Craig Watson; Chuck Hayes; Joseph McCauley; Andrew Milliken
In 1999, the Management Board of the Atlantic Coast Joint Venture (ACJV) embraced the vision and framework of the then newly emerging North American Bird Conservation Initiative (NABCI). Traditionally a Joint Venture focused on the conservation of waterfowl and wetlands habitat, the ACJV expanded its role throughout the Atlantic Flyway to all resident and migratory...
Andrew Milliken; Craig Watson; Chuck Hayes
The Atlantic Coast Joint Venture is a partnership focused on the conservation of habitats for migratory birds within the Atlantic Flyway/Atlantic Coast Region from Maine south to Puerto Rico. In order to be effective in planning and implementing conservation in this large and diverse area, the joint venture must work at multiple spatial scales, from the largest ?...
Frank R., III Thompson
Habitat models are widely used in bird conservation planning to assess current habitat or populations and to evaluate management alternatives. These models include species-habitat matrix or database models, habitat suitability models, and statistical models that predict abundance. While extremely useful, these approaches have some limitations.
Edgar, E.; Anderson, R. S.; Mathis, T.; Chlus, A.; Gambhir, T.; Schmidt, C.
Oak habitats in the Pacific Northwest have decreased significantly under past land management practices. In turn, concern for bird species that depend on these habitats has increased as agricultural and urban development, fire suppression strategies, and invasive species encroachment have led to declines in oak extent. The richness and abundance of birds may be closely related to the health and diversity of these declining habitats. To identify past and present land cover distributions and understand the relationship between oak habitat and bird abundance, this project used Landsat 8 imagery with topographic, ground survey, and bird count data. A land cover map for 2013 was produced using image segmentation with genetic and machine learning algorithms to classify cover types. This land cover map was used in combination with a change detection analysis to assess the relation between bird abundance and disturbance. We found trends of bird abundance and avian species richness are not associated with local landscape disturbances. When considering change in bird abundance at the local scale, management agencies should exercise caution due to high variability associated with Breeding Bird Survey data. Further study is necessary to assess whether a relationship exists between oak associated bird species and the concentration of oaks or disturbance events.
John M. Tirpak; D. Todd Jones-Farrand; Frank R., III Thompson; Daniel J. Twedt; William B., III Uihlein
Habitat Suitability Index (HSI) models were developed to assess habitat quality for 40 priority bird species in the Central Hardwoods and West Gulf Coastal Plain/Ouachitas Bird Conservation Regions. The models incorporated both site and landscape environmental variables from one of six nationally consistent datasets. Potential habitat was first defined from unique...
Virkkala, Raimo; Heikkinen, Risto K; Fronzek, Stefan; Leikola, Niko
National reserve networks are one of the most important means of species conservation, but their efficiency may be diminished due to the projected climatic changes. Using bioclimatic envelope models and spatial data on habitats and conservation areas, we studied how efficient the reserve network will be in preserving 100 forest, mire, marshland, and alpine bird species of conservation concern in Finland in 2051-2080 under three different climate scenarios. The occurrences of the studied bird species were related to the amount of habitat preferred by each species in the different boreal zones. We employed a novel integrated habitat suitability index that takes into account both the species' probability of occurrence from the bioclimatic models and the availability of suitable habitat. Using this suitability index, the distribution of the topmost 5% suitability squares ("hotspots") in the four bird species groups in the period 1971-2000 and under the three scenarios were compared with the location of reserves with the highest amounts of the four habitats to study the efficiency of the network. In species of mires, marshlands, and Arctic mountains, a high proportion of protected habitat was included in the 5% hotspots in the scenarios in 2051-2080, showing that protected areas cover a high proportion of occurrences of bird species. In contrast, in forests in the southern and middle boreal zones, only a small proportion of the protected habitat was included in the 5% hotspots, indicating that the efficiency of the protected area network will be insufficient for forest birds in the future. In the northern boreal zone, the efficiency of the reserve network in forests was highly dependent on the strength of climate change varying between the scenarios. Overall, there is no single solution to preserving biodiversity in a changing climate, but several future pathways should be considered.
The conservation and management of wading birds has received considerable attention over the past twenty years, through research, population monitoring, habitat protection, and through activities of specialist groups devoted to all three groups, the herons, ibises and allies, and flamingos. While populations are best known in North America, greatest advances in knowledge may have come in Australasia. The status of most species and many populations is now sufficiently known to allow assessment of risk. Conservation and management techniques allow creation of global and regional action plans for conservation of many species. Global action plans are being developed, but few regional plans have been undertaken. Management of nesting sites is now particularly well appreciated. Although known in broad stroke, much remains to be learned about managing feeding habitat. Problems related to disturbance, conflict with humans, habitat loss, contaminants and other environmental stresses remain for some species and many populations. New challenges lie in creating conservation action that account for genetic stocks.
Camp, Richard J.; Gorresen, P. Marcos
This report was commissioned by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS). The purpose was to develop a monitoring program for Kaua`i forest birds in the USFWS Strategic Habitat Conservation and adaptive management frameworks. Monitoring within those frameworks is a tool to assess resource responses to management and conservation actions, and through an iterative learning process improve our understanding of species recovery, effective management, and knowledge gaps. This report provides only the monitoring component of both frameworks, and we apply the monitoring program to the East Alaka`i Protective Fence Project.
Snep, Robbert P.H.; Kooijmans, Jip Louwe; Kwak, Robert G.M.; Foppen, Ruud P.B.; Parsons, Holly; Awasthy, Monica; Sierdsema, Henk L.K.; Marzluff, John M.; Fernandez-Juricic, Esteban; Laet, de Jenny
Following the call from the United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity “Cities & Biodiversity Outlook” project to better preserve urban biodiversity, this paper presents stakeholder-specific statements for bird conservation in city environments. Based upon the current urban bird
... assistance, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Background We published a notice in the...: February 24, 2011. Jeffrey L. Underwood, Deputy Assistant Director, Fisheries and Habitat Conservation. [FR...
Camp, Richard J.; Gorresen, P. Marcos; Banko, Paul C.
This report describes the results of a pilot forest bird survey and a consequent forest bird monitoring protocol that was developed for the O'ahu Forest National Wildlife Refuge, O'ahu Island, Hawai'i. The pilot survey was conducted to inform aspects of the monitoring protocol and to provide a baseline with which to compare future surveys on the Refuge. The protocol was developed in an adaptive management framework to track bird distribution and abundance and to meet the strategic habitat conservation requirements of the Refuge. Funding for this research was provided through a Science Support Partnership grant sponsored jointly by the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS).
Lerman, Susannah B.; Nislow, Keith H.; Nowak, David J.; DeStefano, Stephen; King, David I.; Jones-Farrand, D. Todd
The alteration of forest cover and the replacement of native vegetation with buildings, roads, exotic vegetation, and other urban features pose one of the greatest threats to global biodiversity. As more land becomes slated for urban development, identifying effective urban forest wildlife management tools becomes paramount to ensure the urban forest provides habitat to sustain bird and other wildlife populations. The primary goal of this study was to integrate wildlife suitability indices to an existing national urban forest assessment tool, i-Tree. We quantified available habitat characteristics of urban forests for ten northeastern U.S. cities, and summarized bird habitat relationships from the literature in terms of variables that were represented in the i-Tree datasets. With these data, we generated habitat suitability equations for nine bird species representing a range of life history traits and conservation status that predicts the habitat suitability based on i-Tree data. We applied these equations to the urban forest datasets to calculate the overall habitat suitability for each city and the habitat suitability for different types of land-use (e.g., residential, commercial, parkland) for each bird species. The proposed habitat models will help guide wildlife managers, urban planners, and landscape designers who require specific information such as desirable habitat conditions within an urban management project to help improve the suitability of urban forests for birds.
Erwin, R.M.; Laubhan, M.K.; Cornely, J.E.; Bradshaw, D.M.; Bonney, Rick; Pashley, David N.; Cooper, Robert; Niles, Larry
Wetlands are the most productive ecosystems in the world, yet they have suffered more loss and degradation than any other ecosystem. Not surprisingly, 50% (29 of 58) of all the bird species in the U. S. (excluding Hawaii and territories) that are listed either as federally threatened or endangered, or are on the U. S. Fish & Wildlife Service 1995 List of Migratory Nongame Birds of Management Concern, occupy wetland or aquatic habitats even though many remaining wetlands across the North American landscape already are managed primarily for waterbirds. Some of these wetlands are administered by federal and state entities (e.g., national wildlife refuges, national and state parks, state wetland management areas) or are maintained on private lands through federally supported restoration and enhancement programs (e.g., Conservation Reserve Program, Wetland Reserve Program, Waterfowl Production Areas, and Partners for Wildlife). Private organizations, such as the National Audubon Society, The Nature Conservancy, and private hunting clubs, also own wetland areas that are managed specifically to benefit wildlife. If management philosophies are altered to consider the entire complex of wetlands, many wetlands can provide benefits to a broad array of waterbirds, as opposed to just one or a few species. However, challenges for natural resource managers are in forming partnerships with owners-managers of wetlands where the objectives are not primarily wildlife oriented. These owners or managers need to be included in wetland training workshops in an attempt to educate them about wetland values and secondary wildlife benefits that may be derived in flooded agricultural lands, aquaculture ponds, altered coastal marshes (mosquito control), and salt evaporation ponds. In some cases, compensation for crop damages by wildlife may be a necessary part of any cooperative agreements. In the development of a North American Bird Conservation Plan we propose a four-step approach and
Department of the Interior — The 1988 amendment to the Fish and Wildlife Conservation Act mandates the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) to “identify species, subspecies, and populations of...
Kenneth V. Rosenberg; Jeffrey V. Wells
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...
... utmost importance to meet our conservation goals and conform to statutes, regulations, and policies. The... adverse effects; map-based risk-assessment products, information on buffers and noise effects, and other...
... resultant intensive agricultural projects that follow. Such impacts have resulted in a decline in both bird habitats and biodiversity. Of particular concern are the areas important to all our endemic bird species, and already we are witnessing a series of very worrying developments. Taking each. Scopus 32: 27–34, June 2013 ...
Bruce G. Marcot
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...
Fredriksson, G.M.; Nijman, V.
We studied the distribution and habitat-use of two endemic ground birds, the Borneon groundcuckoo Carpococcyx radiatus and the Bornean peacockpheasant Polyplectron schleiermacheri in the Sungai Wain protection Forest, East Kalimantan. Both species are highly elusive and neither has been subject to
Sieges, Mason L.; Smolinsky, Jaclyn A.; Baldwin, Michael J.; Barrow, Wylie C.; Randall, Lori A.; Buler, Jeffrey J.
In response to the Deepwater Horizon oil spill in spring 2010, the Natural Resources Conservation Service implemented the Migratory Bird Habitat Initiative (MBHI) to provide temporary wetland habitat for migrating and wintering waterfowl, shorebirds, and other birds along the northern Gulf of Mexico via managed flooding of agricultural lands. We used weather-surveillance radar to conduct broad regional assessments of bird response to MBHI activities within the Mississippi Alluvial Valley and the West Gulf Coastal Plain. Across both regions, birds responded positively to MBHI management by exhibiting greater relative bird densities within sites relative to pre-management conditions in prior years and relative to surrounding non-flooded agricultural lands. Bird density at MBHI sites was generally greatest during winter for both regions. Unusually high flooding in the years prior to implementation of the MBHI confounded detection of overall changes in remotely sensed soil wetness across sites. The magnitude of bird response at MBHI sites compared to prior years and to non-flooded agricultural lands was generally related to the surrounding landscape context: proximity to areas of high bird density, amount of forested wetlands, emergent marsh, non-flooded agriculture, or permanent open water. However, these relationships varied in strength and direction between regions and seasons, a finding which we attribute to differences in seasonal bird composition and broad regional differences in landscape configuration and composition. We detected greater increases in relative bird use at sites in closer proximity to areas of high bird density during winter in both regions. Additionally, bird density was greater during winter at sites with more emergent marsh in the surrounding landscape. Thus, bird use of managed wetlands could be maximized by enrolling lands located near areas of known bird concentration and within a mosaic of existing wetlands. Weather-radar observations
In light of reported declines in grassland bird populations in North America, information about their use of airfield habitats can help inform management decisions in the context of conflicting objectives of minimizing wildlife-aircraft collisions and helping to conserve grasslan...
Ryan T. DiGaudio
Full Text Available To address the loss of wetlands and riparian forests in California, private lands habitat programs are available through U.S. federal and state government agencies to help growers, ranchers and other private landowners create and enhance wildlife habitat. The programs provide financial and technical assistance for implementing conservation practices. To evaluate the benefits of these programs for wildlife, we examined bird use of private wetlands, postharvest flooded croplands and riparian forests enrolled in habitat programs in the Central Valley and North Coast regions of California. We found that private Central Valley wetlands supported 181 bird species during the breeding season. During fall migration, postharvest flooded croplands supported wetland-dependent species and a higher density of shorebirds than did semipermanent wetlands. At the riparian sites, bird species richness increased after restoration. These results demonstrated that the programs provided habitat for the species they were designed to protect; a variety of resident and migratory bird species used the habitats, and many special status species were recorded at the sites.
M. F. Burger; D. J. Adams; T. Post; L. Sommers; B. Swift
The New York State Bird Conservation Area (BCA) Program, modeled after the National Audubon Society?s Important Bird Areas Program, is based on legislation signed by Governor Pataki in 1997. New York is the first state in the nation to enact such a program. The BCA Program seeks to provide a comprehensive, ecosystem approach to conserving birds and their habitats on...
David Anthony. Kirk
Full Text Available Many common bird species have declined as a result of agricultural intensification and this could be mitigated by organic farming. We paired sites for habitat and geographical location on organic and nonorganic farms in Ontario, Canada to test a priori predictions of effects on birds overall, 9 guilds and 22 species in relation to candidate models for farming practices (13 variables, local habitat features (12 variables, or habitat features that influence susceptibility to predation. We found that: (1 Overall bird abundance, but not richness, was significantly (p < 0.05 higher on organic sites (mean 43.1 individuals per site than nonorganic sites (35.8 individuals per site. Significantly more species of birds were observed for five guilds, including primary grassland birds, on organic vs. nonorganic sites. No guild had higher richness or abundance on nonorganic farms; (2 Farming practice models were the best (Î"AIC < 4 for abundance of birds overall, primary grassland bird richness, sallier aerial insectivore richness and abundance, and abundance of ground nesters; (3 Habitat models were the best for overall richness, Neotropical migrant abundance, richness and abundance of Ontario-USA-Mexico (short-distance migrants and resident richness; (4 Predation models were the best for richness of secondary grassland birds and ground feeders; (5 A combination of variables from the model types were best for richness or abundance overall, 13 of 18 guilds (richness and abundance and 16 of 22 species analyzed. Five of 10 farming practice variables (including herbicide use, organic farm type and 9 of 13 habitat variables (including hedgerow length, proportion of hay were significant in best models. Risk modeling indicated that herbicide use could decrease primary grassland birds by one species (35% decline from 3.4 to 2.3 species per site. Organic farming could benefit species of conservation concern by 49% (an increase from 7.6 to 11.4 grassland birds. An
Petit, L.J.; Petit, D.R.; Christian, D.G.; Powell, Hugo D.W.
Only a small proportion of land can realistically be protected as nature reserves and thus conservation efforts also must focus on the ecological value of agroecosystems and developed areas surrounding nature reserves. In this study, avian communities were surveyed in 11 habitat types in central Panama, across a gradient from extensive forest to intensive agricultural land uses, to examine patterns of species richness and abundance and community composition. Wooded habitats, including extensive and fragmented forests, shade coffee plantations, and residential areas supported the most species and individuals. Nearctic-Neotropical migratory species were most numerous in lowland forest fragments, shade coffee, and residential areas. Introduced Pinus caribbea and sugar cane plantations supported the fewest species compared to all other habitats. Cattle pastures left fallow for less than two years supported more than twice as many total species as actively grazed pastures, such that species richness in fallow pastures was similar to that found in wooded habitats. Community similarities were relatively low among all habitat types (none exceeding the observed 65% similarity between extensive and fragmented lowland forests), but communities in shade coffee and residential areas were 43% and 54% similar to lowland forest fragments, respectively. Fallow pastures and residential areas shared 60% of their species. Bird communities in shade coffee and residential areas were characterized by higher proportions of frugivorous and nectarivorous species than in native forests. These same guilds also were better represented in fallow than in grazed pastures. Raptors and piscivorous species were most prevalent in cattle pastures and rice fields. These results, though based upon only species richness and abundance, demonstrate that many human-altered habitats have potential ecological value for birds, and conservation efforts in tropical areas should focus greater attention on
Jeffrey V. Wells; Daniel K. Niven; John Cecil
The Important Bird Area (IBA) program is an international effort to identify, conserve, and monitor a network of sites that provide essential habitat for bird populations. BirdLife International began the IBA program in Europe in 1985. Since that time, BirdLife partners in more than 100 countries have joined together to build the global IBA network. Audubon (BirdLife...
Altman, Bob; Hagar, Joan
This document (hereafter Guide) has been prepared to assist land managers interested in conducting conservation and management activities to benefit breeding birds associated with young conifer forests in the Pacific Northwest. Audiences targeted for use of the Guide include land trusts, watershed councils, non-commercial private land owners, forest products companies, land-managing conservation organizations, government agencies, tribes, and First Nations. We hope the Guide will be a useful and valuable tool to support any of the variety of reasons to manage for bird habitat in young conifer forests (for example, regulatory, biodiversity, bird conservation, and forest certification standards).
Sprague, Terry; Harrington, M. Elizabeth; Krogh, Carmen M. E.
Bird kill rate and disruption of habitat has been reported when industrial wind turbines are introduced into migratory bird paths or other environments. While the literature could be more complete regarding the documentation of negative effects on birds and bird habitats during the planning, construction, and operation of wind power projects,…
Khimoun, Aurélie; Eraud, Cyril; Ollivier, Anthony; Arnoux, Emilie; Rocheteau, Vincent; Bely, Marine; Lefol, Emilie; Delpuech, Martin; Carpentier, Marie-Laure; Leblond, Gilles; Levesque, Anthony; Charbonnel, Anaïs; Faivre, Bruno; Garnier, Stéphane
Habitat fragmentation is one of the most severe threats to biodiversity as it may lead to changes in population genetic structure, with ultimate modifications of species evolutionary potential and local extinctions. Nonetheless, fragmentation does not equally affect all species and identifying which ecological traits are related to species sensitivity to habitat fragmentation could help prioritization of conservation efforts. Despite the theoretical link between species ecology and extinction proneness, comparative studies explicitly testing the hypothesis that particular ecological traits underlies species-specific population structure are rare. Here, we used a comparative approach on eight bird species, co-occurring across the same fragmented landscape. For each species, we quantified relative levels of forest specialization and genetic differentiation among populations. To test the link between forest specialization and susceptibility to forest fragmentation, we assessed species responses to fragmentation by comparing levels of genetic differentiation between continuous and fragmented forest landscapes. Our results revealed a significant and substantial population structure at a very small spatial scale for mobile organisms such as birds. More importantly, we found that specialist species are more affected by forest fragmentation than generalist ones. Finally, our results suggest that even a simple habitat specialization index can be a satisfying predictor of genetic and demographic consequences of habitat fragmentation, providing a reliable practical and quantitative tool for conservation biology. © 2016 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.
Deborah M. Finch
Bird-habitat relationships along a riparian gradient in southeastern Wyoming were examined from 1982 to 1984. Breeding birds were spot-mapped on ten study grids established over an elevational cline of 933 m. Habitat analyses indicated significant trends of decreasing vegetational complexity from low to high elevations, with declines in number of habitat layers, and...
Established in 2009, the Green Energy Act aims to increase the use of renewable energy sources including wind, water, solar and bioenergy in Ontario. The development of these resources is a major component of the province's plan, which aims to mitigate the contribution to climate change and to involve the Ontario's economy in the improvement of the quality of the environment. The Green Energy Act also considers as important the implementation of a coordinated provincial approval process, suggesting the integration of all Ministry requirements into a unique process during the evaluation of newly proposed renewable energy projects. The Ministry of the Environment's Renewable Energy Approval Regulation details the requirements for wind power projects involving significant natural features. Birds are an important part of Ontario's biodiversity and, according to the Ministry of Natural Resources, their habitats are considered as significant wildlife habitat (SWH). The Renewable Energy Approval Regulation and this guideline are meant to provide elements and guidance in order to protect bird SWH during the selection of a location of wind power facilities. . 27 refs., 1 tab., 2 figs.
Chandler, R.B.; King, D.I.; DeStefano, S.
Most scrub-shrub bird species are declining in the northeastern United States, and these declines are largely attributed to regional declines in habitat availability. American Beaver (Castor canadensis; hereafter “beaver”) populations have been increasing in the Northeast in recent decades, and beavers create scrub-shrub habitat through their dam-building and foraging activities. Few systematic studies have been conducted on the value of beaver-modified habitats for scrub-shrub birds, and these data are important for understanding habitat selection of scrub-shrub birds as well as for assessing regional habitat availability for these species. We conducted surveys in 37 beaver meadows in a 2,800-km2 study area in western Massachusetts during 2005 and 2006 to determine the extent to which these beaver-modified habitats are used by scrub-shrub birds, as well as the characteristics of beaver meadows most closely related to bird use. We modeled bird abundance in relation to microhabitat-, patch-, and landscape-context variables while adjusting for survey-specific covariates affecting detectability using N-mixture models. We found that scrub-shrub birds of regional conservation concern occupied these sites and that birds responded differently to microhabitat, patch, and landscape characteristics of beaver meadows. Generally, scrub-shrub birds increased in abundance along a gradient of increasing vegetation complexity, and three species were positively related to patch size. We conclude that these habitats can potentially play an important role in regional conservation of scrub-shrub birds and recommend that conservation priority be given to larger beaver meadows with diverse vegetation structure and composition.
Study conducted in the forested bitumen belt of Ode-Irele, Ondo state, Nigeria evaluated habitat use by birds using 20- minutes birds point count to a radius of 30 meters, carried out in six selected habitats. The vegetation cover was sampled using 5x5-meters and 1m2quadrants. Data collected were subjected to t-test of ...
Petit, L.J.; Petit, D.R.
Development of effective conservation plans for terrestrial animals will require some assessment of which human-modified and natural habitats can support populations of priority species. We examined bird communities associated with 11 natural and human-modified habitats in Panama and assessed the importance of those habitats for species of different vulnerability to disturbance. We calculated habitat importance scores using both relative habitat preferences and vulnerability scores for all species present. Species of moderate and high vulnerability were primarily those categorized as forest specialists or forest generalists. As expected, even species-rich nonforest habitats provided little conservation value for the most vulnerable species. However, shaded coffee plantations and gallery forest corridors were modified habitats with relatively high conservation value. Sugar cane fields and Caribbean pine plantations offered virtually no conservation value for birds. Our method of assessing the conservation importance of different habitats is useful because it considers the types of species present and the potential role of the habitat in the conservation of those species (i.e., habitat preference). This method of habitat evaluation could be tailored to other conservation contexts with any measure of species vulnerability desired.
Anderson, Michael G.; Alisauskas, Ray T.; Batt, Bruce D. J.; Blohm, Robert J.; Higgins, Kenneth F.; Perry, Matthew; Ringelman, James K.; Sedinger, James S.; Serie, Jerome R.; Sharp, David E.; Trauger, David L.; Williams, Christopher K.
In the final decades of the nineteenth century, concern was building about the status of migratory bird populations in North America. In this literature review, we describe how that concern led to a landmark conservation agreement in 1916, between the United States and Great Britain (on behalf of Canada) to conserve migratory birds shared by Canada and the United States. Drawing on published literature and our personal experience, we describe how subsequent enabling acts in both countries gave rise to efforts to better estimate population sizes and distributions, assess harvest rates and demographic impacts, design and fund landscape-level habitat conservation initiatives, and organize necessary political and regulatory processes. Executing these steps required large-scale thinking, unprecedented regional and international cooperation, ingenuity, and a commitment to scientific rigor and adaptive management. We applaud the conservation efforts begun 100 years ago with the Migratory Bird Treaty Convention. The agreement helped build the field of wildlife ecology and conservation in the twentieth century but only partially prepares us for the ecological and social challenges ahead.
Michael S. W. Bradstreet
It is my pleasure, as Executive Director of Bird Studies Canada (BSC), to take part in the opening ceremonies of the Second International Symposium: Biology and Conservation of Owls of the Northern Hemisphere. It is entirely appropriate that this symposium should take place in one of the colder cities in the Northern Hemisphere, in mid-winter, and it is fitting that...
Using habitat stratification, birds were surveyed along transects in tidal and supralittoral sub-habitats using DISTANCE sampling protocol, and along the river by encounter rates to determine abundance and species richness. Indices of human activity as well as habitat structure parameters including ground cover, plant ...
Full Text Available Bird migration has attracted an increasing attention. The study of habitats has played a vital role in the birds migratory. Previous researches, however, have encountered many problems, such as great limitations on research methods, low data utilization rate, statistics-focused and ineffective data processing and analysis methods. In this paper, the algorithm of habitat discovery is put forward by using computer’s data-mining technology based on the spatio-temporal characteristics of bird-watching data. First the algorithm detects and eliminates duplicate data to guarantee data standardization. Then density-based clustering algorithms are used to identify habitats where birds gathered. Finally the habitats of birds migratory are discovered.
Rory N. Sandberg
Full Text Available Fynbos habitats are threatened by fragmentation through land use and anthropogenic changes in fire regimes, leading to a loss of suitable habitat for birds. We investigated the response of fynbos-typical avifauna to fragmentation and postfire vegetation age in order to better understand the consequences of these processes for bird communities. Vegetation composition and bird inventory data were collected along wandering transects in three South Outeniqua Sandstone Fynbos habitat configurations: fragmented patches (associated with anthropogenically driven habitat loss < 150 years ago, naturally isolated fynbos islands (formed through climate-driven forest expansion in the Holocene and extensive areas of relatively pristine habitat known as ‘mainland’. The latter configurations served as references against which to investigate bird and vegetation responses to more recent habitat fragmentation. Linear regressions were used to compare the relationships of a number of bird and plant species to areas between each habitat configuration. Bird attribute frequency data were compared between habitat configurations using chi-square tests. Birds and plants showed significant species–area relationships in natural island and mainland sites, but no such relationship occurred in artificial fragments for birds, where the surrounding anthropogenic land uses are likely to have contributed generalist or colonist species. Avifaunal migratory groups were not affected by isolation distances of > 10 km in this study and their frequencies were the same across the three habitat configurations. Certain feeding guilds did, however, respond to postfire vegetation age, with nectarivore species twice as likely to occur in oldgrowth mainland fynbos. Fragmentation can alter fire disturbance regimes, which in turn alter the availability of resources in a habitat, so the impacts of fragmentation on birds are probably indirect through changes in the vegetation component.Conservation
McLaren, James D.; Buler, Jeffrey J.; Schreckengost, Tim; Smolinsky, Jaclyn A.; Boone, Matthew; van Loon, E. Emiel; Dawson, Deanna K.; Walters, Eric L.
With many of the world's migratory bird populations in alarming decline, broad-scale assessments of responses to migratory hazards may prove crucial to successful conservation efforts. Most birds migrate at night through increasingly light-polluted skies. Bright light sources can attract airborne migrants and lead to collisions with structures, but might also influence selection of migratory stopover habitat and thereby acquisition of food resources. We demonstrate, using multi-year weather radar measurements of nocturnal migrants across the northeastern U.S., that autumnal migrant stopover density increased at regional scales with proximity to the brightest areas, but decreased within a few kilometers of brightly-lit sources. This finding implies broad-scale attraction to artificial light while airborne, impeding selection for extensive forest habitat. Given that high-quality stopover habitat is critical to successful migration, and hindrances during migration can decrease fitness, artificial lights present a potentially heightened conservation concern for migratory bird populations.
Roxanne Bogart; Chris Eberly; Elizabeth Martin
In working towards a vision of integrated bird conservation, scientists, conservationists, land managers, and administrators are faced with a variety of scientific, managerial, administrative, and logistical challenges and complexities. The broad scope of integrated bird conservation requires organizations to work together to conserve birds across taxonomic groups,...
... INTERIOR Fish and Wildlife Service RIN 0648-XV36 Stanford University Habitat Conservation Plan AGENCIES... University Habitat Conservation Plan (Plan), the Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS) for...
Banko, Paul C.; David, Reginald E.; Jacobi, James D.; Banko, Winston E.
of birds initially increase slowly even when habitat conditions are favorable. Consequently, even as habitat conditions begin to improve, small populations may disappear unless they are supplemented directly. Hawaiian bird conservation is also affected by social and legal factors, including hunting alien game species, commercial land use practices, and lawsuits and policies concerning endangered species and critical habitat. Influenced by this mixture of conflicting and competing issues, Hawaiian bird recovery programs range from management of single species and some components of their habitats to limited forms of community or ecosystem management. Although the effectiveness of most programs is difficult to evaluate because of monitoring limitations, several programs exemplify species and community management. Programs primarily intended to recover single species include Hawaiian Goose or Nene (Branta sandvicensis), Hawaiian Crow or ‘Alala (Corvus hawaiiensis), and Palila (Loxioides bailleui). Programs attempting to manage entire communities of forest birds include Hakalau Forest National Wildlife Refuge and Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park on Hawai‘i, and Waikamoi Preserve, Hanawi Natural Area Reserve, and Haleakala National Park on Maui.
Scott H. Stoleson
Many birds that are experiencing population declines require extensive tracts of mature forest habitat for breeding. Recent work suggests that at least some may shift their habitat use to early-successional areas after nesting but before migration. I used constant-effort mist netting in regenerating clearcuts (4-8 years postcut) and dense mature-forest understories to...
Gauthreaux, Sidney, A.; Steven J. Wagner.
Gauthreaux, Sidney, A., and Steven J. Wagner. 2005. Breeding bird populations and habitat associations within the Savannah River Site (SRS). Final Report. USDA Forest Service, Savannah River, Aiken, SC. 48 pp. Abstract: During the 1970's and 1980's a dramatic decline occurred in the populations of Neotropical migratory birds, species that breed in North America and winter south of the border in Central and South America and in the Caribbean. In 1991 an international initiative was mounted by U. S. governmental land management agencies, nongovernmental conservation agencies, and the academic and lay ornithological communities to understand the decline of Neotropical migratory birds in the Americas. In cooperation with the USDA Forest Service - Savannah River (FS - SR) we began 1992 a project directed to monitoring population densities of breeding birds using the Breeding Bird Census (BBC) methodology in selected habitats within the Savannah River Site SRS. In addition we related point count data on the occurrence of breeding Neotropical migrants and other bird species to the habitat data gathered by the Forest Inventory and Analysis (FIA) program of the USDA Forest Service and data on habitat treatments within forest stands.
Ramírez-Albores, Jorge E
Knowledge of the composition of the bird community in Alto Balsas (southwestern Puebla, Central Mexico) is needed for management programs aiming at protection and conservation of bird species and their habitats I studied sites with tropical deciduous forest. Data were obtained during 1666 hours of field work in 238 days from March 1998 to September 2000. Six permanent transect (3.5 km long and 100 m wide; 30 to 40 ha in each transect) were used to determine species richness in the study sites. The Shannon-Wiener diversity index was calculated for each site and Sorensen's index was used to assess similarity between sites. One-way analysis of variance was used to test for differences between sites in species richness and diversity values. A total of 128 species were recorded, Tepexco (n=75, H' = 3.76) and Puente Márquez (n=61, H' = 3.62) were the sites that showed the greatest specific richness and diversity. However, species richness and diversity seasonally patterns were similar among sites (ANOVA p > 0.05), with highest diversity during the rainy season. Most species were resident; 42 were migrants. The avifauna was represented by 30 species associated with tropical deciduous forest and 12 from open habitats or heavily altered habitats. Insectivores were the best represented trophic category, followed by carnivores and omnivores.
...-1231-9BPP] RIN 1018-AX53 Migratory Birds; Draft Eagle Conservation Plan Guidance AGENCY: Fish and... mail to: Attention: Eagle Conservation Plan Guidance; Division of Migratory Bird Management; U.S. Fish... implementing statutes including the Bald and Golden Eagle Protection Act (BGEPA), the Migratory Bird Treaty Act...
Hill, Jason M.; Egan, J. Franklin; Stauffer, Glenn E.; Diefenbach, Duane R.
Grassland bird species have experienced substantial declines in North America. These declines have been largely attributed to habitat loss and degradation, especially from agricultural practices and intensification (the habitat-availability hypothesis). A recent analysis of North American Breeding Bird Survey (BBS) “grassland breeding” bird trends reported the surprising conclusion that insecticide acute toxicity was a better correlate of grassland bird declines in North America from 1980–2003 (the insecticide-acute-toxicity hypothesis) than was habitat loss through agricultural intensification. In this paper we reached the opposite conclusion. We used an alternative statistical approach with additional habitat covariates to analyze the same grassland bird trends over the same time frame. Grassland bird trends were positively associated with increases in area of Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) lands and cropland used as pasture, whereas the effect of insecticide acute toxicity on bird trends was uncertain. Our models suggested that acute insecticide risk potentially has a detrimental effect on grassland bird trends, but models representing the habitat-availability hypothesis were 1.3–21.0 times better supported than models representing the insecticide-acute-toxicity hypothesis. Based on point estimates of effect sizes, CRP area and agricultural intensification had approximately 3.6 and 1.6 times more effect on grassland bird trends than lethal insecticide risk, respectively. Our findings suggest that preserving remaining grasslands is crucial to conserving grassland bird populations. The amount of grassland that has been lost in North America since 1980 is well documented, continuing, and staggering whereas insecticide use greatly declined prior to the 1990s. Grassland birds will likely benefit from the de-intensification of agricultural practices and the interspersion of pastures, Conservation Reserve Program lands, rangelands and other grassland
Full Text Available The aim of this book is to give a holistic setting to the conservation of plants and animals. Instead of concentrating on species alone, the aim is to spread the concern to the physical and biological features; including humanity that make up...
J. E. C. Figueira
Full Text Available Analysis of a three-year bird survey in the pantanal of Poconé revealed that most of the resident and seasonal birds are habitat generalists, using two or more habitats. In this study, previously sampled habitats were ranked in relation to species richness and stability (as measured by the ratio of seasonal to resident species. In all, nine habitats were grouped into three categories; results are as follows: 1 forests: more species-rich and more stable; 2 cerrado: intermediate levels; and 3 aquatic: less species-rich and less stable. The number of seasonal species remained relatively constant in forests throughout the year, while increasing in the other habitats during the dry season. The abundance of resident species seems to be related to species use of multiple habitats. Although many species were found to be habitat generalists, we discuss possible consequences of habitat loss and other human impacts on efforts to conserve this important bird community.
Knick, Steven T.; Dobkin, David S.; Rotenberry, John T.; Schroeder, Michael A.; Vander Haegen, W. Matthew; van Riper, Charles
Degradation, fragmentation, and loss of native sagebrush (Artemisia spp.) landscapes have imperiled these habitats and their associated avifauna. Historically, this vast piece of the Western landscape has been undervalued: even though more than 70% of all remaining sagebrush habitat in the United States is publicly owned, <3% of it is protected as federal reserves or national parks. We review the threats facing birds in sagebrush habitats to emphasize the urgency for conservation and research actions, and synthesize existing information that forms the foundation for recommended research directions. Management and conservation of birds in sagebrush habitats will require more research into four major topics: (1) identification of primary land-use practices and their influence on sagebrush habitats and birds, (2) better understanding of bird responses to habitat components and disturbance processes of sagebrush ecosystems, (3) improved hierarchical designs for surveying and monitoring programs, and (4) linking bird movements and population changes during migration and wintering periods to dynamics on the sagebrush breeding grounds. This research is essential because we already have seen that sagebrush habitats can be altered by land use, spread of invasive plants, and disrupted disturbance regimes beyond a threshold at which natural recovery is unlikely. Research on these issues should be instituted on lands managed by state or federal agencies because most lands still dominated by sagebrush are owned publicly. In addition to the challenge of understanding shrubsteppe bird-habitat dynamics, conservation of sagebrush landscapes depends on our ability to recognize and communicate their intrinsic value and on our resolve to conserve them.
Dawson, D.K.; Robbins, C.S.; Sauer, J.R.
We used mist nets and point counts to sample bird populations in 61 sites in Belize during January-March of 1987-1991. Sites were classified as forest, second growth, woody agricultural crops (citrus, mango, cacao, and cashew), or non-woody agricultural crops (rice and sugar cane). We evaluated patterns of occurence of wintering temperate migrant bird species in these habitats. Mist net captures of 22 of 31 migrant species differed significantly among habitats. Of these, 13 species were captured more frequently in the agricultural habitats. American Redstart (Setophaga ruticilla), Black-and-white Warbler (Mniotilta varia), and Magnolia Warbler (Dendroica magnolia) were among the species captured most frequently in woody agricultural habitats; captures of Common Yellowthroat (Geothlypis trichas), Indigo Bunting (Passerina cyanea), and Northern (lcterus galbula) and Orchard orioles (I. spur/anus) were highest in the non-woody agricultural sites. We relate these occurrence patterns to trends in breeding populations in North America. While count data provide a wide picture of winter habitat distribution of migrants, more intensive work is necessary to assess temporal and geographic variation of migrant bird use of agricultural habitats.
...] Habitat Conservation Plan/Natural Community Conservation Plan for Yolo County, CA: Environmental Impact... coordination with the Yolo County Habitat Conservation Plan/Natural Community Conservation Plan Joint Powers... Yolo County Natural Heritage Program Habitat Conservation Plan/Natural Community Conservation Plan...
W. David Shuford
Full Text Available http://escholarship.org/uc/item/63j6s1tbPopulations of many species of birds are declining worldwide from habitat loss and degradation and the effects of contamination, disease, and alien species. Effects have been great in California’s Central Valley from the loss of over 90% of its historical wetland and riparian habitats. Conservation initiatives at various geographic scales have ranged from protecting and restoring habitats or ecosystems for broad suites of species to ones identifying individual declining and vulnerable taxa and spurring actions to halt or reverse their population declines. In taking the first approach, the Central Valley Joint Venture initially focused on restoring habitats and populations of wintering and breeding waterfowl but currently promotes the conservation of all birds. This joint venture is setting population and habitat objectives for seven taxonomic or habitat bird groups, but to date little attention has been paid to at-risk species of particular conservation concern. We identified 38 at-risk species, subspecies, or distinct populations of birds that warrant heightened conservation efforts in the Central Valley. At-risk birds are unevenly distributed among subregions and habitat types in this valley, but most face the primary threat of habitat loss and degradation. The treatment of at-risk species varies greatly among the seven bird groups considered by the joint venture, and, overall, conservation objectives are not addressed specifically for 50% of the region’s at-risk taxa, though some surely benefit from objectives set for other groups. To adequately treat at-risk species, we recommend a framework for setting conservation objectives that evaluates assumptions about limiting factors, considers objectives already set for threatened and endangered species, assesses whether objectives set for other groups or focal species meet the needs of at-risk species lacking such objectives, establishes objectives for
Full Text Available Understanding the spatial patterns in species richness is a central issue in macroecology and biogeography. Analyses that have traditionally focused on overall species richness limit the generality and depth of inference. Spatial patterns of species richness and the mechanisms that underpin them in China remain poorly documented. We created a database of the distribution of 580 mammal species and 849 resident bird species from 2376 counties in China and established spatial linear models to identify the determinants of species richness and test the roles of five hypotheses for overall mammals and resident birds and the 11 habitat groups among the two taxa. Our result showed that elevation variability was the most important determinant of species richness of overall mammal and bird species. It is indicated that the most prominent predictors of species richness varied among different habitat groups: elevation variability for forest and shrub mammals and birds, temperature annual range for grassland and desert mammals and wetland birds, net primary productivity for farmland mammals, maximum temperature of the warmest month for cave mammals, and precipitation of the driest quarter for grassland and desert birds. Noteworthily, main land cover type was also found to obviously influence mammal and bird species richness in forests, shrubs and wetlands under the disturbance of intensified human activities. Our findings revealed a substantial divergence in the species richness patterns among different habitat groups and highlighted the group-specific and disparate environmental associations that underpin them. As we demonstrate, a focus on overall species richness alone might lead to incomplete or misguided understanding of spatial patterns. Conservation priorities that consider a broad spectrum of habitat groups will be more successful in safeguarding the multiple services of biodiversity.
Berlanga, Humberto; Kennedy, Judith A.; Rich, Terrell D.; Arizmendi, Maria del Coro; Beardmore, Carol J.; Blancher, Peter J.; Butcher, Gregory S.; Couturier, Andrew R.; Dayer, Ashley A.; Demarest, Dean W.; Easton, Wendy E.; Gustafson, Mary; Iñigo-Elias, Eduardo E.; Krebs, Elizabeth A.; Panjabi, Arvind O.; Rodriguez Contreras, Vicente; Rosenberg, Kenneth V.; Ruth, Janet M.; Santana Castellon, Eduardo; Vidal, Rosa Ma.; Will, Tom
Landbirds are the most abundant and diverse group of birds in North America, with nearly 900 species distributed across every major terrestrial habitat. Birds are indicators of environmental health; their populations track changes in habitat, water, disease, and climate. They are providers of invaluable ecosystem services, such as pest control, seed dispersal, and pollination. As the focus of bird watching, they help generate billions of dollars for national economies. Yet, we are in danger of losing this spectacular and irreplaceable bird diversity: landbirds are experiencing significant declines, ominous threats, and shrinking habitats across a continent with growing human populations, increasing resource consumption, and changing climate. Saving Our Shared Birds presents for the first time a comprehensive conservation assessment of landbirds in Canada, Mexico, and the continental United States. This new tri-national vision encompasses the complete range of many migratory species and highlights the vital links among migrants and highly threatened resident species in Mexico. It points to a set of continent-scale actions necessary to maintain the landbird diversity and abundance that are our shared responsibility. This collaborative effort of Partners in Flight (PIF) is the next step in linking the countries of the Western Hemisphere to help species at risk and keep common birds common through voluntary partnerships—our mission since 1990. Saving Our Shared Birds builds upon PIF’s 2004 North American Landbird Conservation Plan, which presented science-based priorities for the conservation of 448 landbird species in Canada and the United States. Our three nations have expressed their commitment to cooperative conservation through numerous international treaties, agreements, and programs, including formation of the North American Bird Conservation Initiative (NABCI) a decade ago. The NABCI partnership recognizes that effective conservation requires a concerted
Smith, James A.; Deppe, Jill L.
Understanding bird migration and avian biodiversity is one of the most compelling and challenging problems of modern biology with major implications for human health and conservation biology. Migration and conservation efforts cross national boundaries and are subject to numerous international agreements and treaties presenting challenges in both geographic space and time. Space based technology, coupled with geographic information systems, yields new opportunities to shed light on the distribution and movement of organisms on the planet and their sensitivity to human disturbances and environmental changes. At NASA, we are creating ecological forecasting tools for science and application users to address the consequences of loss of wetlands, flooding, drought or other natural disasters such as hurricanes on avian biodiversity and bird migration. In our work, we use individual organism biophysical models and drive these models with satellite observations and numerical weather predictions of the spatio-temporal gradients in climate and habitat. Geographic information system technology comprises one component of our overall simulation framework, especially for characterizing the changing habitats and conditions encountered by en-route migratory birds. Simulation provides a tool for studying bird migration across multiple scales and can be linked to mechanistic processes describing the time and energy budget states of migrating birds. Such models yield an understanding of how a migratory flyway and its component habitats function as a whole and link stop-over ecology with biological conservation and management. We present examples of our simulation of shorebirds, principally, pectoral sandpipers, along the central flyways of the United States and Canada from the Gulf of Mexico to Alaska.
...] Meeting Announcements: North American Wetlands Conservation Council; Neotropical Migratory Bird... Conservation Act (NAWCA) grant proposals for recommendation to the Migratory Bird Conservation Commission (Commission). This meeting is open to the public. The Advisory Group for the Neotropical Migratory Bird...
Knutson, M.G.; Ribic, C.; Hohman, William
Melinda Knutson (USGS Upper Midwest Environmental Sciences Center) and Christine Ribic (USGS Wisconsin Cooperative Wildlife Research Unit) contributed to a recent report published by the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service. The report summarizes a workshop held 8 December 1999 in Chicago, IL. Highlights of the report include resources and land management recommendations for riparian zones in the Midwest. The full report will soon be available at the USDA NRCS Wildlife Habitat Management Institute website: http://www.ms.nrcs.usda.gov/whmi/habitat.htm Knutson, M., and C. Ribic. 2000. Management of riparian habitat for mammals, birds, reptiles, and amphibians. Pages 22-24, Appendix C in W. Hohman, ed. NRCS Management and Restoration of Midwestern Riparian Systems Workshop Report. USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service, Chicago, IL.
Girma, Zerihun; Mamo, Yosef; Mengesha, Girma; Verma, Ashok; Asfaw, Tsyon
The habitat use and seasonal migratory pattern of birds in Ethiopia is less explored as compared to diversity studies. To this end, this study aimed at investigating the patterns of distribution related to seasonality and the effect of habitat characteristics (elevation, slope, and average vegetation height) on habitat use of birds of Wondo Genet Forest Patch. A stratified random sampling design was used to assess the avian fauna across the four dominant habitat types found in the study area: natural forest, wooded grassland, grassland, and agroforestry land. A point transect count was employed to investigate avian species richness and abundance per habitat type per season. Ancillary data, such as elevation above sea level, latitude and longitude, average vegetation height, and percent slope inclination, were recorded with a GPS and clinometers per plot. A total of 33 migratory bird species were recorded from the area, of which 20 species were northern (Palearctic) migrants while 13 were inter-African migrants. There was a significant difference in the mean abundance of migratory bird species between dry and wet seasons ( t = 2.13, p = .038, df = 44). The variation in mean abundance per plot between the dry and wet seasons in the grassland habitat was significant ( t = 2.35, p = .051, df = 7). In most habitat types during both dry and wet seasons, omnivore birds were the most abundant. While slope was a good predictor for bird species abundance in the dry season, altitude and average vegetation height accounted more in the wet season. The patch of forest and its surrounding is an important bird area for migratory, endemic, and global threatened species. Hence, it is conservation priority area, and the study suggests that conservation coupled with ecotourism development is needed for its sustainability.
Robert J. Craig
Full Text Available I examined lists of endangered species from northeastern and midwestern United States to assess the extent to which they were dominated by species considered rare due to their vulnerability to anthropogenic stressors or, instead, by species whose rarity might be explained otherwise. Northeastern states had longer species lists than midwestern states, and more species associated with locally rare prairie habitats. More species at the edge of their geographic range appeared on lists from the Northeast than the Midwest. About 70% of listed species overall have shown either no significant population trend, or increases, at the continental scale, but wetland and prairie species were frequently listed, consistent with the generally acknowledged, widespread loss of these habitats. Curiously, midwestern states tended to list fewer forest species, despite evidence that forest fragmentation there has had strongly deleterious effects on regional bird populations. Overall, species appear to be listed locally for a variety of reasons not necessarily related to their risk of extinction generally, potentially contributing to inefficient distributions of limited resources to deal effectively with species that legitimately require conservation attention. I advocate a continental perspective when listing species locally, and propose enhanced criteria for characterizing species as endangered at the local level.
In 1993, Congress passed Public Law 103-64, which established the Snake River Birds of Prey National Conservation Area (NCA) for the purpose of conserving, protecting, and enhancing raptor populations and habitats. The NCA encompasses over 485,000 acres of public land along 130 km of the Snake River in southwest Idaho, and is located within a 30-minute drive of Boise...
Crosby, Andrew D.; Elmore, R.D.; Leslie,, David M.; Will, Rodney E.
Changes in land use and land cover throughout the eastern half of North America have caused substantial declines in populations of birds that rely on grassland and shrubland vegetation types, including socially and economically important game birds such as the Northern Bobwhite (Colinus virginianus; hereafter bobwhites). As much attention is focused on habitat management and restoration for bobwhites, they may act as an umbrella species for other bird species with similar habitat requirements. We quantified the relationship of bobwhites to the overall bird community and evaluated the potential for bobwhites to act as an umbrella species for grassland and shrubland birds. We monitored bobwhite presence and bird community composition within 31 sample units on selected private lands in the south-central United States from 2009 to 2011. Bobwhites were strongly associated with other grassland and shrubland birds and were a significant positive predictor for 9 species. Seven of these, including Bell's Vireo (Vireo bell), Dicksissel (Spiza americana), and Grasshopper Sparrow (Ammodramus savannarum), are listed as species of conservation concern. Species richness and occupancy probability of grassland and shrubland birds were higher relative to the overall bird community in sample units occupied by bobwhites. Our results show that bobwhites can act as an umbrella species for grassland and shrubland birds, although the specific species in any given situation will depend on region and management objectives. These results suggest that efficiency in conservation funding can be increased by using public interest in popular game species to leverage resources to meet multiple conservation objectives.
Rafael A. Dias
Full Text Available Nearly all remnants of temperate grasslands in southeastern South America are used for livestock ranching and are subject to habitat degradation resulting from this activity. Exploring how habitat features affect the composition of grassland avifaunal communities is a first step to understand how current cattle-ranching management practices impact avian diversity. We used canonical ordination to test for relationships between five habitat variables and the composition of the bird community in coastal grasslands in southern Brazil. We sampled pastures with different heights, from overgrazed short-grass to tall herbaceous vegetation. We recorded 1,535 individuals and 27 species of birds. The first ordination axis indicated a strong contribution of mean vegetation height on the composition of the bird community, whereas the second axis revealed the influence of herbaceous vegetation patchiness and woody vegetation cover. Three groups of species were revealed by the ordination: one more diffuse associated with intermediate and tall herbaceous vegetation, another with short grass, and a third with vegetation patchiness and woody vegetation. Species restricted to tall herbaceous vegetation are negatively impacted from habitat degradation resulting from overgrazing and trampling by livestock, and mowing and burning of tall plants. Occurrence of these species in our study area is related with the presence of swales immediately behind the dune system and where remnants of tall vegetation persist. Birds of pastures with ample cover of short herbaceous plants, including one globally threatened species and six other restricted to short-grass habitat, apparently benefit from local livestock management practices. Woody vegetation possibly functions as a keystone structure, enabling the occurrence in grasslands of avian species that rely on shrubby habitat. Although livestock ranching promotes the diversity of habitats by creating distinct patches of
Prakash Kumar Paudel
Full Text Available Understanding diversity patterns along altitudinal gradients, and their underlying causes are important for conserving biodiversity. Previous studies have focused on climatic, energetic, and geographic variables (e.g., mid-domain effects, with less attention paid to human-induced habitat modifications. We used published data of bird distributions along an elevational gradient (0–4900 m in the Nepalese Himalaya and interpolated species presence between elevational limits. The relationship between species richness and environmental variables was analyzed using generalized linear models. A low plateau relationship between bird richness and elevation was observed, with a main peak at intermediate elevations (2800 m. Across the total gradient, interpolated bird species richness had a unimodal relationship to maximum monthly precipitation and a linear response to seasonal variation in temperature, proportion of forest cover, and proportion of protected area. In lower elevations (0–2800 m, interpolated species richness had a positive and linear response to the proportion of Ramsar sites and a unimodal response to habitat heterogeneity. At higher elevations (2900–4900 m, interpolated bird richness had a positive linear response to monthly variation in temperature and a negative linear response to proportion forest cover. We conclude that factors related to human management are important drivers of elevational gradients in bird species richness. Keywords: Elevational gradient, Biogeography, Bird species richness, Conservation, Himalaya, Nepal
J. Dananjaya Kottawa-Arachchi
Full Text Available A survey on birds was conducted at St. Coombs Tea Estate, Talawakelle, Sri Lanka with the objective of assessing the avifaunal diversity of a given tea plantation ecosystem. Bird populations were sampled in man-made habitats such as home garden, wetland, tea plantation, Eucalyptus plantation and small scale reservoir. Hundred-and-twenty counts were made for each habitat and in addition, activities of birds, feeding habits and food recourses were also observed. A total of 87 species, including 11 endemic and 11 migrant species of birds, was recorded, which included one globally threatened species, Kashmir Flycatcher Ficedula subrubra and 16 nationally threatened species. A majority of the bird species were observed in home gardens (75%, followed by reservoirs (57%, wetlands (48%, tea plantations (43% and in Eucalyptus plantations (23%. Home gardens support bird diversity while the species richness of endemic bird species increases thereby enabling these findings to be used as guidelines in long term conservational practices. Several conservation measures such as increasing plant diversity, introduction of shade trees and prevention of fire are recommended to conserve and enhance avifaunal diversity in tea plantations.
Drum, Ryan G.; Ribic, Christine; Koch, Katie; Lonsdorf, Eric V.; Grant, Edward C.; Ahlering, Marissa; Barnhill, Laurel; Dailey, Thomas; Lor, Socheata; Mueller, Connie; Pavlacky, D.C.; Rideout, Catherine; Sample, David W.
Grassland bird habitat has declined substantially in the United States. Remaining grasslands are increasingly fragmented, mostly privately owned, and vary greatly in terms of habitat quality and protection status. A coordinated strategic response for grassland bird conservation is difficult, largely due to the scope and complexity of the problem, further compounded by biological, sociological, and economic uncertainties. We describe the results from a collaborative Structured Decision Making (SDM) workshop focused on linking social and economic drivers of landscape change to grassland bird population outcomes. We identified and evaluated alternative strategies for grassland bird conservation using a series of rapid prototype models. We modeled change in grassland and agriculture cover in hypothetical landscapes resulting from different landowner decisions in response to alternative socio-economic conservation policy decisions. Resulting changes in land cover at all three stages of the annual cycle (breeding, wintering, and migration) were used to estimate changes in grassland bird populations. Our results suggest that successful grassland bird conservation may depend upon linkages with ecosystem services on working agricultural lands and grassland-based marketing campaigns to engage the public. With further development, spatial models that link landowner decisions with biological outcomes can be essential tools for making conservation policy decisions. A coordinated non-traditional partnership will likely be necessary to clearly understand and systematically respond to the many conservation challenges facing grassland birds.
Drum, Ryan G.; Ribic, Christine A.; Koch, Katie; Lonsdorf, Eric; Grant, Evan; Ahlering, Marissa; Barnhill, Laurel; Dailey, Thomas; Lor, Socheata; Mueller, Connie; Pavlacky, David C.; Rideout, Catherine; Sample, David
Grassland bird habitat has declined substantially in the United States. Remaining grasslands are increasingly fragmented, mostly privately owned, and vary greatly in terms of habitat quality and protection status. A coordinated strategic response for grassland bird conservation is difficult, largely due to the scope and complexity of the problem, further compounded by biological, sociological, and economic uncertainties. We describe the results from a collaborative Structured Decision Making (SDM) workshop focused on linking social and economic drivers of landscape change to grassland bird population outcomes. We identified and evaluated alternative strategies for grassland bird conservation using a series of rapid prototype models. We modeled change in grassland and agriculture cover in hypothetical landscapes resulting from different landowner decisions in response to alternative socio-economic conservation policy decisions. Resulting changes in land cover at all three stages of the annual cycle (breeding, wintering, and migration) were used to estimate changes in grassland bird populations. Our results suggest that successful grassland bird conservation may depend upon linkages with ecosystem services on working agricultural lands and grassland-based marketing campaigns to engage the public. With further development, spatial models that link landowner decisions with biological outcomes can be essential tools for making conservation policy decisions. A coordinated non-traditional partnership will likely be necessary to clearly understand and systematically respond to the many conservation challenges facing grassland birds. PMID:26569108
Drum, Ryan G; Ribic, Christine A; Koch, Katie; Lonsdorf, Eric; Grant, Evan; Ahlering, Marissa; Barnhill, Laurel; Dailey, Thomas; Lor, Socheata; Mueller, Connie; Pavlacky, David C; Rideout, Catherine; Sample, David
Grassland bird habitat has declined substantially in the United States. Remaining grasslands are increasingly fragmented, mostly privately owned, and vary greatly in terms of habitat quality and protection status. A coordinated strategic response for grassland bird conservation is difficult, largely due to the scope and complexity of the problem, further compounded by biological, sociological, and economic uncertainties. We describe the results from a collaborative Structured Decision Making (SDM) workshop focused on linking social and economic drivers of landscape change to grassland bird population outcomes. We identified and evaluated alternative strategies for grassland bird conservation using a series of rapid prototype models. We modeled change in grassland and agriculture cover in hypothetical landscapes resulting from different landowner decisions in response to alternative socio-economic conservation policy decisions. Resulting changes in land cover at all three stages of the annual cycle (breeding, wintering, and migration) were used to estimate changes in grassland bird populations. Our results suggest that successful grassland bird conservation may depend upon linkages with ecosystem services on working agricultural lands and grassland-based marketing campaigns to engage the public. With further development, spatial models that link landowner decisions with biological outcomes can be essential tools for making conservation policy decisions. A coordinated non-traditional partnership will likely be necessary to clearly understand and systematically respond to the many conservation challenges facing grassland birds.
