Science.gov

Sample records for conserving biodiversity efficiently

  1. Ecological efficiency of voluntary conservation of boreal-forest biodiversity.

    PubMed

    Mönkkönen, Mikko; Ylisirniö, Anna-Liisa; Hämäläinen, Tanja

    2009-04-01

    Current networks of protected areas are biased in many countries toward landscapes of low productivity. Voluntary conservation incentives have been suggested as a socially acceptable way to supplement existing networks with more productive, privately owned areas of high priority for nature conservation. The limited resources committed to nature conservation demand cost-efficiency. Efficiency, however, depends not only on costs incurred to society from alternative ways of maintaining biodiversity but also on ecological values that can be captured. We examined the ecological efficiency of the new market-based voluntary program to preserve forest habitats on private land in southwestern Finland. We compared sites that have become protected (10-year contracts) in the program with managed forests, with sites that have been negotiated for protection for which no contract has been signed, and with the most ecologically valuable privately owned sites in the region that have not been offered for protection by forest owners. We surveyed sites for the amount of dead wood, wood-decomposing fungi, and epiphytic lichens to evaluate their ecological quality. Contracted sites had more features important for overall biodiversity than managed forests and negotiated sites with no contract. These results indicate that procedures used during site selection and negotiations were appropriate and not opportunistic. The contracted sites were also as valuable in ecological terms as the best, still-unprotected, privately owned forests in the region that have not been offered for protection. We conclude that voluntary conservation programs have the potential to yield ecologically valuable sites for protection if the site-selection procedures are appropriate. Reliance on completely voluntary programs, however, may entail uncertainties and inadequacies, for example, in terms of spatial configuration and persistence of the ecological values. Thus, such programs may often need to be supplemented

  2. Conserving Biodiversity Efficiently: What to Do, Where, and When

    PubMed Central

    Wilson, Kerrie A; Underwood, Emma C; Morrison, Scott A; Klausmeyer, Kirk R; Murdoch, William W; Reyers, Belinda; Wardell-Johnson, Grant; Marquet, Pablo A; Rundel, Phil W; McBride, Marissa F; Pressey, Robert L; Bode, Michael; Hoekstra, Jon M; Andelman, Sandy; Looker, Michael; Rondinini, Carlo; Kareiva, Peter; Shaw, M. Rebecca; Possingham, Hugh P

    2007-01-01

    Conservation priority-setting schemes have not yet combined geographic priorities with a framework that can guide the allocation of funds among alternate conservation actions that address specific threats. We develop such a framework, and apply it to 17 of the world's 39 Mediterranean ecoregions. This framework offers an improvement over approaches that only focus on land purchase or species richness and do not account for threats. We discover that one could protect many more plant and vertebrate species by investing in a sequence of conservation actions targeted towards specific threats, such as invasive species control, land acquisition, and off-reserve management, than by relying solely on acquiring land for protected areas. Applying this new framework will ensure investment in actions that provide the most cost-effective outcomes for biodiversity conservation. This will help to minimise the misallocation of scarce conservation resources. PMID:17713985

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-04-22

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

    To address the global extinction crisis, both efficient use of existing conservation funding and new sources of funding are vital. Private sponsorship of charismatic ‘flagship’ species conservation represents an important source of new funding, but has been criticized as being inefficient. However, the ancillary benefits of privately sponsored flagship species conservation via actions benefiting other species have not been quantified, nor have the benefits of incorporating such sponsorship into objective prioritization protocols. Here, we use a comprehensive dataset of conservation actions for the 700 most threatened species in New Zealand to examine the potential biodiversity gains from national private flagship species sponsorship programmes. We find that private funding for flagship species can clearly result in additional species and phylogenetic diversity conserved, via conservation actions shared with other species. When private flagship species funding is incorporated into a prioritization protocol to preferentially sponsor shared actions, expected gains can be more than doubled. However, these gains are consistently smaller than expected gains in a hypothetical scenario where private funding could be optimally allocated among all threatened species. We recommend integrating private sponsorship of flagship species into objective prioritization protocols to sponsor efficient actions that maximize biodiversity gains, or wherever possible, encouraging private donations for broader biodiversity goals. PMID:25808885

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

    PubMed

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

    2009-02-01

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

  6. Reconciling biodiversity and carbon conservation.

    PubMed

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

    2013-05-01

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

  7. Wilderness and biodiversity conservation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mittermeier, R. A.; Mittermeier, C. G.; Brooks, T. M.; Pilgrim, J. D.; Konstant, W. R.; da Fonseca, G. A. B.; Kormos, C.

    2003-09-01

    Human pressure threatens many species and ecosystems, so conservation efforts necessarily prioritize saving them. However, conservation should clearly be proactive wherever possible. In this article, we assess the biodiversity conservation value, and specifically the irreplaceability in terms of species endemism, of those of the planet's ecosystems that remain intact. We find that 24 wilderness areas, all > 1 million hectares, are > 70% intact and have human densities of less than or equal to five people per km2. This wilderness covers 44% of all land but is inhabited by only 3% of people. Given this sparse population, wilderness conservation is cost-effective, especially if ecosystem service value is incorporated. Soberingly, however, most wilderness is not speciose: only 18% of plants and 10% of terrestrial vertebrates are endemic to individual wildernesses, the majority restricted to Amazonia, Congo, New Guinea, the Miombo-Mopane woodlands, and the North American deserts. Global conservation strategy must target these five wildernesses while continuing to prioritize threatened biodiversity hotspots.

  8. Conserving biodiversity in production landscapes.

    PubMed

    Wilson, K A; Meijaard, E; Drummond, S; Grantham, H S; Boitani, L; Catullo, G; Christie, L; Dennis, R; Dutton, I; Falcucci, A; Maiorano, L; Possingham, H P; Rondinini, C; Turner, W R; Venter, O; Watts, M

    2010-09-01

    Alternative land uses make different contributions to the conservation of biodiversity and have different implementation and management costs. Conservation planning analyses to date have generally assumed that land is either protected or unprotected, and that the unprotected portion does not contribute to conservation goals. We develop and apply a new planning approach that explicitly accounts for the contribution of a diverse range of land uses to achieving conservation goals. Using East Kalimantan (Indonesian Borneo) as a case study, we prioritize investments in alternative conservation strategies and account for the relative contribution of land uses ranging from production forest to well-managed protected areas. We employ data on the distribution of mammals and assign species-specific conservation targets to achieve equitable protection by accounting for life history characteristics and home range sizes. The relative sensitivity of each species to forest degradation determines the contribution of each land use to achieving targets. We compare the cost effectiveness of our approach to a plan that considers only the contribution of protected areas to biodiversity conservation, and to a plan that assumes that the cost of conservation is represented by only the opportunity costs of conservation to the timber industry. Our preliminary results will require further development and substantial stakeholder engagement prior to implementation; nonetheless we reveal that, by accounting for the contribution of unprotected land, we can obtain more refined estimates of the costs of conservation. Using traditional planning approaches would overestimate the cost of achieving the conservation targets by an order of magnitude. Our approach reveals not only where to invest, but which strategies to invest in, in order to effectively and efficiently conserve biodiversity.

  9. Wilderness and biodiversity conservation.

    PubMed

    Mittermeier, R A; Mittermeier, C G; Brooks, T M; Pilgrim, J D; Konstant, W R; da Fonseca, G A B; Kormos, C

    2003-09-02

    Human pressure threatens many species and ecosystems, so conservation efforts necessarily prioritize saving them. However, conservation should clearly be proactive wherever possible. In this article, we assess the biodiversity conservation value, and specifically the irreplaceability in terms of species endemism, of those of the planet's ecosystems that remain intact. We find that 24 wilderness areas, all > or = 1 million hectares, are > or = 70% intact and have human densities of less than or equal to five people per km2. This wilderness covers 44% of all land but is inhabited by only 3% of people. Given this sparse population, wilderness conservation is cost-effective, especially if ecosystem service value is incorporated. Soberingly, however, most wilderness is not speciose: only 18% of plants and 10% of terrestrial vertebrates are endemic to individual wildernesses, the majority restricted to Amazonia, Congo, New Guinea, the Miombo-Mopane woodlands, and the North American deserts. Global conservation strategy must target these five wildernesses while continuing to prioritize threatened biodiversity hotspots.

  10. Habitat modeling for biodiversity conservation.

    Treesearch

    Bruce G. Marcot

    2006-01-01

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

  11. Biodiversity conservation in local planning.

    PubMed

    Miller, James R; Groom, Martha; Hess, George R; Steelman, Toddi; Stokes, David L; Thompson, Jan; Bowman, Troy; Fricke, Laura; King, Brandon; Marquardt, Ryan

    2009-02-01

    Local land-use policy is increasingly being recognized as fundamental to biodiversity conservation in the United States. Many planners and conservation scientists have called for broader use of planning and regulatory tools to support the conservation of biodiversity at local scales. Yet little is known about the pervasiveness of these practices. We conducted an on-line survey of county, municipal, and tribal planning directors (n =116) in 3 geographic regions of the United States: metropolitan Seattle, Washington; metropolitan Des Moines, Iowa; and the Research Triangle, North Carolina. Our objectives were to gauge the extent to which local planning departments address biodiversity conservation and to identify factors that facilitate or hinder conservation actions in local planning. We found that biodiversity conservation was seldom a major consideration in these departments. Staff time was mainly devoted to development mandates and little time was spent on biodiversity conservation. Regulations requiring conservation actions that might benefit biodiversity were uncommon, with the exception of rules governing water quality in all 3 regions and the protection of threatened and endangered species in the Seattle region. Planning tools that could enhance habitat conservation were used infrequently. Collaboration across jurisdictions was widespread, but rarely focused on conservation. Departments with a conservation specialist on staff tended to be associated with higher levels of conservation actions. Jurisdictions in the Seattle region also reported higher levels of conservation action, largely driven by state and federal mandates. Increased funding was most frequently cited as a factor that would facilitate greater consideration of biodiversity in local planning. There are numerous opportunities for conservation biologists to play a role in improving conservation planning at local scales.

  12. Motivations for conserving urban biodiversity.

    PubMed

    Dearborn, Donald C; Kark, Salit

    2010-04-01

    In a time of increasing urbanization, the fundamental value of conserving urban biodiversity remains controversial. How much of a fixed budget should be spent on conservation in urban versus nonurban landscapes? The answer should depend on the goals that drive our conservation actions, yet proponents of urban conservation often fail to specify the motivation for protecting urban biodiversity. This is an important shortcoming on several fronts, including a missed opportunity to make a stronger appeal to those who believe conservation biology should focus exclusively on more natural, wilder landscapes. We argue that urban areas do offer an important venue for conservation biology, but that we must become better at choosing and articulating our goals. We explored seven possible motivations for urban biodiversity conservation: preserving local biodiversity, creating stepping stones to nonurban habitat, understanding and facilitating responses to environmental change, conducting environmental education, providing ecosystem services, fulfilling ethical responsibilities, and improving human well-being. To attain all these goals, challenges must be faced that are common to the urban environment, such as localized pollution, disruption of ecosystem structure, and limited availability of land. There are, however, also challenges specific only to particular goals, meaning that different goals will require different approaches and actions. This highlights the importance of specifying the motivations behind urban biodiversity conservation. If the goals are unknown, progress cannot be assessed.

  13. Biodiversity conservation and NEPA

    SciTech Connect

    Southerland, M.T. )

    1993-01-01

    The Council of Environmental Quality (CEQ) and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) have recently developed new guidelines to facilitate the consideration of biodiversity in the preparation and review of environmental impact assessments. The purpose of these efforts is to facilitate the incorporation of biodiversity considerations into the ecological analyses of all federal agencies. Because federal decisions requiring environmental impact assessments under NEPA affect hundreds of millions of federal and non-federal lands and waters, improved consideration of the impacts of federal activities is essential to stemming the loss of biological diversity in the United States. The designation of ecosystems or habitats'' of concern is a useful first step identifying risks to biodiversity. After reviewing the status and trends of habitats within eight major regions of the US, the EPA guidelines identify habitats contributing to regional and global biodiversity such as remnant prairies, riparian habitats, and old-growth forests. This document also discusses how the impacts on habitats vary with the different activities of land conversion, timber harvesting, grazing, mining, and water management.

  14. Diversity, biodiversity, conservation, and sustainability.

    PubMed

    Marques, J C

    2001-10-11

    The concepts of diversity and biodiversity are analysed regarding their historical emergence, and their intrinsic meaning and differences are discussed. Through a brief synopsis, difficulties usually experienced by statisticians in capturing the dynamics of diversity are analysed and main problems identified. The shift from diversity to the more holistic biodiversity as a working concept is appraised in terms of the novelty involved. Through a number of examples, the way the two concepts capture natural cyclic changes is analysed, and their reciprocal and complementary relations are approached theoretically. The way diversity could develop from the stores of biodiversity as its active expression through selective and evolutionary processes is described. Through the use of a very simple dynamic model, the concepts of diversity and biodiversity are analysed in extremely opposite hypothetical scenarios. Comparisons with natural situations are made and the theoretical implications from the conservation point of view are discussed. These support the opinion that conservation undertaken in restricted and protected areas is not self-sustainable, needing permanent external intervention to regulate internal processes, and in the long run will most probably lead in the direction of obsolescence and extinction. Finally, the relations between diversity, biodiversity, and sustainability are approached. The vagueness of the sustainability concept is discussed. Preservation of biodiversity is then defended as one of the best available indicators to assist us in fixing boundaries which may help to provide a more precise definition of sustainability.

  15. Biodiversity Conservation in the REDD

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Deforestation and forest degradation in the tropics is a major source of global greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. The tropics also harbour more than half the world's threatened species, raising the possibility that reducing GHG emissions by curtailing tropical deforestation could provide substantial co-benefits for biodiversity conservation. Here we explore the potential for such co-benefits in Indonesia, a leading source of GHG emissions from land cover and land use change, and among the most species-rich countries in the world. We show that focal ecosystems for interventions to reduce emissions from deforestation and forest degradation in Indonesia do not coincide with areas supporting the most species-rich communities or highest concentration of threatened species. We argue that inherent trade-offs among ecosystems in emission reduction potential, opportunity cost of foregone development and biodiversity values will require a regulatory framework to balance emission reduction interventions with biodiversity co-benefit targets. We discuss how such a regulatory framework might function, and caution that pursuing emission reduction strategies without such a framework may undermine, not enhance, long-term prospects for biodiversity conservation in the tropics. PMID:21092321

  16. Conservation of deep pelagic biodiversity.

    PubMed

    Robison, Bruce H

    2009-08-01

    The deep ocean is home to the largest ecosystems on our planet. This vast realm contains what may be the greatest number of animal species, the greatest biomass, and the greatest number of individual organisms in the living world. Humans have explored the deep ocean for about 150 years, and most of what is known is based on studies of the deep seafloor. In contrast, the water column above the deep seabed comprises more than 90% of the living space, yet less than 1% of this biome has been explored. The deep pelagic biota is the largest and least-known major faunal group on Earth despite its obvious importance at the global scale. Pelagic species represent an incomparable reservoir of biodiversity. Although we have yet to discover and describe the majority of these species, the threats to their continued existence are numerous and growing. Conserving deep pelagic biodiversity is a problem of global proportions that has never been addressed comprehensively. The potential effects of these threats include the extensive restructuring of entire ecosystems, changes in the geographical ranges of many species, large-scale elimination of taxa, and a decline in biodiversity at all scales. This review provides an initial framework of threat assessment for confronting the challenge of conserving deep pelagic biodiversity; and it outlines the need for baseline surveys and protected areas as preliminary policy goals.

  17. Comparative genomics for biodiversity conservation

    PubMed Central

    Grueber, Catherine E.

    2015-01-01

    Genomic approaches are gathering momentum in biology and emerging opportunities lie in the creative use of comparative molecular methods for revealing the processes that influence diversity of wildlife. However, few comparative genomic studies are performed with explicit and specific objectives to aid conservation of wild populations. Here I provide a brief overview of comparative genomic approaches that offer specific benefits to biodiversity conservation. Because conservation examples are few, I draw on research from other areas to demonstrate how comparing genomic data across taxa may be used to inform the characterisation of conservation units and studies of hybridisation, as well as studies that provide conservation outcomes from a better understanding of the drivers of divergence. A comparative approach can also provide valuable insight into the threatening processes that impact rare species, such as emerging diseases and their management in conservation. In addition to these opportunities, I note areas where additional research is warranted. Overall, comparing and contrasting the genomic composition of threatened and other species provide several useful tools for helping to preserve the molecular biodiversity of the global ecosystem. PMID:26106461

  18. Biodiversity conservation in running waters

    SciTech Connect

    Allan, J.D. ); Flecker, A.S. )

    1993-01-01

    In the concerns about biodiversity conservation, fresh waters have received less attention than tropical forests and oceans. However, running waters harbor a diverse panoply of species, habitats, and ecosystems, including some of the most threatened and many having great value to human society. An overview of the biological diversity of running waters and the state of imperilment is presented. Six major factors that threaten destruction of running water species and ecosystems are discussed: habitat loss and degradation; species invasions; overharvesting; secondary extinctions; chemical and organic pollution; global climate change. General measures for recovery and restoration of running waters conclude the article.

  19. Island biodiversity conservation needs palaeoecology.

    PubMed

    Nogué, Sandra; de Nascimento, Lea; Froyd, Cynthia A; Wilmshurst, Janet M; de Boer, Erik J; Coffey, Emily E D; Whittaker, Robert J; Fernández-Palacios, José María; Willis, Kathy J

    2017-06-22

    The discovery and colonization of islands by humans has invariably resulted in their widespread ecological transformation. The small and isolated populations of many island taxa, and their evolution in the absence of humans and their introduced taxa, mean that they are particularly vulnerable to human activities. Consequently, even the most degraded islands are a focus for restoration, eradication, and monitoring programmes to protect the remaining endemic and/or relict populations. Here, we build a framework that incorporates an assessment of the degree of change from multiple baseline reference periods using long-term ecological data. The use of multiple reference points may provide information on both the variability of natural systems and responses to successive waves of cultural transformation of island ecosystems, involving, for example, the alteration of fire and grazing regimes and the introduction of non-native species. We provide exemplification of how such approaches can provide valuable information for biodiversity conservation managers of island ecosystems.

  20. On biodiversity conservation and poverty traps

    PubMed Central

    Barrett, Christopher B.; Travis, Alexander J.; Dasgupta, Partha

    2011-01-01

    This paper introduces a special feature on biodiversity conservation and poverty traps. We define and explain the core concepts and then identify four distinct classes of mechanisms that define important interlinkages between biodiversity and poverty. The multiplicity of candidate mechanisms underscores a major challenge in designing policy appropriate across settings. This framework is then used to introduce the ensuing set of papers, which empirically explore these various mechanisms linking poverty traps and biodiversity conservation. PMID:21873176

  1. Conserving biodiversity on native rangelands: Symposium proceedings

    Treesearch

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

    1997-01-01

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

  2. Biodiversity conservation and the eradication of poverty.

    PubMed

    Adams, William M; Aveling, Ros; Brockington, Dan; Dickson, Barney; Elliott, Jo; Hutton, Jon; Roe, Dilys; Vira, Bhaskar; Wolmer, William

    2004-11-12

    It is widely accepted that biodiversity loss and poverty are linked problems and that conservation and poverty reduction should be tackled together. However, success with integrated strategies is elusive. There is sharp debate about the social impacts of conservation programs and the success of community-based approaches to conservation. Clear conceptual frameworks are needed if policies in these two areas are to be combined. We review the links between poverty alleviation and biodiversity conservation and present a conceptual typology of these relationships.

  3. Economic growth, biodiversity loss and conservation effort.

    PubMed

    Dietz, Simon; Adger, W Neil

    2003-05-01

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

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

    PubMed

    McClanahan, T R; Rankin, P S

    2016-10-01

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

  5. Novel urban ecosystems, biodiversity, and conservation.

    PubMed

    Kowarik, Ingo

    2011-01-01

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

  6. Use of habitats as surrogates of biodiversity for efficient coral reef conservation planning in Pacific Ocean islands.

    PubMed

    Dalleau, Mayeul; Andréfouët, Serge; Wabnitz, Colette C C; Payri, Claude; Wantiez, Laurent; Pichon, Michel; Friedman, Kim; Vigliola, Laurent; Benzoni, Francesca

    2010-04-01

    Marine protected areas (MPAs) have been highlighted as a means toward effective conservation of coral reefs. New strategies are required to more effectively select MPA locations and increase the pace of their implementation. Many criteria exist to design MPA networks, but generally, it is recommended that networks conserve a diversity of species selected for, among other attributes, their representativeness, rarity, or endemicity. Because knowledge of species' spatial distribution remains scarce, efficient surrogates are urgently needed. We used five different levels of habitat maps and six spatial scales of analysis to identify under which circumstances habitat data used to design MPA networks for Wallis Island provided better representation of species than random choice alone. Protected-area site selections were derived from a rarity-complementarity algorithm. Habitat surrogacy was tested for commercial fish species, all fish species, commercially harvested invertebrates, corals, and algae species. Efficiency of habitat surrogacy varied by species group, type of habitat map, and spatial scale of analysis. Maps with the highest habitat thematic complexity provided better surrogates than simpler maps and were more robust to changes in spatial scales. Surrogates were most efficient for commercial fishes, corals, and algae but not for commercial invertebrates. Conversely, other measurements of species-habitat associations, such as richness congruence and composition similarities provided weak results. We provide, in part, a habitat-mapping methodology for designation of MPAs for Pacific Ocean islands that are characterized by habitat zonations similar to Wallis. Given the increasing availability and affordability of space-borne imagery to map habitats, our approach could appreciably facilitate and improve current approaches to coral reef conservation and enhance MPA implementation.

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

    PubMed

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

    2008-11-01

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

  8. Land market feedbacks can undermine biodiversity conservation.

    PubMed

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

    2006-04-04

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

  9. Optimal fire histories for biodiversity conservation.

    PubMed

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

    2015-04-01

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

  10. Biodiversity Conservation and Conservation Biotechnology Tools

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

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

  11. Biodiversity, conservation biology, and rational choice.

    PubMed

    Frank, David

    2014-03-01

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

  12. Macroeconomic policy, growth, and biodiversity conservation.

    PubMed

    Lawn, Philip

    2008-12-01

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

  13. Biodiversity informatics and the plant conservation baseline.

    PubMed

    Paton, Alan

    2009-11-01

    Primary baseline data on taxonomy and species distribution, and its integration with environmental variables, has a valuable role to play in achieving internationally recognised targets for plant diversity conservation, such as the Global Strategy for Plant Conservation. The importance of primary baseline data and the role of biodiversity informatics in linking these data to other environmental variables are discussed. The need to maintain digital resources and make them widely accessible is an additional requirement of institutions who already collect and maintain this baseline data. The lack of resources in many species-rich areas to gather these data and make them widely accessible needs to be addressed if the full benefit of biodiversity informatics on plant conservation is to be realised.

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

    PubMed

    Alho, C J R; Sabino, J

    2011-04-01

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

  15. Is It Time for Synthetic Biodiversity Conservation?

    PubMed

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

    2017-02-01

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

  16. Extinction debt: a challenge for biodiversity conservation.

    PubMed

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

    2009-10-01

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

  17. Household location choices: implications for biodiversity conservation.

    PubMed

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

    2008-08-01

    Successful conservation efforts require understanding human behaviors that directly affect biodiversity. Choice of household location represents an observable behavior that has direct effects on biodiversity conservation, but no one has examined the sociocultural predictors of this choice relative to its environmental impacts. We conducted a case study of the Teton Valley of Idaho and Wyoming (U.S.A.) that (1) explored relationships between sociodemographic variables, environmental attitudes, and the environmental impact of household location choices, (2) assessed the potential for small household sizes in natural areas to multiply the environmental impacts of household location decisions, and (3) evaluated how length of residency predicted the environmental attitudes of people living in natural areas. We collected sociodemographic data, spatial coordinates, and land-cover information in a survey of 416 households drawn from a random sample of Teton Valley residents (95% compliance rate). Immigrants (respondents not born in the study area) with the lowest education levels and least environmentally oriented attitudes lived in previously established residential areas in disproportionately high numbers, and older and more educated immigrants with the most environmentally oriented attitudes lived in natural areas in disproportionately high numbers. Income was not a significant predictor of household location decisions. Those living in natural areas had more environmental impact per person because of the location and because small households (<3 people/household) were 4 times as likely in natural areas as large households. Longer residency in natural areas predicted less environmentally oriented attitudes, suggesting that living in natural areas does not foster more concern for nature. Because populaces are rapidly aging, growing more educated, and potentially growing more environmentally oriented, these patterns are troubling for biodiversity conservation. Our results

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

    Treesearch

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

    2016-01-01

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

  19. Conserving tropical biodiversity via market forces and spatial targeting

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-06-16

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

  1. Core issues in the economics of biodiversity conservation.

    PubMed

    Tisdell, Clement A

    2011-02-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2011-09-01

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

  3. Upgrading protected areas to conserve wild biodiversity.

    PubMed

    Pringle, Robert M

    2017-05-31

    International agreements mandate the expansion of Earth's protected-area network as a bulwark against the continued extinction of wild populations, species, and ecosystems. Yet many protected areas are underfunded, poorly managed, and ecologically damaged; the conundrum is how to increase their coverage and effectiveness simultaneously. Innovative restoration and rewilding programmes in Costa Rica's Área de Conservación Guanacaste and Mozambique's Parque Nacional da Gorongosa highlight how degraded ecosystems can be rehabilitated, expanded, and woven into the cultural fabric of human societies. Worldwide, enormous potential for biodiversity conservation can be realized by upgrading existing nature reserves while harmonizing them with the needs and aspirations of their constituencies.

  4. Global Priorities for Marine Biodiversity Conservation

    PubMed Central

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

    2014-01-01

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

  5. Global priorities for marine biodiversity conservation.

    PubMed

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

    2014-01-01

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

  6. Considering connections between Hollywood and biodiversity conservation.

    PubMed

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

    2017-09-27

    Cinema offers a substantial opportunity to share messages with a wide audience. Given its global range and potentially high impact, there is an urgent need for research that evaluates the effects of this form of visual media on conservation outcomes. Cinema can influence the awareness and behaviours of non-specialist audiences, and could therefore play an important positive and/or negative role in biodiversity conservation through behavioural change and social pressure on key stakeholders and policy makers. Limited awareness about the potential benefits and limitations of cinema for conservation, as well as a lack of evidence about impacts, currently hinder our ability to learn from previous and ongoing initiatives, and to engage productively with the movie industry. We discuss the key opportunities and risks that arise from cinematic representations of conservation issues and species of concern, making use of examples and case studies where they are available. We additionally provide a framework that enables conservationists to better understand and engage with the film industry, highlighting how this can facilitate engagement with the movie industry, harness its potential, and improve work to mitigate any negative consequences. A robust evidence base is key for evaluating and planning these engagements, and for informing related policy and management decisions. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.

  7. A Bigger Toolbox: Biotechnology in Biodiversity Conservation.

    PubMed

    Corlett, Richard T

    2017-01-01

    Conservation biology needs a bigger toolbox to meet unprecedented challenges. Genomics, fueled by declining sequencing costs, offers novel tools with increased precision for genetic questions previously answered with a few molecular markers, as well as completely new possibilities. Metabarcoding promises quicker, cheaper, and more accurate assessments of biodiversity in groups that are difficult to assess by traditional methods, while sequencing low-quality DNA extends the range of useable materials to include museum specimens, archeological remains, and environmental samples. Genomic and transcriptomic data can be used to assess the potential of populations to adapt to new challenges. In the near future, gene-editing tools may help endangered species cope with change, while gene drives control unwanted species and help wanted ones. De-extinction has become a serious prospect. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

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

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Moon, Katie; Cocklin, Chris

    2011-01-01

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

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

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Moon, Katie; Cocklin, Chris

    2011-01-01

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

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

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    2000

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

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

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    2000

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

  12. Economic valuation for the conservation of marine biodiversity.

    PubMed

    Beaumont, N J; Austen, M C; Mangi, S C; Townsend, M

    2008-03-01

    Policy makers are increasingly recognising the role of environmental valuation to guide and support the management and conservation of biodiversity. This paper presents a goods and services approach to determine the economic value of marine biodiversity in the UK, with the aim of clarifying the role of valuation in the management of marine biodiversity. The goods and services resulting from UK marine biodiversity are detailed, and 8 of the 13 services are valued in monetary terms. It is found that a decline in UK marine biodiversity could result in a varying, and at present unpredictable, change in the provision of goods and services, including reduced resilience and resistance to change, declining marine environmental health, reduced fisheries potential, and loss of recreational opportunities. The results suggest that this approach can facilitate biodiversity management by enabling the optimal allocation of limited management resources and through raising awareness of the importance of marine biodiversity.

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

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Grace, Marcus; Byrne, Jenny

    2010-01-01

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

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

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Grace, Marcus; Byrne, Jenny

    2010-01-01

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

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

    Treesearch

    Sally. Duncan

    2000-01-01

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

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

    Treesearch

    Ram Bhandari

    2006-01-01

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

  17. Biodiversity influences plant productivity through niche-efficiency.

    PubMed

    Liang, Jingjing; Zhou, Mo; Tobin, Patrick C; McGuire, A David; Reich, Peter B

    2015-05-05

    The loss of biodiversity is threatening ecosystem productivity and services worldwide, spurring efforts to quantify its effects on the functioning of natural ecosystems. Previous research has focused on the positive role of biodiversity on resource acquisition (i.e., niche complementarity), but a lack of study on resource utilization efficiency, a link between resource and productivity, has rendered it difficult to quantify the biodiversity-ecosystem functioning relationship. Here we demonstrate that biodiversity loss reduces plant productivity, other things held constant, through theory, empirical evidence, and simulations under gradually relaxed assumptions. We developed a theoretical model named niche-efficiency to integrate niche complementarity and a heretofore-ignored mechanism of diminishing marginal productivity in quantifying the effects of biodiversity loss on plant productivity. Based on niche-efficiency, we created a relative productivity metric and a productivity impact index (PII) to assist in biological conservation and resource management. Relative productivity provides a standardized measure of the influence of biodiversity on individual productivity, and PII is a functionally based taxonomic index to assess individual species' inherent value in maintaining current ecosystem productivity. Empirical evidence from the Alaska boreal forest suggests that every 1% reduction in overall plant diversity could render an average of 0.23% decline in individual tree productivity. Out of the 283 plant species of the region, we found that large woody plants generally have greater PII values than other species. This theoretical model would facilitate the integration of biological conservation in the international campaign against several pressing global issues involving energy use, climate change, and poverty.

  18. Freshwater biodiversity: importance, threats, status and conservation challenges.

    PubMed

    Dudgeon, David; Arthington, Angela H; Gessner, Mark O; Kawabata, Zen-Ichiro; Knowler, Duncan J; Lévêque, Christian; Naiman, Robert J; Prieur-Richard, Anne-Hélène; Soto, Doris; Stiassny, Melanie L J; Sullivan, Caroline A

    2006-05-01

    Freshwater biodiversity is the over-riding conservation priority during the International Decade for Action - 'Water for Life' - 2005 to 2015. Fresh water makes up only 0.01% of the World's water and approximately 0.8% of the Earth's surface, yet this tiny fraction of global water supports at least 100000 species out of approximately 1.8 million - almost 6% of all described species. Inland waters and freshwater biodiversity constitute a valuable natural resource, in economic, cultural, aesthetic, scientific and educational terms. Their conservation and management are critical to the interests of all humans, nations and governments. Yet this precious heritage is in crisis. Fresh waters are experiencing declines in biodiversity far greater than those in the most affected terrestrial ecosystems, and if trends in human demands for water remain unaltered and species losses continue at current rates, the opportunity to conserve much of the remaining biodiversity in fresh water will vanish before the 'Water for Life' decade ends in 2015. Why is this so, and what is being done about it? This article explores the special features of freshwater habitats and the biodiversity they support that makes them especially vulnerable to human activities. We document threats to global freshwater biodiversity under five headings: overexploitation; water pollution; flow modification; destruction or degradation of habitat; and invasion by exotic species. Their combined and interacting influences have resulted in population declines and range reduction of freshwater biodiversity worldwide. Conservation of biodiversity is complicated by the landscape position of rivers and wetlands as 'receivers' of land-use effluents, and the problems posed by endemism and thus non-substitutability. In addition, in many parts of the world, fresh water is subject to severe competition among multiple human stakeholders. Protection of freshwater biodiversity is perhaps the ultimate conservation challenge

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

    USGS Publications Warehouse

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

    2017-01-01

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

  20. EnviroAtlas - Biodiversity Conservation Metrics for Conterminous United States

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    This EnviroAtlas web service supports research and online mapping activities related to EnviroAtlas (https://www.epa.gov/enviroatlas). The Biodiversity Conservation category in this web service includes layers illustrating the ecosystems and natural resources that support biodiversity, the need or demand for conservation, the impacts associated with biodiversity and conservation, and factors that place stress on the natural environment's capability to maintain biodiversity. EnviroAtlas allows the user to interact with a web-based, easy-to-use, mapping application to view and analyze multiple ecosystem services for the conterminous United States. Additional descriptive information about each attribute in this web service is located within each web service layer (see Full Metadata hyperlink) or can be found in its associated EnviroAtlas Fact Sheet (https://www.epa.gov/enviroatlas/enviroatlas-fact-sheets).

  1. Biodiversity conservation in metacommunity networks: linking pattern and persistence.

    PubMed

    Economo, Evan P

    2011-06-01

    A central goal of conservation science is to identify the most important habitat patches for maintaining biodiversity on a landscape. Spatial biodiversity patterns are often used for such assessments, and patches that harbor unique diversity are generally prioritized over those with high community similarity to other areas. This places an emphasis on biodiversity representation, but removing a patch can have cascading effects on biodiversity persistence in the remaining ecological communities. Metacommunity theory provides a mechanistic route to the linking of biodiversity patterns on a landscape with the subsequent dynamics of diversity loss after habitat is degraded. Using spatially explicit neutral theory, I focus on the situation where spatial patterns of diversity and similarity are generated by the structure of dispersal networks and not environmental gradients. I find that gains in biodiversity representation are nullified by losses in persistence, and as a result the effects of removing a patch on metacommunity diversity are essentially independent of complementarity or other biodiversity patterns. In this scenario, maximizing protected area and not biodiversity representation is the key to maintaining diversity in the long term. These results highlight the need for a broader understanding of how conservation paradigms perform under different models of metacommunity dynamics.

  2. Economic valuation of biodiversity conservation: the meaning of numbers.

    PubMed

    Martín-López, Berta; Montes, Carlos; Benayas, Javier

    2008-06-01

    Recognition of the need to include economic criteria in the conservation policy decision-making process has encouraged the use of economic-valuation techniques. Nevertheless, whether it is possible to accurately assign economic values to biodiversity and if so what these values really represent is being debated. We reviewed 60 recent papers on economic valuation of biodiversity and carried out a meta-analysis of these studies to determine what factors affect willingness to pay for biodiversity conservation. We analyzed the internal variables of the contingent-valuation method (measure of benefits, vehicle of payment, elicitation format, or timing of payment) and anthropomorphic, anthropocentric and scientific factors. Funding allocation mostly favored the conservation of species with anthropomorphic and anthropocentric characteristics instead of considering scientific factors. We recommend researchers and policy makers contemplate economic valuations of biodiversity carefully, considering the inherent biases of the contingent-valuation method and the anthropomorphic and anthropocentric factors resulting from the public's attitude toward species. Because of the increasing trend of including economic considerations in conservation practices, we suggest that in the future interdisciplinary teams of ecologists, economists, and social scientists collaborate and conduct comparative analyses, such as we have done here. Use of the contingent-valuation method in biodiversity conservation policies can provide useful information about alternative conservation strategies if questionnaires are carefully constructed, respondents are sufficiently informed, and the underlying factors that influence willingness to pay are identified.

  3. Biodiversity influences plant productivity through niche–efficiency

    PubMed Central

    Liang, Jingjing; Zhou, Mo; Tobin, Patrick C.; McGuire, A. David; Reich, Peter B.

    2015-01-01

    The loss of biodiversity is threatening ecosystem productivity and services worldwide, spurring efforts to quantify its effects on the functioning of natural ecosystems. Previous research has focused on the positive role of biodiversity on resource acquisition (i.e., niche complementarity), but a lack of study on resource utilization efficiency, a link between resource and productivity, has rendered it difficult to quantify the biodiversity–ecosystem functioning relationship. Here we demonstrate that biodiversity loss reduces plant productivity, other things held constant, through theory, empirical evidence, and simulations under gradually relaxed assumptions. We developed a theoretical model named niche–efficiency to integrate niche complementarity and a heretofore-ignored mechanism of diminishing marginal productivity in quantifying the effects of biodiversity loss on plant productivity. Based on niche–efficiency, we created a relative productivity metric and a productivity impact index (PII) to assist in biological conservation and resource management. Relative productivity provides a standardized measure of the influence of biodiversity on individual productivity, and PII is a functionally based taxonomic index to assess individual species’ inherent value in maintaining current ecosystem productivity. Empirical evidence from the Alaska boreal forest suggests that every 1% reduction in overall plant diversity could render an average of 0.23% decline in individual tree productivity. Out of the 283 plant species of the region, we found that large woody plants generally have greater PII values than other species. This theoretical model would facilitate the integration of biological conservation in the international campaign against several pressing global issues involving energy use, climate change, and poverty. PMID:25901325

  4. Biodiversity conservation status in the Republic of Kosovo with focus on biodiversity centres.

    PubMed

    Zeqir, Veselaj; Behxhet, Mustafa; Avni, Hajdari; Zenel, Krasniqi

    2012-04-01

    This paper presents the most recent results on Kosovo biodiversity conservation efforts with focus on two main biodiversity centers of Kosovo: Sharri mountain (already declared as National Park) and Bjeshket e Nemuna mountains in process of designation as a National park. The study presents collection of up to date publications on biodiversity of Kosovo. Of course, there is still to be investigated particularly in the field of lower plants as well invertebrate fauna species. Beside the small territory of 10,887 km2, Kosovo is quite rich in both plant and animal biodiversity. Up to date 1800 vascular plant species have been recorded, while expected number is about 2500 species. Number of higher vertebrates is 210, while the invertebrates are not studied with exception of Lepidoptera with about 150 species. There is no Red List of species for Kosovo developed yet, while some short term conservation measures have already taken place.

  5. Conserving biodiversity: A research agenda for development agencies

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1992-01-01

    This book was written to assist development agencies in identifying the kinds of biological, economic and cultural research that need to be funding to provide an information base for conserving biodiversity. The presentation is concise and non-technical with summaries of data and ideas relevant to biodiversity. The human role in accelerating biotic loss is discussed, and stragies for sustainable land use and restoration of degraded lands are among several topics.

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

    PubMed

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

    2014-06-01

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

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

    Treesearch

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

    2017-01-01

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

  8. Biological invasions and the conservation of biodiversity.

    PubMed

    Pascal, M; Le Guyader, H; Simberloff, D

    2010-08-01

    Consideration of definitions of 'biological invasion' and 'biodiversity' shows why invasions have recently generated great interest among conservationists. Many studies show that invasion numbers have increased drastically over the last five centuries, that this exponential increase is not levelling off, and that human activities are the only reason for the phenomenon. Many mechanisms are portrayed in an evolutionary framework and their consequences for biodiversity are described at three levels of life--gene, species and ecosystem. Examples from islands show that insular ecosystems are especially prone to damage from invasions; they also serve as 'laboratories' to elucidate the nature of invasion impacts. An important management approach--eradication--is discussed. Eradicating invaders not only aids understanding of their impacts on native species but also in understanding how ecosystems function. In fact, biological invasions can be seen as 'experiments', providing a rare opportunity to help answer certain fundamental scientific questions.

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-12-01

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

  10. Conserving Critical Sites for Biodiversity Provides Disproportionate Benefits to People

    PubMed Central

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

    2012-01-01

    Protecting natural habitats in priority areas is essential to halt the loss of biodiversity. Yet whether these benefits for biodiversity also yield benefits for human well-being remains controversial. Here we assess the potential human well-being benefits of safeguarding a global network of sites identified as top priorities for the conservation of threatened species. Conserving these sites would yield benefits – in terms of a) climate change mitigation through avoidance of CO2 emissions from deforestation; b) freshwater services to downstream human populations; c) retention of option value; and d) benefits to maintenance of human cultural diversity – significantly exceeding those anticipated from randomly selected sites within the same countries and ecoregions. Results suggest that safeguarding sites important for biodiversity conservation provides substantial benefits to human well-being. PMID:22666337

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

    PubMed

    Larsen, Frank W; Turner, Will R; Brooks, Thomas M

    2012-01-01

    Protecting natural habitats in priority areas is essential to halt the loss of biodiversity. Yet whether these benefits for biodiversity also yield benefits for human well-being remains controversial. Here we assess the potential human well-being benefits of safeguarding a global network of sites identified as top priorities for the conservation of threatened species. Conserving these sites would yield benefits--in terms of a) climate change mitigation through avoidance of CO(2) emissions from deforestation; b) freshwater services to downstream human populations; c) retention of option value; and d) benefits to maintenance of human cultural diversity--significantly exceeding those anticipated from randomly selected sites within the same countries and ecoregions. Results suggest that safeguarding sites important for biodiversity conservation provides substantial benefits to human well-being.

  12. Large conservation gains possible for global biodiversity facets

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2017-06-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

    Frank, David M.; Sarkar, Sahotra

    2010-01-01

    Background Decision analysis and game theory [1], [2] have proved useful tools in various biodiversity conservation planning and modeling contexts [3]–[5]. This paper shows how game theory may be used to inform group decisions in biodiversity conservation scenarios by modeling conflicts between stakeholders to identify Pareto–inefficient Nash equilibria. These are cases in which each agent pursuing individual self–interest leads to a worse outcome for all, relative to other feasible outcomes. Three case studies from biodiversity conservation contexts showing this feature are modeled to demonstrate how game–theoretical representation can inform group decision-making. Methodology and Principal Findings The mathematical theory of games is used to model three biodiversity conservation scenarios with Pareto–inefficient Nash equilibria: (i) a two–agent case involving wild dogs in South Africa; (ii) a three–agent raptor and grouse conservation scenario from the United Kingdom; and (iii) an n–agent fish and coral conservation scenario from the Philippines. In each case there is reason to believe that traditional mechanism–design solutions that appeal to material incentives may be inadequate, and the game–theoretical analysis recommends a resumption of further deliberation between agents and the initiation of trust—and confidence—building measures. Conclusions and Significance Game theory can and should be used as a normative tool in biodiversity conservation contexts: identifying scenarios with Pareto–inefficient Nash equilibria enables constructive action in order to achieve (closer to) optimal conservation outcomes, whether by policy solutions based on mechanism design or otherwise. However, there is mounting evidence [6] that formal mechanism–design solutions may backfire in certain cases. Such scenarios demand a return to group deliberation and the creation of reciprocal relationships of trust. PMID:20523732

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-12-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2014-04-01

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

  16. Biodiversity losses and conservation responses in the Anthropocene.

    PubMed

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

    2017-04-21

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2013-07-16

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-08-01

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

  19. Targeting global conservation funding to limit immediate biodiversity declines

    PubMed Central

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

    2013-01-01

    Inadequate funding levels are a major impediment to effective global biodiversity conservation and are likely associated with recent failures to meet United Nations biodiversity targets. Some countries are more severely underfunded than others and therefore represent urgent financial priorities. However, attempts to identify these highly underfunded countries have been hampered for decades by poor and incomplete data on actual spending, coupled with uncertainty and lack of consensus over the relative size of spending gaps. Here, we assemble a global database of annual conservation spending. We then develop a statistical model that explains 86% of variation in conservation expenditures, and use this to identify countries where funding is robustly below expected levels. The 40 most severely underfunded countries contain 32% of all threatened mammalian diversity and include neighbors in some of the world’s most biodiversity-rich areas (Sundaland, Wallacea, and Near Oceania). However, very modest increases in international assistance would achieve a large improvement in the relative adequacy of global conservation finance. Our results could therefore be quickly applied to limit immediate biodiversity losses at relatively little cost. PMID:23818619

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

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Grace, Marcus; Sharp, John

    2000-01-01

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

  1. A phylogenetic approach to conserving Amazonian biodiversity.

    PubMed

    López-Osorio, Federico; Miranda-Esquivel, Daniel Rafael

    2010-10-01

    Amazonia is a highly threatened rainforest that encompasses a major proportion of Earth's biological diversity. Our main goal was to establish conservation priorities for Amazonia's areas of endemism on the basis of measures of evolutionary distinctiveness. We considered two previously identified sets of areas of endemism. The first set consisted of eight large areas used traditionally in biogeographical studies: Belém, Tapajós, Xingu, Guiana, Rondônia, Imeri, Inambari, and Napo. The second set consisted of 16 smaller areas that were subdivisions of the larger areas. We assembled a data set of 50 phylogenies that represented 16 orders and 1715 distributional records. We identified priority conservation areas for the areas of endemism according to node-based metrics of evolutionary distinctiveness. We contrasted these results with priority areas identified on the basis of raw species richness and species endemicity. For the larger areas, we identified Guiana and Inambari as the first- and second-most important areas for conservation. The remaining areas in this first group scored half (e.g., Napo) or less than Guiana and Inambari on all indices. For the smaller areas, a subdivision of Guiana (i.e., Guyana and the Brazilian states of Roraima and Amazonas) was at the top of the ranking and was followed by a subdivision of Inambari (i.e., northwestern portion of Amazonas) and then another subdivision of Guiana (i.e., Suriname, French Guiana, and the Brazilian state of Amapá). The distinctiveness-based rankings of the priority of areas correlated directly with those derived from species richness and species endemicity. Current conservation strategies in Amazonia, although they rely on many other criteria apart from phylogeny, are focusing on the most important areas for conservation we identified here. © 2010 Society for Conservation Biology.

