km2), which represents only 10.8% of C. intermedius’ potential range. Areas such as Laguna de Chigüichigüe (flood plain lagoon) exhibited an increase in population abundance. In contrast, localities such as the Cojedes and Manapire Rivers reported a significant reduction in relative abundance values. In Colombia, disparity in previous survey methods prevented accurate estimation of population trends. Only one study in this country described an increase over a 13 years span in the Ele, Lipa, and Cravo Norte River populations based on nest surveys. We defined 34 critical areas (16 in Colombia, 17 in Venezuela, and one covering both countries) where we need to preserve/research/monitor and/or generate management actions, 10 RHP/CCU (six from Venezuela and four from Colombia) and 24 RRP (11 from Venezuela, 12 from Colombia, and one in both countries). Caño Guaritico (Creek) and the Capanaparo River in Venezuela and the Ele, Lipa, Cravo Norte River System and the Guayabero River in Colombia were defined as areas with the most optimal conditions for long-term preservation and maintenance of C. intermedius populations. We conclude that the conservation status of this species is

  9. Evolutionary refugia and ecological refuges: key concepts for conserving Australian arid zone freshwater biodiversity under climate change

    OpenAIRE

    Davis, Jenny; Pavlova, Alexandra; Thompson, Ross; Sunnucks, Paul

    2013-01-01

    Refugia have been suggested as priority sites for conservation under climate change because of their ability to facilitate survival of biota under adverse conditions. Here, we review the likely role of refugial habitats in conserving freshwater biota in arid Australian aquatic systems where the major long-term climatic influence has been aridification. We introduce a conceptual model that characterizes evolutionary refugia and ecological refuges based on our review of the attributes of aquati...

  10. Dependency of global primary bioenergy crop potentials in 2050 on food systems, yields, biodiversity conservation and political stability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Erb, Karl-Heinz; Haberl, Helmut; Plutzar, Christoph

    2012-08-01

    The future bioenergy crop potential depends on (1) changes in the food system (food demand, agricultural technology), (2) political stability and investment security, (3) biodiversity conservation, (4) avoidance of long carbon payback times from deforestation, and (5) energy crop yields. Using a biophysical biomass-balance model, we analyze how these factors affect global primary bioenergy potentials in 2050. The model calculates biomass supply and demand balances for eleven world regions, eleven food categories, seven food crop types and two livestock categories, integrating agricultural forecasts and scenarios with a consistent global land use and NPP database. The TREND scenario results in a global primary bioenergy potential of 77 EJ/yr, alternative assumptions on food-system changes result in a range of 26-141 EJ/yr. Exclusion of areas for biodiversity conservation and inaccessible land in failed states reduces the bioenergy potential by up to 45%. Optimistic assumptions on future energy crop yields increase the potential by up to 48%, while pessimistic assumptions lower the potential by 26%. We conclude that the design of sustainable bioenergy crop production policies needs to resolve difficult trade-offs such as food vs. energy supply, renewable energy vs. biodiversity conservation or yield growth vs. reduction of environmental problems of intensive agriculture.

  11. Teaching complex ecological concepts through a demonstration garden Biodiversity, invasions and conservation in practice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Biodiversity encompasses the variety within and between species in an environment. Native communities host a diverse array of species and interactions between members. Invasions by non-native species reduce biodiversity and a community’s ability to support diverse assemblages, and are one of the lar...

  12. Options for biodiversity conservation in managed forest landscapes of multiple ownerships in Oregon and Washington, USA.

    Science.gov (United States)

    N. Suzuki; D.H. Olson

    2007-01-01

    We review the policies and management approaches used in U.S. Pacific Northwest planted forest to address biodiversity protection. We provide a case-study watershed design from southern Oregon, integrating various stand-to-landscape biodiversity-management approaches.