Ryan G Drum
Full Text Available Grassland bird habitat has declined substantially in the United States. Remaining grasslands are increasingly fragmented, mostly privately owned, and vary greatly in terms of habitat quality and protection status. A coordinated strategic response for grassland bird conservation is difficult, largely due to the scope and complexity of the problem, further compounded by biological, sociological, and economic uncertainties. We describe the results from a collaborative Structured Decision Making (SDM workshop focused on linking social and economic drivers of landscape change to grassland bird population outcomes. We identified and evaluated alternative strategies for grassland bird conservation using a series of rapid prototype models. We modeled change in grassland and agriculture cover in hypothetical landscapes resulting from different landowner decisions in response to alternative socio-economic conservation policy decisions. Resulting changes in land cover at all three stages of the annual cycle (breeding, wintering, and migration were used to estimate changes in grassland bird populations. Our results suggest that successful grassland bird conservation may depend upon linkages with ecosystem services on working agricultural lands and grassland-based marketing campaigns to engage the public. With further development, spatial models that link landowner decisions with biological outcomes can be essential tools for making conservation policy decisions. A coordinated non-traditional partnership will likely be necessary to clearly understand and systematically respond to the many conservation challenges facing grassland birds.
Farfán, M.A.; Duarte, J.; Real, R.; Muñoz, A.R.; Fa, J.E.; Vargas, J.M.
Onshore wind farms remain one of the most widely used technologies for the production of renewable energy. These are known to affect birds through disturbance or collision. Most research focus on the impact of wind farms on raptors or other large bird species, especially those of conservation concern. However, limited information exists on the effect of wind farms on small birds. Recovery of large versus small bird populations impacted by wind farms is also largely unstudied. A reason for this is the lack of long-term datasets based on standardized, systematic assessments. We monitored birds in the vicinity of a wind farm in an upland habitat in southern Spain (Malaga province), immediately after installation and 6.5 years post-construction. During both study periods, we observed 11 raptor and 38 non-raptor species (including 30 passerines). We found differences in recovery rates between raptors and non-raptors. Raptors showed an upturn in numbers but non-raptor abundance fell significantly. Greater attention should be paid to the recovery of wildlife after initial impact assessments than at present. This study confirms that regulatory authorities and developers should consider the likely impacts of wind farms on small bird populations. Mitigation measures focused particularly on non-raptor species should be considered and implemented as a means to reduce these negative effects.
Laura P. Ponce-Calderón Ponce-Calderón; Dante A. Rodríguez-Trejo; Beatriz C. Aguilar-Váldez; Elvia. López-Pérez
To assess the impact of different-severity wildfires on bird habitat, habitat quality was determined by analyzing the degree of richness association, abundance and diversity of bird species and vegetation structure (richness, abundance, diversity and coverage). These attributes were quantified with four sampling sites for birds and five for quadrant-centered points...
Michael E. Akresh; David I. King; Robert T. Brooks
Shrubland birds have experienced widespread declines in the eastern United States. Habitat for shrubland birds is typically dynamic, in which available habitat changes temporally and spatially in response to disturbance and succession. Despite widespread concerns among conservationists about shrubland birds, much is still poorly understood regarding fundamental...
Colleen Cassady St. Clair
Full Text Available Forest fragmentation and habitat loss may disrupt the movement or dispersal of forest-dwelling birds. Despite much interest in the severity of these effects and ways of mitigating them, little is known about actual movement patterns in different habitat types. We studied the movement of wintering resident birds, lured by playbacks of mobbing calls, to compare the willingness of forest birds to travel various distances in continuous forest, along narrow corridors (fencerows, and across gaps in forest cover. We also quantified the willingness of Black-capped Chickadees (Poecile atricapillus to cross gaps when alternative forested detour routes were available. All species were less likely to respond to the calls as distance increased to 200 m, although White-breasted Nuthatches (Sitta carolinensis and Hairy Woodpeckers (Picoides villosus were generally less likely to respond than chickadees and Downy Woodpeckers (P. pubescens. Chickadees were as likely to travel in corridors as in continuous forest, but were less likely to cross gaps as the gap distance increased. The other species were less willing to travel in corridors and gaps relative to forest, and the differences among habitats also increased with distance. For chickadees, gap-crossing decisions in the presence of forested detours varied over the range of distances that we tested, and were primarily influenced by detour efficiency (the length of the shortcut relative to the available detour. Over short distances, birds used forested detours, regardless of their efficiency. As absolute distances increased, birds tended to employ larger shortcuts in the open when detour efficiency was low or initial distance in the open was high, but they limited their distance from the nearest forest edge to 25 m. Thus, chickadees were unwilling to cross gaps of > 50 m when they had forested alternatives, yet they sometimes crossed gaps as large as 200 m when no such choice existed. Our results suggest that
Edmund J. Zlonis
Full Text Available Human-induced effects on lowland conifer forests in hemiboreal regions are increasing because of expanded use of these northern ecosystems for raw materials, energy, and minerals as well as the potential effects of climatic changes. These forests support many breeding bird species across the Holarctic and allow the persistence of several boreal bird species in hemiboreal and even temperate regions. These bird species are of particular conservation concern as shifting patterns northward in forest composition caused by climate change will likely affect their populations. However, effective management and conservation options are limited because the specifics of these species' breeding habitats are not well understood. We modeled and mapped habitat suitability for 11 species of boreal birds that breed in the lowland conifer forests of the Agassiz Lowlands Ecological Subsection in northern Minnesota and are likely to have reduced breeding habitat in the future: Spruce Grouse (Falcipennis canadensis, Black-backed Woodpecker (Picoides arcticus, Olive-sided Flycatcher (Contopus cooperi, Yellow-bellied Flycatcher (Empidonax flaviventris, Boreal Chickadee (Poecile hudsonicus, Golden-crowned Kinglet (Regulus satrapa, Ruby-crowned Kinglet (Regulus calendula, Swainson's Thrush (Catharus ustulatus, Connecticut Warbler (Oporornis agilis, Palm Warbler (Setophaga palmarum, and Dark-eyed Junco (Junco hyemalis. Sets of 7 to 16 potential environmental covariates, including both stand-level and landscape attributes, were used to develop individual species models. Within this lowland conifer-dominated ecosystem, we found significant selection for specific forest and landscape characteristics by all but one of these species, with the best models including between one and nine variables. Habitat suitability maps were developed from these models and predictions tested with an independent dataset. Model performance depended on species, correctly predicting 56-96% of
Jack C. Capp; David Mehlman
Over five billion birds move each year across the Americas, flying great distances over almost every location and habitat on the continents (Weidensaul 1999). Over 350 of the over 800 bird species in the United States migrate each year to Latin America and the Caribbean (Degraaf and Rappole 1995). Some fly each way over 4000 miles, chasing the seasons across oceans and...
Chalfoun, Anna D.; Schmidt, Kenneth A.
The question of why animals choose particular habitats has important implications for understanding behavioral evolution and distribution of organisms in the wild and for delineating between habitats of different quality for conservation and management. Habitats chosen by animals can influence fitness outcomes via the costs (e.g., predation risk) and benefits (e.g., food availability) of habitat use. Habitat preferences should therefore be under selection to favor those that confer fitness advantages (Clark and Shutler 1999). Indeed, prevailing theory suggests that the habitat preferences of animals should be adaptive, such that fitness is higher in preferred habitats (Hildén 1965, Southwood 1977, Martin 1998). However, studies have often identified apparent mismatches between observed habitat preferences and fitness outcomes across a wide variety of taxa (Valladares and Lawton 1991, Mayhew 1997, Kolbe and Janzen 2002, Arlt and Pärt 2007, Mägi et al. 2009). Certainly, one limitation of studies may be that assessment of “fitness” is typically constrained to fitness surrogates such as nest success rather than lifetime reproductive success or classic Fisherian fitness (Endler 1986). Nevertheless, important habitat choices such as nest sites influence the probability that temporarily sedentary, dependent young are discovered by enemies such as predators and parasites. We therefore expect, on average, to see congruence between evolved habitat preferences and relevant components of fitness (e.g., nest success). Here, we (1) review the prevalence of apparent mismatches between avian breeding-habitat preferences and fitness outcomes using nest-site selection as a focus; (2) describe several potential mechanisms for such mismatches, including anthropogenic, methodological, and ecological–evolutionary; and (3) suggest a framework for understanding the contexts in which habitat preferences represent adaptive decisions, with a primary focus on ecological information
... be high since numbers of bird species and individuals presenting fault bars were significantly higher in the agricultural matrix. In the Afrotropical context, the management of agricultural areas should consider preserving some aspects of natural habitats, and a fallow period of five to eight years, to avoid biodiversity loss.
Full Text Available Rusiyantono Y, Tanari M, Mumu MI (2011 Conservation of maleo bird (Macrocephalon maleo through egg hatching modification and ex situ management. Biodiversitas 12: 171-176. Over exploitation of maleo bird eggs has become the main problem. In addition, habitat demolition and fragmentation have also caused decrease in maleo bird population. This research aimed to know the effectiveness of hatching pattern to produce maleo breeding, studying breeding pattern of maleo bird through hatching approaches of feed quality and temperature adjustment, and studying maleo bird respond towards caring pattern adjustment by measuring plasticity value. There were two phases in this research. The first phase was hatching by using modified incubator. The other one was the caring of the breeding from the result of hatching through feed pattern management using protein and energy balancing. The results of the research indicated that the hatching success was 65%; however, life endurance of the birds from birth to one month of age was only 40%. Their growth showed sufficiently high increase after passing critical period in their body-weght based on feeding pattern containing 21% of protein that was 64.93 g and 62.59 g for maleo in Lore Lindu National Park (LLNP and Bangkiriang Wildlife Reserve (BWR, respectively. Their monthly body-weght increase was 33.06 g in average of feeding pattern containing 13% of protein for LLNP maleo birds and 36.99 g for the maleo in BWR. It was found that feeding pattern containing higher content of protein (21% promoted significant increase in the body-weight of maleo birds. Feeding such birds with high protein content feed along with sufficient energy triggered their growth speed. Based on the findings, it was concluded that maleo birds could be preserved by way of hatching, while the birds could be fed with feed containing high protein and energy in order to accelerate their growth after hatching.
Whytock, Robin C; Fuentes-Montemayor, Elisa; Watts, Kevin; Barbosa De Andrade, Patanjaly; Whytock, Rory T; French, Paul; Macgregor, Nicholas A; Park, Kirsty J
Ecosystem function and resilience are compromised when habitats become fragmented due to land-use change. This has led to national and international conservation strategies aimed at restoring habitat extent and improving functional connectivity (i.e., maintaining dispersal processes). However, biodiversity responses to landscape-scale habitat creation and the relative importance of spatial and temporal scales are poorly understood, and there is disagreement over which conservation strategies should be prioritized. We used 160 years of historic post-agricultural woodland creation as a natural experiment to evaluate biodiversity responses to habitat creation in a landscape context. Birds were surveyed in 101 secondary, broadleaf woodlands aged 10-160 years with ≥80% canopy cover and in landscapes with 0-17% broadleaf woodland cover within 3000 m. We used piecewise structural equation modeling to examine the direct and indirect relationships between bird abundance and diversity, ecological continuity, patch characteristics, and landscape structure and quantified the relative conservation value of local and landscape scales for bird communities. Ecological continuity indirectly affected overall bird abundance and species richness through its effects on stand structure, but had a weaker influence (effect size near 0) on the abundance and diversity of species most closely associated with woodland habitats. This was probably because woodlands were rapidly colonized by woodland generalists in ≤10 years (minimum patch age) but were on average too young (median 50 years) to be colonized by woodland specialists. Local patch characteristics were relatively more important than landscape characteristics for bird communities. Based on our results, biodiversity responses to habitat creation depended on local- and landscape-scale factors that interacted across time and space. We suggest that there is a need for further studies that focus on habitat creation in a landscape
Anteau, Michael J; Sherfy, Mark H; Wiltermuth, Mark T
Animals use proximate cues to select resources that maximize individual fitness. When animals have a diverse array of available habitats, those selected could give insights into true habitat preferences. Since the construction of the Garrison Dam on the Missouri River in North Dakota, Lake Sakakawea (SAK) has become an important breeding area for federally threatened piping plovers (Charadrius melodus; hereafter plovers). We used conditional logistic regression to examine nest-site selection at fine scales (1, 3, and 10 m) during summers 2006-2009 by comparing characteristics at 351 nests to those of 668 random sites within nesting territories. Plovers selected sites (1 m(2)) that were lower than unused random sites, increasing the risk of nest inundation. Plovers selected nest sites that were flat, had little silt, and at least 1 cobble; they also selected for 3-m radius nest areas that were relatively flat and devoid of vegetation and litter. Ninety percent of nests had <38% coverage of silt and <10% slope at the site, and <15% coverage of vegetation or litter and <31% slope within the 3-m radius. Gravel was selected for at nest sites (11% median), but against in the area 10-m from the nest, suggesting plovers select for patches or strips of gravel. Although elevation is rarely evaluated in studies of ground-nesting birds, our results underscore its importance in habitat-selection studies. Relative to where plovers historically nested, habitat at SAK has more diverse topography, substrate composition, vegetation communities, and greater water-level fluctuations. Accordingly, our results provide an example of how habitat-selection results can be interpreted as habitat preferences because they are not influenced by desired habitats being scarce or absent. Further, our results will be useful for directing habitat conservation for plovers and interpreting other habitat-selection studies.
Michael J Anteau
Full Text Available Animals use proximate cues to select resources that maximize individual fitness. When animals have a diverse array of available habitats, those selected could give insights into true habitat preferences. Since the construction of the Garrison Dam on the Missouri River in North Dakota, Lake Sakakawea (SAK has become an important breeding area for federally threatened piping plovers (Charadrius melodus; hereafter plovers. We used conditional logistic regression to examine nest-site selection at fine scales (1, 3, and 10 m during summers 2006-2009 by comparing characteristics at 351 nests to those of 668 random sites within nesting territories. Plovers selected sites (1 m(2 that were lower than unused random sites, increasing the risk of nest inundation. Plovers selected nest sites that were flat, had little silt, and at least 1 cobble; they also selected for 3-m radius nest areas that were relatively flat and devoid of vegetation and litter. Ninety percent of nests had <38% coverage of silt and <10% slope at the site, and <15% coverage of vegetation or litter and <31% slope within the 3-m radius. Gravel was selected for at nest sites (11% median, but against in the area 10-m from the nest, suggesting plovers select for patches or strips of gravel. Although elevation is rarely evaluated in studies of ground-nesting birds, our results underscore its importance in habitat-selection studies. Relative to where plovers historically nested, habitat at SAK has more diverse topography, substrate composition, vegetation communities, and greater water-level fluctuations. Accordingly, our results provide an example of how habitat-selection results can be interpreted as habitat preferences because they are not influenced by desired habitats being scarce or absent. Further, our results will be useful for directing habitat conservation for plovers and interpreting other habitat-selection studies.
Zhang, Ming-Xia; Kyaw, Myint; Li, Guo-Gang; Zhao, Jiang-Bo; Zeng, Xiang-Le; Swa, Kyaw; Quan, Rui-Chang
We conducted four bird biodiversity surveys in the Putao area of northern Myanmar from 2015 to 2017. Combined with anecdotal information collected between 2012 and 2015, we recorded 319 bird species, including two species (Arborophila mandellii and Lanius sphenocercus) previously unrecorded in Myanmar. Bulbuls (Pycnonotidae), babblers (Timaliidae), pigeons and doves (Columbidae), and pheasants and partridges (Phasianidae) were the most abundant groups of birds recorded. Species richness below 1 500 m a. s. l. was higher than species richness at higher elevations. Our results suggest that the current protected areas in this region should be expanded to lower elevations to cover critical conservation gaps. PMID:29181901
Pavlacky, David C; Lukacs, Paul M; Blakesley, Jennifer A; Skorkowsky, Robert C; Klute, David S; Hahn, Beth A; Dreitz, Victoria J; George, T Luke; Hanni, David J
Monitoring is an essential component of wildlife management and conservation. However, the usefulness of monitoring data is often undermined by the lack of 1) coordination across organizations and regions, 2) meaningful management and conservation objectives, and 3) rigorous sampling designs. Although many improvements to avian monitoring have been discussed, the recommendations have been slow to emerge in large-scale programs. We introduce the Integrated Monitoring in Bird Conservation Regions (IMBCR) program designed to overcome the above limitations. Our objectives are to outline the development of a statistically defensible sampling design to increase the value of large-scale monitoring data and provide example applications to demonstrate the ability of the design to meet multiple conservation and management objectives. We outline the sampling process for the IMBCR program with a focus on the Badlands and Prairies Bird Conservation Region (BCR 17). We provide two examples for the Brewer's sparrow (Spizella breweri) in BCR 17 demonstrating the ability of the design to 1) determine hierarchical population responses to landscape change and 2) estimate hierarchical habitat relationships to predict the response of the Brewer's sparrow to conservation efforts at multiple spatial scales. The collaboration across organizations and regions provided economy of scale by leveraging a common data platform over large spatial scales to promote the efficient use of monitoring resources. We designed the IMBCR program to address the information needs and core conservation and management objectives of the participating partner organizations. Although it has been argued that probabilistic sampling designs are not practical for large-scale monitoring, the IMBCR program provides a precedent for implementing a statistically defensible sampling design from local to bioregional scales. We demonstrate that integrating conservation and management objectives with rigorous statistical
David C Pavlacky
Full Text Available Monitoring is an essential component of wildlife management and conservation. However, the usefulness of monitoring data is often undermined by the lack of 1 coordination across organizations and regions, 2 meaningful management and conservation objectives, and 3 rigorous sampling designs. Although many improvements to avian monitoring have been discussed, the recommendations have been slow to emerge in large-scale programs. We introduce the Integrated Monitoring in Bird Conservation Regions (IMBCR program designed to overcome the above limitations. Our objectives are to outline the development of a statistically defensible sampling design to increase the value of large-scale monitoring data and provide example applications to demonstrate the ability of the design to meet multiple conservation and management objectives. We outline the sampling process for the IMBCR program with a focus on the Badlands and Prairies Bird Conservation Region (BCR 17. We provide two examples for the Brewer's sparrow (Spizella breweri in BCR 17 demonstrating the ability of the design to 1 determine hierarchical population responses to landscape change and 2 estimate hierarchical habitat relationships to predict the response of the Brewer's sparrow to conservation efforts at multiple spatial scales. The collaboration across organizations and regions provided economy of scale by leveraging a common data platform over large spatial scales to promote the efficient use of monitoring resources. We designed the IMBCR program to address the information needs and core conservation and management objectives of the participating partner organizations. Although it has been argued that probabilistic sampling designs are not practical for large-scale monitoring, the IMBCR program provides a precedent for implementing a statistically defensible sampling design from local to bioregional scales. We demonstrate that integrating conservation and management objectives with rigorous
Bušek, Ondřej; Reif, Jiří
European biodiversity has suffered from serious declines during the past few decades, with alterations of land use practices resulting in a loss of fine-scale habitat heterogeneity being a dominant driver. This heterogeneity was maintained by extensive landscape management, which has gradually been replaced by either intensive exploitation or land abandonment. It has been suggested that military training can generate habitat heterogeneity that may support the existence of species of conservation concern, but studies rigorously testing the real importance of military training areas for biodiversity are lacking. Here we address this issue by analyses of two datasets. First, we compared land cover classes between all large military training areas (MTAs) and surrounding control areas (CAs) of the same size in the Czech Republic using multivariate redundancy analysis. We found that the difference in land cover between MTAs and CAs was significant and represented the strongest gradient in land cover classes: from various farmland and artificial habitats typical for CAs to forest and scrubland-grassland mosaic typical for MTAs. Second, we selected one of these areas and compared bird species richness between the MTA and the nearby CA using generalized linear mixed effects models. We found that the number of species of conservation concern was significantly higher in the MTA than in the CA. With respect to habitats, bird species richness was significantly higher in the MTA than in the CA for open habitats, but not for forest habitats. Our results are thus consistent with the view that military training creates areas that are different from the surrounding landscape in terms of land cover, and that this difference translates to a suitability for species of conservation concern. It is remarkable that the positive influence of military training is confined to open habitats, which are subject to the most intensive military activities and also suffer the highest degree of
Bruce E. Rieman; John D. Mclntyre
Elements in bull trout biology, population dynamics, habitat, and biotic interactions important to conservation of the species are identified. Bull trout appear to have more specific habitat requirements than other salmonids, but no critical thresholds of acceptable habitat condition were found. Size, temporal variation, and spatial distribution are likely to influence...
Terrell D. Rich; Michael J. Wisdom; Victoria A. Saab
Sagebrush ecosystems occupy over 62,000,000 ha of the western US. However, they have been degraded or completely eliminated by agricultural conversion, overgrazing by domestic livestock, invasion of exotic plants, expansion of pinyon and juniper woodlands, uncharacteristic wildfires, and fragmentation. This habitat loss has led to an increasing number of special status...
Michel, N. L.; Baker, R.; Bergstrom, E.; Cox, D.; Cox, G.; Dale, K.; Jensen, C.; Langham, G.; LeBaron, G.; Loftus, W.; Rowden, J.; Slavin, Z.; Smithson-Stanley, L.; Wilsey, C.
Climate change poses serious challenges for conservation scientists and policymakers. Yet with these challenges come equally great opportunities to engage communities of concerned citizens in climate science and conservation. National Audubon Society's 2014 Birds and Climate Change report found that 314 North American bird species could lose over half their breeding or wintering ranges by 2080 due to climate change. Consequently, in 2016 Audubon developed two new crowd-sourced science programs that mobilized existing birding communities (i.e., Audubon Society chapters) in partnership with scientists to evaluate climate change effects on birds, and take action to protect vulnerable populations. Climate Watch expands upon traditional monitoring programs by involving citizen scientists in hypothesis-driven science, testing predictions of climate-driven range expansion in bluebirds developed by National Audubon Society scientists. Spoonbill Watch is a partnership between an Audubon research scientist and the Pelican Island Audubon Society community, in which citizen scientists monitor a Roseate Spoonbill colony recently established in response to changing habitat and climatic conditions. Additionally, Spoonbill Watch participants and leaders have moved beyond monitoring to take action to protect the colony, by working with the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission towards getting the site declared as a Critical Wildlife Area and by conducting local outreach and education efforts. We will present overviews, lessons learned, and conservation goals and opportunities achieved during the pilot year of Climate Watch and Spoonbill Watch. Scientific - community partnerships such as these are essential to confront the threats posed by climate change.
Robert M. Chipley
The idea for the Important Bird Area Program originated in a series of studies in the early 1980s conducted by BirdLife International. Recognizing that these studies could become a powerful tool for conservation, BirdLife International began an effort to identify and gather data regarding the most important areas for birds in Europe and to make this information...
De Coster, Greet; Banks-Leite, Cristina; Metzger, Jean Paul
Habitat loss often reduces the number of species as well as functional diversity. Dramatic effects to species composition have also been shown, but changes to functional composition have so far been poorly documented, partly owing to a lack of appropriate indices. We here develop three new community indices (i.e. functional integrity, community integrity of ecological groups and community specialization) to investigate how habitat loss affects the diversity and composition of functional traits and species. We used data from more than 5000 individuals of 137 bird species captured in 57 sites in the Brazilian Atlantic Forest, a highly endangered biodiversity hotspot.Results indicate that habitat loss leads to a decrease in functional integrity while measures of functional diversity remain unchanged or are even positively affected. Changes to functional integrity were caused by (i) a decrease in the provisioning of some functions, and an increase in others; (ii) strong within-guild species turnover; and (iii) a replacement of specialists by generalists. Hence, communities from more deforested sites seem to provide different but not fewer functions. We show the importance of investigating changes to both diversity and composition of functional traits and species, as the effects of habitat loss on ecosystem functioning may be more complex than previously thought. Crucially, when only functional diversity is assessed, important changes to ecological functions may remain undetected and negative effects of habitat loss underestimated, thereby imperiling the application of effective conservation actions.
Gorresen, P. Marcos; Camp, Richard J.; Gaudioso, Jacqueline; Brinck, Kevin W.; Berkowitz, Paul; Jacobi, James D.
Biological diversity, or biodiversity, is the variety and abundance of species in a defined area, and is one of the oldest and most basic descriptions of biological communities. Understanding how populations and communities are structured and change over space and time in response to internal and external forces is a management priority. Effective management practices and conservation strategies depend on our understanding of the relationship between changes in biodiversity and ecological drivers such as invasive species, land use and climate change. To demonstrate how changes in biodiversity may be monitored over a large (400 km2) tract of native forest habitat, we compared bird and plant community composition and structure in an upper montane region of Hawai‘i Island originally surveyed in 1977 as part of the Hawai‘i Forest Bird Survey (Scott et al. 1986) with a comprehensive sample of the same region in 2015.Our findings suggest that across a region spanning an elevation range of 600 to 2,000 m considerable changes occurred in the plant and bird communities between 1977 and 2015. Endemic and indigenous plants species richness (i.e., total number of species) decreased dramatically in the low and middle elevations below an invasive weed front, whereas naturalized plant species richness did not change between the two periods at any elevation. Endemic bird abundance decreased and two species were lost in the lower elevations (environment. Forest habitat in a variety of settings (i.e., islands and regions with differing land-use histories and elevation ranges), however, can provide opportunities to evaluate the influence of ecological drivers. Declines in native bird biodiversity in low-elevation areas may be attributed to invasive species as land use and climate conditions have remained relatively similar over the 40-year period. Thus, the shift from an endemic-naturalized co-dominated community in 1977 to one dominated by naturalized, alien birds in 2015, and
Megan M Friggens
Full Text Available Future expected changes in climate and human activity threaten many riparian habitats, particularly in the southwestern U.S. Using Maximum Entropy (MaxEnt3.3.3 modeling, we characterized habitat relationships and generated spatial predictions of habitat suitability for the Lucy's warbler (Oreothlypis luciae, the Southwestern willow flycatcher (Empidonax traillii extimus and the Western yellow-billed cuckoo (Coccyzus americanus. Our goal was to provide site- and species-specific information that can be used by managers to identify areas for habitat conservation and/or restoration along the Rio Grande in New Mexico. We created models of suitable habitat for each species based on collection and survey samples and climate, biophysical, and vegetation data. We projected habitat suitability under future climates by applying these models to conditions generated from three climate models for 2030, 2060 and 2090. By comparing current and future distributions, we identified how habitats are likely to change as a result of changing climate and the consequences of those changes for these bird species. We also examined whether land ownership of high value sites shifts under changing climate conditions. Habitat suitability models performed well. Biophysical characteristics were more important that climate conditions for predicting habitat suitability with distance to water being the single most important predictor. Climate, though less important, was still influential and led to declines of suitable habitat of more than 60% by 2090. For all species, suitable habitat tended to shrink over time within the study area leaving a few core areas of high importance. Overall, climate changes will increase habitat fragmentation and reduce breeding habitat patch size. The best strategy for conserving bird species within the Rio Grande will include measures to maintain and restore critical habitat refugia. This study provides an example of a presence-only habitat model
... Fish and Wildlife Service Montana Department of Natural Resources and Conservation Final Habitat Conservation Plan and Final Environmental Impact Statement AGENCY: Fish and Wildlife Service, Interior. ACTION... received from the Montana Department of Natural Resources and Conservation (DNRC) a Final Habitat...
Jorge E Ramírez-Albores
Full Text Available Knowledge of the composition of the bird community in Alto Balsas (southwestern Puebla, Central Mexico is needed for management programs aiming at protection and conservation of bird species and their habitats I studied sites with tropical deciduous forest. Data were obtained during 1666 hours of field work in 238 days from March 1998 to September 2000. Six permanent transect (3.5 km long and 100 m wide; 30 to 40 ha in each transect were used to determine species richness in the study sites. The Shannon-Wiener diversity index was calculated for each site and Sorensen’s index was used to assess similarity between sites. One-way analysis of variance was used to test for differences between sites in species richness and diversity values. A total of 128 species were recorded, Tepexco (n = 75, H´= 3.76 and Puente Márquez (n = 61, H´= 3.62 were the sites that showed the greatest specific richness and diversity. However, species richness and diversity seasonally patterns were similar among sites (ANOVA p > 0.05, with highest diversity during the rainy season. Most species were resident; 42 were migrants. The avifauna was represented by 30 species associated with tropical deciduous forest and 12 from open habitats or heavily altered habitats. Insectivores were the best represented trophic category, followed by carnivores and omnivores. Rev. Biol. Trop. 55 (1: 287-300. Epub 2007 March. 31.Este estudio describe la diversidad avifaunística en sitios del Alto Balsas (suroeste de Puebla en el Centro de México y examina la variación en la diversidad de las especies de aves. El estudio fue llevado a cabo en sitios con presencia de bosque tropical caducifolio. Los datos fueron obtenidos durante 1666 horas de trabajo de campo en 238 días de Marzo 1998 a Septiembre 2000. Se realizaron seis transectos permanentes (de 3.5 km de longitud y 100 m de ancho; de 30 a 40 ha en cada transecto para determinar la riqueza de especies en los sitios de estudio. Se
Tryjanowski, Piotr; Skórka, Piotr; Sparks, Tim H.; Biaduń, Waldemar; Brauze, Tomasz; Hetmański, Tomasz; Martyka, Rafał; Indykiewicz, Piotr; Myczko, Łukasz; Kunysz, Przemysław; Kawa, Piotr; Czyż, Stanisław; Czechowski, Paweł; Polakowski, Michał; Zduniak, Piotr
Bird feeding is one of the most widespread direct interactions between man and nature, and this has important social and environmental consequences. However, this activity can differ between rural and urban habitats, due to inter alia habitat structure, human behaviour and the composition of wintering bird communities. We counted birds in 156 squares (0.25 km2 each) in December 2012 and again in January 2013 in locations in and around 26 towns and cities across Poland (in each urban area, we ...
Chadwick D Rittenhouse
Full Text Available Quantifying changes in forest bird diversity is an essential task for developing effective conservation actions. When subtle changes in diversity accumulate over time, annual comparisons may offer an incomplete perspective of changes in diversity. In this case, progressive change, the comparison of changes in diversity from a baseline condition, may offer greater insight because changes in diversity are assessed over longer periods of times. Our objectives were to determine how forest bird diversity has changed over time and whether those changes were associated with forest disturbance.We used North American Breeding Bird Survey data, a time series of Landsat images classified with respect to land cover change, and mixed-effects models to associate changes in forest bird community structure with forest disturbance, latitude, and longitude in the conterminous United States for the years 1985 to 2006. We document a significant divergence from the baseline structure for all birds of similar migratory habit and nest location, and all forest birds as a group from 1985 to 2006. Unexpectedly, decreases in progressive similarity resulted from small changes in richness (<1 species per route for the 22-year study period and modest losses in abundance (-28.7 - -10.2 individuals per route that varied by migratory habit and nest location. Forest disturbance increased progressive similarity for Neotropical migrants, permanent residents, ground nesting, and cavity nesting species. We also documented highest progressive similarity in the eastern United States.Contemporary forest bird community structure is changing rapidly over a relatively short period of time (e.g., approximately 22 years. Forest disturbance and forest regeneration are primary factors associated with contemporary forest bird community structure, longitude and latitude are secondary factors, and forest loss is a tertiary factor. Importantly, these findings suggest some regions of the United
Rittenhouse, Chadwick D; Pidgeon, Anna M; Albright, Thomas P; Culbert, Patrick D; Clayton, Murray K; Flather, Curtis H; Huang, Chengquan; Masek, Jeffrey G; Stewart, Susan I; Radeloff, Volker C
Quantifying changes in forest bird diversity is an essential task for developing effective conservation actions. When subtle changes in diversity accumulate over time, annual comparisons may offer an incomplete perspective of changes in diversity. In this case, progressive change, the comparison of changes in diversity from a baseline condition, may offer greater insight because changes in diversity are assessed over longer periods of times. Our objectives were to determine how forest bird diversity has changed over time and whether those changes were associated with forest disturbance. We used North American Breeding Bird Survey data, a time series of Landsat images classified with respect to land cover change, and mixed-effects models to associate changes in forest bird community structure with forest disturbance, latitude, and longitude in the conterminous United States for the years 1985 to 2006. We document a significant divergence from the baseline structure for all birds of similar migratory habit and nest location, and all forest birds as a group from 1985 to 2006. Unexpectedly, decreases in progressive similarity resulted from small changes in richness (<1 species per route for the 22-year study period) and modest losses in abundance (-28.7 - -10.2 individuals per route) that varied by migratory habit and nest location. Forest disturbance increased progressive similarity for Neotropical migrants, permanent residents, ground nesting, and cavity nesting species. We also documented highest progressive similarity in the eastern United States. Contemporary forest bird community structure is changing rapidly over a relatively short period of time (e.g., approximately 22 years). Forest disturbance and forest regeneration are primary factors associated with contemporary forest bird community structure, longitude and latitude are secondary factors, and forest loss is a tertiary factor. Importantly, these findings suggest some regions of the United States may
Lennox, Gareth D.; Dallimer, Martin; Armsworth, Paul R.
Voluntary conservation agreements are commonly used to stem the impact of habitat destruction and degradation on terrestrial biodiversity. Past studies that aim to inform how resources for conservation should be allocated across land parcels have assumed the costs of securing conservation on sites...
Wild, Teri C.; Kendall, Steven J.; Guldager, Nikki; Powell, Abby N.
Smith's Longspur (Calcarius pictus) is a species of conservation concern which breeds in Arctic habitats that are expected to be especially vulnerable to climate change. We used bird presence and habitat data from point-transect surveys conducted at 12 sites across the Brooks Range, Alaska, 2003–2009, to identify breeding areas, describe local habitat associations, and identify suitable habitat using a predictive model of Smith's Longspur distribution. Smith's Longspurs were observed at seven sites, where they were associated with a variety of sedge–shrub habitats composed primarily of mosses, sedges, tussocks, and dwarf shrubs; erect shrubs were common but sparse. Nonmetric multidimensional scaling ordination of ground cover revealed positive associations of Smith's Longspur presence with sedges and mosses and a negative association with high cover of shrubs. To model predicted distribution, we used boosted regression trees to relate landscape variables to occurrence. Our model predicted that Smith's Longspurs may occur in valleys and foothills of the northeastern and southeastern mountains and in upland plateaus of the western mountains, and farther west than currently documented, over a predicted area no larger than 15% of the Brooks Range. With climate change, shrubs are expected to grow larger and denser, while soil moisture and moss cover are predicted to decrease. These changes may reduce Smith's Longspur habitat quality and limit distribution in the Brooks Range to poorly drained lowlands and alpine plateaus where sedge–shrub tundra is likely to persist. Conversely, northward advance of shrubs into sedge tundra may create suitable habitat, thus supporting a northward longspur distribution shift.
Desmawati, Iska; Indah Trisnawati D., T.; Kurnia, Ory; Hamdani, Albi; Fahmi, Mahsun; Fahmi, Mirza
Migratory Birds are responding to recent climate change in variety of ways. Distribution study of migratory birds will help to understand climate change effect in ecosystem area. Its supported by natural resources all around Indonesia. One of this place is Surabaya city specially Wonorejo area. Wonorejo is one of the Important Bird Area (IBA), specifically for bird conserved by Indonesian law and migratory birds. This research aims to know that distribution study on migratory bird enhances the knowledge of climate change effect. The distribution study use mapping method and the environment variables study analyzed by multivariate analysis. The description about how to analize the climate change effect in this area will be described by map and ilustration model. The result show that migratory bird (Scolopacidae) use different area of preference habitat in Wonorejo during migratory season on 2010-2016. In particular, the details of population and scale is likely to characterize global change biodiversity of migratory birds research need to improve in future.
Full Text Available Munderikadavu is rich in avifaunal diversity. A total of 82 species of birds from 36 families belonging to 13 orders were recorded in the wetland including wetland dependant species. Lowland vegetation had the highest species richness (46 species followed by upland (41 species, aerial (38 species, emergent vegetation (22 species and paddy fields (21 species. Open water had the lowest species richness. Upland vegetation had the highest species diversity (H′-3.19 followed by aerial (H′-2.52. There was more species overlap between emergent and low land vegetations (Cm-0.7. The threats in Munderikadavu wetland were dumping of waste and conversion of cultivation land into shrimp farming area. Thus land use changes need to be regulated in order to conserve the wetland and bird community.
...-FF09A30000] Wild Bird Conservation Act; Receipt of Application for Approval AGENCY: Fish and Wildlife Service... birds that are protected in accordance with the Wild Bird Conservation Act of 1992. DATES: Written data... invited to comment on the following application for approval to conduct certain activities with bird...
Tryjanowski, Piotr; Skórka, Piotr; Sparks, Tim H; Biaduń, Waldemar; Brauze, Tomasz; Hetmański, Tomasz; Martyka, Rafał; Indykiewicz, Piotr; Myczko, Łukasz; Kunysz, Przemysław; Kawa, Piotr; Czyż, Stanisław; Czechowski, Paweł; Polakowski, Michał; Zduniak, Piotr; Jerzak, Leszek; Janiszewski, Tomasz; Goławski, Artur; Duduś, Leszek; Nowakowski, Jacek J; Wuczyński, Andrzej; Wysocki, Dariusz
Bird feeding is one of the most widespread direct interactions between man and nature, and this has important social and environmental consequences. However, this activity can differ between rural and urban habitats, due to inter alia habitat structure, human behaviour and the composition of wintering bird communities. We counted birds in 156 squares (0.25 km(2) each) in December 2012 and again in January 2013 in locations in and around 26 towns and cities across Poland (in each urban area, we surveyed 3 squares and also 3 squares in nearby rural areas). At each count, we noted the number of bird feeders, the number of bird feeders with food, the type of feeders, additional food supplies potentially available for birds (bread offered by people, bins) and finally the birds themselves. In winter, urban and rural areas differ in the availability of food offered intentionally and unintentionally to birds by humans. Both types of food availability are higher in urban areas. Our findings suggest that different types of bird feeder support only those species specialized for that particular food type and this relationship is similar in urban and rural areas.
Fagan, Matthew E; DeFries, Ruth S; Sesnie, Steven E; Arroyo-Mora, J Pablo; Chazdon, Robin L
Re-establishing connectivity between protected areas isolated by habitat clearing is a key conservation goal in the humid tropics. In northeastern Costa Rica, payments for environmental services (PES) and a government ban on deforestation have subsidized forest protection and reforestation in the San Juan-La Selva Biological Corridor (SJLSBC), resulting in a decline in mature forest loss and the expansion of tree plantations. We use field studies and graph models to assess how conservation efforts have altered functional connectivity over the last 25 years for four species of insectivorous understory birds. Field playback studies assessed how reforestation habitat quality affected the willingness of Myrmeciza exsul, Henicorhina leucosticta, Thamnophilus atrinucha, and Glyphorynchus spirurus to travel outside forest habitat for territorial defense. Observed travel distances were greatest in nonnative and native tree plantations with high understory stem density, regardless of overstory composition. In contrast, tree plantations with low stem density had travel responses comparable to open pasture for three of the four bird species. We modeled landscape connectivity for each species using graph models based on varying possible travel distances in tree plantations, gallery forests, and pastures. From 1986 to 2011, connectivity for all species declined in the SJLSBC landscape (5825 km 2 ) by 14% to 21% despite only a 4.9% net loss in forest area and the rapid expansion of tree plantations over 2% of the landscape. Plantation placement in the landscape limited their potential facilitation of connectivity because they were located either far from forest cover or within already contiguous forest areas. We mapped current connectivity bottlenecks and identified priority areas for future reforestation. We estimate that reforestation of priority areas could improve connectivity by 2% with only a 1% gain in forest cover, an impressive gain given the small area reforested
Stephen A. Laymon
The California Wildlife-Habitat Relationship (WHR) system was tested for birds breeding in the Valley-Foothill Riparian habitat along California's Sacramento and South Fork Kern rivers. The model performed poorly with 33 pct and 21 pct correct predictions respectively at the two locations. Changes to the model for 60 species on the Sacramento River and 66 species...
Barrow, Wylie C.; Baldwin, Michael J.; Randall, Lori A.; Pitre, John; Dudley, Kyle J.
This project was initiated to assess migrating and wintering bird use of lands enrolled in the Natural Resources Conservation Service’s (NRCS) Migratory Bird Habitat Initiative (MBHI). The MBHI program was developed in response to the Deepwater Horizon oil spill in 2010, with the goal of improving/creating habitat for waterbirds affected by the spill. In collaboration with the University of Delaware (UDEL), we used weather surveillance radar data (Sieges 2014), portable marine radar data, thermal infrared images, and visual observations to assess bird use of MBHI easements. Migrating and wintering birds routinely make synchronous flights near dusk (e.g., departure during migration, feeding flights during winter). Weather radars readily detect birds at the onset of these flights and have proven to be useful remote sensing tools for assessing bird-habitat relations during migration and determining the response of wintering waterfowl to wetland restoration (e.g., Wetlands Reserve Program lands). However, ground-truthing is required to identify radar echoes to species or species group. We designed a field study to ground-truth a larger-scale, weather radar assessment of bird use of MBHI sites in southwest Louisiana. We examined seasonal bird use of MBHI fields in fall, winter, and spring of 2011-2012. To assess diurnal use, we conducted total area surveys of MBHI sites in the afternoon, collecting data on bird species composition, abundance, behavior, and habitat use. In the evenings, we quantified bird activity at the MBHI easements and described flight behavior (i.e., birds landing in, departing from, circling, or flying over the MBHI tract). Our field sampling captured the onset of evening flights and spanned the period of collection of the weather radar data analyzed. Pre- and post-dusk surveys were conducted using a portable radar system and a thermal infrared camera. Landbirds, shorebirds, and wading birds were commonly found on MBHI fields during diurnal
... biological resource conservation across the Mojave and Colorado Desert regions of southern California. The...-N131; 80221-1112-80221-F2] Desert Renewable Energy Conservation Plan, Habitat Conservation Plan and..., as amended, for the proposed Desert Renewable Energy Conservation Plan (DRECP). The EIS will be a...
Faaborg, John; Holmes, Richard T.; Anders, A.D.; Bildstein, K.L.; Dugger, K.M.; Gauthreaux, S.A.; Heglund, P.; Hobson, K.A.; Jahn, A.E.; Johnson, D.H.; Latta, S.C.; Levey, D.J.; Marra, P.P.; Merkord, C.L.; Nol, E.; Rothstein, S.I.; Sherry, T.W.; Scott, Sillett T.; Thompson, F. R.; Warnock, N.
Migratory bird needs must be met during four phases of the year: breeding season, fall migration, wintering, and spring migration; thus, management may be needed during all four phases. The bulk of research and management has focused on the breeding season, although several issues remain unsettled, including the spatial extent of habitat influences on fitness and the importance of habitat on the breeding grounds used after breeding. Although detailed investigations have shed light on the ecology and population dynamics of a few avian species, knowledge is sketchy for most species. Replication of comprehensive studies is needed for multiple species across a range of areas. Information deficiencies are even greater during the wintering season, when birds require sites that provide security and food resources needed for survival and developing nutrient reserves for spring migration and, possibly, reproduction. Research is needed on many species simply to identify geographic distributions, wintering sites, habitat use, and basic ecology. Studies are complicated, however, by the mobility of birds and by sexual segregation during winter. Stable-isotope methodology has offered an opportunity to identify linkages between breeding and wintering sites, which facilitates understanding the complete annual cycle of birds. The twice-annual migrations are the poorest-understood events in a bird's life. Migration has always been a risky undertaking, with such anthropogenic features as tall buildings, towers, and wind generators adding to the risk, Species such as woodland specialists migrating through eastern North America have numerous options for pausing during migration to replenish nutrients, but some species depend on limited stopover locations. Research needs for migration include identifying pathways and timetables of migration, quality and distribution of habitats, threats posed by towers and other tall structures, and any bottlenecks for migration. Issues such as human
Faaborg, John; Holmes, Richard T; Anders, Angela D; Bildstein, Keith L; Dugger, Katie M; Gauthreaux, Sidney A; Heglund, Patricia; Hobson, Keith A; Jahn, Alex E; Johnson, Douglas H; Latta, Steven C; Levey, Douglas J; Marra, Peter P; Merkord, Christopher L; Nol, Erica; Rothstein, Stephen I; Sherry, Thomas W; Sillett, T Scott; Thompson, Frank R; Warnock, Nils
Migratory bird needs must be met during four phases of the year: breeding season, fall migration, wintering, and spring migration; thus, management may be needed during all four phases. The bulk of research and management has focused on the breeding season, although several issues remain unsettled, including the spatial extent of habitat influences on fitness and the importance of habitat on the breeding grounds used after breeding. Although detailed investigations have shed light on the ecology and population dynamics of a few avian species, knowledge is sketchy for most species. Replication of comprehensive studies is needed for multiple species across a range of areas, Information deficiencies are even greater during the wintering season, when birds require sites that provide security and food resources needed for survival and developing nutrient reserves for spring migration and, possibly, reproduction. Research is needed on many species simply to identify geographic distributions, wintering sites, habitat use, and basic ecology. Studies are complicated, however, by the mobility of birds and by sexual segregation during winter. Stable-isotope methodology has offered an opportunity to identify linkages between breeding and wintering sites, which facilitates understanding the complete annual cycle of birds. The twice-annual migrations are the poorest-understood events in a bird's life. Migration has always been a risky undertaking, with such anthropogenic features as tall buildings, towers, and wind generators adding to the risk. Species such as woodland specialists migrating through eastern North America have numerous options for pausing during migration to replenish nutrients, but some species depend on limited stopover locations. Research needs for migration include identifying pathways and timetables of migration, quality and distribution of habitats, threats posed by towers and other tall structures, and any bottlenecks for migration. Issues such as human
Burley, J.B.; Hopkins, R.B.
Throughout western North Dakota the number of unreclaimed surface coal and coal-uranium mines might total over 1100. We examined the potential for enhancing the nongame bird habitat values of unreclaimed mine lands in the arid, western region of North Dakota. Generally, the greatest variety of birds occurred in natural and planted woodlands, while fewer birds occurred in unreclaimed mine lands, grasslands, shrublands and croplands. Deciduous woodland types supported more species of birds than coniferous types. Planted woodlands supported about the same number of bird species as some natural deciduous woodland types and more species than coniferous woods. Unreclaimed mine lands supported more species than grasslands and croplands, and about the same number of species as native shrublands. The highest bird densities were in planted woodlands. Bird diversity varied positively with habitat diversity. The bird fauna of unreclaimed mine lands can be enhanced by creating more diverse habitats. Seventeen guidelines to enhance unreclaimed mine lands for nongame birds are presented. These guidelines can be used in preserving habitats threatened by surface mining and reclaiming previously mined lands
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Marine Bird Habitats (F040) is one of a group of seven datasets related to Marine Birds from Coastal Alaska and Puget Sound Data (1975 -1978). Each dataset uses the...
Department of the Interior — Between spring 1976 and fall 1980 we studied the occurrence, abundance, and habitat use of birds over a 2000 km² segment of the northcentral Alaska Peninsula. During...
Wal, van der J.C.; Peña-Álvarez, B.; Arriaga-Weiss, S.L.; Hernández-Daumás, S.
We studied species, functional groups, and habitat preferences of birds in five classes of agroforestry systems: agroforests, animal agroforestry, linear agroforestry, sequential agroforestry, and crops under tree cover in Tabasco, Mexico. Sampling sites were >2 km from natural forest fragments.
Michelle A Labbe
Full Text Available Many species of mature forest-nesting birds ("forest birds" undergo a pronounced shift in habitat use during the post-fledging period and move from their forest nesting sites into areas of early-successional vegetation. Mortality is high during this period, thus understanding the resource requirements of post-fledging birds has implications for conservation. Efforts to identify predictors of abundance of forest birds in patches of early-successional habitats have so far been equivocal, yet these previous studies have primarily focused on contiguously forested landscapes and the potential for landscape-scale influences in more fragmented and modified landscapes is largely unknown. Landscape composition can have a strong influence on the abundance and productivity of forest birds during the nesting period, and could therefore affect the number of forest birds in the landscape available to colonize early-successional habitats during the post-fledging period. Therefore, the inclusion of landscape characteristics should increase the explanatory power of models of forest bird abundance in early-successional habitat patches during the post-fledging period. We examined forest bird abundance and body condition in relation to landscape and habitat characteristics of 15 early-successional sites during the post-fledging season in Massachusetts. The abundance of forest birds was influenced by within-patch habitat characteristics, however the explanatory power of these models was significantly increased by the inclusion of landscape fragmentation and the abundance of forest birds in adjacent forest during the nesting period for some species and age groups. Our findings show that including factors beyond the patch scale can explain additional variation in the abundance of forest birds in early-successional habitats during the post-fledging period. We conclude that landscape composition should be considered when siting early-successional habitat to maximize its
Dotta, G; Phalan, B; Silva, T W; Green, R; Balmford, A
Globally, agriculture is the greatest source of threat to biodiversity, through both ongoing conversion of natural habitat and intensification of existing farmland. Land sparing and land sharing have been suggested as alternative approaches to reconcile this threat with the need for land to produce food. To examine which approach holds most promise for grassland species, we examined how bird population densities changed with farm yield (production per unit area) in the Campos of Brazil and Uruguay. We obtained information on biodiversity and crop yields from 24 sites that differed in agricultural yield. Density-yield functions were fitted for 121 bird species to describe the response of population densities to increasing farm yield, measured in terms of both food energy and profit. We categorized individual species according to how their population changed across the yield gradient as being positively or negatively affected by farming and according to whether the species' total population size was greater under land-sparing, land-sharing, or an intermediate strategy. Irrespective of the yield, most species were negatively affected by farming. Increasing yields reduced densities of approximately 80% of bird species. We estimated land sparing would result in larger populations than other sorts of strategies for 67% to 70% of negatively affected species, given current production levels, including three threatened species. This suggests that increasing yields in some areas while reducing grazing to low levels elsewhere may be the best option for bird conservation in these grasslands. Implementing such an approach would require conservation and production policies to be explicitly linked to support yield increases in farmed areas and concurrently guarantee that larger areas of lightly grazed natural grasslands are set aside for conservation. © 2015 Society for Conservation Biology.
Tarjuelo, Rocío; Morales, Manuel B.; Traba, Juan; Delgado, M. Paula
Biotic interactions and land uses have been proposed as factors that determine the distribution of the species at local scale. The presence of heterospecifics may modify the habitat selection pattern of the individuals and this may have important implications for the design of effective conservation strategies. However, conservation proposals are often focused on a single flagship or umbrella species taken as representative of an entire assemblage requirements. Our aim is to identify and evaluate the role of coexistence areas at local scale as conservation tools, by using distribution data of two endangered birds, the Little Bustard and the Great Bustard. Presence-only based suitability models for each species were built with MaxEnt using variables of substrate type and topography. Probability maps of habitat suitability for each species were combined to generate a map in which coexistence and exclusive use areas were delimitated. Probabilities of suitable habitat for each species inside coexistence and exclusive areas were compared. As expected, habitat requirements of Little and Great Bustards differed. Coexistence areas presented lower probabilities of habitat suitability than exclusive use ones. We conclude that differences in species' habitat preferences can hinder the efficiency of protected areas with multi-species conservation purposes. Our results highlight the importance of taking into account the role of biotic interactions when designing conservation measurements. PMID:24498210
Full Text Available Present work investigates the impact of the agricultural activity in the Peruvian coast on the biodiversity of birds. The study includes the monitoring of birds in asparagus and grapes farms of Ica valley, from January-2004 to January-2006. We evaluated eight types of habitats distributed in a total of 1288 has. Throughout the period of study we registered 93 species of birds. The abundance, richness and diversity were greater in the summers. The greater abundance happened in the habitats of land of asparagus, river brushwood and live fences. The greater richness and diversity happened in January-2006 in alfalfa cultures with huarangos and live fences. The most abundant species were the residents, as Zenaida meloda (6,6 ind./it has, Pygochelidon cyanoleuca (5,9 and the migratory Hirundo rustica (5,9. We registered 12 migratory species. From the conservationist point of view, the number of species catalogued in some degree of threat, at national and international level, is very high. We can emphasize the vulnerable Xenospingus concolor, the Peruvian endemic Colaptes atricollis and the species of desert Geositta peruviana, Sporophila simplex and Burhinus superciliaris. This study demonstrates the importance of agroecosystems in the conservation of the Peruvian Coastal Desert biodiversity, in particular if the enterprise carries out a policy of respect to environment.
Jared D. Wolfe; Matthew D. Johnson; C. John Ralph; R. Mark Brigham
Nearctic-neotropic migrant birds need to replenish energy reserves during stopover periods to successfully complete their semiannual movements. In this study we used linear models to examine the habitat use of 11 migrant species in northeastern Costa Rica to better understand the influence of food and structural resources on the presence of birds during stopover...
United States Department of Agriculture, Forest Service
Breeding bird populations ranged from 3.35 to 3.48 individuals/ha over a 3-year study conducted from 1981 to 1983. Brewer's sparrows, sage sparrows, sage thrashers, and black-throated sparrows were numerically dominant. Horned larks and western meadowlarks were less common. Results are compared with bird populations in Great Basin sagebrush habitats elsewhere in the United States.
Mushet, David M.; Neau, Jordan L.; Euliss, Ned H.
Amphibians provide many ecosystem services valued by society. However, populations have declined globally with most declines linked to habitat change. Wetlands and surrounding terrestrial grasslands form habitat for amphibians in the North American Prairie Pothole Region (PPR). Wetland drainage and grassland conversion have destroyed or degraded much amphibian habitat in the PPR. However, conservation grasslands can provide alternate habitat. In the United States, the Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) is the largest program maintaining grasslands on agricultural lands. We used an ecosystem services model (InVEST) parameterized for the PPR to quantify amphibian habitat over a six-year period (2007–2012). We then quantified changes in availability of amphibian habitat under various land-cover scenarios representing incremental losses (10%, 25%, 50%, 75%, and 100%) of CRP grasslands from 2012 levels. The area of optimal amphibian habitat in the four PPR ecoregions modeled (i.e., Northern Glaciated Plains, Northwestern Glaciated Plains, Lake Agassiz Plain, Des Moines Lobe) declined by approximately 22%, from 3.8 million ha in 2007 to 2.9 million ha in 2012. These losses were driven by the conversion of CRP grasslands to croplands, primarily for corn and soybean production. Our modeling identified an additional 0.8 million ha (26%) of optimal amphibian habitat that would be lost if remaining CRP lands are returned to crop production. An economic climate favoring commodity production over conservation has resulted in substantial losses of amphibian habitat across the PPR that will likely continue into the future. Other regions of the world face similar challenges to maintaining amphibian habitats.