  2. Neglected wild life: Parasitic biodiversity as a conservation target☆

    PubMed Central

    Gómez, Andrés; Nichols, Elizabeth

    2013-01-01

    Parasites appropriate host resources to feed and/or to reproduce, and lower host fitness to varying degrees. As a consequence, they can negatively impact human and animal health, food production, economic trade, and biodiversity conservation. They can also be difficult to study and have historically been regarded as having little influence on ecosystem organization and function. Not surprisingly, parasitic biodiversity has to date not been the focus of much positive attention from the conservation community. However, a growing body of evidence demonstrates that parasites are extremely diverse, have key roles in ecological and evolutionary processes, and that infection may paradoxically result in ecosystem services of direct human relevance. Here we argue that wildlife parasites should be considered meaningful conservation targets no less relevant than their hosts. We discuss their numerical and functional importance, current conservation status, and outline a series of non-trivial challenges to consider before incorporating parasite biodiversity in conservation strategies. We also suggest that addressing the key knowledge gaps and communication deficiencies that currently impede broad discussions about parasite conservation requires input from wildlife parasitologists. PMID:24533340

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

    PubMed

    Czech, Brian

    2008-12-01

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

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

    PubMed

    Kiss, Agnes

    2004-05-01

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

  5. Model for quantifying the synergies between farmland biodiversity conservation and water protection at catchment scale.

    PubMed

    Helin, Janne; Hyytiäinen, Kari; Korpela, Eeva-Liisa; Kuussaari, Mikko

    2013-12-15

    This paper studies joint provision of two environmental non-market commodities related to agriculture: biodiversity conservation and water protection. We provide an optimising tool for analysing spatial dependencies of multifunctional agriculture at catchment scale. We show that efficiency gains can be achieved by spatial allocation and choice of the type of vegetation. In particular, inclusion of meadow nectar plants in the founding grass seed mixture of set-asides was found out to be an economically efficient measure to promote biodiversity and water protection on warm, steep slopes.

  6. Biodiversity, phylogeography, biogeography and conservation: lemurs as an example.

    PubMed

    Thalmann, Urs

    2007-01-01

    The lemurs of Madagascar represent a spectacular example of adaptive radiation among primates. Given the special setting under which they evolved (i.e. long isolation, geographical location, geological relief), they provide excellent models for study in many realms, and at different levels and scales, including diversity. At the same time, they occur in a 'hottest hot spot' region for biodiversity conservation. Although there is no single definition of biodiversity, the most commonly used units to measure biodiversity are species-species richness, species abundance and, for conservation purposes in particular, species endemism. However, what a species actually is or how, precisely, it should be defined are unresolved issues. Many species concepts have been proposed and several have been used in primatology in recent years. Nowadays, one of the more common approaches to measuring diversity, and eventually inferring species status, is to look at genetic diversity as reflected by mitochondrial DNA differences. Not enough attention has been paid, however, to the different levels at which genetic differences may occur. Lemurs provide instructive examples to highlight the questions involved in species recognition and definition. Using lemurs as examples, I will highlight the strengths and limitations of some analytical tools, including phylogeography and cladistic biogeography and, I will, in particular, emphasize the questions arising at the interface of scientific and conservation perceptions, both of which influence decisions in the field of biodiversity preservation. Copyright 2007 S. Karger AG, Basel.

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-01-01

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

  8. Scaling up from gardens: biodiversity conservation in urban environments.

    PubMed

    Goddard, Mark A; Dougill, Andrew J; Benton, Tim G

    2010-02-01

    As urbanisation increases globally and the natural environment becomes increasingly fragmented, the importance of urban green spaces for biodiversity conservation grows. In many countries, private gardens are a major component of urban green space and can provide considerable biodiversity benefits. Gardens and adjacent habitats form interconnected networks and a landscape ecology framework is necessary to understand the relationship between the spatial configuration of garden patches and their constituent biodiversity. A scale-dependent tension is apparent in garden management, whereby the individual garden is much smaller than the unit of management needed to retain viable populations. To overcome this, here we suggest mechanisms for encouraging 'wildlife-friendly' management of collections of gardens across scales from the neighbourhood to the city.

  9. Fish biodiversity and conservation in South America.

    PubMed

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

    2016-07-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2012-06-01

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

  11. Biodiversity conservation gaps in the Brazilian protected areas.

    PubMed

    Oliveira, Ubirajara; Soares-Filho, Britaldo Silveira; Paglia, Adriano Pereira; Brescovit, Antonio D; de Carvalho, Claudio J B; Silva, Dasniel Paiva; Rezende, Daniella T; Leite, Felipe Sá Fortes; Batista, João Aguiar Nogueira; Barbosa, João Paulo Peixoto Pena; Stehmann, João Renato; Ascher, John S; de Vasconcelos, Marcelo Ferreira; De Marco, Paulo; Löwenberg-Neto, Peter; Ferro, Viviane Gianluppi; Santos, Adalberto J

    2017-08-22

    Although Brazil is a megadiverse country and thus a conservation priority, no study has yet quantified conservation gaps in the Brazilian protected areas (PAs) using extensive empirical data. Here, we evaluate the degree of biodiversity protection and knowledge within all the Brazilian PAs through a gap analysis of vertebrate, arthropod and angiosperm occurrences and phylogenetic data. Our results show that the knowledge on biodiversity in most Brazilian PAs remain scant as 71% of PAs have less than 0.01 species records per km(2). Almost 55% of Brazilian species and about 40% of evolutionary lineages are not found in PAs, while most species have less than 30% of their geographic distribution within PAs. Moreover, the current PA network fails to protect the majority of endemic species. Most importantly, these results are similar for all taxonomic groups analysed here. The methods and results of our countrywide assessment are suggested to help design further inventories in order to map and secure the key biodiversity of the Brazilian PAs. In addition, our study illustrates the most common biodiversity knowledge shortfalls in the tropics.

  12. Global mammal distributions, biodiversity hotspots, and conservation

    PubMed Central

    Ceballos, Gerardo; Ehrlich, Paul R.

    2006-01-01

    Hotspots, which have played a central role in the selection of sites for reserves, require careful rethinking. We carried out a global examination of distributions of all nonmarine mammals to determine patterns of species richness, endemism, and endangerment, and to evaluate the degree of congruence among hotspots of these three measures of diversity in mammals. We then compare congruence of hotspots in two animal groups (mammals and birds) to assess the generality of these patterns. We defined hotspots as the richest 2.5% of cells in a global equal-area grid comparable to 1° latitude × 1° longitude. Hotspots of species richness, “endemism,” and extinction threat were noncongruent. Only 1% of cells and 16% of species were common to the three types of mammalian hotspots. Congruence increased with increases in both the geographic scope of the analysis and the percentage of cells defined as being hotspots. The within-mammal hotspot noncongruence was similar to the pattern recently found for birds. Thus, assigning global conservation priorities based on hotspots is at best a limited strategy. PMID:17164331

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

    PubMed

    Ceballos, Gerardo; Ehrlich, Paul R

    2006-12-19

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-09-01

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

  15. Local land-use planning to conserve biodiversity: planners' perspectives on what works.

    PubMed

    Stokes, David L; Hanson, Marian F; Oaks, Deborah D; Straub, Jaime E; Ponio, Aileen V

    2010-04-01

    Because habitat loss due to urbanization is a primary threat to biodiversity, and land-use decisions in urbanizing areas are mainly made at the local level, land-use planning by municipal planning departments has a potentially important--but largely unrealized--role in conserving biodiversity. To understand planners' perspectives on the factors that facilitate and impede biodiversity conservation in local planning, we interviewed directors of 17 municipal planning departments in the greater Seattle (Washington, U.S.A.) area and compared responses of planners from similar-sized jurisdictions that were "high" and "low performing" with respect to incorporation of biodiversity conservation in local planning. Planners from low-performing jurisdictions regarded mandates from higher governmental levels as the primary drivers of biodiversity conservation, whereas those from high-performing jurisdictions regarded community values as the main drivers, although they also indicated that mandates were important. Biodiversity conservation was associated with presence of local conservation flagship elements (e.g., salmonids) and human-centered benefits of biodiversity conservation (e.g., quality of life). Planners from high- and low-performing jurisdictions favored different planning mechanisms for biodiversity conservation, perhaps reflecting differences in funding and staffing. High performers reported more collaborations with other entities on biodiversity issues. Planners' comments indicated that the term biodiversity may be problematic in the context of local planning. The action most planners recommended to increase biodiversity conservation in local planning was public education. These results suggest that to advance biodiversity conservation in local land-use planning, conservation biologists should investigate and educate the public about local conservation flagships and human benefits of local biodiversity, work to raise ecological literacy and explain biodiversity more

  16. Photosharing websites may improve Hemiptera biodiversity knowledge and conservation

    PubMed Central

    Goula, Marta; Sesma, José-Manuel; Vivas, Luis

    2013-01-01

    Abstract Internet photosharing websites is a very recent and powerful tool for the study of biodiversity, and a meeting point of general public fond of nature and professional naturalists. The article discusses when an uploaded picture is scientifically valuable, and the benefits of structured hosting websites for the most fruitful information retrieval. Examples are given of faunistic, biological, ecological and conservation results concerning Hemiptera provided by information download from photosharing websites. PMID:24003310

  17. Increasing participation in incentive programs for biodiversity conservation.

    PubMed

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

    2013-07-01

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

  18. Cranes, Crops and Conservation: Understanding Human Perceptions of Biodiversity Conservation in South Korea's Civilian Control Zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2011-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2011-01-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2014-01-01

    Biodiversity loss—one of the most prominent forms of modern environmental change—has been heavily driven by terrestrial habitat loss and, in particular, the spread and intensification of agriculture. Expanding agricultural land-use has led to the search for strong conservation strategies, with some suggesting that biodiversity conservation in agriculture is best maximized by reducing local management intensity, such as fertilizer and pesticide application. Others highlight the importance of landscape-level approaches that incorporate natural or semi-natural areas in landscapes surrounding farms. Here, we show that both of these practices are valuable to the conservation of biodiversity, and that either local or landscape factors can be most crucial to conservation planning depending on which types of organisms one wishes to save. We performed a quantitative review of 266 observations taken from 31 studies that compared the impacts of localized (within farm) management strategies and landscape complexity (around farms) on the richness and abundance of plant, invertebrate and vertebrate species in agro-ecosystems. While both factors significantly impacted species richness, the richness of sessile plants increased with less-intensive local management, but did not significantly respond to landscape complexity. By contrast, the richness of mobile vertebrates increased with landscape complexity, but did not significantly increase with less-intensive local management. Invertebrate richness and abundance responded to both factors. Our analyses point to clear differences in how various groups of organisms respond to differing scales of management, and suggest that preservation of multiple taxonomic groups will require multiple scales of conservation. PMID:25100703

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

    PubMed

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

    2014-09-22

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

  2. Assessing the Cost of Global Biodiversity and Conservation Knowledge

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2008-06-01

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

  4. Can retention forestry help conserve biodiversity? A meta-analysis

    PubMed Central

    Fedrowitz, Katja; Koricheva, Julia; Baker, Susan C; Lindenmayer, David B; Palik, Brian; Rosenvald, Raul; Beese, William; Franklin, Jerry F; Kouki, Jari; Macdonald, Ellen; Messier, Christian; Sverdrup-Thygeson, Anne; Gustafsson, Lena

    2014-01-01

    consistent among taxonomic groups for forest and open-habitat species, respectively. Synthesis and applications. Our meta-analysis provides support for wider use of retention forestry since it moderates negative harvesting impacts on biodiversity. Hence, it is a promising approach for integrating biodiversity conservation and production forestry, although identifying optimal solutions between these two goals may need further attention. Nevertheless, retention forestry will not substitute for conservation actions targeting certain highly specialized species associated with forest-interior or open-habitat conditions. Our meta-analysis provides support for wider use of retention forestry since it moderates negative harvesting impacts on biodiversity. Hence, it is a promising approach for integrating biodiversity conservation and production forestry, although identifying optimal solutions between these two goals may need further attention. Nevertheless, retention forestry will not substitute for conservation actions targeting certain highly specialized species associated with forest-interior or open-habitat conditions. PMID:25552747

  5. Can retention forestry help conserve biodiversity? A meta-analysis.

    PubMed

    Fedrowitz, Katja; Koricheva, Julia; Baker, Susan C; Lindenmayer, David B; Palik, Brian; Rosenvald, Raul; Beese, William; Franklin, Jerry F; Kouki, Jari; Macdonald, Ellen; Messier, Christian; Sverdrup-Thygeson, Anne; Gustafsson, Lena

    2014-12-01

    consistent among taxonomic groups for forest and open-habitat species, respectively. Synthesis and applications. Our meta-analysis provides support for wider use of retention forestry since it moderates negative harvesting impacts on biodiversity. Hence, it is a promising approach for integrating biodiversity conservation and production forestry, although identifying optimal solutions between these two goals may need further attention. Nevertheless, retention forestry will not substitute for conservation actions targeting certain highly specialized species associated with forest-interior or open-habitat conditions. Our meta-analysis provides support for wider use of retention forestry since it moderates negative harvesting impacts on biodiversity. Hence, it is a promising approach for integrating biodiversity conservation and production forestry, although identifying optimal solutions between these two goals may need further attention. Nevertheless, retention forestry will not substitute for conservation actions targeting certain highly specialized species associated with forest-interior or open-habitat conditions.

  6. Marine biodiversity hotspots and conservation priorities for tropical reefs.

    PubMed

    Roberts, Callum M; McClean, Colin J; Veron, John E N; Hawkins, Julie P; Allen, Gerald R; McAllister, Don E; Mittermeier, Cristina G; Schueler, Frederick W; Spalding, Mark; Wells, Fred; Vynne, Carly; Werner, Timothy B

    2002-02-15

    Coral reefs are the most biologically diverse of shallow water marine ecosystems but are being degraded worldwide by human activities and climate warming. Analyses of the geographic ranges of 3235 species of reef fish, corals, snails, and lobsters revealed that between 7.2% and 53.6% of each taxon have highly restricted ranges, rendering them vulnerable to extinction. Restricted-range species are clustered into centers of endemism, like those described for terrestrial taxa. The 10 richest centers of endemism cover 15.8% of the world's coral reefs (0.012% of the oceans) but include between 44.8 and 54.2% of the restricted-range species. Many occur in regions where reefs are being severely affected by people, potentially leading to numerous extinctions. Threatened centers of endemism are major biodiversity hotspots, and conservation efforts targeted toward them could help avert the loss of tropical reef biodiversity.

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

    PubMed Central

    Lessmann, Janeth; Muñoz, Jesús; Bonaccorso, Elisa

    2014-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

    Lessmann, Janeth; Muñoz, Jesús; Bonaccorso, Elisa

    2014-06-01

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

  9. How Should Beta-Diversity Inform Biodiversity Conservation?

    PubMed

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

    2016-01-01

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

  10. How effective are biodiversity conservation payments in Mexico?

    PubMed

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

    2015-01-01

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

  11. Phylogenetic diversity (PD) and biodiversity conservation: some bioinformatics challenges.

    PubMed

    Faith, Daniel P; Baker, Andrew M

    2007-02-17

    Biodiversity conservation addresses information challenges through estimations encapsulated in measures of diversity. A quantitative measure of phylogenetic diversity, "PD", has been defined as the minimum total length of all the phylogenetic branches required to span a given set of taxa on the phylogenetic tree (Faith 1992a). While a recent paper incorrectly characterizes PD as not including information about deeper phylogenetic branches, PD applications over the past decade document the proper incorporation of shared deep branches when assessing the total PD of a set of taxa. Current PD applications to macroinvertebrate taxa in streams of New South Wales, Australia illustrate the practical importance of this definition. Phylogenetic lineages, often corresponding to new, "cryptic", taxa, are restricted to a small number of stream localities. A recent case of human impact causing loss of taxa in one locality implies a higher PD value for another locality, because it now uniquely represents a deeper branch. This molecular-based phylogenetic pattern supports the use of DNA barcoding programs for biodiversity conservation planning. Here, PD assessments side-step the contentious use of barcoding-based "species" designations. Bio-informatics challenges include combining different phylogenetic evidence, optimization problems for conservation planning, and effective integration of phylogenetic information with environmental and socio-economic data.

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

    PubMed

    Ilg, Christiane; Oertli, Beat

    2017-04-01

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

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gill, M.; Svoboda, M.

    2012-12-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-01-01

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

  16. Satellite remote sensing, biodiversity research and conservation of the future

    PubMed Central

    Pettorelli, Nathalie; Safi, Kamran; Turner, Woody

    2014-01-01

    Assessing and predicting ecosystem responses to global environmental change and its impacts on human well-being are high priority targets for the scientific community. The potential for synergies between remote sensing science and ecology, especially satellite remote sensing and conservation biology, has been highlighted by many in the past. Yet, the two research communities have only recently begun to coordinate their agendas. Such synchronization is the key to improving the potential for satellite data effectively to support future environmental management decision-making processes. With this themed issue, we aim to illustrate how integrating remote sensing into ecological research promotes a better understanding of the mechanisms shaping current changes in biodiversity patterns and improves conservation efforts. Added benefits include fostering innovation, generating new research directions in both disciplines and the development of new satellite remote sensing products. PMID:24733945

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

    PubMed

    Brook, Barry W; Bradshaw, Corey J A

    2015-06-01

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

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

    PubMed

    Phalan, Ben; Green, Rhys; Balmford, Andrew

    2014-04-05

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

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

    PubMed Central

    Phalan, Ben; Green, Rhys; Balmford, Andrew

    2014-01-01

    Increasing agricultural productivity to ‘close yield gaps’ creates both perils and possibilities for biodiversity conservation. Yield increases often have negative impacts on species within farmland, but at the same time could potentially make it more feasible to minimize further cropland expansion into natural habitats. We combine global data on yield gaps, projected future production of maize, rice and wheat, the distributions of birds and their estimated sensitivity to changes in crop yields to map where it might be most beneficial for bird conservation to close yield gaps as part of a land-sparing strategy, and where doing so might be most damaging. Closing yield gaps to attainable levels to meet projected demand in 2050 could potentially help spare an area equivalent to that of the Indian subcontinent. Increasing yields this much on existing farmland would inevitably reduce its biodiversity, and therefore we advocate efforts both to constrain further increases in global food demand, and to identify the least harmful ways of increasing yields. The land-sparing potential of closing yield gaps will not be realized without specific mechanisms to link yield increases to habitat protection (and restoration), and therefore we suggest that conservationists, farmers, crop scientists and policy-makers collaborate to explore promising mechanisms. PMID:24535392

  20. Conservation laws and thermodynamic efficiencies.

    PubMed

    Benenti, Giuliano; Casati, Giulio; Wang, Jiao

    2013-02-15

    We show that generic systems with a single relevant conserved quantity reach the Carnot efficiency in the thermodynamic limit. Such a general result is illustrated by means of a diatomic chain of hard-point elastically colliding particles where the total momentum is the only relevant conserved quantity.

  1. Incorporating Conservation Zone Effectiveness for Protecting Biodiversity in Marine Planning

    PubMed Central

    Makino, Azusa; Klein, Carissa J.; Beger, Maria; Jupiter, Stacy D.; Possingham, Hugh P.

    2013-01-01

    Establishing different types of conservation zones is becoming commonplace. However, spatial prioritization methods that can accommodate multiple zones are poorly understood in theory and application. It is typically assumed that management regulations across zones have differential levels of effectiveness (“zone effectiveness”) for biodiversity protection, but the influence of zone effectiveness on achieving conservation targets has not yet been explored. Here, we consider the zone effectiveness of three zones: permanent closure, partial protection, and open, for planning for the protection of five different marine habitats in the Vatu-i-Ra Seascape, Fiji. We explore the impact of differential zone effectiveness on the location and costs of conservation priorities. We assume that permanent closure zones are fully effective at protecting all habitats, open zones do not contribute towards the conservation targets and partial protection zones lie between these two extremes. We use four different estimates for zone effectiveness and three different estimates for zone cost of the partial protection zone. To enhance the practical utility of the approach, we also explore how much of each traditional fishing ground can remain open for fishing while still achieving conservation targets. Our results show that all of the high priority areas for permanent closure zones would not be a high priority when the zone effectiveness of the partial protection zone is equal to that of permanent closure zones. When differential zone effectiveness and costs are considered, the resulting marine protected area network consequently increases in size, with more area allocated to permanent closure zones to meet conservation targets. By distributing the loss of fishing opportunity equitably among local communities, we find that 84–88% of each traditional fishing ground can be left open while still meeting conservation targets. Finally, we summarize the steps for developing marine zoning

  2. Incorporating conservation zone effectiveness for protecting biodiversity in marine planning.

    PubMed

    Makino, Azusa; Klein, Carissa J; Beger, Maria; Jupiter, Stacy D; Possingham, Hugh P

    2013-01-01

    Establishing different types of conservation zones is becoming commonplace. However, spatial prioritization methods that can accommodate multiple zones are poorly understood in theory and application. It is typically assumed that management regulations across zones have differential levels of effectiveness ("zone effectiveness") for biodiversity protection, but the influence of zone effectiveness on achieving conservation targets has not yet been explored. Here, we consider the zone effectiveness of three zones: permanent closure, partial protection, and open, for planning for the protection of five different marine habitats in the Vatu-i-Ra Seascape, Fiji. We explore the impact of differential zone effectiveness on the location and costs of conservation priorities. We assume that permanent closure zones are fully effective at protecting all habitats, open zones do not contribute towards the conservation targets and partial protection zones lie between these two extremes. We use four different estimates for zone effectiveness and three different estimates for zone cost of the partial protection zone. To enhance the practical utility of the approach, we also explore how much of each traditional fishing ground can remain open for fishing while still achieving conservation targets. Our results show that all of the high priority areas for permanent closure zones would not be a high priority when the zone effectiveness of the partial protection zone is equal to that of permanent closure zones. When differential zone effectiveness and costs are considered, the resulting marine protected area network consequently increases in size, with more area allocated to permanent closure zones to meet conservation targets. By distributing the loss of fishing opportunity equitably among local communities, we find that 84-88% of each traditional fishing ground can be left open while still meeting conservation targets. Finally, we summarize the steps for developing marine zoning that

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

    PubMed

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

    2014-07-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-12-01

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

  5. The effectiveness of Iberian protected areas in conserving terrestrial biodiversity.

    PubMed

    Araújo, Miguel B; Lobo, Jorge M; Moreno, Juan C

    2007-12-01

    The Iberian Peninsula harbors about 50% of European plant and terrestrial vertebrate species and more than 30% of European endemic species. Despite the global recognition of its importance, the selection of protected areas has been ad hoc and the effectiveness of such choices has rarely been assessed. We compiled the most comprehensive distributional data set of Iberian terrestrial plant and vertebrate species available to date and used it to assess the degree of species representation within existing protected areas. Existing protected areas in Spain and Portugal reasonably represented the plant and animal species we considered (73-98%). Nevertheless, species of some groups (amphibians, reptiles, birds, and gymnosperms) did not accumulate in protected areas at a rate higher than expected by chance (p > 0.05). We determined that to conserve all vertebrate and plant species in the Iberian Peninsula, at least 36 additional areas are needed. Selection of additional areas for conservation would be facilitated if such areas coincided with sites of community importance (SCI) designated under the European Commission Habitats Directive. Additional areas required for full representation of the selected plant and animal species all coincide with SCI in Spain. Nevertheless, the degree of coincidence varies between 0.3% and 74.6%, and there is a possibility that important areas for conservation occur outside the SCI. Our results support the view that current SCI can be used for prioritization of areas for conservation, but a systematic reevaluation of conservation priorities in Spain and Portugal would be necessary to ensure that effective conservation of one of European's most important biodiversity regions is achieved.

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

    PubMed

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

    2014-01-01

    By addressing several key features overlooked in previous studies, i.e. human disturbance, integration of ecosystem- and species-level conservation features, and principles of complementarity and representativeness, we present the first national-scale systematic conservation planning for China to determine the optimized spatial priorities for biodiversity conservation. We compiled a spatial database on the distributions of ecosystem- and species-level conservation features, and modeled a human disturbance index (HDI) by aggregating information using several socioeconomic proxies. We ran Marxan with two scenarios (HDI-ignored and HDI-considered) to investigate the effects of human disturbance, and explored the geographic patterns of the optimized spatial conservation priorities. Compared to when HDI was ignored, the HDI-considered scenario resulted in (1) a marked reduction (∼9%) in the total HDI score and a slight increase (∼7%) in the total area of the portfolio of priority units, (2) a significant increase (∼43%) in the total irreplaceable area and (3) more irreplaceable units being identified in almost all environmental zones and highly-disturbed provinces. Thus the inclusion of human disturbance is essential for cost-effective priority-setting. Attention should be targeted to the areas that are characterized as moderately-disturbed, <2,000 m in altitude, and/or intermediately- to extremely-rugged in terrain to identify potentially important regions for implementing cost-effective conservation. We delineated 23 primary large-scale priority areas that are significant for conserving China's biodiversity, but those isolated priority units in disturbed regions are in more urgent need of conservation actions so as to prevent immediate and severe biodiversity loss. This study presents a spatially optimized national-scale portfolio of conservation priorities--effectively representing the overall biodiversity of China while minimizing conflicts with economic

  7. Optimized Spatial Priorities for Biodiversity Conservation in China: A Systematic Conservation Planning Perspective

    PubMed Central

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

    2014-01-01

    By addressing several key features overlooked in previous studies, i.e. human disturbance, integration of ecosystem- and species-level conservation features, and principles of complementarity and representativeness, we present the first national-scale systematic conservation planning for China to determine the optimized spatial priorities for biodiversity conservation. We compiled a spatial database on the distributions of ecosystem- and species-level conservation features, and modeled a human disturbance index (HDI) by aggregating information using several socioeconomic proxies. We ran Marxan with two scenarios (HDI-ignored and HDI-considered) to investigate the effects of human disturbance, and explored the geographic patterns of the optimized spatial conservation priorities. Compared to when HDI was ignored, the HDI-considered scenario resulted in (1) a marked reduction (∼9%) in the total HDI score and a slight increase (∼7%) in the total area of the portfolio of priority units, (2) a significant increase (∼43%) in the total irreplaceable area and (3) more irreplaceable units being identified in almost all environmental zones and highly-disturbed provinces. Thus the inclusion of human disturbance is essential for cost-effective priority-setting. Attention should be targeted to the areas that are characterized as moderately-disturbed, <2,000 m in altitude, and/or intermediately- to extremely-rugged in terrain to identify potentially important regions for implementing cost-effective conservation. We delineated 23 primary large-scale priority areas that are significant for conserving China's biodiversity, but those isolated priority units in disturbed regions are in more urgent need of conservation actions so as to prevent immediate and severe biodiversity loss. This study presents a spatially optimized national-scale portfolio of conservation priorities – effectively representing the overall biodiversity of China while minimizing conflicts with economic

  8. Conservation Covenants on Private Land: Issues with Measuring and Achieving Biodiversity Outcomes in Australia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fitzsimons, James A.; Carr, C. Ben

    2014-09-01

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

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

    PubMed

    Fitzsimons, James A; Carr, C Ben

    2014-09-01

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

  10. Ecological-economic optimization of biodiversity conservation under climate change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wintle, Brendan A.; Bekessy, Sarah A.; Keith, David A.; van Wilgen, Brian W.; Cabeza, Mar; Schröder, Boris; Carvalho, Silvia B.; Falcucci, Alessandra; Maiorano, Luigi; Regan, Tracey J.; Rondinini, Carlo; Boitani, Luigi; Possingham, Hugh P.

    2011-10-01

    Substantial investment in climate change research has led to dire predictions of the impacts and risks to biodiversity. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change fourth assessment report cites 28,586 studies demonstrating significant biological changes in terrestrial systems. Already high extinction rates, driven primarily by habitat loss, are predicted to increase under climate change. Yet there is little specific advice or precedent in the literature to guide climate adaptation investment for conserving biodiversity within realistic economic constraints. Here we present a systematic ecological and economic analysis of a climate adaptation problem in one of the world's most species-rich and threatened ecosystems: the South African fynbos. We discover a counterintuitive optimal investment strategy that switches twice between options as the available adaptation budget increases. We demonstrate that optimal investment is nonlinearly dependent on available resources, making the choice of how much to invest as important as determining where to invest and what actions to take. Our study emphasizes the importance of a sound analytical framework for prioritizing adaptation investments. Integrating ecological predictions in an economic decision framework will help support complex choices between adaptation options under severe uncertainty. Our prioritization method can be applied at any scale to minimize species loss and to evaluate the robustness of decisions to uncertainty about key assumptions.

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-02-19

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

  12. How Effective Are Biodiversity Conservation Payments in Mexico?

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

    We assess the additional forest cover protected by 13 rural communities located in the southern state of Chiapas, Mexico, as a result of the economic incentives received through the country's national program of payments for biodiversity conservation. We use spatially explicit data at the intra-community level to define a credible counterfactual of conservation outcomes. We use covariate-matching specifications associated with spatially explicit variables and difference-in-difference estimators to determine the treatment effect. We estimate that the additional conservation represents between 12 and 14.7 percent of forest area enrolled in the program in comparison to control areas. Despite this high degree of additionality, we also observe lack of compliance in some plots participating in the PES program. This lack of compliance casts doubt on the ability of payments alone to guarantee long-term additionality in context of high deforestation rates, even with an augmented program budget or extension of participation to communities not yet enrolled. PMID:25807118

  13. Major conservation policy issues for biodiversity in Oceania.

    PubMed

    Kingsford, R T; Watson, J E M; Lundquist, C J; Venter, O; Hughes, L; Johnston, E L; Atherton, J; Gawel, M; Keith, D A; Mackey, B G; Morley, C; Possingham, H P; Raynor, B; Recher, H F; Wilson, K A

    2009-08-01

    Oceania is a diverse region encompassing Australia, Melanesia, Micronesia, New Zealand, and Polynesia, and it contains six of the world's 39 hotspots of diversity. It has a poor record for extinctions, particularly for birds on islands and mammals. Major causes include habitat loss and degradation, invasive species, and overexploitation. We identified six major threatening processes (habitat loss and degradation, invasive species, climate change, overexploitation, pollution, and disease) based on a comprehensive review of the literature and for each developed a set of conservation policies. Many policies reflect the urgent need to deal with the effects of burgeoning human populations (expected to increase significantly in the region) on biodiversity. There is considerable difference in resources for conservation, including people and available scientific information, which are heavily biased toward more developed countries in Oceania. Most scientific publications analyzed for four threats (habitat loss, invasive species, overexploitation, and pollution) are from developed countries: 88.6% of Web of Science publications were from Australia (53.7%), New Zealand (24.3%), and Hawaiian Islands (10.5%). Many island states have limited resources or expertise. Even countries that do (e.g., Australia, New Zealand) have ongoing and emerging significant challenges, particularly with the interactive effects of climate change. Oceania will require the implementation of effective policies for conservation if the region's poor record on extinctions is not to continue.

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-04-01

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

  15. The efficiency of voluntary incentive policies for preventing biodiversity loss

    Treesearch

    David J. Lewis; Andrew J. Plantinga; Erik Nelson; Stephen. Polasky

    2011-01-01

    Habitat loss is a primary cause of loss of biodiversity but conserving habitat for species presents challenges. Land parcels differ in their ability to produce returns for landowners and landowners may have private information about the value of the land to them. Land parcels also differ in the type and quality of habitat and the spatial pattern of land use across...

  16. Anthropogenic disturbances jeopardize biodiversity conservation within tropical rainforest reserves

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

    Anthropogenic disturbances affecting tropical forest reserves have been documented, but their ecological long-term cumulative effects are poorly understood. Habitat fragmentation and defaunation are two major anthropogenic threats to the integrity of tropical reserves. Based on a long-term (four decades) study, we document how these disturbances synergistically disrupt ecological processes and imperil biodiversity conservation and ecosystem functioning at Los Tuxtlas, the northernmost tropical rainforest reserve in the Americas. Deforestation around this reserve has reduced the reserve to a medium-sized fragment (640 ha), leading to an increased frequency of canopy-gap formation. In addition, hunting and habitat loss have caused the decline or local extinction of medium and large herbivores. Combining empirical, experimental, and modeling approaches, we support the hypothesis that such disturbances produced a demographic explosion of the long-lived (≈120 y old, maximum height of 7 m) understory palm Astrocaryum mexicanum, whose population has increased from 1,243–4,058 adult individuals per hectare in only 39 y (annual growth rate of ca. 3%). Faster gap formation increased understory light availability, enhancing seed production and the growth of immature palms, whereas release from mammalian herbivory and trampling increased survival of seedlings and juveniles. In turn, the palm’s demographic explosion was followed by a reduction of tree species diversity, changing forest composition, altering the relative contribution of trees to forest biomass, and disrupting litterfall dynamics. We highlight how indirect anthropogenic disturbances (e.g., palm proliferation) on otherwise protected areas threaten tropical conservation, a phenomenon that is currently eroding the planet’s richest repositories of biodiversity. PMID:27071122

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-05-10

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

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

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Venuste, Nsengimana; Olivier, Habimana; Valens, Ngarukiye

    2017-01-01

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

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

    Treesearch

    Jonathan. Thompson

    2005-01-01

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

  20. Linking biodiversity to ecosystem function: Implications for conservation ecology

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Schwartz, M.W.; Brigham, C.A.; Hoeksema, J.D.; Lyons, K.G.; Mills, M.H.; van Mantgem, P.

    2000-01-01

    stability has not been investigated. Despite the recent rush to embrace the linkage between biodiversity and ecosystem function, we find little support for the hypothesis that there is a strong dependence of ecosystem function on the full complement of diversity within sites. Given this observation, the conservation community should take a cautious view of endorsing this linkage as a model to promote conservation goals.

  1. Linking biodiversity to ecosystem function: implications for conservation ecology.

    PubMed

    Schwartz, M W; Brigham, C A; Hoeksema, J D; Lyons, K G; Mills, M H; van Mantgem, P J

    2000-02-01

    stability has not been investigated. Despite the recent rush to embrace the linkage between biodiversity and ecosystem function, we find little support for the hypothesis that there is a strong dependence of ecosystem function on the full complement of diversity within sites. Given this observation, the conservation community should take a cautious view of endorsing this linkage as a model to promote conservation goals.

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

    PubMed

    Piorski, N M; Sanches, A; Carvalho-Costa, L F; Hatanaka, T; Carrillo-Avila, M; Freitas, P D; Galetti, P M

    2008-11-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2017-07-28

    Recently, the European Commission adopted a new strategy to halt the loss of biodiversity. Member states are expected to favour a more effective collection and redistribution of European Union (EU) funds under the current Multiannual Financial Framework for 2014-2020. Because of the large spatial variation in the distribution of biodiversity and conservation needs at the continental scale, EU instruments should ensure that countries with higher biodiversity values get more funds and resources for the conservation of this biodiversity than other countries. We assess the association between conservation investments and biodiversity values across the member states, accounting for a variety of conservation investment indicators, taxonomic groups (including groups of plants, vertebrates and invertebrates) and biodiversity value indicators. In general, we have found good overall associations between conservation investments and biodiversity variables. However, some mismatches were found in countries receiving more (or less) investments than expected based on their biodiversity values. We also found that the extensive use of birds as unique indicators of conservation effectiveness may be misleading. These results can provide insight to policymakers to aid future decisions regarding funding allocation, allowing a better redistribution of EU funds. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2013-01-01

    Agricultural frontiers are dynamic environments characterized by the conversion of native habitats to agriculture. Because they are currently concentrated in diverse tropical habitats, agricultural frontiers are areas where the largest number of species is exposed to hazardous land management practices, including pesticide use. Focusing on the Amazonian frontier, we show that producers have varying access to resources, knowledge, control and reward mechanisms to improve land management practices. With poor education and no technical support, pesticide use by smallholders sharply deviated from agronomical recommendations, tending to overutilization of hazardous compounds. By contrast, with higher levels of technical expertise and resources, and aiming at more restrictive markets, large-scale producers adhered more closely to technical recommendations and even voluntarily replaced more hazardous compounds. However, the ecological footprint increased significantly over time because of increased dosage or because formulations that are less toxic to humans may be more toxic to other biodiversity. Frontier regions appear to be unique in terms of the conflicts between production and conservation, and the necessary pesticide risk management and risk reduction can only be achieved through responsibility-sharing by diverse stakeholders, including governmental and intergovernmental organizations, NGOs, financial institutions, pesticide and agricultural industries, producers, academia and consumers. PMID:23610177

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

    PubMed

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

    2013-06-05

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-12-01

    Xishuangbanna is on the northern margins of tropical Asia in southwestern China and has the largest area of tropical forest remaining in the country. It is in the Indo-Burma hotspot and contains 16% of China's vascular flora in <0.2% of the country's total area (19,690 km(2) ). Rapid expansion of monoculture crops in the last 20 years, particularly rubber, threatens this region's exceptional biodiversity. To understand the effects of land-use change and collection on orchid species diversity and determine protection priorities, we conducted systematic field surveys, observed markets, interviewed orchid collectors, and then determined the conservation status of all orchids. We identified 426 orchid species in 115 genera in Xishuangbanna: 31% of all orchid species that occur in China. Species richness was highest at 1000-1200 m elevation. Three orchid species were assessed as possibly extinct in the wild, 15 as critically endangered, 82 as endangered, 124 as vulnerable, 186 as least concern, and 16 as data deficient. Declines over 20 years in harvested species suggested over-collection was the major threat, and utility value (i.e., medicinal or ornamental value) was significantly related to endangerment. Expansion of rubber tree plantations was less of a threat to orchids than to other taxa because only 75 orchid species (17.6%) occurred below the 1000-m-elevation ceiling for rubber cultivation, and most of these (46) occurred in nature reserves. However, climate change is projected to lift this ceiling to around 1300 m by 2050, and the limited area at higher elevations reduces the potential for upslope range expansion. The Xishuangbanna Tropical Botanical Garden is committed to achieving zero plant extinctions in Xishuangbanna, and orchids are a high priority. Appropriate in and ex situ conservation strategies, including new protected areas and seed banking, have been developed for every threatened orchid species and are being implemented.

  7. A standard lexicon for biodiversity conservation: unified classifications of threats and actions.

    PubMed

    Salafsky, Nick; Salzer, Daniel; Stattersfield, Alison J; Hilton-Taylor, Craig; Neugarten, Rachel; Butchart, Stuart H M; Collen, Ben; Cox, Neil; Master, Lawrence L; O'Connor, Sheila; Wilkie, David

    2008-08-01

    An essential foundation of any science is a standard lexicon. Any given conservation project can be described in terms of the biodiversity targets, direct threats, contributing factors at the project site, and the conservation actions that the project team is employing to change the situation. These common elements can be linked in a causal chain, which represents a theory of change about how the conservation actions are intended to bring about desired project outcomes. If project teams want to describe and share their work and learn from one another, they need a standard and precise lexicon to specifically describe each node along this chain. To date, there have been several independent efforts to develop standard classifications for the direct threats that affect biodiversity and the conservation actions required to counteract these threats. Recognizing that it is far more effective to have only one accepted global scheme, we merged these separate efforts into unified classifications of threats and actions, which we present here. Each classification is a hierarchical listing of terms and associated definitions. The classifications are comprehensive and exclusive at the upper levels of the hierarchy, expandable at the lower levels, and simple, consistent, and scalable at all levels. We tested these classifications by applying them post hoc to 1191 threatened bird species and 737 conservation projects. Almost all threats and actions could be assigned to the new classification systems, save for some cases lacking detailed information. Furthermore, the new classification systems provided an improved way of analyzing and comparing information across projects when compared with earlier systems. We believe that widespread adoption of these classifications will help practitioners more systematically identify threats and appropriate actions, managers to more efficiently set priorities and allocate resources, and most important, facilitate cross-project learning and the

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

    PubMed

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

    2011-08-23

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2011-01-01

    In the Luangwa Valley, Zambia, persistent poverty and hunger present linked challenges to rural development and biodiversity conservation. Both household coping strategies and larger-scale economic development efforts have caused severe natural resource degradation that limits future economic opportunities and endangers ecosystem services. A model based on a business infrastructure has been developed to promote and maintain sustainable agricultural and natural resource management practices, leading to direct and indirect conservation outcomes. The Community Markets for Conservation (COMACO) model operates primarily with communities surrounding national parks, strengthening conservation benefits produced by these protected areas. COMACO first identifies the least food-secure households and trains them in sustainable agricultural practices that minimize threats to natural resources while meeting household needs. In addition, COMACO identifies people responsible for severe natural resource depletion and trains them to generate alternative income sources. In an effort to maintain compliance with these practices, COMACO provides extension support and access to high-value markets that would otherwise be inaccessible to participants. Because the model is continually evolving via adaptive management, success or failure of the model as a whole is difficult to quantify at this early stage. We therefore test specific hypotheses and present data documenting the stabilization of previously declining wildlife populations; the meeting of thresholds of productivity that give COMACO access to stable, high-value markets and progress toward economic self-sufficiency; and the adoption of sustainable agricultural practices by participants and other community members. Together, these findings describe a unique, business-oriented model for poverty alleviation, food production, and biodiversity conservation. PMID:21873184

  10. A lack of response of the financial behaviors of biodiversity conservation nonprofits to changing economic conditions

    PubMed Central

    Larson, Eric R; Boyer, Alison G; Armsworth, Paul R

    2014-01-01

    The effectiveness of conservation organizations is determined in part by how they adapt to changing conditions. Over the previous decade, economic conditions in the United States (US) showed marked variation including a period of rapid growth followed by a major recession. We examine how biodiversity conservation nonprofits in the US responded to these changes through their financial behaviors, focusing on a sample of 90 biodiversity conservation nonprofits and the largest individual organization (The Nature Conservancy; TNC). For the 90 sampled organizations, an analysis of financial ratios derived from tax return data revealed little response to economic conditions. Similarly, more detailed examination of conservation expenditures and land acquisition practices of TNC revealed only one significant relationship with economic conditions: TNC accepted a greater proportion of conservation easements as donated in more difficult economic conditions. Our results suggest that the financial behaviors of US biodiversity conservation nonprofits are unresponsive to economic conditions. PMID:25512840

  11. Status and trends in Arctic biodiversity - Synthesis: implications for conservation

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Arctic biodiversity – the multitude of species and ecosystems in the land north of the tree line together with the Arctic Ocean and adjacent seas – is an irreplaceable cultural, aesthetic, scientific, ecological, economic and spiritual asset. For Arctic peoples, biodiversity has been the very basis ...

  12. BIODIVERSITY CONSERVATION INCENTIVE PROGRAMS FOR PRIVATELY OWNED FORESTS

    EPA Science Inventory

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

  13. BIODIVERSITY CONSERVATION INCENTIVE PROGRAMS FOR PRIVATELY OWNED FORESTS

    EPA Science Inventory

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

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

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Uddin, Jashim Md.

