Browsing by Subject "CONSERVATION"

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  • Boieiro, Mario; Matthews, Thomas J.; Rego, Carla; Crespo, Luis; Aguiar, Carlos A. S.; Cardoso, Pedro; Rigal, Francois; Silva, Isamberto; Pereira, Fernando; Borges, Paulo A. V.; Serrano, Artur R. M. (2018)
    During the last few centuries oceanic island biodiversity has been drastically modified by human-mediated activities. These changes have led to the increased homogenization of island biota and to a high number of extinctions lending support to the recognition of oceanic islands as major threatspots worldwide. Here, we investigate the impact of habitat changes on the spider and ground beetle assemblages of the native forests of Madeira (Madeira archipelago) and Terceira (Azores archipelago) and evaluate its effects on the relative contribution of rare endemics and introduced species to island biodiversity patterns. We found that the native laurel forest of Madeira supported higher species richness of spiders and ground beetles compared with Terceira, including a much larger proportion of indigenous species, particularly endemics. In Terceira, introduced species are well-represented in both terrestrial arthropod taxa and seem to thrive in native forests as shown by the analysis of species abundance distributions (SAD) and occupancy frequency distributions (OFD). Low abundance range-restricted species in Terceira are mostly introduced species dispersing from neighbouring man-made habitats while in Madeira a large number of true rare endemic species can still be found in the native laurel forest. Further, our comparative analysis shows striking differences in species richness and composition that are due to the geographical and geological particularities of the two islands, but also seem to reflect the differences in the severity of human-mediated impacts between them. The high proportion of introduced species, the virtual absence of rare native species and the finding that the SADs and OFDs of introduced species match the pattern of native species in Terceira suggest the role of man as an important driver of species diversity in oceanic islands and add evidence for an extensive and severe human-induced species loss in the native forests of Terceira.
  • Crespo, L.C.; Domenech, M; Enguídanos, A.; Malumbres-Olarte, Jagoba; Cardoso, Pedro; Moya-Larano, J; Frias-Lopez, Cristina; Macias Hernandez, Nuria Esther; de Mas, Eva; Mazzuca, Paola; Mora, E.; Opatova, Vera; Planas, Enric; Ribera, Carles; Roca-Cusachs, M.; Ruiz, D.; Sousa, Pedro; Tonzo, V.; Arnedo, M.A. (2018)
    Background A large scale semi-quantitative biodiversity assessment was conducted in white oak woodlands in areas included in the Spanish Network of National Parks, as part of a project aimed at revealing biogeographic patterns and identify biodiversity drivers. The semi-quantitative COBRA sampling protocol was conducted in sixteen 1-ha plots across six national parks using a nested design. All adult specimens were identified to species level based on morphology. Uncertain delimitations and identifications due to either limited information of diagnostic characters or conflicting taxonomy were further investigated using DNA barcode information. New information We identified 376 species belonging to 190 genera in 39 families, from the 8,521 adults found amongst the 20,539 collected specimens. Faunistic results include the discovery of 7 new species to the Iberian Peninsula, 3 new species to Spain and 11 putative new species to science. As largely expected by environmental features, the southern parks showed a higher proportion of Iberian and Mediterranean species than the northern parks, where the Palearctic elements were largely dominant. The analysis of approximately 3,200 DNA barcodes generated in the present study, corroborated and provided finer resolution to the morphologically based delimitation and identification of specimens in some taxonomically challenging families. Specifically, molecular data confirmed putative new species with diagnosable morphology, identified overlooked lineages that may constitute new species, confirmed assignment of specimens of unknown sexes to species and identified cases of misidentifications and phenotypic polymorphisms.