Full Text Available Evidence suggests that animal patterns (motifs function in camouflage. Irregular mottled patterns can facilitate concealment when stationary in cluttered habitats, whereas regular patterns typically prevent capture during movement in open habitats. Bird plumage patterns have predominantly converged on just four types—mottled (irregular, scales, bars and spots (regular—and habitat could be driving convergent evolution in avian patterning. Based on sensory ecology, we therefore predict that irregular patterns would be associated with visually noisy closed habitats and that regular patterns would be associated with open habitats. Regular patterns have also been shown to function in communication for sexually competing males to stand-out and attract females, so we predict that male breeding plumage patterns evolved in both open and closed habitats. Here, taking phylogenetic relatedness into account, we investigate ecological selection for bird plumage patterns across the class Aves. We surveyed plumage patterns in 80% of all avian species worldwide. Of these, 2,756 bird species have regular and irregular plumage patterns as well as habitat information. In this subset, we tested whether adult breeding/non-breeding plumages in each sex, and juvenile plumages, were associated with the habitat types found within the species’ geographical distributions. We found no evidence for an association between habitat and plumage patterns across the world’s birds and little phylogenetic signal. We also found that species with regular and irregular plumage patterns were distributed randomly across the world’s eco-regions without being affected by habitat type. These results indicate that at the global spatial and taxonomic scale, habitat does not predict convergent evolution in bird plumage patterns, contrary to the camouflage hypothesis.
Schippers, P.; Grashof, C.J.; Verboom, J.; Baveco, J.M.; Jochem, R.; Meeuwsen, H.A.M.; Adrichem, van M.H.C.
It is generally assumed that large patches of natural habitat are better for the survival of species than the same amount of habitat in smaller fragments or linear elements like hedges and tree rows. We use a spatially explicit individual-based model of a woodland bird to explore this hypothesis. We
Gutiérrez, Jorge S.; Rakhimberdiev, Eldar; Piersma, Theunis; Thieltges, David W.
Aim: Habitat use and migration strategies of animals are often associated with spatial variation in parasite pressure, but how they relate to one another is not well understood. Here, we use a large dataset on helminth species richness of Charadriiform birds to test whether higher habitat diversity
Gutiérrez, J.S.; Rakhimberdiev, E.; Piersma, T.; Thieltges, D.W.
Aim Habitat use and migration strategies of animals are often associated withspatial variation in parasite pressure, but how they relate to one another is notwell understood. Here, we use a large dataset on helminth species richness ofCharadriiform birds to test whether higher habitat diversity and
Roč. 50, č. 4 (2001), s. 281-289 ISSN 0139-7893 R&D Projects: GA AV ČR IBS6093007 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z6093917 Keywords : forest birds * habitat preference * habitat selection Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour Impact factor: 0.287, year: 2001
Gary M Langham
Full Text Available Human-induced climate change is increasingly recognized as a fundamental driver of biological processes and patterns. Historic climate change is known to have caused shifts in the geographic ranges of many taxa and future climate change is expected to result in even greater redistributions of species. As a result, predicting the impact of climate change on future patterns of biodiversity will greatly aid conservation planning. Using the North American Breeding Bird Survey and Audubon Christmas Bird Count, two of the most comprehensive continental datasets of vertebrates in the world, and correlative distribution modeling, we assessed geographic range shifts for 588 North American bird species during both the breeding and non-breeding seasons under a range of future emission scenarios (SRES A2, A1B, B2 through the end of the century. Here we show that 314 species (53% are projected to lose more than half of their current geographic range across three scenarios of climate change through the end of the century. For 126 species, loss occurs without concomitant range expansion; whereas for 188 species, loss is coupled with potential to colonize new replacement range. We found no strong associations between projected climate sensitivities and existing conservation prioritizations. Moreover, species responses were not clearly associated with habitat affinities, migration strategies, or climate change scenarios. Our results demonstrate the need to include climate sensitivity into current conservation planning and to develop adaptive management strategies that accommodate shrinking and shifting geographic ranges. The persistence of many North American birds will depend on their ability to colonize climatically suitable areas outside of current ranges and management actions that target climate adaptation.
Vashti (Tice) Supplee; Jennie MacFarland
The Important Bird Areas (IBA) Program is a worldwide program through BirdLife International that identifies sites considered to provide important habitats for avian species. Criteria for designation are species abundance, diversity, and range restriction. As the United States Partner of BirdLife International, the National Audubon Society administers the IBA Program...
Stafford, J.D.; Kaminski, R.M.; Reinecke, K.J.
Worldwide, rice (Oryza sativa) agriculture typically involves seasonal flooding and soil tillage, which provides a variety of microhabitats and potential food for birds. Water management in rice fields creates conditions ranging from saturated mud flats to shallow (water, thereby attracting different guilds of birds. Grain not collected during harvest (i.e. waste rice) is typically the most abundant potential food of birds in rice fields, with estimates of seed mass from North America ranging from 66672 kg/ha. Although initially abundant after harvest, waste rice availability can be temporally limited. Few abundance estimates for other foods, such as vertebrate prey or forage vegetation, exist for rice fields. Outside North America, Europe and Japan, little is known about abundance and importance of any avian food in rice fields. Currently, flooding rice fields after harvest is the best known management practice to attract and benefit birds. Studies from North America indicate specific agricultural practices (e.g. burning stubble) may increase use and improve access to food resources. Evaluating and implementing management practices that are ecologically sustainable, increase food for birds and are agronomically beneficial should be global priorities to integrate rice production and avian conservation. Finally, land area devoted to rice agriculture appears to be stable in the USA, declining in China, and largely unquantified in many regions. Monitoring trends in riceland area may provide information to guide avian conservation planning in rice-agriculture ecosystems.
Sogge, M.K.; Sferra, S.J.; Paxton, E.H.
Exotic vegetation has become a major habitat component in many ecosystems around the world, sometimes dramatically changing the vegetation community structure and composition. In the southwestern United States, riparian ecosystems are undergoing major changes in part due to the establishment and spread of the exotic Tamarix (saltcedar, tamarisk). There are concerns about the suitability of Tamarix as habitat for birds. Although Tamarix habitats tend to support fewer species and individuals than native habitats, Arizona Breeding Bird Atlas data and Birds of North America accounts show that 49 species use Tamarix as breeding habitat. Importantly, the relative use of Tamarix and its quality as habitat vary substantially by geographic location and bird species. Few studies have examined how breeding in Tamarix actually affects bird survivorship and productivity; recent research on Southwestern Willow Flycatchers has found no negative effects from breeding in Tamarix habitats. Therefore, the ecological benefits and costs of Tamarix control are difficult to predict and are likely to be species specific and site specific. Given the likelihood that high-quality native riparian vegetation will not develop at all Tamarix control sites, restoration projects that remove Tamarix but do not assure replacement by high-quality native habitat have the potential to reduce the net riparian habitat value for some local or regional bird populations. Therefore, an assessment of potential negative impacts is important in deciding if exotic control should be conducted. In addition, measurable project objectives, appropriate control and restoration techniques, and robust monitoring are all critical to effective restoration planning and execution. ?? 2008 Society for Ecological Restoration International.
Moorman, C.E.; D.C. Guynn, Jr.
Research on the effects of creating group-selection openings of various sizes on breeding birds habitat use in a bottomland hardwood forest of the Upper Coastal Plain of South Carolina. Creation of 0.5-ha group selection openings in southern bottomland forests should provide breeding habitat for some field-edge species in gaps and habitat for forest-interior species and canopy-dwelling forest-edge species between gaps provided that enough mature forest is made available.
Full Text Available This paper focuses on using data mining technology to efficiently and accurately discover habitats and stopovers of migratory birds. The three methods we used are as follows: 1. a density-based clustering method, detecting stopovers of birds during their migration through density-based clustering of location points; 2. A location histories parser method, detecting areas that have been overstayed by migratory birds during a set time period by setting time and distance thresholds; and 3. A time-parameterized line segment clustering method, clustering directed line segments to analyze shared segments of migratory pathways of different migratory birds and discover the habitats and stopovers of these birds. Finally, we analyzed the migration data of the bar-headed goose in the Qinghai Lake Area through the three above methods and verified the effectiveness of the three methods and, by comparison, identified the scope and context of the use of these three methods respectively.
The biodiversity of Akagera National Park (ANP), Rwanda, has reportedly been declining since 1990 due to conflict and war in the country between 1990 and 1994. In this paper, we describe bird diversity in the post-war recovery period. We used systematic plots, point counts and presence–absence surveys to estimate bird ...
Davis, J. Brian; Webb, Elisabeth B.; Kaminski, Richard M.; Barbour, Philip J.; Vilella, Francisco
Following the Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico in April 2010, the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) established and funded the Migratory Bird Habitat Initiative (MBHI), with the goal of improving and increasing wetland habitats on private lands to benefit wintering and migrating waterbirds displaced from oil-impacted coastal wetlands. The NRCS and conservation partners provided financial and technical assistance to landowners and managers of sites enrolled in various conservation easement programs, and incorporated approximately 190,000 ha of wetlands and agricultural lands in the Mississippi Alluvial Valley (MAV) and Gulf Coast regions in the MBHI. In fall 2010, the NRCS worked with scientists and graduate students from three universities and various conservation agencies to design and implement landscape-scale evaluations of (1) the use of MBHI-managed wetlands and comparable non-MBHI wetlands by Charadriiformes(shorebirds), Anseriformes (waterfowl), and other waterbirds; and (2) the relative effectiveness of different MBHI practices for providing habitat and food resources for migrating, resident, and wintering waterbirds. In this paper, we describe the scientific framework designed to evaluate the MBHI in improving waterbird habitats on private lands in the MAV, the Gulf Coast Prairies in Louisiana and Texas, and Gulf coastal wetlands of Mississippi and Alabama. The results of our evaluation will enhance our understanding of the influence of MBHI, other Farm Bill Conservation Initiative managed lands (e.g., Wetland Reserve Program), and selected agricultural working lands (e.g., Oryza sativa L. [Rice] fields in southern Louisiana and Texas) on wintering and migrating waterbirds. A proactive approach that uses science to evaluate governmental conservation programs is relevant and can inform development of meaningful public policy that likely will be needed for effective delivery of future conservation programs and to justify
Full Text Available Even with global support for tiger (Panthera tigris conservation their survival is threatened by poaching, habitat loss and isolation. Currently about 3,000 wild tigers persist in small fragmented populations within seven percent of their historic range. Identifying and securing habitat linkages that connect source populations for maintaining landscape-level gene flow is an important long-term conservation strategy for endangered carnivores. However, habitat corridors that link regional tiger populations are often lost to development projects due to lack of objective evidence on their importance. Here, we use individual based genetic analysis in combination with landscape permeability models to identify and prioritize movement corridors across seven tiger populations within the Central Indian Landscape. By using a panel of 11 microsatellites we identified 169 individual tigers from 587 scat and 17 tissue samples. We detected four genetic clusters within Central India with limited gene flow among three of them. Bayesian and likelihood analyses identified 17 tigers as having recent immigrant ancestry. Spatially explicit tiger occupancy obtained from extensive landscape-scale surveys across 76,913 km(2 of forest habitat was found to be only 21,290 km(2. After accounting for detection bias, the covariates that best explained tiger occupancy were large, remote, dense forest patches; large ungulate abundance, and low human footprint. We used tiger occupancy probability to parameterize habitat permeability for modeling habitat linkages using least-cost and circuit theory pathway analyses. Pairwise genetic differences (FST between populations were better explained by modeled linkage costs (r>0.5, p<0.05 compared to Euclidean distances, which was in consonance with observed habitat fragmentation. The results of our study highlight that many corridors may still be functional as there is evidence of contemporary migration. Conservation efforts should
Yumnam, Bibek; Jhala, Yadvendradev V.; Qureshi, Qamar; Maldonado, Jesus E.; Gopal, Rajesh; Saini, Swati; Srinivas, Y.; Fleischer, Robert C.
Even with global support for tiger (Panthera tigris) conservation their survival is threatened by poaching, habitat loss and isolation. Currently about 3,000 wild tigers persist in small fragmented populations within seven percent of their historic range. Identifying and securing habitat linkages that connect source populations for maintaining landscape-level gene flow is an important long-term conservation strategy for endangered carnivores. However, habitat corridors that link regional tiger populations are often lost to development projects due to lack of objective evidence on their importance. Here, we use individual based genetic analysis in combination with landscape permeability models to identify and prioritize movement corridors across seven tiger populations within the Central Indian Landscape. By using a panel of 11 microsatellites we identified 169 individual tigers from 587 scat and 17 tissue samples. We detected four genetic clusters within Central India with limited gene flow among three of them. Bayesian and likelihood analyses identified 17 tigers as having recent immigrant ancestry. Spatially explicit tiger occupancy obtained from extensive landscape-scale surveys across 76,913 km2 of forest habitat was found to be only 21,290 km2. After accounting for detection bias, the covariates that best explained tiger occupancy were large, remote, dense forest patches; large ungulate abundance, and low human footprint. We used tiger occupancy probability to parameterize habitat permeability for modeling habitat linkages using least-cost and circuit theory pathway analyses. Pairwise genetic differences (F ST) between populations were better explained by modeled linkage costs (r>0.5, p<0.05) compared to Euclidean distances, which was in consonance with observed habitat fragmentation. The results of our study highlight that many corridors may still be functional as there is evidence of contemporary migration. Conservation efforts should provide legal status to
Yumnam, Bibek; Jhala, Yadvendradev V; Qureshi, Qamar; Maldonado, Jesus E; Gopal, Rajesh; Saini, Swati; Srinivas, Y; Fleischer, Robert C
Even with global support for tiger (Panthera tigris) conservation their survival is threatened by poaching, habitat loss and isolation. Currently about 3,000 wild tigers persist in small fragmented populations within seven percent of their historic range. Identifying and securing habitat linkages that connect source populations for maintaining landscape-level gene flow is an important long-term conservation strategy for endangered carnivores. However, habitat corridors that link regional tiger populations are often lost to development projects due to lack of objective evidence on their importance. Here, we use individual based genetic analysis in combination with landscape permeability models to identify and prioritize movement corridors across seven tiger populations within the Central Indian Landscape. By using a panel of 11 microsatellites we identified 169 individual tigers from 587 scat and 17 tissue samples. We detected four genetic clusters within Central India with limited gene flow among three of them. Bayesian and likelihood analyses identified 17 tigers as having recent immigrant ancestry. Spatially explicit tiger occupancy obtained from extensive landscape-scale surveys across 76,913 km(2) of forest habitat was found to be only 21,290 km(2). After accounting for detection bias, the covariates that best explained tiger occupancy were large, remote, dense forest patches; large ungulate abundance, and low human footprint. We used tiger occupancy probability to parameterize habitat permeability for modeling habitat linkages using least-cost and circuit theory pathway analyses. Pairwise genetic differences (FST) between populations were better explained by modeled linkage costs (r>0.5, p<0.05) compared to Euclidean distances, which was in consonance with observed habitat fragmentation. The results of our study highlight that many corridors may still be functional as there is evidence of contemporary migration. Conservation efforts should provide legal status
Full Text Available Subasinghe K, Sumanapala AP. 2014. Biological and functional diversity of bird communities in natural and human modified habitats in Northern Flank of Knuckles Mountain Forest Range, Sri Lanka. Biodiversitas 15: 200-205. The Knuckles Mountain Forest Range (KMFR has a complex mosaic of natural and human modified habitats and the contribution of these habitats to the biological and functional diversities has not been deeply studied. Present study investigated both of these diversities in five habitat types (two natural habitats: Sub-montane forest and Pitawala Patana grassland; three modified habitats: cardamom, pinus and abandoned tea plantations in Northern Flank of KMFR using birds as the indicator group. Bird communities were surveyed using point count method. A total of 1,150 individuals belonging to 56 species were observed. The highest species richness was reported from the cardamom plantation where as sub-montane forest had the highest feeding guild diversity in terms of Shannon Weiner index. The abandoned tea plantation and the Pitawala Patana grasslands with fairly open habitats, showed relatively lower levels of feeding guild diversities. It is clear that the structurally complex habitats contribute more to the area’s biological and functional diversities and need to be taken into consideration when developing conservation plans.
Fuhlendorf, S.D.; Harrell, W.C.; Engle, David M.; Hamilton, R.G.; Davis, C.A.; Leslie, David M.
In tallgrass prairie, disturbances such as grazing and fire can generate patchiness across the landscape, contributing to a shifting mosaic that presumably enhances biodiversity. Grassland birds evolved within the context of this shifting mosaic, with some species restricted to one or two patch types created under spatially and temporally distinct disturbance regimes. Thus, management-driven reductions in heterogeneity may be partly responsible for declines in numbers of grassland birds. We experimentally altered spatial heterogeneity of vegetation structure within a tallgrass prairie by varying the spatial and temporal extent of fire and by allowing grazing animals to move freely among burned and unburned patches (patch treatment). We contrasted this disturbance regime with traditional agricultural management of the region that promotes homogeneity (traditional treatment). We monitored grassland bird abundance during the breeding seasons of 2001-2003 to determine the influence of altered spatial heterogeneity on the grassland bird community. Focal disturbances of patch burning and grazing that shifted through the landscape over several years resulted in a more heterogeneous pattern of vegetation than uniform application of fire and grazing. Greater spatial heterogeneity in vegetation provided greater variability in the grassland bird community. Some bird species occurred in greatest abundance within focally disturbed patches, while others occurred in relatively undisturbed patches in our patch treatment. Henslow's Sparrow, a declining species, occurred only within the patch treatment. Upland Sandpiper and some other species were more abundant on recently disturbed patches within the same treatment. The patch burn treatment created the entire gradient of vegetation structure required to maintain a suite of grassland bird species that differ in habitat preferences. Our study demonstrated that increasing spatial and temporal heterogeneity of disturbance in grasslands
Franklin, Janet; Regan, Helen M; Hierl, Lauren A; Deutschman, Douglas H; Johnson, Brenda S; Winchell, Clark S
Despite numerous recommendations for various aspects of the design and monitoring of habitat conservation plans, there remains a need to synthesize existing guidelines into a comprehensive scheme and apply it to real-world conservation programs. We review tools for systematic conservation planning and elements for designing and implementing ecological monitoring in an adaptive management context. We apply principles of monitoring design to the San Diego Multiple Species Conservation Program (MSCP) in California, USA--one of the first multispecies habitat conservation plans, located in a landscape where high biodiversity and urban development converge. Tools for spatial conservation planning are aimed to conserve biodiversity, often in the context of a limited budget. In practice, these methods may not accommodate legislative mandates, budgetary uncertainties, and the range of implementation mechanisms available across consortia of stakeholders. Once a reserve is implemented, the question becomes whether it is effective at conserving biodiversity, and if not, what actions are required to make it effective. In monitoring plan development, status and threats should be used to prioritize species and communities that require management action to ensure their persistence. Conceptual models documenting the state of knowledge of the system should highlight the main drivers affecting status and trends of species or communities. Monitoring strategies require scientifically justified decisions based on sampling, response, and data design. Because the framework illustrated here tackles multiple species, communities, and threats at the urban-wildland interface, it will have utility for ecosystem managers struggling to design monitoring programs.
Susan K. Skagen; Stephen Brown; Rex Johnson
Shorebird migration strategies vary by species, migration distance and route, time of year, and resources at staging and stopover sites. The Western Hemisphere Shorebird Reserve Network has been highly successful in the identification, designation, and protection of important migration habitats for many species that stage in traditional areas. Recently, conservation...
Forbes, Samantha J; Northfield, Tobin D
The unique benefits of wild pollinators to the productivity of agricultural crops have become increasingly recognized in recent decades. However, declines in populations of wild pollinator species, largely driven by the conversion of natural habitat to agricultural land and broad-spectrum pesticide use often lead reductions in the provision of pollination services and crop production. With growing evidence that targeted pollinator conservation improves crop yield and/or quality, particularly for pollination specialist crops, efforts are increasing to substitute agriculturally intensive practices with those that alleviate some of the negative impacts of agriculture on pollinators and the pollination services they provide, in part through the provision of suitable pollinator habitat. Further, similarities between the responses of some pollinators and predators to habitat management suggest that efforts to conserve pollinators may also encourage predator densities. We evaluated the effects of one habitat management practice, the addition of cacao fruit husks to a monoculture cacao farm, on the provision of pollination services and the densities of two groups of entomophagous predators. We also evaluated the impacts of cacao fruit husk addition on pollen limitation, by crossing this habitat manipulation with pollen supplementation treatments. The addition of cacao fruit husks increased the number of fruits per tree and along with hand pollination treatments, increased final yields indicating a promotion of the pollination ecosystem service provided by the specialist pollinators, midges. We also found that cacao fruit husk addition increased the densities of two predator groups, spiders and skinks. Further, the conservation of these predators did not inhibit pollination through pollinator capture or deterrence. The findings show that, with moderate habitat management, both pollinator and predator conservation can be compatible goals within a highly specialized plant
Full Text Available Research on variation in bill morphology has focused on the role of diet. Bills have other functions, however, including a role in heat and water balance. The role of the bill in heat loss may be particularly important in birds where water is limiting. Song sparrows localized in coastal dunes and salt marsh edge (Melospiza melodia atlantica are similar in size to, but have bills with a 17% greater surface area than, those that live in mesic habitats (M. m. melodia, a pattern shared with other coastal sparrows. We tested the hypotheses that sparrows can use their bills to dissipate "dry" heat, and that heat loss from the bill is higher in M. m. atlantica than M. m. melodia, which would indicate a role of heat loss and water conservation in selection for bill size.Bill, tarsus, and body surface temperatures were measured using thermal imaging of sparrows exposed to temperatures from 15-37°C and combined with surface area and physical modeling to estimate the contribution of each body part to total heat loss. Song sparrow bills averaged 5-10°C hotter than ambient. The bill of M. m atlantica dissipated up to 33% more heat and 38% greater proportion of total heat than that of M. m. melodia. This could potentially reduce water loss requirements by approximately 7.7%.This >30% higher heat loss in the bill of M. m. atlantica is independent of evaporative water loss and thus could play an important role in the water balance of sparrows occupying the hot and exposed dune/salt marsh environments during the summer. Heat loss capacity and water conservation could play an important role in the selection for bill size differences between bird populations and should be considered along with trophic adaptations when studying variation in bill size.
Full Text Available BACKGROUND: The ratio of habitat generalists to specialists in birds has been suggested as a good indicator of ecosystem changes due to e.g. climate change and other anthropogenic perturbations. Most studies focusing on this functional component of biodiversity originate, however, from temperate regions. The Eurasian Arctic tundra is currently experiencing an unprecedented combination of climate change, change in grazing pressure by domestic reindeer and growing human activity. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Here we monitored bird communities in a tundra landscape harbouring shrub and open habitats in order to analyse bird habitat relationships and quantify habitat specialization. We used ordination methods to analyse habitat associations and estimated the proportions of specialists in each of the main habitats. Correspondence Analysis identified three main bird communities, inhabiting upland, lowland and dense willow shrubs. We documented a stable structure of communities despite large multiannual variations of bird density (from 90 to 175 pairs/km(2. Willow shrub thickets were a hotspot for bird density, but not for species richness. The thickets hosted many specialized species whose main distribution area was south of the tundra. CONCLUSION/SIGNIFICANCE: If current arctic changes result in a shrubification of the landscape as many studies suggested, we would expect an increase in the overall bird abundance together with an increase of local specialists, since they are associated with willow thickets. The majority of these species have a southern origin and their increase in abundance would represent a strengthening of the boreal component in the southern tundra, perhaps at the expense of species typical of the subarctic zone, which appear to be generalists within this zone.
Sokolov, Vasiliy; Ehrich, Dorothée; Yoccoz, Nigel G.; Sokolov, Alexander; Lecomte, Nicolas
Background The ratio of habitat generalists to specialists in birds has been suggested as a good indicator of ecosystem changes due to e.g. climate change and other anthropogenic perturbations. Most studies focusing on this functional component of biodiversity originate, however, from temperate regions. The Eurasian Arctic tundra is currently experiencing an unprecedented combination of climate change, change in grazing pressure by domestic reindeer and growing human activity. Methodology/Principal Findings Here we monitored bird communities in a tundra landscape harbouring shrub and open habitats in order to analyse bird habitat relationships and quantify habitat specialization. We used ordination methods to analyse habitat associations and estimated the proportions of specialists in each of the main habitats. Correspondence Analysis identified three main bird communities, inhabiting upland, lowland and dense willow shrubs. We documented a stable structure of communities despite large multiannual variations of bird density (from 90 to 175 pairs/km2). Willow shrub thickets were a hotspot for bird density, but not for species richness. The thickets hosted many specialized species whose main distribution area was south of the tundra. Conclusion/Significance If current arctic changes result in a shrubification of the landscape as many studies suggested, we would expect an increase in the overall bird abundance together with an increase of local specialists, since they are associated with willow thickets. The majority of these species have a southern origin and their increase in abundance would represent a strengthening of the boreal component in the southern tundra, perhaps at the expense of species typical of the subarctic zone, which appear to be generalists within this zone. PMID:23239978
Oh, Beverly Z L; Sequeira, Ana M M; Meekan, Mark G; Ruppert, Jonathan L W; Meeuwig, Jessica J
Fishing and habitat degradation have increased the extinction risk of sharks, and conservation strategies recognize that survival of juveniles is critical for the effective management of shark populations. Despite the rapid expansion of marine protected areas (MPAs) globally, the paucity of shark-monitoring data on large scales (100s-1000s km) means that the effectiveness of MPAs in halting shark declines remains unclear. Using data collected by baited remote underwater video systems (BRUVS) in northwestern Australia, we developed generalized linear models to elucidate the ecological drivers of habitat suitability for juvenile sharks. We assessed occurrence patterns at the order and species levels. We included all juvenile sharks sampled and the 3 most abundant species sampled separately (grey reef [Carcharhinus amblyrhynchos], sandbar [Carcharhinus plumbeus], and whitetip reef sharks [Triaenodon obesus]). We predicted the occurrence of juvenile sharks across 490,515 km 2 of coastal waters and quantified the representation of highly suitable habitats within MPAs. Our species-level models had higher accuracy (ĸ ≥ 0.69) and deviance explained (≥48%) than our order-level model (ĸ = 0.36 and deviance explained of 10%). Maps of predicted occurrence revealed different species-specific patterns of highly suitable habitat. These differences likely reflect different physiological or resource requirements between individual species and validate concerns over the utility of conservation targets based on aggregate species groups as opposed to a species-focused approach. Highly suitable habitats were poorly represented in MPAs with the most restrictions on extractive activities. This spatial mismatch possibly indicates a lack of explicit conservation targets and information on species distribution during the planning process. Non-extractive BRUVS provided a useful platform for building the suitability models across large scales to assist conservation planning across
Mark F Hulme
Full Text Available Reconciling the aims of feeding an ever more demanding human population and conserving biodiversity is a difficult challenge. Here, we explore potential solutions by assessing whether land sparing (farming for high yield, potentially enabling the protection of non-farmland habitat, land sharing (lower yielding farming with more biodiversity within farmland or a mixed strategy would result in better bird conservation outcomes for a specified level of agricultural production. We surveyed forest and farmland study areas in southern Uganda, measuring the population density of 256 bird species and agricultural yield: food energy and gross income. Parametric non-linear functions relating density to yield were fitted. Species were identified as "winners" (total population size always at least as great with agriculture present as without it or "losers" (total population sometimes or always reduced with agriculture present for a range of targets for total agricultural production. For each target we determined whether each species would be predicted to have a higher total population with land sparing, land sharing or with any intermediate level of sparing at an intermediate yield. We found that most species were expected to have their highest total populations with land sparing, particularly loser species and species with small global range sizes. Hence, more species would benefit from high-yield farming if used as part of a strategy to reduce forest loss than from low-yield farming and land sharing, as has been found in Ghana and India in a previous study. We caution against advocacy for high-yield farming alone as a means to deliver land sparing if it is done without strong protection for natural habitats, other ecosystem services and social welfare. Instead, we suggest that conservationists explore how conservation and agricultural policies can be better integrated to deliver land sparing by, for example, combining land-use planning and agronomic
Hulme, Mark F; Vickery, Juliet A; Green, Rhys E; Phalan, Ben; Chamberlain, Dan E; Pomeroy, Derek E; Nalwanga, Dianah; Mushabe, David; Katebaka, Raymond; Bolwig, Simon; Atkinson, Philip W
Reconciling the aims of feeding an ever more demanding human population and conserving biodiversity is a difficult challenge. Here, we explore potential solutions by assessing whether land sparing (farming for high yield, potentially enabling the protection of non-farmland habitat), land sharing (lower yielding farming with more biodiversity within farmland) or a mixed strategy would result in better bird conservation outcomes for a specified level of agricultural production. We surveyed forest and farmland study areas in southern Uganda, measuring the population density of 256 bird species and agricultural yield: food energy and gross income. Parametric non-linear functions relating density to yield were fitted. Species were identified as "winners" (total population size always at least as great with agriculture present as without it) or "losers" (total population sometimes or always reduced with agriculture present) for a range of targets for total agricultural production. For each target we determined whether each species would be predicted to have a higher total population with land sparing, land sharing or with any intermediate level of sparing at an intermediate yield. We found that most species were expected to have their highest total populations with land sparing, particularly loser species and species with small global range sizes. Hence, more species would benefit from high-yield farming if used as part of a strategy to reduce forest loss than from low-yield farming and land sharing, as has been found in Ghana and India in a previous study. We caution against advocacy for high-yield farming alone as a means to deliver land sparing if it is done without strong protection for natural habitats, other ecosystem services and social welfare. Instead, we suggest that conservationists explore how conservation and agricultural policies can be better integrated to deliver land sparing by, for example, combining land-use planning and agronomic support for small
Simon A. Tamungang
Full Text Available The wild Grey Parrot Psittacus erithacus Linnaeus suffers from many habitat use challenges in the wake of extensive deforestation in its endemic range of West and Central African rainforests. To determine effects of these challenges on the bird species, seasonal densities of the Grey Parrot were determined using line transects in major heterogeneous vegetation types in the Korup Rainforest, south-western Cameroon. Results of the study highlight habitat preferences of this species on a seasonal base and under different situations of human activity intensity in the landscape. This information can be used to understand the causes of changes in the distribution and abundance of endangered species and also to determine sustainable conservation strategies. It is concluded that the parrot needs diverse vegetation types for survival in the wild state, as it depends on specific tree species for specific habitat resources such as food, roosts, security, and nests at specific periods of the year. Hence, the continuous survival of the Grey Parrot in the range states is not certain, if sustainable measures are not taken to conserve the parrot and its habitat resources both in and outside protected areas.
Full Text Available The Himalaya region of Nepal encompasses significant habitats for several endangered species, among them the brown bear (Ursus arctos pruinosus. However, owing to the remoteness of the region and a dearth of research, knowledge on the conservation status, habitat and population size of this species is lacking. Our aim in this paper is to report a habitat survey designed to assess the distribution and habitat characteristics of the brown bear in the Nepalese Himalaya, and to summarize a conservation action plan for the species devised at a pair of recent workshops held in Nepal. Results of our survey showed that brown bear were potentially distributed between 3800 m and 5500 m in the high mountainous region of Nepal, across an area of 4037 km2 between the eastern border of Shey Phoksundo National Park (SPNP and the Manasalu Conservation Area (MCA. Of that area, 2066 km2 lie inside the protected area (350 km2 in the MCA; 1716 km2 in the Annapurna Conservation Area and 48% (1917 km2 lies outside the protected area in the Dolpa district. Furthermore, 37% of brown bear habitat also forms a potential habitat for blue sheep (or bharal, Pseudois nayaur, and 17% of these habitats is used by livestock, suggesting a significant potential for resource competition. Several plant species continue to be uprooted by local people for fuel wood. Based on the results of our field survey combined with consultations with local communities and scientists, we propose that government and non-government organizations should implement a three-stage program of conservation activities for the brown bear. This program should: (a Detail research activities in and outside the protected area of Nepal; (b support livelihood and conservation awareness at local and national levels; and (c strengthen local capacity and reduce human-wildlife conflict in the region.
sagebrush ( Artemisia spp.) in the western United States represent one of the nation’s most imperiled ecosystems due to extensive habitat loss and habitat...hyemalis 6 42 15 63 European Starling Sturnus vulgaris 1 1 17 Table 3: Continued Species
Ruth, Janet M.; Barrow, Wylie C.; Sojda, Richard S.; Dawson, Deanna K.; Diehl, Robert H.; Manville, Albert; Green, Michael T.; Krueper, David J.; Johnston, Scott
Migratory birds face many changes to the landscapes they traverse and the habitats they use. Wind turbines and communications towers, which pose hazards to birds and bats in flight, are being erected or proposed across the United States and offshore. Human activities can also destroy or threaten habitats critical to birds during migratory passage, and climate change appears to be altering migratory patterns. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) and other agencies are under increasing pressure to identify and evaluate movement patterns and habitats used during migration and other times.
Horton, Kyle G; Van Doren, Benjamin M; Stepanian, Phillip M; Farnsworth, Andrew; Kelly, Jeffrey F
The lower atmosphere (i.e. aerosphere) is critical habitat for migrant birds. This habitat is vast and little is known about the spatio-temporal patterns of distribution and abundance of migrants in it. Increased human encroachment into the aerosphere makes understanding where and when migratory birds use this airspace a key to reducing human-wildlife conflicts. We use weather surveillance radar to describe large-scale height distributions of nocturnally migrating birds and interpret these distributions as aggregate habitat selection behaviours of individual birds. As such, we detail wind cues that influence selection of flight heights. Using six radars in the eastern USA during the spring (2013-2015) and autumn (2013 and 2014), we found migrants tended to adjust their heights according to favourable wind profit. We found that migrants' flight altitudes correlated most closely with the altitude of maximum wind profit; however, absolute differences in flight heights and height of maximum wind profit were large. Migrants tended to fly slightly higher at inland sites compared with coastal sites during spring, but not during autumn. Migration activity was greater at coastal sites during autumn, but not during spring. This characterization of bird migration represents a critical advance in our understanding of migrant distributions in flight and a new window into habitat selection behaviours. © 2016 The Author(s).
Borges, Friederike; Glemnitz, Michael; Schultz, Alfred; Stachow, Ulrich
Many of the processes behind the decline of farmland birds can be related to modifications in landscape structure (composition and configuration), which can partly be expressed quantitatively with measurable or computable indices, i.e. landscape metrics. This paper aims to identify statistical relationships between the occurrence of birds and the landscape structure. We present a method that combines two comprehensive procedures: the "landscape-centred approach" and "guild classification". Our study is based on more than 20,000 individual bird observations based on a 4-year bird monitoring approach in a typical agricultural area in the north-eastern German lowlands. Five characteristic bird guilds, each with three characteristic species, are defined for the typical habitat types of that area: farmland, grassland, hedgerow, forest and settlement. The suitability of each sample plot for each guild is indicated by the level of persistence (LOP) of occurrence of three respective species. Thus, the sample plots can be classified as "preferred" or "less preferred" depending on the lower and upper quartiles of the LOP values. The landscape structure is characterized by 16 different landscape metrics expressing various aspects of landscape composition and configuration. For each guild, the three landscape metrics with the strongest rank correlation with the LOP values and that are not mutually dependent were identified. For four of the bird guilds, the classification success was better than 80%, compared with only 66% for the grassland bird guild. A subset of six landscape metrics proved to be the most meaningful and sufficiently classified the sample areas with respect to bird guild suitability. In addition, derived logistic functions allowed the production of guild-specific habitat suitability maps for the whole landscape. The analytical results show that the proposed approach is appropriate to assess the habitat suitability of agricultural landscapes for characteristic
Dean E. Medin; Bruce L. Welch; Warren P. Clary
Bird censuses were taken on 11 study plots along an elevational gradient ranging from 5,250 to 11,400 feet. Each plot represented a different vegetative type or zone: shadscale, shadscale-Wyoming big sagebrush, Wyoming big sagebrush, Wyoming big sagebrush-pinyon/juniper, pinyon/juniper, pinyon/juniper-mountain big sagebrush, mountain big sagebrush, mountain big...
We investigated the influence of forest fragment size and isolation on the bird assemblages in the species- and endemic-rich sand forests of the Maputaland Centre of Endemism, southern Mozambique. Point-centre surveys were conducted across 12 sand forest patches that varied in size and isolation. Patch size and ...
Steven, Rochelle; Castley, J Guy; Buckley, Ralf
Many bird populations worldwide are at risk of extinction, and rely heavily on protected area networks for their continued conservation. Tourism to these areas contributes to conservation by generating revenue for management. Here we quantify the contribution of tourism revenue for bird species in the IUCN Red List, using a simple accounting method. Relevant data are available for 90 (16%) of the 562 critically endangered and endangered species. Contributions of tourism to bird conservation are highest, 10-64%, in South America, Africa, and their neighbouring islands. Critically endangered bird species rely on tourism more heavily than endangered species (pmanagement budgets by promoting birdwatching tourism specifically.
Sabatier, R; Teillard, F; Rossing, W A H; Doyen, L; Tichit, M
In European grassland landscapes, grazing and mowing play a key role for the maintenance of high-quality habitats that host important bird populations. As grasslands are also key resources for cattle feeding, there is a need to develop management strategies that achieve the double objective of production and biodiversity conservation. The objective of this study was to use a modelling approach to generate recognisable patterns of bird dynamics in farms composed of different land use proportions, and to compare their production and ecological dimensions. We developed a dynamic model, which linked grassland management to bird population dynamics at the field and farm levels. The model was parameterised for two types of suckling farms corresponding to contrasting levels of grassland intensification and for two bird species of high conservation value. A viability algorithm was used to define and assess viable management strategies for production and ecological performance so as to draw the shape of the relationship between both types of performances for the two types of farms. Our results indicated that, at the farm level, there was a farming system effect with a negative and non-linear relationship linking performance. Improving bird population maintenance was less costly in extensive farms compared with intensive farms. At the field level, the model predicted the timing and intensity of land use, maximising either production or ecological performance. The results suggested that multi-objective grassland management would benefit from public policies that consider levels of organisation higher than the field level, such as the farm or the landscape.
Migration routes used by Nearctic migrant birds can cover great distances; they also differ among species, within species, and between years and seasons. As a result, migration routes for an entire migratory avifauna can encompass broad geographic areas, making it impossible to protect continuous stretches of habitat sufficient to connect the wintering and breeding grounds for most species. Consequently, ways to enhance habitats converted for human use (i.e. for pasture, crop cultivation, human settlement) as stopover sites for migrants are especially important. Shelterbelts around pastures and fields, if planted with species targeted to support migrant (and resident) bird species that naturally occupy mature forest habitats and that are at least partially frugivorous, could be a powerful enhancement tool for such species, if the birds will enter the converted areas to feed. I tested this approach for Nearctic migrant birds during the spring migration through an area in Chiapas, Mexico. Mature forest tree species whose fruits are eaten by birds were surveyed. Based on life form, crop size and fruit characteristics, I selected three tree species for study: Cymbopetalum mayanum (Annonaceae), Bursera simaruba (Burseraceae) and Trophis racemosa (Moraceae). I compared the use of fruits of these species by migrants and residents in forest with their use of the fruits of isolated individuals of the same species in pasture and cropland. All three plant species were useful for enhancing converted habitats for forest-occupying spring migrants, although species differed in the degree to which they entered disturbed areas to feed on the fruits. These tree species could probably enhance habitats for migrants at sites throughout the natural geographic ranges of the plants; in other geographic areas for other target bird groups, other tree species might be more appropriate.
David I. King; Richard B. Chandler; Jeffrey M. Collins; Wayne R. Petersen; Thomas E. Lautzenheiser
Concern about declines in scrubâshrub bird populations has resulted in efforts to create and maintain habitat for these species. Vegetation within powerline corridors is managed to prevent contact of vegetation with transmission lines, and comprises approximately 2% of all of habitat for scrubâshrub birds in southern New England. Although previous studies have...
...] San Diego County Water Authority Subregional Natural Community Conservation Program/Habitat Conservation Plan, San Diego and Riverside Counties, CA; Final Environmental Impact Statement and Habitat... Program/Habitat Conservation Plan (NCCP/HCP), which the applicant has submitted with their incidental take...
...] DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration RIN 0648-XU69 Habitat Conservation... Environmental Impact Statement and Draft Habitat Conservation Plan, Including a Proposed Implementation... decisions by each agency. As required by the ESA, Kent has also prepared a Habitat Conservation Plan (Plan...
Jesus, Shayana DE; Pedro, Wagner A; Bispo, Arthur A
Understanding the factors that affect biodiversity is of central interest to ecology, and essential to species conservation and ecosystems management. We sampled bird communities in 17 forest fragments in the Cerrado biome, the Central-West region of Brazil. We aimed to know the communities structure pattern and the influence of geographical distance and environmental variables on them, along a gradient of fragmented habitats at both local and landscape scales. Eight structural variables of the fragments served as an environmental distance measurement at the local scale while five metrics served as an environmental distance measurement at the landscape scale. Species presence-absence data were used to calculate the dissimilarity index. Beta diversity was calculated using three indices (βsim, βnes and βsor), representing the spatial species turnover, nestedness and total beta diversity, respectively. Spatial species turnover was the predominant pattern in the structure of the communities. Variations in beta diversity were explained only by the environmental variables of the landscape with spatial configuration being more important than the composition. This fact indicates that, in Cerrado of Goiás avian communities structure, deterministic ecological processes associated to differences in species responses to landscape fragmentation are more important than stochastic processes driven by species dispersal.
Klug, Page E; Jackrel, Sara L; With, Kimberly A
Extremes in rangeland management, varying from too-frequent fire and intensive grazing to the suppression of both, threaten rangeland ecosystems worldwide. Intensive fire and grazing denude and homogenize vegetation whereas their suppression increases woody cover. Although habitat loss is implicated in grassland bird declines, degradation through intensive management or neglect also decreases breeding habitat and may reduce nesting success through increased rates of nest predation. Snakes are important nest predators, but little is known about how habitat use in snakes relates to predation risk for grassland birds nesting within tallgrass prairie subjected to different grazing and fire frequencies. We evaluated nest survival in the context of habitat used by nesting songbirds and two bird-eating snakes, the eastern yellowbelly racer Coluber constrictor flaviventris and Great Plains ratsnake Pantherophis emoryi. Daily nest survival rates decreased with increasing shrub cover and decreasing vegetation height, which characterize grasslands that have been neglected or intensively managed, respectively. Discriminant function analysis revealed that snake habitats were characterized by higher shrub cover, whereas successful nests were more likely to occur in areas with tall grass and forbs but reduced shrub cover. Because snakes often use shrub habitat, birds nesting in areas with increased shrub cover may be at higher risk of nest predation by snakes in addition to other predators known to use shrub habitat (e.g., mid-sized carnivores and avian predators). Depredated nests also occurred outside the discriminant space of the snakes, indicating that other predators (e.g., ground squirrels Spermophilus spp. and bullsnakes Pituophis catenifer) may be important in areas with denuded cover. Targeted removal of shrubs may increase nest success by minimizing the activity of nest predators attracted to shrub cover.
Susannah B. Lerman; Keith H. Nislow; David J. Nowak; Stephen DeStefano; David I. King; D. Todd. Jones-Farrand
The alteration of forest cover and the replacement of native vegetation with buildings, roads, exotic vegetation, and other urban features pose one of the greatest threats to global biodiversity. As more land becomes slated for urban development, identifying effective urban forest wildlife management tools becomes paramount to ensure the urban forest provides habitat...
Summary. Species-rich tropical forests are becoming increasingly fragmented, degraded and are declining due to human activities, threatening the survival of avian species that depend on them. We assessed the detrimental effects of human activities on birds and their habitats in and around North Nandi Forest.
Carlin C. Chandler; David I. King; Richard B. Chandler
Recent studies have highlighted the importance of the post-fledging period to bird populations, suggesting that the importance of this portion of the life cycle is equal to or greater than the nesting period. Nevertheless, few studies have compared abundance of forest nesting species between mature forest and early-successional habitats while controlling for...
Full Text Available Birds can be used indirectly or directly as a bioindicator of environment. Birds species living in six habitat types of PT Inhutani I Labanan Kalimantan Timur (namely, logged-over areas that has been exploited in 1976/1981 and 1981/1986, forested area that is being exploited in 1999/2000, primary forest that will be exploited in 2001/2002, Labanan Jaya Village inhabited in 1982/1983, and Segah-Malinau Transmigration Settlement inhabited in 1997/1998 were recorded with transect method (long of 3 km and within sighting distance of 25-50 m at 06.30-10.00 and 15.00-17.30 in both dry and rainy seasons. One hundred and two identified species belonging to 34 families and 6 unidentified species were found. Habitat types and seasons affect bird diversity (the number of species and abundance. Percent dissimilarity of birds between habitats ranged 0,53-0,95 in rainy season and 0,54-0,95 in dry season and between seasons ranged 0,50-0,80. Quantitative values have to be completed with qualitative consideration to assess habitat condition or changes.
Robin E. Russell; Victoria A. Saab; Jonathan G. Dudley
Models of habitat suitability in postfire landscapes are needed by land managers to make timely decisions regarding postfire timber harvest and other management activities. Many species of cavity-nesting birds are dependent on postfire landscapes for breeding and other aspects of their life history and are responsive to postfire management activities (e.g., timber...
Brian Kane; Paige S. Warren; Susannah B. Lerman
Trees in towns and cities provide habitat for wildlife. In particular, cavity-nesting birds nest in the deadand decayed stems and branches of these trees. The same dead and decayed stems and branches alsohave a greater likelihood of failure, which, in some circumstances, increases risk. We examined 1760trees in Baltimore, MD, USA and western MA, USA, assessing tree...
Tracey B. Champlin; John C. Kilgo; Christopher E. Moorman
Few attempts have been made to experimentally address the extent to which temporal or spatial variation in food availability influences avian habitat use. We used an experimental approach to investigate whether bird use differed between treated (arthropods reduced through insecticide application) and control (untreated) forest canopy gaps within a bottomland hardwood...
Angelica Estrada; Ian Davidson
The Important Bird Areas (IBA) Program was developed by BirdLife International as an approach to conserving birds and associated biodiversity throughout the world. The IBA program seeks to identify and protect a network of sites, at a biogeographic scale, which are critical for the long-term viability of naturally occurring bird populations for which site-based...
This session at the Wind Energy and Birds/Bats workshop was consisted of one paper presentation followed by a discussion/question and answer period. The session focused on discussion of non-collision impacts of wind energy projects on birds, primarily impacts to habitat. The presentation included information about the impacts of habitat fragmentation, disturbance, and site avoidance from wind turbines, as well as from roads, transmission facilities, and other related construction at wind project sites. Whether birds habituate to the presence of turbines and the influence of regional factors were also addressed. The paper given by Dale Strickland was titled ''Overview of Non-Collision Related Impacts from Wind Projects''.
Kristen E. Dybala
Full Text Available https://doi.org/10.15447/sfews.2017v15iss1art5Riparian ecosystems provide important ecosystem services and recreational opportunities for people, and habitat for wildlife. In California’s Central Valley, government agencies and private organizations are working together to protect and restore riparian ecosystems, and the Central Valley Joint Venture provides leadership in the formulation of goals and objectives for avian conservation in riparian ecosystems. We defined a long-term conservation goal as the establishment of riparian ecosystems that provide sufficient habitat to support genetically robust, self-sustaining, and resilient bird populations. To achieve this goal, we selected a suite of 12 breeding riparian landbird focal species as indicators of the state of riparian ecosystems in each of four major Central Valley planning regions. Using recent bird survey data, we estimated that over half of the regional focal species populations are currently small (< 10,000 and may be vulnerable to extirpation, and two species have steeply declining population trends. For each focal species in each region, we defined long-term (100-year population objectives that are intended to be conservation endpoints that we expect to meet the goal of genetically robust, self-sustaining, and resilient populations. We then estimated the long-term species density and riparian restoration objectives required to achieve the long-term population objectives. To track progress toward the long-term objectives, we propose short-term (10- year objectives, including the addition of 12,919 ha (31,923 ac of riparian vegetation in the Central Valley (by planning region: 3,390 ha in Sacramento, 2,390 ha in Yolo–Delta, 3,386 ha in San Joaquin, and 3,753 ha in Tulare. We expect that reaching these population, density, and habitat objectives through threat abatement, habitat restoration, and habitat enhancement will result in improvements to riparian ecosystem function and
Roberto A. Moreno-García
Full Text Available Aim of study: Our objective was to find habitat associations at a microhabitat level for two endemic birds in a Chilean temperate forest (biodiversity “hotspots”, in order to integrate biodiversity into forest planning.Area of study: Nahuelbuta Range, Chile.Material and methods: The two birds studied were Scelorchilus rubecula (Chucao Tapaculo and Scytalopus magellanicus (Magellanic Tapaculo, both belonging to the Rhinocryptidae family. Presence or absence of the two species was sampled in 57 census spots. Habitat was categorized according to presence/absence results. We assessed the influence of abiotic variables (altitude, exposure, slope and vegetation structure (percentage of understory cover, number of strata using a statistical cluster analysis.Main results: The two bird species selected the habitat. Most frequent presence was detected at a range of 600-1100 masl, but Magellanic Tapaculo was associated to more protected sites in terms of vegetation structure (50-75% for understory cover and 2-3 strata. Slope was the most relevant abiotic variable in habitat selection due to its linkage to vegetation traits in this area.Research highlights: Our results can help managers to integrate biodiversity (endemic fauna species into forest planning by preserving certain traits of the vegetation as part of a habitat (at a microhabitat level selected by the fauna species. That planning should be implemented with both an adequate wood harvesting cuts system and specific silvicultural treatments.Key words: Chile; Nahuelbuta; rhinocryptidae; cluster analysis; rorest planning; vegetation structure.
Allen, Arthur W.; Vandever, Mark W.
The following bibliography presents brief summaries of documents relevant to Conservation Reserve Program relations to wildlife habitat, habitat management in agriculturally dominated landscapes, and conservation policies potentially affecting wildlife habitats in agricultural ecosystems. Because the literature summaries furnished provide only sweeping overviews, users are urged to obtain and evaluate those papers appearing useful to obtain a more complete understanding of study findings and their implications to conservation in agricultural ecosystems. The bibliography contains references to reports that reach beyond topics that directly relate to the Conservation Reserve Program. Sections addressing grassland management and landowner surveys/opinions, for example, furnish information useful for enhancing development and administration of conservation policies affecting lands beyond those enrolled in conservation programs. Some sections of the bibliography (for example, agricultural conservation policy, economics, soils) are far from inclusive of all relevant material written on the subject. Hopefully, these sections will serve as fundamental introductions to related issues. In a few instances, references may be presented in more than one section of the bibliography. For example, individual papers specifically addressing both non-game and game birds are included in respective sections of the bibliography. Duplication of citations and associated notes has, however, been kept to a minimum.
Champlin, Tracey B.; Kilgo, John C.; Moorman, Christopher E.
Abstract. Few attempts have been made to experimentally address the extent to which temporal or spatial variation in food availability influences avian habitat use. We used an experimental approach to investigate whether bird use differed between treated (arthropods reduced through insecticide application) and control (untreated) forest canopy gaps within a bottomland hardwood forest in the Upper Coastal Plain of South Carolina, USA. Gaps were two- to three-year-old group selection timber harvest openings of three sizes (0.13, 0.26, and 0.50 ha). Our study was conducted during four bird use periods (spring migration, breeding, post-breeding, and fall migration) in 2002 and 2003. Arthropods were reduced in treated gaps by 68% in 2002 and 73% in 2003. We used mist-netting captures and foraging attack rates to assess the influence of arthropod abundance on avian habitat use. Evidence that birds responded to arthropod abundance was limited and inconsistent. In 2002, we generally captured more birds in treated gaps of the smallest size (0.13 ha) and fewer birds in treated gaps of the larger sizes. In 2003, we recorded few differences in the number of captures in treated and control gaps. Foraging attack rates generally were lower in treated than in control gaps, indicating that birds were able to adapt to the reduced food availability and remain in treated gaps. We conclude that arthropod abundance was not a proximate factor controlling whether forest birds used our gaps. The abundance of food resources may not be as important in determining avian habitat selection as previous research has indicated, at least for passerines in temperate subtropical regions.
Reynolds, R.E.; Shaffer, T.L.; Sauer, J.R.; Peterjohn, B.G.
During the past few decades numbers of some species of upland-nesting birds in North America have declined. Duck species such as mallard (Anas platyrhynchos), northern pintail (A. acuta) and blue-winged teal (A. discors) have declined since the early 1970s and have remained low since 1985 (Caithamer et al. 1993). Some grassland-dependent nonwaterfowl species also have declined since 1966, as indicated by the North American Breeding Bird Survey (BBS) (Robbins et al. 1986). For prairie-nesting ducks, population declines can be attributed mostly to low recruitment, partially as a result of low nest success. Klett et al. (1988) concluded that nest success (probability of ≥1 egg of clutch hatches) in much of the U.S. Prairie Pothole Region was inadequate to maintain populations of the five most common upland-nesting duck species studied, and that predators were the most important cause of nest failure. Over the years, as grassland areas have been converted to cropland, ducks have concentrated their nesting in the remaining areas of available habitat, where predators such as red fox (Vulpes vulpes), striped skunk (Mephitis mephitis) and badger (Taxidea taxus) forage (Cowardin et al. 1983). The reasons for declining populations of grassland nonwaterfowl birds are not clear but the loss of suitable grassland-nesting habitat probably is an important factor. Currently, approximately 95 percent of the land in North Dakota is used for agricultural purposes, of which over 60 percent is used for annual crop production (Haugse 1990). Of the grassland that remains, 95 percent is used for livestock production. This probably had a severe impact on grassland bird species that seek idle grass cover for nesting. The 1985 and 1990 U.S. Farm Bills include provisions under the Food Security Act to fund a cropland-idling program called the Conservation Reserve Program (CRP). Over 36 million acres have been enrolled nationwide in the CRP since 1985 (Osborn 1993), and up to 25 percent of
Powell, B.F.; Steidl, R.J.
Vegetation structure and floristic composition strongly influence the structure of bird communities. To assess the influence of vegetation and other environmental characteristics on songbirds, we quantified nest-site characteristics and reproductive success of a riparian songbird community in Arizona. Although we found interspecific variation in characteristics associated with nest sites, we identified two suites of species that chose sites with similar characteristics. These 'nest groups' were explained largely by nest height and characteristics of nest trees. Overall, nest success was low for songbirds in this community, and averaged 23%. The most common cause of nest failure was predation (81%), although brood parasitism by Brown-headed Cowbirds (Molothrus ater) was highest at nests of Bell's Vireos (Vireo bellii) (29%). No vegetation or environmental features were associated with the likelihood of cowbird parasitism for any species; nest success for Bell's Vireos was negatively associated with the amount of netleaf hackberry (Celtis reticulata) in the understory. Arizona sycamore (Platanus wrightii) and netleaf hackberry trees contained 41% and 17% of all nests, respectively, and therefore provide critically important nesting substrates for birds in this rare yet diverse vegetation community.
Fortini, Lucas B.; Vorsino, Adam E.; Amidon, Fred A.; Paxton, Eben H.; Jacobi, James D.
Hawaiian forest birds serve as an ideal group to explore the extent of climate change impacts on at-risk species. Avian malaria constrains many remaining Hawaiian forest bird species to high elevations where temperatures are too cool for malaria's life cycle and its principal mosquito vector. The impact of climate change on Hawaiian forest birds has been a recent focus of Hawaiian conservation biology, and has centered on the links between climate and avian malaria. To elucidate the differential impacts of projected climate shifts on species with known varying niches, disease resistance and tolerance, we use a comprehensive database of species sightings, regional climate projections and ensemble distribution models to project distribution shifts for all Hawaiian forest bird species. We illustrate that, under a likely scenario of continued disease-driven distribution limitation, all 10 species with highly reliable models (mostly narrow-ranged, single-island endemics) are expected to lose >50% of their range by 2100. Of those, three are expected to lose all range and three others are expected to lose >90% of their range. Projected range loss was smaller for several of the more widespread species; however improved data and models are necessary to refine future projections. Like other at-risk species, Hawaiian forest birds have specific habitat requirements that limit the possibility of range expansion for most species, as projected expansion is frequently in areas where forest habitat is presently not available (such as recent lava flows). Given the large projected range losses for all species, protecting high elevation forest alone is not an adequate long-term strategy for many species under climate change. We describe the types of additional conservation actions practitioners will likely need to consider, while providing results to help with such considerations.