    2015-01-01

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

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

    Treesearch

    James S. Kagan

    2006-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2014-06-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2014-01-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2014-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-07-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2014-01-01

    Agroecosystems have traditionally been considered incompatible with biological conservation goals, and often been excluded from spatial conservation prioritization strategies. The consequences for the representativeness of identified priority areas have been little explored. Here, we evaluate these for biodiversity and carbon storage representation when agricultural land areas are excluded from a spatial prioritization strategy for South America. Comparing different prioritization approaches, we also assess how the spatial overlap of priority areas changes. The exclusion of agricultural lands was detrimental to biodiversity representation, indicating that priority areas for agricultural production overlap with areas of relatively high occurrence of species. By contrast, exclusion of agricultural lands benefits representation of carbon storage within priority areas, as lands of high value for agriculture and carbon storage overlap little. When agricultural lands were included and equally weighted with biodiversity and carbon storage, a balanced representation resulted. Our findings suggest that with appropriate management, South American agroecosystems can significantly contribute to biodiversity conservation. PMID:25143040

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

    PubMed

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

    2014-10-07

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2013-11-01

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

  3. Evolutionary biology in biodiversity science, conservation, and policy: a call to action.

    PubMed

    Hendry, Andrew P; Lohmann, Lúcia G; Conti, Elena; Cracraft, Joel; Crandall, Keith A; Faith, Daniel P; Häuser, Christoph; Joly, Carlos A; Kogure, Kazuhiro; Larigauderie, Anne; Magallón, Susana; Moritz, Craig; Tillier, Simon; Zardoya, Rafael; Prieur-Richard, Anne-Hélène; Walther, Bruno A; Yahara, Tetsukazu; Donoghue, Michael J

    2010-05-01

    Evolutionary biologists have long endeavored to document how many species exist on Earth, to understand the processes by which biodiversity waxes and wanes, to document and interpret spatial patterns of biodiversity, and to infer evolutionary relationships. Despite the great potential of this knowledge to improve biodiversity science, conservation, and policy, evolutionary biologists have generally devoted limited attention to these broader implications. Likewise, many workers in biodiversity science have underappreciated the fundamental relevance of evolutionary biology. The aim of this article is to summarize and illustrate some ways in which evolutionary biology is directly relevant. We do so in the context of four broad areas: (1) discovering and documenting biodiversity, (2) understanding the causes of diversification, (3) evaluating evolutionary responses to human disturbances, and (4) implications for ecological communities, ecosystems, and humans. We also introduce bioGENESIS, a new project within DIVERSITAS launched to explore the potential practical contributions of evolutionary biology. In addition to fostering the integration of evolutionary thinking into biodiversity science, bioGENESIS provides practical recommendations to policy makers for incorporating evolutionary perspectives into biodiversity agendas and conservation. We solicit your involvement in developing innovative ways of using evolutionary biology to better comprehend and stem the loss of biodiversity.

  4. An index of risk as a measure of biodiversity conservation achieved through land reform.

    PubMed

    Walker, Susan; Price, Robbie; Stephens, R T Theo

    2008-02-01

    We measured the net progress of land reform in achieving a national policy goal for biodiversity conservation in the context of ongoing clearing of native vegetation and additions of land to a highly nonrepresentative (residual) reserve network, interior South Island, New Zealand. We used systematic conservation-planning approaches to develop a spatially explicit index of risk of biodiversity loss (RBL). The index incorporated information from national data sets that describe New Zealand's remaining indigenous land cover, legal protection, and land environments and modeled risk to biodiversity on the basis of stated assumptions about the effects of past habitat loss and legal protection. The index identified irreplaceable and vulnerable native habitats in lowland environments as the most at risk of biodiversity loss, and risk was correlated with the density of threatened plant records. To measure achievement, we used changes in the index that reflected gains made and opportunity costs incurred by legal protection and privatization. Application of the index to measure the difference made by land reform showed it had caused a net increase in the risk of biodiversity loss because most land vulnerable to habitat modification and rich in threatened plant species was privatized and land at least risk of biodiversity loss was protected. The application revealed that new high-elevation reserves did little to mitigate biodiversity decline, that privatization of low-elevation land further jeopardized the most vulnerable biodiversity in lowland native habitats, and that outcomes of land reform for biodiversity deteriorated over time. Further development of robust achievement measures is needed to encourage more accountable biodiversity conservation decisions.

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2017-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2007-02-28

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

  7. Valuing biodiversity and ecosystem services: a useful way to manage and conserve marine resources?

    PubMed Central

    Broszeit, Stefanie; Pilling, Graham M.; Grant, Susie M.; Austen, Melanie C.

    2016-01-01

    Valuation of biodiversity and ecosystem services (ES) is widely recognized as a useful, though often controversial, approach to conservation and management. However, its use in the marine environment, hence evidence of its efficacy, lags behind that in terrestrial ecosystems. This largely reflects key challenges to marine conservation and management such as the practical difficulties in studying the ocean, complex governance issues and the historically-rooted separation of biodiversity conservation and resource management. Given these challenges together with the accelerating loss of marine biodiversity (and threats to the ES that this biodiversity supports), we ask whether valuation efforts for marine ecosystems are appropriate and effective. We compare three contrasting systems: the tropical Pacific, Southern Ocean and UK coastal seas. In doing so, we reveal a diversity in valuation approaches with different rates of progress and success. We also find a tendency to focus on specific ES (often the harvested species) rather than biodiversity. In light of our findings, we present a new conceptual view of valuation that should ideally be considered in decision-making. Accounting for the critical relationships between biodiversity and ES, together with an understanding of ecosystem structure and functioning, will enable the wider implications of marine conservation and management decisions to be evaluated. We recommend embedding valuation within existing management structures, rather than treating it as an alternative or additional mechanism. However, we caution that its uptake and efficacy will be compromised without the ability to develop and share best practice across regions. PMID:27928037

  8. Valuing biodiversity and ecosystem services: a useful way to manage and conserve marine resources?

    PubMed

    Cavanagh, Rachel D; Broszeit, Stefanie; Pilling, Graham M; Grant, Susie M; Murphy, Eugene J; Austen, Melanie C

    2016-12-14

    Valuation of biodiversity and ecosystem services (ES) is widely recognized as a useful, though often controversial, approach to conservation and management. However, its use in the marine environment, hence evidence of its efficacy, lags behind that in terrestrial ecosystems. This largely reflects key challenges to marine conservation and management such as the practical difficulties in studying the ocean, complex governance issues and the historically-rooted separation of biodiversity conservation and resource management. Given these challenges together with the accelerating loss of marine biodiversity (and threats to the ES that this biodiversity supports), we ask whether valuation efforts for marine ecosystems are appropriate and effective. We compare three contrasting systems: the tropical Pacific, Southern Ocean and UK coastal seas. In doing so, we reveal a diversity in valuation approaches with different rates of progress and success. We also find a tendency to focus on specific ES (often the harvested species) rather than biodiversity. In light of our findings, we present a new conceptual view of valuation that should ideally be considered in decision-making. Accounting for the critical relationships between biodiversity and ES, together with an understanding of ecosystem structure and functioning, will enable the wider implications of marine conservation and management decisions to be evaluated. We recommend embedding valuation within existing management structures, rather than treating it as an alternative or additional mechanism. However, we caution that its uptake and efficacy will be compromised without the ability to develop and share best practice across regions.

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

    PubMed

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

    2012-03-01

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

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

    Treesearch

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

    2009-01-01

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

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

    Treesearch

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

    2008-01-01

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

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

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Pindilli, Emily; Casey, Frank

    2015-10-26

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

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

    PubMed

    Costello, Mark J; Ballantine, Bill

    2015-09-01

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

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

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kohl, Jon; Brown, Cynthia; Humke, Matt

    2001-01-01

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

  15. SPECIES RICHNESS AND BIODIVERSITY CONSERVATION PRIORITIES IN BRITISH COLUMBIA

    EPA Science Inventory

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

  16. SPECIES RICHNESS AND BIODIVERSITY CONSERVATION PRIORITIES IN BRITISH COLUMBIA

    EPA Science Inventory

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

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

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kohl, Jon; Brown, Cynthia; Humke, Matt

    2001-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

    Moon, Katie; Marshall, Nadine; Cocklin, Chris

    2012-12-30

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2012-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

    Sandbrook, Chris

    2015-11-01

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

  1. Harmonizing recreational fisheries and conservation objectives for aquatic biodiversity in inland waters.

    PubMed

    Cowx, I G; Arlinghaus, R; Cooke, S J

    2010-06-01

    The importance of recreational fisheries to local and national economies, and as a generator of immense social welfare throughout the developed world, is well established. Development in the sector and its interaction with non-fishery-related nature conservation objectives for aquatic biodiversity, however, have the potential to generate conflict. This article reviews the intersection between recreational fisheries and nature conservation goals for aquatic biodiversity with specific reference to inland waters in industrialized countries, and the principal management activities and constraints that can lead to conflicts. A SWOT (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats) analysis was used to review the issues facing sectoral development and identify options for future advancement of recreational fisheries to ameliorate potential conflicts with nature conservation goals. It is concluded that reconciliation of recreational fisheries and modern conservation perspectives is both possible and desirable, because many conservation problems also benefit fisheries quality. Angler buy-in to conservation is probable if (1) management scales are small, (2) threats to conservation originate from outside the fisheries sectors and (3) ecological awareness for the conservation problem is high. If these aspects are not present, reconciliation of recreational fisheries and nature conservation goals is less likely, risking both the aquatic biodiversity and the future of angling. To address these issues, enforcement of legislation and continued communication with angler communities is necessary, as well as development of integrated management policies that build on the instrumental values of aquatic biodiversity for recreational fisheries, while curtailing the more insidious threats to such biodiversity that originate directly from the recreational fisheries sector.

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-05-25

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

    Children are becoming less likely to have direct contact with nature. This ongoing loss of human interactions with nature, the extinction of experience, is viewed as one of the most fundamental obstacles to addressing global environmental challenges. However, the consequences for biodiversity conservation have been examined very little. Here, we conducted a questionnaire survey of elementary schoolchildren and investigated effects of the frequency of direct (participating in nature-based activities) and vicarious experiences of nature (reading books or watching TV programs about nature and talking about nature with parents or friends) on their affective attitudes (individuals’ emotional feelings) toward and willingness to conserve biodiversity. A total of 397 children participated in the surveys in Tokyo. Children’s affective attitudes and willingness to conserve biodiversity were positively associated with the frequency of both direct and vicarious experiences of nature. Path analysis showed that effects of direct and vicarious experiences on children’s willingness to conserve biodiversity were mediated by their affective attitudes. This study demonstrates that children who frequently experience nature are likely to develop greater emotional affinity to and support for protecting biodiversity. We suggest that children should be encouraged to experience nature and be provided with various types of these experiences. PMID:27231925

  4. The effect of carbon credits on savanna land management and priorities for biodiversity conservation.

    PubMed

    Douglass, Lucinda L; Possingham, Hugh P; Carwardine, Josie; Klein, Carissa J; Roxburgh, Stephen H; Russell-Smith, Jeremy; Wilson, Kerrie A

    2011-01-01

    Carbon finance offers the potential to change land management and conservation planning priorities. We develop a novel approach to planning for improved land management to conserve biodiversity while utilizing potential revenue from carbon biosequestration. We apply our approach in northern Australia's tropical savanna, a region of global significance for biodiversity and carbon storage, both of which are threatened by current fire and grazing regimes. Our approach aims to identify priority locations for protecting species and vegetation communities by retaining existing vegetation and managing fire and grazing regimes at a minimum cost. We explore the impact of accounting for potential carbon revenue (using a carbon price of US$14 per tonne of carbon dioxide equivalent) on priority areas for conservation and the impact of explicitly protecting carbon stocks in addition to biodiversity. Our results show that improved management can potentially raise approximately US$5 per hectare per year in carbon revenue and prevent the release of 1-2 billion tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent over approximately 90 years. This revenue could be used to reduce the costs of improved land management by three quarters or double the number of biodiversity targets achieved and meet carbon storage targets for the same cost. These results are based on generalised cost and carbon data; more comprehensive applications will rely on fine scale, site-specific data and a supportive policy environment. Our research illustrates that the duel objective of conserving biodiversity and reducing the release of greenhouse gases offers important opportunities for cost-effective land management investments.

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

    PubMed

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

    2014-02-01

    Deserts and arid regions are generally perceived as bare and rather homogeneous areas of low diversity. The Sahara is the largest warm desert in the world and together with the arid Sahel displays high topographical and climatic heterogeneity, and has experienced recent and strong climatic oscillations that have greatly shifted biodiversity distribution and community composition. The large size, remoteness and long-term political instability of the Sahara-Sahel, have limited knowledge on its biodiversity. However, over the last decade, there have been an increasing number of published scientific studies based on modern geomatic and molecular tools, and broad sampling of taxa of these regions. This review tracks trends in knowledge about biodiversity patterns, processes and threats across the Sahara-Sahel, and anticipates needs for biodiversity research and conservation. Recent studies are changing completely the perception of regional biodiversity patterns. Instead of relatively low species diversity with distribution covering most of the region, studies now suggest a high rate of endemism and larger number of species, with much narrower and fragmented ranges, frequently limited to micro-hotspots of biodiversity. Molecular-based studies are also unravelling cryptic diversity associated with mountains, which together with recent distribution atlases, allows identifying integrative biogeographic patterns in biodiversity distribution. Mapping of multivariate environmental variation (at 1 km × 1 km resolution) of the region illustrates main biogeographical features of the Sahara-Sahel and supports recently hypothesised dispersal corridors and refugia. Micro-scale water-features present mostly in mountains have been associated with local biodiversity hotspots. However, the distribution of available data on vertebrates highlights current knowledge gaps that still apply to a large proportion of the Sahara-Sahel. Current research is providing insights into key

  6. Combining Landscape-Level Conservation Planning and Biodiversity Offset Programs: A Case Study

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Underwood, Jared G.

    2011-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

    Underwood, Jared G

    2011-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

    Schmidt, Paige M; Peterson, Markus J

    2009-12-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2014-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-01-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

    The use of endemism and vascular plants only for biodiversity hotspot delineation has long been contested. Few studies have focused on the efficacy of global biodiversity hotspots for the conservation of insects, an important, abundant, and often ignored component of biodiversity. We aimed to test five alternative diversity measures for hotspot delineation and examine the efficacy of biodiversity hotspots for conserving a non-typical target organism, South African katydids. Using a 1° fishnet grid, we delineated katydid hotspots in two ways: (1) count-based: grid cells in the top 10% of total, endemic, threatened and/or sensitive species richness; vs. (2) score-based: grid cells with a mean value in the top 10% on a scoring system which scored each species on the basis of its IUCN Red List threat status, distribution, mobility and trophic level. We then compared katydid hotspots with each other and with recognized biodiversity hotspots. Grid cells within biodiversity hotspots had significantly higher count-based and score-based diversity than non-hotspot grid cells. There was a significant association between the three types of hotspots. Of the count-based measures, endemic species richness was the best surrogate for the others. However, the score-based measure out-performed all count-based diversity measures. Species richness was the least successful surrogate of all. The strong performance of the score-based method for hotspot prediction emphasizes the importance of including species’ natural history information for conservation decision-making, and is easily adaptable to other organisms. Furthermore, these results add empirical support for the efficacy of biodiversity hotspots in conserving non-target organisms. PMID:27631131

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

    PubMed

    Heywood, Vernon H

    2011-09-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2017-01-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

    VanDerWal, Jeremy; Moilanen, Atte; Graham, Erin M.

    2017-01-01

    With the high rate of ecosystem change already occurring and predicted to occur in the coming decades, long-term conservation has to account not only for current biodiversity but also for the biodiversity patterns anticipated for the future. The trade-offs between prioritising future biodiversity at the expense of current priorities must be understood to guide current conservation planning, but have been largely unexplored. To fill this gap, we compared the performance of four conservation planning solutions involving 662 vertebrate species in the Wet Tropics Natural Resource Management Cluster Region in north-eastern Australia. Input species data for the four planning solutions were: 1) current distributions; 2) projected distributions for 2055; 3) projected distributions for 2085; and 4) current, 2055 and 2085 projected distributions, and the connectivity between each of the three time periods for each species. The four planning solutions were remarkably similar (up to 85% overlap), suggesting that modelling for either current or future scenarios is sufficient for conversation planning for this region, with little obvious trade-off. Our analyses also revealed that overall, species with small ranges occurring across steep elevation gradients and at higher elevations were more likely to be better represented in all solutions. Given that species with these characteristics are of high conservation significance, our results provide confidence that conservation planning focused on either current, near- or distant-future biodiversity will account for these species. PMID:28222199

  15. Resident motivations and willingness-to-pay for urban biodiversity conservation in Guangzhou (China).

    PubMed

    Chen, Wendy Y; Jim, C Y

    2010-05-01

    The monetary assessment of biodiversity measures the welfare damages brought by biodiversity losses and the cost-benefit analysis of conservation projects in a socio-economic context. The contingent valuation method could include motivational factors to strengthen economic analysis of nature conservation. This study analyzed Guangzhou residents' motivations and willingness-to-pay (WTP) for an urban biodiversity conservation program in the National Baiyun Mountain Scenic Area (BMSA). The peri-urban natural site, offering refuge to some endemic species, is under increasing development pressures for recreational and residential use. A questionnaire survey was conducted in the Guangzhou metropolitan area during June to October 2007. We interviewed face-to-face 720 stratified sampled households to probe residents' attitudes towards the city's environmental issues, motivations for urban nature conservation, and WTP for biodiversity conservation. Principal component analysis identified five motivational factors, including environmental benefit, ecological diversity, nature-culture interaction, landscape-recreation function, and intergenerational sustainability, which illustrated the general economic values of urban nature. Logistic regression was applied to predict the probability of people being willing to pay for the urban biodiversity conservation in BMSA. The significant predictors of WTP included household income and the factor nature-culture interaction. The median WTP estimated RMB149/household (about US$19.5/household) per year and an aggregate of RMB291 million (approximately US$38.2 million) annually to support the urban conservation project. Including public motivations into contingent valuation presents a promising approach to conduct cost-benefit analysis of public projects in China.

  16. Resident Motivations and Willingness-to-Pay for Urban Biodiversity Conservation in Guangzhou (China)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Wendy Y.; Jim, C. Y.

    2010-05-01

    The monetary assessment of biodiversity measures the welfare damages brought by biodiversity losses and the cost-benefit analysis of conservation projects in a socio-economic context. The contingent valuation method could include motivational factors to strengthen economic analysis of nature conservation. This study analyzed Guangzhou residents’ motivations and willingness-to-pay (WTP) for an urban biodiversity conservation program in the National Baiyun Mountain Scenic Area (BMSA). The peri-urban natural site, offering refuge to some endemic species, is under increasing development pressures for recreational and residential use. A questionnaire survey was conducted in the Guangzhou metropolitan area during June to October 2007. We interviewed face-to-face 720 stratified sampled households to probe residents’ attitudes towards the city’s environmental issues, motivations for urban nature conservation, and WTP for biodiversity conservation. Principal component analysis identified five motivational factors, including environmental benefit, ecological diversity, nature-culture interaction, landscape-recreation function, and intergenerational sustainability, which illustrated the general economic values of urban nature. Logistic regression was applied to predict the probability of people being willing to pay for the urban biodiversity conservation in BMSA. The significant predictors of WTP included household income and the factor nature-culture interaction. The median WTP estimated RMB149/household (about US19.5/household) per year and an aggregate of RMB291 million (approximately US38.2 million) annually to support the urban conservation project. Including public motivations into contingent valuation presents a promising approach to conduct cost-benefit analysis of public projects in China.

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

    PubMed

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

    2011-06-01

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

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

    PubMed

    Gelcich, Stefan; Donlan, C Josh

    2015-08-01

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

  19. Making evolutionary history count: biodiversity planning for coral reef fishes and the conservation of evolutionary processes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    von der Heyden, Sophie

    2017-03-01

    Anthropogenic activities are having devastating impacts on marine systems with numerous knock-on effects on trophic functioning, species interactions and an accelerated loss of biodiversity. Establishing conservation areas can not only protect biodiversity, but also confer resilience against changes to coral reefs and their inhabitants. Planning for protection and conservation in marine systems is complex, but usually focuses on maintaining levels of biodiversity and protecting special and unique landscape features while avoiding negative impacts to socio-economic benefits. Conversely, the integration of evolutionary processes that have shaped extant species assemblages is rarely taken into account. However, it is as important to protect processes as it is to protect patterns for maintaining the evolutionary trajectories of populations and species. This review focuses on different approaches for integrating genetic analyses, such as phylogenetic diversity, phylogeography and the delineation of management units, temporal and spatial monitoring of genetic diversity and quantification of adaptive variation for protecting evolutionary resilience, into marine spatial planning, specifically for coral reef fishes. Many of these concepts are not yet readily applied to coral reef fish studies, but this synthesis highlights their potential and the importance of including historical processes into systematic biodiversity planning for conserving not only extant, but also future, biodiversity and its evolutionary potential.

  20. Conserving Biodiversity on Military Lands: The Commander’s Guide

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2010-01-01

    Top: Orchid, Warren Grove Air National Guard Range, New Jersey, (© Douglas Ripley). Above left: Carnivorous pitcher plants , Fort Bragg, North...mou for Conservation of Migratory Birds (07-2006) ı mou for Federal Native Plant Conservation (09-2006) ı mou between the Department of Defense and Bat...natural resources conserva- tion by protecting large tracts of land that provide habitat for many species of plants and wildlife. The hcmp also

  1. Biodiversity and Archeological Conservation Connected: Aragonite Shell Middens Increase Plant Diversity

    PubMed Central

    Vanderplank, Sula E.; Mata, Sergio; Ezcurra, Exequiel

    2014-01-01

    Natural and cultural heritage sites frequently have nonoverlapping or even conflicting conservation priorities, because human impacts have often resulted in local extirpations and reduced levels of native biodiversity. Over thousands of years, the predictable winter rains of northwestern Baja California have weathered calcium from the clam shells deposited by indigenous peoples in middens along the coast. The release of this calcium has changed soil properties, remediated sodic and saline soils, and resulted in a unique microhabitat that harbors plant assemblages very different from those of the surrounding matrix. Native plant biodiversity and landscape heterogeneity are significantly increased on the anthropogenic soils of these shell middens. Protection of this cultural landscape in the Anthropocene will further both archeological and biodiversity conservation in these anthropogenic footprints from the Holocene. Along these coasts, natural and cultural heritage priorities are overlapping and mutually beneficial. PMID:26955068

  2. Science and Sentiment: Grinnell's Fact-Based Philosophy of Biodiversity Conservation.

    PubMed

    Shavit, Ayelet; Griesemer, James R

    2017-09-04

    At the beginning of the twentieth century, the biologist Joseph Grinnell made a distinction between science and sentiment for producing fact-based generalizations on how to conserve biodiversity. We are inspired by Grinnellian science, which successfully produced a century-long impact on studying and conserving biodiversity that runs orthogonal to some familiar philosophical distinctions such as fact versus value, emotion versus reason and basic versus applied science. According to Grinnell, unlike sentiment-based generalizations, a fact-based generalization traces its diverse commitments and thus becomes tractable for its audience. We argue that foregrounding tractability better explains Grinnell's practice in the context of his time as well as in the context of current discourse among scientists over the political "biases" of biodiversity research and its problem of "reproducibility."

  3. Biodiversity and Archeological Conservation Connected: Aragonite Shell Middens Increase Plant Diversity.

    PubMed

    Vanderplank, Sula E; Mata, Sergio; Ezcurra, Exequiel

    2014-03-01

    Natural and cultural heritage sites frequently have nonoverlapping or even conflicting conservation priorities, because human impacts have often resulted in local extirpations and reduced levels of native biodiversity. Over thousands of years, the predictable winter rains of northwestern Baja California have weathered calcium from the clam shells deposited by indigenous peoples in middens along the coast. The release of this calcium has changed soil properties, remediated sodic and saline soils, and resulted in a unique microhabitat that harbors plant assemblages very different from those of the surrounding matrix. Native plant biodiversity and landscape heterogeneity are significantly increased on the anthropogenic soils of these shell middens. Protection of this cultural landscape in the Anthropocene will further both archeological and biodiversity conservation in these anthropogenic footprints from the Holocene. Along these coasts, natural and cultural heritage priorities are overlapping and mutually beneficial.

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

    PubMed

    Hoban, Sean; Vernesi, Cristiano

    2012-12-23

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

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

    PubMed Central

    Hoban, Sean; Vernesi, Cristiano

    2012-01-01

    The study and practice of conservation biology is inherently interdisciplinary, addresses short and long time-scales and occurs within complex human–natural interfaces. Zoos and aquaria, in partnership with researchers, other non-government organizations, government, industry and educators, are combining knowledge of species and ecosystems with economics, psychology and law to create solutions for conserving biodiversity. From 22 to 25 May, the Conservation Forum of the European Association of Zoos and Aquaria was a venue for discussing conservation research, education and interventions, from the scale of villages to global policy. PMID:22832128

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-02-02

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2014-08-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2014-03-01

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

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

    Treesearch

    Deanna H. Olson

    2006-01-01

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

  10. Mapping spatial pattern in biodiversity for regional conservation planning: where to from here?

    PubMed

    Ferrier, Simon

    2002-04-01

    Vast gaps in available information on the spatial distribution of biodiversity pose a major challenge for regional conservation planning in many parts of the world. This problem is often addressed by basing such planning on various biodiversity surrogates. In some situations, distributional data for selected taxa may be used as surrogates for biodiversity as a whole. However, this approach is less effective in data-poor regions, where there may be little choice but to base conservation planning on some form of remote environmental mapping, derived, for example, from interpretation of satellite imagery or from numerical classification of abiotic environmental layers. Although this alternative approach confers obvious benefits in terms of cost-effectiveness and rapidity of application, problems may arise if congruence is poor between mapped land-classes and actual biological distributions. I propose three strategies for making more effective use of available biological data and knowledge to alleviate such problems by (1) more closely integrating biological and environmental data through predictive modeling, with increased emphasis on modeling collective properties of biodiversity rather than individual entities; (2) making more rigorous use of remotely mapped surrogates in conservation planning by incorporating knowledge of heterogeneity within land-classes, and of varying levels of distinctiveness between classes, into measures of conservation priority and achievement; and (3) using relatively data-rich regions as test-beds for evaluating the performance of surrogates that can be readily applied across data-poor regions.

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

    PubMed

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

    2011-12-01

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

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

    PubMed

    Lee, Joung Hun; Iwasa, Yoh

    2012-11-01

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

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2010-12-01

    Immediate conservation measures for world-wide freshwater resources are of eminent importance. This is particularly true for so-called ancient lakes. While these lakes are famous for being evolutionary theatres, often displaying an extraordinarily high degree of biodiversity and endemism, in many cases these biota are also experiencing extreme anthropogenic impact. Lake Ohrid, a major European biodiversity hotspot situated in a trans-frontier setting on the Balkans, is a prime example for a lake with a magnitude of narrow range endemic taxa that are under increasing anthropogenic pressure. Unfortunately, evidence for a "creeping biodiversity crisis" has accumulated over the last decades, and major socio-political changes have gone along with human-mediated environmental changes. Based on field surveys, monitoring data, published records, and expert interviews, we aimed to (1) assess threats to Lake Ohrids' (endemic) biodiversity, (2) summarize existing conservation activities and strategies, and (3) outline future conservation needs for Lake Ohrid. We compiled threats to both specific taxa (and in cases to particular species) as well as to the lake ecosystems itself. Major conservation concerns identified for Lake Ohrid are: (1) watershed impacts, (2) agriculture and forestry, (3) tourism and population growth, (4) non-indigenous species, (5) habitat alteration or loss, (6) unsustainable exploitation of fisheries, and (7) global climate change. Among the major (well-known) threats with high impact are nutrient input (particularly of phosphorus), habitat conversion and silt load. Other threats are potentially of high impact but less well known. Such threats include pollution with hazardous substances (from sources such as mines, former industries, agriculture) or climate change. We review and discuss institutional responsibilities, environmental monitoring and ecosystem management, existing parks and reserves, biodiversity and species measures, international

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2010-07-01

    Freshwater habitats and species living in freshwater are generally more prone to extinction than terrestrial or marine ones. Immediate conservation measures for world-wide freshwater resources are thus of eminent importance. This is particularly true for so called ancient lakes. While these lakes are famous for being evolutionary theatres, often displaying an extraordinarily high degree of biodiversity and endemism, in many cases these biota are also experiencing extreme anthropogenic impact. Lake Ohrid, the European biodiversity hotspot, is a prime example for a lake with a magnitude of narrow range endemic taxa that are under increasing anthropogenic pressure. Unfortunately, evidence for a "creeping biodiversity crisis" has accumulated over the last decades, and major socio-political changes have gone along with human-mediated environmental changes. Based on field surveys, monitoring data, published records, and expert interviews, we aimed to (1) assess threats to Lake Ohrids' (endemic) biodiversity, (2) summarize existing conservation activities and strategies, and (3) outline future conservation needs for Lake Ohrid. We compiled threats to both specific taxa (and in cases to particular species) as well as to the lake ecosystems itself. Major conservation concerns identified for Lake Ohrid are: (1) watershed impacts, (2) agriculture and forestry, (3) tourism and population growth, (4) non-indigenous species, (5) habitat alteration or loss, (6) unsustainable exploitation of fisheries, and (7) global climate change. Of the 11 IUCN (International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources) threat classes scored, seven have moderate and three severe impacts. These latter threat classes are energy production and mining, biological resource use, and pollution. We review and discuss institutional responsibilities, environmental monitoring and ecosystem management, existing parks and reserves, biodiversity and species measures, international conservation

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

    Treesearch

    Becky K. Kerns; Alan Ager

    2007-01-01

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

  16. Quantitative evaluation of hybridization and the impact on biodiversity conservation.

    PubMed

    van Wyk, Anna M; Dalton, Desiré L; Hoban, Sean; Bruford, Michael W; Russo, Isa-Rita M; Birss, Coral; Grobler, Paul; van Vuuren, Bettine Janse; Kotzé, Antoinette

    2017-01-01

    Anthropogenic hybridization is an increasing conservation threat worldwide. In South Africa, recent hybridization is threatening numerous ungulate taxa. For example, the genetic integrity of the near-threatened bontebok (Damaliscus pygargus pygargus) is threatened by hybridization with the more common blesbok (D. p. phillipsi). Identifying nonadmixed parental and admixed individuals is challenging based on the morphological traits alone; however, molecular analyses may allow for accurate detection. Once hybrids are identified, population simulation software may assist in determining the optimal conservation management strategy, although quantitative evaluation of hybrid management is rarely performed. In this study, our objectives were to describe species-wide and localized rates of hybridization in nearly 3,000 individuals based on 12 microsatellite loci, quantify the accuracy of hybrid assignment software (STRUCTURE and NEWHYBRIDS), and determine an optimal threshold of bontebok ancestry for management purposes. According to multiple methods, we identified 2,051 bontebok, 657 hybrids, and 29 blesbok. More than two-thirds of locations contained at least some hybrid individuals, with populations varying in the degree of introgression. HYBRIDLAB was used to simulate four generations of coexistence between bontebok and blesbok, and to optimize a threshold of ancestry, where most hybrids will be detected and removed, and the fewest nonadmixed bontebok individuals misclassified as hybrids. Overall, a threshold Q-value (admixture coefficient) of 0.90 would remove 94% of hybrid animals, while a threshold of 0.95 would remove 98% of hybrid animals but also 8% of nonadmixed bontebok. To this end, a threshold of 0.90 was identified as optimal and has since been implemented in formal policy by a provincial nature conservation agency. Due to widespread hybridization, effective conservation plans should be established and enforced to conserve native populations that are

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

    PubMed

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

    2014-12-01

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

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

    PubMed

    Shokri, Mohammad Reza; Gladstone, William

    2013-04-01

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

  19. How to Maximally Support Local and Regional Biodiversity in Applied Conservation? Insights from Pond Management

    PubMed Central

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

    2013-01-01

    Biodiversity and nature values in anthropogenic landscapes often depend on land use practices and management. Evaluations of the association between management and biodiversity remain, however, comparatively scarce, especially in aquatic systems. Furthermore, studies also tend to focus on a limited set of organism groups at the local scale, whereas a multi-group approach at the landscape scale is to be preferred. This study aims to investigate the effect of pond management on the diversity of multiple aquatic organism groups (e.g. phytoplankton, zooplankton, several groups of macro-invertebrates, submerged and emergent macrophytes) at local and regional spatial scales. For this purpose, we performed a field study of 39 shallow man-made ponds representing five different management types. Our results indicate that fish stock management and periodic pond drainage are crucial drivers of pond biodiversity. Furthermore, this study provides insight in how the management of eutrophied ponds can contribute to aquatic biodiversity. A combination of regular draining of ponds with efforts to keep ponds free of fish seems to be highly beneficial for the biodiversity of many groups of aquatic organisms at local and regional scales. Regular draining combined with a stocking of fish at low biomass is also preferable to infrequent draining and lack of fish stock control. These insights are essential for the development of conservation programs that aim long-term maintenance of regional biodiversity in pond areas across Europe. PMID:23951328

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

    PubMed

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

    2013-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-02-01

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

  2. Characterising and Predicting Benthic Biodiversity for Conservation Planning in Deepwater Environments

    PubMed Central

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

    2012-01-01

    Understanding patterns of biodiversity in deep sea systems is increasingly important because human activities are extending further into these areas. However, obtaining data is difficult, limiting the ability of science to inform management decisions. We have used three different methods of quantifying biodiversity to describe patterns of biodiversity in an area that includes two marine reserves in deep water off southern Australia. We used biological data collected during a recent survey, combined with extensive physical data to model, predict and map three different attributes of biodiversity: distributions of common species, beta diversity and rank abundance distributions (RAD). The distribution of each of eight common species was unique, although all the species respond to a depth-correlated physical gradient. Changes in composition (beta diversity) were large, even between sites with very similar environmental conditions. Composition at any one site was highly uncertain, and the suite of species changed dramatically both across and down slope. In contrast, the distributions of the RAD components of biodiversity (community abundance, richness, and evenness) were relatively smooth across the study area, suggesting that assemblage structure (i.e. the distribution of abundances of species) is limited, irrespective of species composition. Seamounts had similar biodiversity based on metrics of species presence, beta diversity, total abundance, richness and evenness to the adjacent continental slope in the same depth ranges. These analyses suggest that conservation objectives need to clearly identify which aspects of biodiversity are valued, and employ an appropriate suite of methods to address these aspects, to ensure that conservation goals are met. PMID:22606271

  3. Building evolutionary resilience for conserving biodiversity under climate change

    PubMed Central

    Sgrò, Carla M; Lowe, Andrew J; Hoffmann, Ary A

    2011-01-01

    Evolution occurs rapidly and is an ongoing process in our environments. Evolutionary principles need to be built into conservation efforts, particularly given the stressful conditions organisms are increasingly likely to experience because of climate change and ongoing habitat fragmentation. The concept of evolutionary resilience is a way of emphasizing evolutionary processes in conservation and landscape planning. From an evolutionary perspective, landscapes need to allow in situ selection and capture high levels of genetic variation essential for responding to the direct and indirect effects of climate change. We summarize ideas that need to be considered in planning for evolutionary resilience and suggest how they might be incorporated into policy and management to ensure that resilience is maintained in the face of environmental degradation. PMID:25567976

  4. Building evolutionary resilience for conserving biodiversity under climate change.

    PubMed

    Sgrò, Carla M; Lowe, Andrew J; Hoffmann, Ary A

    2011-03-01

    Evolution occurs rapidly and is an ongoing process in our environments. Evolutionary principles need to be built into conservation efforts, particularly given the stressful conditions organisms are increasingly likely to experience because of climate change and ongoing habitat fragmentation. The concept of evolutionary resilience is a way of emphasizing evolutionary processes in conservation and landscape planning. From an evolutionary perspective, landscapes need to allow in situ selection and capture high levels of genetic variation essential for responding to the direct and indirect effects of climate change. We summarize ideas that need to be considered in planning for evolutionary resilience and suggest how they might be incorporated into policy and management to ensure that resilience is maintained in the face of environmental degradation.

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-05-01

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

  6. Conservation Planning for Biodiversity and Wilderness: A Real-World Example

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2015-05-01

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

  7. Multi-scale marine biodiversity patterns inferred efficiently from habitat image processing.

    PubMed

    Mellin, Camille; Parrott, Lael; Andréfouët, Serge; Bradshaw, Corey J A; MacNeil, M Aaron; Caley, M Julian

    2012-04-01

    Cost-effective proxies of biodiversity and species abundance, applicable across a range of spatial scales, are needed for setting conservation priorities and planning action. We outline a rapid, efficient, and low-cost measure of spectral signal from digital habitat images that, being an effective proxy for habitat complexity, correlates with species diversity and requires little image processing or interpretation. We validated this method for coral reefs of the Great Barrier Reef (GBR), Australia, across a range of spatial scales (1 m to 10 km), using digital photographs of benthic communities at the transect scale and high-resolution Landsat satellite images at the reef scale. We calculated an index of image-derived spatial heterogeneity, the mean information gain (MIG), for each scale and related it to univariate (species richness and total abundance summed across species) and multivariate (species abundance matrix) measures of fish community structure, using two techniques that account for the hierarchical structure of the data: hierarchical (mixed-effect) linear models and distance-based partial redundancy analysis. Over the length and breadth of the GBR, MIG alone explained up to 29% of deviance in fish species richness, 33% in total fish abundance, and 25% in fish community structure at multiple scales, thus demonstrating the possibility of easily and rapidly exploiting spatial information contained in digital images to complement existing methods for inferring diversity and abundance patterns among fish communities. Thus, the spectral signal of unprocessed remotely sensed images provides an efficient and low-cost way to optimize the design of surveys used in conservation planning. In data-sparse situations, this simple approach also offers a viable method for rapid assessment of potential local biodiversity, particularly where there is little local capacity in terms of skills or resources for mounting in-depth biodiversity surveys.

  8. Economic benefits of biodiversity exceed costs of conservation at an African rainforest reserve

    PubMed Central

    Naidoo, Robin; Adamowicz, Wiktor L.

    2005-01-01

    Economic research on biodiversity conservation has focused on the costs of conservation reserves and the benefits of intact ecosystems; however, no study has simultaneously considered the costs and benefits of species diversity, a fundamental component of biodiversity. We quantified the costs and benefits of avian biodiversity at a rainforest reserve in Uganda through a combination of economic surveys of tourists, spatial land-use analyses, and species-area relationships. Our results show that revising entrance fees and redistributing ecotourism revenues would protect 114 of 143 forest bird species (80%) under current market conditions. This total would increase to 131 species (≈90%) if entrance fees were optimized to capture the tourist's willingness to pay for forest visits and the chance of seeing increased numbers of bird species. In contrast, the cost of purchasing agricultural land for ecological rehabilitation of the avian habitat would be economically prohibitive. These results suggest that local biodiversity markets could play a positive role in tropical conservation strategies if the appropriate institutions for redistribution can be developed. PMID:16267131

  9. Evaluation of ecosystem services for good balance between climate change prevention and biodiversity conservation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ito, A.; Adachi, M.; Yamagata, Y.; Suzuki, R.; Saigusa, N.; Sekine, H.

    2011-12-01

    For appropriate decision making in ecosystem management for global warming prevention and biodiversity conservation, a reliable and practical method to evaluate ecosystem services is necessary. For this purpose, we are conducting a project focusing on the evaluation of ecosystem services with a financial support from the Ministry of Environment, Japan, during the period from 2011 to 2013. The project is titled "Development of a method for evaluation of ecosystem services aiming at trade-off mitigation between climate change prevention and biodiversity conservation" (Environmental Research Fund, No. F-1101) and jointly conducted through collaboration among: the National Institute for Environmental Studies, the Japan-Agency for Marine-Earth Science and Technology, and Mitsubishi Research Institute. The objectives of the project include: (1) integration of observational data from field sites and satellites related to ecosystem functions, (2) development of a practical evaluation method of ecosystem services, and (3) contribution to mitigate conflicts between environmental mitigation options such as climate change prevention and biodiversity conservation. In this project, we have a couple of candidate sites in Asian region to conduct field studies including in situ observation of forest biomass, leaf area index, canopy structure, in conjunction with corresponding satellite observations. These data on functional traits will be related with important ecosystem services such as carbon sequestration and climate regulation, water supply, and genetic resource stemming from biodiversity.

  10. The Effect of Carbon Credits on Savanna Land Management and Priorities for Biodiversity Conservation

    PubMed Central

    Douglass, Lucinda L.; Possingham, Hugh P.; Carwardine, Josie; Klein, Carissa J.; Roxburgh, Stephen H.; Russell-Smith, Jeremy; Wilson, Kerrie A.

    2011-01-01

    Carbon finance offers the potential to change land management and conservation planning priorities. We develop a novel approach to planning for improved land management to conserve biodiversity while utilizing potential revenue from carbon biosequestration. We apply our approach in northern Australia's tropical savanna, a region of global significance for biodiversity and carbon storage, both of which are threatened by current fire and grazing regimes. Our approach aims to identify priority locations for protecting species and vegetation communities by retaining existing vegetation and managing fire and grazing regimes at a minimum cost. We explore the impact of accounting for potential carbon revenue (using a carbon price of US$14 per tonne of carbon dioxide equivalent) on priority areas for conservation and the impact of explicitly protecting carbon stocks in addition to biodiversity. Our results show that improved management can potentially raise approximately US$5 per hectare per year in carbon revenue and prevent the release of 1–2 billion tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent over approximately 90 years. This revenue could be used to reduce the costs of improved land management by three quarters or double the number of biodiversity targets achieved and meet carbon storage targets for the same cost. These results are based on generalised cost and carbon data; more comprehensive applications will rely on fine scale, site-specific data and a supportive policy environment. Our research illustrates that the duel objective of conserving biodiversity and reducing the release of greenhouse gases offers important opportunities for cost-effective land management investments. PMID:21935363

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

    PubMed

    Cox, Robin L; Underwood, Emma C

    2011-01-07

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

  12. The Importance of Conserving Biodiversity Outside of Protected Areas in Mediterranean Ecosystems

    PubMed Central

    Cox, Robin L.; Underwood, Emma C.

    2011-01-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

    Chiatante, Gianpasquale; Meriggi, Alberto

    2016-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

    Chiatante, Gianpasquale; Meriggi, Alberto

    2016-01-01

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

  15. Synergies and trade-offs between food security and biodiversity conservation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Molotoks, Amy

    2016-04-01

    Human land use activities have transformed a large proportion of the world's land surface and in particular, the expansion of agriculture has been a major driver in global land use change. The conversion of natural ecosystems to crop and pasture lands has contributed significantly to deforestation and associated biodiversity loss through habitat destruction. This loss has raised concerns about associated loss of ecological functions which directly support over one billion people worldwide. Furthermore, agriculture itself is heavily reliant on a number of ecosystem services which are essential for crop production. It is therefore essential that the global problems of food insecurity and biodiversity loss are not viewed independently as the methods used to address one will necessarily involve choices affecting the other. This poster will examine the relationship between food security provision and biodiversity hotspots by using global spatial datasets of land use and conservation value.

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

    PubMed Central

    Chappell, M Jahi

    2013-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

    Alho, C J R

    2011-04-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2010-09-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2013-01-01

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

  20. A systemic view of biodiversity and its conservation: processes, interrelationships, and human culture: presentation of a systemic view of biodiversity and its conservation that emphasizes complex interrelationships among subsystems and includes human culture.

    PubMed

    Sterling, Eleanor J; Gómez, Andrés; Porzecanski, Ana L

    2010-12-01

    Historically, views and measurements of biodiversity have had a narrow focus, for instance, characterizing the attributes of observable patterns but affording less attention to processes. Here, we explore the question: how does a systems thinking view - one where the world is seen as elements and processes that connect and interact in dynamic ways to form a whole - affect the way we understand biodiversity and practice conservation? We answer this question by illustrating the systemic properties of biodiversity at multiple levels, and show that biodiversity is a collection of dynamic systems linking seemingly disparate biological and cultural components and requiring an understanding of the system as a whole. We conclude that systems thinking calls traditional views of species, ecosystem function, and human relationships with the rest of biodiversity into question. Finally, we suggest some of the ways in which this view can impact the science and practice of conservation, particularly through affecting our conservation targets and strategies. Copyright © 2010 WILEY Periodicals, Inc.

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

    PubMed

    Kremen, Claire

    2015-10-01

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

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2016-02-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-02-01

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

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Skridlaite, Grazina; Motiejunaite, Jurga

    2014-05-01

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

  5. Taxonomic distinctness and conservation of a new high biodiversity subterranean area in Brazil.

    PubMed

    Gallão, Jonas E; Bichuette, Maria Elina

    2015-03-01

    Subterranean environments, even though they do not possess a primary production (photosynthesis), may present high biodiversity, faunistic originality, endemism, phylogenetic isolations and unique ecological and/or evolution events, in addition to rare taxa. Studies investigating the biological diversity in Neotropical caves are relatively rare and recent, and most of them have been conducted in Brazil. We sampled caves from the state of Bahia, northeastern Brazil, and through sampling sufficiency tests and richness estimators, we demonstrate that the normatization for the Brazilian cave laws is not adequate for its conservation and that only α diversity index is not enough to verify faunistic patterns. We suggest that a phylogenetic diversity index be more robust and accurate for conservation purposes, particularly the Taxonomic Distinctness index. Moreover, we propose that the sandstone complex caves from Chapada Diamantina National Park need to be classified as being of high subterranean biodiversity in a global scope.