  • Pearce-Higgins, J. W.; Antão, L. H.; Bates, R. E.; Bowgen, K. M.; Bradshaw, C. D.; Duffield, S. J.; Ffoulkes, C.; Franco, A. M.A.; Geschke, J.; Gregory, R. D.; Harley, M. J.; Hodgson, J. A.; Jenkins, R. L.M.; Kapos, V.; Maltby, K. M.; Watts, O.; Willis, S. G.; Morecroft, M. D. (2022)
    Impacts of climate change on natural and human systems will become increasingly severe as the magnitude of climate change increases. Climate change adaptation interventions to address current and projected impacts are thus paramount. Yet, evidence on their effectiveness remains limited, highlighting the need for appropriate ecological indicators to measure progress of climate change adaptation for the natural environment. We outline conceptual, analytical, and practical challenges in developing such indicators, before proposing a framework with three process-based and two results-based indicator types to track progress in adapting to climate change. We emphasize the importance of dynamic assessment and modification over time, as new adaptation targets are set and/or as intervention actions are monitored and evaluated. Our framework and proposed indicators are flexible and widely applicable across species, habitats, and monitoring programmes, and could be accommodated within existing national or international frameworks to enable the evaluation of both large-scale policy instruments and local management interventions. We conclude by suggesting further work required to develop these indicators fully, and hope this will stimulate the use of ecological indicators to evaluate the effectiveness of policy interventions for the adaptation of the natural environment across the globe.
  • Nevalainen, Liisa; Kivila, E. Henriikka; Luoto, Tomi P.; Rantala, Marttiina V.; Van Damme, Kay (2019)
    A long hidden chydorid (Chydoridae, Cladocera) taxon, first found as fossil specimens and recently redefined as Rhynchotalona latens (Sarmaja-Korjonen et al., Hydrobiologia 436: 165-169, 2000) is investigated for its biogeography and ecology. Late Holocene sediment sequence from Lake Sylvilampi, NE Finnish Lapland, and R. latens spatial distribution in relation to limno-climatic attributes in Finland were examined. Principal component analyses of fossil cladoceran communities showed that R. latens is mostly affiliated with Alonella excisa-Alonopsis elongata-Alonella nana species pool. Generalized linear modeling of R. latens responses to limno-climatic variation indicated that it prefers acidic, mesotrophic, humic and shallow lakes with organic sediments in NE Lapland and has a north boreal-subarctic climatic affiliation. At the northern end of its geographical distribution (NE Lapland), it reproduces with abundant gamogenesis under environmental stress. The specialized taxon is a benthic detritivore and scraper and has a Holarctic northern-alpine distribution. It is a glacial relict associated with modern analogs of periglacial aquatic environments, and it occurs in semi-aquatic wetlands, lush lake littorals and clear and cold waters. Examination of chydorids as bioindicators, especially those with restricted niches, allow us to understand biodiversity responses of lake littorals under changing limno-climatic regimes.
  • Timberlake, Thomas P.; Cirtwill, Alyssa R.; Baral, Sushil C.; Bhusal, Daya R.; Devkota, Kedar; Harris-Fry, Helen A.; Kortsch, Susanne; Myers, Samuel S.; Roslin, Tomas; Saville, Naomi M.; Smith, Matthew R.; Strona, Giovanni; Memmott, Jane (2022)
    1. Smallholder farmers are some of the poorest and most food insecure people on Earth. Their high nutritional and economic reliance on home--grown produce makes them particularly vulnerable to environmental stressors such as pollinator loss or climate change which threaten agricultural productivity. Improving smallholder agriculture in a way that is environmentally sustainable and resilient to climate change is a key challenge of the 21st century. 2. Ecological intensification, whereby ecosystem services are managed to increase agricultural productivity, is a promising solution for smallholders. However, smallholder farms are complex socio-ecological systems with a range of social, ecological and environmental factors interacting to influence ecosystem service provisioning. To truly understand the functioning of a smallholder farm and identify the most effective management options to support household food and nutrition security, a holistic, systems-based understanding is required. 3. In this paper, we propose a network approach to understand, visualise and model the complex interactions occurring among wild species, crops and people on smallholder farms. Specifically, we demonstrate how networks may be used to (a) identify wild species with a key role in supporting, delivering or increasing the resilience of an ecosystem service; (b) quantify the value of an ecosystem service in a way that is relevant to the food and nutrition security of smallholders; and (c) understand the social interactions that influence the management of shared ecosystem services. 4. Using a case study based on data from rural Nepal, we demonstrate how this framework can be used to connect wild plants, pollinators and crops to key nutrients consumed by humans. This allows us to quantify the nutritional value of an ecosystem service and identify the wild plants and pollinators involved in its provision, as well as providing a framework to predict the effects of environmental change on human nutrition. 5. Our framework identifies mechanistic links between ecosystem services and the nutrients consumed by smallholder farmers and highlights social factors that may influence the management of these services. Applying this framework to smallholder farms in a range of socio-ecological contexts may provide new, sustainable and equitable solutions to smallholder food and nutrition security.