Full Text Available Habitat features can have a profound effect on the nesting success of birds. Savannas are often managed with predators and large herbivores as priority species, with little thought to the many bird species that management decisions could affect. Using a data set spanning seven breeding seasons, we examined how nesting success of Southern Ground-hornbills (SGHs Bucorvus leadbeateri in the Kruger National Park varied as a result of various environmental and habitat factors within a radius of 3 km surrounding the nest site. Identifying which factors affect nesting success will allow for targeted management efforts to ensure the long-term survival of SGHs both within and outside of protected areas. Habitat structure and diversity of the vegetation surrounding the nest were the most influential factors on SGH nesting success. SGHs require open grassy areas for foraging and areas with large trees for nesting. Savanna habitat drivers such as elephants and fire should be managed to ensure that sufficient large trees are able to establish in the landscape and to control for bush encroachment. This is especially important in areas earmarked for SGH reintroductions. Nest sites of SGHs should be monitored to mitigate any structural changes in the habitat surrounding the nests. Nests should be modified or artificial nest sites provided, where nests have been damaged or lost, to ensure the continued presence of these birds in African savannas. Conservation implications: Habitat structure and diversity surrounding Southern Groundhornbill nests has a significant impact on their nesting success. This highlights the importance of monitoring vegetation change in savanna habitats where they occur. Management of savanna areas should take factors that influence bush encroachment, such as fire and elephants, into account to ensure the long-term persistence of these birds.
Fernando Moreira Fernandes
Full Text Available Dimorphandra wilsonii Rizzini is a rare species. Although cited as endemic to the Brazilian state of Minas Gerais, it has been recorded only for the municipalities of Paraopeba and Caetanópolis and therefore has not been extensively studied. This long-term, intensive survey, conducted from 2004 to 2012 in the central region of the state, was aimed at assessing its distribution, describing its habitat, and verifying its endemism, as well as assessing threats and determining its conservation status. Given the considerable size of the area to be studied and the difficulty of locating individuals of the species, we adopted popular participation as a complementary tool and we employed spatial distribution modeling. Communities were mobilized through the dissemination of print materials, and interviews were conducted. We visited 74 municipalities and addressed 900 people in search of this species. We found that D. wilsonii is endemic to the cerrado (savanna and Atlantic Forest in the central region of Minas Gerais, occurring in 16 municipalities. Is not present in any fully protected conservation area, and its population (fewer than 250 individuals is declining due to habitat destruction, caused mainly by agricultural/livestock and urban expansion, and its conservation status is "critically endangered".
Full Text Available Non-native species are frequently considered to influence urban assemblages. The grey squirrel Sciurus carolinensis is one such species that is widespread in the UK and is starting to spread across Europe; it predates birds' nests and can compete with birds for supplementary food. Using distance sampling across the urbanisation intensity gradient in Sheffield (UK we test whether urban grey squirrels influence avian species richness and density through nest predation and competition for supplementary food sources. We also assess how urban bird assemblages respond to supplementary feeding. We find that grey squirrels slightly reduced the abundance of breeding bird species most sensitive to squirrel nest predation by reducing the beneficial impact of woodland cover. There was no evidence that grey squirrel presence altered relationships between supplementary feeding and avian assemblage structure. This may be because, somewhat surprisingly, supplementary feeding was not associated with the richness or density of wintering bird assemblages. These associations were positive during the summer, supporting advocacy to feed birds during the breeding season and not just winter, but explanatory capacity was limited. The amount of green space and its quality, assessed as canopy cover, had a stronger influence on avian species richness and population size than the presence of grey squirrels and supplementary feeding stations. Urban bird populations are thus more likely to benefit from investment in improving the availability of high quality habitats than controlling squirrel populations or increased investment in supplementary feeding.
Pouwels, Rogier; Sierdsema, Henk; Foppen, Ruud P B; Henkens, René J H G; Opdam, Paul F M; van Eupen, Michiel
In protected areas managers have to achieve conservation targets while providing opportunities for outdoor recreation. This dual mandate causes conflicts in choosing between management options. Furthermore, the persistence of a protected species within the management unit often depends on how conservation areas elsewhere in the region are managed. We present an assessment procedure to guide groups of managers in aligning outdoor recreation and bird conservation targets for a regional scale protected area in the Netherlands. We used existing bird monitoring data and simulated visitor densities to statistically model the impact of outdoor recreation on bird densities. The models were used to extrapolate the local impacts for other parts of the area, but also to assess the impact on conservation targets at the regional level that were determined by the national government. The assessment shows impacts of outdoor recreation on Nightjar (Caprimulgus europaeus), Stonechat (Saxicola torquata) and Woodlark (Lullula arborea), reducing the regional population by up to 28 percent. The Woodlark population size was reduced below the level of the politically determined conservation target. The output of the regression models provides information that connects implications of local management to regional scale conservation targets. The spatial maps of bird densities can help in deciding where reducing visitor disturbance is expected to result in increasing bird populations, or where alternative measures, such as improving the habitat conditions, could be effective. We suggest that by using our assessment procedure collaborative decision making is facilitated. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Deikumah, Justus P; Konadu, Vida Asieduwaa; Kwafo, Richard
Studies on indigenous knowledge of fauna particular birds and its potential use in biodiversity conservation and management are rare globally. Characteristics used in creating indigenous bird names in many Ghanaian languages are undocumented. The main aim of this study is to answer the question "whether indigenous bird naming systems by the Akan tribes in Ghana follow scientific nomenclature and whether indigenous Akan bird knowledge can potentially help improve bird conservation efforts in Ghana. Purposive sampling technique was employed in selecting 10 respondents from 25 communities in the five administrative districts in the Central Region. The study was conducted between November 2014 and March 2015. A mixed method approach was adopted in the data collection including key person interviews, focus group discussion, and structured interview supported by a participatory field observation. Indigenous people in the study area have reported 143 species of birds belonging to 44 families representing 57 % of total number of species with known local names in Ghana. The study revealed that just as Latin and common English naming systems, indigenous Akan bird names originated from features of the bird, including plumage, vocalizations or behavioural characteristics and belief systems of the indigenous people. The study also discovered that indigenous people in the study area have distinct names for different species within a particular family for most of the birds they could identify. However, they occasionally assign a single general name for either the entire family or all species therein. The study found evidence to support the prediction that indigenous bird naming systems in the Akan language follow scientific nomenclature. Indigenous knowledge and understanding of birds in the study area can be tapped and used in conservation planning and monitoring of birds. This research thus provides sufficient evidence to prove that indigenous knowledge by the Akan tribes in
Azevedo, Cristiano S; Young, Robert J; Rodrigues, Marcos
Zoos may play an important role in conservation when they maintain and breed large numbers of animals that are threatened with extinction. Bird conservation is in a privileged situation owing to the extensive biological information available about this class. Annual inventories produced by the "Sociedade de Zoológicos do Brasil" in the years 1981, 1990, 2000, and 2005 were analyzed. Variables, such as the number of zoos per geographic region; number of birds held; number of bird species in each IUCN threat category; number of exotic and native bird species; number of potentially breeding bird species; number of bird species in each order; and number of threatened bird species breeding, were analyzed. Brazilian zoos kept more than 350 bird species. The number of bird species and specimens held by the Brazilian Zoos increased from 1981 to 2000, but decreased in 2005. The same pattern was observed for the number of species in each IUCN threat category. Results showed that the potential of the Brazilian zoos in bird conservation needs to be enhanced because they maintain threatened species but do not implement systematic genetic, reproductive, or behavioral management protocols for most species. © 2010 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
Alexander-Vaughn, Louise B.; Collazo, Jaime A.; Drew, C. Ashton
The Eastern North Carolina/Southeastern Virginia Strategic Habitat Conservation Team (ENCSEVA) is a partnership among local federal agencies and programs with a mission to apply Strategic Habitat Conservation to accomplish priority landscape-level conservation within its geographic region. ENCSEVA seeks to further landscape-scale conservation through collaboration with local partners. To accomplish this mission, ENCSEVA is developing a comprehensive Strategic Habitat Conservation Plan (Plan) to provide guidance for its members, partners, and collaborators by establishing mutual conservation goals, objectives, strategies, and metrics to gauge the success of conservation efforts. Identifying common goals allows the ENCSEVA team to develop strategies that leverage joint resources and are more likely to achieve desired impacts across the landscape. The Plan will also provide an approach for ENCSEVA to meet applied research needs (identify knowledge gaps), foster adaptive management principles, identify conservation priorities, prioritize threats (including potential impacts of climate change), and identify the required capacity to implement strategies to create more resilient landscapes. ENCSEVA seeks to support the overarching goals of the South Atlantic Landscape Conservation Cooperative (SALCC) and to provide scientific and technical support for conservation at landscape scales as well as inform the management of natural resources in response to shifts in climate, habitat fragmentation and loss, and other landscape-level challenges (South Atlantic LCC 2012). The ENCSEVA ecoregion encompasses the northern third of the SALCC geography and offers a unique opportunity to apply landscape conservation at multiple scales through the guidance of local conservation and natural resource management efforts and by reporting metrics that reflect the effectiveness of those efforts (Figure 1). The Environmental Decision Analysis Team, housed within the North Carolina Cooperative
Mellink, Eric; Cárdenas-García, Melinda
One of the most typical agro-ecosystems in the Llanos de Ojuelos, a semi-arid region of central Mexico, is that of fruit-production orchards of nopales (prickly pear cacti). This perennial habitat with complex vertical structure provides refuge and food for at least 112 species of birds throughout the year. Nopal orchards vary in their internal structure, size and shrub/tree composition, yet these factors have unknown effects on the animals that use them. To further understand the conservation potential of this agro-ecosystem, we evaluated the effects of patch-size and the presence of trees on bird community composition, as well as several habitat variables, through an information-theoretical modelling approach. Community composition was obtained through a year of census transects in 12 orchards. The presence of trees in the orchards was the major driver of bird communities followed by seasonality; bird communities are independent of patch size, except for small orchard patches that benefit black-chin sparrows, which are considered a sensitive species. At least 55 species of six trophic guilds (insectivores, granivores, carnivores, nectivores, omnivores, and frugivores) used the orchards. Orchards provide adequate habitat and food resources for several sensitive species of resident and migratory sparrows. The attributes that make orchards important for birds: trees, shrubs, herb seeds, and open patches can be managed to maintain native biodiversity in highly anthropized regions with an urgent need to find convergence between production and biological conservation. PMID:28686608
Mellink, Eric; Riojas-López, Mónica E; Cárdenas-García, Melinda
One of the most typical agro-ecosystems in the Llanos de Ojuelos, a semi-arid region of central Mexico, is that of fruit-production orchards of nopales (prickly pear cacti). This perennial habitat with complex vertical structure provides refuge and food for at least 112 species of birds throughout the year. Nopal orchards vary in their internal structure, size and shrub/tree composition, yet these factors have unknown effects on the animals that use them. To further understand the conservation potential of this agro-ecosystem, we evaluated the effects of patch-size and the presence of trees on bird community composition, as well as several habitat variables, through an information-theoretical modelling approach. Community composition was obtained through a year of census transects in 12 orchards. The presence of trees in the orchards was the major driver of bird communities followed by seasonality; bird communities are independent of patch size, except for small orchard patches that benefit black-chin sparrows, which are considered a sensitive species. At least 55 species of six trophic guilds (insectivores, granivores, carnivores, nectivores, omnivores, and frugivores) used the orchards. Orchards provide adequate habitat and food resources for several sensitive species of resident and migratory sparrows. The attributes that make orchards important for birds: trees, shrubs, herb seeds, and open patches can be managed to maintain native biodiversity in highly anthropized regions with an urgent need to find convergence between production and biological conservation.
Franck A Hollander
Full Text Available In human-altered environments, organisms may preferentially settle in poor-quality habitats where fitness returns are lower relative to available higher-quality habitats. Such ecological trapping is due to a mismatch between the cues used during habitat selection and the habitat quality. Maladaptive settlement decisions may occur when organisms are time-constrained and have to rapidly evaluate habitat quality based on incomplete knowledge of the resources and conditions that will be available later in the season. During a three-year study, we examined settlement decision-making in the long-distance migratory, open-habitat bird, the Red-backed shrike (Lanius collurio, as a response to recent land-use changes. In Northwest Europe, the shrikes typically breed in open areas under a management regime of extensive farming. In recent decades, Spruce forests have been increasingly managed with large-size cutblocks in even-aged plantations, thereby producing early-successional vegetation areas that are also colonised by the species. Farmland and open areas in forests create mosaics of two different types of habitats that are now occupied by the shrikes. We examined redundant measures of habitat preference (order of settlement after migration and distribution of dominant individuals and several reproductive performance parameters in both habitat types to investigate whether habitat preference is in line with habitat quality. Territorial males exhibited a clear preference for the recently created open areas in forests with higher-quality males settling in this habitat type earlier. Reproductive performance was, however, higher in farmland, with higher nest success, offspring quantity, and quality compared to open areas in forests. The results showed strong among-year consistency and we can therefore exclude a transient situation. This study demonstrates a case of maladaptive habitat selection in a farmland bird expanding its breeding range to human
Thomas W. Bonnot; Frank R. Thompson; Joshua J. Millspaugh; D. Todd. Jones-Farland
Efforts to conserve regional biodiversity in the face of global climate change, habitat loss and fragmentation will depend on approaches that consider population processes at multiple scales. By combining habitat and demographic modeling, landscape-based population viability models effectively relate small-scale habitat and landscape patterns to regional population...
Edgar O. Vazquez-Plass; Joseph M. Wunderle
Peopleâs knowledge of birds and the opinions and perceptions about specific issues related to the conservation of birds were quantified in rural and urban communities in northeastern Puerto Rico. Data were collected using questionnaires in interviews with 131 citizens haphazardly selected within the study site. Our results indicate that urban residents had a...
James M Beerens
Full Text Available Species distribution models (SDM link species occurrence with a suite of environmental predictors and provide an estimate of habitat quality when the variable set captures the biological requirements of the species. SDMs are inherently more complex when they include components of a species' ecology such as conspecific attraction and behavioral flexibility to exploit resources that vary across time and space. Wading birds are highly mobile, demonstrate flexible habitat selection, and respond quickly to changes in habitat quality; thus serving as important indicator species for wetland systems. We developed a spatio-temporal, multi-SDM framework using Great Egret (Ardea alba, White Ibis (Eudocimus albus, and Wood Stork (Mycteria Americana distributions over a decadal gradient of environmental conditions to predict species-specific abundance across space and locations used on the landscape over time. In models of temporal dynamics, species demonstrated conditional preferences for resources based on resource levels linked to differing temporal scales. Wading bird abundance was highest when prey production from optimal periods of inundation was concentrated in shallow depths. Similar responses were observed in models predicting locations used over time, accounting for spatial autocorrelation. Species clustered in response to differing habitat conditions, indicating that social attraction can co-vary with foraging strategy, water-level changes, and habitat quality. This modeling framework can be applied to evaluate the multi-annual resource pulses occurring in real-time, climate change scenarios, or restorative hydrological regimes by tracking changing seasonal and annual distribution and abundance of high quality foraging patches.
Beerens, James M.; Noonberg, Erik G.; Gawlik, Dale E.
Species distribution models (SDM) link species occurrence with a suite of environmental predictors and provide an estimate of habitat quality when the variable set captures the biological requirements of the species. SDMs are inherently more complex when they include components of a species' ecology such as conspecific attraction and behavioral flexibility to exploit resources that vary across time and space. Wading birds are highly mobile, demonstrate flexible habitat selection, and respond quickly to changes in habitat quality; thus serving as important indicator species for wetland systems. We developed a spatio-temporal, multi-SDM framework using Great Egret (Ardea alba), White Ibis (Eudocimus albus), and Wood Stork (Mycteria Americana) distributions over a decadal gradient of environmental conditions to predict species-specific abundance across space and locations used on the landscape over time. In models of temporal dynamics, species demonstrated conditional preferences for resources based on resource levels linked to differing temporal scales. Wading bird abundance was highest when prey production from optimal periods of inundation was concentrated in shallow depths. Similar responses were observed in models predicting locations used over time, accounting for spatial autocorrelation. Species clustered in response to differing habitat conditions, indicating that social attraction can co-vary with foraging strategy, water-level changes, and habitat quality. This modeling framework can be applied to evaluate the multi-annual resource pulses occurring in real-time, climate change scenarios, or restorative hydrological regimes by tracking changing seasonal and annual distribution and abundance of high quality foraging patches.
Full Text Available How do you successfully engage an audience in a citizen-science project? The processes developed by eBird (www.ebird.org, a fast-growing web-based tool that now gathers millions of bird observations per month, offers a model.
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Duflot, R.; Avon, C.; Roche, P.; Bergès, L.
In response to the negative effects of habitat fragmentation on biodiversity, ecological network conservation and restoration has become a central objective in biodiversity conservation planning. Evaluating landscape functional connectivity for species and mapping ecological networks are key steps towards effective implementation of relevant actions, but both remain challenging. Habitat suitability models and spatial graphs are thought to provide conservation practitioners with useful informa...
Martin, Thomas E.
Resource selection specialization may increase vulnerability of populations to environmental change. One environmental change that may negatively impact some populations is the broad decline of quaking aspen Populus tremuloides, a preferred nest tree of cavity-nesting organisms who are commonly limited by nest-site availability. However, the long-term consequences of this habitat change for cavity-nesting bird populations are poorly studied.
Keith McKnight; Robert Ford; Jennifer Kross
The North American Wetlands Conservation Act (NAWCA) was passed in 1989, and has been instrumental in restoring, protecting, and enhancing 3.5 million has of wetland and associated habitats across North America. The objective of this study was to assess the extent to which NAWCA projects have addressed the priority habitat needs expressed by the North American...
Cīrule, Dina; Krama, Tatjana; Krams, Ronalds; Elferts, Didzis; Kaasik, Ants; Rantala, Markus J.; Mierauskas, Pranas; Luoto, Severi; Krams, Indrikis A.
Animals normally respond to stressful environmental stimuli by releasing glucocorticoid hormones. We investigated whether baseline corticosterone (CORT), handling-induced corticosterone concentration(s), and body condition indices of members of willow tit ( Poecile montanus) groups differed while wintering in old growth forests and managed young forests in mild weather conditions and during cold spells. Willow tits spend the winter season in non-kin groups in which dominant individuals typically claim their priority to access resources, while subordinate individuals may experience greater levels of stress and higher mortality, especially during cold spells. We captured birds to measure baseline CORT and levels of handling-induced CORT secretion after 20 min of capture. Willow tits in the young forests had higher baseline CORT and a smaller increase in CORT in response to capture than individuals in the old forests. Baseline CORT was higher in females and juvenile birds compared to adult males, whereas handling-induced CORT secretion did not differ between birds of different ages. During cold spells, baseline CORT of willow tits increased and handling-induced CORT secretion decreased, especially in birds in young forests. Willow tits' survival was higher in the old forests, with dominant individuals surviving better than subordinates. Our results show that changes in CORT secretion reflect responses to habitat quality and climate harshness, indicating young managed coniferous forests as a suboptimal habitat for the willow tit.
This report summarizes the results of a study to identify the habitat use and behavior of the upland sandpiper, : a state-endangered bird species, at Portsmouth International Airport (PSM), which is near the Great Bay National : Wildlife Refuge (GBNW...
The Wadden Sea region is one of the most important breeding areas in Western Europe for coastal breeding bird species. It is expected that management of salt marshes is important for successful conservation of breeding bird populations but the impact of management on the habitat quality for breeding birds is still not fully understood. In this study the effects of management on the three crucial habitat characteristics for breeding birds were studied on mainland salt marshes: effects of manag...
Full Text Available Many bird populations worldwide are at risk of extinction, and rely heavily on protected area networks for their continued conservation. Tourism to these areas contributes to conservation by generating revenue for management. Here we quantify the contribution of tourism revenue for bird species in the IUCN Red List, using a simple accounting method. Relevant data are available for 90 (16% of the 562 critically endangered and endangered species. Contributions of tourism to bird conservation are highest, 10-64%, in South America, Africa, and their neighbouring islands. Critically endangered bird species rely on tourism more heavily than endangered species (p<0.02. Many protected areas could also enhance their management budgets by promoting birdwatching tourism specifically.
Steven, Rochelle; Castley, J. Guy; Buckley, Ralf
Many bird populations worldwide are at risk of extinction, and rely heavily on protected area networks for their continued conservation. Tourism to these areas contributes to conservation by generating revenue for management. Here we quantify the contribution of tourism revenue for bird species in the IUCN Red List, using a simple accounting method. Relevant data are available for 90 (16%) of the 562 critically endangered and endangered species. Contributions of tourism to bird conservation are highest, 10–64%, in South America, Africa, and their neighbouring islands. Critically endangered bird species rely on tourism more heavily than endangered species (p<0.02). Many protected areas could also enhance their management budgets by promoting birdwatching tourism specifically. PMID:23667498
Assandri, Giacomo; Bogliani, Giuseppe; Pedrini, Paolo; Brambilla, Mattia
Viticulture has contributed to shaping cultural landscapes in several regions across all continents. Recent farming intensification is causing landscape homogenization and biodiversity loss in several of those areas, but knowledge about the impacts on biodiversity in vineyards is still scarce. Simplified agro-ecosystems resulting from intensification host mainly generalist and common species, which still play a key role in the regulation of ecosystems and in the provision of ecosystem services. We assessed the abundance of 11 common bird species at 47 linear transects in a vineyard-dominated landscape in Trentino (NE Italy), in both spring and winter, and analysed abundance variation in relation to three independent groups of predictors: landscape, management, and topographic-climatic variables. In the majority of species (7), abundance was primarily or considerably affected by landscape attributes. However, an additional 5 species were largely affected by management practices, often with conspicuous seasonal differences. Overall, landscape and management heterogeneity positively affected the abundance of 6 species. Vineyard cover (and in particular the new spalliera trellising system) was negatively related with the abundance of 6 species, with the strongest impacts occurring in winter. On the contrary, the cover of marginal habitats had major positive effects over 8 species. Hedgerows, tree rows, and dry stone walls, as well as traditional pergola vineyards and landscape and management heterogeneity should be conserved or restored in viticultural landscapes to promote the abundance of common bird species. This strategy would ensure the maintenance of the ecosystem services they provide, while promoting the general sustainability of the agroecosystem. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Twedt, Daniel J.; Wilson, R. Randy
Managers of public conservation lands in the Mississippi Alluvial Valley have implemented forest management strategies to improve bottomland hardwood habitat for target wildlife species. Through implementation of various silvicultural practices, forest managers have sought to attain forest structural conditions (e.g., canopy cover, basal area, etc.) within values postulated to benefit wildlife. We evaluated data from point count surveys of breeding birds on 180 silviculturally treated stands (1049 counts) that ranged from 1 to 20 years post-treatment and 134 control stands (676 counts) that had not been harvested for >20 years. Birds detected during 10-min counts were recorded within four distance classes and three time intervals. Avian diversity was greater on treated stands than on unharvested stands. Of 42 commonly detected species, six species including Prothonotary Warbler (Prothonotaria citrea) and Acadian Flycatcher (Empidonax virescens) were indicative of control stands. Similarly, six species including Indigo Bunting (Passerina cyanea) and Yellow-breasted Chat (Icteria virens) were indicative of treated stands. Using a removal model to assess probability of detection, we evaluated occupancy of bottomland forests at two spatial scales (stands and points within occupied stands). Wildlife-forestry treatment improved predictive models of species occupancy for 18 species. We found years post treatment (range = 1–20), total basal area, and overstory canopy were important species-specific predictors of occupancy, whereas variability in basal area was not. In addition, we used a removal model to estimate species-specific probability of availability for detection, and a distance model to estimate effective detection radius. We used these two estimated parameters to derive species densities and 95% confidence intervals for treated and unharvested stands. Avian densities differed between treated and control stands for 16 species, but only Common Yellowthroat
Kastner, Brandi; Christensen, Victoria G.; Williamson, Tanja N.; Sanocki, Chris A.
The Prairie Pothole Region (PPR) is home to more than 50% of the migratory waterfowl in North America. Although the PPR provides an abundance of temporary and permanent wetlands for nesting and feeding, increases in commodity prices and agricultural drainage practices have led to a trend of wetland drainage. The Northern Shoveler is a migratory dabbling duck species that uses wetland habitats and cultivated croplands in the PPR. Richland County in North Dakota and Roberts County in South Dakota have an abundance of wetlands and croplands and were chosen as the study areas for this research to assess the wetland size and cultivated cropland in relation to hydrologic soil groups for the Northern Shoveler habitat. This study used geographic information system data to analyze Northern Shoveler habitats in association with Natural Resource Conservation Service soil data. Habitats, which are spatially associated with certain hydrologic soil groups, may be at risk of artificial drainage installations because of their proximity to cultivated croplands and soil lacking in natural drainage that may become wet or inundated. Findings indicate that most wetlands that are part of Northern Shoveler habitats were within or adjacent to cultivated croplands. The results also revealed soil hydrologic groups with high runoff potential and low water transmission rates account for most of the soil within the Northern Shoveler‘s wetland and cropland habitats. Habitats near agriculture with high runoff potential are likely to be drained and this has the potential of reducing Northern Shoveler habitat.
Michelle M Jackson
Full Text Available North America's coastal mountains are particularly vulnerable to climate change, yet harbour a number of endemic species. With little room "at the top" to track shifting climate envelopes, alpine species may be especially negatively affected by climate-induced habitat fragmentation. We ask how climate change will affect the total amount, mean patch size, and number of patches of suitable habitat for Vancouver Island White-tailed Ptarmigan (Lagopus leucura saxatilis; VIWTP, a threatened, endemic alpine bird. Using a Random Forest model and a unique dataset consisting of citizen science observations combined with field surveys, we predict the distribution and configuration of potential suitable summer habitat for VIWTP under baseline and future (2020s, 2050s, and 2080s climates using three general circulation models and two greenhouse gas scenarios. VIWTP summer habitat is predicted to decline by an average of 25%, 44%, and 56% by the 2020s, 2050s, and 2080s, respectively, under the low greenhouse gas scenario and 27%, 59%, and 74% under the high scenario. Habitat patches are predicted to become fragmented, with a 52-79% reduction in mean patch size. The average elevation of suitable habitat patches is expected to increase, reflecting a loss of patches at lower elevations. Thus ptarmigan are in danger of being "squeezed off the mountain", as their remaining suitable habitat will be increasingly confined to mountaintops in the center of the island. The extent to which ptarmigan will be able to persist in increasingly fragmented habitat is unclear. Much will depend on their ability to move throughout a more heterogeneous landscape, utilize smaller breeding areas, and survive increasingly variable climate extremes. Our results emphasize the importance of continued monitoring and protection for high elevation specialist species, and suggest that White-tailed Ptarmigan should be considered an indicator species for alpine ecosystems in the face of
van Hees, S.R.W.
This article discusses two legal issues that relate to the conflict between the interest of protecting habitats and species under the Habitats and Birds Directives, versus the interest of promoting the use of innovative water-related renewable energy, with regard to the quota in the Renewable Energy
Kirsten M. Parris
Full Text Available Roadside habitats are important for a range of taxa including plants, insects, mammals, and birds, particularly in developed countries in which large expanses of native vegetation have been cleared for agriculture or urban development. Although roadside vegetation may provide suitable habitat for many species, resident animals can be exposed to high levels of traffic noise, visual disturbance from passing vehicles, and the risk of collision with cars and trucks. Traffic noise can reduce the distance over which acoustic signals such as song can be detected, an effect known as acoustic interference or masking. Studies from the northern hemisphere show that the singing behavior of birds changes in the presence of traffic noise. We investigated the impact of traffic noise and traffic volume on two species of birds, the Grey Shrike-thrush (Colluricincla harmonica and the Grey Fantail (Rhipidura fuliginosa, at 58 roadside sites on the Mornington Peninsula, southeastern Australia. The lower singing Grey Shrike-thrush sang at a higher frequency in the presence of traffic noise, with a predicted increase in dominant frequency of 5.8 Hz/dB of traffic noise, and a total effect size of 209 Hz. In contrast, the higher singing Grey Fantail did not appear to change its song in traffic noise. The probability of detecting each species on a visit to a site declined substantially with increasing traffic noise and traffic volume, with several lines of evidence supporting a larger effect of traffic noise. Traffic noise could hamper detection of song by conspecifics, making it more difficult for birds to establish and maintain territories, attract mates and maintain pair bonds, and possibly leading to reduced breeding success in noisy roadside habitats. Closing key roads during the breeding season is a potential, but untested, management strategy to protect threatened bird species from traffic noise and collision with vehicles at the time of year when they are most
Hudson, Marie-Anne R.; Francis, Charles M.; Campbell, Kate J.; Downes, Constance M.; Smith, Adam C.; Pardieck, Keith L.
The North American Breeding Bird Survey (BBS) was established in 1966 in response to a lack of quantitative data on changes in the populations of many bird species at a continental scale, especially songbirds. The BBS now provides the most reliable regional and continental trends and annual indices of abundance available for >500 bird species. This paper reviews some of the ways in which BBS data have contributed to bird conservation in North America over the past 50 yr, and highlights future program enhancement opportunities. BBS data have contributed to the listing of species under the Canadian Species at Risk Act and, in a few cases, have informed species assessments under the U.S. Endangered Species Act. By raising awareness of population changes, the BBS has helped to motivate bird conservation efforts through the creation of Partners in Flight. BBS data have been used to determine priority species and locations for conservation action at regional and national scales through Bird Conservation Region strategies and Joint Ventures. Data from the BBS have provided the quantitative foundation for North American State of the Birds reports, and have informed the public with regard to environmental health through multiple indicators, such as the Canadian Environmental Sustainability Indicators and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's Report on the Environment. BBS data have been analyzed with other data (e.g., environmental, land cover, and demographic) to evaluate potential drivers of population change, which have then informed conservation actions. In a few cases, BBS data have contributed to the evaluation of management actions, including informing the management of Mourning Doves (Zenaida macroura), Wood Ducks (Aix sponsa), and Golden Eagles (Aquila chrysaetos). Improving geographic coverage in northern Canada and in Mexico, improving the analytical approaches required to integrate data from other sources and to address variation in detectability, and
We used line transects to sample birds because this method covers large areas quickly. (Bibby et al. 2000). A total of 35 transects whose lengths varied from 1–4 km were surveyed in four main habitats during the wet season (April 2012) and during the dry season (August 2012). The lengths of transects were as follows:.
Kathleen E. Franzreb; Deborah M. Finch; Petra Bohall Wood; David E. Capen
We recommend that managers of forest-associated bird species follow a five-step hierarchy in establishing and implementing management programs. In essence, a manager must evaluate the composition and physiognomy of the landscape mosaic in the context of the regional and subregional goals and objectives. Then he/she can explore alternatives that allow manipulation of...
-long Namib Desert and it remains the least known coastal wetland on a desert coast rich in shorebirds. Two surveys of the Baia dos Tigres region in 1999 and 2001 indicated a rich wetland bird diversity consisting of 25 species, with a total of ...
Roger Tankersley, Jr.
Full Text Available Intact migratory routes are critical for the stability of forest-dwelling, neotropical, migratory bird populations, and mortality along migratory pathways may be significant. Yet we know almost nothing about the geography of available stopovers or the possible migratory pathways that connect optimal stopovers. We undertake a spatial analysis of stopover habitat availability and then model potential migratory pathways between optimal stopovers in the eastern United States. Using models of fixed orientation and fixed nightly flight distance between stopovers during spring migration, we explore whether a simple endogenous migratory program is sufficient to ensure successful migration across the modern landscape. Our model runs suggest that the modern distribution of optimum stopovers in the eastern United States can be adequately exploited by birds following migratory pathways defined by fixed-orientation and fixed-distance nightly flights. Longer flight distances may increase the chances of success by enabling migrants to bypass locales offering little habitat. Our results also suggest that most southwest-northeast migratory pathways through the Appalachian mountains are intact. Lack of optimal habitat at key locations in the Southeast causes many modeled pathways to fail. We present a speculative view of regional migration patterns implied by predominant ideas found in stopover ecology literature, and demonstrate the need for broad-scale migration research, in the hope that our approach will foster other continental- and regional-scale projects.
.... Keystone has applied for an incidental take permit under the Endangered Species Act, that would authorize...-FF02ENEH00] Draft Environmental Assessment and Draft Habitat Conservation Plan for TransCanada Keystone... of the draft Environmental Assessment and draft Habitat Conservation Plan for TransCanada Keystone...
Tozer, Douglas C; Steele, Owen; Gloutney, Mark
Wetlands conserved using water level manipulation, cattle exclusion, naturalization of uplands, and other techniques under the North American Waterfowl Management Plan ("conservation project wetlands") are important for ducks, geese, and swans ("waterfowl"). However, the assumption that conservation actions for waterfowl also benefit other wildlife is rarely quantified. We modeled detection and occupancy of species at sites within 42 conservation project wetlands compared to sites within 52 similar nearby unmanaged wetlands throughout southern Ontario, Canada, and small portions of the adjacent U.S., using citizen science data collected by Bird Studies Canada's Great Lakes Marsh Monitoring Program, including 2 waterfowl and 13 non-waterfowl marsh-breeding bird species (n = 413 sites) and 7 marsh-breeding frog species (n = 191 sites). Occupancy was significantly greater at conservation project sites compared to unmanaged sites in 7 of 15 (47%) bird species and 3 of 7 (43%) frog species, with occupancy being higher by a difference of 0.12-0.38 across species. Notably, occupancy of priority conservation concern or at-risk Black Tern (Chlidonias niger), Common Gallinule (Gallinula galeata), Least Bittern (Ixobrychus exilis), Sora (Porzana carolina), and Western Chorus Frog (Pseudacris triseriata) was significantly higher at conservation project sites compared to unmanaged sites. The results demonstrate the utility of citizen science to inform wetland conservation, and suggest that actions under the North American Waterfowl Management Plan are effective for conserving non-waterfowl species. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Liang, Jie; Gao, Xiang; Zeng, Guangming; Hua, Shanshan; Zhong, Minzhou; Li, Xiaodong; Li, Xin
Climate change and human activities cause uncertain changes to species biodiversity by altering their habitat. The uncertainty of climate change requires planners to balance the benefit and cost of making conservation plan. Here optimal protection approach for Lesser White-fronted Goose (LWfG) by coupling Modern Portfolio Theory (MPT) and Marxan selection were proposed. MPT was used to provide suggested weights of investment for protected area (PA) and reduce the influence of climatic uncertainty, while Marxan was utilized to choose a series of specific locations for PA. We argued that through combining these two commonly used techniques with the conservation plan, including assets allocation and PA chosing, the efficiency of rare bird's protection would be enhanced. In MPT analyses, the uncertainty of conservation-outcome can be reduced while conservation effort was allocated in Hunan, Jiangxi and Yangtze River delta. In Marxan model, the optimal location for habitat restorations based on existing nature reserve was identified. Clear priorities for the location and allocation of assets could be provided based on this research, and it could help decision makers to build conservation strategy for LWfG.
Howell, J.E.; Moore, C.T.; Conroy, M.J.; Hamrick, R.G.; Cooper, R.J.; Thackston, R.E.; Carroll, J.P.
Large-scale habitat enhancement programs for birds are becoming more widespread, however, most lack monitoring to resolve uncertainties and enhance program impact over time. Georgia?s Bobwhite Quail Initiative (BQI) is a competitive, proposal-based system that provides incentives to landowners to establish habitat for northern bobwhites (Colinus virginianus). Using data from monitoring conducted in the program?s first years (1999?2001), we developed alternative hierarchical models to predict bobwhite abundance in response to program habitat modifications on local and regional scales. Effects of habitat and habitat management on bobwhite population response varied among geographical scales, but high measurement variability rendered the specific nature of these scaled effects equivocal. Under some models, BQI had positive impact at both local farm scales (1, 9 km2), particularly when practice acres were clustered, whereas other credible models indicated that bird response did not depend on spatial arrangement of practices. Thus, uncertainty about landscape-level effects of management presents a challenge to program managers who must decide which proposals to accept. We demonstrate that optimal selection decisions can be made despite this uncertainty and that uncertainty can be reduced over time, with consequent improvement in management efficacy. However, such an adaptive approach to BQI program implementation would require the reestablishment of monitoring of bobwhite abundance, an effort for which funding was discontinued in 2002. For landscape-level conservation programs generally, our approach demonstrates the value in assessing multiple scales of impact of habitat modification programs, and it reveals the utility of addressing management uncertainty through multiple decision models and system monitoring.
Iovanna, Richard; Ando , Amy W.; Swinton, Scott; Hellerstein, Daniel; Kagan, Jimmy; Mushet, David M.; Otto, Clint R.; Rewa, Charles A.
Pollination services have received increased attention over the past several years, and protecting foraging area is beginning to be reflected in conservation policy. This case study considers the prospects for doing so in a more analytically rigorous manner, by quantifying the pollination services for sites being considered for ecological restoration. The specific policy context is the Conservation Reserve Program (CRP), which offers financial and technical assistance to landowners seeking to convert sensitive cropland back to some semblance of the prairie (or, to a lesser extent, forest or wetland) ecosystem that preceded it. Depending on the mix of grasses and wildflowers that are established, CRP enrollments can provide pollinator habitat. Further, depending on their location, they will generate related services, such as biological control of crop pests, recreation, and aesthetics. While offers to enroll in CRP compete based on cost and some anticipated benefits, the eligibility and ranking criteria do not reflect these services to a meaningful degree. Therefore, we develop a conceptual value diagram to identify the sequence of steps and associated models and data necessary to quantify the full range of services, and find that critical data gaps, some of which are artifacts of policy, preclude the application of benefit-relevant indicators (BRIs) or monetization. However, we also find that there is considerable research activity underway to fill these gaps. In addition, a modeling framework has been developed that can estimate field-level effects on services as a function of landscape context. The approach is inherently scalable and not limited in geographic scope, which is essential for a program with a national footprint. The parameters in this framework are sufficiently straightforward that expert judgment could be applied as a stopgap approach until empirically derived estimates are available. While monetization of benefit-relevant indicators of yield
Full Text Available We reviewed the local current status and summarized the suspected causes of rarity, and presumed major threats to the 84 rarest bird speciesin the state of Rio de Janeiro, southeastern Brazil. We have focused on the bird species that have not been recently recorded or have fewer than 10records in the last five decades in the state of Rio de Janeiro. Of these, 24 species are considered globally threatened or near threatened, and at least about 30 species are actually common or abundant elsewhere in their distribution. More than half of these species are forest birds inhabiting mainlylowland forests, but less than one-fifth of these species are endemic to the Atlantic Forest. The trophic guilds with the highest numbers of species were omnivores and insectivores. The main habitats used by the rarest bird species were wetlands, lowland forest canopy, secondary forest canopy and secondary forest edge. Bird species using two or more habitats were more represented among rare species than those using only a single habitat. Ninespecies were considered locally extinct, 11 probably Extinct, 27 Critically Endangered and 13 considered Data Deficient in Rio de Janeiro which are of increased conservation concern in the region. Although included among the rarest birds found in the state of Rio de Janeiro, 24 species were not classified as locally threatened because they are naturally rare migrants or vagrants in the region, without evidence of significant population sizereduction in the state in recent decades. Fifteen species had their conservation status considered threatened in the state for the first time. Forty-four species had their local conservation status uplisted, while only five species were downlisted. The major causes of rarity and threats to these species in the region are habitat loss and hunting/trapping, but nearly one-third of them have unknown causes of rarity.
Lundhede, Thomas Hedemark; Jacobsen, Jette Bredahl; Hanley, Nick; Fjeldså, Jon; Rahbek, Carsten; Strange, Niels; Thorsen, Bo Jellesmark
There is increasing evidence that global climate change will alter the spatiotemporal occurrences and abundances of many species at continental scales. This will have implications for efficient conservation of biodiversity. We investigate if the general public in Denmark are willing to pay for the preservation of birds potentially immigrating and establishing breeding populations due to climate change to the same extent that they are for native species populations currently breeding in Denmark, but potentially emigrating due to climate change. We find that Danish citizens are willing to pay much more for the conservation of birds currently native to Denmark, than for bird species moving into the country--even when they are informed about the potential range shifts associated with climate change. The only exception is when immigrating species populations are under pressure at European level. Furthermore, people believing climate change to be man-made and people more knowledgeable about birds tended to have higher WTP for conservation of native species, relative to other people, whereas their preferences for conserving immigrant species generally resembled those of other people. Conservation investments rely heavily on public funding and hence on public support. Our results suggest that cross-country coordination of conservation efforts under climate change will be challenging in terms of achieving an appropriate balance between cost-effectiveness in adaptation and the concerns of a general public who seem mostly worried about protecting currently-native species.
Yntze van der Hoek
Full Text Available Habitat thresholds are often interpreted as the minimum required area of habitat, and subsequently promoted as conservation targets in natural resource policies and planning. Unfortunately, several recent reviews and messages of caution on the application of habitat thresholds in conservation have largely fallen on deaf ears, leading to a dangerous oversimplification and generalization of the concept. We highlight the prevalence of oversimplification/over-generalization of results from habitat threshold studies in policy documentation, the consequences of such over-generalization, and directions for habitat threshold studies that have conservation applications without risking overgeneralization. We argue that in order to steer away from misapplication of habitat thresholds in conservation, we should not focus on generalized nominal habitat values (i.e., amounts or percentages of habitat, but on the use of habitat threshold modeling for comparative exercises of area-sensitivity or the identification of environmental dangers. In addition, we should remain focused on understanding the processes and mechanisms underlying species responses to habitat change. Finally, studies could that focus on deriving nominal value threshold amounts should do so only if the thresholds are detailed, species-specific, and translated to conservation targets particular to the study area only.
de Thoisy, Benoit; Fayad, Ibrahim; Clément, Luc; Barrioz, Sébastien; Poirier, Eddy; Gond, Valéry
Tropical forests with a low human population and absence of large-scale deforestation provide unique opportunities to study successful conservation strategies, which should be based on adequate monitoring tools. This study explored the conservation status of a large predator, the jaguar, considered an indicator of the maintenance of how well ecological processes are maintained. We implemented an original integrative approach, exploring successive ecosystem status proxies, from habitats and responses to threats of predators and their prey, to canopy structure and forest biomass. Niche modeling allowed identification of more suitable habitats, significantly related to canopy height and forest biomass. Capture/recapture methods showed that jaguar density was higher in habitats identified as more suitable by the niche model. Surveys of ungulates, large rodents and birds also showed higher density where jaguars were more abundant. Although jaguar density does not allow early detection of overall vertebrate community collapse, a decrease in the abundance of large terrestrial birds was noted as good first evidence of disturbance. The most promising tool comes from easily acquired LiDAR data and radar images: a decrease in canopy roughness was closely associated with the disturbance of forests and associated decreasing vertebrate biomass. This mixed approach, focusing on an apex predator, ecological modeling and remote-sensing information, not only helps detect early population declines in large mammals, but is also useful to discuss the relevance of large predators as indicators and the efficiency of conservation measures. It can also be easily extrapolated and adapted in a timely manner, since important open-source data are increasingly available and relevant for large-scale and real-time monitoring of biodiversity. PMID:27828993
Benoit de Thoisy
Full Text Available Tropical forests with a low human population and absence of large-scale deforestation provide unique opportunities to study successful conservation strategies, which should be based on adequate monitoring tools. This study explored the conservation status of a large predator, the jaguar, considered an indicator of the maintenance of how well ecological processes are maintained. We implemented an original integrative approach, exploring successive ecosystem status proxies, from habitats and responses to threats of predators and their prey, to canopy structure and forest biomass. Niche modeling allowed identification of more suitable habitats, significantly related to canopy height and forest biomass. Capture/recapture methods showed that jaguar density was higher in habitats identified as more suitable by the niche model. Surveys of ungulates, large rodents and birds also showed higher density where jaguars were more abundant. Although jaguar density does not allow early detection of overall vertebrate community collapse, a decrease in the abundance of large terrestrial birds was noted as good first evidence of disturbance. The most promising tool comes from easily acquired LiDAR data and radar images: a decrease in canopy roughness was closely associated with the disturbance of forests and associated decreasing vertebrate biomass. This mixed approach, focusing on an apex predator, ecological modeling and remote-sensing information, not only helps detect early population declines in large mammals, but is also useful to discuss the relevance of large predators as indicators and the efficiency of conservation measures. It can also be easily extrapolated and adapted in a timely manner, since important open-source data are increasingly available and relevant for large-scale and real-time monitoring of biodiversity.
Hitchman, Sean M; Mather, Martha E; Smith, Joseph M; Fencl, Jane S
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 (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. © 2017 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.
Wilson, T.L.; Johnson, E.J.; Bissonette, J.A.
There is debate among ecologists about whether total habitat area or patch arrangement contributes most to population and/or community responses to fragmented or patchy landscapes. We tested the relative effects of patch area and isolation for predicting bird occurrence in a naturally patchy landscape in the Bear River Mountains of Northern Utah, USA. We selected focal patches (mountain meadows) ranging in elevation from 1,920 to 2,860 m and in size from 0.6 to 182 ha. Breeding birds were sampled in each focal meadow during the summers of 2003 and 2004 using variable-distance point transects. Logistic regression and likelihood-based model selection were used to determine the relationship between likelihood of occurrence of three bird species (Brewer's sparrow, vesper sparrow, and white-crowned sparrow) and area, isolation, and proximity metrics. We used model weights and model-averaged confidence intervals to assess the importance of each predictor variable. Plots of area versus isolation were used to evaluate complex relationships between the variables. We found that meadow area was the most important variable for explaining occurrence for two species, and that isolation was the most important for the other. We also found that the absolute distance was more appropriate for evaluating isolation responses than was the species-specific proximity metric. Our findings add clarity to the debate between ecologists regarding the relative importance of area and isolation in species responses to patchy landscapes.
Full Text Available There is a lack of data on the population densities of birds breeding in a mosaic of typical urbanized habitats. This study was undertaken to partly fulfil this gap in our knowledge. Counts were conducted in 2008 by means of simplified territory mapping method in a fragment (1197 ha of a large Central European city (Wrocław, SW Poland. In total, 50 bird species were breeding in the study area in 2008. The House Sparrow Passer domesticus, Common Swift Apus apus and Rock Dove comprised about 3/5 of all breeding pairs. The other group of species, each one with a density between 6 and 13 pairs per 100 ha, included seven species, namely the Starling, Sturnus vulgaris, Greenfinch, Carduelis chloris, House Martin, Delichon urbica, Tree Sparrow, Passer montanus, Great Tit, Parus major, Blue Tit, Parus caeruleus, and Jackdaw, Corvus monedula. They comprised together about 1/5. The remaining 40 species nested in a density between 0.1 and 3.5 pairs per 100 ha. The most numerous feeding guild were granivores (53.8% and insectivores (37.9 %. Birds nesting on buildings comprised together 74 % of all breeding pairs. For a few species (Luscinia megarhynchos, Saxicola torquata, Corvus cornix and Turdus pilaris an increase in their numbers in the last three decades has been evidenced.
Ramírez-Albores, Jorge E
In many parts of the neotropics, the original habitats are rapidly changing because of excessive logging, agriculture and livestock activity, with an often negative impact on bird communities. I present an analysis of the diversity and richness of birds in a fragmented landscape of the Central Chiapas Depression. Fieldwork was conducted from February 2003 to January 2004. Using point counts, a total of 35 families and 225 bird species were registered (164 residents and 61 migratory); 3% are abundant and 30% rare. Diversity, species richness and number of individuals were significantly higher in tropical deciduous forest (H'=3.41, 178 species ANOVA p<0.0001), which also had the greatest number of species restricted to a single vegetation type (39 species). The incorporation and maintenance of natural and modified habitats are necessary for the survival and reproduction of many birds species in the study area.
Korfanta, N.M.; Newmark, W.D.; Kauffman, M.J.
Tropical deforestation continues to cause population declines and local extinctions in centers of avian diversity and endemism. Although local species extinctions stem from reductions in demographic rates, little is known about how habitat fragmentation influences survival of tropical bird populations or the relative importance of survival and fecundity in ultimately shaping communities. We analyzed 22 years of mark-recapture data to assess how fragmentation influenced apparent survival, recruitment, and realized population growth rate within 22 forest understory bird species in the Usambara Mountains, Tanzania. This represents the first such effort, in either tropical or temperate systems, to characterize the effect of deforestation on avian survival across such a broad suite of species. Long-term demographic analysis of this suite of species experiencing the same fragmented environment revealed considerable variability in species' responses to fragmentation, in addition to general patterns that emerged from comparison among species. Across the understory bird community as a whole, we found significantly lower apparent survival and realized population growth rate in small fragments relative to large, demonstrating fragmentation effects to demographic rates long after habitat loss. Demographic rates were depressed across five feeding guilds, suggesting that fragmentation sensitivity was not limited to insectivores. Seniority analyses, together with a positive effect of fragmentation on recruitment, indicated that depressed apparent survival was the primary driver of population declines and observed extinctions. We also found a landscape effect, with lower vital rates in one mountain range relative to another, suggesting that fragmentation effects may add to other large-scale drivers of population decline. Overall, realized population growth rate (λ) estimates were < 1 for most species, suggesting that future population persistence even within large forest
Korfanta, Nicole M; Newmark, William D; Kauffman, Matthew J
Tropical deforestation continues to cause population declines and local extinctions in centers of avian diversity and endemism. Although local species extinctions stem from reductions in demographic rates, little is known about how habitat fragmentation influences survival of tropical bird populations or the relative importance of survival and fecundity in ultimately shaping communities. We analyzed 22 years of mark-recapture data to assess how fragmentation influenced apparent survival, recruitment, and realized population growth rate within 22 forest understory bird species in the Usambara Mountains, Tanzania. This represents the first such effort, in either tropical or temperate systems, to characterize the effect of deforestation on avian survival across such a broad suite of species. Long-term demographic analysis of this suite of species experiencing the same fragmented environment revealed considerable variability in species' responses to fragmentation, in addition to general patterns that emerged from comparison among species. Across the understory bird community as a whole, we found significantly lower apparent survival and realized population growth rate in small fragments relative to large, demonstrating fragmentation effects to demographic rates long after habitat loss, Demographic rates were depressed across five feeding guilds, suggesting that fragmentation sensitivity was not limited to insectivores. Seniority analyses, together with a positive effect of fragmentation on recruitment, indicated that depressed apparent survival was the primary driver of population declines and observed extinctions. We also found a landscape effect, with lower vital rates in one mountain range relative to another, suggesting that fragmentation effects may add to other large-scale drivers of population decline. Overall, realized population growth rate (lambda) estimates were fragments, is uncertain in this biodiversity hotspot.
Luke T. Macaulay
Private land plays a crucial role in the conservation of biodiversity in California, yet these lands are the least protected and most prone to environmental degradation. In 1930, Aldo Leopold recognized the potential to better conserve private land by an incentive scheme where recreational users would pay landowners for access to conserved wildlife habitat. While...
Knick, Steven T.; Hanser, Steve; Grace, James B.; Hollenbeck, Jeff P.; Leu, Matthias
Piñon (Pinus spp.) and juniper (Juniperus spp.) woodlands have been expanding their range across the intermountain western United States into landscapes dominated by sagebrush (Artemisia spp.) shrublands. Management actions using prescribed fire and mechanical cutting to reduce woodland cover and control expansion provided opportunities to understand how environmental structure and changes due to these treatments influence bird communities in piñon-juniper systems. We surveyed 43 species of birds and measured vegetation for 1–3 years prior to treatment and 6–7 years post-treatment at 13 locations across Oregon, California, Idaho, Nevada, and Utah. We used structural equation modeling to develop and statistically test our conceptual model that the current bird assembly at a site is structured primarily by the previous bird community with additional drivers from current and surrounding habitat conditions as well as external regional bird dynamics. Treatment reduced woodland cover by >5% at 80 of 378 survey sites. However, habitat change achieved by treatment was highly variable because actual disturbance differed widely in extent and intensity. Biological inertia in the bird community was the strongest single driver; 72% of the variation in the bird assemblage was explained by the community that existed seven years earlier. Greater net reduction in woodlands resulted in slight shifts in the bird community to one having ecotone or shrubland affinities. However, the overall influence of woodland changes from treatment were relatively small and were buffered by other extrinsic factors. Regional bird dynamics did not significantly influence the structure of local bird communities at our sites. Our results suggest that bird communities in piñon-juniper woodlands can be highly stable when management treatments are conducted in areas with more advanced woodland development and at the level of disturbance measured in our study.
Puhakka, Liisa; Salo, Matti; S??ksj?rvi, Ilari E.
In the face of the continuing global biodiversity loss, it is important not only to assess the need for conservation, through e.g. gap analyses, but also to seek practical solutions for protecting biodiversity. Environmentally and socially sustainable tourism can be one such solution. We present a method to spatially link data on conservation needs and tourism-based economic opportunities, using bird-related tourism in Peru as an example. Our analysis highlighted areas in Peru where potential...
Pouwels, Rogier; Sierdsema, Henk; Foppen, Ruud P.B.; Henkens, René J.H.G.; Opdam, Paul F.M.; Eupen, van Michiel
In protected areas managers have to achieve conservation targets while providing opportunities for outdoor recreation. This dual mandate causes conflicts in choosing between management options. Furthermore, the persistence of a protected species within the management unit often depends on how
Pomara, Lars Y; Cooper, Robert J; Petit, Lisa J
We examined the importance of mixed-species flock abundance, individual bird home range size, foraging height, and foraging patch characteristics in predicting the propensity for five Neotropical passerine bird species (Slaty Antwren, Myrmotherula schisticolor; Golden-crowned Warbler, Basileuterus culicivorus; Slate-throated Redstart, Myioborus miniatus; Wilson's Warbler, Wilsonia pusilla; and Black-and-white Warbler, Mniotilta varia) to forage within flocks, rather than solitarily. We used study plots in primary mid-elevation forest and in shade coffee fields in western Panama. We expected that all species would spend as much time as possible flocking, but that the social and environmental factors listed above would limit compatibility between flock movements and individual bird movements, explaining variability in flocking propensity both within and among species. Flocking propensity was well predicted by home range size and flock abundance together, for four of the five species. While flock abundance was uniform across plots, home range sizes varied among species and plots, so that home range size appeared to be the principle factor limiting flocking propensity. Estimates of flock abundance were still required, however, for calculating flocking propensity values. Foraging height and patch characteristics slightly improved predictive ability for the remaining species, M. miniatus. In general, individual birds tended to join flocks whenever one was available inside their home range, regardless of a flock's specific location within the home range. Flocking propensities of individual species were lower in shade coffee fields than in forests, and probably vary across landscapes with variations in habitat. This variability affects the stability and species composition of flocks, and may affect survival rates of individual species.