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

    PubMed

    Hagerman, Shannon M; Satterfield, Terre

    2014-04-01

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

  7. Evaluating the success of conservation actions in safeguarding tropical forest biodiversity.

    PubMed

    Brooks, Thomas M; Wright, S Joseph; Sheil, Douglas

    2009-12-01

    We reviewed the evidence on the extent and efficacy of conservation of tropical forest biodiversity for each of the classes of conservation action defined by the new International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) classification. Protected areas are the most tested conservation approach, and a number of studies show they are generally effective in slowing deforestation. There is some documentation of the extent of sustainable timber management in tropical forest, but little information on other landscape-conservation tactics. The extent and effectiveness of ex situ species conservation is quite well known. Forty-one tropical-forest species now survive only in captivity. Other single-species conservation actions are not as well documented. The potential of policy mechanisms, such as international conventions and provision of funds, to slow extinctions in tropical forests is considerable, but the effects of policy are difficult to measure. Finally, interventions to promote tropical conservation by supporting education and livelihoods, providing incentives, and furthering capacity building are all thought to be important, but their extent and effectiveness remain poorly known. For birds, the best studied taxon, the sum of such conservation actions has averted one-fifth of the extinctions that would otherwise have occurred over the last century. Clearly, tropical forest conservation works, but more is needed, as is critical assessment of what works in what circumstances, if mass extinction is to be averted.

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

    PubMed

    Esteves, F A; Caliman, A; Santangelo, J M; Guariento, R D; Farjalla, V F; Bozelli, R L

    2008-11-01

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

  9. An inventory of riverine biodiversity in monsoonal Asia: present status and conservation challenges.

    PubMed

    Dudgeon, D

    2002-01-01

    There are few parts of the planet where human impacts on riverine biodiversity are more apparent than in monsoonal Asia. Flow regulation, drainage-basin degradation and conversion of riverine wetlands to agriculture have been occurring for centuries, while pollution and over-harvesting have become important in recent decades. Concomitant species loss appears both ongoing and rampant. Uncertainty over rates of loss is imposed by the fact that the extremely rich biodiversity of Asian rivers has not been inventoried adequately. It is nevertheless evident that some taxa are gravely threatened. Specialist riverine birds have declined, turtles are highly endangered, and over-harvesting has severely impacted fishes--an effect that is exacerbated by pollution and flow regulation. A particular conflict that constrains biodiversity conservation is the tendency for dam construction, which damages river ecosystems, to produce tangible benefits for humans through hydropower generation and relief from floods and droughts. Resolution of such conflicts requires changes in perception: for instance, realistic economic valuations of the ecosystem goods and services provided by rivers, and promotion of flagship species as conservation icons to increase citizen awareness. Translation of awareness and knowledge to action, however, remains the essential prerequisite for societal commitment to the conservation of freshwater ecosystems.

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

    PubMed

    Sheth, Bhavisha P; Thaker, Vrinda S

    2017-07-01

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

  11. Striking a balance between biodiversity conservation and socioeconomic viability in the design of marine protected areas.

    PubMed

    Klein, C J; Chan, A; Kircher, L; Cundiff, A J; Gardner, N; Hrovat, Y; Scholz, A; Kendall, B E; Airamé, S

    2008-06-01

    The establishment of marine protected areas is often viewed as a conflict between conservation and fishing. We considered consumptive and nonconsumptive interests of multiple stakeholders (i.e., fishers, scuba divers, conservationists, managers, scientists) in the systematic design of a network of marine protected areas along California's central coast in the context of the Marine Life Protection Act Initiative. With advice from managers, administrators, and scientists, a representative group of stakeholders defined biodiversity conservation and socioeconomic goals that accommodated social needs and conserved marine ecosystems, consistent with legal requirements. To satisfy biodiversity goals, we targeted 11 marine habitats across 5 depth zones, areas of high species diversity, and areas containing species of special status. We minimized adverse socioeconomic impacts by minimizing negative effects on fishers. We included fine-scale fishing data from the recreational and commercial fishing sectors across 24 fisheries. Protected areas designed with consideration of commercial and recreational fisheries reduced potential impact to the fisheries approximately 21% more than protected areas designed without consideration of fishing effort and resulted in a small increase in the total area protected (approximately 3.4%). We incorporated confidential fishing data without revealing the identity of specific fisheries or individual fishing grounds. We sited a portion of the protected areas near land parks, marine laboratories, and scientific monitoring sites to address nonconsumptive socioeconomic goals. Our results show that a stakeholder-driven design process can use systematic conservation-planning methods to successfully produce options for network design that satisfy multiple conservation and socioeconomic objectives. Marine protected areas that incorporate multiple stakeholder interests without compromising biodiversity conservation goals are more likely to protect

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Carvalho-Santos, Claudia; Nunes, João Pedro; Sousa-Silva, Rita; Gonçalves, João; Pradinho Honrado, João

    2015-04-01

    Humans rely on ecosystems for the provision of hydrological services, namely water supply and water damage mitigation, and promoting forests is a widely used management strategy for the provision of hydrological services. Therefore, it is important to model how forests will contribute for this provision, taking into account the environmental characteristics of each region, as well as the spatio-temporal patterns of societal demand. In addition, ensuring forest protection and the delivery of forest ecosystem services is one of the aims included in the European Union biodiversity strategy to 2020. On the other hand, forest management for hydrological services must consider possible trade-offs with other services provision, as well as with biodiversity conservation. Accurate modeling and mapping of both hydrological services and biodiversity conservation value is thus important to support spatial planning and land management options involving forests. The objectives of this study were: to analyze the provision and spatial dynamics of hydrological services under two forest cover change scenarios (oak and eucalyptus/pine) compared to the current shrubland-dominated landscape; and to evaluate their spatial trade-offs with biodiversity conservation value. The Vez watershed (250km2), in northwest Portugal, was used as case-study area. SWAT (Soil and Water Assessment Tool) was applied to simulate the provision of hydrological services (water supply quantity, timing and quality; soil erosion and flood regulation), and was calibrated against daily discharge, sediments, nitrates and evapotranspiration. Good agreement was obtained between model predictions and field measurements. The maps for each service under the different scenarios were produced at the Hydrologic Response Unit (HRU) level. Biodiversity conservation value was based on nature protection regimes and on expert valuation applied to a land cover map. Statistical correlations between hydrological services provision

  13. Biodiversity and Environmental Gradients Across the Tropical Pacific Islands: A New Strategy for Research and Conservation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mueller-Dombois, Dieter

    The theory of island biogeography of MacArthur and Wilson (1967) represents a first attempt at developing a unifying concept for biodiversity research across islands and fragmented biomes. It uses two physical parameters, distance (or isolation) and size of area to define species equilibria. This contribution expands on the theory by adding a third physical parameter, elevation (or topography), to focus on biodiversity relationships. This third parameter allows island ecosystems to be connected horizontally across Pacific-wide biomes. It also permits the establishment of ecological gradients across the Pacific to study and compare the structure and function of enriched versus impoverished biodiversities in similar habitats. In combination with this horizontal approach, a vertical approach is suggested for interdisciplinary research. For this, the fresh-water flow or hydrology is seen as the unifying parameter that links several ecosystems in an upland/lowland relationship. The two approaches represent a new strategy for biodiversity research and conservation in the Pacific area. A biodiversity transect with ILTER (International Long-Term Ecological Research) sites forming a network from Eastern and Northern Polynesia to Borneo, and including the oceanic archipelagoes near the American continents, is currently envisioned by the PSA (Pacific Science Association) Task Force on Biodiversity (Kitayama and Mueller-Dombois 1997). This new program, which has evolved from a first synthesis of Pacific island vegetation and landscapes (Mueller-Dombois and Fosberg 1998) is to become a contribution to the DIVERSITAS program launched in 1994 under the auspices of the IUBS (International Union of Biological Sciences) and the International Council of Scientific Unions in Paris, and by DIWPA (Diversitas in Western Pacific and Asia in Kyoto).

  14. Conserving biodiversity and ecosystem function through limited development: an empirical evaluation.

    PubMed

    Milder, Jeffrey C; Lassoie, James P; Bedford, Barbara L

    2008-02-01

    Suburban, exurban, and rural development in the United States consumes nearly 1 million hectares of land per year and is a leading threat to biodiversity. In response to this threat, conservation development has been advanced as a way to combine land development and land conservation while providing functional protection for natural resources. Yet, although conservation development techniques have been in use for decades, there have been few critical evaluations of their conservation effectiveness. We addressed this deficiency by assessing the conservation outcomes of one type of conservation development project: conservation and limited development projects (CLDPs). Conducted by land trusts, landowners, and developers, CLDPs use revenue from limited development to finance the protection of land and natural resources. We compared a sample of 10 CLDPs from the eastern United States with their respective baseline scenarios (conventional development) and with a sample of conservation subdivisions--a different conservation development technique characterized by higher-density development. To measure conservation success, we created an evaluation method containing eight indicators that quantify project impacts to terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems at the site and in the surrounding landscape. The CLDPs protected and managed threatened natural resources including rare species and ecological communities. In terms of conservation benefits, the CLDPs significantly outperformed their respective baseline scenarios and the conservation subdivisions. These results imply that CLDPs can offer a low-impact alternative to conventional development and a low-cost method for protecting land when conventional conservation techniques are too expensive. In addition, our evaluation method demonstrates how planners and developers can incorporate appropriate ecological considerations when designing, reviewing, and evaluating conservation development projects.

  15. Improving spatial prioritisation for remote marine regions: optimising biodiversity conservation and sustainable development trade-offs

    PubMed Central

    Moore, Cordelia H.; Radford, Ben T.; Possingham, Hugh P.; Heyward, Andrew J.; Stewart, Romola R.; Watts, Matthew E.; Prescott, Jim; Newman, Stephen J.; Harvey, Euan S.; Fisher, Rebecca; Bryce, Clay W.; Lowe, Ryan J.; Berry, Oliver; Espinosa-Gayosso, Alexis; Sporer, Errol; Saunders, Thor

    2016-01-01

    Creating large conservation zones in remote areas, with less intense stakeholder overlap and limited environmental information, requires periodic review to ensure zonation mitigates primary threats and fill gaps in representation, while achieving conservation targets. Follow-up reviews can utilise improved methods and data, potentially identifying new planning options yielding a desirable balance between stakeholder interests. This research explored a marine zoning system in north-west Australia–a biodiverse area with poorly documented biota. Although remote, it is economically significant (i.e. petroleum extraction and fishing). Stakeholder engagement was used to source the best available biodiversity and socio-economic data and advanced spatial analyses produced 765 high resolution data layers, including 674 species distributions representing 119 families. Gap analysis revealed the current proposed zoning system as inadequate, with 98.2% of species below the Convention on Biological Diversity 10% representation targets. A systematic conservation planning algorithm Maxan provided zoning options to meet representation targets while balancing this with industry interests. Resulting scenarios revealed that conservation targets could be met with minimal impacts on petroleum and fishing industries, with estimated losses of 4.9% and 7.2% respectively. The approach addressed important knowledge gaps and provided a powerful and transparent method to reconcile industry interests with marine conservation. PMID:27556689

  16. Improving spatial prioritisation for remote marine regions: optimising biodiversity conservation and sustainable development trade-offs.

    PubMed

    Moore, Cordelia H; Radford, Ben T; Possingham, Hugh P; Heyward, Andrew J; Stewart, Romola R; Watts, Matthew E; Prescott, Jim; Newman, Stephen J; Harvey, Euan S; Fisher, Rebecca; Bryce, Clay W; Lowe, Ryan J; Berry, Oliver; Espinosa-Gayosso, Alexis; Sporer, Errol; Saunders, Thor

    2016-08-24

    Creating large conservation zones in remote areas, with less intense stakeholder overlap and limited environmental information, requires periodic review to ensure zonation mitigates primary threats and fill gaps in representation, while achieving conservation targets. Follow-up reviews can utilise improved methods and data, potentially identifying new planning options yielding a desirable balance between stakeholder interests. This research explored a marine zoning system in north-west Australia-a biodiverse area with poorly documented biota. Although remote, it is economically significant (i.e. petroleum extraction and fishing). Stakeholder engagement was used to source the best available biodiversity and socio-economic data and advanced spatial analyses produced 765 high resolution data layers, including 674 species distributions representing 119 families. Gap analysis revealed the current proposed zoning system as inadequate, with 98.2% of species below the Convention on Biological Diversity 10% representation targets. A systematic conservation planning algorithm Maxan provided zoning options to meet representation targets while balancing this with industry interests. Resulting scenarios revealed that conservation targets could be met with minimal impacts on petroleum and fishing industries, with estimated losses of 4.9% and 7.2% respectively. The approach addressed important knowledge gaps and provided a powerful and transparent method to reconcile industry interests with marine conservation.

  17. Accommodating Dynamic Oceanographic Processes and Pelagic Biodiversity in Marine Conservation Planning

    PubMed Central

    Grantham, Hedley S.; Game, Edward T.; Lombard, Amanda T.; Hobday, Alistair J.; Richardson, Anthony J.; Beckley, Lynnath E.; Pressey, Robert L.; Huggett, Jenny A.; Coetzee, Janet C.; van der Lingen, Carl D.; Petersen, Samantha L.; Merkle, Dagmar; Possingham, Hugh P.

    2011-01-01

    Pelagic ecosystems support a significant and vital component of the ocean's productivity and biodiversity. They are also heavily exploited and, as a result, are the focus of numerous spatial planning initiatives. Over the past decade, there has been increasing enthusiasm for protected areas as a tool for pelagic conservation, however, few have been implemented. Here we demonstrate an approach to plan protected areas that address the physical and biological dynamics typical of the pelagic realm. Specifically, we provide an example of an approach to planning protected areas that integrates pelagic and benthic conservation in the southern Benguela and Agulhas Bank ecosystems off South Africa. Our aim was to represent species of importance to fisheries and species of conservation concern within protected areas. In addition to representation, we ensured that protected areas were designed to consider pelagic dynamics, characterized from time-series data on key oceanographic processes, together with data on the abundance of small pelagic fishes. We found that, to have the highest likelihood of reaching conservation targets, protected area selection should be based on time-specific data rather than data averaged across time. More generally, we argue that innovative methods are needed to conserve ephemeral and dynamic pelagic biodiversity. PMID:21311757

  18. Biodiversity conservation in agricultural landscapes: challenges and opportunities of coffee agroforests in the Western Ghats, India.

    PubMed

    Garcia, Claude A; Bhagwat, Shonil A; Ghazoul, Jaboury; Nath, Cheryl D; Nanaya, Konerira M; Kushalappa, Chepudira G; Raghuramulu, Yenugula; Nasi, Robert; Vaast, Philippe

    2010-04-01

    The new approaches advocated by the conservation community to integrate conservation and livelihood development now explicitly address landscape mosaics composed of agricultural and forested land rather than only protected areas and largely intact forests. We refer specifically to a call by Harvey et al. (2008) to develop a new approach based on six strategies to integrate biodiversity conservation with sustainable livelihoods in Mesoamerican landscape mosaics. We examined the applicability of this proposal to the coffee agroforests of the Western Ghats, India. Of the six strategies, only one directly addresses livelihood conditions. Their approach has a clear emphasis on conservation and, as currently formulated risks repeating the failures of past integrated conservation and development projects. It fails to place the aspirations of farmers at the core of the agenda. Thus, although we acknowledge and share the broad vision and many of the ideas proposed by this approach, we urge more balanced priority setting by emphasizing people as much as biodiversity through a careful consideration of local livelihood needs and aspirations.

  19. Improving spatial prioritisation for remote marine regions: optimising biodiversity conservation and sustainable development trade-offs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moore, Cordelia H.; Radford, Ben T.; Possingham, Hugh P.; Heyward, Andrew J.; Stewart, Romola R.; Watts, Matthew E.; Prescott, Jim; Newman, Stephen J.; Harvey, Euan S.; Fisher, Rebecca; Bryce, Clay W.; Lowe, Ryan J.; Berry, Oliver; Espinosa-Gayosso, Alexis; Sporer, Errol; Saunders, Thor

    2016-08-01

    Creating large conservation zones in remote areas, with less intense stakeholder overlap and limited environmental information, requires periodic review to ensure zonation mitigates primary threats and fill gaps in representation, while achieving conservation targets. Follow-up reviews can utilise improved methods and data, potentially identifying new planning options yielding a desirable balance between stakeholder interests. This research explored a marine zoning system in north-west Australia–a biodiverse area with poorly documented biota. Although remote, it is economically significant (i.e. petroleum extraction and fishing). Stakeholder engagement was used to source the best available biodiversity and socio-economic data and advanced spatial analyses produced 765 high resolution data layers, including 674 species distributions representing 119 families. Gap analysis revealed the current proposed zoning system as inadequate, with 98.2% of species below the Convention on Biological Diversity 10% representation targets. A systematic conservation planning algorithm Maxan provided zoning options to meet representation targets while balancing this with industry interests. Resulting scenarios revealed that conservation targets could be met with minimal impacts on petroleum and fishing industries, with estimated losses of 4.9% and 7.2% respectively. The approach addressed important knowledge gaps and provided a powerful and transparent method to reconcile industry interests with marine conservation.

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-01-01

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

  1. Conservation planning for offsetting the impacts of development: a case study of biodiversity and renewable energy in the Mojave Desert

    USGS Publications Warehouse

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

    2015-01-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

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

  3. When worlds collide: challenges and opportunities for conservation of biodiversity in the Hawaiian Islands

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Atkinson, Carter T.; Pratt, Thane K.; Banko, Paul C.; Jacobi, James D.; Woodworth, Bethany L.

    2013-01-01

    This chapter identifies four key challenges and opportunities for long-term conservation of biodiversity in the Hawaii's Islands. Following are the challenges that need to be resolved for remaining species of native forest birds to survive into the next century: invasive species, landscape processes, social factors, and climate change. These challenges are also relevant to other threatened terrestrial taxonomic groups (i.e., plants and invertebrates) in the Hawaiian Islands. Such threats are familiar to conservation biologists the world over, but rarely do they act as synergistically as they do in the Hawaiian Islands. The chapter reviews conservation successes and failures in Hawaii, and provides an example of the possible future course of conservation in other island communities.

  4. Biodiversity

    SciTech Connect

    Wilson, E.O.; Peter, F.M.

    1988-01-01

    In tropical forests, on coral reefs, and in other threatened habitats, countless plant, animal, and microbial species face possible extinction - their names unknown, their numbers uncounted, their value unreckoned. Although popular attention has focused on the plight of more visible and widely known species like the whooping crane or the African elephant, most-experts agree that the loss of less-obvious organisms could be much more devastating. This is the subject of the volume. It calls attention to a most urgent global problem: the rapidly accelerating loss of plant and animal species to increasing human-population pressure and the demands of economic development. The book explores biodiversity from a wide variety of viewpoints.

  5. Four barriers to the global understanding of biodiversity conservation: wealth, language, geographical location and security.

    PubMed

    Amano, Tatsuya; Sutherland, William J

    2013-04-07

    Global biodiversity conservation is seriously challenged by gaps and heterogeneity in the geographical coverage of existing information. Nevertheless, the key barriers to the collection and compilation of biodiversity information at a global scale have yet to be identified. We show that wealth, language, geographical location and security each play an important role in explaining spatial variations in data availability in four different types of biodiversity databases. The number of records per square kilometre is high in countries with high per capita gross domestic product (GDP), high proportion of English speakers and high security levels, and those located close to the country hosting the database; but these are not necessarily countries with high biodiversity. These factors are considered to affect data availability by impeding either the activities of scientific research or active international communications. Our results demonstrate that efforts to solve environmental problems at a global scale will gain significantly by focusing scientific education, communication, research and collaboration in low-GDP countries with fewer English speakers and located far from Western countries that host the global databases; countries that have experienced conflict may also benefit. Findings of this study may be broadly applicable to other fields that require the compilation of scientific knowledge at a global level.

  6. Biodiversity conservation and drug discovery: Can they be combined? The Suriname and Madagascar experiences

    PubMed Central

    Cao, Shugeng; Kingston, David G. I.

    2009-01-01

    The approach to new drugs through natural products has proved to be the single most successful strategy for the discovery of new drugs, but in recent years its use has been deemphasized by many pharmaceutical companies in favor of approaches based on combinatorial chemistry and genomics, among others. Drug discovery from natural sources requires continued access to plant, marine, and microbial biomass, and so the preservation of tropical rainforests is an important part of our drug discovery program. Sadly, many of the tropical forests of the world are under severe environmental pressure, and deforestation is a serious problem in most tropical countries. One way to combat this loss is to demonstrate their value as potential sources of new pharmaceutical or agrochemical products. As part of an effort to integrate biodiversity conservation and drug discovery with economic development, we initiated an International Cooperative biodiversity Group (ICBG) to discover potential pharmaceuticals from the plant biodiversity of Suriname and Madagascar. The Group, established with funding from agencies of the United States government, involved participants from the USA, Suriname, and Madagascar. The basic approach was to search for bioactive plants in the Suriname and Malagasy flora, and to isolate their bioactive constituents by the best available methods, but the work included capacity building as well as research. Progress on this project will be reported, drawing on results obtained from the isolation of bioactive natural products from Suriname and Madagascar. The benefits of this general approach to biodiversity and drug discovery will also be discussed. PMID:20161050

  7. Four barriers to the global understanding of biodiversity conservation: wealth, language, geographical location and security

    PubMed Central

    Amano, Tatsuya; Sutherland, William J.

    2013-01-01

    Global biodiversity conservation is seriously challenged by gaps and heterogeneity in the geographical coverage of existing information. Nevertheless, the key barriers to the collection and compilation of biodiversity information at a global scale have yet to be identified. We show that wealth, language, geographical location and security each play an important role in explaining spatial variations in data availability in four different types of biodiversity databases. The number of records per square kilometre is high in countries with high per capita gross domestic product (GDP), high proportion of English speakers and high security levels, and those located close to the country hosting the database; but these are not necessarily countries with high biodiversity. These factors are considered to affect data availability by impeding either the activities of scientific research or active international communications. Our results demonstrate that efforts to solve environmental problems at a global scale will gain significantly by focusing scientific education, communication, research and collaboration in low-GDP countries with fewer English speakers and located far from Western countries that host the global databases; countries that have experienced conflict may also benefit. Findings of this study may be broadly applicable to other fields that require the compilation of scientific knowledge at a global level. PMID:23390102

  8. Ecosystem service provision: an operational way for marine biodiversity conservation and management.

    PubMed

    Cognetti, Giuseppe; Maltagliati, Ferruccio

    2010-11-01

    Since no extensive conceptual framework has been developed on the issues of ecosystem service (ES) and service provider (SP) in the marine environment, we have made an attempt to apply these to the conservation and management of marine biodiversity. Within this context, an accurate individuation of SPs, namely the biological component of a given ecosystem that supports human activities is fundamental. SPs are the agents responsible for making the ES-based approach operational. The application of these concepts to the marine environment should be based on an model different to the terrestrial one. In the latter, the basic model envisages a matrix of a human-altered landscape with fragments of original biodiversity; conversely, in the marine environment the model provides fragments where human activities are carried out and the matrix is represented by the original biodiversity. We have identified three main classes of ES provision: in natural, disturbed and human-controlled environments. Economic valuation of marine ESs is an essential condition for making conservation strategies financially sustainable, as it may stimulate the perceived need for investing in protection and exploitation of marine resources.

  9. Sustainable, efficient livestock production with high biodiversity and good welfare for animals.

    PubMed

    Broom, D M; Galindo, F A; Murgueitio, E

    2013-11-22

    What is the future for livestock agriculture in the world? Consumers have concerns about sustainability but many widely used livestock production methods do not satisfy consumers' requirements for a sustainable system. However, production can be sustainable, occurring in environments that: supply the needs of the animals resulting in good welfare, allow coexistence with a wide diversity of organisms native to the area, minimize carbon footprint and provide a fair lifestyle for the people working there. Conservation need not just involve tiny islands of natural vegetation in a barren world of agriculture, as there can be great increases in biodiversity in farmed areas. Herbivores, especially ruminants that consume materials inedible by humans, are important for human food in the future. However, their diet should not be just ground-level plants. Silvopastoral systems, pastures with shrubs and trees as well as herbage, are described which are normally more productive than pasture alone. When compared with widely used livestock production systems, silvopastoral systems can provide efficient feed conversion, higher biodiversity, enhanced connectivity between habitat patches and better animal welfare, so they can replace existing systems in many parts of the world and should be further developed.

  10. Sustainable, efficient livestock production with high biodiversity and good welfare for animals

    PubMed Central

    Broom, D. M.; Galindo, F. A.; Murgueitio, E.

    2013-01-01

    What is the future for livestock agriculture in the world? Consumers have concerns about sustainability but many widely used livestock production methods do not satisfy consumers' requirements for a sustainable system. However, production can be sustainable, occurring in environments that: supply the needs of the animals resulting in good welfare, allow coexistence with a wide diversity of organisms native to the area, minimize carbon footprint and provide a fair lifestyle for the people working there. Conservation need not just involve tiny islands of natural vegetation in a barren world of agriculture, as there can be great increases in biodiversity in farmed areas. Herbivores, especially ruminants that consume materials inedible by humans, are important for human food in the future. However, their diet should not be just ground-level plants. Silvopastoral systems, pastures with shrubs and trees as well as herbage, are described which are normally more productive than pasture alone. When compared with widely used livestock production systems, silvopastoral systems can provide efficient feed conversion, higher biodiversity, enhanced connectivity between habitat patches and better animal welfare, so they can replace existing systems in many parts of the world and should be further developed. PMID:24068362

  11. Using economic instruments to overcome obstacles to in situ conservation of biodiversity.

    PubMed

    McNeely, Jeffrey A

    2006-03-01

    The leading direct cause of the loss of biodiversity is habitat alteration and disruption. If we are to address this cause directly, we need to find ways of changing the behavior of rural people. Experience has shown that this is done most effectively through the use of economic instruments, ranging from taxes that discourage over-exploitation, to direct payments for conservation activities carried out by rural land-owners or those occupying the land. In many parts of the world, governments provide incentives such as tax breaks to private land-owners. Other countries recognize specific use rights on particular parts of the land, enabling the land-owners to earn appropriate benefits. Since many protected areas have resident human populations, it is especially important that they be encouraged to contribute to the objectives of the protected area, and economic incentives offer an important way of doing so; they might, for example, be given employment in the protected area or in associated tourism activities. Direct payments to farmers for conserving watersheds is becoming increasingly popular, in both developed and developing countries. Improved conservation will require both removing perverse subsidies and developing a wide range of approaches for rewarding land-owners for biodiversity conservation activities.

  12. Pseudoreplication in tropical forests and the resulting effects on biodiversity conservation.

    PubMed

    Ramage, Benjamin S; Sheil, Douglas; Salim, Hannah M W; Fletcher, Christine; Mustafa, Nur-Zati A; Luruthusamay, Joann C; Harrison, Rhett D; Butod, Elizabeth; Dzulkiply, Ahmad Dzamir; Kassim, Abd Rahman; Potts, Matthew D

    2013-04-01

    Tropical forest ecosystems are threatened by habitat conversion and other anthropogenic actions. Timber production forests can augment the conservation value of primary forest reserves, but studies of logging effects often yield contradictory findings and thus inhibit efforts to develop clear conservation strategies. We hypothesized that much of this variability reflects a common methodological flaw, simple pseudoreplication, that confounds logging effects with preexisting spatial variation. We reviewed recent studies of the effects of logging on biodiversity in tropical forests (n = 77) and found that 68% were definitively pseudoreplicated while only 7% were definitively free of pseudoreplication. The remaining proportion could not be clearly categorized. In addition, we collected compositional data on 7 taxa in 24 primary forest research plots and systematically analyzed subsets of these plots to calculate the probability that a pseudoreplicated comparison would incorrectly identify a treatment effect. Rates of false inference (i.e., the spurious detection of a treatment effect) were >0.5 for 2 taxa, 0.3-0.5 for 2 taxa, and <0.3 for 3 taxa. Our findings demonstrate that tropical conservation strategies are being informed by a body of literature that is rife with unwarranted inferences. Addressing pseudoreplication is essential for accurately assessing biodiversity in logged forests, identifying the relative merits of specific management practices and landscape configurations, and effectively balancing conservation with timber production in tropical forests.

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

    USGS Publications Warehouse

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

    2016-01-01

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

  14. Remote sensing of ecology, biodiversity and conservation: a review from the perspective of remote sensing specialists.

    PubMed

    Wang, Kai; Franklin, Steven E; Guo, Xulin; Cattet, Marc

    2010-01-01

    Remote sensing, the science of obtaining information via noncontact recording, has swept the fields of ecology, biodiversity and conservation (EBC). Several quality review papers have contributed to this field. However, these papers often discuss the issues from the standpoint of an ecologist or a biodiversity specialist. This review focuses on the spaceborne remote sensing of EBC from the perspective of remote sensing specialists, i.e., it is organized in the context of state-of-the-art remote sensing technology, including instruments and techniques. Herein, the instruments to be discussed consist of high spatial resolution, hyperspectral, thermal infrared, small-satellite constellation, and LIDAR sensors; and the techniques refer to image classification, vegetation index (VI), inversion algorithm, data fusion, and the integration of remote sensing (RS) and geographic information system (GIS).

  15. Remote Sensing of Ecology, Biodiversity and Conservation: A Review from the Perspective of Remote Sensing Specialists

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Kai; Franklin, Steven E.; Guo, Xulin; Cattet, Marc

    2010-01-01

    Remote sensing, the science of obtaining information via noncontact recording, has swept the fields of ecology, biodiversity and conservation (EBC). Several quality review papers have contributed to this field. However, these papers often discuss the issues from the standpoint of an ecologist or a biodiversity specialist. This review focuses on the spaceborne remote sensing of EBC from the perspective of remote sensing specialists, i.e., it is organized in the context of state-of-the-art remote sensing technology, including instruments and techniques. Herein, the instruments to be discussed consist of high spatial resolution, hyperspectral, thermal infrared, small-satellite constellation, and LIDAR sensors; and the techniques refer to image classification, vegetation index (VI), inversion algorithm, data fusion, and the integration of remote sensing (RS) and geographic information system (GIS). PMID:22163432

  16. Sixteen years of change in the global terrestrial human footprint and implications for biodiversity conservation

    PubMed Central

    Venter, Oscar; Sanderson, Eric W.; Magrach, Ainhoa; Allan, James R.; Beher, Jutta; Jones, Kendall R.; Possingham, Hugh P.; Laurance, William F.; Wood, Peter; Fekete, Balázs M.; Levy, Marc A.; Watson, James E. M.

    2016-01-01

    Human pressures on the environment are changing spatially and temporally, with profound implications for the planet's biodiversity and human economies. Here we use recently available data on infrastructure, land cover and human access into natural areas to construct a globally standardized measure of the cumulative human footprint on the terrestrial environment at 1 km2 resolution from 1993 to 2009. We note that while the human population has increased by 23% and the world economy has grown 153%, the human footprint has increased by just 9%. Still, 75% the planet's land surface is experiencing measurable human pressures. Moreover, pressures are perversely intense, widespread and rapidly intensifying in places with high biodiversity. Encouragingly, we discover decreases in environmental pressures in the wealthiest countries and those with strong control of corruption. Clearly the human footprint on Earth is changing, yet there are still opportunities for conservation gains. PMID:27552116

  17. Sixteen years of change in the global terrestrial human footprint and implications for biodiversity conservation.

    PubMed

    Venter, Oscar; Sanderson, Eric W; Magrach, Ainhoa; Allan, James R; Beher, Jutta; Jones, Kendall R; Possingham, Hugh P; Laurance, William F; Wood, Peter; Fekete, Balázs M; Levy, Marc A; Watson, James E M

    2016-08-23

    Human pressures on the environment are changing spatially and temporally, with profound implications for the planet's biodiversity and human economies. Here we use recently available data on infrastructure, land cover and human access into natural areas to construct a globally standardized measure of the cumulative human footprint on the terrestrial environment at 1 km(2) resolution from 1993 to 2009. We note that while the human population has increased by 23% and the world economy has grown 153%, the human footprint has increased by just 9%. Still, 75% the planet's land surface is experiencing measurable human pressures. Moreover, pressures are perversely intense, widespread and rapidly intensifying in places with high biodiversity. Encouragingly, we discover decreases in environmental pressures in the wealthiest countries and those with strong control of corruption. Clearly the human footprint on Earth is changing, yet there are still opportunities for conservation gains.

  18. Sixteen years of change in the global terrestrial human footprint and implications for biodiversity conservation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Venter, Oscar; Sanderson, Eric W.; Magrach, Ainhoa; Allan, James R.; Beher, Jutta; Jones, Kendall R.; Possingham, Hugh P.; Laurance, William F.; Wood, Peter; Fekete, Balázs M.; Levy, Marc A.; Watson, James E. M.

    2016-08-01

    Human pressures on the environment are changing spatially and temporally, with profound implications for the planet's biodiversity and human economies. Here we use recently available data on infrastructure, land cover and human access into natural areas to construct a globally standardized measure of the cumulative human footprint on the terrestrial environment at 1 km2 resolution from 1993 to 2009. We note that while the human population has increased by 23% and the world economy has grown 153%, the human footprint has increased by just 9%. Still, 75% the planet's land surface is experiencing measurable human pressures. Moreover, pressures are perversely intense, widespread and rapidly intensifying in places with high biodiversity. Encouragingly, we discover decreases in environmental pressures in the wealthiest countries and those with strong control of corruption. Clearly the human footprint on Earth is changing, yet there are still opportunities for conservation gains.

  19. Biodiversity

    SciTech Connect

    Dobson, A. ); Carper, R. )

    1993-10-30

    Traditional herbalists act as a first-level screen for plants which may contain chemicals with significant pharmaceutical potential. Unfortunately, the destruction of rain forests is likely to lead to the extinction of many plant species before their potential can be explored. 165,000 km[sup 2] of tropical forest and 90,000 km[sup 2] of range land are destroyed or degraded each year, an annual attrition rate of about 1% for tropical forest. If these losses continue until only land set aside in parks is left, 66% of plant and 69% of animal species may be lost. The burning of forests to clear land for human settlement also makes a significant contribution to the greenhouse gases that are raising global mean temperatures. There are synergisms--here between rainforest destruction, loss of biodiversity, and global climate change--with potential impacts on health. Some aspects will be explored more fully in the contributions on vector-borne diseases and direct impacts and in the collaborative review of monitoring with which the series ends.

  20. Linking freshwater fishery management to global food security and biodiversity conservation.

    PubMed

    McIntyre, Peter B; Reidy Liermann, Catherine A; Revenga, Carmen

    2016-10-24

    Fisheries are an essential ecosystem service, but catches from freshwaters are often overlooked. Hundreds of millions of people around the world benefit from low-cost protein, recreation, and commerce provided by freshwater fisheries, particularly in regions where alternative sources of nutrition and employment are scarce. Here, we derive a gridded global map of riverine fisheries and assess its implications for biodiversity conservation, fishery sustainability, and food security. Catches increase with river discharge and human population density, and 90% of global catch comes from river basins with above-average stress levels. Fish richness and catches are positively but not causally correlated, revealing that fishing pressure is most intense in rivers where potential impacts on biodiversity are highest. Merging our catch analysis with nutritional and socioeconomic data, we find that freshwater fisheries provide the equivalent of all dietary animal protein for 158 million people. Poor and undernourished populations are particularly reliant on inland fisheries compared with marine or aquaculture sources. The spatial coincidence of productive freshwater fisheries and low food security highlights the critical role of rivers and lakes in providing locally sourced, low-cost protein. At the same time, intensive fishing in regions where rivers are already degraded by other stressors may undermine efforts to conserve biodiversity. This syndrome of poverty, nutritional deficiency, fishery dependence, and extrinsic threats to biodiverse river ecosystems underscores the high stakes for improving fishery management. Our enhanced spatial data on estimated catches can facilitate the inclusion of inland fisheries in environmental planning to protect both food security and species diversity.

  1. Linking freshwater fishery management to global food security and biodiversity conservation

    PubMed Central

    McIntyre, Peter B.; Reidy Liermann, Catherine A.; Revenga, Carmen

    2016-01-01

    Fisheries are an essential ecosystem service, but catches from freshwaters are often overlooked. Hundreds of millions of people around the world benefit from low-cost protein, recreation, and commerce provided by freshwater fisheries, particularly in regions where alternative sources of nutrition and employment are scarce. Here, we derive a gridded global map of riverine fisheries and assess its implications for biodiversity conservation, fishery sustainability, and food security. Catches increase with river discharge and human population density, and 90% of global catch comes from river basins with above-average stress levels. Fish richness and catches are positively but not causally correlated, revealing that fishing pressure is most intense in rivers where potential impacts on biodiversity are highest. Merging our catch analysis with nutritional and socioeconomic data, we find that freshwater fisheries provide the equivalent of all dietary animal protein for 158 million people. Poor and undernourished populations are particularly reliant on inland fisheries compared with marine or aquaculture sources. The spatial coincidence of productive freshwater fisheries and low food security highlights the critical role of rivers and lakes in providing locally sourced, low-cost protein. At the same time, intensive fishing in regions where rivers are already degraded by other stressors may undermine efforts to conserve biodiversity. This syndrome of poverty, nutritional deficiency, fishery dependence, and extrinsic threats to biodiverse river ecosystems underscores the high stakes for improving fishery management. Our enhanced spatial data on estimated catches can facilitate the inclusion of inland fisheries in environmental planning to protect both food security and species diversity. PMID:27791055

  2. Conservation Action Planning: Lessons learned from the St. Marys River watershed biodiversity conservation planning process

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Patterson, Tamatha A.; Grundel, Ralph

    2014-01-01

    Conservation Action Planning (CAP) is an adaptive management planning process refined by The Nature Conservancy (TNC) and embraced worldwide as the Open Standards for the Practice of Conservation. The CAP process facilitates open, multi-institutional collaboration on a common conservation agenda through organized actions and quantified results. While specifically designed for conservation efforts, the framework is adaptable and flexible to multiple scales and can be used for any collaborative planning effort. The CAP framework addresses inception; design and development of goals, measures, and strategies; and plan implementation and evaluation. The specific components of the CAP include defining the project scope and conservation targets; assessing the ecological viability; ascertaining threats and surrounding situation; identifying opportunities and designing strategies for action; and implementing actions and monitoring results. In 2007, TNC and a multidisciplinary graduate student team from the University of Michigan's School of Natural Resources and Environment initiated a CAP for the St. Marys River, the connecting channel between Lake Superior and Lake Huron, and its local watershed. The students not only gained experience in conservation planning, but also learned lessons that notably benefited the CAP process and were valuable for any successful collaborative effort—a dedicated core team improved product quality, accelerated the timeline, and provided necessary support for ongoing efforts; an academic approach in preparation for engagement in the planning process brought applicable scientific research to the forefront, enhanced workshop facilitation, and improved stakeholder participation; and early and continuous interactions with regional stakeholders improved cooperation and built a supportive network for collaboration.

  3. Forget energy conservation - think energy efficiency

    SciTech Connect

    Decker, D.A.

    1996-12-31

    {open_quotes}CONSERVE ENERGY: Please Turn Off The Lights!{close_quotes} Many buildings constructed before 1975 have the peeling remains of those green or orange stickers on light switches. They are the remnants of a U.S. energy policy gone bad. Twenty years ago, energy conservation meant telling employees to wear sweaters to work and applying stickers to remind people to turn off the lights. Neither worked. People who see those old stickers probably don`t know that a quiet revolution has taken place inside thousands of public and commercial buildings. Thanks to new technology and a new attitude about energy, you can forget sweaters and switches. For example... (1) Motion sensors automatically turn off fights when you leave the room. (2) Computers determine when energy rates go down to get the best value. (3) Personal environmental modules let office workers set their cubicle`s heating and lighting levels. These days, energy efficiency is equated with good business. It can increase productivity, create jobs, and reduce pollution -- all with very little effort. That`s why it`s called energy efficiency, not energy conservation. And energy efficiency is good government. If Congress truly is committed to lowering taxes and reducing the budget deficit, members should first look at ways to lower the nation`s energy bill through energy efficiency. It is in the best interests of the energy efficiency industry to work together and promote these benefits.

  4. Role of DNA barcoding in marine biodiversity assessment and conservation: An update

    PubMed Central

    Trivedi, Subrata; Aloufi, Abdulhadi A.; Ansari, Abid A.; Ghosh, Sankar K.

    2015-01-01

    More than two third area of our planet is covered by oceans and assessment of marine biodiversity is a challenging task. With the increasing global population, there is a tendency to exploit marine resources for food, energy and other requirements. This puts pressure on the fragile marine environment and necessitates sustainable conservation efforts. Marine species identification using traditional taxonomical methods is often burdened with taxonomic controversies. Here we discuss the comparatively new concept of DNA barcoding and its significance in marine perspective. This molecular technique can be useful in the assessment of cryptic species which is widespread in marine environment and linking the different life cycle stages to the adult which is difficult to accomplish in the marine ecosystem. Other advantages of DNA barcoding include authentication and safety assessment of seafood, wildlife forensics, conservation genetics and detection of invasive alien species (IAS). Global DNA barcoding efforts in the marine habitat include MarBOL, CeDAMar, CMarZ, SHARK-BOL, etc. An overview on DNA barcoding of different marine groups ranging from the microbes to mammals is revealed. In conjugation with newer and faster techniques like high-throughput sequencing, DNA barcoding can serve as an effective modern tool in marine biodiversity assessment and conservation. PMID:26980996

  5. Biodiversity inventories and conservation of the marine fishes of Bootless Bay, Papua New Guinea

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background The effective management and conservation of biodiversity is predicated on clearly defined conservation targets. Species number is frequently used as a metric for conservation prioritization and monitoring changes in ecosystem health. We conducted a series of synoptic surveys focusing on the fishes of the Bootless Bay region of Papua New Guinea to generate a checklist of fishes of the region. Bootless Bay lies directly south of Port Moresby, the capital of Papua New Guinea, and experiences the highest human population density of any marine area in the country. Our checklist will set a baseline against which future environmental changes can be tracked. Results We generated a checklist of 488 fish species in 72 families found in Bootless Bay during a two-week sampling effort. Using incident-based methods of species estimation, we extrapolate there to be approximately 940 fish species in Bootless Bay, one of the lowest reported numbers in Papua New Guinea. Conclusions Our data suggest that the Bootless Bay ecosystem of Papua New Guinea, while diverse in absolute terms, has lower fish biodiversity compared to other shallow marine areas within the country. These differences in faunal diversity are most likely a combination of unequal sampling effort as well as biophysical factors within Bootless Bay compounded by historical and/or contemporary anthropogenic disturbances. PMID:22849436

  6. Using optimization methods to align food production and biodiversity conservation beyond land sharing and land sparing.

    PubMed

    Butsic, Van; Kuemmerle, Tobias

    2015-04-01

    Aligning food production with biodiversity conservation is one of the greatest challenges of our time. One framing of this challenge is the land-sharing vs. land-sparing debate. Much empirical research has focused on identifying the relationship between agricultural yields and species populations, and using the relative number of species with particular relationships to inform landscape-level management. We feel this is misguided, as such an approach does not guarantee the existence of every species of conservation concern. Here, we show that constrained optimization methods can be used to identify landscape-level solutions which maximize agricultural yields and populations for any number of species. Our results suggest that the relative number of species with particular yield-density curves is not a good indicator as to how landscapes should be managed. Likewise, choosing between blanket sharing or sparing strategies leads to suboptimal outcomes at the landscape scale in many cases. Our framework makes maximum use of the rich information contained in yield-density curves to move beyond black-and-white choices and toward more nuanced, context-specific solutions to aligning biodiversity conservation and agricultural production. Such optimal landscapes will likely have features of both sharing and sparing strategies.

  7. Biodiversity of Coreoidea and Pentatomidae (Heteroptera) from Atlantic forest protected areas. Insights into their conservation.

    PubMed

    Dellapé, Gimena; Colpo, Karine D; Melo, María C; Montemayor, Sara I; Dellapé, Pablo M

    2017-07-24

    Although the majority of threatened species are likely to be tropical insects, knowledge of the diversity, ecological role and impact of insect biodiversity loss on ecosystem processes is very limited. Specimens belonging to four families of Heteroptera: Pentatomidae, Coreidae, Alydidae and Rhopalidae, were collected from a protected area in the Paraná Forest, the largest ecoregion of the Atlantic Forest, in Argentina. The assemblages were characterized and the biodiversity estimated, and they were compared with the assemblages found in five other protected areas in the Brazilian Atlantic Forest. In our study area, Pentatomidae had the greatest richness and diversity; Coreidae was the second most diverse family, with highest sampling deficit, highest percentage of singletons, and lowest inventory completeness; and Rhopalidae was the best sampled family with asymptotic rarefaction curves. We explored the application of the Species Conservation Importance index, following four criteria, to evaluate the relative importance of the pentatomid species studied and its usefulness for assigning conservation values to areas. We found similar Site Conservation Values among the six areas and noted that the use of criteria was limited by the lack of information, being crucial to increase the knowledge of most of the species.