  • Howlader, Mohammad Sajid Ali; Nair, Abhilash; Merilä, Juha (2016)
    We describe a new species of frog of the genus Zakerana discovered from the urban core of Dhaka, Bangladesh, one of the most densely populated cities in the world. Although the new species is morphologically similar to the geographically proximate congeners in the Bangladeshi cricket frog group, we show that it can be distinguished from all congeners on the basis of morphological characters, advertisement calls and variation in two mitochondrial DNA genes (12S rRNA and 16S rRNA). Apart from several diagnostic differences in body proportions, the new species differs from other Zakerana species in having a flattened snout (from ventral view) projecting over the lower jaw, and diagnostic trapezoid-shaped red markings on the vocal sac in males. Molecular genetic analyses show that the new species is highly divergent (3.1-20.1% sequence divergence) from all congeneric species, and forms a well-supported clade with its sister species, Zakerana asmati. The discovery of a new amphibian species from the urban core of Dhaka together with several recent descriptions of new amphibian species from Bangladesh may indicate that more amphibian species remain to be discovered from this country.
  • Jacobs, Sander; Dendoncker, Nicolas; Martin-Lopez, Berta; Barton, David Nicholas; Gomez-Baggethun, Erik; Boeraeve, Fanny; McGrath, Francesca L.; Vierikko, Kati; Geneletti, Davide; Sevecke, Katharina J.; Pipart, Nathalie; Primmer, Eeva; Mederly, Peter; Schmidt, Stefan; Aragao, Alexandra; Baral, Himlal; Bark, Rosalind H.; Briceno, Tania; Brogna, Delphine; Cabral, Pedro; De Vreese, Rik; Liquete, Camino; Mueller, Hannah; Peh, Kelvin S. -H.; Phelan, Anna; Rincon, Alexander R.; Rogers, Shannon H.; Turkelboom, Francis; Van Reeth, Wouter; van Zanten, Boris T.; Wam, Hilde Karine; Washbourne, Carla-Leanne (2016)
    We are increasingly confronted with severe social and economic impacts of environmental degradation all over the world. From a valuation perspective, environmental problems and conflicts originate from trade-offs between values. The urgency and importance to integrate nature's diverse values in decisions and actions stand out more than ever. Valuation, in its broad sense of 'assigning importance', is inherently part of most decisions on natural resource and land use. Scholars from different traditions -while moving from heuristic interdisciplinary debate to applied transdisciplinary science- now acknowledge the need for combining multiple disciplines and methods to represent the diverse set of values of nature. This growing group of scientists and practitioners share the ambition to explore how combinations of ecological, socio-cultural and economic valuation tools can support real-life resource and land use decision-making. The current sustainability challenges and the ineffectiveness of single-value approaches to offer relief demonstrate that continuing along a single path is no option. We advocate for the adherence of a plural valuation culture and its establishment as a common practice, by contesting and complementing ineffective and discriminatory single-value approaches. In policy and decision contexts with a willingness to improve sustainability, integrated valuation approaches can be blended in existing processes, whereas in contexts of power asymmetries or environmental conflicts, integrated valuation can promote the inclusion of diverse values through action research and support the struggle for social and environmental justice. The special issue and this editorial synthesis paper bring together lessons from pioneer case studies and research papers, synthesizing main challenges and setting out priorities for the years to come for the field of integrated valuation.
  • Di Minin, Enrico; Slotow, Rob; Fink, Christoph; Bauer, Hans; Paker, Craig (2021)
    African lions (Panthera leo) and African savanna (Loxodonta africana) and forest (L. cyclotis) elephants pose threats to people, crops, and livestock, and are themselves threatened with extinction. Here, we map these human-wildlife conflicts across Africa. Eighty-two percent of sites containing lions and elephants are adjacent to areas with considerable human pressure. Areas at severe risk of conflict (defined as high densities of humans, crops, and cattle) comprise 9% of the perimeter of these species' ranges and are found in 18 countries hosting, respectively, similar to 74% and 41% of African lion and elephant populations. Although a variety of alternative conflict-mitigation strategies could be deployed, we focus on assessing the potential of high-quality mitigation fences. Our spatial and economic assessments suggest that investments in the construction and maintenance of strategically located mitigation fences would be a cost-effective strategy to support local communities, protect people from dangerous wildlife, and prevent further declines in lion and elephant populations.