Goijman, Andrea Paula; Conroy, Michael J; Bernardos, Jaime Nicolás; Zaccagnini, María Elena
Rapid expansion and intensification of agriculture create challenges for the conservation of biodiversity and associated ecosystem services. In Argentina, the total row crop planted area has increased in recent decades with the expansion of soybean cultivation, homogenizing the landscape. In 2003 we started the first long-term, large-scale bird monitoring program in agroecosystems of central Argentina, in portions of the Pampas and Espinal ecoregions. Using data from this program, we evaluated the effect of land use and cover extent on birds between 2003-2012, accounting for imperfect detection probabilities using a Bayesian hierarchical, multi-species and multi-season occupancy model. We tested predictions that species diversity is positively related to habitat heterogeneity, which in intensified agroecosystems is thought to be mediated by food availability; thus the extent of land use and cover is predicted to affect foraging guilds differently. We also infer about ecosystem services provisioning and inform management recommendations for conservation of birds. Overall our results support the predictions. Although many species within each guild responded differently to land use and native forest cover, we identified generalities for most trophic guilds. For example, granivorous gleaners, ground insectivores and omnivores responded negatively to high proportions of soybean, while insectivore gleaners and aerial foragers seemed more tolerant. Habitat heterogeneity would likely benefit most species in an intensified agroecosystem, and can be achieved with a diversity of crops, pastures, and natural areas within the landscape. Although most studied species are insectivores, potentially beneficial for pest control, some guilds such as ground insectivores are poorly represented, suggesting that agricultural intensification reduces ecological functions, which may be recovered through management. Continuation of the bird monitoring program will allow us to continue to
Andrea Paula Goijman
Full Text Available Rapid expansion and intensification of agriculture create challenges for the conservation of biodiversity and associated ecosystem services. In Argentina, the total row crop planted area has increased in recent decades with the expansion of soybean cultivation, homogenizing the landscape. In 2003 we started the first long-term, large-scale bird monitoring program in agroecosystems of central Argentina, in portions of the Pampas and Espinal ecoregions. Using data from this program, we evaluated the effect of land use and cover extent on birds between 2003-2012, accounting for imperfect detection probabilities using a Bayesian hierarchical, multi-species and multi-season occupancy model. We tested predictions that species diversity is positively related to habitat heterogeneity, which in intensified agroecosystems is thought to be mediated by food availability; thus the extent of land use and cover is predicted to affect foraging guilds differently. We also infer about ecosystem services provisioning and inform management recommendations for conservation of birds. Overall our results support the predictions. Although many species within each guild responded differently to land use and native forest cover, we identified generalities for most trophic guilds. For example, granivorous gleaners, ground insectivores and omnivores responded negatively to high proportions of soybean, while insectivore gleaners and aerial foragers seemed more tolerant. Habitat heterogeneity would likely benefit most species in an intensified agroecosystem, and can be achieved with a diversity of crops, pastures, and natural areas within the landscape. Although most studied species are insectivores, potentially beneficial for pest control, some guilds such as ground insectivores are poorly represented, suggesting that agricultural intensification reduces ecological functions, which may be recovered through management. Continuation of the bird monitoring program will allow
O´Dea, Niall; Bastos Araujo, Miguel; Whittaker, Robert J.
Where high species richness and high human population density coincide, potential exists for conflict between the imperatives of species conservation and human development. We examine the coincidence of at-risk bird species richness and human population in the countries of the tropical Andes. We ...
ground is fire-derived, as there were many signs of fire-damaged trees, or relict burnt stumps and in places the grassland was colonized by saplings of Hyphaene palms ...... Much singing, alarm-calling, chasing of neighbours gave the impres- sion breeding had started. Checklist of the birds of Kipini Conservancy, Kenya. 31 ...
Full Text Available This study was aimed at preparing an inventory of the avifauna and to document the species composition of birds during winter in different habitat types of Rosekandy Tea Estate of Cachar District of Assam. Four habitat types, viz., tea plantation, ecotone zone, secondary growth forest and water bodies were selected within the tea estate and surveyed from mid-December 2010 (early winter to mid-April 2011 (late winter covering four months of survey. A total of 88 species were recorded during the survey period with the highest number of species in ecotone zone (n=63, followed by secondary forest (n=60, tea plantation (n=48 and water bodies (n=17. The species were further categorized into different feeding and habitat guilds to study the distribution of bird species in different habitat types according to various guilds.
Vepsaelaeinen, Ville [Finnish Museum of Natural History, P.O. Box 17, University of Helsinki, FI-00014 Helsinki (Finland)
Here, I present the first comparison of the abundance of farmland birds in energy grass fields and in cereal-dominated conventionally cultivated fields (CCFs). I demonstrate that in boreal farmland, skylark (Alauda arvensis) densities were significantly lower in reed canary grass (RCG) (Phalaris arundinacea) fields than in CCFs. I found that during the early breeding season RCG fields and CCFs are equally good habitats, but over the ensuing couple of weeks RCG rapidly grows too tall and dense for field-nesting species. Consequently, RCG is an inferior habitat for skylark for laying replacement clutches (after failure of first nesting) or for a second clutch after one successful nesting. The results imply that if RCG cultivation is to be expanded, the establishment of large monocultures should be avoided in farmland landscapes; otherwise the novel habitat may affect detrimentally the seriously depleted skylark population, and probably also other field-nesting bird species with similar breeding habitats. (author)
Christopher J. Norment
Full Text Available Declining grassland breeding bird populations have led to increased efforts to assess habitat quality, typically by estimating density or relative abundance. Because some grassland habitats may function as ecological traps, a more appropriate metric for determining quality may be breeding success. Between 1994 and 2003 we gathered data on the nest fates of Eastern Meadowlarks (Sturnella magna, Bobolinks (Dolichonyx oryzivorous, and Savannah Sparrows (Passerculus sandwichensis in a series of fallow fields and pastures/hayfields in western New York State. We calculated daily survival probabilities using the Mayfield method, and used the logistic-exposure method to model effects of predictor variables on nest success. Nest survival probabilities were 0.464 for Eastern Meadowlarks (n = 26, 0.483 for Bobolinks (n = 91, and 0.585 for Savannah Sparrows (n = 152. Fledge dates for first clutches ranged between 14 June and 23 July. Only one obligate grassland bird nest was parasitized by Brown-headed Cowbirds (Molothrus ater, for an overall brood parasitism rate of 0.004. Logistic-exposure models indicated that daily nest survival probabilities were higher in pastures/hayfields than in fallow fields. Our results, and those from other studies in the Northeast, suggest that properly managed cool season grassland habitats in the region may not act as ecological traps, and that obligate grassland birds in the region may have greater nest survival probabilities, and lower rates of Brown-headed Cowbird parasitism, than in many parts of the Midwest.
Adam J Bates
Full Text Available Moths are abundant and ubiquitous in vegetated terrestrial environments and are pollinators, important herbivores of wild plants, and food for birds, bats and rodents. In recent years, many once abundant and widespread species have shown sharp declines that have been cited by some as indicative of a widespread insect biodiversity crisis. Likely causes of these declines include agricultural intensification, light pollution, climate change, and urbanization; however, the real underlying cause(s is still open to conjecture. We used data collected from the citizen science Garden Moth Scheme (GMS to explore the spatial association between the abundance of 195 widespread British species of moth, and garden habitat and landscape features, to see if spatial habitat and landscape associations varied for species of differing conservation status. We found that associations with habitat and landscape composition were species-specific, but that there were consistent trends in species richness and total moth abundance. Gardens with more diverse and extensive microhabitats were associated with higher species richness and moth abundance; gardens near to the coast were associated with higher richness and moth abundance; and gardens in more urbanized locations were associated with lower species richness and moth abundance. The same trends were also found for species classified as increasing, declining and vulnerable under IUCN (World Conservation Union criteria. However, vulnerable species were more strongly negatively affected by urbanization than increasing species. Two hypotheses are proposed to explain this observation: (1 that the underlying factors causing declines in vulnerable species (e.g., possibilities include fragmentation, habitat deterioration, agrochemical pollution across Britain are the same in urban areas, but that these deleterious effects are more intense in urban areas; and/or (2 that urban areas can act as ecological traps for some
Bates, Adam J.; Sadler, Jon P.; Grundy, Dave; Lowe, Norman; Davis, George; Baker, David; Bridge, Malcolm; Freestone, Roger; Gardner, David; Gibson, Chris; Hemming, Robin; Howarth, Stephen; Orridge, Steve; Shaw, Mark; Tams, Tom; Young, Heather
Moths are abundant and ubiquitous in vegetated terrestrial environments and are pollinators, important herbivores of wild plants, and food for birds, bats and rodents. In recent years, many once abundant and widespread species have shown sharp declines that have been cited by some as indicative of a widespread insect biodiversity crisis. Likely causes of these declines include agricultural intensification, light pollution, climate change, and urbanization; however, the real underlying cause(s) is still open to conjecture. We used data collected from the citizen science Garden Moth Scheme (GMS) to explore the spatial association between the abundance of 195 widespread British species of moth, and garden habitat and landscape features, to see if spatial habitat and landscape associations varied for species of differing conservation status. We found that associations with habitat and landscape composition were species-specific, but that there were consistent trends in species richness and total moth abundance. Gardens with more diverse and extensive microhabitats were associated with higher species richness and moth abundance; gardens near to the coast were associated with higher richness and moth abundance; and gardens in more urbanized locations were associated with lower species richness and moth abundance. The same trends were also found for species classified as increasing, declining and vulnerable under IUCN (World Conservation Union) criteria. However, vulnerable species were more strongly negatively affected by urbanization than increasing species. Two hypotheses are proposed to explain this observation: (1) that the underlying factors causing declines in vulnerable species (e.g., possibilities include fragmentation, habitat deterioration, agrochemical pollution) across Britain are the same in urban areas, but that these deleterious effects are more intense in urban areas; and/or (2) that urban areas can act as ecological traps for some vulnerable species of
Shokri, Mohammad Reza; Gladstone, William
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.
..., transportation facilities, surface and groundwater delivery facilities, water treatment facilities, solid waste sanitation facilities, public facilities, recreation facilities, energy utility facilities, aggregate mining... Water Agency, and a South Sacramento Habitat Conservation Plan Joint Powers Authority) for activities...
Holland, John M.; Bianchi, Felix J.J.A.; Entling, Martin H.; Moonen, Anna Camilla; Smith, Barbara M.; Jeanneret, Philippe
Different semi-natural habitats occur on farmland, and it is the vegetation's traits and structure that subsequently determine their ability to support natural enemies and their associated contribution to conservation biocontrol. New habitats can be created and existing ones improved with
Wayne Spencer; Heather Rustigian-Romsos; James Strittholt; Robert Scheller; William Zielinski; Richard Truex
An isolated population of the fisher (Martes pennanti) in the southern Sierra Nevada, California, is threatened by small size and habitat alteration from wildfires, fuels management, and other factors. We assessed the population’s status and conservation options for its habitat using a spatially explicit population model coupled with a...
... Rafael Cattle Company; Habitat Conservation Plan; Santa Cruz County, AZ AGENCY: Fish and Wildlife Service... authority of the Applicant on non-Federal lands within 18,440 acres of the San Rafael Ranch in Santa Cruz... lands within the San Rafael Valley of Santa Cruz County, Arizona. These improved habitat conditions...
Otis, David L.; Crumpton, William R.; Green, David; Loan-Wilsey, Anna; Cooper, Tom; Johnson, Rex R.
Justification for investment in restored or constructed wetland projects are often based on presumed net increases in ecosystem services. However, quantitative assessment of performance metrics is often difficult and restricted to a single objective. More comprehensive performance assessments could help inform decision-makers about trade-offs in services provided by alternative restoration program design attributes. The primary goal of the Iowa Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program is to establish wetlands that efficiently remove nitrates from tile-drained agricultural landscapes. A secondary objective is provision of wildlife habitat. We used existing wildlife habitat models to compare relative net change in potential wildlife habitat value for four alternative landscape positions of wetlands within the watershed. Predicted species richness and habitat value for birds, mammals, amphibians, and reptiles generally increased as the wetland position moved lower in the watershed. However, predicted average net increase between pre- and post-project value was dependent on taxonomic group. The increased average wetland area and changes in surrounding upland habitat composition among landscape positions were responsible for these differences. Net change in predicted densities of several grassland bird species at the four landscape positions was variable and species-dependent. Predicted waterfowl breeding activity was greater for lower drainage position wetlands. Although our models are simplistic and provide only a predictive index of potential habitat value, we believe such assessment exercises can provide a tool for coarse-level comparisons of alternative proposed project attributes and a basis for constructing informed hypotheses in auxiliary empirical field studies.
Steven, Rochelle; Smart, James C R; Morrison, Clare; Castley, J Guy
Conservation of biodiversity, including birds, continues to challenge natural-area managers. Stated-preference methods (e.g., choice experiment [CE]) are increasingly used to provide data for valuation of natural ecosystems. We used a CE to calculate birders' willingness to pay for different levels of bioecological attributes (threatened species, endemic species, and diversity) of birding sites with hypothetical entry fees. The CE was delivered at popular birding and avitourism sites in Australia and the United Kingdom. Latent-class modeling results revealed heterogeneous preferences among birders and correspondingly variable willingness to pay. Four clear groups were apparent: quantity-driven birders, special-birds seekers, confused respondents, and price-is-no-object birders. Quantity-driven birders were attracted to sites that deliver high levels of diversity and endemic species for which they were willing to pay $135 and $66 to visit, respectively, above what they were willing to pay to visit a site with low levels of diversity and few endemic and threatened species . Special-bird seekers valued threatened species and high levels of endemic species most (willingness to pay $45 and $46, respectively). Confused respondents' preferences were difficult to determine, but they were the most sensitive to the hypothetical entry fees, unlike the price-is-no-object birders, who were not at all sensitive to cost. Our findings demonstrate that birders are amenable to paying for their preferred birding experience. These payments could provide an alternative source of funding in some avitourism sites on both public and private land. Such alternative revenue streams should be explored and given full consideration in increasingly competitive conservation-financing environments. © 2016 Society for Conservation Biology.
Gillings, Simon; Fuller, Robert J
Farmland bird population trends were examined on a sample of lowland English farms to assess the relative importance of habitat loss and habitat degradation. Data were extracted from 11 farms surveyed by territory mapping between 1966 and 1986 as part of the British Trust for Ornithology's Common Birds Census. The population size of 38 bird species was quantified for each farm in each year. The extents of five non-crop habitats were measured at 4-yearly intervals on each farm. The farms were selected because some had undergone extensive removal of non-crop habitats while others had undergone little or none. Although declines were commonest on farms where the severest habitat loss had taken place, we found no evidence that habitat loss was the main factor causing population declines: all 11 farms had significant numbers of declining species, even where habitat loss was minimal. Furthermore, general linear modelling found no significant effects of habitat loss on population trends and principal-components analysis found limited effects of habitat extent on community composition. These results suggest that habitat loss is of secondary importance in causing farmland bird population declines. We suggest that other processes, such as habitat degradation, may have caused a baseline population decline in at least 10 farmland bird species and that declines may have been exacerbated by localised habitat loss.
Hulme, Mark F.; Vickery, Juliet A.; Green, Rhys E.
(lower yielding farming with more biodiversity within farmland) or a mixed strategy would result in better bird conservation outcomes for a specified level of agricultural production. We surveyed forest and farmland study areas in southern Uganda, measuring the population density of 256 bird species...... and agricultural yield: food energy and gross income. Parametric non-linear functions relating density to yield were fitted. Species were identified as "winners" (total population size always at least as great with agriculture present as without it) or "losers" (total population sometimes or always reduced...
Richard E. Feldman; Pamela G. Krannitz
Garry oak (Quercus garryana) was once a dominant habitat type on southeastern Vancouver Island, British Columbia but urbanization has severely fragmented and reduced its occurrence. This study tests whether bird abundance in remnant patches of Garry oak and adjacent Douglas-fir (Pseudotsuga menziesii) is related to Garry oak volume...
Moens, Michaël A J; Valkiūnas, Gediminas; Paca, Anahi; Bonaccorso, Elisa; Aguirre, Nikolay; Pérez-Tris, Javier
Understanding how parasites fill their ecological niches requires information on the processes involved in the colonization and exploitation of unique host species. Switching to hosts with atypical attributes may favour generalists broadening their niches or may promote specialization and parasite diversification as the consequence. We analysed which blood parasites have successfully colonized hummingbirds, and how they have evolved to exploit such a unique habitat. We specifically asked (i) whether the assemblage of Haemoproteus parasites of hummingbirds is the result of single or multiple colonization events, (ii) to what extent these parasites are specialized in hummingbirds or shared with other birds and (iii) how hummingbirds contribute to sustain the populations of these parasites, in terms of both prevalence and infection intensity. We sampled 169 hummingbirds of 19 species along an elevation gradient in Southern Ecuador to analyse the host specificity, diversity and infection intensity of Haemoproteus by molecular and microscopy techniques. In addition, 736 birds of 112 species were analysed to explore whether hummingbird parasites are shared with other birds. Hummingbirds hosted a phylogenetically diverse assemblage of generalist Haemoproteus lineages shared with other host orders. Among these parasites, Haemoproteus witti stood out as the most generalized. Interestingly, we found that infection intensities of this parasite were extremely low in passerines (with no detectable gametocytes), but very high in hummingbirds, with many gametocytes seen. Moreover, infection intensities of H. witti were positively correlated with the prevalence across host species. Our results show that hummingbirds have been colonized by generalist Haemoproteus lineages on multiple occasions. However, one of these generalist parasites (H. witti) seems to be highly dependent on hummingbirds, which arise as the most relevant reservoirs in terms of both prevalence and
Heinrichs, Julie; Aldridge, Cameron L.; O'Donnell, Michael; Schumaker, Nathan
Prioritizing habitats for conservation is a challenging task, particularly for species with fluctuating populations and seasonally dynamic habitat needs. Although the use of resource selection models to identify and prioritize habitat for conservation is increasingly common, their ability to characterize important long-term habitats for dynamic populations are variable. To examine how habitats might be prioritized differently if resource selection was directly and dynamically linked with population fluctuations and movement limitations among seasonal habitats, we constructed a spatially explicit individual-based model for a dramatically fluctuating population requiring temporally varying resources. Using greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) in Wyoming as a case study, we used resource selection function maps to guide seasonal movement and habitat selection, but emergent population dynamics and simulated movement limitations modified long-term habitat occupancy. We compared priority habitats in RSF maps to long-term simulated habitat use. We examined the circumstances under which the explicit consideration of movement limitations, in combination with population fluctuations and trends, are likely to alter predictions of important habitats. In doing so, we assessed the future occupancy of protected areas under alternative population and habitat conditions. Habitat prioritizations based on resource selection models alone predicted high use in isolated parcels of habitat and in areas with low connectivity among seasonal habitats. In contrast, results based on more biologically-informed simulations emphasized central and connected areas near high-density populations, sometimes predicted to be low selection value. Dynamic models of habitat use can provide additional biological realism that can extend, and in some cases, contradict habitat use predictions generated from short-term or static resource selection analyses. The explicit inclusion of population
Lucas B Fortini
Full Text Available Hawaiian forest birds serve as an ideal group to explore the extent of climate change impacts on at-risk species. Avian malaria constrains many remaining Hawaiian forest bird species to high elevations where temperatures are too cool for malaria's life cycle and its principal mosquito vector. The impact of climate change on Hawaiian forest birds has been a recent focus of Hawaiian conservation biology, and has centered on the links between climate and avian malaria. To elucidate the differential impacts of projected climate shifts on species with known varying niches, disease resistance and tolerance, we use a comprehensive database of species sightings, regional climate projections and ensemble distribution models to project distribution shifts for all Hawaiian forest bird species. We illustrate that, under a likely scenario of continued disease-driven distribution limitation, all 10 species with highly reliable models (mostly narrow-ranged, single-island endemics are expected to lose >50% of their range by 2100. Of those, three are expected to lose all range and three others are expected to lose >90% of their range. Projected range loss was smaller for several of the more widespread species; however improved data and models are necessary to refine future projections. Like other at-risk species, Hawaiian forest birds have specific habitat requirements that limit the possibility of range expansion for most species, as projected expansion is frequently in areas where forest habitat is presently not available (such as recent lava flows. Given the large projected range losses for all species, protecting high elevation forest alone is not an adequate long-term strategy for many species under climate change. We describe the types of additional conservation actions practitioners will likely need to consider, while providing results to help with such considerations.
Dinesh BHATT, Kamal Kant JOSHI
Full Text Available The Indian subcontinent is amongst the biologically better known parts of the tropics and its bird fauna has been well documented. However, avian community composition and diversity along elevational gradients and amongst habitat types remains unclear in India. We attempted to estimate bird assemblages in terms of diversity, species composition, status and abundance in urban and forest habitats of Nainital district of Uttarakhand (350–2450 m asl; 29°N, Western Himalayas. We sampled different elevational gradients and to understand the effect of urbanization and season on avian community composition. Field studies were conducted during January 2005 to January 2007. Results indicated that the forest had more complex bird community structure in terms of higher species richness (14.35 vs 8.69, higher species diversity (Shannon’s index 4.00 vs 3.54, higher evenness (0.838 vs 0.811 and more rare species (17 vs 5 as compared to urban habitat. However, the abundance of 11 species was higher in urban habitats. Bird Species Richness (BSR varied considerably among study areas (91 to 113 species, was highest (113 species at mid elevation (1450–1700 m asl and decreased (22 species at high elevation (1900–2450 m asl. It seems that high BSR at mid altitudes is not caused by the presence of a group of mid altitude specialists but rather that there is an overlap in the distribution of low land and high elevation specialists at this altitude. BSR and Bird Species Diversity fluctuated across seasons but not habitat type [Current Zoology 57 (3: 318–329, 2011].
... conservation benefits to this species. The applicant would receive assurances under the ``No Surprises... public scoping period during which interested parties were invited to provide written comments expressing...
Pindilli, Emily; Casey, Frank
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.
Crampton, Lisa H.; Brinck, Kevin W.; Pias, Kyle E.; Heindl, Barbara A. P.; Savre, Thomas; Diegmann, Julia S.; Paxton, Eben H.
Accurate estimates of the distribution and abundance of endangered species are crucial to determine their status and plan recovery options, but such estimates are often difficult to obtain for species with low detection probabilities or that occur in inaccessible habitats. The Puaiohi (Myadestes palmeri) is a cryptic species endemic to Kauaʻi, Hawai‘i, and restricted to high elevation ravines that are largely inaccessible. To improve current population estimates, we developed an approach to model distribution and abundance of Puaiohi across their range by linking occupancy surveys to habitat characteristics, territory density, and landscape attributes. Occupancy per station ranged from 0.17 to 0.82, and was best predicted by the number and vertical extent of cliffs, cliff slope, stream width, and elevation. To link occupancy estimates with abundance, we used territory mapping data to estimate the average number of territories per survey station (0.44 and 0.66 territories per station in low and high occupancy streams, respectively), and the average number of individuals per territory (1.9). We then modeled Puaiohi occupancy as a function of two remote-sensed measures of habitat (stream sinuosity and elevation) to predict occupancy across its entire range. We combined predicted occupancy with estimates of birds per station to produce a global population estimate of 494 (95% CI 414–580) individuals. Our approach is a model for using multiple independent sources of information to accurately track population trends, and we discuss future directions for modeling abundance of this, and other, rare species.
Zingstra, H.L.; Kovachev, A.; Kitnaes, K.; Tzonev, R.; Dimova, D.; Tzvetkov, P.
This executive summary describes the methodology for assessing the favourable conservation status of N2000 habitats and species on site level in Bulgaria and gives guidelines for its application. The methodology was developed in the frame of the BBI/Matra project 2006/014 “Favourable Conservation
D. Todd Jones-Farrand; Todd M. Fearer; Wayne E. Thogmartin; Frank R. Thompson; Mark D. Nelson; John M. Tirpak
Selection of a modeling approach is an important step in the conservation planning process, but little guidance is available. We compared two statistical and three theoretical habitat modeling approaches representing those currently being used for avian conservation planning at landscape and regional scales: hierarchical spatial count (HSC), classification and...
J. Ryan. Zimmerling
Full Text Available We estimated impacts on birds from the development and operation of wind turbines in Canada considering both mortality due to collisions and loss of nesting habitat. We estimated collision mortality using data from carcass searches for 43 wind farms, incorporating correction factors for scavenger removal, searcher efficiency, and carcasses that fell beyond the area searched. On average, 8.2 ± 1.4 birds (95% C.I. were killed per turbine per year at these sites, although the numbers at individual wind farms varied from 0 - 26.9 birds per turbine per year. Based on 2955 installed turbines (the number installed in Canada by December 2011, an estimated 23,300 birds (95% C.I. 20,000 - 28,300 would be killed from collisions with turbines each year. We estimated direct habitat loss based on data from 32 wind farms in Canada. On average, total habitat loss per turbine was 1.23 ha, which corresponds to an estimated total habitat loss due to wind farms nationwide of 3635 ha. Based on published estimates of nest density, this could represent habitat for ~5700 nests of all species. Assuming nearby habitats are saturated, and 2 adults displaced per nest site, effects of direct habitat loss are less than that of direct mortality. Installed wind capacity is growing rapidly, and is predicted to increase more than 10-fold over the next 10-15 years, which could lead to direct mortality of approximately 233,000 birds / year, and displacement of 57,000 pairs. Despite concerns about the impacts of biased correction factors on the accuracy of mortality estimates, these values are likely much lower than those from collisions with some other anthropogenic sources such as windows, vehicles, or towers, or habitat loss due to many other forms of development. Species composition data suggest that < 0.2% of the population of any species is currently affected by mortality or displacement from wind turbine development. Therefore, population level impacts are unlikely
Ryan T. DiGaudio
Full Text Available http://escholarship.org/uc/item/0dn9f9b4In California’s Central Valley, grassland and oak savannah ecosystems provide multiple economic and social benefits, ecosystem services, and vital bird habitat. There is a growing interest in protecting, restoring, and managing these ecosystems, and the Central Valley Joint Venture (CVJV provides leadership in the formulation of conservation goals and objectives. We defined a long-term goal of protecting, restoring, and managing Central Valley grassland and oak savannah ecosystems so that they are capable of supporting genetically robust, self-sustaining, and resilient wildlife populations. To measure progress toward this goal, we selected a suite of 12 landbird focal species that primarily breed in grasslands and oak savannahs as indicators of the state of these ecosystems on the Central Valley floor (primary focus area and in the Central Valley’s surrounding foothills (secondary focus area. Using data on current densities and habitat extent, we estimated that at least three of the focal species populations in the primary focus area and at least two of the focal species populations in the secondary focus area are currently small (<10,000 individuals and may be vulnerable to extirpation. Furthermore, at least two species appear to have steeply declining population trends. We defined long-term (100-year population objectives for each focal species that we expect to meet the goal of genetically robust, self-sustaining, and resilient populations. We then estimated corresponding short-term (10-year habitat objectives of 4,183 ha of additional grassland and 3,433 ha of additional oak savannah that will be required to make progress toward the long-term objectives. We expect that habitat restoration and enhancement efforts aimed at reaching these long-term conservation objectives will result in improvements to the function of Central Valley grassland and oak savannah ecosystems.
Steven G. Platt
Full Text Available Birdlimes are adhesive entangling compounds that passively capture birds by binding them to a substrate and rendering flight feathers useless. We investigated birdlime use among indigenous Chin hunters during a wildlife survey of Natma Taung National Park (NTNP in western Myanmar (May-June 2011. We found that birdlime is prepared from the sap of various banyan trees (Ficus spp. collected during the annual dry season (December-May. Birdlime is prepared by boiling sap to remove water, and the finished product is a readily malleable and extremely adhesive compound known locally as nghet phan te kaw (“bird glue”. Hunters employ four principal strategies when using birdlime: 1 limed sticks are placed at waterholes and springs; 2 limed sticks are placed in fruiting trees or nocturnal roost sites; 3 limed sticks are positioned at prominent vantage points and hunters mimic vocalizations to attract birds; 4 small insects (possibly termites are affixed to a limed pole and serve as bait to attract birds. Large numbers (>200 of birds can reportedly be captured during a single day by hunters using birdlime. At least 186 (63.9% of 291 species of birds occurring in Natma Taung National Park are thought to be vulnerable to this non-selective hunting strategy. The endangered white-browed nuthatch (Sitta victoriae Rippon Sittidae, a poorly-studied endemic species restricted to high elevation Oak-Rhododendron forest in NTNP, is vulnerable to birdliming, although the impact of hunting on populations remains unclear. We recommend that future investigations determine the sustainability of the Chin bird harvest by relating hunter off-take to recruitment and survivorship of nuthatches. If conservation action is deemed prudent, management plans should be developed in close collaboration with local Chin communities.
This review identifies some intrinsic and extrinsic factors that tend to drive the destruction of habitat, game poaching and unsustainable utilization of plants products by communities surrounding many protected areas around the world, leading to wildlife and plant species decline. Intrinsic factors are basic needs of the locals; ...
Kas Dumroese; Jeremy Pinto; Deborah M. Finch
Greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) and monarch butterflies (Danaus plexippus) and other pollinating insects have garnered a lot of attention recently from federal and state wildlife officials. These two species and pollinators share dwindling sagebrush habitat in the western United States that is putting their populations at risk. Sagebrush...
Cardador, Laura; De Cáceres, Miquel; Bota, Gerard; Giralt, David; Casas, Fabián; Arroyo, Beatriz; Mougeot, François; Cantero-Martínez, Carlos; Moncunill, Judit; Butler, Simon J; Brotons, Lluís
European agriculture is undergoing widespread changes that are likely to have profound impacts on farmland biodiversity. The development of tools that allow an assessment of the potential biodiversity effects of different land-use alternatives before changes occur is fundamental to guiding management decisions. In this study, we develop a resource-based model framework to estimate habitat suitability for target species, according to simple information on species' key resource requirements (diet, foraging habitat and nesting site), and examine whether it can be used to link land-use and local species' distribution. We take as a study case four steppe bird species in a lowland area of the north-eastern Iberian Peninsula. We also compare the performance of our resource-based approach to that obtained through habitat-based models relating species' occurrence and land-cover variables. Further, we use our resource-based approach to predict the effects that change in farming systems can have on farmland bird habitat suitability and compare these predictions with those obtained using the habitat-based models. Habitat suitability estimates generated by our resource-based models performed similarly (and better for one study species) than habitat based-models when predicting current species distribution. Moderate prediction success was achieved for three out of four species considered by resource-based models and for two of four by habitat-based models. Although, there is potential for improving the performance of resource-based models, they provide a structure for using available knowledge of the functional links between agricultural practices, provision of key resources and the response of organisms to predict potential effects of changing land-uses in a variety of context or the impacts of changes such as altered management practices that are not easily incorporated into habitat-based models.
Full Text Available European agriculture is undergoing widespread changes that are likely to have profound impacts on farmland biodiversity. The development of tools that allow an assessment of the potential biodiversity effects of different land-use alternatives before changes occur is fundamental to guiding management decisions. In this study, we develop a resource-based model framework to estimate habitat suitability for target species, according to simple information on species' key resource requirements (diet, foraging habitat and nesting site, and examine whether it can be used to link land-use and local species' distribution. We take as a study case four steppe bird species in a lowland area of the north-eastern Iberian Peninsula. We also compare the performance of our resource-based approach to that obtained through habitat-based models relating species' occurrence and land-cover variables. Further, we use our resource-based approach to predict the effects that change in farming systems can have on farmland bird habitat suitability and compare these predictions with those obtained using the habitat-based models. Habitat suitability estimates generated by our resource-based models performed similarly (and better for one study species than habitat based-models when predicting current species distribution. Moderate prediction success was achieved for three out of four species considered by resource-based models and for two of four by habitat-based models. Although, there is potential for improving the performance of resource-based models, they provide a structure for using available knowledge of the functional links between agricultural practices, provision of key resources and the response of organisms to predict potential effects of changing land-uses in a variety of context or the impacts of changes such as altered management practices that are not easily incorporated into habitat-based models.
Michael J Whitehouse
Full Text Available Previous studies of the consequences for breeding birds of climate change have explored how their populations may respond to increasing temperatures. However, few have considered the likely outcome of predicted extreme conditions and the relative vulnerability of populations in different habitats. Here, we compare phenology and breeding success in great tits and blue tits over a 10 year period, including the extremely harsh conditions during spring 2012, at three sites in eastern England--mixed deciduous woodland, riparian and urban habitat. Production, measured as brood biomass, was significantly lower in 2012 compared with the previous 9 years, with the decrease in productivity relatively greatest in woodland habitat. Production was related to hatch delay, i.e. birds not initiating incubation immediately after clutch completion, which was more common in 2012 than in previous years. The best predictor of hatch delay was daytime temperature (not nighttime minimum temperature and rainfall, which convincingly reflected low growth and activity of caterpillar prey. We found that birds breeding in riparian and urban habitats were less vulnerable to the extremes of weather than those breeding in mixed deciduous woodland.
Amos, Nevil; Harrisson, Katherine A; Radford, James Q; White, Matt; Newell, Graeme; Mac Nally, Ralph; Sunnucks, Paul; Pavlova, Alexandra
Loss of functional connectivity following habitat loss and fragmentation could drive species declines. A comprehensive understanding of fragmentation effects on functional connectivity of an ecological assemblage requires investigation of multiple species with different mobilities, at different spatial scales, for each sex, and in different landscapes. Based on published data on mobility and ecological responses to fragmentation of 10 woodland-dependent birds, and using simulation studies, we predicted that (1) fragmentation would impede dispersal and gene flow of eight "decliners" (species that disappear from suitable patches when landscape-level tree cover falls below species-specific thresholds), but not of two "tolerant" species (whose occurrence in suitable habitat patches is independent of landscape tree cover); and that fragmentation effects would be stronger (2) in the least mobile species, (3) in the more philopatric sex, and (4) in the more fragmented region. We tested these predictions by evaluating spatially explicit isolation-by-landscape-resistance models of gene flow in fragmented landscapes across a 50 x 170 km study area in central Victoria, Australia, using individual and population genetic distances. To account for sex-biased dispersal and potential scale- and configuration-specific effects, we fitted models specific to sex and geographic zones. As predicted, four of the least mobile decliners showed evidence of reduced genetic connectivity. The responses were strongly sex specific, but in opposite directions in the two most sedentary species. Both tolerant species and (unexpectedly) four of the more mobile decliners showed no reduction in gene flow. This is unlikely to be due to time lags because more mobile species develop genetic signatures of fragmentation faster than do less mobile ones. Weaker genetic effects were observed in the geographic zone with more aggregated vegetation, consistent with gene flow being unimpeded by landscape
Peralvo, M.F.; Cuesta, F.; Van Manen, F.
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
Ethiopia harbours 837 bird species, 18 of which are endemic and a further 14 near endemic (shared with Eritrea) (Ash & Atkins 2009). To promote the conservation of these birds and their habitats, 69 Important Bird Areas (IBAs) were identified for. Ethiopia (Fishpool & Evans 2001). These important areas were selected ...
Buchanan, Graeme M.; Donald, Paul F.; Butchart, Stuart H. M.
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
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
Buchanan, Graeme M; Donald, Paul F; Butchart, Stuart H M
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
Terrado, Marta; Sabater, Sergi; Chaplin-Kramer, Becky; Mandle, Lisa; Ziv, Guy; Acuña, Vicenç
There is a growing pressure of human activities on natural habitats, which leads to biodiversity losses. To mitigate the impact of human activities, environmental policies are developed and implemented, but their effects are commonly not well understood because of the lack of tools to predict the effects of conservation policies on habitat quality and/or diversity. We present a straightforward model for the simultaneous assessment of terrestrial and aquatic habitat quality in river basins as a function of land use and anthropogenic threats to habitat that could be applied under different management scenarios to help understand the trade-offs of conservation actions. We modify the InVEST model for the assessment of terrestrial habitat quality and extend it to freshwater habitats. We assess the reliability of the model in a severely impaired basin by comparing modeled results to observed terrestrial and aquatic biodiversity data. Estimated habitat quality is significantly correlated with observed terrestrial vascular plant richness (R(2)=0.76) and diversity of aquatic macroinvertebrates (R(2)=0.34), as well as with ecosystem functions such as in-stream phosphorus retention (R(2)=0.45). After that, we analyze different scenarios to assess the suitability of the model to inform changes in habitat quality under different conservation strategies. We believe that the developed model can be useful to assess potential levels of biodiversity, and to support conservation planning given its capacity to forecast the effects of management actions in river basins. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Stolen, Eric D.; Breininger, David R.; Smith, Rebecca B.; Quincy, Charlie (Technical Monitor)
This report summarizes results of the first eleven years of monthly aerial surveys of wading bird use of foraging habitats within impoundments on the Kennedy Space Center/Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge. Some impoundments were used much more heavily by wading birds than were others. Analysis suggests that an increase in interspersion of open water and vegetated habitats is preferred foraging habitat. Many wading bird species increased their use of vegetated habitat in Fall and Winter when impoundments were flooded. The mean number of wading birds per survey was greatest during the Pre-nesting and Nesting seasons, declined during Post-nesting season, and was lowest during Winter when water levels within impoundments were high. During these times, shallow habitat along the IRL shoreline provided alternative habitats for wading birds. Various measures of monthly precipitation and impoundment water level were well correlated with the numbers of wading birds observed. Numbers of nesting attempts was steady during the study period, with the exception of an unusually high number of attempts in 1990. White Ibis accounted for over half of all wading bird nests counted. The mean number of nests per colony decreased during the study period, and the number of individual colonies increased.
The Cross River gorilla is one of Africa's most critically endangered species of primates. There is scanty information on the conservation status of this population of gorillas. This work was undertaken to ascertain the seasonal migration pattern, the feeding habits and the population status of this species of gorilla with a view ...
Full Text Available Francois' langur (Trachypithecus francoisi is an endangered primate and endemic to the limestone forests of the tropical and subtropical zone of northern Vietnam and South-west China with a population of about 2,000 individuals. Conservation efforts are hampered by limited knowledge of habitat preference in its main distribution area. We surveyed the distribution of Francois' langur and modeled the relationship between the probability of use and habitat features in Mayanghe National Nature Reserve, Guizhou, China. The main objectives of this study were to provide quantitative information on habitat preference, estimating the availability of suitable habitat, and providing management guidelines for the effective conservation of this species. By comparing 92 used locations with habitat available in the reserve, we found that Francois' langur was mainly distributed along valleys and proportionally, used bamboo forests and mixed conifer-broadleaf forests more than their availability, whereas they tended to avoid shrubby areas and coniferous forests. The langur tended to occur at sites with lower elevation, steeper slope, higher tree canopy density, and a close distance to roads and water. The habitat occupancy probability was best modeled by vegetation type, vegetation coverage, elevation, slope degree, distances to nearest water, paved road, and farmland edge. The suitable habitat in this reserve concentrated in valleys and accounted for about 25% of the total reserve area. Our results showed that Francois' langur was not only restricted at the landscapes level at the regions with karst topography, limestone cliffs, and caves, but it also showed habitat preference at the local scale. Therefore, the protection and restoration of the langur preferred habitats such as mixed conifer-broadleaf forests are important and urgent for the conservation of this declining species.
Vilchis, L Ignacio; Johnson, Christine K; Evenson, Joseph R; Pearson, Scott F; Barry, Karen L; Davidson, Peter; Raphael, Martin G; Gaydos, Joseph K
Identifying drivers of ecosystem change in large marine ecosystems is central for their effective management and conservation. This is a sizable challenge, particularly in ecosystems transcending international borders, where monitoring and conservation of long-range migratory species and their habitats are logistically and financially problematic. Here, using tools borrowed from epidemiology, we elucidated common drivers underlying species declines within a marine ecosystem, much in the way epidemiological analyses evaluate risk factors for negative health outcomes to better inform decisions. Thus, we identified ecological traits and dietary specializations associated with species declines in a community of marine predators that could be reflective of ecosystem change. To do so, we integrated count data from winter surveys collected in long-term marine bird monitoring programs conducted throughout the Salish Sea—a transboundary large marine ecosystem in North America's Pacific Northwest. We found that decadal declines in winter counts were most prevalent among pursuit divers such as alcids (Alcidae) and grebes (Podicipedidae) that have specialized diets based on forage fish, and that wide-ranging species without local breeding colonies were more prone to these declines. Although a combination of factors is most likely driving declines of diving forage fish specialists, we propose that changes in the availability of low-trophic prey may be forcing wintering range shifts of diving birds in the Salish Sea. Such a synthesis of long-term trends in a marine predator community not only provides unique insights into the types of species that are at risk of extirpation and why, but may also inform proactive conservation measures to counteract threats—information that is paramount for species-specific and ecosystem-wide conservation. Evaluación de las Correlaciones Ecológicas de las Declinaciones de Aves Marinas para Informar a la Conservación Marina Resumen La
Jiguet, Frédéric; Devictor, Vincent; Julliard, Romain; Couvet, Denis
Volunteer-based standardized monitoring of birds has been widely implemented in Europe and North America. In France, a breeding bird survey is running since 1989 and offers keen birdwatchers to count spring birds annually during 5 min exactly on 10 fix points within a randomly selected square. The first goal of such breeding bird surveys is to measure temporal trends in order to detect possible species declines. Combining annual indices of species sharing ecological affinities or a protected/red list status further provides biodiversity indicators for policy makers. Because the sampling effort is similar among sites, and because the initial selection of monitored sites is random, the temporal trends can be considered representative of national trends, and spatial comparisons of the obtained metrics are possible. Species abundance, community richness but also community specialization and average trophic level can be estimated for each site and each year and further related to the wide range of habitat and landscape characteristics and to agricultural or forestry practices. The large number of sites allows overcoming the opposition between adaptive and passive monitoring, making such schemes fitted to adaptive monitoring. This provides opportunities to determine which type of management or practices favour biodiversity. The comparison of population fate or community dynamics across a wide range of climates and temperatures, e.g. from southern to northern Europe, revealed how European birds are already affected by climate change. Bird communities are shifting northwards, but at a slower rate than temperatures, while bird populations have larger growth rates away from their hot thermal limit. Finally, such large-scale long-term monitoring data on a complete taxonomic group (Aves) is original and offers the opportunity to compare different measures of biological diversity, such as taxonomic, phylogenetic and functional diversity. Such a citizen science scheme is an
Franco, A.; Franzoi, P.; Malavasi, S.; Zucchetta, M.; Torricelli, P.
Ensuring biodiversity, through the conservation of natural habitats, such as wetlands, and of their wild flora and fauna, is the main objective of the Habitat and Species Directive 92/43/EC. Within this framework, two species of Community interest, Pomatoschistus canestrinii and Knipowitschia panizzae (Gobiidae, Osteichthyes), endemisms of the Northern Adriatic lagoons, were considered. The population structure, reproductive effort, somatic growth and production of such species were investigated in marsh habitats of the Venice lagoon, as indicators of the status of the populations and their habitats. The lagoon marsh habitats hosted abundant and well structured populations, functioning also as breeding areas for these species. A certain spatial variability was also observed, possibly related to the shelter conditions of different marsh sub-habitats (e.g. marsh creeks vs. adjacent mudflats). These results were discussed in the light of the available ecological knowledge on the two species, with a particular attention to the conservation priority focused on the protection of biodiversity and of key habitats.
Singh, Minerva; Tokola, Timo; Hou, Zhengyang; Notarnicola, Claudia
Abstract Avian species persistence in a forest patch is strongly related to the degree of isolation and size of a forest patch and the vegetation structure within a patch and its matrix are important predictors of bird habitat suitability. A combination of space?borne optical (Landsat), ALOS?PALSAR (radar), and airborne Light Detection and Ranging (LiDAR) data was used for assessing variation in forest structure across forest patches that had undergone different levels of forest degradation i...
Willis, E O
Some 231 birds were recorded on a sandy plateau in central Sao Paulo, in an area forming a natural "habitat spectrum", from dry or wet grasslands to bushy ones (campo-cerrado) plus gallery scrub, marshes, and low woods. Subtracting 12 species that mostly flew over, and 56 species that seemed to be vagrants or accidental visitors, 163 species were regular (including 14 that center in nearby anthropogenically-modified zones). The 69 in gallery areas are mostly regionally common woodland species, but one southeastern species has disappeared over the years and three northwestern dry-forest species have entered. The 81 grassland species include several rare birds, and hence are important despite exhibiting lower biodiversity than in regional forest areas. Seven rare species disappeared over the years, some due to lack of fires, others because of either recent "greenhouse" dry years or protected vegetation growing to taller campo-cerrado. Several other species are becoming rare. Low vegetation forms a spectrum of temporally unstable habitats that change rapidly; one needs actively managed large areas and corridors even though many open-area birds can fly long distances to varying habitat patches.
E. O. Willis
Full Text Available Some 231 birds were recorded on a sandy plateau in central São Paulo, in an area forming a natural "habitat spectrum", from dry or wet grasslands to bushy ones (campo-cerrado plus gallery scrub, marshes, and low woods. Subtracting 12 species that mostly flew over, and 56 species that seemed to be vagrants or accidental visitors, 163 species were regular (including 14 that center in nearby anthropogenically-modified zones. The 69 in gallery areas are mostly regionally common woodland species, but one southeastern species has disappeared over the years and three northwestern dry-forest species have entered. The 81 grassland species include several rare birds, and hence are important despite exhibiting lower biodiversity than in regional forest areas. Seven rare species disappeared over the years, some due to lack of fires, others because of either recent "greenhouse" dry years or protected vegetation growing to taller campo-cerrado. Several other species are becoming rare. Low vegetation forms a spectrum of temporally unstable habitats that change rapidly; one needs actively managed large areas and corridors even though many open-area birds can fly long distances to varying habitat patches.
Full Text Available In the face of the continuing global biodiversity loss, it is important not only to assess the need for conservation, through e.g. gap analyses, but also to seek practical solutions for protecting biodiversity. Environmentally and socially sustainable tourism can be one such solution. We present a method to spatially link data on conservation needs and tourism-based economic opportunities, using bird-related tourism in Peru as an example. Our analysis highlighted areas in Peru where potential for such projects could be particularly high. Several areas within the central and northern Andean regions, as well as within the lowland Amazonian regions of Madre de Dios and Loreto emerge as promising for this type of activity. Mechanisms to implement conservation in these areas include e.g. conservation and ecotourism concessions, private conservation areas, and conservation easements. Some of these mechanisms also offer opportunities for local communities seeking to secure their traditional land ownership and use rights. (Spanish language abstract, Abstract S1.
Puhakka, Liisa; Salo, Matti; Sääksjärvi, Ilari E
In the face of the continuing global biodiversity loss, it is important not only to assess the need for conservation, through e.g. gap analyses, but also to seek practical solutions for protecting biodiversity. Environmentally and socially sustainable tourism can be one such solution. We present a method to spatially link data on conservation needs and tourism-based economic opportunities, using bird-related tourism in Peru as an example. Our analysis highlighted areas in Peru where potential for such projects could be particularly high. Several areas within the central and northern Andean regions, as well as within the lowland Amazonian regions of Madre de Dios and Loreto emerge as promising for this type of activity. Mechanisms to implement conservation in these areas include e.g. conservation and ecotourism concessions, private conservation areas, and conservation easements. Some of these mechanisms also offer opportunities for local communities seeking to secure their traditional land ownership and use rights. (Spanish language abstract, Abstract S1).
Puhakka, Liisa; Salo, Matti; Sääksjärvi, Ilari E.
In the face of the continuing global biodiversity loss, it is important not only to assess the need for conservation, through e.g. gap analyses, but also to seek practical solutions for protecting biodiversity. Environmentally and socially sustainable tourism can be one such solution. We present a method to spatially link data on conservation needs and tourism-based economic opportunities, using bird-related tourism in Peru as an example. Our analysis highlighted areas in Peru where potential for such projects could be particularly high. Several areas within the central and northern Andean regions, as well as within the lowland Amazonian regions of Madre de Dios and Loreto emerge as promising for this type of activity. Mechanisms to implement conservation in these areas include e.g. conservation and ecotourism concessions, private conservation areas, and conservation easements. Some of these mechanisms also offer opportunities for local communities seeking to secure their traditional land ownership and use rights. (Spanish language abstract, Abstract S1). PMID:22132078
Habitat conservation plans (HCPs) permitted under Section 10(A) of the federal Endangered Species Act, have been increasingly used to overcome conflicts between urban development and species conservation. This article profiles one such HCP, the Coachella Valley (CA) Fringe-Toed Lizard Habitat Conservation Plan. The second HCP officially approved by the US Fish and Wildlife Service, the Coachella Valley case is frequently cited as a model for resolving conservation and development conflicts. The article begins with a discussion of the use of HCPs, and then provides a detailed discussion of Coachella Valley experience, its history, specific provisions, and success to date. A final section examines whether Coachella Valley does in fact represent a positive model. It is argued that the HCP has been less than fully successful and leaves unresolved a series of fundamental ethical and policy questions concerning the protection of endangered species.
Mastrangelo, Matias E; Gavin, Michael C
Intensification of food production in tropical landscapes in the absence of land-use planning can pose a major threat to biological diversity. Decisions on whether to spatially integrate or segregate lands for production and conservation depend in part on the functional relations between biological diversity and agricultural productivity. We measured diversity, density, and species composition of birds along a gradient of production intensification on an agricultural frontier of the Argentine Chaco, where dry tropical forests are cleared for cattle production. Bird species diversity in intact forests was higher than in any type of cattle-production system. Bird species richness decreased nonlinearly as cattle yield increased. Intermediate-intensity silvopastoral systems, those in which forest understory is selectively cleared to grow pastures of non-native plants beneath the tree canopy, produced 80% of the mean cattle yield obtained in pastures on cleared areas and were occupied by 70-90% of the number of bird species present in the nearest forest fragments. Densities of >50% of bird species were significantly lower in open pastures than in silvopastoral systems. Therefore, intermediate-intensity silvopastoral systems may have the greatest potential to sustain cattle yield and conserve a large percentage of bird species. However, compared with low-intensity production systems, in which forest structure and extent were intact, intermediate-intensity silvopastoral systems supported significantly fewer forest-restricted bird species and fewer frugivorous birds. These data suggest that the integration of production and conservation through intermediate-intensity silvopastoral systems combined with the protection of forest fragments may be required to maintain cattle yield, bird diversity, and conservation of forest-restricted species in this agricultural frontier. ©2012 Society for Conservation Biology.
Full Text Available Conservation of habitats is a major approach in the implementation of biodiversity conservation strategies. Because of limited resources and competing interests not all habitats can be conserved to the same extent and a prioritization is needed. One criterion for prioritization is the responsibility countries have for the protection of a particular habitat type. National responsibility reflects the effects the loss of a particular habitat type within the focal region (usually a country has on the global persistence of that habitat type. Whereas the concept has been used already successfully for species, it has not yet been developed for habitats. Here we present such a method that is derived from similar approaches for species. We further investigated the usability of different biogeographic and environmental maps in our determination of national responsibilities for habitats. For Europe, several different maps exist, including (1 the Indicative European Map of Biogeographic Regions, (2 Udvardy’s biogeographic provinces, (3 WWF ecoregions, and (4 the environmental zones of Metzger et al. (2005. The latter is particularly promising, as the map of environmental zones has recently been extended to cover the whole world (Metzger et al. in press, allowing the application of our methodology at a global scale, making it highly comparable between countries and applicable across variable scales (e.g. regions, countries. Here, we determined the national responsibilities for 71 forest habitats. We further compared the national responsibility class distribution in regard to the use of different reference areas, geographical Europe, Western Palearctic and Palearctic. We found that the distributions of natural responsibility classes resembled each other largely for the different combinations of reference area and biogeographic map. The most common rank in all cases was the “medium” rank. Most notably, with increasing size of the reference area, a shift
Bruno A. Walther
Full Text Available Migratory bird species breeding in the Palearctic and overwintering in sub-Saharan Africa face multiple conservation challenges. As a result, many of these species have declined in recent decades, some dramatically. We therefore used the best available database for the distribution of 68 passerine migrants in sub-Saharan Africa to determine priority regions for their conservation. After modeling each species' distribution using BIOMOD software, we entered the resulting species distributions at a 1Â° Ã - 1Â° grid resolution into MARXAN software. We then used several different selection procedures that varied the boundary length modifier, species penalty factor, and the inclusion of grid cells with high human footprint and with protected areas. While results differed between selection procedures, four main regions were regularly selected: (1 one centered on southern Mali; (2 one including Eritrea, central Sudan, and northern Ethiopia; (3 one encompassing southwestern Kenya and much of Tanzania and Uganda; and (4 one including much of Zimbabwe and southwestern Zambia. We recommend that these four regions become priority regions for research and conservation efforts for the bird species considered in this study.
Wilson, Howard B.; Meijaard, Erik; Venter, Oscar; Ancrenaz, Marc; Possingham, Hugh P.
The Sumatran orangutan is currently listed by the IUCN as critically endangered and the Bornean species as endangered. Unless effective conservation measures are enacted quickly, most orangutan populations without adequate protection face a dire future. Two main strategies are being pursued to conserve orangutans: (i) rehabilitation and reintroduction of ex-captive or displaced individuals; and (ii) protection of their forest habitat to abate threats like deforestation and hunting. These stra...
LaGory, K.E.; Chang, Young-Soo; Chun, K.C.; Reeves, T.; Liebich, R.; Smith, K.
This report, conducted from May through July 2000, addressed the potential effect of compressor noise on breeding birds in gas-production areas administered by the FFO, specifically in the Rattlesnake Canyon Habitat Management Area northeast of Farmington, New Mexico. The study was designed to quantify and characterize noise output from these compressors and to determine if compressor noise affected bird populations in adjacent habitat during the breeding season.
Hierl, Lauren A; Franklin, Janet; Deutschman, Douglas H; Regan, Helen M; Johnson, Brenda S
In nature reserves and habitat conservation areas, monitoring is required to determine if reserves are meeting their goals for preserving species, ecological communities, and ecosystems. Increasingly, reserves are established to protect multiple species and communities, each with their own conservation goals and objectives. As resources are always inadequate to monitor all components, criteria must be applied to prioritize both species and communities for monitoring and management. While methods for prioritizing species based on endangerment or risk have been established, approaches to prioritizing ecological communities for monitoring are not well developed, despite a long-standing emphasis on communities as target elements in reserve design. We established guidelines based on four criteria derived from basic principles of conservation and landscape ecology--extent, representativeness, fragmentation, and endangerment--to prioritize communities in the San Diego Multiple Species Conservation Plan (MSCP). The MSCP was one of the first multiple-species habitat conservation areas established in California, USA, and it has a complex spatial configuration because of the patterns of surrounding land use, which are largely urbanized. In this case study, high priority communities for monitoring include coastal sage scrub (high endangerment, underrepresented within the reserve relative to the region, and moderately fragmented), freshwater wetlands, and coastal habitats (both have high fragmentation, moderate endangerment and representativeness, and low areal extent). This framework may be useful to other conservation planners and land managers for prioritizing the most significant and at-risk communities for monitoring.
Matchett, Elliott L.; Fleskes, Joseph P.; Young, Charles A.; Purkey, David R.
The amount and quality of natural resources available for terrestrial and aquatic wildlife habitats are expected to decrease throughout the world in areas that are intensively managed for urban and agricultural uses. Changes in climate and management of increasingly limited water supplies may further impact water resources essential for sustaining habitats. In this report, we document adapting a Water Evaluation and Planning (WEAP) system model for the Central Valley of California. We demonstrate using this adapted model (WEAP-CVwh) to evaluate impacts produced from plausible future scenarios on agricultural and wetland habitats used by waterbirds and other wildlife. Processed output from WEAP-CVwh indicated varying levels of impact caused by projected climate, urbanization, and water supply management in scenarios used to exemplify this approach. Among scenarios, the NCAR-CCSM3 A2 climate projection had a greater impact than the CNRM-CM3 B1 climate projection, whereas expansive urbanization had a greater impact than strategic urbanization, on annual availability of waterbird habitat. Scenarios including extensive rice-idling or substantial instream flow requirements on important water supply sources produced large impacts on annual availability of waterbird habitat. In the year corresponding with the greatest habitat reduction for each scenario, the scenario including instream flow requirements resulted in the greatest decrease in habitats throughout all months of the wintering period relative to other scenarios. This approach provides a new and useful tool for habitat conservation planning in the Central Valley and a model to guide similar research investigations aiming to inform conservation, management, and restoration of important wildlife habitats.