  8. Role of DNA barcoding in marine biodiversity assessment and conservation: An update.

    PubMed

    Trivedi, Subrata; Aloufi, Abdulhadi A; Ansari, Abid A; Ghosh, Sankar K

    2016-03-01

    More than two third area of our planet is covered by oceans and assessment of marine biodiversity is a challenging task. With the increasing global population, there is a tendency to exploit marine resources for food, energy and other requirements. This puts pressure on the fragile marine environment and necessitates sustainable conservation efforts. Marine species identification using traditional taxonomical methods is often burdened with taxonomic controversies. Here we discuss the comparatively new concept of DNA barcoding and its significance in marine perspective. This molecular technique can be useful in the assessment of cryptic species which is widespread in marine environment and linking the different life cycle stages to the adult which is difficult to accomplish in the marine ecosystem. Other advantages of DNA barcoding include authentication and safety assessment of seafood, wildlife forensics, conservation genetics and detection of invasive alien species (IAS). Global DNA barcoding efforts in the marine habitat include MarBOL, CeDAMar, CMarZ, SHARK-BOL, etc. An overview on DNA barcoding of different marine groups ranging from the microbes to mammals is revealed. In conjugation with newer and faster techniques like high-throughput sequencing, DNA barcoding can serve as an effective modern tool in marine biodiversity assessment and conservation.

  9. Role of eucalypt and other planted forests in biodiversity conservation and the provision of biodiversity-related services

    Treesearch

    Eckehard G. Brockerhoff; Hervé Jactel; John A. Parrotta; Silvio F.B. Ferraz

    2013-01-01

    Forests provide important habitat for much of the world’s biodiversity, and the continuing global deforestation is one of our greatest environmental concerns. Planted forests represent an increasing proportion of the global forest area and partly compensate for the loss of natural forest in terms of forest area, habitat for biodiversity and ecological function. At...

  10. Sleeping sickness and its relationship with development and biodiversity conservation in the Luangwa Valley, Zambia.

    PubMed

    Anderson, Neil E; Mubanga, Joseph; Machila, Noreen; Atkinson, Peter M; Dzingirai, Vupenyu; Welburn, Susan C

    2015-04-15

    The Luangwa Valley has a long historical association with Human African Trypanosomiasis (HAT) and is a recognised geographical focus of this disease. It is also internationally acclaimed for its high biodiversity and contains many valuable habitats. Local inhabitants of the valley have developed sustainable land use systems in co-existence with wildlife over centuries, based on non-livestock keeping practices largely due to the threat from African Animal Trypanosomiasis. Historical epidemics of human sleeping sickness have influenced how and where communities have settled and have had a profound impact on development in the Valley. Historical attempts to control trypanosomiasis have also had a negative impact on conservation of biodiversity.Centralised control over wildlife utilisation has marginalised local communities from managing the wildlife resource. To some extent this has been reversed by the implementation of community based natural resource management programmes in the latter half of the 20(th) century and the Luangwa Valley provides some of the earliest examples of such programmes. More recently, there has been significant uncontrolled migration of people into the mid-Luangwa Valley driven by pressure on resources in the eastern plateau region, encouragement from local chiefs and economic development in the tourist centre of Mfuwe. This has brought changing land-use patterns, most notably agricultural development through livestock keeping and cotton production. These changes threaten to alter the endemically stable patterns of HAT transmission and could have significant impacts on ecosystem health and ecosystem services.In this paper we review the history of HAT in the context of conservation and development and consider the impacts current changes may have on this complex social-ecological system. We conclude that improved understanding is required to identify specific circumstances where win-win trade-offs can be achieved between the conservation of

  11. The development of biodiversity conservation measures in China's hydro projects: A review.

    PubMed

    Bai, Ruiqiao; Liu, Xuehua; Liu, Xiaofei; Liu, Lanmei; Wang, Jianping; Liao, Sihui; Zhu, Annah; Li, Zhouyuan

    2017-11-01

    The hydropower capacity of China ranks first in the world and accounts for approximately 20% of the total energy production in the country. While hydropower has substantially contributed to meeting China's renewable energy targets and providing clean energy to rural areas, the development of hydropower in China has been met with significant controversy. Ecologically, hydro projects alter the landscape, with potential impacts to the country's aquatic biodiversity. Over the past four decades in China, various mainstream opinions and misunderstandings have been presented concerning how to alleviate the negative impacts of hydro projects on aquatic ecosystems. This article reviews research concerning potential mitigation measures to enhance aquatic biodiversity conservation in hydro projects in China. Based on the academic attention such research has attracted, three technical measures for aquatic biodiversity conservation are considered: (1) fish passages, (2) restocking efforts and (3) river and lake renovations. This article provides a historical comparison of these three practices in China to demonstrate the advantages and disadvantages of each method. The article also reviews the relevant legislation, regulations and technical guidelines concerning China's hydro projects dating back to 1979. The dynamics in research, publications, and patents concerning these three mitigation measures are summarized to demonstrate their technological developments in the context of legislative and policy advances. Data were gathered through the China Knowledge Resource Integrated Database and the State Intellectual Property Office of the People's Republic of China. Based on the analysis provided, the article recommends an expansion of China's environmental certification system for hydro projects, more robust regional legislation to bolster the national framework, the cooperation between upstream and downstream conservation mechanisms, and better monitoring to determine the efficacy

  12. Entangled judgments: expert preferences for adapting biodiversity conservation to climate change.

    PubMed

    Hagerman, Shannon M; Satterfield, Terre

    2013-11-15

    A major challenge facing conservation experts is how to adapt biodiversity planning and practice to the impacts of climate change. To date, most commonly advocated adaptation actions mirror conventional approaches (e.g. protected areas) despite decades of concern regarding their efficacy and widespread discussion of less conventional, interventionist actions. This survey of 160 experts (scientists and practitioners with specialized knowledge of the implications of climate change for biodiversity conservation) seeks to explain this deep incongruity. Specifically, we quantify current preferences for a diverse set of adaptation actions, and examine the choice logics that underpin them. We find near unanimous agreement in principle with the need for extensive active management and restoration interventions given climate change. However, when interventionist actions are provided as options alongside conventional actions, experts overwhelming prefer the latter. Four hypotheses, developed by linking the conservation adaptation literature with that of preference formation and risk and decision making, explore enduring preferences for conventional actions. They are (1) judged most ecologically effective, least risky and best understood; (2) linked with pro-ecological worldviews, marked by positive affective feelings, and an aversion to the hubris of managing nature; (3) a function of trust in biodiversity governance; and/or (4) driven by demographic factors such as gender. Overall, we find that experts prefer conventional over unconventional actions because they are viewed as relatively more effective and less risky from an ecological point of view, and because they are linked with positive affect ratings, and worldviews that are strongly pro-ecological. We discuss the roles of value-based and affective cues in shaping policy outcomes for adaptation specifically, and sustainable resource management more broadly. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

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

    PubMed

    Butchart, Stuart H M; Scharlemann, Jörn P W; Evans, Mike I; Quader, Suhel; Aricò, Salvatore; Arinaitwe, Julius; Balman, Mark; Bennun, Leon A; Bertzky, Bastian; Besançon, Charles; Boucher, Timothy M; Brooks, Thomas M; Burfield, Ian J; Burgess, Neil D; Chan, Simba; Clay, Rob P; Crosby, Mike J; Davidson, Nicholas C; De Silva, Naamal; Devenish, Christian; Dutson, Guy C L; Fernández, David F Día Z; Fishpool, Lincoln D C; Fitzgerald, Claire; Foster, Matt; Heath, Melanie F; Hockings, Marc; Hoffmann, Michael; Knox, David; Larsen, Frank W; Lamoreux, John F; Loucks, Colby; May, Ian; Millett, James; Molloy, Dominic; Morling, Paul; Parr, Mike; Ricketts, Taylor H; Seddon, Nathalie; Skolnik, Benjamin; Stuart, Simon N; Upgren, Amy; Woodley, Stephen

    2012-01-01

    Protected areas (PAs) are a cornerstone of conservation efforts and now cover nearly 13% of the world's land surface, with the world's governments committed to expand this to 17%. However, as biodiversity continues to decline, the effectiveness of PAs in reducing the extinction risk of species remains largely untested. We analyzed PA coverage and trends in species' extinction risk at globally significant sites for conserving birds (10,993 Important Bird Areas, IBAs) and highly threatened vertebrates and conifers (588 Alliance for Zero Extinction sites, AZEs) (referred to collectively hereafter as 'important sites'). Species occurring in important sites with greater PA coverage experienced smaller increases in extinction risk over recent decades: the increase was half as large for bird species with>50% of the IBAs at which they occur completely covered by PAs, and a third lower for birds, mammals and amphibians restricted to protected AZEs (compared with unprotected or partially protected sites). Globally, half of the important sites for biodiversity conservation remain unprotected (49% of IBAs, 51% of AZEs). While PA coverage of important sites has increased over time, the proportion of PA area covering important sites, as opposed to less important land, has declined (by 0.45-1.14% annually since 1950 for IBAs and 0.79-1.49% annually for AZEs). Thus, while appropriately located PAs may slow the rate at which species are driven towards extinction, recent PA network expansion has under-represented important sites. We conclude that better targeted expansion of PA networks would help to improve biodiversity trends.

  14. Protecting Important Sites for Biodiversity Contributes to Meeting Global Conservation Targets

    PubMed Central

    Butchart, Stuart H. M.; Scharlemann, Jörn P. W.; Evans, Mike I.; Quader, Suhel; Aricò, Salvatore; Arinaitwe, Julius; Balman, Mark; Bennun, Leon A.; Bertzky, Bastian; Besançon, Charles; Boucher, Timothy M.; Brooks, Thomas M.; Burfield, Ian J.; Burgess, Neil D.; Chan, Simba; Clay, Rob P.; Crosby, Mike J.; Davidson, Nicholas C.; De Silva, Naamal; Devenish, Christian; Dutson, Guy C. L.; Fernández, David F. Día z; Fishpool, Lincoln D. C.; Fitzgerald, Claire; Foster, Matt; Heath, Melanie F.; Hockings, Marc; Hoffmann, Michael; Knox, David; Larsen, Frank W.; Lamoreux, John F.; Loucks, Colby; May, Ian; Millett, James; Molloy, Dominic; Morling, Paul; Parr, Mike; Ricketts, Taylor H.; Seddon, Nathalie; Skolnik, Benjamin; Stuart, Simon N.; Upgren, Amy; Woodley, Stephen

    2012-01-01

    Protected areas (PAs) are a cornerstone of conservation efforts and now cover nearly 13% of the world's land surface, with the world's governments committed to expand this to 17%. However, as biodiversity continues to decline, the effectiveness of PAs in reducing the extinction risk of species remains largely untested. We analyzed PA coverage and trends in species' extinction risk at globally significant sites for conserving birds (10,993 Important Bird Areas, IBAs) and highly threatened vertebrates and conifers (588 Alliance for Zero Extinction sites, AZEs) (referred to collectively hereafter as ‘important sites’). Species occurring in important sites with greater PA coverage experienced smaller increases in extinction risk over recent decades: the increase was half as large for bird species with>50% of the IBAs at which they occur completely covered by PAs, and a third lower for birds, mammals and amphibians restricted to protected AZEs (compared with unprotected or partially protected sites). Globally, half of the important sites for biodiversity conservation remain unprotected (49% of IBAs, 51% of AZEs). While PA coverage of important sites has increased over time, the proportion of PA area covering important sites, as opposed to less important land, has declined (by 0.45–1.14% annually since 1950 for IBAs and 0.79–1.49% annually for AZEs). Thus, while appropriately located PAs may slow the rate at which species are driven towards extinction, recent PA network expansion has under-represented important sites. We conclude that better targeted expansion of PA networks would help to improve biodiversity trends. PMID:22457717

  15. Between-country collaboration and consideration of costs increase conservation planning efficiency in the Mediterranean Basin

    PubMed Central

    Kark, Salit; Levin, Noam; Grantham, Hedley S.; Possingham, Hugh P.

    2009-01-01

    The importance of global and regional coordination in conservation is growing, although currently, the majority of conservation programs are applied at national and subnational scales. Nevertheless, multinational programs incur transaction costs and resources beyond what is required in national programs. Given the need to maximize returns on investment within limited conservation budgets, it is crucial to quantify how much more biodiversity can be protected by coordinating multinational conservation efforts when resources are fungible. Previous studies that compared different scales of conservation decision-making mostly ignored spatial variability in biodiversity threats and the cost of actions. Here, we developed a simple integrating metric, taking into account both the cost of conservation and threats to biodiversity. We examined the Mediterranean Basin biodiversity hotspot, which encompasses over 20 countries. We discovered that for vertebrates to achieve similar conservation benefits, one would need substantially more money and area if each country were to act independently as compared to fully coordinated action across the Basin. A fully coordinated conservation plan is expected to save approximately US$67 billion, 45% of total cost, compared with the uncoordinated plan; and if implemented over a 10-year period, the plan would cost ≈0.1% of the gross national income of all European Union (EU) countries annually. The initiative declared in the recent Paris Summit for the Mediterranean provides a political basis for such complex coordination. Surprisingly, because many conservation priority areas selected are located in EU countries, a partly coordinated solution incorporating only EU-Mediterranean countries is almost as efficient as the fully coordinated scenario. PMID:19717457

  16. Between-country collaboration and consideration of costs increase conservation planning efficiency in the Mediterranean Basin.

    PubMed

    Kark, Salit; Levin, Noam; Grantham, Hedley S; Possingham, Hugh P

    2009-09-08

    The importance of global and regional coordination in conservation is growing, although currently, the majority of conservation programs are applied at national and subnational scales. Nevertheless, multinational programs incur transaction costs and resources beyond what is required in national programs. Given the need to maximize returns on investment within limited conservation budgets, it is crucial to quantify how much more biodiversity can be protected by coordinating multinational conservation efforts when resources are fungible. Previous studies that compared different scales of conservation decision-making mostly ignored spatial variability in biodiversity threats and the cost of actions. Here, we developed a simple integrating metric, taking into account both the cost of conservation and threats to biodiversity. We examined the Mediterranean Basin biodiversity hotspot, which encompasses over 20 countries. We discovered that for vertebrates to achieve similar conservation benefits, one would need substantially more money and area if each country were to act independently as compared to fully coordinated action across the Basin. A fully coordinated conservation plan is expected to save approximately US$67 billion, 45% of total cost, compared with the uncoordinated plan; and if implemented over a 10-year period, the plan would cost approximately 0.1% of the gross national income of all European Union (EU) countries annually. The initiative declared in the recent Paris Summit for the Mediterranean provides a political basis for such complex coordination. Surprisingly, because many conservation priority areas selected are located in EU countries, a partly coordinated solution incorporating only EU-Mediterranean countries is almost as efficient as the fully coordinated scenario.

  17. Social and ecological synergy: local rulemaking, forest livelihoods, and biodiversity conservation.

    PubMed

    Persha, Lauren; Agrawal, Arun; Chhatre, Ashwini

    2011-03-25

    Causal pathways to achieve social and ecological benefits from forests are unclear, because there are few systematic multicountry empirical analyses that identify important factors and their complex relationships with social and ecological outcomes. This study examines biodiversity conservation and forest-based livelihood outcomes using a data set on 84 sites from six countries in East Africa and South Asia. We find both positive and negative relationships, leading to joint wins, losses, and trade-offs depending on specific contextual factors; participation in forest governance institutions by local forest users is strongly associated with jointly positive outcomes for forests in our study.

  18. Biodiversity Conservation, Ecosystem Services and Livelihoods in Tropical Landscapes: Towards a Common Agenda

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schroth, Götz; McNeely, Jeffrey A.

    2011-08-01

    Trade-offs between ecosystem conservation and agricultural production can more easily be addressed by shifting the view from the plot scale to the scale of the landscape and integrating biodiversity friendly land use systems into development strategies. The provision of ecosystem services such as watershed protection and carbon sequestration by natural and complex agro-ecosystems can play an important role in making such integrated landscape approaches viable. This special issue brings together papers that were presented at a symposium on agroforestry and landscape scale conservation at the Second World Agroforestry Congress in Nairobi in August 2009. It is divided into two sections focusing on: (1) the biological mechanisms and implications of landscape scale conservation strategies as influenced by land use, especially agroforestry; and (2) the economic drivers and public policies that determine to a large extent the success of agroforestry-based landscape conservation strategies. The contributions provide evidence both for the potential and limitations of agroforestry in landscape scale conservation and development strategies and highlight the importance of economic incentives and policies to promote integrated landscape solutions. This introductory paper summarizes and discusses the contributions and concludes with policy recommendations and research needs.

  19. Biodiversity conservation, ecosystem services and livelihoods in tropical landscapes: towards a common agenda.

    PubMed

    Schroth, Götz; McNeely, Jeffrey A

    2011-08-01

    Trade-offs between ecosystem conservation and agricultural production can more easily be addressed by shifting the view from the plot scale to the scale of the landscape and integrating biodiversity friendly land use systems into development strategies. The provision of ecosystem services such as watershed protection and carbon sequestration by natural and complex agro-ecosystems can play an important role in making such integrated landscape approaches viable. This special issue brings together papers that were presented at a symposium on agroforestry and landscape scale conservation at the Second World Agroforestry Congress in Nairobi in August 2009. It is divided into two sections focusing on: (1) the biological mechanisms and implications of landscape scale conservation strategies as influenced by land use, especially agroforestry; and (2) the economic drivers and public policies that determine to a large extent the success of agroforestry-based landscape conservation strategies. The contributions provide evidence both for the potential and limitations of agroforestry in landscape scale conservation and development strategies and highlight the importance of economic incentives and policies to promote integrated landscape solutions. This introductory paper summarizes and discusses the contributions and concludes with policy recommendations and research needs.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-01-01

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

  2. Monitoring conservation effectiveness in a global biodiversity hotspot: the contribution of land cover change assessment.

    PubMed

    Joseph, Shijo; Blackburn, George Alan; Gharai, Biswadip; Sudhakar, S; Thomas, A P; Murthy, M S R

    2009-11-01

    Tropical forests, which play critical roles in global biogeochemical cycles, radiation budgets and biodiversity, have undergone rapid changes in land cover in the last few decades. This study examines the complex process of land cover change in the biodiversity hotspot of Western Ghats, India, specifically investigating the effects of conservation measures within the Indira Gandhi Wildlife Sanctuary. Current vegetation patterns were mapped using an IRS P6 LISS III image and this was used together with Landsat MSS data from 1973 to map land cover transitions. Two major and divergent trends were observed. A dominant degradational trend can be attributed to agricultural expansion and infrastructure development while a successional trend, resulting from protection of the area, showed the resilience of the system after prolonged disturbances. The sanctuary appears susceptible to continuing disturbances under the current management regime but at lower rates than in surrounding unprotected areas. The study demonstrates that remotely sensed land cover assessments can have important contributions to monitoring land management strategies, understanding processes underpinning land use changes and helping to inform future conservation strategies.

  3. Urban biodiversity, city-dwellers and conservation: how does an outdoor activity day affect the human-nature relationship?

    PubMed

    Shwartz, Assaf; Cosquer, Alix; Jaillon, Alexandre; Piron, Armony; Julliard, Romain; Raymond, Richard; Simon, Laurent; Prévot-Julliard, Anne-Caroline

    2012-01-01

    Urban conservation education programs aim to increase knowledge and awareness towards biodiversity and to change attitudes and behaviour towards the environment. However, to date, few urban conservation education studies have evaluated to what extent these programs have managed to achieve their goals. In this study, we experimentally explored the influence of an urban conservation activity day on individual knowledge, awareness and actions towards biodiversity, in both the short and longer term.We organised three activity days in Paris (France), during which people were invited to participate in urban conservation efforts. Both quantitative (questionnaire) and qualitative (interviews) methods were employed to investigate the influence of this short urban nature experience on the relationships that city-dwellers develop with nearby biodiversity. We found a strong positive correlation between the levels of participation and an immediate interest towards local urban biodiversity. In the longer term, however, although participants claimed to have gained more knowledge, local awareness and interest for species in their daily environment, they did not seem to extend this interest to participating in other related activities. These results highlight the complexity of validating the effectiveness of this type of education program for achieving conservation goals. Although such a short activity may only have a limited environmental impact, it nevertheless seems to increase people's knowledge, awareness, interest and concern. We therefore believe that when repeated locally, these short conservation education programs could enhance people's experience with nature in cities and achieve conservation goals more fully.

  4. Urban Biodiversity, City-Dwellers and Conservation: How Does an Outdoor Activity Day Affect the Human-Nature Relationship?

    PubMed Central

    Jaillon, Alexandre; Piron, Armony; Julliard, Romain; Raymond, Richard; Simon, Laurent; Prévot-Julliard, Anne-Caroline

    2012-01-01

    Urban conservation education programs aim to increase knowledge and awareness towards biodiversity and to change attitudes and behaviour towards the environment. However, to date, few urban conservation education studies have evaluated to what extent these programs have managed to achieve their goals. In this study, we experimentally explored the influence of an urban conservation activity day on individual knowledge, awareness and actions towards biodiversity, in both the short and longer term. We organised three activity days in Paris (France), during which people were invited to participate in urban conservation efforts. Both quantitative (questionnaire) and qualitative (interviews) methods were employed to investigate the influence of this short urban nature experience on the relationships that city-dwellers develop with nearby biodiversity. We found a strong positive correlation between the levels of participation and an immediate interest towards local urban biodiversity. In the longer term, however, although participants claimed to have gained more knowledge, local awareness and interest for species in their daily environment, they did not seem to extend this interest to participating in other related activities. These results highlight the complexity of validating the effectiveness of this type of education program for achieving conservation goals. Although such a short activity may only have a limited environmental impact, it nevertheless seems to increase people's knowledge, awareness, interest and concern. We therefore believe that when repeated locally, these short conservation education programs could enhance people's experience with nature in cities and achieve conservation goals more fully. PMID:22715403

  5. Contrasting effects of visiting urban green-space and the countryside on biodiversity knowledge and conservation support.

    PubMed

    Coldwell, Deborah F; Evans, Karl L

    2017-01-01

    Conservation policy frequently assumes that increasing people's exposure to green-space enhances their knowledge of the natural world and desire to protect it. Urban development is, however, considered to be driving declining connectedness to nature. Despite this the evidence base supporting the assumption that visiting green-spaces promotes biodiversity knowledge and conservation support, and the impacts of urbanization on these relationships, is surprisingly limited. Using data from door-to-door surveys of nearly 300 residents in three pairs of small and large urban areas in England we demonstrate that people who visit green-space more regularly have higher biodiversity knowledge and support for conservation (measured using scales of pro-environmental behavior). Crucially these relationships only arise when considering visits to the countryside and not the frequency of visits to urban green-space. These patterns are robust to a suite of confounding variables including nature orientated motivations for visiting green-space, socio-economic and demographic factors, garden-use and engagement with natural history programs. Despite this the correlations that we uncover cannot unambiguously demonstrate that visiting the countryside improves biodiversity knowledge and conservation support. We consider it likely, however, that two mechanisms operate through a positive feedback loop i.e. increased visits to green-space promote an interest in and knowledge of biodiversity and support for conservation, which in turn further increase the desire to visit green-space and experience nature. The intensity of urbanization around peoples' homes, but not city size, is negatively associated with their frequency of countryside visits and biodiversity knowledge. Designing less intensely urbanized cities with good access to the countryside, combined with conservation policies that promote access to the countryside thus seems likely to maximize urban residents' biodiversity knowledge and

  6. Contrasting effects of visiting urban green-space and the countryside on biodiversity knowledge and conservation support

    PubMed Central

    Coldwell, Deborah F.; Evans, Karl L.

    2017-01-01

    Conservation policy frequently assumes that increasing people’s exposure to green-space enhances their knowledge of the natural world and desire to protect it. Urban development is, however, considered to be driving declining connectedness to nature. Despite this the evidence base supporting the assumption that visiting green-spaces promotes biodiversity knowledge and conservation support, and the impacts of urbanization on these relationships, is surprisingly limited. Using data from door-to-door surveys of nearly 300 residents in three pairs of small and large urban areas in England we demonstrate that people who visit green-space more regularly have higher biodiversity knowledge and support for conservation (measured using scales of pro-environmental behavior). Crucially these relationships only arise when considering visits to the countryside and not the frequency of visits to urban green-space. These patterns are robust to a suite of confounding variables including nature orientated motivations for visiting green-space, socio-economic and demographic factors, garden-use and engagement with natural history programs. Despite this the correlations that we uncover cannot unambiguously demonstrate that visiting the countryside improves biodiversity knowledge and conservation support. We consider it likely, however, that two mechanisms operate through a positive feedback loop i.e. increased visits to green-space promote an interest in and knowledge of biodiversity and support for conservation, which in turn further increase the desire to visit green-space and experience nature. The intensity of urbanization around peoples’ homes, but not city size, is negatively associated with their frequency of countryside visits and biodiversity knowledge. Designing less intensely urbanized cities with good access to the countryside, combined with conservation policies that promote access to the countryside thus seems likely to maximize urban residents’ biodiversity

  7. [Priority areas for biodiversity conservation in Hainan Island: evaluation and systematic conservation planning].

    PubMed

    Zhang, Lu; Ouyang, Zhi-yun; Xiao, Yi; Wu, Wei-hua; Zheng, Hua; Jiang, Bo

    2011-08-01

    A total of 140 endangered species in Hainan Island were selected as indicator species, and their spatial distribution patterns were analyzed by using mechanism habitat model. Based on the iterative operation with systematic conservation planning tool MARXAN, the priority areas of these species were identified and evaluated. The priority areas had an area of 5383.7 km2, accounting for 15.6% of the total land area of the Island, and mainly distributed in some forest regions (Yinggeling, Jianfengling and Wuzhishan) and in northern part water source regions. In the priority areas, the conservation proportion of 11 1st grade indicator species habitats occupied at least 65% of all the habitats. Through the gap analysis of priority areas and current nature reserves, it was suggested that an expansion of Jianfengling, Yinggeling-Limushan, and Wuzhishan-Diaoluoshan nature reserves and the establishment of Baolonglinchang-Linbiling-Fuwanling protection system should be made, and the protection areas for water source conservation and endangered species should be established in the northern part of the Island.

  8. Effectiveness of marine protected areas in the Philippines for biodiversity conservation.

    PubMed

    Weeks, Rebecca; Russ, Garry R; Alcala, Angel C; White, Alan T

    2010-04-01

    Quantifying the extent to which existing reserves meet conservation objectives and identifying gaps in coverage are vital to developing systematic protected-area networks. Despite widespread recognition of the Philippines as a global priority for marine conservation, limited work has been undertaken to evaluate the conservation effectiveness of existing marine protected areas (MPAs). Targets for MPA coverage in the Philippines have been specified in the 1998 Fisheries Code legislation, which calls for 15% of coastal municipal waters (within 15 km of the coastline) to be protected within no-take MPAs, and the Philippine Marine Sanctuary Strategy (2004), which aims to protect 10% of coral reef area in no-take MPAs by 2020. We used a newly compiled database of nearly 1000 MPAs to measure progress toward these targets. We evaluated conservation effectiveness of MPAs in two ways. First, we determined the degree to which marine bioregions and conservation priority areas are represented within existing MPAs. Second, we assessed the size and spacing patterns of reserves in terms of best-practice recommendations. We found that the current extent and distribution of MPAs does not adequately represent biodiversity. At present just 0.5% of municipal waters and 2.7-3.4% of coral reef area in the Philippines are protected in no-take MPAs. Moreover, 85% of no-take area is in just two sites; 90% of MPAs are <1 km(2). Nevertheless, distances between existing MPAs should ensure larval connectivity between them, providing opportunities to develop regional-scale MPA networks. Despite the considerable success of community-based approaches to MPA implementation in the Philippines, this strategy will not be sufficient to meet conservation targets, even under a best-case scenario for future MPA establishment. We recommend that implementation of community-based MPAs be supplemented by designation of additional large no-take areas specifically located to address conservation targets.

  9. Stakeholder engagement in scenario development process - bioenergy production and biodiversity conservation in eastern Finland.

    PubMed

    Haatanen, Anniina; den Herder, Michael; Leskinen, Pekka; Lindner, Marcus; Kurttila, Mikko; Salminen, Olli

    2014-03-15

    In this study participatory approaches were used to develop alternative forest resource management scenarios with particular respect to the effects on increased use of forest bioenergy and its effect on biodiversity in Eastern Finland. As technical planning tools, we utilized a forest management planning system (MELA) and the Tool for Sustainability Impact Assessment (ToSIA) to visualize the impacts of the scenarios. We organized a stakeholder workshop where group discussions were used as a participatory method to get the stakeholder preferences and insights concerning forest resource use in the year 2030. Feedback from the workshop was then complemented with a questionnaire. Based on the results of the workshop and a questionnaire we developed three alternative forest resource scenarios: (1) bioenergy 2030 - in which energy production is more centralized and efficient; (2) biodiversity 2030 - in which harvesting methods are more nature friendly and protected forests make up 10% of the total forest area; and (3) mixed bioenergy + biodiversity 2030 scenario - in which wood production, recreation and nature protection are assigned to the most suitable areas. The study showed that stakeholder engagement combined with the MELA and ToSIA tools can be a useful approach in scenario development. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  10. Integrating habitat status, human population pressure, and protection status into biodiversity conservation priority setting

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Shi, H.; Singh, A.; Kant, S.; Zhu, Z.; Waller, E.

    2005-01-01

    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.

  11. Efficient Conservative Reformulation Schemes for Lithium Intercalation

    SciTech Connect

    Urisanga, PC; Rife, D; De, S; Subramanian, VR

    2015-02-18

    Porous electrode theory coupled with transport and reaction mechanisms is a widely used technique to model Li-ion batteries employing an appropriate discretization or approximation for solid phase diffusion with electrode particles. One of the major difficulties in simulating Li-ion battery models is the need to account for solid phase diffusion in a second radial dimension r, which increases the computation time/cost to a great extent. Various methods that reduce the computational cost have been introduced to treat this phenomenon, but most of them do not guarantee mass conservation. The aim of this paper is to introduce an inherently mass conserving yet computationally efficient method for solid phase diffusion based on Lobatto III A quadrature. This paper also presents coupling of the new solid phase reformulation scheme with a macro-homogeneous porous electrode theory based pseudo 20 model for Li-ion battery. (C) The Author(s) 2015. Published by ECS. All rights reserved.

  12. A win-win strategy for ecological restoration and biodiversity conservation in Southern China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cao, Shixiong; Shang, Di; Yue, Hui; Ma, Hua

    2017-04-01

    Environmental degradation and poverty are linked, and must be tackled together. Doing so requires a win-win strategy that both restores the environment and ensures a sustainable livelihood for those who are affected by the restoration project. To understand the importance of combining ecological restoration and biodiversity conservation objectives with a consideration of the livelihoods of residents, we examined a successful project in ecologically fragile Changting County, Fujian Province, China. We attribute the project’s success to the development of a win-win strategy that sustainably improved resident livelihoods, in contrast with traditional strategies that focus exclusively on establishing forests and grassland. To develop this win-win strategy, we performed long-term monitoring (since 1984) under a program designed to permit ecological restoration and biodiversity conservation in the county. For our analysis, we chose a range of natural and socioeconomic indicators that could affect the ecological restoration; we then used a contribution model to identify the relative influence of each social, economic, or environmental factor on the dependent variables (vegetation cover, soil erosion, number of plant species). The results showed that by improving livelihoods and mitigating poverty in the long term, the project also reduced damage to the environment by local residents. Our calculations suggest that accounting for socioeconomic factors played a key role in the successful ecological conservation. This win-win path to escaping the poverty trap during ecological restoration provides an example that can be followed by restoration projects elsewhere in the world with suitable modifications to account for unique local conditions.

  13. Using the Global Environment Facility for developing Integrated Conservation and Development (ICAD) models -- Papua New Guinea`s Biodiversity Conservation Management Programme

    SciTech Connect

    Kula, G.; Jefferies, B.

    1995-03-01

    The unprecedented level of support that has been pledged to strengthen Government of Papua New Guinea (GoPNG) biodiversity conservation initiatives has re-identified an important fact that technical and infrastructure support must be complemented by programs that provide realistic opportunities for developing national capacity. Indications are that the next five years will present a range of challenging opportunities for the department to move from the intensive period of planning, which has been the focus of attention during the first phase of the National Forestry and Conservation Action Programme (NFCAP), into a sustained period of policy and project application. This paper examines processes under which strengthening programs contribute to national development objectives and complement accomplishment of the Department of Environment and Conservation Strategic Plan. An overview of the Global Environment Facility-Integrated Conservation and Development (ICAD) Project and coordination effort that are being made for biodiversity conservation projects in Papua New Guinea, are addressed.

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

    PubMed

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

    2012-03-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-01-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

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

  17. Biodiversity conservation across taxa and landscapes requires many small as well as single large habitat fragments.

    PubMed

    Rösch, Verena; Tscharntke, Teja; Scherber, Christoph; Batáry, Péter

    2015-09-01

    Agricultural intensification has been shown to reduce biodiversity through processes such as habitat degradation and fragmentation. We tested whether several small or single large habitat fragments (re-visiting the 'single large or several small' debate) support more species across a wide range of taxonomic groups (plants, leafhoppers, true bugs, snails). Our study comprised 14 small (<1 ha) and 14 large (1.5-8 ha) fragments of calcareous grassland in Central Germany along orthogonal gradients of landscape complexity and habitat connectivity. Each taxon was sampled on six plots per fragment. Across taxa, species richness did not differ between large and small fragments, whereas species-area accumulation curves showed that both overall and specialist species richness was much higher on several small fragments of calcareous grassland than on few large fragments. On average, 85% of the overall species richness was recorded on all small fragments taken together (4.6 ha), whereas the two largest ones (15.1 ha) only accounted for 37% of the species. This could be due to the greater geographic extent covered by many small fragments. However, community composition differed strongly between large and small fragments, and some of the rarest specialist species appeared to be confined to large fragments. The surrounding landscape did not show any consistent effects on species richness and community composition. Our results show that both single large and many small fragments are needed to promote landscape-wide biodiversity across taxa. We therefore question the focus on large fragments only and call for a new diversified habitat fragmentation strategy for biodiversity conservation.

  18. Wartime scars or reservoirs of biodiversity? The value of bomb crater ponds in aquatic conservation

    PubMed Central

    Vad, Csaba F.; Péntek, Attila L.; Cozma, Nastasia J.; Földi, Angéla; Tóth, Adrienn; Tóth, Bence; Böde, NóraA.; Móra, Arnold; Ptacnik, Robert; Ács, Éva; Zsuga, Katalin; Horváth, Zsófia

    2017-01-01

    Considering the ongoing loss of aquatic habitats, anthropogenic ponds are gaining importance as substitute habitats. It is therefore important to assess their functioning in comparison to their natural precursors. Here we assess the biodiversity value of sodic bomb crater ponds by comparing their gamma diversity to that of natural reference habitats, astatic soda pans, and assess their importance on the landscape level by studying alpha and beta diversity. We studied aquatic organisms ranging from algae to vertebrates in a dense cluster of 54 sodic bomb crater ponds in Central Europe. Despite the overall small area of the pond cluster, gamma diversity was comparable to that found in surveys of natural habitats that encompassed much wider spatial and temporal scales. We also found a considerable number of species shared with reference habitats, indicating that these anthropogenic habitats function as important refuge sites for several species that are associated with the endangered soda pans. Moreover, we found a number of regionally or worldwide rare species. Among the components of beta diversity, species replacement dominated community assembly. Individual ponds contributed similarly to beta diversity in terms of replacement, being equally important for maintaining high gamma diversity and emphasising the role of the pond network rather than individual ponds. This pattern was seen in all studied groups. Bomb crater ponds therefore acted as important contributors to aquatic biodiversity. Considering the tremendous losses of ponds throughout Europe, anthropogenic ponds should be taken into consideration in nature conservation, especially when occurring in pond networks. PMID:28529346

  19. Wartime scars or reservoirs of biodiversity? The value of bomb crater ponds in aquatic conservation.

    PubMed

    Vad, Csaba F; Péntek, Attila L; Cozma, Nastasia J; Földi, Angéla; Tóth, Adrienn; Tóth, Bence; Böde, NóraA; Móra, Arnold; Ptacnik, Robert; Ács, Éva; Zsuga, Katalin; Horváth, Zsófia

    2017-05-01

    Considering the ongoing loss of aquatic habitats, anthropogenic ponds are gaining importance as substitute habitats. It is therefore important to assess their functioning in comparison to their natural precursors. Here we assess the biodiversity value of sodic bomb crater ponds by comparing their gamma diversity to that of natural reference habitats, astatic soda pans, and assess their importance on the landscape level by studying alpha and beta diversity. We studied aquatic organisms ranging from algae to vertebrates in a dense cluster of 54 sodic bomb crater ponds in Central Europe. Despite the overall small area of the pond cluster, gamma diversity was comparable to that found in surveys of natural habitats that encompassed much wider spatial and temporal scales. We also found a considerable number of species shared with reference habitats, indicating that these anthropogenic habitats function as important refuge sites for several species that are associated with the endangered soda pans. Moreover, we found a number of regionally or worldwide rare species. Among the components of beta diversity, species replacement dominated community assembly. Individual ponds contributed similarly to beta diversity in terms of replacement, being equally important for maintaining high gamma diversity and emphasising the role of the pond network rather than individual ponds. This pattern was seen in all studied groups. Bomb crater ponds therefore acted as important contributors to aquatic biodiversity. Considering the tremendous losses of ponds throughout Europe, anthropogenic ponds should be taken into consideration in nature conservation, especially when occurring in pond networks.

  20. Conservation in a cup of water: estimating biodiversity and population abundance from environmental DNA.

    PubMed

    Lodge, David M; Turner, Cameron R; Jerde, Christopher L; Barnes, Matthew A; Chadderton, Lindsay; Egan, Scott P; Feder, Jeffrey L; Mahon, Andrew R; Pfrender, Michael E

    2012-06-01

    Three mantras often guide species and ecosystem management: (i) for preventing invasions by harmful species, 'early detection and rapid response'; (ii) for conserving imperilled native species, 'protection of biodiversity hotspots'; and (iii) for assessing biosecurity risk, 'an ounce of prevention equals a pound of cure.' However, these and other management goals are elusive when traditional sampling tools (e.g. netting, traps, electrofishing, visual surveys) have poor detection limits, are too slow or are not feasible. One visionary solution is to use an organism's DNA in the environment (eDNA), rather than the organism itself, as the target of detection. In this issue of Molecular Ecology, Thomsen et al. (2012) provide new evidence demonstrating the feasibility of this approach, showing that eDNA is an accurate indicator of the presence of an impressively diverse set of six aquatic or amphibious taxa including invertebrates, amphibians, a fish and a mammal in a wide range of freshwater habitats. They are also the first to demonstrate that the abundance of eDNA, as measured by qPCR, correlates positively with population abundance estimated with traditional tools. Finally, Thomsen et al. (2012) demonstrate that next-generation sequencing of eDNA can quantify species richness. Overall, Thomsen et al. (2012) provide a revolutionary roadmap for using eDNA for detection of species, estimates of relative abundance and quantification of biodiversity. © 2012 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

  1. Identifying local-scale wilderness for on-ground conservation actions within a global biodiversity hotspot

    PubMed Central

    Lin, Shiwei; Wu, Ruidong; Hua, Chaolang; Ma, Jianzhong; Wang, Wenli; Yang, Feiling; Wang, Junjun

    2016-01-01

    Protecting wilderness areas (WAs) is a crucial proactive approach to sustain biodiversity. However, studies identifying local-scale WAs for on-ground conservation efforts are still very limited. This paper investigated the spatial patterns of wilderness in a global biodiversity hotspot – Three Parallel Rivers Region (TPRR) in southwest China. Wilderness was classified into levels 1 to 10 based on a cluster analysis of five indicators, namely human population density, naturalness, fragmentation, remoteness, and ruggedness. Only patches characterized by wilderness level 1 and ≥1.0 km2 were considered WAs. The wilderness levels in the northwest were significantly higher than those in the southeast, and clearly increased with the increase in elevation. The WAs covered approximately 25% of TPRR’s land, 89.3% of which was located in the >3,000 m elevation zones. WAs consisted of 20 vegetation types, among which temperate conifer forest, cold temperate shrub and alpine ecosystems covered 79.4% of WAs’ total area. Most WAs were still not protected yet by existing reserves. Topography and human activities are the primary influencing factors on the spatial patterns of wilderness. We suggest establishing strictly protected reserves for most large WAs, while some sustainable management approaches might be more optimal solutions for many highly fragmented small WAs. PMID:27181186

  2. Identifying local-scale wilderness for on-ground conservation actions within a global biodiversity hotspot

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lin, Shiwei; Wu, Ruidong; Hua, Chaolang; Ma, Jianzhong; Wang, Wenli; Yang, Feiling; Wang, Junjun

    2016-05-01

    Protecting wilderness areas (WAs) is a crucial proactive approach to sustain biodiversity. However, studies identifying local-scale WAs for on-ground conservation efforts are still very limited. This paper investigated the spatial patterns of wilderness in a global biodiversity hotspot - Three Parallel Rivers Region (TPRR) in southwest China. Wilderness was classified into levels 1 to 10 based on a cluster analysis of five indicators, namely human population density, naturalness, fragmentation, remoteness, and ruggedness. Only patches characterized by wilderness level 1 and ≥1.0 km2 were considered WAs. The wilderness levels in the northwest were significantly higher than those in the southeast, and clearly increased with the increase in elevation. The WAs covered approximately 25% of TPRR’s land, 89.3% of which was located in the >3,000 m elevation zones. WAs consisted of 20 vegetation types, among which temperate conifer forest, cold temperate shrub and alpine ecosystems covered 79.4% of WAs’ total area. Most WAs were still not protected yet by existing reserves. Topography and human activities are the primary influencing factors on the spatial patterns of wilderness. We suggest establishing strictly protected reserves for most large WAs, while some sustainable management approaches might be more optimal solutions for many highly fragmented small WAs.

  3. Seed plant phylogenetic diversity and species richness in conservation planning within a global biodiversity hotspot in eastern Asia.

    PubMed

    Li, Rong; Kraft, Nathan J B; Yu, Haiying; Li, Heng

    2015-12-01

    One of the main goals of conservation biology is to understand the factors shaping variation in biodiversity across the planet. This understanding is critical for conservation planners to be able to develop effective conservation strategies. Although many studies have focused on species richness and the protection of rare and endemic species, less attention has been paid to the protection of the phylogenetic dimension of biodiversity. We explored how phylogenetic diversity, species richness, and phylogenetic community structure vary in seed plant communities along an elevational gradient in a relatively understudied high mountain region, the Dulong Valley, in southeastern Tibet, China. As expected, phylogenetic diversity was well correlated with species richness among the elevational bands and among communities. At the community level, evergreen broad-leaved forests had the highest levels of species richness and phylogenetic diversity. Using null model analyses, we found evidence of nonrandom phylogenetic structure across the region. Evergreen broad-leaved forests were phylogenetically overdispersed, whereas other vegetation types tended to be phylogenetically clustered. We suggest that communities with high species richness or overdispersed phylogenetic structure should be a focus for biodiversity conservation within the Dulong Valley because these areas may help maximize the potential of this flora to respond to future global change. In biodiversity hotspots worldwide, we suggest that the phylogenetic structure of a community may serve as a useful measure of phylogenetic diversity in the context of conservation planning.

  4. Molecular Biogeography: Towards an Integrated Framework for Conserving Pan-African Biodiversity

    PubMed Central

    Moodley, Yoshan; Bruford, Michael W.