  • Kangas, Johanna; Ollikainen, Markku (2022)
    Forests can play a significant role both in halting biodiversity loss and in mitigating climate change. A variety of payments for ecosystem services (PES) schemes exists to promote biodiversity conservation in forests. These schemes could be used to strengthen the role of forests as carbon sinks as well. This paper analyzes the implications of supplementing a PES scheme that targets boreal forest biodiversity with a carbon index. We use a site selection framework to examine how the proposed scheme impacts the promotion of both targets. We compare a case where the selection is done solely based on biodiversity values to a case where the selection is done based on both biodiversity and carbon benefits. The carbon index is formulated as current carbon storage or as future carbon sink. Correspondingly, biodiversity is maximized based on either current ecological values or potential ones. We compare equal or differing weights for biodiversity and carbon indexes, and examine trade-offs between biodiversity and CO2 in current and future values. Combined index values increase with the carbon index, but there is a trade-off between biodiversity and CO2 values if the conservation budget is not increased when the carbon index is introduced. There is a temporal trade-off in biodiversity and carbon values between selecting sites based on current or future values. Younger stands are preferred at the expense of old-growth stands with the carbon index. Weights can be used to balance the trade-off between biodiversity and carbon benefits. Overall, risks to losing significant ecological value from the conservation network are negligible, but the limited number of sites decreases the generalizability of the results.
  • Chichorro, Filipe; Juslén, Aino; Cardoso, Pedro (2019)
    Biodiversity is shrinking rapidly, and despite our efforts only a small part of it has been assessed for extinction risk. Identifying the traits that make species vulnerable might help us to predict the status for those less known. We gathered information on the relationships between traits and extinction risk from 173 publications, across all taxa, spatial scales and biogeographical regions, in what we think it is the most comprehensive compilation to date. We aimed to identify (1) taxonomical and spatial biases, and (2) statistically robust and generalizable predictors of extinction risk through the use of meta-analyses. Vertebrates and the Palaearctic are the most studied taxon and region because of higher accumulation of data in these groups. Among the many traits that have been suggested to be predictors, only three had enough data for meta-analyses. Two of them are potentially useful in assessing risk for the lesser-known species: regardless of the taxon, species with small range and narrow habitat breadth are more vulnerable to extinction. Contrastingly, body size (the most studied trait) did not present a consistently positive or negative response. We hypothesize that the relationship between body size and extinction risk is shaped by different aspects, namely the phenomena represented by body size depending on the taxonomic group. To increase our understanding of the drivers of extinction, further studies should focus on understudied groups such as invertebrates and fungi and regions such as the tropics and expand the number of traits in comparative analyses that should avoid current biases.
  • Fraixedas, Sara; Linden, Andreas; Piha, Markus; Cabeza, Mar; Gregory, Richard; Lehikoinen, Aleksi (2020)
    The current loss of biodiversity has been broadly acknowledged as the main cause of ecosystem change. To halt this trend, several international agreements have been made, and various biodiversity metrics have been developed to evaluate whether the targets of these agreements are being met. The process of developing good indicators is not trivial. Indicators should be able to synthesize and communicate our current knowledge, but they also need to meet both scientific and practical criteria. Since it would not be practical to monitor all species, indicators are mainly built on the monitoring of some well-known taxa, such as birds. Here we systematically review the wide spectrum of bird biodiversity indicators (hereafter indicators) available to: i) evaluate recent methodological advances; ii) identify current knowledge gaps jeopardizing indicator interpretation and use in guiding decision-making; and iii) examine challenges in their applicability across different spatial and temporal contexts. We pay particular attention to indicator characteristics such as site and species selection, spatial, seasonal and habitat coverage, and statistical issues in developing indicators and tools to tackle them, to provide specific recommendations for the future construction of indicators. Several methodological advances have recently been made to enhance the process of indicator development, including multiple ways to select sites and species to increase their robustness. However, we found that there are strong spatial, seasonal and habitat biases among the selected indicators. Most of them are from Europe, using mainly census data from the breeding season and typically covering farmland and forest habitats. The major challenges that we detected in their applicability were related to the modelling of the statistical uncertainty associated to the indicator. We recommend the use of quantitative methods in site and species selection procedures whenever possible. Current indicators should be expanded to areas outside Europe and to less studied habitats and should not neglect monitoring work outside the breeding season. Time-series analyses studying temporal trends and using multi-species data should in general account for temporal autocorrelation as well as for phylogenetic correlation. Multi-species hierarchical models are a good alternative for analysing and constructing indicators, but they need to include annual random effects allowing for unexplained annual variation in the average status of the community, i.e. the indicator target. Despite methodological and context-specific differences in the indicators reviewed, most of them seem to highlight the urgent need of devising strategic climate and conservation policies to improve the status and trends of biodiversity.