This Habitat Evaluation Procedure (HEP) study was performed to determine baseline habitat units on the Oxbow Conservation Area in Grant County, Oregon. The evaluation is a required part of the Memorandum of Agreement between the Confederated Tribes of the Warm Springs and Bonneville Power Administration (BPA) relating to the acquisition and management of the Oxbow Conservation Area. The HEP team was comprised of individuals from the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife and the Confederated Tribes of the Warm Springs Reservation of Oregon. The survey was conducted using the following HEP evaluation models for key species: black-capped chickadee (Poecile atricapilla), mallard (Anas platyrhynchos), mink (Mustela vison), western meadowlark (Sturnella neglecta), white-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginiana), and yellow warbler (Dendroica petechia). Cover types used in this survey were conifer forest, irrigated meadow, riparian meadow, upland meadow, riparian shrub, upland shrub, and mine tailings. The project generated 701.3 habitat units for mitigation crediting purposes. Results for each HEP species are: (1) Black-capped chickadee habitat was good, with only isolated areas lacking snags or having low tree canopy cover. (2) Mallard habitat was poor in upland meadows and marginal elsewhere due to a lack of herbaceous/shrub cover and low herbaceous height. (3) Mink habitat was good, limited only by the lack of the shrub component. (4) Western meadowlark habitat was marginal in upland meadow and mine tailing cover types and good in irrigated meadow. Percent cover of grass and height of herbaceous variables were limiting factors. (5) White-tailed deer habitat was marginal due to relatively low tree canopy cover, reduced shrub cover, and limited browse diversity. (6) Yellow Warbler habitat was marginal due to less than optimum shrub height and the lack of hydrophytic shrubs. General ratings (poor, marginal, etc.) are described in the introduction section.
Stephen N. Matthews; Louis R. Iverson; Anantha M. Prasad; Matthew P. Peters
Mounting evidence shows that organisms have already begun to respond to global climate change. Advances in our knowledge of how climate shapes species distributional patterns has helped us better understand the response of birds to climate change. However, the distribution of birds across the landscape is also driven by biotic and abiotic components, including habitat...
Schweizer, Manuel; Ayé, Raffael; Kashkarov, Roman; Roth, Tobias
Although phylogenetic diversity has been suggested to be relevant from a conservation point of view, its role is still limited in applied nature conservation. Recently, the practice of investing conservation resources based on threatened species was identified as a reason for the slow integration of phylogenetic diversity in nature conservation planning. One of the main arguments is based on the observation that threatened species are not evenly distributed over the phylogenetic tree. However this argument seems to dismiss the fact that conservation action is a spatially explicit process, and even if threatened species are not evenly distributed over the phylogenetic tree, the occurrence of threatened species could still indicate areas with above average phylogenetic diversity and consequently could protect phylogenetic diversity. Here we aim to study the selection of important bird areas in Central Asia, which were nominated largely based on the presence of threatened bird species. We show that although threatened species occurring in Central Asia do not capture phylogenetically more distinct species than expected by chance, the current spatially explicit conservation approach of selecting important bird areas covers above average taxonomic and phylogenetic diversity of breeding and wintering birds. We conclude that the spatially explicit processes of conservation actions need to be considered in the current discussion of whether new prioritization methods are needed to complement conservation action based on threatened species. PMID:25337861
Full Text Available Although phylogenetic diversity has been suggested to be relevant from a conservation point of view, its role is still limited in applied nature conservation. Recently, the practice of investing conservation resources based on threatened species was identified as a reason for the slow integration of phylogenetic diversity in nature conservation planning. One of the main arguments is based on the observation that threatened species are not evenly distributed over the phylogenetic tree. However this argument seems to dismiss the fact that conservation action is a spatially explicit process, and even if threatened species are not evenly distributed over the phylogenetic tree, the occurrence of threatened species could still indicate areas with above average phylogenetic diversity and consequently could protect phylogenetic diversity. Here we aim to study the selection of important bird areas in Central Asia, which were nominated largely based on the presence of threatened bird species. We show that although threatened species occurring in Central Asia do not capture phylogenetically more distinct species than expected by chance, the current spatially explicit conservation approach of selecting important bird areas covers above average taxonomic and phylogenetic diversity of breeding and wintering birds. We conclude that the spatially explicit processes of conservation actions need to be considered in the current discussion of whether new prioritization methods are needed to complement conservation action based on threatened species.
Sajjad, Muhammad; Li, Yangfan; Tang, Zhenghong; Cao, Ling; Liu, Xiaoping
Worldwide, humans are facing high risks from natural hazards, especially in coastal regions with high population densities. Rising sea levels due to global warming are making coastal communities' infrastructure vulnerable to natural disasters. The present study aims to provide a coupling approach of vulnerability and resilience through restoration and conservation of lost or degraded coastal natural habitats to reclamation under different climate change scenarios. The integrated valuation of ecosystems and tradeoffs model is used to assess the current and future vulnerability of coastal communities. The model employed is based on seven different biogeophysical variables to calculate a natural hazard index and to highlight the criticality of the restoration of natural habitats. The results show that roughly 25% of the coastline and more than 5 million residents are in highly vulnerable coastal areas of mainland China, and these numbers are expected to double by 2100. Our study suggests that restoration and conservation in recently reclaimed areas have the potential to reduce this vulnerability by 45%. Hence, natural habitats have proved to be a great defense against coastal hazards and should be prioritized in coastal planning and development. The findings confirm that natural habitats are critical for coastal resilience and can act as a recovery force of coastal functionality loss. Therefore, we recommend that the Chinese government prioritizes restoration (where possible) and conservation of the remaining habitats for the sake of coastal resilience to prevent natural hazards from escalating into disasters.
Full Text Available Studies were carried out in 2010 by mean of simplified version of the mapping method. The study area (395 ha was located close to the city centre. It comprised a mosaic of urbanized habitats, with a clear dominance of green areas, such as parks (41.1 ha, gardens, cemeteries and tree clumps. A total of 48 breeding bird species were recorded in the whole study area. The most common (<25 pairs/100 ha were Passer domesticus, Passer montanus, Sturnus vulgaris, Parus caeruleus, Parus major, Apus apus and Columba livia. Numerous (7-15 pairs/100 ha were also the following species: Columba palumbus, Turdus pilaris, Sylvia atricapilla, Serinus serinus, Turdus merula and Pica pica. Insectivorous birds were the most common birds constituting 63.3%, and granivorous -32.6% of all pairs recorded. Most birds nested in tree holes (39.3%, in/on buildings (30.2% and in trees/shrubs (25.6%. Distribution of breeding pairs of 23 bird species was presented on maps. Population trends for 17 species were documented. Rapid increase in numbers of Turdus pilaris, Corvus cornix and Phoenicurus phoenicurus and decrease of Pica pica were recorded.
Tantipisanuh, Naruemon; Gale, George A; Pollino, Carmel
Bayesian networks (BN) have been increasingly used for habitat suitability modeling of threatened species due to their potential to construct robust models with limited survey data. However, previous applications of this approach have only occurred in countries where human and budget resources are highly available, but the highest concentrations of threatened vertebrates globally are located in the tropics where resources are much more limited. We assessed the effectiveness of Bayesian networks in generating habitat suitability models in Thailand, a biodiversity-rich country where the knowledge base is typically sparse for a wide range of threatened species. The Bayesian network approach was used to generate habitat suitability maps for 52 threatened vertebrate species in Thailand, using a range of evidence types, from relatively well-documented species with good local knowledge to poorly documented species, with few local experts. Published information and expert knowledge were used to define habitat requirements. Focal species were categorized into 22 groups based on known habitat preferences, and then habitat suitability models were constructed with outcomes represented spatially. Models had a consistent structure with three major components: potential habitat, known range, and threat level. Model classification sensitivity was tested using presence-only field data for 21 species. Habitat models for 12 species were relatively sensitive (>70% congruency between observed and predicted locations), three were moderately congruent, and six were poor. Classification sensitivity tended to be high for bird models and moderate for mammals, whereas sensitivity for reptiles was low, presumably reflecting the relatively poor knowledge base for reptiles in the region. Bayesian network models show significant potential for biodiversity-rich regions with scarce resources, although they require further refinement and testing. It is possible that one detailed ecological study is
Shi, Hua; Singh, Ashbindu; Kant, S.; Zhu, Zhiliang; Waller, E.
Priority setting is an essential component of biodiversity conservation. Existing methods to identify priority areas for conservation have focused almost entirely on biological factors. We suggest a new relative ranking method for identifying priority conservation areas that integrates both biological and social aspects. It is based on the following criteria: the habitat's status, human population pressure, human efforts to protect habitat, and number of endemic plant and vertebrate species. We used this method to rank 25 hotspots, 17 megadiverse countries, and the hotspots within each megadiverse country. We used consistent, comprehensive, georeferenced, and multiband data sets and analytical remote sensing and geographic information system tools to quantify habitat status, human population pressure, and protection status. The ranking suggests that the Philippines, Atlantic Forest, Mediterranean Basin, Caribbean Islands, Caucasus, and Indo-Burma are the hottest hotspots and that China, the Philippines, and India are the hottest megadiverse countries. The great variation in terms of habitat, protected areas, and population pressure among the hotspots, the megadiverse countries, and the hotspots within the same country suggests the need for hotspot- and country-specific conservation policies.
...] Proposed Low-Effect Habitat Conservation Plan for the California Tiger Salamander, AT&T Portable Generator... Federally listed animal, the California tiger salamander. The applicant would implement a conservation... permanently convert 1.24 acres of upland grassland habitat for the California tiger salamander into a new...
Meller, Laura; Thuiller, Wilfried; Pironon, Samuel; Barbet-Massin, Morgane; Hof, Andries; Cabeza, Mar
Both climate change and habitat modification exert serious pressure on biodiversity. Although climate change mitigation has been identified as an important strategy for biodiversity conservation, bioenergy remains a controversial mitigation action due to its potential negative ecological and
Richard E. Feldman; Pam G. Krannitz
The Garry oak (Quercus garryana) ecosystem was once a dominant habitat type on southeastern Vancouver Island, British Columbia, but urbanization has lead to massive habitat loss and fragmentation (Hebda 1993). Most bird species are expected to respond negatively to urbanization because of increased patch isolation, increased predation pressure, and negative edge...
Since 1998, Audubon's Christmas Bird Count (CBC) has been supported by an Internet-based data entry application that was initially designed to accommodate the traditional paper-based methods of this long-running bird monitoring program. The first efforts to computerize the data and the entry procedures have informed a planned strategy to revise the current...
Lauria, V; Gristina, M; Attrill, M J; Fiorentino, F; Garofalo, G
Commercial fisheries have dramatically impacted elasmobranch populations worldwide. With high capture and bycatch rates, the abundance of many species is rapidly declining and around a quarter of the world's sharks and rays are threatened with extinction. At a regional scale this negative trend has also been evidenced in the central Mediterranean Sea, where bottom-trawl fisheries have affected the biomass of certain rays (e.g. Raja clavata) and sharks (e.g. Mustelus spp.). Detailed knowledge of elasmobranch habitat requirements is essential for biodiversity conservation and fisheries management, but this is often hampered by a poor understanding of their spatial ecology. Habitat suitability models were used to investigate the habitat preference of nine elasmobranch species and their overall diversity (number of species) in relation to five environmental predictors (i.e. depth, sea surface temperature, surface salinity, slope and rugosity) in the central Mediterranean Sea. Results showed that depth, seafloor morphology and sea surface temperature were the main drivers for elasmobranch habitat suitability. Predictive distribution maps revealed different species-specific patterns of suitable habitat while high assemblage diversity was predicted in deeper offshore waters (400-800 m depth). This study helps to identify priority conservation areas and diversity hot-spots for rare and endangered elasmobranchs in the Mediterranean Sea.
Erin E Poor
Full Text Available Terrestrial long-distance migrations are declining globally: in North America, nearly 75% have been lost. Yet there has been limited research comparing habitat suitability and connectivity models to identify migration corridors across increasingly fragmented landscapes. Here we use pronghorn (Antilocapra americana migrations in prairie habitat to compare two types of models that identify habitat suitability: maximum entropy (Maxent and expert-based (Analytic Hierarchy Process. We used distance to wells, distance to water, NDVI, land cover, distance to roads, terrain shape and fence presence to parameterize the models. We then used the output of these models as cost surfaces to compare two common connectivity models, least-cost modeling (LCM and circuit theory. Using pronghorn movement data from spring and fall migrations, we identified potential migration corridors by combining each habitat suitability model with each connectivity model. The best performing model combination was Maxent with LCM corridors across both seasons. Maxent out-performed expert-based habitat suitability models for both spring and fall migrations. However, expert-based corridors can perform relatively well and are a cost-effective alternative if species location data are unavailable. Corridors created using LCM out-performed circuit theory, as measured by the number of pronghorn GPS locations present within the corridors. We suggest the use of a tiered approach using different corridor widths for prioritizing conservation and mitigation actions, such as fence removal or conservation easements.
Poor, Erin E; Loucks, Colby; Jakes, Andrew; Urban, Dean L
Terrestrial long-distance migrations are declining globally: in North America, nearly 75% have been lost. Yet there has been limited research comparing habitat suitability and connectivity models to identify migration corridors across increasingly fragmented landscapes. Here we use pronghorn (Antilocapra americana) migrations in prairie habitat to compare two types of models that identify habitat suitability: maximum entropy (Maxent) and expert-based (Analytic Hierarchy Process). We used distance to wells, distance to water, NDVI, land cover, distance to roads, terrain shape and fence presence to parameterize the models. We then used the output of these models as cost surfaces to compare two common connectivity models, least-cost modeling (LCM) and circuit theory. Using pronghorn movement data from spring and fall migrations, we identified potential migration corridors by combining each habitat suitability model with each connectivity model. The best performing model combination was Maxent with LCM corridors across both seasons. Maxent out-performed expert-based habitat suitability models for both spring and fall migrations. However, expert-based corridors can perform relatively well and are a cost-effective alternative if species location data are unavailable. Corridors created using LCM out-performed circuit theory, as measured by the number of pronghorn GPS locations present within the corridors. We suggest the use of a tiered approach using different corridor widths for prioritizing conservation and mitigation actions, such as fence removal or conservation easements.
Smith, Gregory J.
The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) Bird Banding Laboratory (BBL) was established in 1920 after ratification of the Migratory Bird Treaty Act with the United Kingdom in 1918. During World War II, the BBL was moved from Washington, D.C., to what is now the USGS Patuxent Wildlife Research Center (PWRC). The BBL issues permits and bands to permittees to band birds, records bird band recoveries or encounters primarily through telephone and Internet reporting, and manages more than 72 million banding records and more than 4.5 million records of encounters using state-of-the-art technologies. Moreover, the BBL also issues bands and manages banding and encounter data for the Canadian Bird Banding Office (BBO). Each year approximately 1 million bands are shipped from the BBL to banders in the United States and Canada, and nearly 100,000 encounter reports are entered into the BBL systems. Banding data are essential for regulatory programs, especially migratory waterfowl harvest regulations. The USGS BBL works closely with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) to develop regulations for the capture, handling, banding, and marking of birds. These regulations are published in the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR). In 2006, the BBL and the USFWS Division of Migratory Bird Management (DMBM) began a comprehensive revision of the banding regulations. The bird banding community has three major constituencies: Federal and State agency personnel involved in the management and conservation of bird populations that include the Flyway Councils, ornithological research scientists, and avocational banders. With increased demand for banding activities and relatively constant funding, a Federal Advisory Committee (Committee) was chartered and reviewed the BBL program in 2005. The final report of the Committee included six major goals and 58 specific recommendations, 47 of which have been addressed by the BBL. Specifically, the Committee recommended the BBL continue to support science
Barletta, M; Jaureguizar, A J; Baigun, C; Fontoura, N F; Agostinho, A A; Almeida-Val, V M F; Val, A L; Torres, R A; Jimenes-Segura, L F; Giarrizzo, T; Fabré, N N; Batista, V S; Lasso, C; Taphorn, D C; Costa, M F; Chaves, P T; Vieira, J P; Corrêa, M F M
Fish conservation in South America is a pressing issue. The biodiversity of fishes, just as with all other groups of plants and animals, is far from fully known. Continuing habitat loss may result in biodiversity losses before full species diversity is known. In this review, the main river basins of South America (Magdalena, Orinoco, Amazon and Paraná-La Plata system), together with key aquatic habitats (mangrove-fringed estuaries of the tropical humid, tropical semi-arid and subtropical regions) are analysed in terms of their characteristics and main concerns. Habitat loss was the main concern identified for all South American ecosystems. It may be caused by damming of rivers, deforestation, water pollution, mining, poor agricultural practice or inadequate management practice. Habitat loss has a direct consequence, which is a decrease in the availability of living resources, a serious social and economic issue, especially for South American nations which are all developing countries. The introduction of exotic species and overfishing were also identified as widespread across the continent and its main freshwater, coastal and marine ecosystems. Finally, suggestions are made to find ways to overcome these problems. The main suggestion is a change of paradigm and a new design for conservation actions, starting with integrated research and aiming at the co-ordinated and harmonized management of the main transboundary waters of the continent. The actions would be focused on habitat conservation and social rescue of the less well-off populations of indigenous and non-indigenous peoples. Energy and freshwater demands will also have to be rescaled in order to control habitat loss.
KALYA SUBASINGHE; AMILA P. SUMANAPALA
Subasinghe K, Sumanapala AP. 2014. Biological and functional diversity of bird communities in natural and human modified habitats in Northern Flank of Knuckles Mountain Forest Range, Sri Lanka. Biodiversitas 15: 200-205. The Knuckles Mountain Forest Range (KMFR) has a complex mosaic of natural and human modified habitats and the contribution of these habitats to the biological and functional diversities has not been deeply studied. Present study investigated both of these diversities in five ...
Cooper, A; McCann, T; Meharg, M J
A habitat monitoring programme, the Northern Ireland Countryside Survey, carried out by the University of Ulster for the Department of the Environment for Northern Ireland, is described. It was based on a random sample of quarter kilometer grid squares, stratified by multivariate land classification. Estimates of change in habitat area between 1987-1992 and 1998 are presented and used to assess policy-related priorities for biodiversity conservation action in widespread habitats in Northern Ireland (NI). The basis of the assessment is Broad Habitats, a classification developed as part of the United Kingdom (UK) Biodiversity Action Plan. Improved Grassland, Neutral Grassland and Bog Broad Habitats occupy the largest area of NI, which holds a large proportion of the UK Neutral Grassland and Fen Marsh and Swamp Broad Habitat resource. The greatest net area increases with time were in Improved Grassland (33%), Coniferous Woodland (12%) and Broadleaved, Mixed and Yew Woodland (9%). The greatest net area decreases were in Neutral Grassland (-32%), Arable and Horticulture (-25%), Fen, Marsh and Swamp (-19%), Bog (-8%) and Calcareous Grassland (-7%). These changes are a function of agriculture, public and private forestry, building construction and peat cutting for fuel. The Key biodiversity issue is seminatural Broad Habitat loss, in particular, Neutral Grassland and Fen, Marsh and Swamp, highlighting the lack of effective action for protecting biodiversity in the countryside as a whole. The extent to which current land use is shown to be driving change, indicates that biodiversity conservation action through implementing landscape-scale agri-environment measures could deliver major biodiversity gains. The reliable information on recent changes, provided by the Northern Ireland Countryside Survey, has been used to guide conservation planning. Future re-survey will allow the effectiveness of the conservation strategy as it applies to the countryside as a whole, to be
Stevens, Patricia; Walters, Katie D.
Some of the biggest challenges facing wildlife today are changes to their environment from both natural and anthropogenic causes. Natural resource managers, planners, policy makers, industry and private landowners must make informed decisions and policies regarding management, conservation, and restoration of species, habitats, and ecosystem function in response to these changes. Specific needs include (1) a better understanding of population status and trends; (2) understanding of species’ habitat needs and roles in supporting ecosystem functions; (3) the ability to assess species’ responses to environmental changes and predict future responses; and (4) the development of innovative techniques and tools to better understand, minimize or prevent any unintended consequences of environmental change.
McManamay, Ryan A. [ORNL; Griffiths, Natalie A. [ORNL; DeRolph, Christopher R. [ORNL; Pracheil, Brenda M. [ORNL
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.
Ayup, M. M.; Montti, L.; Aragón, R.; Grau, H. R.
Ligustrum lucidum is the major exotic tree in NW Argentina montane forests (Yungas). To assess the effects of its expanding invasion on avian communities we (1) measured different habitat properties (vertical forest structure and composition, vegetation cover, light availability, air temperature, air relative humidity and soil litter depth), (2) compared bird species composition and diversity in Ligustrum-dominated and native-dominated secondary forests and (3) analyzed seasonal patterns and changes in these variables between forest types. The study was conducted during 2010-2011 wet and dry seasons, at two altitudinal zones: 500-800 and 1100-1450 masl. Compared with native forests, Ligustrum dominated forests had a more homogeneous vertical forest structure and denser canopy cover (resulting in lower understory solar radiation), significantly lower understory cover and lower litter depth. Air temperature and relative humidity did not differ between forests in either season. Solar radiation was higher in the dry season in both forest types, but litter depth showed opposite patterns between seasons depending on forest type. We recorded 59 bird species in 21 families. Bird species abundance, richness and diversity indexes were significantly lower in Ligustrum-dominated relative to native forests of similar successional age, which had almost twice as many species as the former. Avian communities differed between altitudinal zones, but the difference was stronger between Ligustrum and native-dominated forests. Avian community composition was less variable in time and space in native forests than in Ligustrum-dominated ones. Our results suggest that L. lucidum invasion generates structurally homogeneous and simpler forests that represent a less suitable habitat for a diverse avifauna. This illustrates the wide ecological changes (from habitat properties and ecosystem functioning to vertebrate community composition) that the subtropical mountain forests of Argentina are
Verônica Souza da Mota Gomes
Full Text Available Restingas are considered stressful habitats associated with the Brazilian Atlantic forest, and their ecological interactions are poorly known. The goal of the present study was to determine the potential role of frugivorous birds as seed dispersers in a restinga habitat. Data were collected in Parque Nacional da Restinga de Jurubatiba, southeastern Brazil, where the main physiognomy (Open Clusia Formation is characterized by the presence of patches of vegetation covering 20 to 48 % of the sandy soil and reaching a height of 5 m. Birds were captured with mist nets (12 x 2.5 m; 36 mm mesh; 1 680 net-hrs and had their fecal and regurgitate samples inspected for seeds. Six plant species found in these bird samples were studied. The germination of seeds obtained from plants was compared to those from the birds. Both groups of seeds were set on Petri dishes at room temperature and washed when infected with fungi. In general, there was no effect on germination rate, and the effect on germination speed was negative. Germination of seeds from Pilosocereus arrabidae treated by the birds seemed to be influenced by storage of defecated seeds, while few Miconia cinnamomifolia seeds both from plants and from birds germinated. Ocotea notata presented a great variation in time to the onset of germination, perhaps an advantage against dissecation. Aechmea nudicaulis, Clusia hilariana and Erythroxylum subsessile probably take advantage of the arrival to favorable microhabitats, not by the gut effect on the seeds. All plant species studied are numerically important for the community and some of them are main actors in the succession of vegetation patches. Among the birds, Mimus gilvus is an important resident species, endemic to restingas in Brazil, while Turdus amaurochalinus is a visitor and may be important for plants that fructify during its passage by the study site. Although the effect of pulp removal was only tested for one species (Achmea nudicaulis in the
Veríssimo, Diogo; Pongiluppi, Tatiana; Santos, Maria Cintia M; Develey, Pedro F; Fraser, Iain; Smith, Robert J; MacMilan, Douglas C
Conservation marketing campaigns that focus on flagship species play a vital role in biological diversity conservation because they raise funds and change people's behavior. However, most flagship species are selected without considering the target audience of the campaign, which can hamper the campaign's effectiveness. To address this problem, we used a systematic and stakeholder-driven approach to select flagship species for a conservation campaign in the Serra do Urubu in northeastern Brazil. We based our techniques on environmental economic and marketing methods. We used choice experiments to examine the species attributes that drive preference and latent-class models to segment respondents into groups by preferences and socioeconomic characteristics. We used respondent preferences and information on bird species inhabiting the Serra do Urubu to calculate a flagship species suitability score. We also asked respondents to indicate their favorite species from a set list to enable comparison between methods. The species' traits that drove audience preference were geographic distribution, population size, visibility, attractiveness, and survival in captivity. However, the importance of these factors differed among groups and groups differed in their views on whether species with small populations and the ability to survive in captivity should be prioritized. The popularity rankings of species differed between approaches, a result that was probably related to the different ways in which the 2 methods measured preference. Our new approach is a transparent and evidence-based method that can be used to refine the way stakeholders are engaged in the design of conservation marketing campaigns. © 2013 Society for Conservation Biology.
Holland, John M; Bianchi, Felix Jja; Entling, Martin H; Moonen, Anna-Camilla; Smith, Barbara M; Jeanneret, Philippe
Different semi-natural habitats occur on farmland, and it is the vegetation's traits and structure that subsequently determine their ability to support natural enemies and their associated contribution to conservation biocontrol. New habitats can be created and existing ones improved with agri-environment scheme funding in all EU member states. Understanding the contribution of each habitat type can aid the development of conservation control strategies. Here we review the extent to which the predominant habitat types in Europe support natural enemies, whether this results in enhanced natural enemy densities in the adjacent crop and whether this leads to reduced pest densities. Considerable variation exists in the available information for the different habitat types and trophic levels. Natural enemies within each habitat were the most studied, with less information on whether they were enhanced in adjacent fields, while their impact on pests was rarely investigated. Most information was available for woody and herbaceous linear habitats, yet not for woodland which can be the most common semi-natural habitat in many regions. While the management and design of habitats offer potential to stimulate conservation biocontrol, we also identified knowledge gaps. A better understanding of the relationship between resource availability and arthropod communities across habitat types, the spatiotemporal distribution of resources in the landscape and interactions with other factors that play a role in pest regulation could contribute to an informed management of semi-natural habitats for biocontrol. © 2016 Society of Chemical Industry. © 2016 Society of Chemical Industry.
Barelli, Claudia; Albanese, Davide; Donati, Claudio; Pindo, Massimo; Dallago, Chiara; Rovero, Francesco; Cavalieri, Duccio; Tuohy, Kieran Michael; Hauffe, Heidi Christine; De Filippo, Carlotta
The expansion of agriculture is shrinking pristine forest areas worldwide, jeopardizing the persistence of their wild inhabitants. The Udzungwa red colobus monkey (Procolobus gordonorum) is among the most threatened primate species in Africa. Primarily arboreal and highly sensitive to hunting and habitat destruction, they provide a critical model to understanding whether anthropogenic disturbance impacts gut microbiota diversity. We sampled seven social groups inhabiting two forests (disturbed vs. undisturbed) in the Udzungwa Mountains of Tanzania. While Ruminococcaceae and Lachnospiraceae dominated in all individuals, reflecting their role in extracting energy from folivorous diets, analysis of genus composition showed a marked diversification across habitats, with gut microbiota α-diversity significantly higher in the undisturbed forest. Functional analysis suggests that such variation may be associated with food plant diversity in natural versus human-modified habitats, requiring metabolic pathways to digest xenobiotics. Thus, the effects of changes in gut microbiota should not be ignored to conserve endangered populations.
Bieri, Joanna A.; Sample, Christine; Thogmartin, Wayne E.; Diffendorfer, James E.; Earl, Julia E.; Erickson, Richard A.; Federico, Paula; Flockhart, D. T. Tyler; Nicol, Sam; Semmens, Darius J.; Skraber, T.; Wiederholt, Ruscena; Mattsson, Brady J.
Many metrics exist for quantifying the relative value of habitats and pathways used by highly mobile species. Properly selecting and applying such metrics requires substantial background in mathematics and understanding the relevant management arena. To address this multidimensional challenge, we demonstrate and compare three measurements of habitat quality: graph-, occupancy-, and demographic-based metrics. Each metric provides insights into system dynamics, at the expense of increasing amounts and complexity of data and models. Our descriptions and comparisons of diverse habitat-quality metrics provide means for practitioners to overcome the modeling challenges associated with management or conservation of such highly mobile species. Whereas previous guidance for applying habitat-quality metrics has been scattered in diversified tracks of literature, we have brought this information together into an approachable format including accessible descriptions and a modeling case study for a typical example that conservation professionals can adapt for their own decision contexts and focal populations.Considerations for Resource ManagersManagement objectives, proposed actions, data availability and quality, and model assumptions are all relevant considerations when applying and interpreting habitat-quality metrics.Graph-based metrics answer questions related to habitat centrality and connectivity, are suitable for populations with any movement pattern, quantify basic spatial and temporal patterns of occupancy and movement, and require the least data.Occupancy-based metrics answer questions about likelihood of persistence or colonization, are suitable for populations that undergo localized extinctions, quantify spatial and temporal patterns of occupancy and movement, and require a moderate amount of data.Demographic-based metrics answer questions about relative or absolute population size, are suitable for populations with any movement pattern, quantify demographic
... Wing, 11th Floor, 70 West Hedding Street, San Jose, CA 95110. You may also submit comments by facsimile... Fernando Street, San Jose, CA 95112. 3. Gilroy Library. 7387 Rosanna Street, Gilroy, CA 95020. 4. Morgan... limited to capture, harm, and harassment of burrowing owls as a result of implementing the conservation...
... patterns, including breeding, feeding, and sheltering (50 CFR 17.3(c)). NMFS defines ``harm'' to include... impairing essential behavioral patterns, including breeding, spawning, rearing, migrating, feeding, or... conservation strategy includes measures that will be implemented outside of the statutory Delta to complement...
Full Text Available Behavioural flexibility is thought to be a major factor in evolution. It may facilitate the discovery and exploitation of new resources, which in turn may expose populations to novel selective forces and facilitate adaptive radiation. Darwin's finches are a textbook example of adaptive radiation. They are fast learners and show a range of unusual foraging techniques, probably as a result of their flexibility. In this study we aimed to test whether variability of the environment is correlated with flexibility. We compared woodpecker finches from a dry area (hereafter, Arid Zone, where food availability is variable, with individuals from a cloud forest (hereafter, Scalesia zone where food abundance is stable. As parameters for flexibility, we measured neophilia and neophobia, which are two aspects of reaction to novelty, reversal learning and problem-solving. We found no differences in performance on a problem-solving task but, in line with our prediction, individuals from the Arid Zone were significantly faster reversal learners and more neophilic than their conspecifics from the Scalesia zone. The latter result supports the notion that environmental variability drives flexibility. In contrast to our prediction, Arid Zone birds were even more neophobic than birds from the Scalesia Zone. The latter result could be the consequence of differences in predation pressure between the two vegetation zones.
Norris, D Ryan; Flockhart, D T Tyler; Strickland, Dan
A comprehensive understanding of how natural and anthropogenic variation in habitat influences populations requires long-term information on how such variation affects survival and dispersal throughout the annual cycle. Gray jays Perisoreus canadensis are widespread boreal resident passerines that use cached food to survive over the winter and to begin breeding during the late winter. Using multistate capture-recapture analysis, we examined apparent survival and dispersal in relation to habitat quality in a gray jay population over 34 years (1977-2010). Prior evidence suggests that natural variation in habitat quality is driven by the proportion of conifers on territories because of their superior ability to preserve cached food. Although neither adults (>1 year) nor juveniles (preference ecological trap for birds. Reproductive success, as shown in a previous study, but not survival, is sensitive to natural variation in habitat quality, suggesting that gray jays, despite living in harsh winter conditions, likely favor the allocation of limited resources towards self-maintenance over reproduction.
The butterfly fauna of the high-altitude desert of Northern Chile, though depauperate, shows high endemism, is poorly known and is of considerable conservation concern. This study surveys butterflies along the Andean slope between 2400 and 5000 m asl (prepuna, puna and Andean steppe habitats) as well as in high and low-altitude wetlands and in the neoriparian vegetation of agricultural sites. We also include historical sightings from museum records. We compare abundances between altitudes, between natural and impacted sites, as well as between two sampling years with different precipitation regimes. The results confirm high altitudinal turnover and show greatest similarity between wetland and slope faunas at similar altitudes. Results also underscore vulnerability to weather fluctuations, particularly in the more arid low-altitude sites, where abundances were much lower in the low precipitation sampling season and several species were not observed at all. Finally, we show that some species have shifted to the neoriparian vegetation of the agricultural landscape, whereas others were only observed in less impacted habitats dominated by native plants. These results suggest that acclimation to novel habitats depends on larval host plant use. The traditional agricultural environment can provide habitat for many, but not all, native butterfly species, but an estimation of the value of these habitats requires better understanding of butterfly life history strategies and relationships with host plants.
Full Text Available The butterfly fauna of the high-altitude desert of Northern Chile, though depauperate, shows high endemism, is poorly known and is of considerable conservation concern. This study surveys butterflies along the Andean slope between 2400 and 500 m asl (prepuna, puna and Andean steppe habitats as well as in high and low altitude wetlands and in the neoriparian vegetation of agricultural sites. We also include historical sightings from museum records. We compare abundances between altitudes, between natural and impacted sites, as well as between two sampling years with different precipitation regimes. The results confirm high altitudinal turnover and show greatest similarity between wetland and slope faunas at similar altitudes. Results also underscore vulnerability to weather fluctuations, particularly in the more arid low-altitude sites, where abundances were much lower in the low precipitation sampling season and several species were not observed at all. Finally, we show that some species have shifted to the neoriparian vegetation of the agricultural landscape, whereas others were only observed in less impacted habitats dominated by native plants. These results suggest that acclimation to novel habitats depends on larval host plant use. The traditional agricultural environment can provide habitat for many, but not all, native butterfly species, but an estimation of the value of these habitats requires better understanding of butterfly life-history strategies and relationships with host plants.
DAVE CURRIE; JOSEPH M. WUNDERLE JR.; DAVID N. EWERT; MATTHEW R. ANDERSON; ANCILLENO DAVIS; JASMINE TURNER
We studied winter avian distribution in three representative pine-dominated habitats and three broadleaf habitats in an area recently designated as a National Park on Andros Island, The Bahamas, 1-23 February 2002. During 180 five-minute point counts, 1731 individuals were detected (1427 permanent residents and 304 winter residents) representing 51 species (29...
Endemic species are most closely dependent on continuous forest cover. However, some montane species did not show any clear habitat associations and thus can be viewed as local habitat generalists. This study shows that many restricted-range species (including endangered endemics) are able to live in fragmented ...
Webb, Matthew H; Terauds, Aleks; Tulloch, Ayesha; Bell, Phil; Stojanovic, Dejan; Heinsohn, Robert
The distribution of mobile species in dynamic systems can vary greatly over time and space. Estimating their population size and geographic range can be problematic and affect the accuracy of conservation assessments. Scarce data on mobile species and the resources they need can also limit the type of analytical approaches available to derive such estimates. We quantified change in availability and use of key ecological resources required for breeding for a critically endangered nomadic habitat specialist, the Swift Parrot (Lathamus discolor). We compared estimates of occupied habitat derived from dynamic presence-background (i.e., presence-only data) climatic models with estimates derived from dynamic occupancy models that included a direct measure of food availability. We then compared estimates that incorporate fine-resolution spatial data on the availability of key ecological resources (i.e., functional habitats) with more common approaches that focus on broader climatic suitability or vegetation cover (due to the absence of fine-resolution data). The occupancy models produced significantly (P < 0.001) smaller (up to an order of magnitude) and more spatially discrete estimates of the total occupied area than climate-based models. The spatial location and extent of the total area occupied with the occupancy models was highly variable between years (131 and 1498 km 2 ). Estimates accounting for the area of functional habitats were significantly smaller (2-58% [SD 16]) than estimates based only on the total area occupied. An increase or decrease in the area of one functional habitat (foraging or nesting) did not necessarily correspond to an increase or decrease in the other. Thus, an increase in the extent of occupied area may not equate to improved habitat quality or function. We argue these patterns are typical for mobile resource specialists but often go unnoticed because of limited data over relevant spatial and temporal scales and lack of spatial data on the
Diehl, Robert Howard
The challenge for migratory bird conservation is habitat preservation that sustains breeding, migration, and non-breeding biological processes. In choosing an appropriately scaled conservation arena for habitat preservation, a conservative and thorough examination of stopover habitat use patterns by migrants works back from the larger scales at which such relationships may occur. Because the use of stopover habitats by migrating birds occurs at spatial scales larger than traditional field techniques can easily accommodate, I quantify these relationship using the United States system of weather surveillance radars (popularly known as NEXRAD). To provide perspective on use of this system for biologists, I first describe the technical challenges as well as some of the biological potential of these radars for ornithological research. Using data from these radars, I then examined the influence of Lake Michigan and the distribution of woodland habitat on migrant concentrations in northeastern Illinois habitats during stopover. Lake Michigan exerted less influence on migrant abundance and density than the distribution and availability of habitat for stopover. There was evidence of post-migratory movement resulting in habitats within suburban landscapes experiencing higher migrant abundance but lower migrant density than habitats within nearby urban and agricultural landscapes. Finally, in the context of hierarchy theory, I examined the influence of landscape ecological and behavioral processes on bird density during migratory stopover. Migrant abundance did not vary across landscapes that differed considerably in the amount of habitat available for stopover. As a result, smaller, more isolated patches held higher densities of birds. Spatial models of migrant habitat selection based on migrant proximity to a patch explained nearly as much variance in the number of migrants occupying patches (R2 = 0.88) as selection models based on migrant interception of patches during
... Flora (CITES). Under the WBCA, we, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, issue permits for import of... Fish and Wildlife Service Wild Bird Conservation Act; Receipt of Application for Approval of a Cooperative Breeding Program AGENCY: Fish and Wildlife Service, Interior. ACTION: Notice of receipt of...
Wessely, Johannes; Hülber, Karl; Gattringer, Andreas; Kuttner, Michael; Moser, Dietmar; Rabitsch, Wolfgang; Schindler, Stefan; Dullinger, Stefan; Essl, Franz
Anthropogenic habitat fragmentation represents a major obstacle to species shifting their range in response to climate change. Conservation measures to increase the (meta-)population capacity and permeability of landscapes may help but the effectiveness of such measures in a warming climate has rarely been evaluated. Here, we simulate range dynamics of 51 species from three taxonomic groups (vascular plants, butterflies and grasshoppers) in Central Europe as driven by twenty-first-century climate scenarios and analyse how three habitat-based conservation strategies (establishing corridors, improving the landscape matrix, and protected area management) modify species' projected range size changes. These simulations suggest that the conservation strategies considered are unable to save species from regional extinction. For those persisting, they reduce the magnitude of range loss in lowland but not in alpine species. Protected area management and corridor establishment are more effective than matrix improvement. However, none of the conservation strategies evaluated could fully compensate the negative impact of climate change for vascular plants, butterflies or grasshoppers in central Europe.
Casparus J. Crous
Full Text Available In South Africa, much of the forest biome is vulnerable to human-induced disturbance. The forest-dwelling butterfly Charaxes xiphares occidentalis is naturally confined to a small forest region in the south-western Cape, South Africa. Most of the remaining habitat of this species is within a fragmented agricultural matrix. Furthermore, this geographical area is also heavily invaded by alien plants, especially Acacia mearnsii. We investigated how C. x. occidentalis behaviourally responds to different habitat conditions in the landscape. We were particularly interested in touring, patrolling and settling behaviour as a conservation proxy for preference of a certain habitat configuration in this agricultural matrix. Remnant forest patches in the agricultural matrix showed fewer behavioural incidents than in a reference protected area. Moreover, dense stands of A. mearnsii negatively influenced the incidence and settling pattern of this butterfly across the landscape, with fewer tree settlings associated with more heavily invaded forest patches. This settling pattern was predominantly seen in female butterflies. We also identified specific trees that were settled upon for longer periods by C. x. occidentalis. Distance to a neighbouring patch and patch size influenced behavioural incidences, suggesting that further patch degradation and isolation could be detrimental to this butterfly. Conservation implications: We highlight the importance of clearing invasive tree species from vulnerable forest ecosystems and identify key tree species to consider in habitat conservation and rehabilitation programmes for this butterfly. We also suggest retaining as much intact natural forest as possible. This information should be integrated in local biodiversity management plans.
Casparus J. Crous
Full Text Available In South Africa, much of the forest biome is vulnerable to human-induced disturbance. The forest-dwelling butterfly Charaxes xiphares occidentalis is naturally confined to a small forest region in the south-western Cape, South Africa. Most of the remaining habitat of this species is within a fragmented agricultural matrix. Furthermore, this geographical area is also heavily invaded by alien plants, especially Acacia mearnsii. We investigated how C. x. occidentalis behaviourally responds to different habitat conditions in the landscape. We were particularly interested in touring, patrolling and settling behaviour as a conservation proxy for preference of a certain habitat configuration in this agricultural matrix. Remnant forest patches in the agricultural matrix showed fewer behavioural incidents than in a reference protected area. Moreover, dense stands of A. mearnsii negatively influenced the incidence and settling pattern of this butterfly across the landscape, with fewer tree settlings associated with more heavily invaded forest patches. This settling pattern was predominantly seen in female butterflies. We also identified specific trees that were settled upon for longer periods by C. x. occidentalis. Distance to a neighbouring patch and patch size influenced behavioural incidences, suggesting that further patch degradation and isolation could be detrimental to this butterfly. Conservation implications: We highlight the importance of clearing invasive tree species from vulnerable forest ecosystems and identify key tree species to consider in habitat conservation and rehabilitation programmes for this butterfly. We also suggest retaining as much intact natural forest as possible. This information should be integrated in local biodiversity management plans.
Poodat, Fatemeh; Arrowsmith, Colin; Fraser, David; Gordon, Ascelin
Connectivity among fragmented areas of habitat has long been acknowledged as important for the viability of biological conservation, especially within highly modified landscapes. Identifying important habitat patches in ecological connectivity is a priority for many conservation strategies, and the application of `graph theory' has been shown to provide useful information on connectivity. Despite the large number of metrics for connectivity derived from graph theory, only a small number have been compared in terms of the importance they assign to nodes in a network. This paper presents a study that aims to define a new set of metrics and compares these with traditional graph-based metrics, used in the prioritization of habitat patches for ecological connectivity. The metrics measured consist of "topological" metrics, "ecological metrics," and "integrated metrics," Integrated metrics are a combination of topological and ecological metrics. Eight metrics were applied to the habitat network for the fat-tailed dunnart within Greater Melbourne, Australia. A non-directional network was developed in which nodes were linked to adjacent nodes. These links were then weighted by the effective distance between patches. By applying each of the eight metrics for the study network, nodes were ranked according to their contribution to the overall network connectivity. The structured comparison revealed the similarity and differences in the way the habitat for the fat-tailed dunnart was ranked based on different classes of metrics. Due to the differences in the way the metrics operate, a suitable metric should be chosen that best meets the objectives established by the decision maker.
BURUNG DI PULAU NISAKAMBANGAN, CILACAP, JAWA TENGAH: KEANEKARAGAMAN, ADAPTASI DAN JENIS-JENIS PENTING UNTUK DILINDUNGI (Birds in Nusakambangan Island, Cilacap, Central Java: Diversity, Adaptation and Important Species for Conservation
Bambang Agus Suripto
necessary to have data on bird diversity as the base line data. The objectives of this research was to collect data on bird diversity, bird adaptation, the uniqueness of their habitat and determination of the most important species to be conserve in the Island. Data on birds diversity collected using direct observation method, was compared with other research results and analyzed descriptively. Birds adaptation was studied based on the number of habitat being inhibitant by certain species. The degree of each habitat uniqueness was studie using Jaccard’s Similarity Index. The species priority to be conserve was determine using selected parameter weighting. The results show that there are at least one hundred forty eight (148 species of birds belong to Subclass Neornithes, 15 ordo and 41 families. Most of them (101 are poorly adaptive, forty (40 species are moderately adaptive, and only seven (7 species are highly adaptive. Mangal forest is the most unique habitat because of the lowest similarity of bird species composition to anothers habitat which ranged from 1,8% to 16,9%. Five species are determined to be the most important species conserved: Hiearctus kienerii (Elang Perut Karat – score 15, Megalaima corvine (Takur Batutut – score 15, Megalaima javensis (Takur Tulung Tumpuk – score 14, Lophozosterops javanicus (Opior Jawa – score 14 dan Aethopyga mystacalis (Burung Madu Jawa – score 14.
...] Proposed Low-Effect Habitat Conservation Plan for the City of Santa Cruz Graham Hill Water Treatment Plant... lawful activities associated with the operation and maintenance of the existing Graham Hill Water... Graham Hill Water Treatment Plant. The Graham Hill Water Treatment Plant site contains habitat...
de Mello, Pietro L H; Machado, Ricardo B; Nogueira, Cristiano de C
Little is known about the threat levels and impacts of habitat loss over the Cerrado Squamate fauna. The region is under severe habitat loss due to mechanized agriculture, accelerated by changes in the Brazilian National Forest Code. The Squamate fauna of the Cerrado is rich in endemics and is intrinsically associated with its surrounding microhabitats, which make up a mosaic of phitophysiognomies throughout the region. Herein we evaluate current conservation status of Squamate biogeographic patterns in the Brazilian Cerrado, the single savanna among global biodiversity hotspots. To do so, we first updated point locality data on 49 endemic Squamates pertaining to seven non-random clusters of species ranges in the Cerrado. Each cluster was assumed to be representative of different biogeographic regions, holding its own set of species, herein mapped according to their extent of occurrence (EOO). We then contrasted these data in four different scenarios, according to the presence or absence of habitat loss and the presence or absence of the current protected area (PA) cover. We searched for non-random patterns of habitat loss and PA coverage among these biogeographic regions throughout the Cerrado. Finally, with the species EOO as biodiversity layers, we used Zonation to discuss contemporary PA distribution, as well as to highlight current priority areas for conservation within the Cerrado. We ran Zonation under all four conservation scenarios mentioned above. We observed that habitat loss and PA coverage significantly differed between biogeographic regions. The southernmost biogeographic region is the least protected and the most impacted, with priority areas highly scattered in small, disjunct fragments. The northernmost biogeographic region (Tocantins-Serra Geral) is the most protected and least impacted, showing extensive priority areas in all Zonation scenarios. Therefore, current and past deforestation trends are severely threatening biogeographic patterns in
Dan A. Roberts; Jimmie R. Parrish; Frank P. Howe
We present data on capture and recapture of neotropical migrants at constant-effort mist net sampling locations in Utah between 1994 and 2002. Data were collected in accordance with MAPS (Monitoring Avian Productivity and Survivorship) protocols. Since 1994, a total of 23,789 birds have been captured (i.e., total captures include new captures, recaptures, and unbanded...
Jane A. Fitzgerald; Jonathan Bart; Harold D. Brown; Kathy Lee
We used fixed-distance point counts to monitor bird populations from 1994-1998 in a rapidly urbanizing region of southwestern Missouri. Prior to the early 1990s, the rural landscape was a mosaic of forest, dolomite glades, and pasture but development proceeded rapidly in the 1990s with increased promotion of Branson, Missouri as a vacation and retirement destination....
Juan Manuel Diez Hernández
Full Text Available Fluvial conservation and restoration measures’ efficiency was evaluated in terms of ecological state enhancement, comparing future scenarios with historical or altered conditions. Ecohydraulics provides valuable scientific tools for the environmental diagnosis of lotic ecosystems, evaluating the combined effect of flow regime and channel structure on habitat quality for aquatic biota. This paper adopts an analytic-synthetic approach to the interdisciplinary challen-ge of fluvial ecohydraulics for computational fluid dynamics (CFD within the framework of ecosystem water mana-gement. The procedure for multidimensional (2D/3D evaluation of the physical aquatic habitat is described as well as its predictive ability and main applications. The 2D depth-averaged scheme is highlighted whose velocity simula-tion error (being normally lower than 10% overcomes classic one-dimensional (1D simplifications. The basic as-pects of biological habitat modelling, abiotic variables and biological preference are summarised. Combining eco-logical criteria with hydrodynamic flow patterns is illustrated for producing discrete habitat fields which were then spatially and temporarily integrated in ecohydraulic analysis.
K Malonza, Patrick
The Sagalla caecilian (Boulengerula niedeni) is an endangered amphibian endemic to Sagalla Hill in the Taita Hills. This burrowing worm-like species prefers soft soil with high moisture and organic matter. The major threats to the Sagalla caecilian are soil erosion caused by steep slopes, bare ground and water siphoning/soil hardening from exotic eucalyptus trees. The purpose of this study was to get a better understanding of the local people's attitude towards this species and how they can contribute to its continued conservation through restoration of its remaining habitat. In this study, it was found that 96% of Sagalla people are aware of the species, its habits and its association with soils high in organic matter. It was also found that 96% of Sagalla people use organic manure from cow dung in their farms. Habitat restoration through planting of indigenous plants was found to be ongoing, especially on compounds of public institutions as well as on private lands. Although drought was found to be a challenge for seedlings development especially on the low elevation sites, destruction by livestock especially during the dry season is also a major threat. In this study, it was recommended that any future habitat restoration initiative should include strong chain-link fencing to protect the seedlings from livestock activity. Recognizing that the preferred habitats for the species are in the valleys, systematic planting of keystone plant species such as fig trees (Ficus) creates the best microhabitats. These are better than general woodlots of indigenous trees.
Dale R. Seip
Full Text Available Woodland caribou (Rangifer tarandus caribou in British Columbia inhabit a wide variety of forest ecosystems. Numerous research projects have provided information that has been used to develop caribou habitat management recommendations for different areas. Recently, the province has implemented guidelines to protect biodiversity that are based on an ecosystem management strategy of mimicking natural forest conditions. There is a great deal of similarity between caribou management recommendations and biodiversity recommendations within different forest types. In mountain caribou habitat, both approaches recommend maintaining a landscape dominated by old and mature forests, uneven-aged management, small cutblocks, and maintaining mature forest connectivity. In northern caribou habitat, both approaches recommend maintaining some older stands on the landscape (but less than for mountain caribou, even-aged management, and a mosaic of large harvest units and leave areas. The ecosystem management recommendations provide a useful foundation for caribou habitat conservation. More detailed information on caribou and other management objectives can then be used to fine-tune those recommendations.
Marcelo Fischer Barcellos dos Santos
Full Text Available Our goal is to communicate the occurrence of conservation concern bird species in an Atlantic Forest area of Rio Grande do Sul, in the town of Iraí (27°11’49”S, 53°14’32”W. Compositional data was collected from September 2006 to September 2008 through 364h of field work effort. We registered 23 bird species of conservation interest: sixteen are threatened with extinction in the state of Rio Grande do Sul, four are Near Threatened worldwide (including two regionally threatened, other four are near threatened regionally, and one species is uncommon in the state with poor records. Bird composition in the area shows the importance of conservation and restoration of forests in Iraí, as well as others located in the extreme north of Rio Grande do Sul, since these areas could represent one of the last remaining refuges for a great number of threatened bird species in that region.
An, Li; Liu, Jianguo; Linderman, Marc A. [Department of Fisheries and Wildlife, Michigan State University, 13 Natural Resources Building, 48824 East Lansing, MI (United States); Lupi, Frank [Departments of Agricultural Economics and Fisheries and Wildlife, Michigan State University, 213F Agriculture Hall, 48824 East Lansing, MI (United States); Huang, Jinyan [Wolong Nature Reserve Administration, Wenchuan County, 623002 Sichuan Province (China)
Despite its status as a nature reserve, Wolong Nature Reserve (China) has experienced continued loss of giant panda habitat due to human activities such as fuelwood collection. Electricity, though available throughout Wolong, has not replaced fuelwood as an energy source. We used stated preference data obtained from in-person interviews to estimate a random utility model of the choice of adopting electricity for cooking and heating. Willingness to switch to electricity was explained by demographic and electricity factors (price, voltage, and outage frequency). In addition to price, non-price factors such as voltage and outage frequency significantly affect the demand. Thus, lowering electricity prices and increasing electricity quality would encourage local residents to switch from fuelwood to electricity and should be considered in the mix of policies to promote conservation of panda habitat.
An, Li; Liu, Jianguo; Linderman, Marc A.; Lupi, Frank; Huang, Jinyan
Despite its status as a nature reserve, Wolong Nature Reserve (China) has experienced continued loss of giant panda habitat due to human activities such as fuelwood collection. Electricity, though available throughout Wolong, has not replaced fuelwood as an energy source. We used stated preference data obtained from in-person interviews to estimate a random utility model of the choice of adopting electricity for cooking and heating. Willingness to switch to electricity was explained by demographic and electricity factors (price, voltage, and outage frequency). In addition to price, non-price factors such as voltage and outage frequency significantly affect the demand. Thus, lowering electricity prices and increasing electricity quality would encourage local residents to switch from fuelwood to electricity and should be considered in the mix of policies to promote conservation of panda habitat
Full Text Available Natura 2000 Habitat Conservation Status is currently evaluated based on fieldwork. However, this is proving to be unfeasible over large areas. The use of remote sensing is increasingly encouraged but covering the full range of ecological variables by such datasets and ensuring compatibility with the traditional assessment methodology has not been achieved yet. We aimed to test Airborne Laser Scanning (ALS as a source for mapping all variables required by the local official conservation status assessment scheme and to develop an automated method that calculates Natura 2000 conservation status at 0.5 m raster resolution for 24 km2 of Pannonic Salt Steppe habitat (code 1530. We used multi-temporal (summer and winter ALS point clouds with full-waveform recording and a density of 10 pt/m2. Some required variables were derived from ALS product rasters; others involved vegetation classification layers calculated by machine learning and fuzzy categorization. Thresholds separating favorable and unfavorable values of each variable required by the national assessment scheme were manually calibrated from 10 plots where field-based assessment was carried out. Rasters representing positive and negative scores for each input variable were integrated in a ruleset that exactly follows the Hungarian Natura 2000 assessment scheme for grasslands. Accuracy of each parameter and the final conservation status score and category was evaluated by 10 independent assessment plots. We conclude that ALS is a suitable data source for Natura 2000 assessments in grasslands, and that the national grassland assessment scheme can successfully be used as a GIS processing model for conservation status, ensuring that the output is directly comparable with traditional field based assessments.
Howard B Wilson
Full Text Available The Sumatran orangutan is currently listed by the IUCN as critically endangered and the Bornean species as endangered. Unless effective conservation measures are enacted quickly, most orangutan populations without adequate protection face a dire future. Two main strategies are being pursued to conserve orangutans: (i rehabilitation and reintroduction of ex-captive or displaced individuals; and (ii protection of their forest habitat to abate threats like deforestation and hunting. These strategies are often mirrored in similar programs to save other valued and endangered mega-fauna. Through GIS analysis, collating data from across the literature, and combining this information within a modelling and decision analysis framework, we analysed which strategy or combination of strategies is the most cost-effective at maintaining wild orangutan populations, and under what conditions. We discovered that neither strategy was optimal under all circumstances but was dependent on the relative cost per orangutan, the timescale of management concern, and the rate of deforestation. Reintroduction, which costs twelve times as much per animal as compared to protection of forest, was only a cost-effective strategy at very short timescales. For time scales longer than 10-20 years, forest protection is the more cost-efficient strategy for maintaining wild orangutan populations. Our analyses showed that a third, rarely utilised strategy is intermediate: introducing sustainable logging practices and protection from hunting in timber production forest. Maximum long-term cost-efficiency is achieved by working in conservation forest. However, habitat protection involves addressing complex conservation issues and conflicting needs at the landscape level. We find a potential resolution in that well-managed production forests could achieve intermediate conservation outcomes. This has broad implications for sustaining biodiversity more generally within an economically
Wilson, Howard B; Meijaard, Erik; Venter, Oscar; Ancrenaz, Marc; Possingham, Hugh P
The Sumatran orangutan is currently listed by the IUCN as critically endangered and the Bornean species as endangered. Unless effective conservation measures are enacted quickly, most orangutan populations without adequate protection face a dire future. Two main strategies are being pursued to conserve orangutans: (i) rehabilitation and reintroduction of ex-captive or displaced individuals; and (ii) protection of their forest habitat to abate threats like deforestation and hunting. These strategies are often mirrored in similar programs to save other valued and endangered mega-fauna. Through GIS analysis, collating data from across the literature, and combining this information within a modelling and decision analysis framework, we analysed which strategy or combination of strategies is the most cost-effective at maintaining wild orangutan populations, and under what conditions. We discovered that neither strategy was optimal under all circumstances but was dependent on the relative cost per orangutan, the timescale of management concern, and the rate of deforestation. Reintroduction, which costs twelve times as much per animal as compared to protection of forest, was only a cost-effective strategy at very short timescales. For time scales longer than 10-20 years, forest protection is the more cost-efficient strategy for maintaining wild orangutan populations. Our analyses showed that a third, rarely utilised strategy is intermediate: introducing sustainable logging practices and protection from hunting in timber production forest. Maximum long-term cost-efficiency is achieved by working in conservation forest. However, habitat protection involves addressing complex conservation issues and conflicting needs at the landscape level. We find a potential resolution in that well-managed production forests could achieve intermediate conservation outcomes. This has broad implications for sustaining biodiversity more generally within an economically productive landscape
Sofaer, Helen R.; Skagen, Susan K.; Barsugli, Joseph J.; Rashford, Benjamin S.; Reese, Gordon C.; Hoeting, Jennifer A.; Wood, Andrew W.; Noon, Barry R.