    2007-01-01

    Background Biogeographic models partition ecologically similar species assemblages into discrete ecoregions. However, the history, relationship and interactions between these regions and their assemblages have rarely been explored. Methodology/Principal Findings Here we develop a taxon-based approach that explicitly utilises molecular information to compare ecoregion history and status, which we exemplify using a continentally distributed mammalian species: the African bushbuck (Tragelaphus scriptus). We reveal unprecedented levels of genetic diversity and structure in this species and show that ecoregion biogeographic history better explains the distribution of molecular variation than phenotypic similarity or geography. We extend these data to explore ecoregion connectivity, identify core habitats and infer ecological affinities from them. Conclusions/Significance This analysis defines 28 key biogeographic regions for sub-Saharan Africa, and provides a valuable framework for the incorporation of genetic and biogeographic information into a more widely applicable model for the conservation of continental biodiversity. PMID:17520013

  5. Illicit crops and armed conflict as constraints on biodiversity conservation in the Andes region.

    PubMed

    Fjeldså, Jon; Alvarez, María D; Lazcano, Juan Mario; León, Blanca

    2005-05-01

    Coca, once grown for local consumption in the Andes, is now produced for external markets, often in areas with armed conflict. Internationally financed eradication campaigns force traffickers and growers to constantly relocate, making drug-related activities a principal cause of forest loss. The impact on biodiversity is known only in general terms, and this article presents the first regional analysis to identify areas of special concern, using bird data as proxy. The aim of conserving all species may be significantly constrained in the Santa Marta and Perijá mountains, Darién, some parts of the Central Andes in Colombia, and between the middle Marañón and middle Huallaga valleys in Peru. Solutions to the problem must address the root causes: international drug markets, long-lasting armed conflict, and lack of alternative income for the rural poor.

  6. Conservation Priorities in a Biodiversity Hotspot: Analysis of Narrow Endemic Plant Species in New Caledonia

    PubMed Central

    Wulff, Adrien S.; Hollingsworth, Peter M.; Ahrends, Antje; Jaffré, Tanguy; Veillon, Jean-Marie; L’Huillier, Laurent; Fogliani, Bruno

    2013-01-01

    New Caledonia is a global biodiversity hotspot facing extreme environmental degradation. Given the urgent need for conservation prioritisation, we have made a first-pass quantitative assessment of the distribution of Narrow Endemic Species (NES) in the flora to identify species and sites that are potentially important for conservation action. We assessed the distributional status of all angiosperm and gymnosperm species using data from taxonomic descriptions and herbarium samples. We characterised species as being NES if they occurred in 3 or fewer locations. In total, 635 of the 2930 assessed species were classed as NES, of which only 150 have been subjected to the IUCN conservation assessment. As the distributional patterns of un-assessed species from one or two locations correspond well with assessed species which have been classified as Critically Endangered or Endangered respectively, we suggest that our distributional data can be used to prioritise species for IUCN assessment. We also used the distributional data to produce a map of “Hotspots of Plant Narrow Endemism” (HPNE). Combined, we used these data to evaluate the coincidence of NES with mining activities (a major source of threat on New Caledonia) and also areas of conservation protection. This is to identify species and locations in most urgent need of further conservation assessment and subsequent action. Finally, we grouped the NES based on the environments they occurred in and modelled the habitat distribution of these groups with a Maximum Entropy Species Distribution Model (MaxEnt). The NES were separable into three different groups based primarily on geological differences. The distribution of the habitat types for each group coincide partially with the HPNE described above and also indicates some areas which have high habitat suitability but few recorded NES. Some of these areas may represent under-sampled hotspots of narrow endemism and are priorities for further field work. PMID:24058470

  7. 77 FR 54839 - Energy Efficiency and Conservation Loan Program

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2012-09-06

    ... Energy Efficiency and Conservation Loan Program AGENCY: Rural Utilities Service, USDA. ACTION: Notice of... assistance in support of energy efficiency programs (EE Programs) sponsored and implemented by...

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

    PubMed

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

    2014-04-01

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

  9. Protected areas and agricultural expansion: Biodiversity conservation versus economic growth in the Southeast of Brazil.

    PubMed

    Moraes, Mayra Cristina Prado de; Mello, Kaline de; Toppa, Rogério Hartung

    2017-03-01

    The conversion of natural ecosystems to agricultural land and urban areas plays a threat to the protected areas and the natural ecosystems conservation. The aim of this paper is to provide an analysis of the agricultural expansion and its impact on the landscape spatial and temporal patterns in a buffer zone of a protected area located in the transition zone between the Atlantic Forest and Cerrado, in the State of São Paulo, Brazil. The land use and land cover were mapped between 1971 and 2008 and landscape metrics were calculated to provide a spatiotemporal analysis of the forest structure and the expansion of the croplands. The results showed that the landscape patterns were affected by the economic cycles. The predominant crop surrounding the protected area is sugar cane, which increased by 39% during this period, followed by citrus. This landscape change is connected to the Brazilian oil crisis in 1973. The rapid expansion of sugar cane was largely driven by Brazil's biofuel program, the "Proálcool" (pro-alcohol), a project in 1975 that mixed ethanol with gas for automotive fuel. The forest loss occurred mainly between 1971 and 1988, decreasing the forest cover from 17% in 1971 to 12.7% in 2008. Most of the forest patches are smaller than 50 ha and has low connectivity. Throughout the years, the fragments in the buffer zone have become smaller and with an elongated shape, and the park has become isolated. This forest fragmentation process and the predominance of monoculture lands in the buffer zone threaten the protected areas, and can represent a barrier for these areas to provide the effective biodiversity conservation. The measures proposed are necessary to ensure the capability of this ecosystem to sustain its original biodiversity. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  10. Assessing conservation values: biodiversity and endemicity in tropical land use systems.

    PubMed

    Waltert, Matthias; Bobo, Kadiri Serge; Kaupa, Stefanie; Montoya, Marcela Leija; Nsanyi, Moses Sainge; Fermon, Heleen

    2011-01-27

    Despite an increasing amount of data on the effects of tropical land use on continental forest fauna and flora, it is debatable whether the choice of the indicator variables allows for a proper evaluation of the role of modified habitats in mitigating the global biodiversity crisis. While many single-taxon studies have highlighted that species with narrow geographic ranges especially suffer from habitat modification, there is no multi-taxa study available which consistently focuses on geographic range composition of the studied indicator groups. We compiled geographic range data for 180 bird, 119 butterfly, 204 tree and 219 understorey plant species sampled along a gradient of habitat modification ranging from near-primary forest through young secondary forest and agroforestry systems to annual crops in the southwestern lowlands of Cameroon. We found very similar patterns of declining species richness with increasing habitat modification between taxon-specific groups of similar geographic range categories. At the 8 km(2) spatial level, estimated richness of endemic species declined in all groups by 21% (birds) to 91% (trees) from forests to annual crops, while estimated richness of widespread species increased by +101% (trees) to +275% (understorey plants), or remained stable (-2%, butterflies). Even traditional agroforestry systems lost estimated endemic species richness by -18% (birds) to -90% (understorey plants). Endemic species richness of one taxon explained between 37% and 57% of others (positive correlations) and taxon-specific richness in widespread species explained up to 76% of variation in richness of endemic species (negative correlations). The key implication of this study is that the range size aspect is fundamental in assessments of conservation value via species inventory data from modified habitats. The study also suggests that even ecologically friendly agricultural matrices may be of much lower value for tropical conservation than indicated by

  11. Assessing Conservation Values: Biodiversity and Endemicity in Tropical Land Use Systems

    PubMed Central

    Waltert, Matthias; Bobo, Kadiri Serge; Kaupa, Stefanie; Montoya, Marcela Leija; Nsanyi, Moses Sainge; Fermon, Heleen

    2011-01-01

    Despite an increasing amount of data on the effects of tropical land use on continental forest fauna and flora, it is debatable whether the choice of the indicator variables allows for a proper evaluation of the role of modified habitats in mitigating the global biodiversity crisis. While many single-taxon studies have highlighted that species with narrow geographic ranges especially suffer from habitat modification, there is no multi-taxa study available which consistently focuses on geographic range composition of the studied indicator groups. We compiled geographic range data for 180 bird, 119 butterfly, 204 tree and 219 understorey plant species sampled along a gradient of habitat modification ranging from near-primary forest through young secondary forest and agroforestry systems to annual crops in the southwestern lowlands of Cameroon. We found very similar patterns of declining species richness with increasing habitat modification between taxon-specific groups of similar geographic range categories. At the 8 km2 spatial level, estimated richness of endemic species declined in all groups by 21% (birds) to 91% (trees) from forests to annual crops, while estimated richness of widespread species increased by +101% (trees) to +275% (understorey plants), or remained stable (- 2%, butterflies). Even traditional agroforestry systems lost estimated endemic species richness by - 18% (birds) to - 90% (understorey plants). Endemic species richness of one taxon explained between 37% and 57% of others (positive correlations) and taxon-specific richness in widespread species explained up to 76% of variation in richness of endemic species (negative correlations). The key implication of this study is that the range size aspect is fundamental in assessments of conservation value via species inventory data from modified habitats. The study also suggests that even ecologically friendly agricultural matrices may be of much lower value for tropical conservation than indicated by

  12. Biodiversity conservation in Swedish forests: ways forward for a 30-year-old multi-scaled approach.

    PubMed

    Gustafsson, Lena; Perhans, Karin

    2010-12-01

    A multi-scaled model for biodiversity conservation in forests was introduced in Sweden 30 years ago, which makes it a pioneer example of an integrated ecosystem approach. Trees are set aside for biodiversity purposes at multiple scale levels varying from individual trees to areas of thousands of hectares, with landowner responsibility at the lowest level and with increasing state involvement at higher levels. Ecological theory supports the multi-scaled approach, and retention efforts at every harvest occasion stimulate landowners' interest in conservation. We argue that the model has large advantages but that in a future with intensified forestry and global warming, development based on more progressive thinking is necessary to maintain and increase biodiversity. Suggestions for the future include joint planning for several forest owners, consideration of cost-effectiveness, accepting opportunistic work models, adjusting retention levels to stand and landscape composition, introduction of temporary reserves, creation of "receiver habitats" for species escaping climate change, and protection of young forests.

  13. An international borderland of concern: Conservation of biodiversity in the Lower Rio Grande Valley

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Leslie,, David M.

    2016-07-20

    The Lower Rio Grande Valley (LRGV) of southern Texas is located on the United States-Mexico borderland and represents a 240-kilometer (150-mile) linear stretch that ends at the Gulf of Mexico. The LRGV represents a unique transition between temperate and tropical conditions and, as such, sustains an exceptionally high diversity of plants and animals—some of them found in few, or no other, places in the United States. Examples include Leopardus pardalis albescens (northern ocelot) and Falco femoralis septentrionalis (northern aplomado falcon)—both endangered in the United States and emblematic of the LRGV. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) manages three national wildlife refuges (Santa Ana, Lower Rio Grande Valley, and Laguna Atascosa) that together make up the South Texas Refuge Complex, which actively conserves biodiversity in about 76,006 hectares (187,815.5 acres) of native riparian and upland habitats in the LRGV. These diminished habitats harbor many rare, threatened, and endangered species. This report updates the widely used 1988 USFWS biological report titled “Tamaulipan Brushland of the Lower Rio Grande Valley of South Texas: Description, Human Impacts, and Management Options” by synthesizing nearly 400 peer-reviewed scientific publications that have resulted from biological and sociological research conducted specifically in the four Texas counties of the LRGV in the past nearly 30 years. This report has three goals: (1) synthesize scientific insights gained since 1988 related to the biology and management of the LRGV and its unique biota, focusing on flora and fauna of greatest conservation concern; (2) update ongoing challenges facing Federal and State agencies and organizations that focus on conservation or key natural resources in the LRGV; and (3) redefine conservation opportunities and land-acquisition strategies that are feasible and appropriate today, given the many new and expanding constraints that challenge conservation

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2013-01-01

    Background Conservation of the unique biodiversity of mountain ecosystems needs trans-disciplinary approaches to succeed in a crowded colloquial world. Geographers, conservationists, ecologists and social scientists have, in the past, had the same conservation goals but have tended to work independently. In this review, the need to integrate different conservation criteria and methodologies is discussed. New criteria are offered for prioritizing species and habitats for conservation in montane ecosystems that combine both ecological and social data. Scope Ecological attributes of plant species, analysed through robust community statistical packages, provide unbiased classifications of species assemblages and environmental biodiversity gradients and yield importance value indices (IVIs). Surveys of local communities’ utilization of the vegetation provides use values (UVs). This review suggests a new means of assessing anthropogenic pressure on plant biodiversity at both species and community levels by integrating IVI and UV data sets in a combined analysis. Conclusions Mountain ecosystems are hot spots for plant conservation efforts because they hold a high overall plant diversity as communities replace each other along altitudinal and climatic gradients, including a high proportion of endemic species. This review contributes an enhanced understanding of (1) plant diversity in mountain ecosystems with special reference to the western Himalayas; (2) ethnobotanical and ecosystem service values of mountain vegetation within the context of anthropogenic impacts; and (3) local and regional plant conservation strategies and priorities. PMID:23825353

  15. Biodiversity Mapping via Natura 2000 Conservation Status and Ebv Assessment Using Airborne Laser Scanning in Alkali Grasslands

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zlinszky, A.; Deák, B.; Kania, A.; Schroiff, A.; Pfeifer, N.

    2016-06-01

    Biodiversity is an ecological concept, which essentially involves a complex sum of several indicators. One widely accepted such set of indicators is prescribed for habitat conservation status assessment within Natura 2000, a continental-scale conservation programme of the European Union. Essential Biodiversity Variables are a set of indicators designed to be relevant for biodiversity and suitable for global-scale operational monitoring. Here we revisit a study of Natura 2000 conservation status mapping via airbone LIDAR that develops individual remote sensing-derived proxies for every parameter required by the Natura 2000 manual, from the perspective of developing regional-scale Essential Biodiversity Variables. Based on leaf-on and leaf-off point clouds (10 pt/m2) collected in an alkali grassland area, a set of data products were calculated at 0.5 ×0.5 m resolution. These represent various aspects of radiometric and geometric texture. A Random Forest machine learning classifier was developed to create fuzzy vegetation maps of classes of interest based on these data products. In the next step, either classification results or LIDAR data products were selected as proxies for individual Natura 2000 conservation status variables, and fine-tuned based on field references. These proxies showed adequate performance and were summarized to deliver Natura 2000 conservation status with 80% overall accuracy compared to field references. This study draws attention to the potential of LIDAR for regional-scale Essential Biodiversity variables, and also holds implications for global-scale mapping. These are (i) the use of sensor data products together with habitat-level classification, (ii) the utility of seasonal data, including for non-seasonal variables such as grassland canopy structure, and (iii) the potential of fuzzy mapping-derived class probabilities as proxies for species presence and absence.

  16. Biodiversity Conservation through Environmental Education for Sustainable Development--A Case Study from Puducherry, India

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ramadoss, Alexandar; Poyya Moli, Gopalsamy

    2011-01-01

    Promoting students commitment to protect local biodiversity is an important goal of education for sustainable development in India and elsewhere. The main focus of the biodiversity education was to create knowledge, interest and necessary skills to solve various biodiversity problems with reference to the local context. In order to develop the…

  17. Reconciling Biodiversity Conservation and Timber Production in Mixed Uneven-Aged Mountain Forests: Identification of Ecological Intensification Pathways.

    PubMed

    Lafond, Valentine; Cordonnier, Thomas; Courbaud, Benoît

    2015-11-01

    Mixed uneven-aged forests are considered favorable to the provision of multiple ecosystem services and to the conciliation of timber production and biodiversity conservation. However, some forest managers now plan to increase the intensity of thinning and harvesting operations in these forests. Retention measures or gap creation are considered to compensate potential negative impacts on biodiversity. Our objectives were to assess the effect of these management practices on timber production and biodiversity conservation and identify potential compensating effects between these practices, using the concept of ecological intensification as a framework. We performed a simulation study coupling Samsara2, a simulation model designed for spruce-fir uneven-aged mountain forests, an uneven-aged silviculture algorithm, and biodiversity models. We analyzed the effect of parameters related to uneven-aged management practices on timber production, biodiversity, and sustainability indicators. Our study confirmed that the indicators responded differently to management practices, leading to trade-offs situations. Increasing management intensity had negative impacts on several biodiversity indicators, which could be partly compensated by the positive effect of retention measures targeting large trees, non-dominant species, and deadwood. The impact of gap creation was more mitigated, with a positive effect on the diversity of tree sizes and deadwood but a negative impact on the spruce-fir mixing balance and on the diversity of the understory layer. Through the analysis of compensating effects, we finally revealed the existence of possible ecological intensification pathways, i.e., the possibility to increase management intensity while maintaining biodiversity through the promotion of nature-based management principles (gap creation and retention measures).

  18. Reconciling Biodiversity Conservation and Timber Production in Mixed Uneven-Aged Mountain Forests: Identification of Ecological Intensification Pathways

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lafond, Valentine; Cordonnier, Thomas; Courbaud, Benoît

    2015-11-01

    Mixed uneven-aged forests are considered favorable to the provision of multiple ecosystem services and to the conciliation of timber production and biodiversity conservation. However, some forest managers now plan to increase the intensity of thinning and harvesting operations in these forests. Retention measures or gap creation are considered to compensate potential negative impacts on biodiversity. Our objectives were to assess the effect of these management practices on timber production and biodiversity conservation and identify potential compensating effects between these practices, using the concept of ecological intensification as a framework. We performed a simulation study coupling Samsara2, a simulation model designed for spruce-fir uneven-aged mountain forests, an uneven-aged silviculture algorithm, and biodiversity models. We analyzed the effect of parameters related to uneven-aged management practices on timber production, biodiversity, and sustainability indicators. Our study confirmed that the indicators responded differently to management practices, leading to trade-offs situations. Increasing management intensity had negative impacts on several biodiversity indicators, which could be partly compensated by the positive effect of retention measures targeting large trees, non-dominant species, and deadwood. The impact of gap creation was more mitigated, with a positive effect on the diversity of tree sizes and deadwood but a negative impact on the spruce-fir mixing balance and on the diversity of the understory layer. Through the analysis of compensating effects, we finally revealed the existence of possible ecological intensification pathways, i.e., the possibility to increase management intensity while maintaining biodiversity through the promotion of nature-based management principles (gap creation and retention measures).

  19. Spatiotemporal dynamics of surface water networks across a global biodiversity hotspot—implications for conservation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tulbure, Mirela G.; Kininmonth, Stuart; Broich, Mark

    2014-11-01

    The concept of habitat networks represents an important tool for landscape conservation and management at regional scales. Previous studies simulated degradation of temporally fixed networks but few quantified the change in network connectivity from disintegration of key features that undergo naturally occurring spatiotemporal dynamics. This is particularly of concern for aquatic systems, which typically show high natural spatiotemporal variability. Here we focused on the Swan Coastal Plain, a bioregion that encompasses a global biodiversity hotspot in Australia with over 1500 water bodies of high biodiversity. Using graph theory, we conducted a temporal analysis of water body connectivity over 13 years of variable climate. We derived large networks of surface water bodies using Landsat data (1999-2011). We generated an ensemble of 278 potential networks at three dispersal distances approximating the maximum dispersal distance of different water dependent organisms. We assessed network connectivity through several network topology metrics and quantified the resilience of the network topology during wet and dry phases. We identified ‘stepping stone’ water bodies across time and compared our networks with theoretical network models with known properties. Results showed a highly dynamic seasonal pattern of variability in network topology metrics. A decline in connectivity over the 13 years was noted with potential negative consequences for species with limited dispersal capacity. The networks described here resemble theoretical scale-free models, also known as ‘rich get richer’ algorithm. The ‘stepping stone’ water bodies are located in the area around the Peel-Harvey Estuary, a Ramsar listed site, and some are located in a national park. Our results describe a powerful approach that can be implemented when assessing the connectivity for a particular organism with known dispersal distance. The approach of identifying the surface water bodies that act as

  20. Water resource management and biodiversity conservation in the Eastern Rift Valley Lakes, Northern Tanzania

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yanda, P. Z.; Madulu, N. F.

    The Eastern Rift Valley Lakes of East Africa and their watersheds have gone through significant anthropogenic changes over years. Several land use pressures and overexploitations of natural resources have eroded the biological and physical systems that support those resources. The principal objective of this study was to undertake a comprehensive water resource management problem analysis in the Eastern Rift Valley Lakes so as to highlight the current state of knowledge on key environmental and biodiversity problems, institutional capacities and needs to conserve biodiversity and water resources in the respective lakes. Two stages were be involved in data collection. The first stage involved literature search in libraries and documentation centres held in various institutions. Second stage involved the main fieldwork, which aimed at collecting secondary information from regional and districts offices situated within the basins in question. Findings from this study show that trends in the growth of human population, expansion of cropland and increase in livestock population in the Eastern Rift Valley Lakes zone indicate rapid increase over the next few decades. The pressure of this rapidly increasing population on the available resources will be too great to sustain desirable livelihood in the area. Even at the current rate of population increase, water resource utilisation in and around most Rift Valley Lakes is not sustainable. The intensification of agriculture through the application of fertilisers and pesticides will lead to the soil and water pollution, as is already happening in Mang’ola and Mto wa Mbu where irrigated farming is practised. Although a number of studies have been conducted in the Eastern Rift Valley Lakes and Wetlands in the Northern Tanzania, there are still a lot of issues which have not studied adequately.

  1. Global direct pressures on biodiversity by large-scale metal mining: Spatial distribution and implications for conservation.

    PubMed

    Murguía, Diego I; Bringezu, Stefan; Schaldach, Rüdiger

    2016-09-15

    Biodiversity loss is widely recognized as a serious global environmental change process. While large-scale metal mining activities do not belong to the top drivers of such change, these operations exert or may intensify pressures on biodiversity by adversely changing habitats, directly and indirectly, at local and regional scales. So far, analyses of global spatial dynamics of mining and its burden on biodiversity focused on the overlap between mines and protected areas or areas of high value for conservation. However, it is less clear how operating metal mines are globally exerting pressure on zones of different biodiversity richness; a similar gap exists for unmined but known mineral deposits. By using vascular plants' diversity as a proxy to quantify overall biodiversity, this study provides a first examination of the global spatial distribution of mines and deposits for five key metals across different biodiversity zones. The results indicate that mines and deposits are not randomly distributed, but concentrated within intermediate and high diversity zones, especially bauxite and silver. In contrast, iron, gold, and copper mines and deposits are closer to a more proportional distribution while showing a high concentration in the intermediate biodiversity zone. Considering the five metals together, 63% and 61% of available mines and deposits, respectively, are located in intermediate diversity zones, comprising 52% of the global land terrestrial surface. 23% of mines and 20% of ore deposits are located in areas of high plant diversity, covering 17% of the land. 13% of mines and 19% of deposits are in areas of low plant diversity, comprising 31% of the land surface. Thus, there seems to be potential for opening new mines in areas of low biodiversity in the future. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  2. Snakes on the Balearic Islands: An Invasion Tale with Implications for Native Biodiversity Conservation

    PubMed Central

    Sillero, Neftalí; Mateo, Jose A.; Carretero, Miguel A.

    2015-01-01

    Biological invasions are a major conservation threat for biodiversity worldwide. Islands are particularly vulnerable to invasive species, especially Mediterranean islands which have suffered human pressure since ancient times. In the Balearic archipelago, reptiles represent an outstanding case with more alien than native species. Moreover, in the last decade a new wave of alien snakes landed in the main islands of the archipelago, some of which were originally snake-free. The identification of the origin and colonization pathways of alien species, as well as the prediction of their expansion, is crucial to develop effective conservation strategies. In this study, we used molecular markers to assess the allochthonous status and the putative origin of the four introduced snake species (Hemorrhois hippocrepis, Malpolon monspessulanus, Macroprotodon mauritanicus and Rhinechis scalaris) as well as ecological niche models to infer their patterns of invasion and expansion based on current and future habitat suitability. For most species, DNA sequence data suggested the Iberian Peninsula as the potential origin of the allochthonous populations, although the shallow phylogeographic structure of these species prevented the identification of a restricted source-area. For all of them, the ecological niche models showed a current low habitat suitability in the Balearic, which is however predicted to increase significantly in the next few decades under climate change scenarios. Evidence from direct observations and spatial distribution of the first-occurrence records of alien snakes (but also lizards and worm lizards) suggest the nursery trade, and in particular olive tree importation from Iberian Peninsula, as the main pathway of introduction of alien reptiles in the Balearic islands. This trend has been reported also for recent invasions in NE Spain, thus showing that olive trees transplantation may be an effective vector for bioinvasion across the Mediterranean. The

  3. Current models broadly neglect specific needs of biodiversity conservation in protected areas under climate change.

    PubMed

    Sieck, Mungla; Ibisch, Pierre L; Moloney, Kirk A; Jeltsch, Florian

    2011-05-03

    Protected areas are the most common and important instrument for the conservation of biological diversity and are called for under the United Nations' Convention on Biological Diversity. Growing human population densities, intensified land-use, invasive species and increasing habitat fragmentation threaten ecosystems worldwide and protected areas are often the only refuge for endangered species. Climate change is posing an additional threat that may also impact ecosystems currently under protection. Therefore, it is of crucial importance to include the potential impact of climate change when designing future nature conservation strategies and implementing protected area management. This approach would go beyond reactive crisis management and, by necessity, would include anticipatory risk assessments. One avenue for doing so is being provided by simulation models that take advantage of the increase in computing capacity and performance that has occurred over the last two decades.Here we review the literature to determine the state-of-the-art in modeling terrestrial protected areas under climate change, with the aim of evaluating and detecting trends and gaps in the current approaches being employed, as well as to provide a useful overview and guidelines for future research. Most studies apply statistical, bioclimatic envelope models and focus primarily on plant species as compared to other taxa. Very few studies utilize a mechanistic, process-based approach and none examine biotic interactions like predation and competition. Important factors like land-use, habitat fragmentation, invasion and dispersal are rarely incorporated, restricting the informative value of the resulting predictions considerably. The general impression that emerges is that biodiversity conservation in protected areas could benefit from the application of modern modeling approaches to a greater extent than is currently reflected in the scientific literature. It is particularly true that

  4. Current models broadly neglect specific needs of biodiversity conservation in protected areas under climate change

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background Protected areas are the most common and important instrument for the conservation of biological diversity and are called for under the United Nations' Convention on Biological Diversity. Growing human population densities, intensified land-use, invasive species and increasing habitat fragmentation threaten ecosystems worldwide and protected areas are often the only refuge for endangered species. Climate change is posing an additional threat that may also impact ecosystems currently under protection. Therefore, it is of crucial importance to include the potential impact of climate change when designing future nature conservation strategies and implementing protected area management. This approach would go beyond reactive crisis management and, by necessity, would include anticipatory risk assessments. One avenue for doing so is being provided by simulation models that take advantage of the increase in computing capacity and performance that has occurred over the last two decades. Here we review the literature to determine the state-of-the-art in modeling terrestrial protected areas under climate change, with the aim of evaluating and detecting trends and gaps in the current approaches being employed, as well as to provide a useful overview and guidelines for future research. Results Most studies apply statistical, bioclimatic envelope models and focus primarily on plant species as compared to other taxa. Very few studies utilize a mechanistic, process-based approach and none examine biotic interactions like predation and competition. Important factors like land-use, habitat fragmentation, invasion and dispersal are rarely incorporated, restricting the informative value of the resulting predictions considerably. Conclusion The general impression that emerges is that biodiversity conservation in protected areas could benefit from the application of modern modeling approaches to a greater extent than is currently reflected in the scientific literature. It is

  5. Snakes on the Balearic islands: an invasion tale with implications for native biodiversity conservation.

    PubMed

    Silva-Rocha, Iolanda; Salvi, Daniele; Sillero, Neftalí; Mateo, Jose A; Carretero, Miguel A

    2015-01-01

    Biological invasions are a major conservation threat for biodiversity worldwide. Islands are particularly vulnerable to invasive species, especially Mediterranean islands which have suffered human pressure since ancient times. In the Balearic archipelago, reptiles represent an outstanding case with more alien than native species. Moreover, in the last decade a new wave of alien snakes landed in the main islands of the archipelago, some of which were originally snake-free. The identification of the origin and colonization pathways of alien species, as well as the prediction of their expansion, is crucial to develop effective conservation strategies. In this study, we used molecular markers to assess the allochthonous status and the putative origin of the four introduced snake species (Hemorrhois hippocrepis, Malpolon monspessulanus, Macroprotodon mauritanicus and Rhinechis scalaris) as well as ecological niche models to infer their patterns of invasion and expansion based on current and future habitat suitability. For most species, DNA sequence data suggested the Iberian Peninsula as the potential origin of the allochthonous populations, although the shallow phylogeographic structure of these species prevented the identification of a restricted source-area. For all of them, the ecological niche models showed a current low habitat suitability in the Balearic, which is however predicted to increase significantly in the next few decades under climate change scenarios. Evidence from direct observations and spatial distribution of the first-occurrence records of alien snakes (but also lizards and worm lizards) suggest the nursery trade, and in particular olive tree importation from Iberian Peninsula, as the main pathway of introduction of alien reptiles in the Balearic islands. This trend has been reported also for recent invasions in NE Spain, thus showing that olive trees transplantation may be an effective vector for bioinvasion across the Mediterranean. The

  6. A database of schemes that prioritize sites and species based on their conservation value: focusing business on biodiversity.

    PubMed

    Blundell, Arthur G; Burkey, Tormod V

    2007-09-27

    Biodiversity offsets are conservation projects used mainly by business to counterbalance the environmental impacts of their operations, with the aim of achieving a net neutral or even beneficial outcome for biodiversity. Companies considering offsets need to know: (1) if there are areas of such biological importance that no impact is acceptable, and outside of these no-go areas, (2) the relative importance of biodiversity in the impacted site versus the site(s) proposed for protection, to ensure that the offset is of equal or greater status than that lost through the company's operations. We compiled a database of 40 schemes that use various methods to assess conservation priorities, and we examined if the schemes would allow companies to answer the above questions. Overall, schemes tend to be designed to guide conservation organizations in their own priority setting or they categorize species based on conservation status. Generally, the schemes do not provide all the necessary information for offsets because they operate at a broad spatial scale or with low spatial resolution, which make it difficult to assess sites at the project level. Furthermore, most schemes do not explicitly incorporate threat, which we consider key to assessing whether offsets protect habitats or species that would otherwise be lost (i.e., provide additionality). The schemes are useful, however, for identifying the major conservation issues in different ecosystems around the globe. Companies can proceed by first avoiding, reducing, and mitigating impacts, and then using existing schemes to identify i) no-go areas and ii) appropriate offsets to compensate for any unavoidable loss in biodiversity. If existing schemes are inadequate, then companies should use integrated conservation planning techniques to define offset options within the region of their operations.

  7. A database of schemes that prioritize sites and species based on their conservation value: focusing business on biodiversity

    PubMed Central

    Blundell, Arthur G; Burkey, Tormod V

    2007-01-01

    Background Biodiversity offsets are conservation projects used mainly by business to counterbalance the environmental impacts of their operations, with the aim of achieving a net neutral or even beneficial outcome for biodiversity. Companies considering offsets need to know: (1) if there are areas of such biological importance that no impact is acceptable, and outside of these no-go areas, (2) the relative importance of biodiversity in the impacted site versus the site(s) proposed for protection, to ensure that the offset is of equal or greater status than that lost through the company's operations. We compiled a database of 40 schemes that use various methods to assess conservation priorities, and we examined if the schemes would allow companies to answer the above questions. Description Overall, schemes tend to be designed to guide conservation organizations in their own priority setting or they categorize species based on conservation status. Generally, the schemes do not provide all the necessary information for offsets because they operate at a broad spatial scale or with low spatial resolution, which make it difficult to assess sites at the project level. Furthermore, most schemes do not explicitly incorporate threat, which we consider key to assessing whether offsets protect habitats or species that would otherwise be lost (i.e., provide additionality). The schemes are useful, however, for identifying the major conservation issues in different ecosystems around the globe. Conclusion Companies can proceed by first avoiding, reducing, and mitigating impacts, and then using existing schemes to identify i) no-go areas and ii) appropriate offsets to compensate for any unavoidable loss in biodiversity. If existing schemes are inadequate, then companies should use integrated conservation planning techniques to define offset options within the region of their operations. PMID:17900366

  8. Effectiveness of Biodiversity Surrogates for Conservation Planning: Different Measures of Effectiveness Generate a Kaleidoscope of Variation

    PubMed Central

    Grantham, Hedley S.; Pressey, Robert L.; Wells, Jessie A.; Beattie, Andrew J.

    2010-01-01

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

  9. Elderly Adi Women of Arunachal Pradesh: "Living Encyclopedias" and Cultural Refugia in Biodiversity Conservation of the Eastern Himalaya, India

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Singh, Ranjay K.; Rallen, Orik; Padung, Egul

    2013-09-01

    Elderly women of a particular socioecological system are considered to be "living encyclopedias" in biocultural knowledge systems. These women play a pivotal role in retaining and passing on biodiversity-related traditional knowledge to the next generations. Unfortunately the fast changing sociocultural values and the impact of modernity have rendered their knowledge somewhat less valuable and they are being treated as "cultural refugia." Our study on the importance of these women in the conservation of indigenous biodiversity was conducted in 14 randomly selected villages dominated by the Adi tribe of East Siang District, Arunachal Pradesh (northeast India). Data were collected from 531 women (381 elderly and 150 young to middle aged) during 2003-2008 using conventional social science methods and participatory rural appraisal. One innovative method, namely "recipe contest," was devised to mobilize Adi women of each village in order to energies them and explore their knowledge relating to traditional foods, ethnomedicines, and conservation of indigenous biodiversity. Results indicated that 55 plant species are being used by elderly Adi women in their food systems, while 34 plant species are integral parts of ethnomedicinal practices. These women identified different plant species found under multistory canopies of community forests. Elderly women were particularly skilled in preparing traditional foods including beverages and held significantly greater knowledge of indigenous plants than younger women. Lifelong experiences and cultural diversity were found to influence the significance of biodiversity use and conservation. The conservation of biodiversity occurs in three different habitats: jhum lands (shifting cultivation), Morang forest (community managed forests), and home gardens. The knowledge and practice of elderly women about habitats and multistory vegetations, regenerative techniques, selective harvesting, and cultivation practices contribute

  10. Elderly Adi women of Arunachal Pradesh: "living encyclopedias" and cultural refugia in biodiversity conservation of the Eastern Himalaya, India.

    PubMed

    Singh, Ranjay K; Rallen, Orik; Padung, Egul

    2013-09-01

    Elderly women of a particular socioecological system are considered to be "living encyclopedias" in biocultural knowledge systems. These women play a pivotal role in retaining and passing on biodiversity-related traditional knowledge to the next generations. Unfortunately the fast changing sociocultural values and the impact of modernity have rendered their knowledge somewhat less valuable and they are being treated as "cultural refugia." Our study on the importance of these women in the conservation of indigenous biodiversity was conducted in 14 randomly selected villages dominated by the Adi tribe of East Siang District, Arunachal Pradesh (northeast India). Data were collected from 531 women (381 elderly and 150 young to middle aged) during 2003-2008 using conventional social science methods and participatory rural appraisal. One innovative method, namely "recipe contest," was devised to mobilize Adi women of each village in order to energies them and explore their knowledge relating to traditional foods, ethnomedicines, and conservation of indigenous biodiversity. Results indicated that 55 plant species are being used by elderly Adi women in their food systems, while 34 plant species are integral parts of ethnomedicinal practices. These women identified different plant species found under multistory canopies of community forests. Elderly women were particularly skilled in preparing traditional foods including beverages and held significantly greater knowledge of indigenous plants than younger women. Lifelong experiences and cultural diversity were found to influence the significance of biodiversity use and conservation. The conservation of biodiversity occurs in three different habitats: jhum lands (shifting cultivation), Morang forest (community managed forests), and home gardens. The knowledge and practice of elderly women about habitats and multistory vegetations, regenerative techniques, selective harvesting, and cultivation practices contribute

  11. Insular ecosystems of the southeastern United States—A regional synthesis to support biodiversity conservation in a changing climate

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Cartwright, Jennifer M.; Wolfe, William J.

    2016-08-11

    In the southeastern United States, insular ecosystems—such as rock outcrops, depression wetlands, high-elevation balds, flood-scoured riparian corridors, and insular prairies and barrens—occupy a small fraction of land area but constitute an important source of regional and global biodiversity, including concentrations of rare and endemic plant taxa. Maintenance of this biodiversity depends upon regimes of abiotic stress and disturbance, incorporating factors such as soil surface temperature, widely fluctuating hydrologic conditions, fires, flood scouring, and episodic droughts that may be subject to alteration by climate change. Over several decades, numerous localized, site-level investigations have yielded important information about the floristics, physical environments, and ecological dynamics of these insular ecosystems; however, the literature from these investigations has generally remained fragmented. This report consists of literature syntheses for eight categories of insular ecosystems of the southeastern United States, concerning (1) physical geography, (2) ecological determinants of community structures including vegetation dynamics and regimes of abiotic stress and disturbance, (3) contributions to regional and global biodiversity, (4) historical and current anthropogenic threats and conservation approaches, and (5) key knowledge gaps relevant to conservation, particularly in terms of climate-change effects on biodiversity. This regional synthesis was undertaken to discern patterns across ecosystems, identify knowledge gaps, and lay the groundwork for future analyses of climate-change vulnerability. Findings from this synthesis indicate that, despite their importance to regional and global biodiversity, insular ecosystems of the southeastern United States have been subjected to a variety of direct and indirect human alterations. In many cases, important questions remain concerning key determinants of ecosystem function. In particular, few

  12. Patterns and perceptions of climate change in a biodiversity conservation hotspot.

    PubMed

    Hartter, Joel; Stampone, Mary D; Ryan, Sadie J; Kirner, Karen; Chapman, Colin A; Goldman, Abraham

    2012-01-01

    Quantifying local people's perceptions to climate change, and their assessments of which changes matter, is fundamental to addressing the dual challenge of land conservation and poverty alleviation in densely populated tropical regions To develop appropriate policies and responses, it will be important not only to anticipate the nature of expected changes, but also how they are perceived, interpreted and adapted to by local residents. The Albertine Rift region in East Africa is one of the world's most threatened biodiversity hotspots due to dense smallholder agriculture, high levels of land and resource pressures, and habitat loss and conversion. Results of three separate household surveys conducted in the vicinity of Kibale National Park during the late 2000s indicate that farmers are concerned with variable precipitation. Many survey respondents reported that conditions are drier and rainfall timing is becoming less predictable. Analysis of daily rainfall data for the climate normal period 1981 to 2010 indicates that total rainfall both within and across seasons has not changed significantly, although the timing and transitions of seasons has been highly variable. Results of rainfall data analysis also indicate significant changes in the intra-seasonal rainfall distribution, including longer dry periods within rainy seasons, which may contribute to the perceived decrease in rainfall and can compromise food security. Our results highlight the need for fine-scale climate information to assist agro-ecological communities in developing effective adaptive management.

  13. Co-benefits of sustainable forest management in biodiversity conservation and carbon sequestration.

    PubMed

    Imai, Nobuo; Samejima, Hiromitsu; Langner, Andreas; Ong, Robert C; Kita, Satoshi; Titin, Jupiri; Chung, Arthur Y C; Lagan, Peter; Lee, Ying Fah; Kitayama, Kanehiro

    2009-12-11

    Sustainable forest management (SFM), which has been recently introduced to tropical natural production forests, is beneficial in maintaining timber resources, but information about the co-benefits for biodiversity conservation and carbon sequestration is currently lacking. We estimated the diversity of medium to large-bodied forest-dwelling vertebrates using a heat-sensor camera trapping system and the amount of above-ground, fine-roots, and soil organic carbon by a combination of ground surveys and aerial-imagery interpretations. This research was undertaken both in SFM applied as well as conventionally logged production forests in Sabah, Malaysian Borneo. Our carbon estimation revealed that the application of SFM resulted in a net gain of 54 Mg C ha(-1) on a landscape scale. Overall vertebrate diversity was greater in the SFM applied forest than in the conventionally logged forest. Specifically, several vertebrate species (6 out of recorded 36 species) showed higher frequency in the SFM applied forest than in the conventionally logged forest. The application of SFM to degraded natural production forests could result in greater diversity and abundance of vertebrate species as well as increasing carbon storage in the tropical rain forest ecosystems.

  14. Patterns and Perceptions of Climate Change in a Biodiversity Conservation Hotspot

    PubMed Central

    Hartter, Joel; Stampone, Mary D.; Ryan, Sadie J.; Kirner, Karen; Chapman, Colin A.; Goldman, Abraham

    2012-01-01

    Quantifying local people's perceptions to climate change, and their assessments of which changes matter, is fundamental to addressing the dual challenge of land conservation and poverty alleviation in densely populated tropical regions To develop appropriate policies and responses, it will be important not only to anticipate the nature of expected changes, but also how they are perceived, interpreted and adapted to by local residents. The Albertine Rift region in East Africa is one of the world's most threatened biodiversity hotspots due to dense smallholder agriculture, high levels of land and resource pressures, and habitat loss and conversion. Results of three separate household surveys conducted in the vicinity of Kibale National Park during the late 2000s indicate that farmers are concerned with variable precipitation. Many survey respondents reported that conditions are drier and rainfall timing is becoming less predictable. Analysis of daily rainfall data for the climate normal period 1981 to 2010 indicates that total rainfall both within and across seasons has not changed significantly, although the timing and transitions of seasons has been highly variable. Results of rainfall data analysis also indicate significant changes in the intra-seasonal rainfall distribution, including longer dry periods within rainy seasons, which may contribute to the perceived decrease in rainfall and can compromise food security. Our results highlight the need for fine-scale climate information to assist agro-ecological communities in developing effective adaptive management. PMID:22384244

  15. Lessons from the past: Paleoecological insights for conserving biodiversity on southern Appalachian landscapes

    SciTech Connect

    Delcourt, H.R.; Delcourt, P.A. )

    1994-06-01

    The southern Appalachian Mountains traditionally have been viewed as a center or origin for endemic species and a refuge for boreal and subtropical species at the peripheries of their ranges. High species richness observed today resulted in large part from shifts in ranges. Populations or rare northern species have persisted in the southern Appalachians since the Pleistocene because of habitat diversity maintained by natural geomorphic disturbances such as shifting stream courses in mountain gaps and landslides on steep slopes that create open glades within an otherwise forested landscape. Modern land use has resulted in a semi-natural landscape mosaic in which increasing fragmentation of forest islands had diminished landscape connectivity, removing travel corridors that were important to the survival of many taxa during the Quaternary. Accelerated climate change in a future Greenhouse world could result in more rapid turnover of species composition along regional ecotones, increasing the probability of local extinction for many species. To conserve biodiversity it is imperative to maintain a landscape matrix in the Appalachians that will maintain connectivity between patches of suitable habitat to allow for future northward range shifts.

  16. Co-Benefits of Sustainable Forest Management in Biodiversity Conservation and Carbon Sequestration

    PubMed Central

    Imai, Nobuo; Samejima, Hiromitsu; Langner, Andreas; Ong, Robert C.; Kita, Satoshi; Titin, Jupiri; Chung, Arthur Y. C.; Lagan, Peter; Lee, Ying Fah; Kitayama, Kanehiro

    2009-01-01

    Background Sustainable forest management (SFM), which has been recently introduced to tropical natural production forests, is beneficial in maintaining timber resources, but information about the co-benefits for biodiversity conservation and carbon sequestration is currently lacking. Methodology/Principal Findings We estimated the diversity of medium to large-bodied forest-dwelling vertebrates using a heat-sensor camera trapping system and the amount of above-ground, fine-roots, and soil organic carbon by a combination of ground surveys and aerial-imagery interpretations. This research was undertaken both in SFM applied as well as conventionally logged production forests in Sabah, Malaysian Borneo. Our carbon estimation revealed that the application of SFM resulted in a net gain of 54 Mg C ha-1 on a landscape scale. Overall vertebrate diversity was greater in the SFM applied forest than in the conventionally logged forest. Specifically, several vertebrate species (6 out of recorded 36 species) showed higher frequency in the SFM applied forest than in the conventionally logged forest. Conclusions/Significance The application of SFM to degraded natural production forests could result in greater diversity and abundance of vertebrate species as well as increasing carbon storage in the tropical rain forest ecosystems. PMID:20011516

  17. The evolution of Rare Pride: using evaluation to drive adaptive management in a biodiversity conservation organization.

    PubMed

    Jenks, Brett; Vaughan, Peter W; Butler, Paul J

    2010-05-01

    Rare Pride is a social marketing program that stimulates human behavior change in order to promote biodiversity conservation in critically threatened regions in developing countries. A series of formal evaluation studies, networking strategies, and evaluative inquiries have driven a 20-year process of adaptive management that has resulted in extensive programmatic changes within Pride. This paper describes the types of evaluation that Rare used to drive adaptive management and the changes it caused in Pride's theory-of-change and programmatic structure. We argue that (a) qualitative data gathered from partners and staff through structured interviews is most effective at identifying problems with current programs and procedures, (b) networking with other organizations is the most effective strategy for learning of new management strategies, and (c) quantitative data gathered through surveys is effective at measuring program impact and quality. Adaptive management has allowed Rare to increase its Pride program from implementing about two campaigns per year in 2001 to more than 40 per year in 2009 while improving program quality and maintaining program impact.