  • Hochkirch, Axel; Samways, Michael J.; Gerlach, Justin; Bohm, Monika; Williams, Paul; Cardoso, Pedro; Cumberlidge, Neil; Stephenson, P. J.; Seddon, Mary B.; Clausnitzer, Viola; Borges, Paulo A.; Mueller, Gregory M.; Pearce-Kelly, Paul; Raimondo, Domitilla C.; Danielczak, Anja; Dijkstra, Klaas-Douwe B. (2021)
    Measuring progress toward international biodiversity targets requires robust information on the conservation status of species, which the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List of Threatened Species provides. However, data and capacity are lacking for most hyperdiverse groups, such as invertebrates, plants, and fungi, particularly in megadiverse or high-endemism regions. Conservation policies and biodiversity strategies aimed at halting biodiversity loss by 2020 need to be adapted to tackle these information shortfalls after 2020. We devised an 8-point strategy to close existing data gaps by reviving explorative field research on the distribution, abundance, and ecology of species; linking taxonomic research more closely with conservation; improving global biodiversity databases by making the submission of spatially explicit data mandatory for scientific publications; developing a global spatial database on threats to biodiversity to facilitate IUCN Red List assessments; automating preassessments by integrating distribution data and spatial threat data; building capacity in taxonomy, ecology, and biodiversity monitoring in countries with high species richness or endemism; creating species monitoring programs for lesser-known taxa; and developing sufficient funding mechanisms to reduce reliance on voluntary efforts. Implementing these strategies in the post-2020 biodiversity framework will help to overcome the lack of capacity and data regarding the conservation status of biodiversity. This will require a collaborative effort among scientists, policy makers, and conservation practitioners.
  • Mammola, Stefano; Pavlek, Martina; Huber, Bernhard A.; Isaia, Marco; Ballarin, Francesco; Tolve, Marco; Cupic, Iva; Hesselberg, Thomas; Lunghi, Enrico; Mouron, Samuel; Graco-Roza, Caio; Cardoso, Pedro (2022)
    Species traits are an essential currency in ecology, evolution, biogeography, and conservation biology. However, trait databases are unavailable for most organisms, especially those living in difficult-to-access habitats such as caves and other subterranean ecosystems. We compiled an expert-curated trait database for subterranean spiders in Europe using both literature data (including grey literature published in many different languages) and direct morphological measurements whenever specimens were available to us. We started by updating the checklist of European subterranean spiders, now including 512 species across 20 families, of which at least 192 have been found uniquely in subterranean habitats. For each of these species, we compiled 64 traits. The trait database encompasses morphological measures, including several traits related to subterranean adaptation, and ecological traits referring to habitat preference, dispersal, and feeding strategies. By making these data freely available, we open up opportunities for exploring different research questions, from the quantification of functional dimensions of subterranean adaptation to the study of spatial patterns in functional diversity across European caves.