Climate change poses major challenges for conservation and management because it alters the area, quality, and spatial distribution of habitat for natural populations. To assess species’ vulnerability to climate change and target ongoing conservation investments, researchers and managers often consider the effects of projected changes in climate and land use on future habitat availability and quality and the uncertainty associated with these projections. Here, we draw on tools from hydrology and climate science to project the impact of climate change on the density of wetlands in the Prairie Pothole Region of the USA, a critical area for breeding waterfowl and other wetland-dependent species. We evaluate the potential for a trade-off in the value of conservation investments under current and future climatic conditions and consider the joint effects of climate and land use. We use an integrated set of hydrological and climatological projections that provide physically based measures of water balance under historical and projected future climatic conditions. In addition, we use historical projections derived from ten general circulation models (GCMs) as a baseline from which to assess climate change impacts, rather than historical climate data. This method isolates the impact of greenhouse gas emissions and ensures that modeling errors are incorporated into the baseline rather than attributed to climate change. Our work shows that, on average, densities of wetlands (here defined as wetland basins holding water) are projected to decline across the U.S. Prairie Pothole Region, but that GCMs differ in both the magnitude and the direction of projected impacts. However, we found little evidence for a shift in the locations expected to provide the highest wetland densities under current vs. projected climatic conditions. This result was robust to the inclusion of projected changes in land use under climate change. We suggest that targeting conservation towards wetland
Zion, Michal; Spektor-Levy, Ornit; Orchan, Yotam; Shwartz, Assaf; Sadeh, Irit; Kark, Salit
Among potential topics in the new science of biodiversity, understanding the characteristics and impact of invasive birds is an attractive subject to include as part of junior high school biology studies. Birds are aesthetic and raise curiosity. Curiosity about birds, combined with field observations, can stimulate students to ask authentic…
Benjamin M Croak
Full Text Available A detailed understanding of how extensively animals move through the landscape, and the habitat features upon which they rely, can identify conservation priorities and thus inform management planning. For many endangered species, information on habitat use either is sparse, or is based upon studies from a small part of the species' range. The broad-headed snake (Hoplocephalus bungaroides is restricted to a specialized habitat (sandstone outcrops and nearby forests within a small geographic range in south-eastern Australia. Previous research on this endangered taxon was done at a single site in the extreme south of the species' geographic range. We captured and radio-tracked 9 adult broad-headed snakes at sites in the northern part of the species' distribution, to evaluate the generality of results from prior studies, and to identify critical habitat components for this northern population. Snakes spent most of winter beneath sun-warmed rocks then shifted to tree hollows in summer. Thermal regimes within retreat-sites support the hypothesis that this shift is thermally driven. Intervals between successive displacements were longer than in the southern snakes but dispersal distances per move and home ranges were similar. Our snakes showed non-random preferences both in terms of macrohabitat (e.g., avoidance of some vegetation types and microhabitat (e.g., frequent use of hollow-bearing trees. Despite many consistencies, the ecology of this species differs enough between southern and northern extremes of its range that managers need to incorporate information on local features to most effectively conserve this threatened reptile.
Croak, Benjamin M.; Crowther, Mathew S.; Webb, Jonathan K.; Shine, Richard
A detailed understanding of how extensively animals move through the landscape, and the habitat features upon which they rely, can identify conservation priorities and thus inform management planning. For many endangered species, information on habitat use either is sparse, or is based upon studies from a small part of the species’ range. The broad-headed snake (Hoplocephalus bungaroides) is restricted to a specialized habitat (sandstone outcrops and nearby forests) within a small geographic range in south-eastern Australia. Previous research on this endangered taxon was done at a single site in the extreme south of the species’ geographic range. We captured and radio-tracked 9 adult broad-headed snakes at sites in the northern part of the species’ distribution, to evaluate the generality of results from prior studies, and to identify critical habitat components for this northern population. Snakes spent most of winter beneath sun-warmed rocks then shifted to tree hollows in summer. Thermal regimes within retreat-sites support the hypothesis that this shift is thermally driven. Intervals between successive displacements were longer than in the southern snakes but dispersal distances per move and home ranges were similar. Our snakes showed non-random preferences both in terms of macrohabitat (e.g., avoidance of some vegetation types) and microhabitat (e.g., frequent use of hollow-bearing trees). Despite many consistencies, the ecology of this species differs enough between southern and northern extremes of its range that managers need to incorporate information on local features to most effectively conserve this threatened reptile. PMID:23613912
Horasa Lima Silva-Andrade
Full Text Available Farmers' perceptions of birds' interactions with agricultural production systems are fundamental to species conservation efforts. In the present study, we evaluated the perceptions of birds held by farmers who engage in conventional and non-conventional agricultural production processes and the implications of potential differences in these perceptions on species conservation. To accomplish this, data were collected using questionnaires, semi-structured interviews, and other complementary sources of information gathered from 191 farmers in northeastern Brazil. Although some similarities were identified among the farmers in their perceptions and local ecological knowledge (LEK of birds, differences existed between the conventional and non-conventional farmers in their attitudes toward, conflicts with, and usage of bird species. Compared to the conventional farmers, the non-conventional farmers could identify more bird species, possessed more favorable attitudes toward birds, and engaged in practices more beneficial to the conservation of avifauna. The perceptions that were identified were related to the type of agriculture practiced, and such perceptions may affect the conservation of bird species. Therefore, the adoption of certain agricultural practices has important implications for conservation. Our results indicate the need for investment in public policies, programs and actions that account for farmers' knowledge and perceptions. Such investments will contribute to the development and adoption of practices supporting wild bird conservation in agricultural areas.
Silva-Andrade, Horasa Lima; de Andrade, Luciano Pires; Muniz, Lauana Souza; Telino-Júnior, Wallace Rodrigues; Albuquerque, Ulysses Paulino; Lyra-Neves, Rachel Maria
Farmers' perceptions of birds' interactions with agricultural production systems are fundamental to species conservation efforts. In the present study, we evaluated the perceptions of birds held by farmers who engage in conventional and non-conventional agricultural production processes and the implications of potential differences in these perceptions on species conservation. To accomplish this, data were collected using questionnaires, semi-structured interviews, and other complementary sources of information gathered from 191 farmers in northeastern Brazil. Although some similarities were identified among the farmers in their perceptions and local ecological knowledge (LEK) of birds, differences existed between the conventional and non-conventional farmers in their attitudes toward, conflicts with, and usage of bird species. Compared to the conventional farmers, the non-conventional farmers could identify more bird species, possessed more favorable attitudes toward birds, and engaged in practices more beneficial to the conservation of avifauna. The perceptions that were identified were related to the type of agriculture practiced, and such perceptions may affect the conservation of bird species. Therefore, the adoption of certain agricultural practices has important implications for conservation. Our results indicate the need for investment in public policies, programs and actions that account for farmers' knowledge and perceptions. Such investments will contribute to the development and adoption of practices supporting wild bird conservation in agricultural areas.
Van Dyck, Hans
There is a growing recognition for the significance of evolutionary thinking in ecology and conservation biology. However, ecology and conservation studies often work with species-specific, fixed traits that ignore intraspecific variation. The way the habitat of a species is considered is an example of typological thinking biased by human perception. Structural habitat units (e.g., land cover types) as perceived by humans may not represent functional habitat units for other organisms. Human activity may also interfere with the environmental information used by organisms. Therefore, the Umwelt-concept from ethology needs to be integrated in the way we think about habitat and habitat selection. It states that different organisms live in different perceptual worlds dealing with specific subsamples of the environment as a result of their evolutionary and developmental history. The resource-based habitat concept is a functional habitat model based on resource distributions (consumables and conditions) and individual movements. This behavioural approach takes into account aspects that relate to the perceptual world of organisms. This approach may offer new opportunities for conservation and may help avoid failures with habitat restoration. Perceptual ability may be subject to adaptive change, but it may also constrain organisms from showing adaptive behaviours in rapidly changing environments.
Reif, J.; Marhoul, P.; Čížek, O.; Konvička, Martin
Roč. 20, č. 14 (2011), s. 3645-3662 ISSN 0960-3115 R&D Projects: GA MŠk LC06073 Grant - others:Ministry of Environment of the Czech Republic(CZ) SP/2D3/153/08 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z50070508 Keywords : abundance * bird * disturbance Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour Impact factor: 2.238, year: 2011
Anders Pape Møller; Piotr Tryjanowski; Mario Díaz; Zbigniew Kwieciński; Piotr Indykiewicz; Cezary Mitrus; Artur Goławski; Michał Polakowski
Animals respond to approaching predators by taking flight at a distance that optimizes the costs and benefits of such flight. Previous studies have shown that urban populations of birds have shorter flight initiation distances than rural populations of the same species, that this difference is partly explained by differences in the community of predators, and that a longer history of urbanization implies a greater reduction in flight initiation distance in urban populations. The use of birdfe...
Blank, P.J.; Dively, G.P.; Gill, D.E.; Rewa, C.A.
Filter strips are strips of herbaceous vegetation planted along agricultural field margins adjacent to streams or wetlands and are designed to intercept sediment, nutrients, and agrichemicals. Roughly 16,000 ha of filter strips have been established in Maryland through the United States Department of Agriculture's Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program. Filter strips often represent the only uncultivated herbaceous areas on farmland in Maryland and therefore may be important habitat for early-successional bird species. Most filter strips in Maryland are planted to either native warm-season grasses or cool-season grasses and range in width from 10.7 m to 91.4 m. From 2004 to 2007 we studied the breeding and wintering bird communities in filter strips adjacent to wooded edges and non-buffered field edges and the effect that grass type and width of filter strips had on bird community composition. We used 5 bird community metrics (total bird density, species richness, scrub-shrub bird density, grassland bird density, and total avian conservation value), species-specific densities, nest densities, and nest survival estimates to assess the habitat value of filter strips for birds. Breeding and wintering bird community metrics were greater in filter strips than in non-buffered field edges but did not differ between cool-season and warm-season grass filter strips. Most breeding bird community metrics were negatively related to the percent cover of orchardgrass (Dactylis glomerata) in ???1 yr. Breeding bird density was greater in narrow (60 m) filter strips. Our results suggest that narrow filter strips adjacent to wooded edges can provide habitat for many bird species but that wide filter strips provide better habitat for grassland birds, particularly obligate grassland species. If bird conservation is an objective, avoid planting orchardgrass in filter strips and reduce or eliminate orchardgrass from filter strips through management practices. Copyright ?? 2011 The
Full Text Available The Corncrake is a strictly protected species in Hungary and a qualifying species of many Natura 2000 sites. Despite its Least concern global conservation status, it receives much attention and was elected as “Bird of the Year” by MME BirdLife Hungary in 2016. In this paper, we estimate its population trends and analyse the suitability of the protected area system and agri-environment schemes for the species. We compiled information on major threatening factors and conservation measures applied for the species. We reviewed international publications on the ecology and conservation management of the species to extract information for practical conservation. We estimated that 500–2000 pairs of Corncrakes breed in Hungary. Although their breeding sites are well covered by protected areas, Natura 2000 sites (42% and High Nature Value Areas (67%, their population has declined by 55% over the last 20 years. We found that most of the major threatening factors are addressed by conservation management, and appropriate measures are applied in most cases. Recent research findings and recommendations by the BirdLife International Corncrake Conservation Team suggest that mowing of grasslands around nesting places should be delayed until 1–15 August either in the entire field or at least on 2 hectares around nests. Prescriptions of agri-environment schemes should also be adjusted to the above requirements and more farmers should be encouraged to enrol in Corncrake conservation programmes. We strongly suggest that more emphasis should be devoted to combat important threats for the most important breeding sites such as aridification and flooding.
Loehle, C.; Van Deusen, P.; Wigley, T.B.; Mitchell, M.S.; Rutzmoser, S.H.; Aggett, J.; Beebe, J.A.; Smith, M.L.
Wildlife-habitat relationship models have sometimes been linked with forest simulators to aid in evaluating outcomes of forest management alternatives. However, linking wildlife-habitat models with harvest scheduling software would provide a more direct method for assessing economic and ecological implications of alternative harvest schedules in commercial forest operations. We demonstrate an approach for frontier analyses of wildlife benefits using the Habplan harvest scheduler and spatially explicit wildlife response models in the context of operational forest planning. We used the Habplan harvest scheduler to plan commercial forest management over a 40-year horizon at a landscape scale under five scenarios: unmanaged, an unlimited block-size option both with and without riparian buffers, three cases with different block-size restrictions, and a set-asides scenario in which older stands were withheld from cutting. The potential benefit to wildlife was projected based on spatial models of bird guild richness and species probability of detection. Harvested wood volume provided a measure of scenario costs, which provides an indication of management feasibility. Of nine species and guilds, none appeared to benefit from 50 m riparian buffers, response to an unmanaged scenario was mixed and expensive, and block-size restrictions (maximum harvest unit size) provided no apparent benefit and in some cases were possibly detrimental to bird richness. A set-aside regime, however, appeared to provide significant benefits to all species and groups, probably through increased landscape heterogeneity and increased availability of older forest. Our approach shows promise for evaluating costs and benefits of forest management guidelines in commercial forest enterprises and improves upon the state of the art by utilizing an optimizing harvest scheduler as in commercial forest management, multiple measures of biodiversity (models for multiple species and guilds), and spatially
Full Text Available In the present paper, are rendered the results of the research referring to the conservation status of the grasslands from two sites ‘Natura 2000’ located in Oltenia region, in South-Western part of Romania: ROSCI0202 Oltenia Forest Steppe and ROSCI0039 Ciuperceni - Desa. Within these sites, there are five habitats: 62C0* Ponto-Sarmatic steppes, 6260* Pannonic sand steppes, 6440 Alluvial meadows of river valleys of the Cnidion dubii, 6510 Lowland hay meadows (Alopecurus pratensis, Sanguisorba officinalis and 1530* Pannonic salt steppes and salt marshes. The investigation of the conservation status of these habitats was carried out by assessing their conservation status at EU level, namely by assigning them to one of the four categories – “favourable”, “unfavourable-inadequate”, “unfavourable-bad”, and “unknown” – according to the stated attributes for each habitat, to the threats of destruction and to the dangers that may lead to their destruction or disappearance. By applying the evaluation matrix of the conservation state of the five habitats from the two sites Natura 2000, only three of the five studied habitats have a good conservation status: 62C0* Ponto-Sarmatic steppes, 6260* Pannonic sand steppes, 6440 alluvial meadows of river valleys of the Cnidion dubii. The habitat 1530* Pannonic salt steppes and salt marshes have a good-moderate status while 6510 Lowland hay meadows (Alopecurus pratensis, Sanguisorba officinalis has amoderate-poor status. Referring to the characteristic structure and functions to the type of habitat, the research revealed that in numerous areas occupied by the five habitats good conservation conditions are not good.
The Grey-headed Parrot Poicephalus fuscicollis suahelicus has a widespread distribution in sub-Saharan Africa yet is uncommon in its natural range. In some areas seasonal movements are recorded. This study, conducted in north-eastern South Africa, showed that habitat use varied seasonally between two sites, Levubu ...
Kaiser, Sara A; Sillett, T Scott; Risk, Benjamin B; Webster, Michael S
Environmental factors can shape reproductive investment strategies and influence the variance in male mating success. Environmental effects on extrapair paternity have traditionally been ascribed to aspects of the social environment, such as breeding density and synchrony. However, social factors are often confounded with habitat quality and are challenging to disentangle. We used both natural variation in habitat quality and a food supplementation experiment to separate the effects of food availability-one key aspect of habitat quality-on extrapair paternity (EPP) and reproductive success in the black-throated blue warbler, Setophaga caerulescens. High natural food availability was associated with higher within-pair paternity (WPP) and fledging two broods late in the breeding season, but lower EPP. Food-supplemented males had higher WPP leading to higher reproductive success relative to controls, and when in low-quality habitat, food-supplemented males were more likely to fledge two broods but less likely to gain EPP. Our results demonstrate that food availability affects trade-offs in reproductive activities. When food constraints are reduced, males invest in WPP at the expense of EPP. These findings imply that environmental change could alter how individuals allocate their resources and affect the selective environment that drives variation in male mating success. © 2015 The Author(s) Published by the Royal Society. All rights reserved.
Chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes), our closest living relatives, are declining alarmingly in abundance and distribution all across Africa. Clearing of forests and woodlands has one of the most rapid and devastating impacts, leaving chimpanzees in isolated, small populations that face edge effects and elevated risk of extinction. Satellite imagery could be a powerful tool to map chimpanzee habitats and threats at the landscape scale even in the most remote, difficult to access areas. However, few applications exist to demonstrate how remote sensing methods can be used in Africa for chimpanzee research and conservation in practice. In chapter one, I investigate the use of Landsat MSS and ETM+ satellite imagery to monitor dry tropical forests and miombo woodlands change between 1972-1999 inside and outside Gombe National Park, Tanzania. I show that canopy cover increased in the northern and middle parts of the park but with severe canopy loss outside protected area. Deforestation has had unequal effects on the three chimpanzee communities inside the park. The Kasekela chimpanzees have been least affected by canopy loss outside the park. In contrast, the Mitumba and Kalande communities have likely lost key range areas. In chapter two, I use 25 years of data on Gombe chimpanzees to investigate to what extent vegetation variables detected from multi-temporal satellite images can be applied to understand changes in chimpanzee feeding and party size. NDVI positively correlated with the time chimpanzees spent feeding but had no affect on the average number of adult males in the party. Instead the number of males in the party increased with proximity to hostile neighboring communities. In chapter three, I use Landsat and SPOT satellite imagery as the basis for Threat Reduction Assessment to evaluate conservation outcomes of a ten year community based conservation project in Tanzania. The findings suggest that the remote sensing methods applied in this study could provide new
Šálek, Martin; Havlíček, J.; Riegert, J.; Nešpor, M.; Fuchs, R.; Kipson, M.
Roč. 24, č. 1 (2015), s. 10-16 ISSN 1617-1381 Institutional support: RVO:68081766 Keywords : Central Europe * Dairy farms * Granivorous birds * Habitat preferences * Poultry keeping * Winter period Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour Impact factor: 2.220, year: 2015
Lawrence, William T.; Imhoff, Marc L.; Sisk, Thomas D.; Stutzer, David
The seasonally flooded forest and upland sites in the Kakadu National Park, near Jabiru, Northern Territories, Australia were the site of extensive field measurements, bird community observations and airborne remote sensing during an initial NASA/Jet Propulsion Lab AIRSAR campaign in 1993, a field visit in 1994 and combined remote sensing and field activities during the PACRIM I Project in fall 1996. The overarching purpose of these studies was to use remote sensing technology as a way to extend intensive avian biodiversity and census field observations, as well as structural vegetation measurements from a limited survey area to the regional scale. During these two visits to the Kakadu area, field measurements were made within the dominant forest types in this region, primarily mixed Eucalyptus sp. woodlands, and open- and closed-forest sites dominated by Melaleuca sp. across a range of dry to perennially-flooded sites. Bird community measurements showed vegetation structure is needed to understand habitat relationships. A major vegetation difference between the two years was an increase of 2-3 times in leaf area index at comparison sites from 1994 to 1996. The greatest LAI at any site was 2.52 in the wet Melaleuca site near Munmalary in 1994.
Wearmouth, Victoria J; Sims, David W
Sexual segregation occurs when members of a species separate such that the sexes live apart, either singly or in single-sex groups. It can be broadly categorised into two types: habitat segregation and social segregation. Sexual segregation is a behavioural phenomenon that is widespread in the animal kingdom yet the underlying causes remain poorly understood. Sexual segregation has been widely studied among terrestrial mammals such as ungulates, but it has been less well documented in the marine environment. This chapter clarifies terms and concepts which have emerged from the investigation of sexual segregation in terrestrial ecology and examines how a similar methodological approach may be complicated by differences of marine species. Here we discuss the behavioural patterns of sexual segregation among marine fish, reptile, bird and mammal species. Five hypotheses have been forwarded to account for sexual segregation, largely emerging from investigation of sexual segregation in terrestrial ungulates: the predation risk, forage selection, activity budget, thermal niche-fecundity and social factors hypotheses. These mechanisms are reviewed following careful assessment of their applicability to marine vertebrate species and case studies of marine vertebrates which support each mechanism recounted. Rigorous testing of all hypotheses is lacking from both the terrestrial and marine vertebrate literature and those analyses which have been attempted are often confounded by factors such as sexual body-size dimorphism. In this context, we indicate the value of studying model species which are monomorphic with respect to body size and discuss possible underlying causes for sexual segregation in this species. We also discuss why it is important to understand sexual segregation, for example, by illustrating how differential exploitation of the sexes by humans can lead to population decline.
Eugene S. Morton; Bridget J. M. Stutchbury
Migratory birds are birds of two worlds, breeding in the temperate zone then living as tropical birds for most of the year. We show two aspects of this unique biology that are important considerations for their conservation. First, habitat selection for breeding must include their need for extra-pair mating opportunities. Second, non-breeding distributions in tropical...
Ecosystem services have become a key issue of this century in resource management, conservation planning, and environmental decision analysis. Mapping and quantifying ecosystem services have become strategic national interests for integrating ecology with economics to help under...
Jason A. Hubbart
Full Text Available Attribution of in-stream biological impairment to anthropogenic activities and prioritization for restoration and/or conservation can be challenging in contemporary mixed-land-use watersheds. Critical information necessary to improve decision making can be costly and labor intensive, and thus unobtainable for many municipalities. A reduced cost, rapid stream physical habitat assessment (rPHA can yield information that, when paired with land use data may reveal causal patterns in aquatic physical habitat degradation, and thus assist targeting sites for restoration. However, a great deal of work is needed to reduce associated costs, and validate the potential of rPHA for documenting fine-scale incremental change in physical habitat conditions in complex contemporary watersheds. The following commentary serves to draw attention to rPHA challenges and research needs including (but not limited to field-based validation and optimization of new remote sensing technologies, evaluation of the accuracy and representativeness of rapid vegetation survey methods, refinement of analytical methods, and consideration of legacy land use impacts and hydrologic system evolution in rPHA results interpretation. Considering the value of rPHA-generated data for improvement of watershed resource management, such challenges constitute timely, high-impact research opportunities for investigators wishing to advance complex, contemporary aquatic ecosystem management.
K. Anne-Isola Nekaris
Full Text Available Flagship species are traditionally large, charismatic animals used to rally conservation efforts. Accepted flagship definitions suggest they need only fulfil a strategic role, unlike umbrella species that are used to shelter cohabitant taxa. The criteria used to select both flagship and umbrella species may not stand up in the face of dramatic forest loss, where remaining fragments may only contain species that do not suit either set of criteria. The Cinderella species concept covers aesthetically pleasing and overlooked species that fulfil the criteria of flagships or umbrellas. Such species are also more likely to occur in fragmented habitats. We tested Cinderella criteria on mammals in the fragmented forests of the Sri Lankan Wet Zone. We selected taxa that fulfilled both strategic and ecological roles. We created a shortlist of ten species, and from a survey of local perceptions highlighted two finalists. We tested these for umbrella characteristics against the original shortlist, utilizing Maximum Entropy (MaxEnt modelling, and analysed distribution overlap using ArcGIS. The criteria highlighted Loris tardigradus tardigradus and Prionailurus viverrinus as finalists, with the former having highest flagship potential. We suggest Cinderella species can be effective conservation surrogates especially in habitats where traditional flagship species have been extirpated.
The positive association between habitat heterogeneity and species diversity has been well-documented for many taxa at various spatial and temporal scales, and the maintenance of habitat heterogeneity in agricultural landscapes has been promoted as a key strategy in efforts to conserve biodiversity....
Rodrigues, V. B.
Full Text Available We evaluated the effect of anthropogenic disturbance on nest predation in Brazilian Atlantic forest. Artificial nests were distributed in fragments with distinct degrees of anthropogenic disturbance. We found a higher proportion of egg predation on the ground and in the fragments classified as ‘high’ and ‘medium’ disturbance than in the fragments classified as ‘low’ degree of disturbance. The higher egg predation is probably linked to low structural complexity of vegetation and high accessibility of these areas to opportunistic predators. We suggest that forest fragments with high vegetation complexity and low human activity should be preserved in order to maintain the biodiversity of bird species.
Carvell, C; Osborne, J L; Bourke, A F G; Freeman, S N; Pywell, R F; Heard, M S
The global decline of insect pollinators, especially bees, is cause for concern, and there is an urgent need for cost-effective conservation measures in agricultural landscapes. While landscape context and habitat quality are known to influence species richness and abundance of bees, there is a lack of evidence from manipulative field experiments on bees' responses to adaptive management across differently structured landscapes. We present the results of a large-scale study that investigated the effects of a targeted agri-environment scheme (AES) on bumble bees (Bombus spp.) over three years in the United Kingdom. Forage patches of different sizes were sown with a conservation flower mixture across eight sites covering a broad range of agricultural land use types. Species richness and worker densities (especially of the longer-tongued Bombus species for which the mixture was targeted) were significantly higher on sown forage patches than on existing non-crop control habitats throughout the three-year study, but the strength of this response depended on both the proportions of arable land and abundance of herbaceous forb species in the surrounding landscape. The size of sown patches also affected worker density, with smaller patches (0.25 ha) attracting higher densities of some species than larger patches (1.0 ha). Our models show that a targeted AES can deliver greater net benefits in more intensively farmed areas, in terms of the number and species richness of bumble bees supported, than in heterogeneous landscapes where other foraging habitats exist. These findings serve to strengthen the evidence base for extending agri-environment schemes to boost declining pollinator populations to a larger number of agricultural landscapes across the globe.
Kallimanis, A S; Panitsa, M; Dimopoulos, P
EU biodiversity conservation policy is based on the Habitats Directive (92/43/EC), which aims that habitat types and species of Community interest should reach 'favourable conservation status'. To this end, Member States are obliged to perform periodic assessment of species and habitat conservation status through biodiversity monitoring, which, in almost all cases, was performed by experts implementing standardized field protocols. Here, we examine the quality of data collected in the field by non-experts (citizen scientists) for the conservation status assessment of habitat types, and specifically for the criteria 'typical species', 'specific structures and functions', and 'pressures and threats'. This task is complicated and demands different types of field data. We visited two Natura 2000 sites and investigated four habitat types (two in each site) with non-experts and compared their data to the data collected by experts for accuracy, completeness and spatial arrangement. The majority of the non-expert data were accurate (i.e. non-experts recorded information they observed in the field), but they were incomplete (i.e. non-experts detected less information than the experts). Also, non-experts chose their sampling locations closer to the edge of the habitat, i.e. in more marginal conditions and thus in potentially more degraded conditions, than experts.
Tara G Martin
Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Migratory animals comprise a significant portion of biodiversity worldwide with annual investment for their conservation exceeding several billion dollars. Designing effective conservation plans presents enormous challenges. Migratory species are influenced by multiple events across land and sea-regions that are often separated by thousands of kilometres and span international borders. To date, conservation strategies for migratory species fail to take into account how migratory animals are spatially connected between different periods of the annual cycle (i.e. migratory connectivity bringing into question the utility and efficiency of current conservation efforts. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Here, we report the first framework for determining an optimal conservation strategy for a migratory species. Employing a decision theoretic approach using dynamic optimization, we address the problem of how to allocate resources for habitat conservation for a Neotropical-Nearctic migratory bird, the American redstart Setophaga ruticilla, whose winter habitat is under threat. Our first conservation strategy used the acquisition of winter habitat based on land cost, relative bird density, and the rate of habitat loss to maximize the abundance of birds on the wintering grounds. Our second strategy maximized bird abundance across the entire range of the species by adding the constraint of maintaining a minimum percentage of birds within each breeding region in North America using information on migratory connectivity as estimated from stable-hydrogen isotopes in feathers. We show that failure to take into account migratory connectivity may doom some regional populations to extinction, whereas including information on migratory connectivity results in the protection of the species across its entire range. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: We demonstrate that conservation strategies for migratory animals depend critically upon two factors: knowledge of
Athira, K; Reddy, C Sudhakar; Saranya, K R L; Joseph, Shijo; Jaishanker, R
Spatially explicit approach is essential to prioritise the ecosystems for biodiversity conservation. In the present study, the conservation status of 20 protected areas of the Western Ghats of Kerala, India, was analysed based on long-term changes in forests (1975-1985-1995-2005-2013), landscape level changes in fragmentation and forest fires (2005-2015). This study has shown that a significant forest loss occurred in protected areas before declaration. Idukki is one of the major protected areas which showed a drastic reduction (18.83%) in its forest cover. During 1985-1995, Periyar tiger reserve had lost 24.19 km 2 core 3 forest area followed by Peppara (18.54 km 2 ), Parambikulam (17.93 km 2 ), Chimmony (17.71 km 2 ), Peechi-Vazhani (12.31 km 2 ) and Neyyar (11.67 km 2 ). An area of 71.33 km 2 of the protected area was affected by fires in 2014. Overall protected area-wise decadal analysis indicates Periyar has the highest number of fire incidences followed by Wayanad, Kurinjimala, Silent Valley and Eravikulam. Disturbances in the form of fires and fragmentation still exist and may have significant conservation threat to flora and fauna. Among protected areas, many are having a probability to go under threat or dynamic stage. Chinnar, Thattekkad and Kurinjimala sanctuaries are representing high levels of vulnerability, or they are near to decline stage. Habitat level monitoring of the anthropogenic disturbances can be efficiently useful for the strategic conservation planning. The present study has provided geospatial database on spatial patterns of deforestation, fragmentation and forest fires in protected areas of Kerala. Conservation prioritization approach based on these parameters will be useful for the strategic planning in the state of Kerala.
Tarjuelo, Rocío; Morales, Manuel B; Arroyo, Beatriz; Mañosa, Santiago; Bota, Gerard; Casas, Fabián; Traba, Juan
Interspecific competition is a dominant force in animal communities that induces niche shifts in ecological and evolutionary time. If competition occurs, niche expansion can be expected when the competitor disappears because resources previously inaccessible due to competitive constraints can then be exploited (i.e., ecological release). Here, we aimed to determine the potential effects of interspecific competition between the little bustard ( Tetrax tetrax ) and the great bustard ( Otis tarda ) using a multidimensional niche approach with habitat distribution data. We explored whether the degree of niche overlap between the species was a density-dependent function of interspecific competition. We then looked for evidences of ecological release by comparing measures of niche breadth and position of the little bustard between allopatric and sympatric situations. Furthermore, we evaluated whether niche shifts could depend not only on the presence of great bustard but also on the density of little and great bustards. The habitat niches of these bustard species partially overlapped when co-occurring, but we found no relationship between degree of overlap and great bustard density. In the presence of the competitor, little bustard's niche was displaced toward increased use of the species' primary habitat. Little bustard's niche breadth decreased proportionally with great bustard density in sympatric sites, in consistence with theory. Overall, our results suggest that density-dependent variation in little bustard's niche is the outcome of interspecific competition with the great bustard. The use of computational tools like kernel density estimators to obtain multidimensional niches should bring novel insights on how species' ecological niches behave under the effects of interspecific competition in ecological communities.
Gomes, L.G.L.; Oostra, V.; Nijman, V.; Cleef, A.M.; Kappelle, M.
In view of the continued decline in tropical forest cover around the globe, forest restoration has become a key tool in tropical rainforest conservation. One of the main - and least expensive - restoration strategies is natural forest regeneration. By aiding forest seed influx both into disturbed
Dodrill, Michael J.; Yackulic, Charles B.; Gerig, Brandon; Pine, William E.; Korman, Josh; Finch, Colton
Many management actions in aquatic ecosystems are directed at restoring or improving specific habitats to benefit fish populations. In the Grand Canyon reach of the Colorado River, experimental flow operations as part of the Glen Canyon Dam Adaptive Management Program have been designed to restore sandbars and associated backwater habitats. Backwaters can have warmer water temperatures than other habitats, and native fish, including the federally endangered humpback chub Gila cypha, are frequently observed in backwaters, leading to a common perception that this habitat is critical for juvenile native fish conservation. However, it is unknown how fish densities in backwaters compare with that in other habitats or what proportion of juvenile fish populations reside in backwaters. Here, we develop and fit multi-species hierarchical models to estimate habitat-specific abundances and densities of juvenile humpback chub, bluehead suckerCatostomus discobolus, flannelmouth sucker Catostomus latipinnis and speckled dace Rhinichthys osculus in a portion of the Colorado River. Densities of all four native fish were greatest in backwater habitats in 2009 and 2010. However, backwaters are rare and ephemeral habitats, so they contain only a small portion of the overall population. For example, the total abundance of juvenile humpback chub in this study was much higher in talus than in backwater habitats. Moreover, when we extrapolated relative densities based on estimates of backwater prevalence directly after a controlled flood, the majority of juvenile humpback chub were still found outside of backwaters. This suggests that the role of controlled floods in influencing native fish population trends may be limited in this section of the Colorado River.
Xiaofeng, Luan; Yi, Qu; Diqiang, Li; Shirong, Liu; Xiulei, Wang; Bo, Wu; Chunquan, Zhu
The Amur Tiger (Panthera tigris altaica) is one of the world's most endangered species. Recently, habitat fragmentation, food scarcity and human hunting have drastically reduced the population size and distribution areas of Amur tigers in the wild, leaving them on the verge of extinction. Presently, they are only found in the north-eastern part of China. In this study, we developed a reference framework using methods and technologies of analytic hierarchy process (AHP), remote sensing (RS), geographic information system (GIS), GAP analysis and Natural Break (Jenks) classification to evaluate the habitat and to set the conservation priorities for Amur tigers in eastern areas of Heilongjiang and Jilin Provinces of northeast China. We proposed a Habitat Suitability Index (HSI) incorporating 7 factors covering natural conditions and human disturbance. Based on the HSI values, the suitability was classified into five levels from the most to not suitable. Finally, according to results of GAP analysis, we identified six conservation priorities and designed a conservation landscape incorporating four new nature reserves, enlarging two existing ones, and creating four linkages for Amur tigers in northeast China. The case study showed that the core habitats (the most suitable and highly suitable habitats) identified for Amur tigers covered 35,547 km(2), accounting for approximately 26.71% of the total study area (1,33,093 km(2)). However, existing nature reserves protected only (7124 km(2) or) 20.04% of the identified core habitats. Thus, enlargement of current reserves is necessary and urgent for the tiger's conservation and restoration. Moreover, the establishment of wildlife corridors linking core habitats will provide an efficient reserve network for tiger conservation to maintain the evolutionary potential of Amur tigers facing environmental changes. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Rodney B. Siegel; Peter Pyle; James H. Thorne; Andrew J. Holguin; Christine A. Howell; Sarah Stock; Morgan W. Tingley
In a rapidly changing climate, effective bird conservation requires not only reliable information about the current vulnerability of species of conservation concern, but also credible projections of their future vulnerability. Such projections may enable managers to preempt or reduce emerging climate-related threats through appropriate habitat management. We used NatureServe's Climate Change Vulnerability Index (CCVI) to predict vulnerability to climate change of 168 bird species that breed i...
Kent, Flora E A; Mair, James M; Newton, Jason; Lindenbaum, Charles; Porter, Joanne S; Sanderson, William G
Horse mussel reefs (Modiolus modiolus) are biodiversity hotspots afforded protection by Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) in the NE Atlantic. In this study, horse mussel reefs, cobble habitats and sandy habitats were assessed using underwater visual census and drop-down video techniques in three UK regions. Megafauna were enumerated, differences in community composition and individual species abundances were analysed. Samples of conspicuous megafauna were also collected from horse mussel reefs in Orkney for stable isotope analysis. Communities of conspicuous megafauna were different between horse mussel habitats and other habitats throughout their range. Three commercially important species: whelks (Buccinum undatum), queen scallops (Aequipecten opercularis) and spider crabs (Maja brachydactyla) were significantly more abundant (by as much as 20 times) on horse mussel reefs than elsewhere. Isotopic analysis provided insights into their trophic relationship with the horse mussel reef. Protection of M. modiolus habitat can achieve biodiversity conservation objectives whilst benefiting fisheries also. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
John M. Tirpak; D. Todd Jones-Farrand; Frank R. Thompson; Daniel J. Twedt; Charles K. Baxter; Jane A. Fitzgerald; William B. Uihlein
Emerging methods in habitat and wildlife population modeling promise new horizons in conservation but only if these methods provide robust population-habitat linkages. We used Breeding Bird Survey (BBS) data to verify and validate newly developed habitat suitability index (HSI) models for 40 priority landbird species in the Central Hardwoods and West Gulf Coastal Plain...
Amos, J. Nevil; Bennett, Andrew F.; Mac Nally, Ralph; Newell, Graeme; Pavlova, Alexandra; Radford, James Q.; Thomson, James R.; White, Matt; Sunnucks, Paul
Inference concerning the impact of habitat fragmentation on dispersal and gene flow is a key theme in landscape genetics. Recently, the ability of established approaches to identify reliably the differential effects of landscape structure (e.g. land-cover composition, remnant vegetation configuration and extent) on the mobility of organisms has been questioned. More explicit methods of predicting and testing for such effects must move beyond post hoc explanations for single landscapes and species. Here, we document a process for making a priori predictions, using existing spatial and ecological data and expert opinion, of the effects of landscape structure on genetic structure of multiple species across replicated landscape blocks. We compare the results of two common methods for estimating the influence of landscape structure on effective distance: least-cost path analysis and isolation-by-resistance. We present a series of alternative models of genetic connectivity in the study area, represented by different landscape resistance surfaces for calculating effective distance, and identify appropriate null models. The process is applied to ten species of sympatric woodland-dependant birds. For each species, we rank a priori the expectation of fit of genetic response to the models according to the expected response of birds to loss of structural connectivity and landscape-scale tree-cover. These rankings (our hypotheses) are presented for testing with empirical genetic data in a subsequent contribution. We propose that this replicated landscape, multi-species approach offers a robust method for identifying the likely effects of landscape fragmentation on dispersal. PMID:22363508
Bartels, Duane G.
The projects outlined in detail on the attached project reports were implemented from calendar year 2000 through 2002 in the Pataha Creek Watershed. The Pataha Creek Watershed was selected in 1993, along with the Tucannon and Asotin Creeks, as model watersheds by NPPC. In previous years, demonstration sites using riparian fencing, off site watering facilities, tree and shrub plantings and upland conservation practices were used for information and education and were the main focus of the implementation phase of the watershed plan. These practices were the main focus of the watershed plan to reduce the majority of the sediment entering the stream. Prior to 2000, several bank stabilization projects were installed but the installation costs became prohibitive and these types of projects were reduced in numbers over the following years. The years 2000 through 2002 were years where a focused effort was made to work on the upland conservation practices to reduce the sedimentation into Pataha Creek. Over 95% of the sediment entering the stream can be tied directly to the upland and riparian areas of the watershed. The Pataha Creek has steelhead in the upper reaches and native and planted rainbow trout in the mid to upper portion. Suckers, pikeminow and shiners inhabit the lower portion because of the higher water temperatures and lack of vegetation. The improvement of riparian habitat will improve habitat for the desired fish species. The lower portion of the Pataha Creek could eventually develop into spawning and rearing habitat for chinook salmon if some migration barriers are removed and habitat is restored. The upland projects completed during 2000 through 2002 were practices that reduce erosion from the cropland. Three-year continuous no-till projects were finishing up and the monitoring of this particular practice is ongoing. Its direct impact on soil erosion along with the economical aspects is being studied. Other practices such as terrace, waterway, sediment
Full Text Available We are developing a geospatial inventory tool that will guide habitat conservation, restoration and coastal development and benefit several stakeholders who seek mitigation and adaptation strategies to shoreline changes resulting from erosion and sea level rise. The ESRI Geoportal Server, which is a type of web portal used to find and access geospatial information in a central repository, is customized by adding a Geoinventory tool capability that allows any shoreline related data to be searched, displayed and analyzed on a map viewer. Users will be able to select sections of the shoreline and generate statistical reports in the map viewer to allow for comparisons. The tool will also facilitate map-based discussion forums and creation of user groups to encourage citizen participation in decisions regarding shoreline stabilization and restoration, thereby promoting sustainable coastal development.
Balaguera-Reina, Sergio A; Espinosa-Blanco, Ariel S; Morales-Betancourt, Mónica A; Seijas, Andrés E; Lasso, Carlos A; Antelo, Rafael; Densmore, Llewellyn D
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 still
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
Fox, Anthony David
Flyway level assessment of changes in abundance is essential to assess the effectiveness of conservation and management. Additional data on demographic rates (reproduction and survival) is needed to underpin the causes of changes. Data on immigration or emigration are helpful but more difficult t...... to obtain. There should be more attention to the effects of hunting on population sizes. Much can be achieved if citizen science (counters are almost all volunteers!) is well organised but on the basis of good professional leadership to get the maximum out of it....
Sindt, Anthony R.; Quist, Michael C.; Pierce, Clay
Fish and habitat data were collected from 84 wadeable stream reaches in the Mississippi River drainage of Iowa to predict the occurrences of seven fish species of greatest conservation need and to identify the relative importance of habitat variables measured at small (e.g., depth, velocity, and substrate) and large (e.g., stream order, elevation, and gradient) scales in terms of their influence on species occurrences. Multiple logistic regression analysis was used to predict fish species occurrences, starting with all possible combinations of variables (5 large-scale variables, 13 small-scale variables, and all 18 variables) but limiting the final models to a maximum of five variables. Akaike's information criterion was used to rank candidate models, weight model parameters, and calculate model-averaged predictions. On average, the correct classification rate (CCR = 80%) and Cohen's kappa (κ = 0.59) were greatest for multiple-scale models (i.e., those including both large-scale and small-scale variables), intermediate for small-scale models (CCR = 75%; κ = 0.49), and lowest for large-scale models (CCR = 73%; κ = 0.44). The occurrence of each species was associated with a unique combination of large-scale and small-scale variables. Our results support the necessity of understanding factors that constrain the distribution of fishes across spatial scales to ensure that management decisions and actions occur at the appropriate scale.
Li, Renqiang; Xu, Ming; Powers, Ryan; Zhao, Fen; Jetz, Walter; Wen, Hui; Sheng, Qingkai
Conservationists strive for practical, cost-effective management solutions to forest-based species conservation and climate change mitigation. However, this is compromised by insufficient information about the effectiveness of protected areas in increasing carbon storage, and the co-benefits of species and carbon conservation remain poorly understood. Here, we present the first rigorous quantitative assessment of the roles of giant panda nature reserves (NRs) in carbon sequestration, and explore the co-benefits of habitat conservation and climate change mitigation. Results show that more than 90% of the studied panda NRs are effective in increasing carbon storage, with the mean biomass carbon density of the whole NRs exhibiting a 4.2% higher growth rate compared with lands not declared as NRs over the period 1988-2012, while this effectiveness in carbon storage masks important patterns of spatial heterogeneity across the giant panda habitats. Moreover, the significant associations have been identified between biomass carbon density and panda's habitat suitability in ~85% NRs and at the NR level. These findings suggest that the planning for carbon and species conservation co-benefits would enhance the greatest return on limited conservation investments, which is a critical need for the giant panda after its conservation status has been downgraded from "endangered" to "vulnerable".
Estes, Jason G; Othman, Nurzhafarina; Ismail, Sulaiman; Ancrenaz, Marc; Goossens, Benoit; Ambu, Laurentius N; Estes, Anna B; Palmiotto, Peter A
The approximately 300 (298, 95% CI: 152-581) elephants in the Lower Kinabatangan Managed Elephant Range in Sabah, Malaysian Borneo are a priority sub-population for Borneo's total elephant population (2,040, 95% CI: 1,184-3,652). Habitat loss and human-elephant conflict are recognized as the major threats to Bornean elephant survival. In the Kinabatangan region, human settlements and agricultural development for oil palm drive an intense fragmentation process. Electric fences guard against elephant crop raiding but also remove access to suitable habitat patches. We conducted expert opinion-based least-cost analyses, to model the quantity and configuration of available suitable elephant habitat in the Lower Kinabatangan, and called this the Elephant Habitat Linkage. At 184 km(2), our estimate of available habitat is 54% smaller than the estimate used in the State's Elephant Action Plan for the Lower Kinabatangan Managed Elephant Range (400 km(2)). During high flood levels, available habitat is reduced to only 61 km(2). As a consequence, short-term elephant densities are likely to surge during floods to 4.83 km(-2) (95% CI: 2.46-9.41), among the highest estimated for forest-dwelling elephants in Asia or Africa. During severe floods, the configuration of remaining elephant habitat and the surge in elephant density may put two villages at elevated risk of human-elephant conflict. Lower Kinabatangan elephants are vulnerable to the natural disturbance regime of the river due to their limited dispersal options. Twenty bottlenecks less than one km wide throughout the Elephant Habitat Linkage, have the potential to further reduce access to suitable habitat. Rebuilding landscape connectivity to isolated habitat patches and to the North Kinabatangan Managed Elephant Range (less than 35 km inland) are conservation priorities that would increase the quantity of available habitat, and may work as a mechanism to allow population release, lower elephant density, reduce human
Jason G Estes
Full Text Available The approximately 300 (298, 95% CI: 152-581 elephants in the Lower Kinabatangan Managed Elephant Range in Sabah, Malaysian Borneo are a priority sub-population for Borneo's total elephant population (2,040, 95% CI: 1,184-3,652. Habitat loss and human-elephant conflict are recognized as the major threats to Bornean elephant survival. In the Kinabatangan region, human settlements and agricultural development for oil palm drive an intense fragmentation process. Electric fences guard against elephant crop raiding but also remove access to suitable habitat patches. We conducted expert opinion-based least-cost analyses, to model the quantity and configuration of available suitable elephant habitat in the Lower Kinabatangan, and called this the Elephant Habitat Linkage. At 184 km(2, our estimate of available habitat is 54% smaller than the estimate used in the State's Elephant Action Plan for the Lower Kinabatangan Managed Elephant Range (400 km(2. During high flood levels, available habitat is reduced to only 61 km(2. As a consequence, short-term elephant densities are likely to surge during floods to 4.83 km(-2 (95% CI: 2.46-9.41, among the highest estimated for forest-dwelling elephants in Asia or Africa. During severe floods, the configuration of remaining elephant habitat and the surge in elephant density may put two villages at elevated risk of human-elephant conflict. Lower Kinabatangan elephants are vulnerable to the natural disturbance regime of the river due to their limited dispersal options. Twenty bottlenecks less than one km wide throughout the Elephant Habitat Linkage, have the potential to further reduce access to suitable habitat. Rebuilding landscape connectivity to isolated habitat patches and to the North Kinabatangan Managed Elephant Range (less than 35 km inland are conservation priorities that would increase the quantity of available habitat, and may work as a mechanism to allow population release, lower elephant density, reduce
Martínez-Abraín, Alejandro; Jiménez, Juan
One speaks of ecological substitutes when an introduced species performs, to some extent, the ecosystem function of an extirpated native species. We suggest that a similar case exists for habitats. Species evolve within ecosystems, but habitats can be destroyed or modified by natural and human-made causes. Sometimes habitat alteration forces animals to move to or remain in a suboptimal habitat type. In that case, the habitat is considered a refuge, and the species is called a refugee. Typically refugee species have lower population growth rates than in their original habitats. Human action may lead to the unintended generation of artificial or semiartificial habitat types that functionally resemble the essential features of the original habitat and thus allow a population growth rate of the same magnitude or higher than in the original habitat. We call such areas substitution habitats and define them as human-made habitats within the focal species range that by chance are partial substitutes for the species' original habitat. We call species occupying a substitution habitat adopted species. These are 2 new terms in conservation biology. Examples of substitution habitats are dams for European otters, wheat and rice fields for many steppeland and aquatic birds, and urban areas for storks, falcons, and swifts. Although substitution habitats can bring about increased resilience against the agents of global change, the conservation of original habitat types remains a conservation priority. © 2016 Society for Conservation Biology.
Copplestone, D.; Wood, M.D.; Bielby, S.; Jones, S.R.; Vives, J.; Beresford, N.A.; Zinger, I.
In the UK, research funded by the Environment Agency/English Nature has provided a tool for calculating doses received by biota in coastal, freshwater and terrestrial ecosystems. The approach uses the reference organism concept where the organism of interest (feature organism) is equated to a particular reference organism (based on its physical geometry and ecology). The exposure of the reference organism, and consequently the feature organism, to different radionuclides and dose rates can be assessed using a spreadsheet-based mathematical tool. This assessment tool was developed in 2001 and provided an internationally recognised starting point from which more refined assessment tools could develop. As the need for conducting specific assessments under the UK Habitat Regulations became apparent, it was recognised that some targeted refinement of the assessment tool was required. One of the major problems with the tool related to a lack of species-specific data and a lack of information on certain radionuclides appearing in discharges that may be impacting on sites/species to be protected. A second research and development project was therefore undertaken to reduce the uncertainties associated with the assessment tool by collating additional species-specific data, developing a mathematical system for ensuring that the most appropriate reference organism was selected and extending the range of radionuclides included in the assessment. This specific expansion to the assessment tool was directed towards ensuring that species at Natura 2000 sites (Special Protection Areas (SPAs) and Special Areas of Conservation (SACs)) were adequately protected. The species targeted (feature species) for this assessment were species protected under the EC Habitats Directive and those that are characteristic of habitats protected under the Directive. The paper will show how typical dimensions of each feature species are collated and each feature species mathematically aligned with the
Cyrus M. Kavwele
Full Text Available Savannah ecosystems are currently facing a biome shift that changes grasslands to woody dominated landscapes, attributable to habitat degradation. In Ol Pejeta Conservancy (OPC, Euclea divinorum, an unpalatable and invasive woody species, is expanding to former savannah ecosystems with potential effects on herbivores key resources, wildlife species diversity, composition, and habitat use. We investigated wildlife species diversity, composition, and habitat preference or avoidance by wildlife in the conservancy. Infrared camera traps were deployed at the centroids of 2 km by 2 km, 50 cm above ground surface for 14 days and nights with 9 camera traps in each habitat type. Shannon wiener index revealed that wildlife species diversity was highest in E. divinorum dominated habitats and lowest in open grassland. Hierarchical Cluster Analysis revealed level of similarity in wildlife species composition between E. divinorum and mixed bushland. Jacobs index revealed that E. divinorum and mixed bushland were avoided by all guilds; however E. divinorum was significantly avoided while A. drepanolobium and open grassland were both preferred by all guilds. However, A. drepanolobium dominated habitats were significantly preferred compared to open grasslands. The findings are useful in management of sustainable ecosystems.
Breed, M F; Ottewell, K M; Gardner, M G; Marklund, M H K; Stead, M G; Harris, J B C; Lowe, A J
Habitat fragmentation has been shown to disrupt ecosystem processes such as plant-pollinator mutualisms. Consequently, mating patterns in remnant tree populations are expected to shift towards increased inbreeding and reduced pollen diversity, with fitness consequences for future generations. However, mating patterns and phenotypic assessments of open-pollinated progeny have rarely been combined in a single study. Here, we collected seeds from 37 Eucalyptus incrassata trees from contrasting stand densities following recent clearance in a single South Australian population (intact woodland=12.6 trees ha(-1); isolated pasture=1.7 trees ha(-1); population area=10 km(2)). 649 progeny from these trees were genotyped at eight microsatellite loci. We estimated genetic diversity, spatial genetic structure, indirect contemporary pollen flow and mating patterns for adults older than the clearance events and open-pollinated progeny sired post-clearance. A proxy of early stage progeny viability was assessed in a common garden experiment. Density had no impact on mating patterns, adult and progeny genetic diversity or progeny growth, but was associated with increased mean pollen dispersal. Weak spatial genetic structure among adults suggests high historical gene flow. We observed preliminary evidence for inbreeding depression related to stress caused by fungal infection, but which was not associated with density. Higher observed heterozygosities in adults compared with progeny may relate to weak selection on progeny and lifetime-accumulated mortality of inbred adults. E. incrassata appears to be resistant to the negative mating pattern and fitness changes expected within fragmented landscapes. This pattern is likely explained by strong outcrossing and regular long-distance pollen flow.
Sebastian Martinuzzi; Lee A. Vierling; William A. Gould; Kerri T. Vierling; Andrew T. Hudak
Remote sensing provides critical information for broad scale assessments of wildlife habitat distribution and conservation. However, such efforts have been typically unable to incorporate information about vegetation structure, a variable important for explaining the distribution of many wildlife species. We evaluated the consequences of incorporating remotely sensed...
... Take Permit and Habitat Conservation Plan for PacifiCorp Klamath Hydroelectric Project Interim... (Oncorhynchus kisutch) as a result of operation and maintenance of its Klamath Hydroelectric Project (Project... releases of flows from Link River dam for purposes of hydroelectric generation, (2) Operate and maintain...
... Take Permit and Habitat Conservation Plan for PacifiCorp Klamath Hydroelectric Project Interim... Hydroelectric Project (Project) in and near the Klamath River in Southern Oregon and Northern California and... maintenance of the Klamath Hydroelectric Project (Project) and implementation of the Plan for a 10-year period...
Rebolo-Ifrán, Natalia; Carrete, Martina; Sanz-Aguilar, Ana; Rodríguez-Martínez, Sol; Cabezas, Sonia; Marchant, Tracy A; Bortolotti, Gary R; Tella, José L
Urban endocrine ecology aims to understand how organisms cope with new sources of stress and maintain allostatic load to thrive in an increasingly urbanized world. Recent research efforts have yielded controversial results based on short-term measures of stress, without exploring its fitness effects. We measured feather corticosterone (CORTf, reflecting the duration and amplitude of glucocorticoid secretion over several weeks) and subsequent annual survival in urban and rural burrowing owls. This species shows high individual consistency in fear of humans (i.e., flight initiation distance, FID), allowing us to hypothesize that individuals distribute among habitats according to their tolerance to human disturbance. FIDs were shorter in urban than in rural birds, but CORTf levels did not differ, nor were correlated to FIDs. Survival was twice as high in urban as in rural birds and links with CORTf varied between habitats: while a quadratic relationship supports stabilizing selection in urban birds, high predation rates may have masked CORTf-survival relationship in rural ones. These results evidence that urban life does not constitute an additional source of stress for urban individuals, as shown by their near identical CORTf values compared with rural conspecifics supporting the non-random distribution of individuals among habitats according to their behavioural phenotypes.
The conservation status and trend of rare species groups should be better in landscapes with more forest cover due to the presence of quantitatively more habitat, and in the case of aquatic species,qualitatively better habitat. Arkansas provides habitat for 97 species of plants and animals considered critically imperiled globally or imperiled globally.T hese 97 species...