  18. Optimal allocation of Red List assessments to guide conservation of biodiversity in a rapidly changing world.

    PubMed

    Hermoso, Virgilio; Januchowski-Hartley, Stephanie Renee; Linke, Simon; Dudgeon, David; Petry, Paulo; McIntyre, Peter

    2017-02-06

    The IUCN Red List is the most extensive source of conservation status assessments for species worldwide, but important gaps in coverage remain. Here, we demonstrate the use of a spatial prioritization approach to efficiently prioritize species assessments to achieve increased and up-to-date coverage efficiently. We focus on freshwater fishes, which constitute a significant portion of vertebrate diversity, although comprehensive assessments are available for only 46% of species. We used marxan to identify ecoregions for future assessments that maximize the coverage of species while accounting for anthropogenic stress. We identified a set of priority regions that would help assess one-third (ca 4000 species) of all freshwater fishes in need of assessment by 2020. Such assessments could be achieved without increasing current investment levels. Our approach is suitable for any taxon and can help ensure that species threat assessments are sufficiently complete to guide global conservation efforts in a rapidly changing world.

  19. Reconciling timber extraction with biodiversity conservation in tropical forests using reduced-impact logging.

    PubMed

    Bicknell, Jake E; Struebig, Matthew J; Davies, Zoe G; Baraloto, Christopher

    2015-04-01

    Over 20% of the world's tropical forests have been selectively logged, and large expanses are allocated for future timber extraction. Reduced-impact logging (RIL) is being promoted as best practice forestry that increases sustainability and lowers CO2 emissions from logging, by reducing collateral damage associated with timber extraction. RIL is also expected to minimize the impacts of selective logging on biodiversity, although this is yet to be thoroughly tested.We undertake the most comprehensive study to date to investigate the biodiversity impacts of RIL across multiple taxonomic groups. We quantified birds, bats and large mammal assemblage structures, using a before-after control-impact (BACI) design across 20 sample sites over a 5-year period. Faunal surveys utilized point counts, mist nets and line transects and yielded >250 species. We examined assemblage responses to logging, as well as partitions of feeding guild and strata (understorey vs. canopy), and then tested for relationships with logging intensity to assess the primary determinants of community composition.Community analysis revealed little effect of RIL on overall assemblages, as structure and composition were similar before and after logging, and between logging and control sites. Variation in bird assemblages was explained by natural rates of change over time, and not logging intensity. However, when partitioned by feeding guild and strata, the frugivorous and canopy bird ensembles changed as a result of RIL, although the latter was also associated with change over time. Bats exhibited variable changes post-logging that were not related to logging, whereas large mammals showed no change at all.Indicator species analysis and correlations with logging intensities revealed that some species exhibited idiosyncratic responses to RIL, whilst abundance change of most others was associated with time.Synthesis and applications. Our study demonstrates the relatively benign effect of reduced

  20. Reconciling timber extraction with biodiversity conservation in tropical forests using reduced-impact logging

    PubMed Central

    Bicknell, Jake E; Struebig, Matthew J; Davies, Zoe G; Baraloto, Christopher

    2015-01-01

    Over 20% of the world's tropical forests have been selectively logged, and large expanses are allocated for future timber extraction. Reduced-impact logging (RIL) is being promoted as best practice forestry that increases sustainability and lowers CO2 emissions from logging, by reducing collateral damage associated with timber extraction. RIL is also expected to minimize the impacts of selective logging on biodiversity, although this is yet to be thoroughly tested. We undertake the most comprehensive study to date to investigate the biodiversity impacts of RIL across multiple taxonomic groups. We quantified birds, bats and large mammal assemblage structures, using a before-after control-impact (BACI) design across 20 sample sites over a 5-year period. Faunal surveys utilized point counts, mist nets and line transects and yielded >250 species. We examined assemblage responses to logging, as well as partitions of feeding guild and strata (understorey vs. canopy), and then tested for relationships with logging intensity to assess the primary determinants of community composition. Community analysis revealed little effect of RIL on overall assemblages, as structure and composition were similar before and after logging, and between logging and control sites. Variation in bird assemblages was explained by natural rates of change over time, and not logging intensity. However, when partitioned by feeding guild and strata, the frugivorous and canopy bird ensembles changed as a result of RIL, although the latter was also associated with change over time. Bats exhibited variable changes post-logging that were not related to logging, whereas large mammals showed no change at all. Indicator species analysis and correlations with logging intensities revealed that some species exhibited idiosyncratic responses to RIL, whilst abundance change of most others was associated with time. Synthesis and applications. Our study demonstrates the relatively benign effect of reduced

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-06-01

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

  2. Options for biodiversity conservation in managed forest landscapes of multiple ownerships in Oregon and Washington, USA.

    Treesearch

    N. Suzuki; D.H. Olson

    2007-01-01

    We review the policies and management approaches used in U.S. Pacific Northwest planted forest to address biodiversity protection. We provide a case-study watershed design from southern Oregon, integrating various stand-to-landscape biodiversity-management approaches.

  3. 77 FR 43723 - Energy Efficiency and Conservation Loan Program

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2012-07-26

    ... demand side management (DSM), EE Programs and energy conservation programs. This proposed rulemaking... matter, energy efficiency investment includes the eligible purposes of DSM and energy conservation as... implement DSM, EE Programs and conservation programs, and on-grid and off-grid renewable energy...

  4. Dependency of global primary bioenergy crop potentials in 2050 on food systems, yields, biodiversity conservation and political stability.

    PubMed

    Erb, Karl-Heinz; Haberl, Helmut; Plutzar, Christoph

    2012-08-01

    The future bioenergy crop potential depends on (1) changes in the food system (food demand, agricultural technology), (2) political stability and investment security, (3) biodiversity conservation, (4) avoidance of long carbon payback times from deforestation, and (5) energy crop yields. Using a biophysical biomass-balance model, we analyze how these factors affect global primary bioenergy potentials in 2050. The model calculates biomass supply and demand balances for eleven world regions, eleven food categories, seven food crop types and two livestock categories, integrating agricultural forecasts and scenarios with a consistent global land use and NPP database. The TREND scenario results in a global primary bioenergy potential of 77 EJ/yr, alternative assumptions on food-system changes result in a range of 26-141 EJ/yr. Exclusion of areas for biodiversity conservation and inaccessible land in failed states reduces the bioenergy potential by up to 45%. Optimistic assumptions on future energy crop yields increase the potential by up to 48%, while pessimistic assumptions lower the potential by 26%. We conclude that the design of sustainable bioenergy crop production policies needs to resolve difficult trade-offs such as food vs. energy supply, renewable energy vs. biodiversity conservation or yield growth vs. reduction of environmental problems of intensive agriculture.

  5. Dependency of global primary bioenergy crop potentials in 2050 on food systems, yields, biodiversity conservation and political stability

    PubMed Central

    Erb, Karl-Heinz; Haberl, Helmut; Plutzar, Christoph

    2012-01-01

    The future bioenergy crop potential depends on (1) changes in the food system (food demand, agricultural technology), (2) political stability and investment security, (3) biodiversity conservation, (4) avoidance of long carbon payback times from deforestation, and (5) energy crop yields. Using a biophysical biomass-balance model, we analyze how these factors affect global primary bioenergy potentials in 2050. The model calculates biomass supply and demand balances for eleven world regions, eleven food categories, seven food crop types and two livestock categories, integrating agricultural forecasts and scenarios with a consistent global land use and NPP database. The TREND scenario results in a global primary bioenergy potential of 77 EJ/yr, alternative assumptions on food-system changes result in a range of 26–141 EJ/yr. Exclusion of areas for biodiversity conservation and inaccessible land in failed states reduces the bioenergy potential by up to 45%. Optimistic assumptions on future energy crop yields increase the potential by up to 48%, while pessimistic assumptions lower the potential by 26%. We conclude that the design of sustainable bioenergy crop production policies needs to resolve difficult trade-offs such as food vs. energy supply, renewable energy vs. biodiversity conservation or yield growth vs. reduction of environmental problems of intensive agriculture. PMID:23576836

  6. Biodiversity Prospecting.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sittenfeld, Ana; Lovejoy, Annie

    1994-01-01

    Examines the use of biodiversity prospecting as a method for tropical countries to value biodiversity and contribute to conservation upkeep costs. Discusses the first agreement between a public interest organization and pharmaceutical company for the extraction of plant and animal materials in Costa Rica. (LZ)

  7. Large-Scale Habitat Corridors for Biodiversity Conservation: A Forest Corridor in Madagascar

    PubMed Central

    Ramiadantsoa, Tanjona; Ovaskainen, Otso; Rybicki, Joel; Hanski, Ilkka

    2015-01-01

    In biodiversity conservation, habitat corridors are assumed to increase landscape-level connectivity and to enhance the viability of otherwise isolated populations. While the role of corridors is supported by empirical evidence, studies have typically been conducted at small spatial scales. Here, we assess the quality and the functionality of a large 95-km long forest corridor connecting two large national parks (416 and 311 km2) in the southeastern escarpment of Madagascar. We analyze the occurrence of 300 species in 5 taxonomic groups in the parks and in the corridor, and combine high-resolution forest cover data with a simulation model to examine various scenarios of corridor destruction. At present, the corridor contains essentially the same communities as the national parks, reflecting its breadth which on average matches that of the parks. In the simulation model, we consider three types of dispersers: passive dispersers, which settle randomly around the source population; active dispersers, which settle only in favorable habitat; and gap-avoiding active dispersers, which avoid dispersing across non-habitat. Our results suggest that long-distance passive dispersers are most sensitive to ongoing degradation of the corridor, because increasing numbers of propagules are lost outside the forest habitat. For a wide range of dispersal parameters, the national parks are large enough to sustain stable populations until the corridor becomes severely broken, which will happen around 2065 if the current rate of forest loss continues. A significant decrease in gene flow along the corridor is expected after 2040, and this will exacerbate the adverse consequences of isolation. Our results demonstrate that simulation studies assessing the role of habitat corridors should pay close attention to the mode of dispersal and the effects of regional stochasticity. PMID:26200351

  8. Forest management and biodiversity conservation based on natural ecosystem dynamics in northern Europe: the complexity challenge.

    PubMed

    Kuuluvainen, Timo

    2009-09-01

    Recent research in northern Europe has revised many long-held conceptions of the complexity of forest ecosystems and their natural structure and dynamics. The unveiling of the picture of natural characteristics of forest ecosystem structure and dynamics reveals much more diversity than its traditional complement, highlighting the importance of non-stand-replacing disturbances and the associated heterogeneous and dynamic stand and landscape structures. This increasing detail is a reflection of a fundamental change in the ecological understanding of forests as complex ecosystems. In particular, the generalization that the boreal forest is regulated by fierce stand-replacing disturbances, leading to the dominance of even-aged stand successions, has been disproved. However, this misconception has, until now, been repeated and used to legitimize the dominant practice of clear-cutting as a nature-based way to manage the forest. The practical conclusion of this review paper is that the dominating forest management model in North European boreal forests, which is based on the clear-cut harvesting of timber and growing of even-aged stands, is in contradiction with the variable and complex characteristics of the disturbance-succession cycle observed in naturally dynamic forests with negligible human impact. As a consequence, the structural variation of the boreal forest under management has been grossly truncated compared with its natural range. Because of this, and due to the scarcity of protection areas in many regions of northern Europe, it is not likely that the conservation of native biodiversity and ecological sustainability will be attained, assuming that the model of forest management remains unchanged. Thus, there is a strong incentive for change in the prevailing forest management model toward one that is based on natural ecosystem dynamics and an understanding of forests as complex systems.

  9. Large-Scale Habitat Corridors for Biodiversity Conservation: A Forest Corridor in Madagascar.

    PubMed

    Ramiadantsoa, Tanjona; Ovaskainen, Otso; Rybicki, Joel; Hanski, Ilkka

    2015-01-01

    In biodiversity conservation, habitat corridors are assumed to increase landscape-level connectivity and to enhance the viability of otherwise isolated populations. While the role of corridors is supported by empirical evidence, studies have typically been conducted at small spatial scales. Here, we assess the quality and the functionality of a large 95-km long forest corridor connecting two large national parks (416 and 311 km2) in the southeastern escarpment of Madagascar. We analyze the occurrence of 300 species in 5 taxonomic groups in the parks and in the corridor, and combine high-resolution forest cover data with a simulation model to examine various scenarios of corridor destruction. At present, the corridor contains essentially the same communities as the national parks, reflecting its breadth which on average matches that of the parks. In the simulation model, we consider three types of dispersers: passive dispersers, which settle randomly around the source population; active dispersers, which settle only in favorable habitat; and gap-avoiding active dispersers, which avoid dispersing across non-habitat. Our results suggest that long-distance passive dispersers are most sensitive to ongoing degradation of the corridor, because increasing numbers of propagules are lost outside the forest habitat. For a wide range of dispersal parameters, the national parks are large enough to sustain stable populations until the corridor becomes severely broken, which will happen around 2065 if the current rate of forest loss continues. A significant decrease in gene flow along the corridor is expected after 2040, and this will exacerbate the adverse consequences of isolation. Our results demonstrate that simulation studies assessing the role of habitat corridors should pay close attention to the mode of dispersal and the effects of regional stochasticity.

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-01-01

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

  11. Human interest meets biodiversity hotspots: A new systematic approach for urban ecosystem conservation

    PubMed Central

    Kasada, Minoru; Matsuba, Misako; Miyashita, Tadashi

    2017-01-01

    Creating a win-win relationship between biodiversity and human well-being is one of the major current challenges for environmental policy. One way to approach this challenge is to identify sites with both high biodiversity and high human interest in urban areas. Here, we propose a new systematic approach to identify such sites by using land prices and biodiversity indexes for butterflies and birds from a nationwide perspective. As a result, we found sites that are valuable to humans and to other organisms, including national red-list species, and they are located in sites with cultural heritages and near seaside. By referencing the habitat features and landscape characteristics of these sites, we can establish high quality environments that provide a benefit to both humans and biodiversity in urban landscapes. PMID:28235020

  12. The Development of Web-GIS to support Resort Based Management for Conservation and Biodiversity in Indonesia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vatresia, A.; Regen, R.

    2016-12-01

    Biodiversity loss is a global issue, but it is the pressing concern in mega-diverse countries, such as Indonesia. The lack of the data standardisation and remote area spread on 17.504 islands made it hard to organise and to manage without the aid of any technology on it. In this paper, we develop an application for forest rangers to capture the data of biodiversity and conservation in Indonesia that will integrate with web technology to manage the data. All of the processes was supported by the Ministry of Environmental and Forestry in Indonesia as the user of the system. This development was based on the latest law and policy in Indonesia to monitor the performance of conservation activity and biodiversity in Indonesia. It was developed by using Java and PHP programming language. The method we used is System Development Life Cycling (SDLC) and Unified Modelling Language (UML) 2.0 as the design model and the guidance to perform the system. The application was tested by using the method of the black box and the white box methodology that showed the system was rated as a GOOD application by the user. The result of the testing was also showed that all of the function in the system could be use for improving the performance of the user.

  13. Barcoding Chrysomelidae: a resource for taxonomy and biodiversity conservation in the Mediterranean Region

    PubMed Central

    Magoga, Giulia; Sassi, Davide; Daccordi, Mauro; Leonardi, Carlo; Mirzaei, Mostafa; Regalin, Renato; Lozzia, Giuseppe; Montagna, Matteo

    2016-01-01

    Abstract The Mediterranean Region is one of the world’s biodiversity hot-spots, which is also characterized by high level of endemism. Approximately 2100 species of leaf beetle (Coleoptera; Chrysomelidae) are known from this area, a number that increases year after year and represents 5/6% of the known species. These features, associated with the urgent need to develop a DNA-based species identification approach for a broad spectrum of leaf beetle species, prompted us to develop a database of nucleotide sequences, with a solid taxonomic background, for all the Chrysomelidae Latreille, 1802 sensu latu inhabiting the Mediterranean region. The Mediterranean Chrysomelidae Barcoding project, which has started in 2009, involves more than fifty entomologists and molecular biologists from different European countries. Numerous collecting campaigns have been organized during the first seven years of the project, which led to the collection of more than 5000 leaf beetle specimens. In addition, during these collecting campaigns two new allochthonous species for Europe, namely Ophraella communa LeSage, 1986 and Colasposoma dauricum Mannerheim, 1849, were intercepted and some species new to science were discovered (e.g., Pachybrachis sassii Montagna, 2011 and Pachybrachis holerorum Montagna et al., 2013). DNA was extracted from 1006 specimens (~13% of the species inhabiting the Mediterranean region) and a total of 910 cox1 gene sequences were obtained (PCR amplification efficiency of 93.8%). Here we report the list of the barcoded subfamilies, genera and the number of species for which cox1 gene sequences were obtained; the metadata associated with each specimen and a list of problematic species for which marker amplification failed. In addition, the nucleotide divergence within and between species and genera was estimated and values of intraspecific nucleotide divergence greater than the average have been discussed. Cryptocephalus quadripunctatus G. A. Olivier, 1808

  14. Measuring the Conservation Value of Tropical Primary Forests: The Effect of Occasional Species on Estimates of Biodiversity Uniqueness

    PubMed Central

    Barlow, Jos; Gardner, Toby A.; Louzada, Julio; Peres, Carlos A.

    2010-01-01

    Background Developing effective conservation plans for multi-functional landscapes requires an accurate knowledge of the relative conservation value of different land-uses. A growing number of tropical ecologists have evaluated conservation value using the number (or proportion) of species that are unique to primary or old-growth forests. However, estimates of the conservation value of modified land-uses may be inflated by the presence of occasional species (e.g. singletons and doubletons) that may be unable to exist as viable populations in isolation. Methodology/Principal Findings We use a unique 15-taxa dataset from a mixed-use forest landscape in the Brazilian Amazon to test the hypothesis that the removal of occasional species from sample data can increase estimates of the value of primary forest for biodiversity conservation. Conclusions/Significance Estimates of conservation value that are based on the proportion of species that are unique to tropical primary or old-growth forests are highly sensitive to decisions researchers make regarding the inclusion or exclusion of occasional species. By removing singletons from modified forest samples, and considering only those species known to occur in primary forest, we almost double estimates of the conservation value of tropical primary forests. PMID:20231897

  15. Teaching and learning about zoos and biodiversity conservation: Student, teacher, and zoo staff perspectives and experiences

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Skinner-Winslow, Jennifer Anastasia

    This study is situated at the intersection of school science and zoo education programs. It seeks to contribute to the literature by focusing on the perspectives and experiences of students, teachers, and zoo staff. The research moves beyond focusing on a visit to the zoo to include a complementary unit of study in a science classroom. Using a case study research design (Yin, 1994), I engaged in a unit of study focusing on zoos and biodiversity conservation with a teacher and his Grade 11 biology class; conducted interviews with the teacher, 14 students, and 11 zoo staff; administered teacher and student surveys; and collected supporting documentation. The curricular context for this study aligned with STSE education emphases and strategies (Pedretti & Nazir, 2011). Significant themes were identified in the data using the constant comparative method (Lincoln & Guba, 1985) and formed the basis for six vignettes (Polkinghorne, 1995). It was found that the teacher and most students held mixed views (concurrently for and against zoos), except for one student who held a consistent against-zoos stance. The zoo staff held a predominately for-zoos stance, yet were concerned about poor public perception of zoos. Findings suggest that the complex nature of modern zoos in society (Hyson, 2004; Lindburg, 1999) was reflected in the participants' views. The teacher and zoo staff responded to these views in various ways, but educating the students about zoos was most common. The students stated that views against zoos did not impact their learning, although occasional tension over views occurred amongst students and the variable nature of zoos appeared to affect the students' willingness to learn in zoos. The students revealed that exposure to multiple perspectives influenced how they formed views on zoos, and educator positioning on zoos was noticed by the students. These findings suggest that the teacher and zoo staff faced pedagogical challenges when responding to multiple

  16. Biodiversity losses and conservation trade-offs: Assessing future urban growth scenarios for a North American trade corridor

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Villarreal, Miguel; Norman, Laura M.; Wallace, Cynthia S.A.; Boykin, Kenneth

    2013-01-01

    The Sonoran Desert and Apache Highlands ecoregions of North America are areas of exceptionally high plant and vertebrate biodiversity. However, much of the vertebrate biodiversity is supported by only a few vegetation types with limited distributions, some of which are increasingly threatened by changing land uses. We assessed the impacts of two future urban growth scenarios on biodiversity in a binational watershed in Arizona, USA and Sonora, Mexico. We quantified and mapped terrestrial vertebrate species richness using Wildlife Habitat Relation models and validated the results with data from National Park Service biological inventories. Future urban growth, based on historical trends, was projected to the year 2050 for 1) a “Current Trends” scenario and, 2) a “Megalopolis” scenario that represented a transnational growth corridor with open-space conservation attributes. Based on Current Trends, 45% of existing riparian woodland (267 of 451species), and 34% of semi-desert grasslands (215 of 451 species) will be lost, whereas, in the Megalopolis scenario, these types would decline by 44% and 24% respectively. Outcomes of the two models suggest a trade-off at the taxonomic class level: Current Trends would reduce and fragment mammal and herpetofauna habitat, while Megalopolis would result in loss of avian-rich riparian habitat.

  17. Analysing biodiversity and conservation knowledge products to support regional environmental assessments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brooks, Thomas M.; Akçakaya, H. Resit; Burgess, Neil D.; Butchart, Stuart H. M.; Hilton-Taylor, Craig; Hoffmann, Michael; Juffe-Bignoli, Diego; Kingston, Naomi; Macsharry, Brian; Parr, Mike; Perianin, Laurence; Regan, Eugenie C.; Rodrigues, Ana S. L.; Rondinini, Carlo; Shennan-Farpon, Yara; Young, Bruce E.

    2016-02-01

    Two processes for regional environmental assessment are currently underway: the Global Environment Outlook (GEO) and Intergovernmental Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES). Both face constraints of data, time, capacity, and resources. To support these assessments, we disaggregate three global knowledge products according to their regions and subregions. These products are: The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species, Key Biodiversity Areas (specifically Important Bird & Biodiversity Areas [IBAs], and Alliance for Zero Extinction [AZE] sites), and Protected Planet. We present fourteen Data citations: numbers of species occurring and percentages threatened; numbers of endemics and percentages threatened; downscaled Red List Indices for mammals, birds, and amphibians; numbers, mean sizes, and percentage coverages of IBAs and AZE sites; percentage coverage of land and sea by protected areas; and trends in percentages of IBAs and AZE sites wholly covered by protected areas. These data will inform the regional/subregional assessment chapters on the status of biodiversity, drivers of its decline, and institutional responses, and greatly facilitate comparability and consistency between the different regional/subregional assessments.

  18. Biodiversity Loss, the Motivation Problem, and the Future of Conservation Education in the United States

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Grove-Fanning, William

    2011-01-01

    The purpose of this dissertation is to make sense of two sets of reactions. On the one hand, Americans can barely lift a finger to help threatened and endangered species while on the other, they routinely come to the aid of human victims of disaster. I argue that in contrast to cases of human tragedy, for the biodiversity crisis conservationists…

  19. Scenario analysis for biodiversity conservation: a social-ecological system approach in the Australian Alps.

    PubMed

    Mitchell, Michael; Lockwood, Michael; Moore, Susan A; Clement, Sarah

    2015-03-01

    Current policy interventions are having limited success in addressing the ongoing decline in global biodiversity. In part, this is attributable to insufficient attention being paid to the social and governance processes that drive decisions and can undermine their implementation. Scenario planning that draws on social-ecological systems (SES) analysis provides a useful means to systematically explore and anticipate future uncertainties regarding the interaction between humans and biodiversity outcomes. However, the effective application of SES models has been limited by the insufficient attention given to governance influences. Understanding the influence governance attributes have on the future trajectory of SES is likely to assist choice of effective interventions, as well as needs and opportunities for governance reform. In a case study in the Australian Alps, we explore the potential of joint SES and scenario analyses to identify how governance influences landscape-scale biodiversity outcomes. Novel aspects of our application of these methods were the specification of the focal system's governance attributes according to requirements for adaptive capacity, and constraining scenarios according to the current governance settings while varying key social and biophysical drivers. This approach allowed us to identify how current governance arrangements influence landscape-scale biodiversity outcomes, and establishes a baseline from which the potential benefits of governance reform can be assessed. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  20. Analysing biodiversity and conservation knowledge products to support regional environmental assessments.

    PubMed

    Brooks, Thomas M; Akçakaya, H Resit; Burgess, Neil D; Butchart, Stuart H M; Hilton-Taylor, Craig; Hoffmann, Michael; Juffe-Bignoli, Diego; Kingston, Naomi; MacSharry, Brian; Parr, Mike; Perianin, Laurence; Regan, Eugenie C; Rodrigues, Ana S L; Rondinini, Carlo; Shennan-Farpon, Yara; Young, Bruce E

    2016-02-16

    Two processes for regional environmental assessment are currently underway: the Global Environment Outlook (GEO) and Intergovernmental Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES). Both face constraints of data, time, capacity, and resources. To support these assessments, we disaggregate three global knowledge products according to their regions and subregions. These products are: The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species, Key Biodiversity Areas (specifically Important Bird &Biodiversity Areas [IBAs], and Alliance for Zero Extinction [AZE] sites), and Protected Planet. We present fourteen Data citations: numbers of species occurring and percentages threatened; numbers of endemics and percentages threatened; downscaled Red List Indices for mammals, birds, and amphibians; numbers, mean sizes, and percentage coverages of IBAs and AZE sites; percentage coverage of land and sea by protected areas; and trends in percentages of IBAs and AZE sites wholly covered by protected areas. These data will inform the regional/subregional assessment chapters on the status of biodiversity, drivers of its decline, and institutional responses, and greatly facilitate comparability and consistency between the different regional/subregional assessments.

  1. A Participatory Approach to University Teaching about Partnerships for Biodiversity Conservation

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gladstone, William; Stanger, Robin; Phelps, Liz

    2006-01-01

    Loss of biodiversity and habitats is one of the greatest threats to the environment and education has a critical role to play in addressing this issue. This paper describes a teaching activity for first-year university students studying sustainable resource management at the University of Newcastle which established a partnership between…

  2. A Participatory Approach to University Teaching about Partnerships for Biodiversity Conservation

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gladstone, William; Stanger, Robin; Phelps, Liz

    2006-01-01

    Loss of biodiversity and habitats is one of the greatest threats to the environment and education has a critical role to play in addressing this issue. This paper describes a teaching activity for first-year university students studying sustainable resource management at the University of Newcastle which established a partnership between…

  3. Biodiversity Loss, the Motivation Problem, and the Future of Conservation Education in the United States

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Grove-Fanning, William

    2011-01-01

    The purpose of this dissertation is to make sense of two sets of reactions. On the one hand, Americans can barely lift a finger to help threatened and endangered species while on the other, they routinely come to the aid of human victims of disaster. I argue that in contrast to cases of human tragedy, for the biodiversity crisis conservationists…

  4. Analysing biodiversity and conservation knowledge products to support regional environmental assessments

    PubMed Central

    Brooks, Thomas M.; Akçakaya, H. Resit; Burgess, Neil D.; Butchart, Stuart H.M.; Hilton-Taylor, Craig; Hoffmann, Michael; Juffe-Bignoli, Diego; Kingston, Naomi; MacSharry, Brian; Parr, Mike; Perianin, Laurence; Regan, Eugenie C.; Rodrigues, Ana S.L.; Rondinini, Carlo; Shennan-Farpon, Yara; Young, Bruce E.

    2016-01-01

    Two processes for regional environmental assessment are currently underway: the Global Environment Outlook (GEO) and Intergovernmental Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES). Both face constraints of data, time, capacity, and resources. To support these assessments, we disaggregate three global knowledge products according to their regions and subregions. These products are: The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species, Key Biodiversity Areas (specifically Important Bird & Biodiversity Areas [IBAs], and Alliance for Zero Extinction [AZE] sites), and Protected Planet. We present fourteen Data citations: numbers of species occurring and percentages threatened; numbers of endemics and percentages threatened; downscaled Red List Indices for mammals, birds, and amphibians; numbers, mean sizes, and percentage coverages of IBAs and AZE sites; percentage coverage of land and sea by protected areas; and trends in percentages of IBAs and AZE sites wholly covered by protected areas. These data will inform the regional/subregional assessment chapters on the status of biodiversity, drivers of its decline, and institutional responses, and greatly facilitate comparability and consistency between the different regional/subregional assessments. PMID:26881749

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-03-15

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

  6. Biodiversity for billionaires: capitalism, conservation and the role of philanthropy in saving/selling nature.

    PubMed

    Holmes, George

    2012-01-01

    This article examines the role of philanthropy in conservation as a way of exploring how and why conservation might be becoming more neoliberal. It describes how conservation philanthropy supports capitalism both discursively and in more practical ways. Philanthropy is examined in terms of the two forces considered to be driving the neoliberalization of conservation — the need for capitalism to find new ways of making money, and the desire of conservationists to engage with capitalism as the best way of getting things done. It demonstrates how philanthropy can speak to both of these logics simultaneously, particularly through emerging ideas of philanthrocapitalism, which may be enhancing the neoliberalization of both philanthropy and conservation.

  7. Scale in conservation planning

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Conservation planning has been widely embraced as a method to efficiently allocate limited resources to those aspects of biodiversity most in need of protection or management. However, in order to create successful strategies for long-term biodiversity protection and sustainability, explicit conside...

  8. Reduced-impact logging and biodiversity conservation: a case study from Borneo.

    PubMed

    Edwards, David P; Woodcock, Paul; Edwards, Felicity A; Larsen, Trond H; Hsu, Wayne W; Benedick, Suzan; Wilcove, David S

    2012-03-01

    A key driver of rain forest degradation is rampant commercial logging. Reduced-impact logging (RIL) techniques dramatically reduce residual damage to vegetation and soils, and they enhance the long-term economic viability of timber operations when compared to conventionally managed logging enterprises. Consequently, the application of RIL is increasing across the tropics, yet our knowledge of the potential for RIL also to reduce the negative impacts of logging on biodiversity is minimal. We compare the impacts of RIL on birds, leaf-litter ants, and dung beetles during a second logging rotation in Sabah, Borneo, with the impacts of conventional logging (CL) as well as with primary (unlogged) forest. Our study took place 1-8 years after the cessation of logging. The species richness and composition of RIL vs. CL forests were very similar for each taxonomic group. Both RIL and CL differed significantly from unlogged forests in terms of bird and ant species composition (although both retained a large number of the species found in unlogged forests), whereas the composition of dung beetle communities did not differ significantly among forest types. Our results show little difference in biodiversity between RIL and CL over the short-term. However, biodiversity benefits from RIL may accrue over longer time periods after the cessation of logging. We highlight a severe lack of studies investigating this possibility. Moreover, if RIL increases the economic value of selectively logged forests (e.g., via REDD+, a United Nations program: Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation in Developing Countries), it could help prevent them from being converted to agricultural plantations, which results in a tremendous loss of biodiversity.

  9. On purpose in science, conservation and government. The functional integrity of the earth is at issue not biodiversity.

    PubMed

    Woodwell, George M

    2002-08-01

    The objectives of conservation have been focused ever more intensively for two decades on the preservation of "biodiversity." Emphasis has been on the losses of species through extinction. The cure has been the establishment of parks and reserves to protect "hot spots," especially in the tropics, where the diversity of species is high. The efforts in preservation have often extended to the development of connecting links among reserves to allow movements among them. The approach has been codified in law in the form of the Endangered Species Act in the United States and the Biodiversity Treaty, both of which address the issue species by species and each of which has obvious weaknesses. Such efforts may be appropriate but they are totally inadequate as the sum of activities in conservation in a world of 6 billion people with exploding technologies for exploiting virtually all of the earth for immediate human benefit. The biosphere is decaying rapidly as a habitat for all life, including people, not because of the extinction of species, but because of the progressive impoverishment of natural communities through human-induced chronic disruption that is now global and ubiquitous. The improverishment leads to progressive environmental dysfunction that is cumulative, but only in its later stages leads to extinction of species. Long before extinction becomes important, genetically distinct, local ecotypes are lost and the natural communities in which they were developed become improverished and dysfunctional. The most conspicuous disruption is that of climate, a global change in the environment of every ecosystem. The most elaborate and carefully interlinked array of natural reserves will succumb as climate is moved out from under them... and biodiversity will suffer the very extinctions the parks were established to avoid. But long before that, the human environment will suffer conspicuous and progressive impoverishment. The objective of conservation is the preservation

  10. A biodiversity hotspot losing its top predator: The challenge of jaguar conservation in the Atlantic Forest of South America

    PubMed Central

    Paviolo, Agustin; De Angelo, Carlos; Ferraz, Katia M. P. M. B.; Morato, Ronaldo G.; Martinez Pardo, Julia; Srbek-Araujo, Ana C.; Beisiegel, Beatriz de Mello; Lima, Fernando; Sana, Denis; Xavier da Silva, Marina; Velázquez, Myriam C.; Cullen, Laury; Crawshaw Jr, Peter; Jorge, María Luisa S. P.; Galetti, Pedro M.; Di Bitetti, Mario S.; de Paula, Rogerio Cunha; Eizirik, Eduardo; Aide, T. Mitchell; Cruz, Paula; Perilli, Miriam L. L.; Souza, Andiara S. M. C.; Quiroga, Verónica; Nakano, Eduardo; Ramírez Pinto, Fredy; Fernández, Sixto; Costa, Sebastian; Moraes Jr, Edsel A.; Azevedo, Fernando

    2016-01-01

    The jaguar is the top predator of the Atlantic Forest (AF), which is a highly threatened biodiversity hotspot that occurs in Brazil, Paraguay and Argentina. By combining data sets from 14 research groups across the region, we determine the population status of the jaguar and propose a spatial prioritization for conservation actions. About 85% of the jaguar’s habitat in the AF has been lost and only 7% remains in good condition. Jaguars persist in around 2.8% of the region, and live in very low densities in most of the areas. The population of jaguars in the AF is probably lower than 300 individuals scattered in small sub-populations. We identified seven Jaguar Conservation Units (JCUs) and seven potential JCUs, and only three of these areas may have ≥50 individuals. A connectivity analysis shows that most of the JCUs are isolated. Habitat loss and fragmentation were the major causes for jaguar decline, but human induced mortality is the main threat for the remaining population. We classified areas according to their contribution to jaguar conservation and we recommend management actions for each of them. The methodology in this study could be used for conservation planning of other carnivore species. PMID:27849006

  11. A biodiversity hotspot losing its top predator: The challenge of jaguar conservation in the Atlantic Forest of South America.

    PubMed

    Paviolo, Agustin; De Angelo, Carlos; Ferraz, Katia M P M B; Morato, Ronaldo G; Martinez Pardo, Julia; Srbek-Araujo, Ana C; Beisiegel, Beatriz de Mello; Lima, Fernando; Sana, Denis; Xavier da Silva, Marina; Velázquez, Myriam C; Cullen, Laury; Crawshaw, Peter; Jorge, María Luisa S P; Galetti, Pedro M; Di Bitetti, Mario S; de Paula, Rogerio Cunha; Eizirik, Eduardo; Aide, T Mitchell; Cruz, Paula; Perilli, Miriam L L; Souza, Andiara S M C; Quiroga, Verónica; Nakano, Eduardo; Ramírez Pinto, Fredy; Fernández, Sixto; Costa, Sebastian; Moraes, Edsel A; Azevedo, Fernando

    2016-11-16

    The jaguar is the top predator of the Atlantic Forest (AF), which is a highly threatened biodiversity hotspot that occurs in Brazil, Paraguay and Argentina. By combining data sets from 14 research groups across the region, we determine the population status of the jaguar and propose a spatial prioritization for conservation actions. About 85% of the jaguar's habitat in the AF has been lost and only 7% remains in good condition. Jaguars persist in around 2.8% of the region, and live in very low densities in most of the areas. The population of jaguars in the AF is probably lower than 300 individuals scattered in small sub-populations. We identified seven Jaguar Conservation Units (JCUs) and seven potential JCUs, and only three of these areas may have ≥50 individuals. A connectivity analysis shows that most of the JCUs are isolated. Habitat loss and fragmentation were the major causes for jaguar decline, but human induced mortality is the main threat for the remaining population. We classified areas according to their contribution to jaguar conservation and we recommend management actions for each of them. The methodology in this study could be used for conservation planning of other carnivore species.

  12. Energy conservation and efficiency in manufacturing: Employee decisions and actions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Corson, Marla D.

    Energy conservation and intensity reduction efforts are becoming increasingly more prevalent and ultimately necessary, especially for energy-intensive manufacturing companies in particular to stay in business. Typical actions are to change technology, and thus, realize an energy cost savings in overall utilities. However, in today's competitive market, with climate change and other environmental impacts as well, it is necessary for the cost of energy to be valued as a cost of making a product, and thus, managed at the same level as the cost of labor or materials. This research assessed human behavior at the individual and organizational levels both at work and at home that either prompted or prohibited employees from taking daily action to conserve energy or develop greater energy efficient practices. Ultimately, the questions began with questions regarding employee views and knowledge of energy at work and at home and what drives both behaviors toward conservation or efficiency. And, the contribution identifies the key drivers, barriers, and/or incentives that affect those behaviors. The results of this study show that the key driver and motivator for energy conservation both at home and work is cost savings. The study showed that to further motivate individuals to conserve energy at home and work, more knowledge of the impact their actions have or could have as well as tools would be needed. The most poinient aspect of the research was the level of importance placed on energy conservation and the desire to conserve. The feedback given to the open ended questions was quite impressive regarding what employees have done and continue to do particularly within their homes to conserve energy. These findings brought about final recommendations that were in fact not expected but could significantly influence an increase in energy conservation at work by leveraging the existing desire to conserve which is a key component to decision making.

  13. Interactions between a Trawl Fishery and Spatial Closures for Biodiversity Conservation in the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area, Australia

    PubMed Central

    Grech, Alana; Coles, Rob

    2011-01-01

    Background The Queensland East Coast Otter Trawl Fishery (ECOTF) for penaeid shrimp fishes within Australia's Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area (GBRWHA). The past decade has seen the implementation of conservation and fisheries management strategies to reduce the impact of the ECOTF on the seabed and improve biodiversity conservation. New information from electronic vessel location monitoring systems (VMS) provides an opportunity to review the interactions between the ECOTF and spatial closures for biodiversity conservation. Methodology and Results We used fishing metrics and spatial information on the distribution of closures and modelled VMS data in a geographical information system (GIS) to assess change in effort of the trawl fishery from 2001–2009 and to quantify the exposure of 70 reef, non-reef and deep water bioregions to trawl fishing. The number of trawlers and the number of days fished almost halved between 2001 and 2009 and new spatial closures introduced in 2004 reduced the area zoned available for trawl fishing by 33%. However, we found that there was only a relatively minor change in the spatial footprint of the fishery as a result of new spatial closures. Non-reef bioregions benefited the most from new spatial closures followed by deep and reef bioregions. Conclusions/Significance Although the catch of non target species remains an issue of concern for fisheries management, the small spatial footprint of the ECOTF relative to the size of the GBRWHA means that the impact on benthic habitats is likely to be negligible. The decline in effort as a result of fishing industry structural adjustment, increasing variable costs and business decisions of fishers is likely to continue a trend to fish only in the most productive areas. This will provide protection for most benthic habitats without any further legislative or management intervention. PMID:21695155

  14. How can a knowledge of the past help to conserve the future? Biodiversity conservation and the relevance of long-term ecological studies.

    PubMed

    Willis, Katherine J; Araújo, Miguel B; Bennett, Keith D; Figueroa-Rangel, Blanca; Froyd, Cynthia A; Myers, Norman

    2007-02-28

    This paper evaluates how long-term records could and should be utilized in conservation policy and practice. Traditionally, there has been an extremely limited use of long-term ecological records (greater than 50 years) in biodiversity conservation. There are a number of reasons why such records tend to be discounted, including a perception of poor scale of resolution in both time and space, and the lack of accessibility of long temporal records to non-specialists. Probably more important, however, is the perception that even if suitable temporal records are available, their roles are purely descriptive, simply demonstrating what has occurred before in Earth's history, and are of little use in the actual practice of conservation. This paper asks why this is the case and whether there is a place for the temporal record in conservation management. Key conservation initiatives related to extinctions, identification of regions of greatest diversity/threat, climate change and biological invasions are addressed. Examples of how a temporal record can add information that is of direct practicable applicability to these issues are highlighted. These include (i) the identification of species at the end of their evolutionary lifespan and therefore most at risk from extinction, (ii) the setting of realistic goals and targets for conservation 'hotspots', and (iii) the identification of various management tools for the maintenance/restoration of a desired biological state. For climate change conservation strategies, the use of long-term ecological records in testing the predictive power of species envelope models is highlighted, along with the potential of fossil records to examine the impact of sea-level rise. It is also argued that a long-term perspective is essential for the management of biological invasions, not least in determining when an invasive is not an invasive. The paper concludes that often inclusion of a long-term ecological perspective can provide a more

  15. Reconciling Agricultural Needs with Biodiversity and Carbon Conservation in a Savanna Transformation Frontier

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Spiegel, M. P.; Estes, L. D.; Caylor, K. K.; Searchinger, T.

    2015-12-01

    Zambia is a major hotspot for agricultural development in the African savannas, which will be targeted for agricultural expansion to relieve food shortages and economic insecurity in the next few decades. Recent scholarship rejects the assumption that the large reserves of arable land in the African savannas could be converted to cropland with low ecological costs. In light of these findings, the selection of land for agricultural expansion must consider not only its potential productivity, but also the increase in greenhouse gas emissions and biodiversity loss that would result from the land conversion. To examine these tradeoffs, we have developed a multi-objective optimization technique to seek scenarios for agricultural development in Zambia that simultaneously achieve production targets and minimize carbon, biodiversity, and economic cost constraints, while factoring in the inter-annual variability in crop production in this highly uncertain climate. Potential production is determined from well-characterized yield potential estimates while robust metrics of biodiversity and high resolution mapping of carbon storage provide fine scale estimates of ecological impact. We draw production targets for individual crops from potential development pathways, primarily export, commodity-crop driven expansion and identify ecologically responsible agricultural development scenarios that are resilient to climate change and meet these demands. In order to achieve a doubling of production of nine key crops, assuming a modest 20% overall increase in yield potential, we find a range of scenarios that use less than 1600 km2 of new land without infringing on any protected areas or exceeding 6.7 million tons of carbon emissions.

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

    PubMed

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

    2014-08-01

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

  17. Trade-offs between biodiversity conservation and economic development in five tropical forest landscapes.

    PubMed

    Sandker, Marieke; Ruiz-Perez, Manuel; Campbell, Bruce M

    2012-10-01

    This study explores how conservation and development are interlinked and quantifies their reciprocal trade-offs. It identifies interventions which hold a promise to improve both conservation and development outcomes. The study finds that development trajectories can either be at the cost of conservation or can benefit conservation, but in all cases sustained poverty negatively affects conservation in the long term. Most scenarios with better outcomes for conservation come at a cost for development and the financial benefits of payments for environmental services (PES) are not sufficient to compensate for lost opportunities to earn cash. However, implementation of strategies for reducing emissions from deforestation and forest degradation in locations with low population densities come close to overcoming opportunity costs. Environmental services and subsistence income enhance the attractiveness of conservation scenarios to local people and in situations where these benefits are obvious, PES may provide the extra cash incentive to tip the balance in favor of such a scenario. The paper stresses the importance of external factors (such as industrial investments and the development of the national economy) in determining landscape scale outcomes, and suggests a negotiating and visioning role for conservation agencies.

  18. Trade-Offs Between Biodiversity Conservation and Economic Development in Five Tropical Forest Landscapes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sandker, Marieke; Ruiz-Perez, Manuel; Campbell, Bruce M.

    2012-10-01

    This study explores how conservation and development are interlinked and quantifies their reciprocal trade-offs. It identifies interventions which hold a promise to improve both conservation and development outcomes. The study finds that development trajectories can either be at the cost of conservation or can benefit conservation, but in all cases sustained poverty negatively affects conservation in the long term. Most scenarios with better outcomes for conservation come at a cost for development and the financial benefits of payments for environmental services (PES) are not sufficient to compensate for lost opportunities to earn cash. However, implementation of strategies for reducing emissions from deforestation and forest degradation in locations with low population densities come close to overcoming opportunity costs. Environmental services and subsistence income enhance the attractiveness of conservation scenarios to local people and in situations where these benefits are obvious, PES may provide the extra cash incentive to tip the balance in favor of such a scenario. The paper stresses the importance of external factors (such as industrial investments and the development of the national economy) in determining landscape scale outcomes, and suggests a negotiating and visioning role for conservation agencies.

  19. Predaceous water beetles (Coleoptera, Hydradephaga) of the Lake St Lucia system, South Africa: biodiversity, community ecology and conservation implications.