  • Amara, Edward; Adhikari, Hari; Heiskanen, Janne; Siljander, Mika; Munyao, Martha; Omondi, Patrick; Pellikka, Petri (2020)
    Savannahs provide valuable ecosystem services and contribute to continental and global carbon budgets. In addition, savannahs exhibit multiple land uses, e.g., wildlife conservation, pastoralism, and crop farming. Despite their importance, the effect of land use on woody aboveground biomass (AGB) in savannahs is understudied. Furthermore, fences used to reduce human-wildlife conflicts may affect AGB patterns. We assessed AGB densities and patterns, and the effect of land use and fences on AGB in a multi-use savannah landscape in southeastern Kenya. AGB was assessed with field survey and airborne laser scanning (ALS) data, and a land cover map was developed using Sentinel-2 satellite images in Google Earth Engine. The highest woody AGB was found in riverine forest in a conservation area and in bushland outside the conservation area. The highest mean AGB density occurred in the non-conservation area with mixed bushland and cropland (8.9 Mg center dot ha(-1)), while the lowest AGB density (2.6 Mg center dot ha(-1)) occurred in overgrazed grassland in the conservation area. The largest differences in AGB distributions were observed in the fenced boundaries between the conservation and other land-use types. Our results provide evidence that conservation and fences can create sharp AGB transitions and lead to reduced AGB stocks, which is a vital role of savannahs as part of carbon sequestration.
  • Matthies, Brent D.; D'Amato, Dalia; Berghäll, Sami; Ekholm, Tommi; Hoen, Hans Fredrik; Holopainen, Jani; Korhonen, Jaana E.; Lähtinen, Katja; Mattila, Osmo; Toppinen, Anne; Valsta, Lauri; Wang, Lei; Yousefpour, Rasoul (2016)
    Natural and business ecosystems are complex and dynamic service systems that interact through the utilization of ecosystem service offerings for human well-being. Currently, natural and business sciences have not developed a shared and common set of service-based terms or concepts for discussing ecosystem service offerings in the process of value co-creation. In this study, the ecosystem service approach was compared with marketing science's service-dominant logic. The terminology and concepts were harmonized, and the two approaches were then integrated into a service-dominant value creation (SVC) framework. The incorporation of natural ecosystems includes accounting for the flow of positive and negative impacts through associated value networks. Therefore, the term value-in-impact was proposed to describe these value flows. A case study of the global forest-based sector was then presented, demonstrating how to discuss current research challenges using the proposed framework. In conclusion, a shared service-dominant approach provides an opportunity for deeper inter-disciplinary discussion between natural and business sciences. This study represents a contribution towards the development of a holistic service science that includes consideration for natural ecosystems. The SVC framework also addresses many of the multidimensional challenges noted by previous sustainability frameworks. (C) 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
  • Tima, Tanjina Akter; Schneider, Petra; Chanda, Swapan Kumar; Mozumder, Mohammad Mojibul Hoque; Hossain, Mohammad Mosarof; Begum, Amany; Shamsuzzaman, Md. Mostafa (2021)
    Tanguar Haor (TH) is considered one of the Ecologically Critical Areas (ECAs) of Bangladesh and is internationally recognized as RAMSAR wetland (2nd Ramsar site) known to provide multiple ecosystem services to the society. Nevertheless, multidimensional threats and stressors, the capacity to supply ESs, and the biodiversity of the TH significantly degrades and threatens this wetland's conservation and sustainability. Although the legal framework promises the sustainable conservation of fisheries resources, information on the implementation scenarios of fisheries laws, regulations, and policies in the TH Ramsar are scant. By merging qualitative and quantitative data of primary and secondary sources, this research aimed to analyze the legal framework to check the effectiveness of regulations for non-conflicting fisheries resources and the sustainable conservation of the TH Ramsar. Primary empirical data were collected by employing Participatory Rural Appraisal (PRA) tools, i.e., 204 semi-structured questionnaire-based individual interviews with fishers, three focus group discussions, and 14 key informants' interviews in three fishing villages in the TH. In contrast, secondary data was set by reviewing published literature and related official documents. Results showed that, due to weak enforcement with inadequate surveillance and poor implementation of the legal framework, there was a high non-compliance with fishing laws, rules, and policies. Destructive and prohibited fishing gears, e.g., the use of small mesh fine nylon nets (current jal), purse seine net (ber jal), and the harvesting during ban period-illicit catch were widespread in the study areas. In addition, catching undersized fish, fishing at the restricted areas (sanctuary area), and fishing during spawning seasons occur often. There is a crying need for a comprehensive legal and policy framework to contextualize the local context, ensure the proper implementation of the fishing laws and regulations, increase the managerial inefficiency of enforcing agencies, ensure livelihood support during the fishing ban, and afford good alternative income options are still significant issues for good governance in the Tanguar Haor ECA. Findings might help to identify the gaps and misunderstanding of the existing legal practice while submitting urgent attention to the need for drawing a comprehensive legal and policy framework (contextually modified according to the local context), taking initiatives and acting synchronously for proper implementation, and calling transdisciplinary collaboration and cooperation among the agencies that may ensure the non-conflicting use of the natural resources of the TH that can be also helpful for the better conservation of this Ramsar wetland.