Blank, Peter J; Sample, David W; Williams, Carol L; Turner, Monica G
Demand for bioenergy is increasing, but the ecological consequences of bioenergy crop production on working lands remain unresolved. Corn is currently a dominant bioenergy crop, but perennial grasslands could produce renewable bioenergy resources and enhance biodiversity. Grassland bird populations have declined in recent decades and may particularly benefit from perennial grasslands grown for bioenergy. We asked how breeding bird community assemblages, vegetation characteristics, and biomass yields varied among three types of potential bioenergy grassland fields (grass monocultures, grass-dominated fields, and forb-dominated fields), and assessed tradeoffs between grassland biomass production and bird habitat. We also compared the bird communities in grassland fields to nearby cornfields. Cornfields had few birds compared to perennial grassland fields. Ten bird Species of Greatest Conservation Need (SGCN) were observed in perennial grassland fields. Bird species richness and total bird density increased with forb cover and were greater in forb-dominated fields than grass monocultures. SGCN density declined with increasing vertical vegetation density, indicating that tall, dense grassland fields managed for maximum biomass yield would be of lesser value to imperiled grassland bird species. The proportion of grassland habitat within 1 km of study sites was positively associated with bird species richness and the density of total birds and SGCNs, suggesting that grassland bioenergy fields may be more beneficial for grassland birds if they are established near other grassland parcels. Predicted total bird density peaked below maximum biomass yields and predicted SGCN density was negatively related to biomass yields. Our results indicate that perennial grassland fields could produce bioenergy feedstocks while providing bird habitat. Bioenergy grasslands promote agricultural multifunctionality and conservation of biodiversity in working landscapes.
Peter J Blank
Full Text Available Demand for bioenergy is increasing, but the ecological consequences of bioenergy crop production on working lands remain unresolved. Corn is currently a dominant bioenergy crop, but perennial grasslands could produce renewable bioenergy resources and enhance biodiversity. Grassland bird populations have declined in recent decades and may particularly benefit from perennial grasslands grown for bioenergy. We asked how breeding bird community assemblages, vegetation characteristics, and biomass yields varied among three types of potential bioenergy grassland fields (grass monocultures, grass-dominated fields, and forb-dominated fields, and assessed tradeoffs between grassland biomass production and bird habitat. We also compared the bird communities in grassland fields to nearby cornfields. Cornfields had few birds compared to perennial grassland fields. Ten bird Species of Greatest Conservation Need (SGCN were observed in perennial grassland fields. Bird species richness and total bird density increased with forb cover and were greater in forb-dominated fields than grass monocultures. SGCN density declined with increasing vertical vegetation density, indicating that tall, dense grassland fields managed for maximum biomass yield would be of lesser value to imperiled grassland bird species. The proportion of grassland habitat within 1 km of study sites was positively associated with bird species richness and the density of total birds and SGCNs, suggesting that grassland bioenergy fields may be more beneficial for grassland birds if they are established near other grassland parcels. Predicted total bird density peaked below maximum biomass yields and predicted SGCN density was negatively related to biomass yields. Our results indicate that perennial grassland fields could produce bioenergy feedstocks while providing bird habitat. Bioenergy grasslands promote agricultural multifunctionality and conservation of biodiversity in working landscapes.
Engstrom, R. Todd; van Riper, Charles
For many years, following the publication of Studies in Avian Biology No. 22 by Scott et al. (2001), ornithologists interested in Hawaiian birds have waited for the next synthesis volume on Hawaiian bird research. Finally there is one, and it is excellent. Thane Pratt and his colleagues from Hawaii have added another milestone in the punctuated equilibrium of information surrounding Hawaiian ornithology. Pratt states in the preface that he initiated this book because a U.S. Geological Survey review panel identified a recent lack of published information in the peer reviewed literature and the need to consolidate recent research efforts on birds in the Hawaiian Islands. This book goes a long way in solving that problem.
Full Text Available The migration of birds is a phenomenon that has been studied for more than two thousand years. Almost half of the extant bird species undertake migration, covering distances of a few tens of kilometres, up to a calculated 50 000 km per year, sometimes at heights exceeding 9 000 m, at very low temperatures, during the day or night. Some species fly actively and continuously for more than a 100 hours, whilst making efficient use of energy. A variety of strategies and physiological mechanisms are used to perform such feats, but many remain to be studied.
Peterjohn, Bruce G.
Located along Delaware Bay and the Atlantic coast, the state of Delaware’s significance for bird conservation has been well established for decades. The extensive tidal habitats and marshes bordering Delaware Bay host shorebird and waterbird populations of hemispheric importance, and protecting these populations has become an urgent conservation priority in recent years. Other habitats found in the state vary from barrier beaches to dry coniferous woods on the coastal plain and mesophytic communities along the Piedmont in the north, allowing a diverse avifauna to prosper within a small geographic area. Ornithologists and birders have actively studied birds within the state for more than a century, but surprisingly, no single reference has provided a complete summary of the status and distribution of the state’s birds until publication of the Birds of Delaware.Review info: Birds of Delaware. By Gene K. Hess, Richard L. West, Maurice V. Barnhill III, and Lorraine M. Fleming, 2000. ISBN: 0-8229-4069-8, 635 pp.
...We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service), have received an application from Catherine M. and Ronald L. Francis (applicants) for a 5-year incidental take permit under the Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended (Act). The application addresses the potential for ``take'' of the Federally endangered Morro shoulderband snail (Helminthoglypta walkeriana) incidental to the construction and occupation of a single-family residence on a legal single-family-zoned parcel in the unincorporated community of Los Osos, San Luis Obispo County, California. The applicants would implement a conservation program to minimize and mitigate project activities as described in their low-effect habitat conservation plan. We invite comments from the public on the application, which includes the Francis Low-Effect Habitat Conservation Plan for the Morro Shoulderband Snail (HCP) that has been determined to be eligible for a Categorical Exclusion under the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969, as amended (NEPA).
...We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service), have received an application from Thomas R. Kellaway and Doris J. Redmon (applicants) for a 5-year incidental take permit under the Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended (Act). The application addresses the potential for ``take'' of the Federally endangered Morro shoulderband snail (Helminthoglypta walkeriana) incidental to the construction and occupation of two single-family residences, one on each of two legal parcels occupied by the species in the community of Los Osos, San Luis Obispo County, California. The applicants would implement a conservation program to minimize and mitigate project activities as described in their low-effect habitat conservation plan (plan). We invite comments from the public on the application, which includes the Kellaway Low-Effect Habitat Conservation Plan for the Morro Shoulderband Snail (HCP), which has been determined to be eligible for a Categorical Exclusion under the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969, as amended (NEPA).
Lammertink, J.M.; Rojas-Tomé, J.A.; Casillas-Orona, F.M.; Otto, R.L.
The pine-oak forests of the Sierra Madre Occidental, a mountain range in NW Mexico, have recently been recognized as an area of high endemism and biodiversity. Selective logging threatens three bird species endemic to this habitat, who depend on standing dead trees (snags). This report is based on
Harrington, Carolyn Lang
Describes a lesson for third-grade students that begins with an examination of bird prints done by John James Audubon and moves into the students creating their own torn paper birds. Introduces the students to the beauty of birds and focuses on the environmental issues that face birds and their habitats. (CMK)
Full Text Available Grasslands host a high diversity of plant and animal species. In Serbia, most alkali grasslands are located in the province of Vojvodina. The majority are not subject to conservation. The aim of the study was to investigate the relationship between the proportion of croplands and (1 the number of breeding species and (2 the number of breeding pairs in the alkali grasslands of the upper Mostonga River catchment basin (NW Serbia. The size of the study area was 400 ha. Birds were surveyed along seven parallel transects eight times per breeding season. Lengths of the cross sections of both grasslands and croplands were measured. The proportion of croplands per transect was calculated by dividing the total length of cross sections of croplands by the total length of transect. The relationship between the proportion of croplands and the number of breeding pairs and the number of breeding species, respectively, was studied using simple linear regression. We recorded a total of 171 nesting pairs belonging to 23 species in the alkali grassland investigated, with breeding densities between 2.2 and 10.3 pairs per 10 ha. The number of species per transect ranged between 6 and 11. The most abundant species were Skylark Alauda arvensis, Yellow Wagtail Motacilla flava and Corn Bunting Emberiza calandra. The numbers of breeding pairs (F6 = 21.761, P < 0.0001 and of breeding species (F6 = 13.758, P = 0.001 were both influenced negatively by the proportion of croplands. These findings highlight the need for coordinated conservation measures on the alkali grasslands of Vojvodina.
John D. Alexander; Jaime L. Stephens; Sam Veloz; Leo Salas; Josée S. Rousseau; C. John Ralph; Daniel A. Sarr
As data about populations of indicator species become available, proactive strategies that improve representation of biological diversity within protected area networks should consider finer-scaled evaluations, especially in regions identified as important through course-scale analyses. We use density distribution models derived from a robust regional bird...
Brenda Dale; Michael Norton; Constance Downes; Brian Collins
One recommendation of the Canadian Landbird Monitoring Strategy of Partners in Flight-Canada is to improve monitoring capability for rapidly declining grassland birds. In Canada, we lack statistical power for many grassland species because they are detected in small numbers, on a low number of routes, or show high year-to-year variability. In developing a Grassland...
Terry W. Johnson
Faced with major financial and manpower restrictions, the Georgia Department of Natural Resources (DNR) Nongame-Endangered Wildlife Program (NGEWP) is aggressively encouraging the private sector to participate in a broad spectrum of innovative neotropical bird-related research, survey, fund raising, management and educational activities. A key element in this...
Andrew J. Hansen; Linda Bowers Phillips; Curtis H. Flather; Jim Robinson-Cox
We evaluated the leading hypotheses on biophysical factors affecting species richness for Breeding Bird Survey routes from areas with little influence of human activities.We then derived a best model based on information theory, and used this model to extrapolate SK across North America based on the biophysical predictor variables. The predictor variables included the...
Gaüzère, Pierre; Princé, Karine; Devictor, Vincent
The spatial tracking of climatic shifts is frequently reported as a biodiversity response to climatic change. However, species' range shifts are often idiosyncratic and inconsistent with climatic shift predictions. At the community scale, this discrepancy can be measured by comparing the spatial shift in the relative composition of cold- vs. warm-adapted species in a local assemblage [the community temperature index (CTI)] with the spatial shift in temperature isotherms. While the local distribution of climate change velocity is a promising approach to downscaling climate change pressure and responses, CTI velocity has only been investigated on a continental or national scale. In this study, we coupled French Breeding Bird Survey data, collected from 2133 sites monitored between 2001 and 2012, with climatic data in order to estimate the local magnitude and direction of breeding season temperature shift, CTI shift, and their spatiotemporal divergence - the local climatic debt. We also tested whether landscape characteristics that are known to affect climate velocity and spatial tracking of climate change mediated the climatic debt on the local scale. We found a clear spatial structure, together with heterogeneity in both temperature and CTI spatial shifts. Local climatic debt decreased as the elevation, habitat diversity, and the naturalness of the landscape increased. These results suggest the complementary effects of the local topographic patterns sheltering more diverse microclimates and the increasing permeability of natural and diversified landscape. Our findings suggest that a more nuanced evaluation of spatial variability in climatic and biotic shifts is necessary in order to properly describe biodiversity responses to climate change rather than the oversimplified descriptions of uniform poleward shifts. © 2016 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.
Mairota, P.; Buckley, P.; Suchomel, C.; Heinsoo, K.; Verheyen, K.; Hédl, Radim; Terzuolo, P. G.; Sindaco, R.; Carpanelli, A.
Roč. 9, AUG 2016 (2016), s. 560-568 ISSN 1971-7458 Institutional support: RVO:67985939 Keywords : biodiversity * habitats directive * forest habitat types Subject RIV: GK - Forestry Impact factor: 1.623, year: 2016
The important bird areas (IBA) concept provides a practical index of the diversity and condition of an ecosystem on a site-by-site basis using birds as indicators. It is believed that protecting and managing such sites will result in the conservation of some of the most sensitive, fragile and ecologically rich habitats in the world.
Adrian S. Di Giacomo; Alejandro G. Di Giacomo; Julio R. Contreras
It is clear that grassland bird populations have declined significantly during the last 30 years. Declines are widespread in North America, making grassland birds a continental conservation priority. In New England and New York steep population declines for many species warranted listing in many states. Habitat loss through farm abandonment and the subsequent...
Full Text Available The Himalayan musk deer (Moschus chrysogaster is a cervid distributed from the eastern to the western Himalayas of Nepal. The species is listed as endangered in appendix I of IUCN Red data, and protected in Nepal under the National Parks and Wildlife Conservation Act of 1973. Musk deer occupy the middle to the higher mountain regions, which cover 12 protected areas of Nepal (6 national parks, 5 conservation areas, 1 hunting reserve. However, of the 30177.19 km2 potential habitat, only 19.26% (5815.08 km2 is inside the protected areas and the remaining 80.73% falls outside the protected areas. Consequently, poaching, habitat destruction, livestock grazing and forest fire in the musk deer habitat are important challenges for the conservation of musk deer in the country. A thorough status survey in and outside the protected areas should be carried out and a species-focused conservation action plan should be prepared and implemented properly. A program for increasing awareness and enhancing livelihood of the local populations be launched in the poor and poaching risk zones of Nepal.
Hammers, M.; Muskens, G.J.D.M.; Kats, van R.J.M.; Teunissen, W.A.; Kleijn, D.
In the past decades, large-scale conservation programs have been implemented to halt the decline of farmland species. The mechanisms explaining the effectiveness of these programs remain poorly understood. Here we test the recent hypothesis that the effects of conservation management are determined
Deas, Marilyn; Andréfouët, Serge; Léopold, Marc; Guillemot, Nicolas
Numerous threats impact coral reefs and conservation actions are urgently needed. Fast production of marine habitat maps promotes the use of habitat-only conservation plans, where a given percentage of the area of each habitat is set as conservation objectives. However, marine reserves can impact access to fishing grounds and generate opportunity costs for fishers that need to be minimized. In New Caledonia (Southwest Pacific), we used fine-scale fishery catch maps to define nineteen opportunity costs layers (expressed as biomass catch loss) considering i) total catches, ii) target fish families, iii) local marine tenure, and iv) gear type. The expected lower impacts on fishery catch when using the different cost constraints were ranked according to effectiveness in decreasing the costs generated by the habitat-only scenarios. The exercise was done for two habitat maps with different thematic richness. In most cases, habitat conservation objectives remained achievable, but effectiveness varied widely between scenarios and between habitat maps. The results provide practical guidelines for coral reef conservation and management. Habitat-only scenarios can be used to initiate conservation projects with stakeholders but the costs induced by such scenarios can be lowered by up to 50-60% when detailed exhaustive fishery data are used. When using partial data, the gain would be only in the 15-25% range. The best compromises are achieved when using local data.
Tryjanowski, P.; Hartel, T.; Báldi, A.; Szymański, P.; Tobolka, M.; Herzon, I.; Goławski, A.; Konvička, Martin; Hromada, M.; Jerzak, L.; Kujawa, K.; Lenda, M.; Orłowski, G.; Panek, M.; Skórka, P.; Sparks, T. H.; Tworek, S.; Wuczyński, A.; Zmihorski, M.
Roč. 46, č. 1 (2011), s. 1-12 ISSN 0001-6454 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z50070508 Keywords : landscape ecology * habitat * matrix Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour Impact factor: 1.229, year: 2011
López-Sepulcre, Andrés; Kokko, Hanna; Norris, Ken
Individual preferences for good habitat are often thought to have a beneficial stabilizing effect for populations. However, if individuals preferentially compete for better-quality territories, these may become hotspots of conflict. We show that, in an endangered species, this process decreases the productivity of favoured territories to the extent that differences in productivity between territories disappear. Unlike predictions from current demographic theory on site-dependent population regulation (ideal despotic distribution), we show that population productivity is reduced if resources are distributed unevenly in space. Competition for high-quality habitat can thus have detrimental consequences for populations even though it benefits individuals. Manipulating conflict (e.g. by reducing variation in habitat quality) can therefore prove an effective conservation measure in species with strong social or territorial conflict. PMID:20534612
Lehikoinen, Petteri; Lehikoinen, Aleksi; Mikkola-Roos, Markku; Jaatinen, Kim
Human actions have led to loss and degradation of wetlands, impairing their suitability as habitat especially for waterbirds. Such negative effects may be mitigated through habitat management. To date scientific evidence regarding the impacts of these actions remains scarce. We studied guild specific abundances of breeding and staging birds in response to habitat management on 15 Finnish wetlands. In this study management actions comprised several means of vegetation removal to thwart overgrowth. Management cost efficiency was assessed by examining the association between site-specific costs and bird abundances. Several bird guilds exhibited positive connections with both habitat management as well as with invested funds. Most importantly, however, red-listed species and species with special conservation concern as outlined by the EU showed positive correlations with management actions, underlining the conservation value of wetland management. The results suggest that grazing was especially efficient in restoring overgrown wetlands. As a whole this study makes it clear that wetland habitat management constitutes a feasible conservation tool. The marked association between invested funds and bird abundance may prove to be a valuable tool for decision makers when balancing costs and impact of conservation measures against one another.
Matthew J. McCarthy
Full Text Available Habitat mapping can be accomplished using many techniques and types of data. There are pros and cons for each technique and dataset, therefore, the goal of this project was to investigate the capabilities of new satellite sensor technology and to assess map accuracy for a variety of image classification techniques based on hundreds of field-work sites. The study area was Masonboro Island, an undeveloped area in coastal North Carolina, USA. Using the best map results, a habitat change assessment was conducted between 2002 and 2010. WorldView-2, QuickBird, and IKONOS satellite sensors were tested using unsupervised and supervised methods using a variety of spectral band combinations. Light Detection and Ranging (LiDAR elevation and texture data pan-sharpening, and spatial filtering were also tested. In total, 200 maps were generated and results indicated that WorldView-2 was consistently more accurate than QuickBird and IKONOS. Supervised maps were more accurate than unsupervised in 80% of the maps. Pan-sharpening the images did not consistently improve map accuracy but using a majority filter generally increased map accuracy. During the relatively short eight-year period, 20% of the coastal study area changed with intertidal marsh experiencing the most change. Smaller habitat classes changed substantially as well. For example, 84% of upland scrub-shrub experienced change. These results document the dynamic nature of coastal habitats, validate the use of the relatively new Worldview-2 sensor, and may be used to guide future coastal habitat mapping.
Woodall, Lucy C; Otero-Ferrer, Francisco; Correia, Miguel; Curtis, Janelle M R; Garrick-Maidment, Neil; Shaw, Paul W; Koldewey, Heather J
Accurate taxonomy, population demography, and habitat descriptors inform species threat assessments and the design of effective conservation measures. Here we combine published studies with new genetic, morphological and habitat data that were collected from seahorse populations located along the European and North African coastlines to help inform management decisions for European seahorses. This study confirms the presence of only two native seahorse species ( Hippocampus guttulatus and H. hippocampus ) across Europe, with sporadic occurrence of non-native seahorse species in European waters. For the two native species, our findings demonstrate that highly variable morphological characteristics, such as size and presence or number of cirri, are unreliable for distinguishing species. Both species exhibit sex dimorphism with females being significantly larger. Across its range, H. guttulatus were larger and found at higher densities in cooler waters, and individuals in the Black Sea were significantly smaller than in other populations. H. hippocampus were significantly larger in Senegal. Hippocampus guttulatus tends to have higher density populations than H. hippocampus when they occur sympatrically. Although these species are often associated with seagrass beds, data show both species inhabit a wide variety of shallow habitats and use a mixture of holdfasts. We suggest an international mosaic of protected areas focused on multiple habitat types as the first step to successful assessment, monitoring and conservation management of these Data Deficient species.
Schalk Willem Petrus de Waal
Full Text Available Surveys were conducted along the eastern Dhofar coast of Oman to investigate densities and habitat preferences of juvenile Haliotis mariae ( 50 cm Ø, respectively. B values were highest for urchins (6 times that for small boulders, and for boulders <50 cm Ø. B values for boulder habitats decreased as boulder size increased. Urchin utilisation by juvenile abalone as shelter ranged between geographic areas from a minimum of 15.5% to a maximum of 47.6%. The proportion of total habitat that is preferred by more than 97% of juvenile abalone found, including urchins and boulders < 50 cm Ø, comprises 29% of surveyed substratum. While the role urchins play on wild juvenile H. mariae has not proved vital, it is definitely significant. Although juvenile densities are low and are not currently limited by the availability of suitable habitat, it is crucial to identify and conserve those microhabitats that support recruitment of H. mariae. The abundance of these areas should be among the criteria used in selecting protected conservation areas.
Runhaar, H.A.C.|info:eu-repo/dai/nl/141942673; Polmans, Nico
In order to reverse the trend of continuous decline in species diversity and abundance in agricultural landscapes, various governance arrangements have been implemented that promote, organise and finance nature conservation by farmers. The scientific literature predominantly focuses on
Runhaar, Hens; Polman, N.B.P.
In order to reverse the trend of continuous decline in species diversity and abundance in agricultural landscapes, various governance arrangements have been implemented that promote, organise and finance nature conservation
by farmers. The scientific literature predominantly focuses on
Open-Habitat Birds in Recently Burned Areas: the Role of the Fire Extent and Species’ Habitat Breadth = Aves de medios abiertos en áreas quemadas recientemente: la importancia de la extensión del fuego y la amplitud de hábitat de las especies
Pons Ferran, Pere; Bas Lay, Josep Maria
To evaluate the occurrence of open-habitat and steppe-land bird species in Western Mediterranean burned areas and to assess the role of the extent and location of the fire on species richness and composition. At the species level, the relationship was explored between habitat breadth, distribution extent and the ability to occupy recently burned areas. Location: Iberia and Southern France Methods: Fieldwork and bibliography were assembled to obtain breeding bird inventories for 21 burned area...
...) to be mounted on animals and tracked by the French-U.S., Argos satellite system. The program was designed to provide a capability that could track migratory birds and other widely ranging species anywhere on Earth...
... (Brachyramphus marmoratus) habitat protection; and the IA would be amended to include a new clause and a new... murrelet habitat map, and the addition of a severability and savings clause. Anticipated Effects of... categorical exclusion under NEPA as provided by the Department of the Interior Manual (516 DM 2 Appendix 2 and...
Michael A. Larson; Frank R., III Thompson; Joshua J. Millspaugh; William D. Dijak; Stephen R. Shifley
Methods for habitat modeling based on landscape simulations and population viability modeling based on habitat quality are well developed, but no published study of which we are aware has effectively joined them in a single, comprehensive analysis. We demonstrate the application of a population viability model for ovenbirds (Seiurus aurocapillus)...
Karla Pelz Serrano; Eduardo Ponce Guevara; Carlos A. Lopez Gonzalez
The status of beaver (Castor canadensis) in northeastern Sonora, Mexico, is uncertain. We surveyed the Cajon Bonito River to assess the beaverâs status and habitat and found five colonies. Limiting factors appear to be pollution due to animal waste, deforestation of riparian trees, and human exploitation. Beavers did not appear to require habitat...
Steven W. Buskirk
Habitat fragmentation and interspecific competition are two important forces that potentially affect lynx populations. Fragmentation operates by various mechanisms, including direct habitat loss, vehicle collisions and behavioral disturbance from roads, and changes in landscape features such as edges. Competition takes two forms: Exploitation competition involves...
Reshitnyk, Luba Yvanka
The ability to map nearshore habitat (i.e. submerged aquatic vegetation) is an integral component of marine conservation. The main goal of this thesis was to examine the ability of high resolution, multispectral satellite imagery and a single-beam acoustic ground discrimination system to map the location of marine habitats in Bag Harbour, found in the Gwaii Haanas National Marine Conservation Area Reserve. To meet this goal, two objectives were addressed: (1) Using the QTC View V sing-beam acoustic ground discrimination system, identify which frequency (50 kHz or 200 kHz) is best suited for mapping marine habitat; (2) evaluate the ability to map nearshore marine habitat using WorldView-2 high resolution, multispectral satellite imagery and compare the results of marine habitat maps derived from the acoustic and satellite datasets. Ground-truth data for both acoustic and satellite data were collected via towed underwater video camera on June 3rd and 4th, 2012. Acoustic data (50 and 200 kHz) were collected on June 23rd and 24 th, 2012, respectively. The results of this study are organized into two papers. The first paper focuses on objective 1 where the QTC View V single-beam acoustic ground discrimination system was used to map nearshore habitat at a site within the Gwaii Haanas National Marine Conservation Area using two survey frequencies -- 50 kHz and 200 kHz. The results show that the 200 kHz data outperformed the 50 kHz data set in both thematic and spatial accuracy. The 200 kHz dataset was able to identify two species of submerged aquatic vegetation, eelgrass ( Zostera marina) and a red algae (Chondrocanthus exasperatus ) while the 50 kHz dataset was only able to detect the distribution of eelgrass. The best overall accuracy achieved with the 200 kHz dataset was 86% for a habitat map with three classes (dense eelgrass, dense red algae and unvegetated substrate) compared to the 50 kHz habitat classification with two classes (dense eelgrass and unvegetated
Full Text Available Red Lists of threatened species play a critical role in conservation science and practice. However, policy-making based on Red Lists ignores ecological and evolutionary consequences of losing biodiversity because these lists focus on species alone. To decide if relying on Red Lists alone can help to conserve communities' functional (FD and phylogenetic (PD diversity, it is useful to evaluate whether Red List categories represent species with diverse ecological traits and evolutionary histories. Additionally, local scale analyses using regional Red Lists should represent more realistic pools of co-occurring species and thereby better capture eventual losses of FD and PD. Here, we used 21 life-history traits and a phylogeny for all Brazilian birds to determine whether species assigned under the IUCN global Red List, the Brazilian national, and regional Red Lists capture more FD and PD than expected by chance. We also built local Red Lists and analysed if they capture more FD and PD at the local scale. Further, we investigated whether individual threat categories have species with greater FD and PD than expected by chance. At any given scale, threat categories did not capture greater FD or PD than expected by chance. Indeed, mostly categories captured equal or less FD or PD than expected by chance. These findings would not have great consequences if Red Lists were not often considered as a major decision support tool for policy-making. Our results challenge the practice of investing conservation resources based only on species Red Lists because, from an ecological and evolutionary point of view, this would be the same as protecting similar or random sets of species. Thus, new prioritization methods, such as the EDGE of Existence initiative, should be developed and applied to conserve species' ecological traits and evolutionary histories at different spatial scales.
Linda Bowers Phillips; Andrew J. Hansen; Curtis H. Flather; Jim Robinson-Cox
Ecosystem energy is now recognized as a primary correlate and potential driver of global patterns of species richness. The increasingly well-tested species-energy relationship is now ripe for application to conservation, and recent advances in satellite technology make this more feasible. While the correlates for the species-energy relationship have been addressed many...
Roger W. Perry; T. Bently Wigley; M. Anthony Melchiors; Ronald E. Thill; Philip A. Tappe; Darren A. Miller
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...
Lundhede, Thomas; Jacobsen, Jette Bredahl; Hanley, Nick
heavily on public funding and hence on public support. Our results suggest that cross-country coordination of conservation efforts under climate change will be challenging in terms of achieving an appropriate balance between cost-effectiveness in adaptation and the concerns of a general public who seem...... mostly worried about protecting currently-native species....
Sogge, Mark K.; Marshall, Robert M.; Finch, Deborah M.; Stoleson, Scott H.
The distribution and abundance of a species across a landscape depends, in part, on the distribution and abundance of appropriate habitat. If basic resource needs such as food, water, and cover are not present, then that species is excluded from the area. Scarcity of appropriate habitat is generally the key reason for the status of most rare and endangered species. An understanding of an endangered species’ habitat characteristics is crucial to effective management, conservation and recovery.
... habitat, without the ``fear'' sometimes associated with government regulation. Management protocols have... improvements resulted from what has been learned through adaptive management. This HCP has been lauded as an...
Wetlands are exceptionally productive landscape features that provide critical habitat for endemic species, threatened/endangered and migratory animals, store floodwaters and maintain baseflows in stream systems, recharge groundwaters, and biogeochemically and physically affect n...
.... FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Scott Carlon, NMFS (503) 231-2379. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION... habitat modification or degradation where it actually kills or injures fish or wildlife by significantly impairing essential behavioral patterns, including breeding, feeding, spawning, migrating, rearing, and...
Sharps, Katrina; Henderson, Ian; Conway, Greg; Armour-Chelu, Neal; Dolman, Paul
In Europe, the consequences of commercial plantation management for birds of conservation concern are poorly understood. The European Nightjar Caprimulgus europaeus is a species of conservation concern across Europe due to population depletion through habitat loss. Pine plantation-forest is now a key Nightjar nesting habitat, particularly in northwestern Europe, and increased understanding of foraging habitat selection is required. We radiotracked 31 Nightjars in an extensive (185-km2) comple...
Fellers, G.M.; Kleeman, P.M.
Nonbreeding habitats are critically important for Rana draytonii, especially for individuals that breed in temporary bodies of water. We radiotracked 123 frogs to evaluate seasonal habitat use. Individual frogs were continuously tracked for up to 16 months. Some individuals remained at breeding ponds all year, but 66% of female and 25% of male frogs moved to nonbreeding areas, even when the breeding site retained water. Frogs at our main study site moved 150 m (median), roughly the distance to the nearest suitable nonbreeding area. The greatest straight-line distance traveled was 1.4 km, although the presumed distance traveled was 2.8 km. Females were more likely than males to move from permanent ponds (38% of females, 16% of males), but among dispersing frogs, males and females did not differ in distance moved. Some frogs left breeding sites shortly after oviposition (median = 12 days for females, 42.5 days for males), but many individuals remained until the site was nearly dry. Fog provided moisture for dispersal or migration throughout the summer. Our data demonstrate that maintaining populations of pond-breeding amphibians requires that all essential habitat components be protected; these include (1) breeding habitat, (2) nonbreeding habitat, and (3) migration corridors. In addition, a buffer is needed around all three areas to ensure that outside activities do not degrade any of the three habitat components. Copyright 2007 Society for the Study of Amphibians and Reptiles.
Full Text Available African manatees (Trichechus senegalensis and crocodiles are threatened species in parts of their range. In West Africa, crocodiles may constitute the main predators for manatees apart from humans. Here, we explore the macro-habitat selection of manatees and two species of crocodiles (West African crocodiles Crocodylus suchus and dwarf crocodile Osteolaemus tetraspis in the Niger Delta (Nigeria, testing the hypotheses that (i manatees may avoid crocodiles in order to minimize risks of predation, and (ii the two crocodile species do compete. The study was carried out between 1994 and 2010 with a suite of different field techniques. We observed that the main macro-habitat types were freshwater rivers and coastal lagoons for manatees, mangroves for West African crocodiles, and rivers and creeks for dwarf crocodiles, with (i the three species differing significantly in terms of their macro-habitat type selection, and (ii significant seasonal influence on habitat selection of each species. Null models for niche overlap showed a significantly lower overlap in macro-habitat type use between manatee and crocodiles, whereas the two crocodiles were relatively similar. Null model analyses did not indicate any competitive interactions between crocodiles. On the other hand, manatees avoided macro-habitats where crocodiles, and especially West African crocodiles, are abundant.
Reynolds, Mark D; Sullivan, Brian L; Hallstein, Eric; Matsumoto, Sandra; Kelling, Steve; Merrifield, Matthew; Fink, Daniel; Johnston, Alison; Hochachka, Wesley M; Bruns, Nicholas E; Reiter, Matthew E; Veloz, Sam; Hickey, Catherine; Elliott, Nathan; Martin, Leslie; Fitzpatrick, John W; Spraycar, Paul; Golet, Gregory H; McColl, Christopher; Morrison, Scott A
In an era of unprecedented and rapid global change, dynamic conservation strategies that tailor the delivery of habitat to when and where it is most needed can be critical for the persistence of species, especially those with diverse and dispersed habitat requirements. We demonstrate the effectiveness of such a strategy for migratory waterbirds. We analyzed citizen science and satellite data to develop predictive models of bird populations and the availability of wetlands, which we used to determine temporal and spatial gaps in habitat during a vital stage of the annual migration. We then filled those gaps using a reverse auction marketplace to incent qualifying landowners to create temporary wetlands on their properties. This approach is a cost-effective way of adaptively meeting habitat needs for migratory species, optimizes conservation outcomes relative to investment, and can be applied broadly to other conservation challenges.
... wildlife species. Incidental take is defined as take that is incidental to, and not the purpose of... Species spends a large part of the year at sea. Adults generally return to their colonial nesting grounds.... Fledglings (i.e., young birds learning how to fly) travel from the nesting colony to the sea in the fall...
Frank R., III Thompson; Christine A. Ribic
Conservation and management of passerines has largely focused on habitat manipulation or restoration because the natural communities on which these birds depend have been destroyed and fragmented. However, productivity is another important aspect of avian conservation, and nest predation can be a large source of nesting mortality for passerines. Recent studies using...
Full Text Available Dramatic population declines among species of pelagic shark as a result of overfishing have been reported, with some species now at a fraction of their historical biomass. Advanced telemetry techniques enable tracking of spatial dynamics and behaviour, providing fundamental information on habitat preferences of threatened species to aid conservation. We tracked movements of the highest pelagic fisheries by-catch species, the blue shark Prionace glauca, in the North-east Atlantic using pop-off satellite-linked archival tags to determine the degree of space use linked to habitat and to examine vertical niche. Overall, blue sharks moved south-west of tagging sites (English Channel; southern Portugal, exhibiting pronounced site fidelity correlated with localized productive frontal areas, with estimated space-use patterns being significantly different from that of random walks. Tracked female sharks displayed behavioural variability in diel depth preferences, both within and between individuals. Diel depth use ranged from normal DVM (nDVM; dawn descent, dusk ascent, to reverse DVM (rDVM; dawn ascent, dusk descent, to behavioural patterns where no diel differences were apparent. Results showed that blue sharks occupy some of the most productive marine zones for extended periods and structure diel activity patterns across multiple spatio-temporal scales in response to particular habitat types. In so doing, sharks occupied an extraordinarily broad vertical depth range for their size (1.0-2.0 m fork length, from the surface into the bathypelagic realm (max. dive depth, 1160 m. The space-use patterns of blue sharks indicated they spend much of the time in areas where pelagic longlining activities are often highest, and in depth zones where these fisheries particularly target other species, which could account for the rapid declines recently reported for blue sharks in many parts of the world's oceans. Our results provide habitat targets for blue shark
Morrison, S.A.; Sillett, T. Scott; Ghalambor, Cameron K.; Fitzpatrick, J.W.; Graber, D.M.; Bakker, V.J.; Bowman, R.; Collins, C.T.; Collins, P.W.; Delaney, K.S.; Doak, D.F.; Koenig, Walter D.; Laughrin, L.; Lieberman, A.A.; Marzluff, J.M.; Reynolds, M.D.; Scott, J.M.; Stallcup, J.A.; Vickers, W.; Boyce, W.M.
Biodiversity conservation in an era of global change and scarce funding benefits from approaches that simultaneously solve multiple problems. Here, we discuss conservation management of the island scrub-jay (Aphelocoma insularis), the only island-endemic passerine species in the continental United States, which is currently restricted to 250-square-kilometer Santa Cruz Island, California. Although the species is not listed as threatened by state or federal agencies, its viability is nonetheless threatened on multiple fronts. We discuss management actions that could reduce extinction risk, including vaccination, captive propagation, biosecurity measures, and establishing a second free-living population on a neighboring island. Establishing a second population on Santa Rosa Island may have the added benefit of accelerating the restoration and enhancing the resilience of that island's currently highly degraded ecosystem. The proactive management framework for island scrub-jays presented here illustrates how strategies for species protection, ecosystem restoration, and adaptation to and mitigation of climate change can converge into an integrated solution. ?? 2011 by American Institute of Biological Sciences. All rights reserved.
Wetlands are among the most productive ecosystems in the world which support critical ecological services and high biological diversity yet are vulnerable to climate change and human activities. In this thesis, I investigated the capabilities of satellite remote sensing with medium spatial resolution and object-based image analysis (OBIA) methods to elucidate seasonal composition and dynamics of wetland ecosystems and indicators of habitat for wintering waterbirds in a large conservation hotspot of Poyang Lake, PR China. I first examined changes in major wetland cover types during the low water period when Poyang Lake provides habitat to large numbers of migratory birds from the East Asian pathway. I used OBIA to map and analyze the transitions among water, vegetation, mudflat and sand classes from four 32-m Beijing-1 microsatellite images between late fall 2007 and early spring 2008. This analysis revealed that, while transitions among wetland classes were strongly associated with precipitation and flood-driven hydrological variation, the overall dynamics were a more complex interplay of vegetation phenology, disturbance and post-flood exposure. Remote sensing signals of environmental processes were more effectively captured by changes in fuzzy memberships to each class per location than by changes in spatial extents of the best-matching classes alone. The highest uncertainty in the image analysis corresponded to transitional wetland states at the end of the major flood recession in November and to heterogeneous mudflat areas at the land-water interface during the whole study period. Results suggest seasonally exposed mudflat features as important targets for future research due to heterogeneity and uncertainty of their composition, variable spatial distribution and sensitivity to hydrological dynamics. I further explored the potential of OBIA to overcome the limitations of the traditional pixel-based image classification methods in characterizing Poyang Lake
Sérgio Henrique Borges
Full Text Available We inventoried the birds from Serra do Aracá region, state of Amazonas. The region encompasses a high diversity of vegetation types, including white sand forests and campinas, terra firme and flooded forests, montane forests and tepuis. We recorded 416 bird taxa in 69 families through captures with mist nets, tape recording of bird voices, and collection of voucher specimens. A large proportion of them (61% were recorded in a single vegetation type. Qualitative estimates suggest that approximately 580 bird species occur in the region. The avifauna of the Aracá region has a mixed biogeographic composition, with species typical of both margins of the Rio Negro occurring sympatrically. Additionally, species whose distributions are restricted to three areas of endemism for Amazonian birds (Imeri, Guiana and Pantepui were recorded in the region. Rare landscapes in the Brazilian Amazon are found in the Serra do Aracá region. Additionally, we recorded endemic and rare birds, highlighting the value of the region for conservation. The Serra do Aracá State Park officially protects montane forests, terra firme forests and tepuis. We suggest that the large extension of white sand campinas and igapó forests at the southern portion of Serra do Aracá should be also preserved in order to improve the representation of the rich natural heritage of the region.
Halstead, B.J.; Wylie, G.D.; Casazza, Michael L.
Resource managers often have little information regarding the habitat requirements and distribution of rare species. Factor analysis-based habitat suitability models describe the ecological niche of a species and identify locations where these conditions occur on the landscape using existing occurrence data. We used factor analyses to assess the suitability of habitats for Thamnophis gigas (Giant Gartersnake), a rare, threatened species endemic to the Central Valley of California, USA, and to map the locations of habitat suitable for T. gigas in the Sacramento Valley. Factor analyses indicated that the niche of T. gigas is composed of sites near rice agriculture with low stream densities. Sites with high canal densities and near wetlands also appeared suitable, but results for these variables were sensitive to potential sampling bias. In the Sacramento Valley, suitable habitats occur primarily in the central portion of the valley floor. Based upon the results of the factor analyses, recovery planning for T. gigas will require an on-the-ground assessment of the current distribution and abundance of T. gigas, maintaining the few remaining natural wetlands and the practice of rice agriculture in the Sacramento Valley, and studying the effects of agricultural practices and land use changes on populations of T. gigas. ?? 2010 by the American Society of Ichthyologists and Herpetologists.
Pavlíková, A.; Konvička, Martin
Roč. 16, č. 2 (2012), s. 187-206 ISSN 1366-638X R&D Projects: GA ČR GAP505/10/2167; GA MŽP SP/2D3/62/08; GA MŠk LC06073 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z50070508 Keywords : conservation * distribution ranges * habitat components Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour Impact factor: 1.801, year: 2012 http://www.springerlink.com/content/r73622084m24r2x1/
Lance Craighead; Baden Cross
To identify the remaining areas of the Interior Cedar- Hemlock Forest of North America and prioritize them for conservation planning, the Craighead Environmental Research Institute has developed a 2-scale method for mapping critical habitat utilizing 1) a broad-scale model to identify important regional locations as the basis for a Conservation Area Design (CAD), and 2...
Full Text Available Para las aves, ambientes salobres como los marinos y los salares, son en la práctica hábitats secos. Cuando las aves beben agua o consumen presas saladas, sus fluidos corporales aumentan la osmolaridad. Para mantener el equilibrio osmótico, las aves tienen que eliminar el exceso de electrolitos ingerido en los alimentos y el agua. Las estrategias adaptativas utilizadas por las aves marinas incluyen la utilización de la glándula de la sal, la cual produce soluciones de excreción más concentradas que el agua de mar. Tanto la fisiología y la plasticidad de la glándula nasal se correlaciona con las características ecológicas de las especies. Además, las aves pueden minimizar el estrés osmótico escogiendo presas hipo-osmóticas, o con menor contenido de agua, disminuyendo de este modo la ingestión de sales. Aun cuando la capacidad de concentración de la orina del riñón de aves es limitada, existen diferencias interespecíficas en su estructura y fisiología, lo que representa un mecanismo adaptativo para evitar la pérdida de agua. Este órgano es particularmente importante en aquellos taxa que no poseen la glándula de la sal, como paseriformes. Sin embargo, estas aves que aparentemente poseerían una restricción fisiológica para explotar ambientes salobres, incluyen algunas especies que habitan costas oceánicas y de salares. En esta revisión muestro que la interacción funcional del riñón y el intestino grueso en la fisiología osmoregulatoria, junto con la conducta de alimentación juegan un papel crucial en la mantención del balance hídrico y en la adaptación de estas especies a ambientes salobresFor birds, saline environments such as maritime and salt marsh habitats are essentially dry habitats. When birds drink saline water or consume salt-loaded preys, the osmolarity of their body fluids increases. In order to maintain the osmotic equilibrium, they have to eliminate the excess of electrolytes ingested with preys or
Benjamin Skolnik; David Wiedenfeld; Randy Dettmers; Constantino Aucca; Lina Daza; Heidy Valle; Francisco Sornoza; Javier Robayo; David Diaz; Jane Fitzgerald; Daniel Lebbin; Paul B. Hamel
Vital to the work of the Cerulean Warbler Technical Group has been the collaboration among members to evaluate population status and coordinate planning for future activities, principally in conservation implementation. Two plans have been produced, one a general strategy for the conservation and management of the species over its entire range, and a more restricted...
... has prepared an Implementing Agreement (IA) to document the responsibilities of the parties. The USFWS... assurances under the Service's No Surprises policy, as codified at 50 CFR 17.22(b)(5). Buckeye Wind proposes... protected by a conservation easement held by a third-party conservation organization. Section 6.3 of the HCP...
Platteeuw, M.; Foppen, R.P.B.; Eerden, van M.R.
All over Europe, wetlands have decreased in size, lost their original dynamics and became fragmented as the consequence of an ever increasing human land use. These processes have resulted in losses of nature values, among which declines in marshland bird populations. Ecological restoration of
JoAnn M. Hanowski; Gerald J. Niemi
We established bird monitoring programs in two regions of Minnesota: the Chippewa National Forest and the Superior National Forest. The experimental design defined forest cover types as strata in which samples of forest stands were randomly selected. Subsamples (3 point counts) were placed in each stand to maximize field effort and to assess within-stand and between-...
Koen, J H; Crowe, T M
Effects of forest plant species composition and physiognomy on bird and invertebrate communities were investigated in three discrete, relatively undisturbed forest types along a dry-wet soil moisture gradient. Using discriminant function analysis, a 100% floristic and a 78% vegetation structural discrimination were obtained between the three forest types. However, the bird communities of these different forest types were very similar in species composition, and had much lower densities than those normally encountered in other, superficially similar forests. Although an 81% discrimination between forest types was attained through analysis of ground surface invertebrates, measures of litter and aerial invertebrate abundance were also of limited use as discriminators. Historical and biogeographic factors, as well as the low nutritional levels in the soil and vegetation may be the causes of low bird and invertebrate density and diversity. It is concluded that floristics and vegetation structure have, at best, a minor influence on bird community structure, and possibly also on invertebrate community structure in the Knysna Forest.
Luke L. Powell; Gustavo Zurita; Jared D. Wolfe; Erik I. Johnson; Philip C Stouffer
Primary tropical rain forests are being rapidly perforated with new edges via roads, logging, and pastures, and vast areas of secondary forest accumulate following abandonment of agricultural lands. To determine how insectivorous Amazonian understory birds respond to edges between primary rain forest and three age classes of secondary forest, we radio-tracked two...
Glemnitz, Michael; Zander, Peter; Stachow, Ulrich
The environmental impacts of land use vary regionally. Differences in geomorphology, climate, landscape structure, and biotope inventories are regarded as the main causes of this variation. We present a methodological approach for identifying regional responses in land use type to large-scale changes and the implications for the provision of habitat for farmland birds. The methodological innovations of this approach are (i) the coupling of impact assessments with economic models, (ii) the linking of cropping techniques at the plot scale with the regional distribution of land use, and (iii) the integration of statistical or monitoring data on recent states. This approach allows for the regional differentiation of farmers' responses to changing external conditions and for matching the ecological impacts of land use changes with regional environmental sensitivities. An exemplary scenario analysis was applied for a case study of an area in Germany, assessing the impacts of increased irrigation and the promotion of energy cropping on farmland birds, evaluated as a core indicator for farmland biodiversity. The potential effects on farmland birds were analyzed based on the intrinsic habitat values of the crops and cropping techniques. The results revealed that the strongest decrease in habitat availability for farmland birds occurred in regions with medium-to-low agricultural yields. As a result of the limited cropping alternatives, the increase in maize production was highest in marginal regions for both examined scenarios. Maize production replaced many crops with good-to-medium habitat suitability for birds. The declines in habitat quality were strongest in regions that are not in focus for conservation efforts for farmland birds.
Breeze, T D; Bailey, A P; Balcombe, K G; Potts, S G
Pollination services provided by insects play a key role in English crop production and wider ecology. Despite growing evidence of the negative effects of habitat loss on pollinator populations, limited policy support is available to reverse this pressure. One measure that may provide beneficial habitat to pollinators is England's entry level stewardship agri-environment scheme. This study uses a novel expert survey to develop weights for a range of models which adjust the balance of Entry Level Stewardship options within the current area of spending. The annual costs of establishing and maintaining these option compositions were estimated at £59.3-£12.4 M above current expenditure. Although this produced substantial reduction in private cost:benefit ratios, the benefits of the scheme to pollinator habitat rose by 7-140 %; significantly increasing the public cost:benefit ratio. This study demonstrates that the scheme has significant untapped potential to provide good quality habitat for pollinators across England, even within existing expenditure. The findings should open debate on the costs and benefits of specific entry level stewardship management options and how these can be enhanced to benefit both participants and biodiversity more equitably.
Opdam, P.F.M.; Wascher, D.M.
Climate change and habitat fragmentation are considered key pressures on biodiversity. In this paper we explore the potential synergetic effects between these factors. We argue that processes at two levels of spatial scale interact: the metapopulation level and the species range level. Current
Anna M Mangan
Full Text Available As the largest terrestrial biomes, crop and pasturelands can have very large positive or negative impacts on biodiversity and human well-being. Understanding how animals use and impact agroecosystems is important for making informed decisions that achieve conservation and production outcomes. Yet, few studies examine the tradeoffs associated with wildlife in agricultural systems. We examined bird use of organic apple orchards as well as how birds influence fruit production positively through control of an economically important insect pest (codling moth (Cydia pomonella and negatively through fruit damage. We conducted transect surveys, observed bird frugivory and assessed bird and insect damage with an exclosure experiment in small organic farms in western Colorado. We found that organic apple orchards in this region provide habitat for a large number of both human-adapted and human-sensitive species and that the species in orchards were relatively similar to adjacent hedgerow habitats. Habitat use did not vary as a function of orchard characteristics, and apple damage by both birds and C. pomonella was consistent within and across apple blocks that varied in size. A small subset of bird species was observed foraging on apples yet the effect of birds as agents of fruit damage appeared rather minor and birds did not reduce C. pomonella damage. Our results demonstrate that organic apple orchards have the potential to provide habitat for diverse bird communities, including species typically sensitive to human activities, with little apparent effect on production.
Phillimore, A B; Owens, I P F; Black, R A; Chittock, J; Burke, T; Clegg, S M
Substantial phenotypic and genetic variation is often found below the species level and this may be useful in quantifying biodiversity and predicting future diversification. However, relatively few studies have tested whether different aspects of intraspecific variation show congruent patterns across populations. Here, we quantify several aspects of divergence between 13 insular populations of an island endemic bird, the Vanuatu white-eye (Zosterops flavifrons). The components of divergence studied are mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA), nuclear DNA microsatellites and morphology. These different aspects of divergence present subtly different scenarios. For instance, an mtDNA phylogenetic tree reveals a potential cryptic species on the most southerly island in Vanuatu and considerable divergence between at least two other major phylogroups. Microsatellite loci suggest that population genetic divergence between insular populations, both between and within phylogroups, is substantial, a result that is consistent with a low level of interisland gene flow. Finally, most populations were found to be strongly morphologically divergent, but no single population was morphologically diagnosable from all others. Taken together, our results show that, although many measures of divergence are concordant in this system, the number of divergent units identified varies widely depending on the characters considered and approach used. A continuum of divergence and a degree of discordance between different characters are both to be expected under simple models of evolution, but they present problems in terms of delimiting conservation units.
Paudel, Prakash K.; Hais, M.; Kindlmann, Pavel
Roč. 54, apr (2015), s. 37 ISSN 1021-5506 R&D Projects: GA MŠk(CZ) LO1415; GA MŠk LC06073; GA ČR GB14-36098G Institutional support: RVO:67179843 Keywords : capricornis thar * habitat model * Midhills * Muntiacus muntjak * Naemorhedus goral * Nepal Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour Impact factor: 0.885, year: 2015
Navarro, Albert; Fos, Simón; Laguna, Emilio; Durán, David; Rey, Luis; Rubio-Sanz, Laura; Imperial, Juan; Ruiz-Argüeso, Tomás
Lupinus mariae-josephae is a recently discovered endemism that is only found in alkaline-limed soils, a unique habitat for lupines, from a small area in Valencia region (Spain). In these soils, L. mariae-josephae grows in just a few defined patches, and previous conservation efforts directed towards controlled plant reproduction have been unsuccessful. We have previously shown that L. mariae-josephae plants establish a specific root nodule symbiosis with bradyrhizobia present in those soils, and we reasoned that the paucity of these bacteria in soils might contribute to the lack of success in reproducing plants for conservation purposes. Greenhouse experiments using L. mariae-josephae trap-plants showed the absence or near absence of L. mariae-josephae-nodulating bacteria in “terra rossa” soils of Valencia outside of L. mariae-josephae plant patches, and in other “terra rossa” or alkaline red soils of the Iberian Peninsula and Balearic Islands outside of the Valencia L. mariae-josephae endemism region. Among the bradyrhizobia able to establish an efficient symbiosis with L. mariae-josephae plants, two strains, LmjC and LmjM3 were selected as inoculum for seed coating. Two planting experiments were carried out in consecutive years under natural conditions in areas with edapho-climatic characteristics identical to those sustaining natural L. mariae-josephae populations, and successful reproduction of the plant was achieved. Interestingly, the successful reproductive cycle was absolutely dependent on seedling inoculation with effective bradyrhizobia, and optimal performance was observed in plants inoculated with LmjC, a strain that had previously shown the most efficient behavior under controlled conditions. Our results define conditions for L. mariae-josephae conservation and for extension to alkaline-limed soil habitats, where no other known lupine can thrive. PMID:25019379
Rowen van Eeden
Full Text Available Understanding the ranging behaviours of species can be helpful in effective conservation planning. However, for many species that are rare, occur at low densities, or occupy challenging environments, this information is often lacking. The Martial Eagle (Polemaetus bellicosus is a low density apex predator declining in both non-protected and protected areas in southern Africa, and little is known about its ranging behaviour. We use GPS tags fitted to Martial Eagles (n = 8 in Kruger National Park (KNP, South Africa to describe their ranging behaviour and habitat preference. This represents the first time that such movements have been quantified in adult Martial Eagles. Territorial eagles (n = 6 held home ranges averaging ca. 108 km2. Home range estimates were similar to expectations based on inter-nest distances, and these large home range sizes could constrain the carrying capacity of even the largest conservation areas. Two tagged individuals classed as adults on plumage apparently did not hold a territory, and accordingly ranged more widely (ca. 44,000 km2, and beyond KNP boundaries as floaters. Another two territorial individuals abandoned their territories and joined the 'floater' population, and so ranged widely after leaving their territories. These unexpected movements after territory abandonment could indicate underlying environmental degradation. Relatively high mortality of these wide-ranging 'floaters' due to anthropogenic causes (three of four raises further concerns for the species' persistence. Habitat preference models suggested Martial Eagles used areas preferentially that were closer to rivers, had higher tree cover, and were classed as dense bush rather than open bush or grassland. These results can be used by conservation managers to help guide actions to preserve breeding Martial Eagles at an appropriate spatial scale.
Modifying greenspaces to enhance habitat value has been proposed as a means towards protecting or restoring biodiversity in urban landscapes. In this report, we provide a framework for developing low-cost, low-impact enhancements that can be incorporated during the restoration of...
Jennifer L. Reidy; Frank R. Thompson; Sarah W. Kendrick
Savanna and woodland were once common in the Midwest, but land use changes have led to increasing scarcity of these communities. These transitional habitats are being restored across the Midwest, but few studies have evaluated the response of wildlife to restoration or the vegetative gradient created by management. We conducted point counts for 25 songbirds at sites...
Ezyan Nor Hashim
Full Text Available A comparative study of understorey birds inhabiting different habitats, that is, virgin jungle reserve (VJR and regenerated forest (RF, was conducted in Ulu Gombak Forest Reserve and Selangor and Triang Forest Reserve, Negeri Sembilan, Peninsular Malaysia. The objective of this study was to assess the diversity of understorey birds in both habitats and the effects of forest regeneration on the understorey bird community. The mist-netting method was used to capture understorey birds inhabiting both habitats in both locations. Species composition and feeding guild indicated that understorey bird populations were similar in the two habitats. However, the number of secondary forest species such as Little spiderhunter (Arachnothera longirostra in VJR is increasing due to its proximity to RF. This study discovered that RFs in both study areas are not yet fully recovered. However, based on the range of species discovered, the RFs have conservation value and should be maintained because they harbour important forest species such as babblers and flycatchers. The assessment of the community structure of understorey birds in VJR and RF is important for forest management and conservation, especially where both habitats are intact.
Nor Hashim, Ezyan; Ramli, Rosli
A comparative study of understorey birds inhabiting different habitats, that is, virgin jungle reserve (VJR) and regenerated forest (RF), was conducted in Ulu Gombak Forest Reserve and Selangor and Triang Forest Reserve, Negeri Sembilan, Peninsular Malaysia. The objective of this study was to assess the diversity of understorey birds in both habitats and the effects of forest regeneration on the understorey bird community. The mist-netting method was used to capture understorey birds inhabiting both habitats in both locations. Species composition and feeding guild indicated that understorey bird populations were similar in the two habitats. However, the number of secondary forest species such as Little spiderhunter (Arachnothera longirostra) in VJR is increasing due to its proximity to RF. This study discovered that RFs in both study areas are not yet fully recovered. However, based on the range of species discovered, the RFs have conservation value and should be maintained because they harbour important forest species such as babblers and flycatchers. The assessment of the community structure of understorey birds in VJR and RF is important for forest management and conservation, especially where both habitats are intact.
Beerens, James M.; Gawlik, Dale E.; Herring, Garth; Cook, Mark I.
Seasonal and annual variation in food availability during the breeding season plays an influential role in the population dynamics of many avian species. In highly dynamic ecosystems like