    PubMed

    Perissinotto, Renzo; Bird, Matthew S; Bilton, David T

    2016-01-01

    Water beetles are one of the dominant macroinvertebrate groups in inland waters and are excellent ecological indicators, reflecting both the diversity and composition of the wider aquatic community. The predaceous water beetles (Hydradephaga) make up around one-third of known aquatic Coleoptera and, as predators, are a key group in the functioning of many aquatic habitats. Despite being relatively well-known taxonomically, ecological studies of these insects in tropical and subtropical systems remain rare. A dedicated survey of the hydradephagan beetles of the Lake St Lucia wetlands (South Africa) was undertaken between 2013 and 2015, providing the first biodiversity census for this important aquatic group in the iSimangaliso Wetland Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site within the Maputaland biodiversity hotspot. A total of 32 sites covering the entire spectrum of waterbody types were sampled over the course of three collecting trips. The Lake St Lucia wetlands support at least 68 species of Hydradephaga, a very high level of diversity comparing favourably with other hotspots on the African continent and elsewhere in the world and a number of taxa are reported for South Africa for the first time. This beetle assemblage is dominated by relatively widespread Afrotropical taxa, with few locally endemic species, supporting earlier observations that hotspots of species richness and centres of endemism are not always coincident. Although there was no significant difference in the number of species supported by the various waterbody types sampled, sites with the highest species richness were mostly temporary depression wetlands. This contrasts markedly with the distribution of other taxa in the same system, such as molluscs and dragonflies, which are most diverse in permanent waters. Our study is the first to highlight the importance of temporary depression wetlands and emphasises the need to maintain a variety of wetland habitats for aquatic conservation in this biodiverse

  20. Predaceous water beetles (Coleoptera, Hydradephaga) of the Lake St Lucia system, South Africa: biodiversity, community ecology and conservation implications

    PubMed Central

    Perissinotto, Renzo; Bird, Matthew S.; Bilton, David T.

    2016-01-01

    Abstract Water beetles are one of the dominant macroinvertebrate groups in inland waters and are excellent ecological indicators, reflecting both the diversity and composition of the wider aquatic community. The predaceous water beetles (Hydradephaga) make up around one-third of known aquatic Coleoptera and, as predators, are a key group in the functioning of many aquatic habitats. Despite being relatively well-known taxonomically, ecological studies of these insects in tropical and subtropical systems remain rare. A dedicated survey of the hydradephagan beetles of the Lake St Lucia wetlands (South Africa) was undertaken between 2013 and 2015, providing the first biodiversity census for this important aquatic group in the iSimangaliso Wetland Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site within the Maputaland biodiversity hotspot. A total of 32 sites covering the entire spectrum of waterbody types were sampled over the course of three collecting trips. The Lake St Lucia wetlands support at least 68 species of Hydradephaga, a very high level of diversity comparing favourably with other hotspots on the African continent and elsewhere in the world and a number of taxa are reported for South Africa for the first time. This beetle assemblage is dominated by relatively widespread Afrotropical taxa, with few locally endemic species, supporting earlier observations that hotspots of species richness and centres of endemism are not always coincident. Although there was no significant difference in the number of species supported by the various waterbody types sampled, sites with the highest species richness were mostly temporary depression wetlands. This contrasts markedly with the distribution of other taxa in the same system, such as molluscs and dragonflies, which are most diverse in permanent waters. Our study is the first to highlight the importance of temporary depression wetlands and emphasises the need to maintain a variety of wetland habitats for aquatic conservation in this

  1. Efficiency and equity in land conservation: the effects of policy scale.

    PubMed

    Ay, Jean-Sauveur; Napoléone, Claude

    2013-11-15

    This paper studies the effects of policy scale for land conservation schemes based on global objectives but implemented at local levels. They are explored in the classical reserve site selection framework for policy efficiency, to which we add the common social objective of equity between spatial units. We first analyze the role of the biophysical attributes of land available for conservation. These natural endowments are then combined with different implementation scales to improve a particular land-based social function: natural habitats for biodiversity. An empirical illustration, based on data from the Provence region of France, is used to explore what we identify as a policy scale trade-off between administrative units. This shows the importance of land availability in predicting the distribution of the costs and benefits of conservation schemes. In terms of equity, we find an interior solution that minimizes an inequality metric (the Gini coefficient) along policy scales. Our approach should lead to more socially acceptable conservation objectives, between the usual two extreme cases of autarky and specialization. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  2. Land-sharing versus land-sparing logging: reconciling timber extraction with biodiversity conservation.

    PubMed

    Edwards, David P; Gilroy, James J; Woodcock, Paul; Edwards, Felicity A; Larsen, Trond H; Andrews, David J R; Derhé, Mia A; Docherty, Teegan D S; Hsu, Wayne W; Mitchell, Simon L; Ota, Takahiro; Williams, Leah J; Laurance, William F; Hamer, Keith C; Wilcove, David S

    2014-01-01

    Selective logging is a major driver of rainforest degradation across the tropics. Two competing logging strategies are proposed to meet timber demands with the least impact on biodiversity: land sharing, which combines timber extraction with biodiversity protection across the concession; and land sparing, in which higher intensity logging is combined with the protection of intact primary forest reserves. We evaluate these strategies by comparing the abundances and species richness of birds, dung beetles and ants in Borneo, using a protocol that allows us to control for both timber yield and net profit across strategies. Within each taxonomic group, more species had higher abundances with land-sparing than land-sharing logging, and this translated into significantly higher species richness within land-sparing concessions. Our results are similar when focusing only on species found in primary forest and restricted in range to Sundaland, and they are independent of the scale of sampling. For each taxonomic group, land-sparing logging was the most promising strategy for maximizing the biological value of logging operations. © 2013 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  3. A rapid multi-disciplinary biodiversity assessment of the Kamdebooberge (Sneeuberg, Eastern Cape, South Africa): implications for conservation.

    PubMed

    Clark, Vincent R; Perera, Sandun J; Stiller, Michael; Stirton, Charles H; Weston, Peter H; Stoev, Pavel; Coombs, Gareth; Morris, Dale B; Ratnayake-Perera, Dayani; Barker, Nigel P; McGregor, Gillian K

    2012-12-01

    Botanical work since 2008 on the Sleeping Giant section of the Kamdebooberge (Sneeuberg mountain complex, Eastern Cape, South Africa) has indicated that these mountains may be of significant conservation value. Accordingly, a precursory, rapid multi-disciplinary biodiversity assessment was undertaken in January 2011, focusing on plants, tetrapod vertebrates and leafhoppers. The botanical results confirm the Kamdebooberge as being of high botanical conservation value, hosting three strict endemics, healthy populations of five other Sneeuberg endemics, and fynbos communities comprising species not found elsewhere in the Sneeuberg. The Kamdebooberge are important for herpetofauna (excluding serpentoids) and mammals, hosting several range-restricted and regional endemics. The expedition uncovered three new leafhopper species, together with several species previously only known from the Cape Floristic Region. Further detailed faunal work may provide further interesting results from these mountains, which show a high conservation value unique to the southern Escarpment. The online version of this article (doi:10.1186/2193-1801-1-56) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.

  4. A National Approach to Quantify and Map Biodiversity Conservation Metrics within an Ecosystem Services Framework

    EPA Science Inventory

    Ecosystem services, i.e., "services provided to humans from natural systems," have become a key issue of this century in resource management, conservation planning, human well-being, and environmental decision analysis. Mapping and quantifying ecosystem services have be...

  5. A National Approach to Quantify and Map Biodiversity Conservation Metrics within an Ecosystem Services Framework

    EPA Science Inventory

    Ecosystem services, i.e., "services provided to humans from natural systems," have become a key issue of this century in resource management, conservation planning, human well-being, and environmental decision analysis. Mapping and quantifying ecosystem services have be...

  6. Long-Term Impacts of Forest Ditching on Non-Aquatic Biodiversity: Conservation Perspectives for a Novel Ecosystem

    PubMed Central

    Remm, Liina; Lõhmus, Piret; Leis, Mare; Lõhmus, Asko

    2013-01-01

    Artificial drainage (ditching) is widely used to increase timber yield in northern forests. When the drainage systems are maintained, their environmental impacts are likely to accumulate over time and along accompanying management, notably after logging when new forest develops on decayed peat. Our study provides the first comprehensive documentation of long-term ditching impacts on terrestrial and arboreal biodiversity by comparing natural alder swamps and second-generation drained forests that have evolved from such swamps in Estonia. We explored species composition of four potentially drainage-sensitive taxonomic groups (vascular plants, bryophytes, lichens, and snails), abundance of species of conservation concern, and their relationships with stand structure in two-ha plots representing four management types (ranging from old growth to clearcut). We found that drainage affected plot-scale species richness only weakly but it profoundly changed assemblage composition. Bryophytes and lichens were the taxonomic groups that were most sensitive both to drainage and timber-harvesting; in closed stands they responded to changed microhabitat structure, notably impoverished tree diversity and dead-wood supply. As a result, natural old-growth plots were the most species-rich and hosted several specific species of conservation concern. Because the most influential structural changes are slow, drainage impacts may be long hidden. The results also indicated that even very old drained stands do not provide quality habitats for old-growth species of drier forest types. However, drained forests hosted many threatened species that were less site type specific, including early-successional vascular plants and snails on clearcuts and retention cuts, and bryophytes and lichens of successional and old forests. We conclude that three types of specific science-based management tools are needed to mitigate ditching effects on forest biodiversity: (i) silvicultural techniques to

  7. Is Active Management the Key to the Conservation of Saproxylic Biodiversity? Pollarding Promotes the Formation of Tree Hollows

    PubMed Central

    Sebek, Pavel; Altman, Jan; Platek, Michal; Cizek, Lukas

    2013-01-01

    Trees with hollows are key features sustaining biodiversity in wooded landscapes. They host rich assemblages of often highly specialised organisms. Hollow trees, however, have become rare and localised in Europe. Many of the associated biota is thus declining or endangered. The challenge of its conservation, therefore, is to safeguard the presence of hollow trees in sufficient numbers. Populations of numerous species associated with tree hollows and dead wood are often found in habitats that were formed by formerly common traditional silvicultural practices such as coppicing, pollarding or pasture. Although it has been occasionally mentioned that such practices increase the formation of hollows and the availability of often sun-exposed dead wood, their effect has never been quantified. Our study examined the hollow incidence in pollard and non-pollard (unmanaged) willows and the effect of pollarding on incremental growth rate by tree ring analysis. The probability of hollow occurrence was substantially higher in pollard than in non-pollard trees. Young pollards, especially, form hollows much more often than non-pollards; for instance, in trees of 50 cm DBH, the probability of hollow ocurrence was ∼0.75 in pollards, but only ∼0.3 in non-pollards. No difference in growth rate was found. Pollarding thus leads to the rapid formation of tree hollows, a habitat usually associated with old trees. It is therefore potentially a very important tool in the restoration of saproxylic habitats and conservation of hollow-dependent fauna. If applied along e.g. roads and watercourses, pollarding could also be used to increase landscape connectivity for saproxylic organisms. In reserves where pollarding was formerly practiced, its restoration would be necessary to prevent loss of saproxylic biodiversity. Our results point to the importance of active management measures for maintaining availability, and spatial and temporal continuity of deadwood microhabitats. PMID:23544142

  8. Long-term impacts of forest ditching on non-aquatic biodiversity: conservation perspectives for a novel ecosystem.

    PubMed

    Remm, Liina; Lõhmus, Piret; Leis, Mare; Lõhmus, Asko

    2013-01-01

    Artificial drainage (ditching) is widely used to increase timber yield in northern forests. When the drainage systems are maintained, their environmental impacts are likely to accumulate over time and along accompanying management, notably after logging when new forest develops on decayed peat. Our study provides the first comprehensive documentation of long-term ditching impacts on terrestrial and arboreal biodiversity by comparing natural alder swamps and second-generation drained forests that have evolved from such swamps in Estonia. We explored species composition of four potentially drainage-sensitive taxonomic groups (vascular plants, bryophytes, lichens, and snails), abundance of species of conservation concern, and their relationships with stand structure in two-ha plots representing four management types (ranging from old growth to clearcut). We found that drainage affected plot-scale species richness only weakly but it profoundly changed assemblage composition. Bryophytes and lichens were the taxonomic groups that were most sensitive both to drainage and timber-harvesting; in closed stands they responded to changed microhabitat structure, notably impoverished tree diversity and dead-wood supply. As a result, natural old-growth plots were the most species-rich and hosted several specific species of conservation concern. Because the most influential structural changes are slow, drainage impacts may be long hidden. The results also indicated that even very old drained stands do not provide quality habitats for old-growth species of drier forest types. However, drained forests hosted many threatened species that were less site type specific, including early-successional vascular plants and snails on clearcuts and retention cuts, and bryophytes and lichens of successional and old forests. We conclude that three types of specific science-based management tools are needed to mitigate ditching effects on forest biodiversity: (i) silvicultural techniques to

  9. Observational natural history and morphological taxonomy are indispensable for future challenges in biodiversity and conservation

    PubMed Central

    Staab, Michael; Ohl, Michael; Zhu, Chao-Dong; Klein, Alexandra-Maria

    2015-01-01

    Global biodiversity is rapidly declining, leading inevitably to a loss of ecosystem functionality when species and their associated life-history traits vanish. Unfortunately, even in the 21st century, a large proportion of Earth's species are yet unknown and also for most described species science lacks a deeper understanding of the functional role of species and thus of ecosystems. In this Addendum we use the recent discovery of a new spider wasp with a unique natural history as an example to emphasize the importance to conduct basic observational natural history and traditional taxonomic research. We aim to encourage such ‘old-fashioned’ research and biologists from various research fields to report the many fascinating phenomena holding valuable natural history information they may encounter. Such detailed knowledge on species, their life-history traits, and their trophic interactions will be crucial to reliably address the challenges global change brings to the persistence of ecosystems. PMID:26845677

  10. Reconciling food production and biodiversity conservation: land sharing and land sparing compared.

    PubMed

    Phalan, Ben; Onial, Malvika; Balmford, Andrew; Green, Rhys E

    2011-09-02

    The question of how to meet rising food demand at the least cost to biodiversity requires the evaluation of two contrasting alternatives: land sharing, which integrates both objectives on the same land; and land sparing, in which high-yield farming is combined with protecting natural habitats from conversion to agriculture. To test these alternatives, we compared crop yields and densities of bird and tree species across gradients of agricultural intensity in southwest Ghana and northern India. More species were negatively affected by agriculture than benefited from it, particularly among species with small global ranges. For both taxa in both countries, land sparing is a more promising strategy for minimizing negative impacts of food production, at both current and anticipated future levels of production.

  11. Observational natural history and morphological taxonomy are indispensable for future challenges in biodiversity and conservation.

    PubMed

    Staab, Michael; Ohl, Michael; Zhu, Chao-Dong; Klein, Alexandra-Maria

    2015-01-01

    Global biodiversity is rapidly declining, leading inevitably to a loss of ecosystem functionality when species and their associated life-history traits vanish. Unfortunately, even in the 21(st) century, a large proportion of Earth's species are yet unknown and also for most described species science lacks a deeper understanding of the functional role of species and thus of ecosystems. In this Addendum we use the recent discovery of a new spider wasp with a unique natural history as an example to emphasize the importance to conduct basic observational natural history and traditional taxonomic research. We aim to encourage such 'old-fashioned' research and biologists from various research fields to report the many fascinating phenomena holding valuable natural history information they may encounter. Such detailed knowledge on species, their life-history traits, and their trophic interactions will be crucial to reliably address the challenges global change brings to the persistence of ecosystems.

  12. Connectivity, biodiversity conservation and the design of marine reserve networks for coral reefs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Almany, G. R.; Connolly, S. R.; Heath, D. D.; Hogan, J. D.; Jones, G. P.; McCook, L. J.; Mills, M.; Pressey, R. L.; Williamson, D. H.

    2009-06-01

    Networks of no-take reserves are important for protecting coral reef biodiversity from climate change and other human impacts. Ensuring that reserve populations are connected to each other and non-reserve populations by larval dispersal allows for recovery from disturbance and is a key aspect of resilience. In general, connectivity between reserves should increase as the distance between them decreases. However, enhancing connectivity may often tradeoff against a network’s ability to representatively sample the system’s natural variability. This “representation” objective is typically measured in terms of species richness or diversity of habitats, but has other important elements (e.g., minimizing the risk that multiple reserves will be impacted by catastrophic events). Such representation objectives tend to be better achieved as reserves become more widely spaced. Thus, optimizing the location, size and spacing of reserves requires both an understanding of larval dispersal and explicit consideration of how well the network represents the broader system; indeed the lack of an integrated theory for optimizing tradeoffs between connectivity and representation objectives has inhibited the incorporation of connectivity into reserve selection algorithms. This article addresses these issues by (1) updating general recommendations for the location, size and spacing of reserves based on emerging data on larval dispersal in corals and reef fishes, and on considerations for maintaining genetic diversity; (2) using a spatial analysis of the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park to examine potential tradeoffs between connectivity and representation of biodiversity and (3) describing a framework for incorporating environmental fluctuations into the conceptualization of the tradeoff between connectivity and representation, and that expresses both in a common, demographically meaningful currency, thus making optimization possible.

  13. Plant management and biodiversity conservation in Náhuatl homegardens of the Tehuacán Valley, Mexico.

    PubMed

    Larios, Carolina; Casas, Alejandro; Vallejo, Mariana; Moreno-Calles, Ana Isabel; Blancas, José

    2013-11-06

    The Tehuacán Valley is one of the areas of Mesoamerica with the oldest history of plant management. Homegardens are among the most ancient management systems that currently provide economic benefits to people and are reservoirs of native biodiversity. Previous studies estimated that 30% of the plant richness of homegardens of the region are native plant species from wild populations. We studied in Náhuatl communities the proportion of native plant species maintained in homegardens, hypothesizing to find a proportion similar to that estimated at regional level, mainly plant resources maintained for edible, medicinal and ornamental purposes. We analysed the composition of plant species of homegardens and their similarity with surrounding Cloud Forest (CF), Tropical Rainforest (TRF), Tropical Dry forest (TDF), and Thorn-Scrub Forest (TSF). We determined density, frequency and biomass of plant species composing homegardens and forests through vegetation sampling of a total of 30 homegardens and nine plots of forests, and documented ethnobotanical information on use, management, and economic benefits from plants maintained in homegardens. A total of 281 plant species was recorded with 12 use categories, 115 ornamental, 92 edible, and 50 medicinal plant species. We recorded 49.8 ± 23.2 (average ± S.D.) woody plant species (shrubs and trees) per homegarden. In total, 34% species are native to the Tehuacán Valley and nearly 16% are components of the surrounding forests. A total of 176 species were cultivated through seeds, vegetative propagules or transplanted entire individual plants, 71 tolerated, and 23 enhanced. The highest species richness and diversity were recorded in homegardens from the CF zone (199 species), followed by those from the TRF (157) and those from the TDF (141) zones. Homegardens provide a high diversity of resources for subsistence of local households and significantly contribute to conservation of native biodiversity. The highest diversity was

  14. Plant management and biodiversity conservation in Náhuatl homegardens of the Tehuacán Valley, Mexico

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background The Tehuacán Valley is one of the areas of Mesoamerica with the oldest history of plant management. Homegardens are among the most ancient management systems that currently provide economic benefits to people and are reservoirs of native biodiversity. Previous studies estimated that 30% of the plant richness of homegardens of the region are native plant species from wild populations. We studied in Náhuatl communities the proportion of native plant species maintained in homegardens, hypothesizing to find a proportion similar to that estimated at regional level, mainly plant resources maintained for edible, medicinal and ornamental purposes. Methods We analysed the composition of plant species of homegardens and their similarity with surrounding Cloud Forest (CF), Tropical Rainforest (TRF), Tropical Dry forest (TDF), and Thorn-Scrub Forest (TSF). We determined density, frequency and biomass of plant species composing homegardens and forests through vegetation sampling of a total of 30 homegardens and nine plots of forests, and documented ethnobotanical information on use, management, and economic benefits from plants maintained in homegardens. Results A total of 281 plant species was recorded with 12 use categories, 115 ornamental, 92 edible, and 50 medicinal plant species. We recorded 49.8 ± 23.2 (average ± S.D.) woody plant species (shrubs and trees) per homegarden. In total, 34% species are native to the Tehuacán Valley and nearly 16% are components of the surrounding forests. A total of 176 species were cultivated through seeds, vegetative propagules or transplanted entire individual plants, 71 tolerated, and 23 enhanced. The highest species richness and diversity were recorded in homegardens from the CF zone (199 species), followed by those from the TRF (157) and those from the TDF (141) zones. Conclusion Homegardens provide a high diversity of resources for subsistence of local households and significantly contribute to conservation of native

  15. Seventy-one important questions for the conservation of marine biodiversity.

    PubMed

    Parsons, E C M; Favaro, Brett; Aguirre, A Alonso; Bauer, Amy L; Blight, Louise K; Cigliano, John A; Coleman, Melinda A; Côté, Isabelle M; Draheim, Megan; Fletcher, Stephen; Foley, Melissa M; Jefferson, Rebecca; Jones, Miranda C; Kelaher, Brendan P; Lundquist, Carolyn J; McCarthy, Julie-Beth; Nelson, Anne; Patterson, Katheryn; Walsh, Leslie; Wright, Andrew J; Sutherland, William J

    2014-10-01

    The ocean provides food, economic activity, and cultural value for a large proportion of humanity. Our knowledge of marine ecosystems lags behind that of terrestrial ecosystems, limiting effective protection of marine resources. We describe the outcome of 2 workshops in 2011 and 2012 to establish a list of important questions, which, if answered, would substantially improve our ability to conserve and manage the world's marine resources. Participants included individuals from academia, government, and nongovernment organizations with broad experience across disciplines, marine ecosystems, and countries that vary in levels of development. Contributors from the fields of science, conservation, industry, and government submitted questions to our workshops, which we distilled into a list of priority research questions. Through this process, we identified 71 key questions. We grouped these into 8 subject categories, each pertaining to a broad component of marine conservation: fisheries, climate change, other anthropogenic threats, ecosystems, marine citizenship, policy, societal and cultural considerations, and scientific enterprise. Our questions address many issues that are specific to marine conservation, and will serve as a road map to funders and researchers to develop programs that can greatly benefit marine conservation.

  16. Ohio Aquatic Gap Analysis-An Assessment of the Biodiversity and Conservation Status of Native Aquatic Animal Species

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Covert, S. Alex; Kula, Stephanie P.; Simonson, Laura A.

    2007-01-01

    The goal of the GAP Analysis Program is to keep common species common by identifying those species and habitats that are not yet adequately represented in the existing matrix of conservation lands. The Gap Analysis Program (GAP) is sponsored by the Biological Resources Discipline of the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS). The Ohio Aquatic GAP (OH-GAP) is a pilot project that is applying the GAP concept to aquatic-specifically, riverine-data. The mission of GAP is to provide regional assessments of the conservation status of native animal species and to facilitate the application of this information to land-management activities. OH-GAP accomplished this through * mapping aquatic habitat types, * mapping the predicted distributions of fish, crayfish, and bivalves, * documenting the presence of aquatic species in areas managed for conservation, * providing GAP results to the public, planners, managers, policy makers, and researchers, and * building cooperation with multiple organizations to apply GAP results to state and regional management activities. Gap analysis is a coarse-scale assessment of aquatic biodiversity and conservation; the goal is to identify gaps in the conservation of native aquatic species. It is not a substitute for biological field studies and monitoring programs. Gap analysis was conducted for the continuously flowing streams in Ohio. Lakes, reservoirs, wetlands, and the Lake Erie islands were not included in this analysis. The streams in Ohio are in the Lake Erie and Ohio River watersheds and pass through six of the level III ecoregions defined by Omernik: the Eastern Corn Belt Plains, Southern Michigan/Northern Indiana Drift Plains, Huron/Erie Lake Plain, Erie Drift Plains, Interior Plateau, and the Western Allegheny Plateau. To characterize the aquatic habitats available to Ohio fish, crayfish, and bivalves, a classification system needed to be developed and mapped. The process of classification includes delineation of areas of relative

  17. 75 FR 30014 - Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy; Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2010-05-28

    ... designed to: Reduce fossil fuel emissions; Reduce the total energy use of the eligible entities; and... manage energy efficiency and conservation projects and programs designed to: Reduce fossil fuel emissions...

  18. Challenges and a checklist for biodiversity conservation in fire-prone forests: perspecitves from the Pacific Northwest of USA and Southeastern Australia

    Treesearch

    Thomas A. Spies; David B. Lindenmayer; A. Malcolm Gill; Scott L. Stephens; James K. Agee

    2012-01-01

    Conserving biodiversity in fire-prone forest ecosystems is challenging for several reasons including differing and incomplete conceptual models of fire-related ecological processes, major gaps in ecological and management knowledge, high variability in fire behavior and ecological responses to fires, altered fire regimes as a result of land-use history and climate...

  19. Conserving forest biodiversity across multiple land ownerships: lessons from the Northwest Forest Plan and the Southeast Queensland Regional Forests Agreement (Australia).

    Treesearch

    C.A. McAlpine; T.A. Spies; P. Norman; A. Peterson

    2007-01-01

    As the area of the world's forests shrinks, the management of production forests is becoming increasingly paramount for biodiversity conservation. In the United States and Australia, public debate and controversy about the management of production forests during the later decades of the 20th century resulted in governments adopting sweeping top-down changes to...

  20. The efficiency of payments for environmental services in tropical conservation.

    PubMed

    Wunder, Sven

    2007-02-01

    Payments for environmental services (PES) represent a new, more direct way to promote conservation. They explicitly recognize the need to address difficult trade-offs by bridging the interests of landowners and external actors through compensations. Theoretical assessments praise the advantages of PES over indirect approaches, but in the tropics PES application has remained incipient. Here I aim to demystify PES and clarify its scope for application as a tool for tropical conservation. I focus on the supply side of PES (i.e., how to convert PES funding into effective conservation on the ground), which until now has been widely neglected. I reviewed the PES literature for developing countries and combined these findings with observations from my own field studies in Latin America and Asia. A PES scheme, simply stated, is a voluntary, conditional agreement between at least one "seller" and one "buyer" over a well-defined environmental service--or a land use presumed to produce that service. Major obstacles to effective PES include demand-side limitations and a lack of supply-side know-how regarding implementation. The design of PES programs can be improved by explicitly outlining baselines, calculating conservation opportunity costs, customizing payment modalities, and targeting agents with credible land claims and threats to conservation. Expansion of PES can occur if schemes can demonstrate clear additionality (i.e., incremental conservation effects vis-à-vis predefined baselines), if PES recipients' livelihood dynamics are better understood, and if efficiency goals are balanced with considerations of fairness. PES are arguably best suited to scenarios of moderate conservation opportunity costs on marginal lands and in settings with emerging, not-yet realized threats. Actors who represent credible threats to the environment will more likely receive PES than those already living in harmony with nature. A PES scheme can thus benefit both buyers and sellers while

  1. The role of herbicides for enhancing productivity and conserving land for biodiversity in North America

    Treesearch

    Robert G. Wagner; Michael Newton; Elizabeth C. Cole; James H. Miller; Barry D. Shiver

    2004-01-01

    Herbicide technology has evolved with forest management in North America over the past 60 years and has become an integral part of modern forestry practice. Forest managers have prescribed herbicides to increase reforestation success and long-term timber yields. Wildlife managers and others interested in conserving biodi- versity, however, have often viewed herbicide...

  2. Adaptation approaches for conserving ecosystems services and biodiversity in dynamic landscapes caused by climate change

    Treesearch

    Oswald J. Schmitz; Anne M. Trainor

    2014-01-01

    Climate change stands to cause animal species to shift their geographic ranges. This will cause ecosystems to become reorganized across landscapes as species migrate into and out of specific locations with attendant impacts on values and services that ecosystems provide to humans. Conservation in an era of climate change needs to ensure that landscapes are resilient by...

  3. Geographic approaches to biodiversity conservation: implications of scale and error to landscape planning

    Treesearch

    Curtis H. Flather; Kenneth R. Wilson; Susan A. Shriner

    2009-01-01

    Conservation science is concerned with understanding why distribution and abundance patterns of species vary in time and space. Although these patterns have strong signatures tied to the availability of energy and nutrients, variation in climate, physiographic heterogeneity, and differences in the structural complexity of natural vegetation, it is becoming more...

  4. Application of geoinformatics for landscape assessment and conserving forest biodiversity in northeast India

    Treesearch

    Ashish Kumar; Bruce G. Marcot; Gautam Talukdar; P.S. Roy

    2012-01-01

    Herein, we summarize our work, within forest ecosystems of Garo Hills in northeast India, on mapping vegetation and land cover conditions, delineating wildlife habitat corridors among protected areas, evaluating forest conservation values of influence zones bordering protected areas, analyzing dispersion patterns of native forests, and determining potential effects of...

  5. The lower San Pedro River: hydrology and flow restoration for biodiversity conservation

    Treesearch

    Jeanmarie Haney

    2005-01-01

    The lower San Pedro River, downstream from Benson, is a nearly unfragmented habitat containing perennial flow reaches that support riparian vegetation that serve as “stepping stones” for migratory species. The Nature Conservancy has purchased farm properties and retired agricultural pumping along the lower river, based largely on results from hydrologic analyses...

  6. Cycad biodiversity in the Bahama Archipelago and conservation genetics of the Critically Endangered Zamia lucayana (Zamiaceae)

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    A conservation assessment for the three species of cycads native to the Bahamas Islands is presented. Results are based on extensive field surveys in all the islands where these species are found [Zamia angustifolia (native in Eleuthera), Z. integrifolia (native in Abaco, Andros, Eleuthera, Grand Ba...

  7. Conservation Planning for Ecosystem Services

    PubMed Central

    Chan, Kai M. A; Shaw, M. Rebecca; Cameron, David R; Underwood, Emma C; Daily, Gretchen C

    2006-01-01

    Despite increasing attention to the human dimension of conservation projects, a rigorous, systematic methodology for planning for ecosystem services has not been developed. This is in part because flows of ecosystem services remain poorly characterized at local-to-regional scales, and their protection has not generally been made a priority. We used a spatially explicit conservation planning framework to explore the trade-offs and opportunities for aligning conservation goals for biodiversity with six ecosystem services (carbon storage, flood control, forage production, outdoor recreation, crop pollination, and water provision) in the Central Coast ecoregion of California, United States. We found weak positive and some weak negative associations between the priority areas for biodiversity conservation and the flows of the six ecosystem services across the ecoregion. Excluding the two agriculture-focused services—crop pollination and forage production—eliminates all negative correlations. We compared the degree to which four contrasting conservation network designs protect biodiversity and the flow of the six services. We found that biodiversity conservation protects substantial collateral flows of services. Targeting ecosystem services directly can meet the multiple ecosystem services and biodiversity goals more efficiently but cannot substitute for targeted biodiversity protection (biodiversity losses of 44% relative to targeting biodiversity alone). Strategically targeting only biodiversity plus the four positively associated services offers much promise (relative biodiversity losses of 7%). Here we present an initial analytical framework for integrating biodiversity and ecosystem services in conservation planning and illustrate its application. We found that although there are important potential trade-offs between conservation for biodiversity and for ecosystem services, a systematic planning framework offers scope for identifying valuable synergies. PMID

  8. Is Rich and Rare the Common Share? Describing Biodiversity Patterns to Inform Conservation Practices for South American Anurans

    PubMed Central

    Villalobos, Fabricio; Dobrovolski, Ricardo; Provete, Diogo B.; Gouveia, Sidney F.

    2013-01-01

    Species richness and range size are key features of biogeographic and macroecological analyses, which can yield a first assessment tool to define conservation priorities. Here we combined both features in a simultaneous analysis, based on range-diversity plots, to identify sets of rich-rare (high species richness with restricted ranges) and poor-rare cells (low species richness with restricted ranges). We applied this analysis to the anurans of South America and evaluated the representation of those sets of cells within the protected area system. South American anurans showed high species richness in the Brazilian Atlantic Forest and East Tropical Andes, while regions harboring most of the rare species were concentrated in the Andes and Atlantic Coast from North-Eastern Brazil to River Plate. Based on such patterns, we identified as rich-rare cells the Brazilian Atlantic Forest and Tropical Andes and as poor-rare cells the southern part of Andes and Uruguay. A low fraction of both sets of cells was represented within the protected area system. We show that a simultaneous consideration of species richness and rarity provides a rapid assessment of large-scale biodiversity patterns and may contribute to the definition of conservation priorities. PMID:23409124

  9. Is rich and rare the common share? Describing biodiversity patterns to inform conservation practices for South American anurans.

    PubMed

    Villalobos, Fabricio; Dobrovolski, Ricardo; Provete, Diogo B; Gouveia, Sidney F

    2013-01-01

    Species richness and range size are key features of biogeographic and macroecological analyses, which can yield a first assessment tool to define conservation priorities. Here we combined both features in a simultaneous analysis, based on range-diversity plots, to identify sets of rich-rare (high species richness with restricted ranges) and poor-rare cells (low species richness with restricted ranges). We applied this analysis to the anurans of South America and evaluated the representation of those sets of cells within the protected area system. South American anurans showed high species richness in the Brazilian Atlantic Forest and East Tropical Andes, while regions harboring most of the rare species were concentrated in the Andes and Atlantic Coast from North-Eastern Brazil to River Plate. Based on such patterns, we identified as rich-rare cells the Brazilian Atlantic Forest and Tropical Andes and as poor-rare cells the southern part of Andes and Uruguay. A low fraction of both sets of cells was represented within the protected area system. We show that a simultaneous consideration of species richness and rarity provides a rapid assessment of large-scale biodiversity patterns and may contribute to the definition of conservation priorities.

  10. A Review of the Implications of Heterozygosity and Inbreeding on Germplasm Biodiversity and Its Conservation in the Silkworm, Bombyx mori

    PubMed Central

    Jingade, A.H.; Vijayan, K.; Somasundaram, P.; Srivasababu, G.K.; Kamble, C.K.

    2011-01-01

    Silkworm genebanks assume paramount importance as the reservoirs of biodiversity and source of alleles that can be easily retrieved for genetic enhancement of popular breeds. More than 4000 Bombyx mori L (Lepidoptera: Bombycidae) strains are currently available and these strains are maintained through continuous sibling mating. This repeated sibling mating makes the populations of each strain more homozygous, but leads to loss of unique and valuable genes through the process of inbreeding depression. Hence, it is essential to maintain a minimal degree of heterozygosity within the population of each silkworm strain, especially in the traditional geographic strains, to avoid such loss. As a result, accurate estimation of genetic diversity is becoming more important in silkworm genetic resources conservation. Application of molecular markers help estimate genetic diversity much more accurately than that of morphological traits. Since a minimal amount of heterozygosity in each silkworm strain is essential for better conservation by avoiding inbreeding depression, this article overviews both theoretical and practical importance of heterozygosity together with impacts of inbreeding depression and the merits and demerits of neutral molecular markers for measurements of both heterozygosity and inbreeding depression in the silkworm Bombyx mori. PMID:21521139

  11. A review of the implications of heterozygosity and inbreeding on germplasm biodiversity and its conservation in the silkworm, Bombyx mori.

    PubMed

    Jingade, A H; Vijayan, K; Somasundaram, P; Srivasababu, G K; Kamble, C K

    2011-01-01

    Abstract Silkworm genebanks assume paramount importance as the reservoirs of biodiversity and source of alleles that can be easily retrieved for genetic enhancement of popular breeds. More than 4000 Bombyx mori L (Lepidoptera: Bombycidae) strains are currently available and these strains are maintained through continuous sibling mating. This repeated sibling mating makes the populations of each strain more homozygous, but leads to loss of unique and valuable genes through the process of inbreeding depression. Hence, it is essential to maintain a minimal degree of heterozygosity within the population of each silkworm strain, especially in the traditional geographic strains, to avoid such loss. As a result, accurate estimation of genetic diversity is becoming more important in silkworm genetic resources conservation. Application of molecular markers help estimate genetic diversity much more accurately than that of morphological traits. Since a minimal amount of heterozygosity in each silkworm strain is essential for better conservation by avoiding inbreeding depression, this article overviews both theoretical and practical importance of heterozygosity together with impacts of inbreeding depression and the merits and demerits of neutral molecular markers for measurements of both heterozygosity and inbreeding depression in the silkworm Bombyx mori.

  12. Federal energy efficiency and water conservation funding study

    SciTech Connect

    1998-01-01

    This report contains the results of a study required by section 162 of the Energy Policy Act of 1992 (EPAct). It outlines options for financing energy and water conservation measures at Federal facilities as required by Part 3 of Title V of the National Energy Policy and Conservation Act (NECPA) (42 U.S.C. 8251 et seq.) as amended by EPAct. It addresses: (1) the estimated Federal financial investment necessary to install energy and water conservation measures to meet NECPA and Executive Order requirements; (2) the use of revolving funds and other funding mechanisms which offer stable, long-term financing of energy and water conservation measures; and (3) the means for capitalizing such funds. On March 8, 1994, President Clinton signed Executive Order 12902. This Executive Order is an aggressive mandate to improve energy efficiency and water conservation in Federal buildings nationwide. This Executive Order is designed to meet and exceed requirements for Federal energy and water efficiency that were contained in section 152 of EPAct. Section 152 mandated that Federal agencies use all cost effective measures with less than a ten year payback to reduce energy consumption in their facilities by 20% by the year 2000 compared to 1985 levels. In addition, Executive Order 12902 established a requirement to use cost effective measures to reduce energy use by fiscal year 2005 by 30% compared to 1985 energy use. This report provides estimates for the energy and water conservation investments needed to achieve the NECPA and Executive Order goals as well as estimates for the contribution from various funding sources and a review of the mechanisms for funding these investments.

  13. Psycho-social processes in dealing with legal innovation in the community: insights from biodiversity conservation.

    PubMed

    Castro, Paula; Mouro, Carla

    2011-06-01

    Mitigation measures for tackling the consequences of a changing climate will involve efforts of various types including the conservation of affected ecosystems. For this, communities throughout the world will be called on to change habits of land and water use. Many of these changes will emerge from the multilevel governance tools now commonly used for environmental protection. In this article, some tenets of a social psychology of legal innovation are proposed for approaching the psycho-social processes involved in how individuals, groups and communities respond to multilevel governance. Next, how this approach can improve our understanding of community-based conservation driven by legal innovation is highlighted. For this, the macro and micro level processes involved in the implementation of the European Natura 2000 Network of Protected Sites are examined. Finally, some insights gained from this example of multilevel governance through legal innovation will be enumerated as a contribution for future policy making aimed at dealing with climate change consequences.

  14. Trust Species and Habitat Branch: using the innovative approaches of today to conserve biodiversity for tomorrow

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Stevens, Patricia; Walters, Katie D.

    2015-01-01

    The Trust Species and Habitats Branch of the Fort Collins Science Center includes a diverse group of scientists encompassing both traditional and specialized expertise in wildlife biology, ecosystem ecology, quantitative ecology, disease ecology, molecular genetics, and stable isotope geochemistry. Using our expertise and collaborating with others around the world, our goal is to provide the information, tools, and technologies that our partners need to support conservation, management, and restoration of terrestrial vertebrate populations, habitats, and ecosystem function in a changing world.

  15. A review of climate-change adaptation strategies for wildlife management and biodiversity conservation.

    PubMed

    Mawdsley, Jonathan R; O'Malley, Robin; Ojima, Dennis S

    2009-10-01

    The scientific literature contains numerous descriptions of observed and potential effects of global climate change on species and ecosystems. In response to anticipated effects of climate change, conservation organizations and government agencies are developing "adaptation strategies" to facilitate the adjustment of human society and ecological systems to altered climate regimes. We reviewed the literature and climate-change adaptation plans that have been developed in United States, Canada, England, México, and South Africa and found 16 general adaptation strategies that relate directly to the conservation of biological diversity. These strategies can be grouped into four broad categories: land and water protection and management; direct species management; monitoring and planning; and law and policy. Tools for implementing these strategies are similar or identical to those already in use by conservationists worldwide (land and water conservation, ecological restoration, agrienvironment schemes, species translocation, captive propagation, monitoring, natural resource planning, and legislation/regulation). Although our review indicates natural resource managers already have many tools that can be used to address climate-change effects, managers will likely need to apply these tools in novel and innovative ways to meet the unprecedented challenges posed by climate change.

  16. Biodiversity effects on resource use efficiency and community turnover of plankton in Lake Nansihu, China.

    PubMed

    Tian, Wang; Zhang, Huayong; Zhang, Jian; Zhao, Lei; Miao, Mingsheng; Huang, Hai

    2017-04-01

    The relationship between biodiversity and ecosystem functioning is a central issue in ecology, especially in aquatic ecosystems due to the ecophysiological characteristics of plankton. Recently, ecologists have obtained conflicting conclusions while analyzing the influence of species diversity on plankton resource use efficiency (RUE) and community turnover. In this study, both phytoplankton and zooplankton communities were investigated seasonally from 2011 to 2013 in Lake Nansihu, a meso-eutrophic and recovering lake in China. The effects of phytoplankton diversity on RUE of phytoplankton (RUEPP), zooplankton (RUEZP), and community turnover were analyzed. Results showed that both phytoplankton species richness and evenness were positively correlated with RUEPP. RUEZP had a negative relationship with phytoplankton species richness, but a weak unimodal relationship with phytoplankton evenness. Cyanobacteria community had the opposite influence on RUEPP and RUEZP. Thus, cyanobacteria dominance will benefit RUEPP in eutrophic lakes, but the growth and reproduction of zooplankton are greatly limited. The strong negative relationship between total phosphorus and RUEZP confirmed these results. Phytoplankton community turnover tended to decrease with increasing phytoplankton evenness, which was consistent with most previous studies. The correlation coefficient between phytoplankton species richness and community turnover was negative, but not significant (p > 0.05). Therefore, phytoplankton community turnover was more sensitive to the variation of evenness than species richness. These results will be helpful in understanding the effects of species diversity on ecosystem functioning in aquatic ecosystems.

  17. Biodiversity of Mushrooms in Conservative Forest in Dansai District of Loei Province, Thailand

    PubMed Central

    Benchawattananon, Rachadaporn

    2016-01-01

    Dansai District is located in Loei Province, Northeast Thailand, rich in natural resources and composes of many kinds of forests, such as evergreen forests and mixed-deciduous forests. The objectives of the study are to determine the diversity of mushrooms and investigate the values of the forest influencing the community way of life and exploration of problems and guidelines for developing the forest along with sufficiency economy theory. The study includes compilation of data from past studies, semi-structured interview with the local communities and discussion with focus group. The survey was done once a month during the rainy season from May to August in 2012 and 2013. The results of the survey revealed 56 species belonging to 26 families, 38 genera. A total of 52 mushroom species belong to Basidiomycota, while 4 species belong to Ascomycota. The community forest remains fertile due to the conservation effort by the community leaders and a group of villagers. A community forestry board were set up to conserve the forest and proposed to the government at Dansai Vocational Community College to officially declare the forest as a formal community forest. The conservation management relied upon the kinship relations, seniority, and religious belief along with the enforcing authorities. If an encroacher is found, he would be fined according to the regulations and defamed publicly. However, encroachment still exists. In general, community forest is valuable and directly affected the villagers’ ways of life in which they could generate income from the forest, particularly reducing the daily expenses and promoting their socio-cultural perspective. PMID:27965747

  18. Biodiversity of Mushrooms in Conservative Forest in Dansai District of Loei Province, Thailand.

    PubMed

    Benchawattananon, Rachadaporn

    2016-11-01

    Dansai District is located in Loei Province, Northeast Thailand, rich in natural resources and composes of many kinds of forests, such as evergreen forests and mixed-deciduous forests. The objectives of the study are to determine the diversity of mushrooms and investigate the values of the forest influencing the community way of life and exploration of problems and guidelines for developing the forest along with sufficiency economy theory. The study includes compilation of data from past studies, semi-structured interview with the local communities and discussion with focus group. The survey was done once a month during the rainy season from May to August in 2012 and 2013. The results of the survey revealed 56 species belonging to 26 families, 38 genera. A total of 52 mushroom species belong to Basidiomycota, while 4 species belong to Ascomycota. The community forest remains fertile due to the conservation effort by the community leaders and a group of villagers. A community forestry board were set up to conserve the forest and proposed to the government at Dansai Vocational Community College to officially declare the forest as a formal community forest. The conservation management relied upon the kinship relations, seniority, and religious belief along with the enforcing authorities. If an encroacher is found, he would be fined according to the regulations and defamed publicly. However, encroachment still exists. In general, community forest is valuable and directly affected the villagers' ways of life in which they could generate income from the forest, particularly reducing the daily expenses and promoting their socio-cultural perspective.

  19. On specimen killing in the era of