  • Ovaskainen, Otso; de Camargo, Ulisses Moliterno; Somervuo, Panu (2018)
    Automated audio recording offers a powerful tool for acoustic monitoring schemes of bird, bat, frog and other vocal organisms, but the lack of automated species identification methods has made it difficult to fully utilise such data. We developed Animal Sound Identifier (ASI), a MATLAB software that performs probabilistic classification of species occurrences from field recordings. Unlike most previous approaches, ASI locates training data directly from the field recordings and thus avoids the need of pre-defined reference libraries. We apply ASI to a case study on Amazonian birds, in which we classify the vocalisations of 14 species in 194504 one-minute audio segments using in total two weeks of expert time to construct, parameterise, and validate the classification models. We compare the classification performance of ASI (with training templates extracted automatically from field data) to that of monitoR (with training templates extracted manually from the Xeno-Canto database), the results showing ASI to have substantially higher recall and precision rates.
  • Becker, Daniel J.; Hall, Richard J.; Forbes, Kristian M.; Plowright, Raina K.; Altizer, Sonia (2018)
  • Tolvanen, Jere; Pakanen, Veli-Matti; Valkama, Jari; Tornberg, Risto (2017)
    Capsule: Mark-recapture data suggest low apparent survival and sex- and population-specific site fidelity and territory turnover in adult Northern Goshawks Accipiter gentilis breeding in northern Europe.Aims: To understand how species cope with global environmental change requires knowledge of variation in population demographic rates, especially from populations close to the species' northern range limit and from keystone species such as raptors. We analyse apparent survival and breeding dispersal propensity of adult Northern Goshawks breeding in northern Europe.Methods: We used long-term mark-recapture data from two populations in Finland, northern Europe, and Cormack-Jolly-Seber models and binomial generalized linear models to investigate sex- and population-specific variation in apparent survival, territory turnover and site fidelity.Results: We report low apparent survival (53-72%) of breeding adult Goshawks. Breeding dispersal propensity was higher in females than males, especially in northern Finland, contrasting with previous studies that suggest high site fidelity in both sexes.Conclusion: Low apparent survival in females may be mainly due to permanent emigration outside the study areas, whereas in males the survival rate may truly be low. Both demographic aspects may be driven by the combination of sex-specific roles related to breeding and difficult environmental conditions prevailing in northern latitudes during the non-breeding season.
  • Fernandez-Llamazares, Alvaro; Lopez-Baucells, Adria; Rocha, Ricardo; Andriamitandrina, Santatra F. M.; Andriatafika, Zo Emmanuel; Burgas, Daniel; Temba, Eric Marcel; Torrent, Laura; Cabeza, Mar (2018)
    Despite conservation discourses in Madagascar increasingly emphasizing the role of customary institutions for wildlife management, we know relatively little about their effectiveness. Here, we used semi-structured interviews with 54 adults in eight villages to investigate whether sacred caves and taboos offer conservation benefits for cave-dwelling bats in and around Tsimanampetsotsa National Park, south-west Madagascar. Although some caves were described as sites of spiritual significance for the local communities, most interviewees (c. 76%) did not recognize their present-day sacred status. Similarly, only 22% of the interviewees recognized taboos inhibiting bat hunting and consumption. Legal protection of bats and caves through protected areas was often more widely acknowledged than customary regulations, although up to 30% of the interviewees reported consumption of bats within their communities. Guano extraction was often tolerated in sacred caves in exchange for economic compensation. This may benefit bat conservation by creating incentives for bat protection, although extraction is often performed through destructive and exploitative practices with little benefit for local communities. In view of these results our study questions the extent to which sacred sites, taboos and protected areas offer protection for bats in Madagascar. These results support previous studies documenting the erosion of customary institutions in Madagascar, including the loss of the spiritual values underpinning sacred sites. Given that many Malagasy bats are cave-dwelling species and that most depend on the customary protection of these sites, it is important to obtain a better understanding of the complex interactions between spiritual practices, taboos and protected areas in sustaining bat diversity.