Browsing by Subject "PROTECTED AREAS"

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  • 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.
  • 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.
  • Virkkala, Raimo; Lehikoinen, Aleksi (2017)
    Species richness is predicted to increase in the northern latitudes in the warming climate due to ranges of many southern species expanding northwards. We studied changes in the composition of the whole avifauna and in bird species richness in a period of already warming climate in Finland (in northern Europe) covering 1,100km in south-north gradient across the boreal zone (over 300,000km(2)). We compared bird species richness and species-specific changes (for all 235 bird species that occur in Finland) in range size (number of squares occupied) and range shifts (measured as median of area of occupancy) based on bird atlas studies between 1974-1989 and 2006-2010. In addition, we tested how the habitat preference and migration strategy of species explain species-specific variation in the change of the range size. The study was carried out in 10km squares with similar research intensity in both time periods. The species richness did not change significantly between the two time periods. The composition of the bird fauna, however, changed considerably with 37.0% of species showing an increase and 34.9% a decrease in the numbers of occupied squares, that is, about equal number of species gained and lost their range. Altogether 95.7% of all species (225/235) showed changes either in the numbers of occupied squares or they experienced a range shift (or both). The range size of archipelago birds increased and long-distance migrants declined significantly. Range loss observed in long-distance migrants is in line with the observed population declines of long-distance migrants in the whole Europe. The results show that there is an ongoing considerable species turnover due to climate change and due to land use and other direct human influence. High bird species turnover observed in northern Europe may also affect the functional diversity of species communities.
  • Engen, Sigrid; Hausner, Vera Helene; Gurney, Georgina G.; Broderstad, Else Grete; Keller, Rose; Lundberg, Aase Kristine; Murguzur, Francisco Javier Ancin; Salminen, Emma; Raymond, Christopher M.; Falk-Andersson, Jannike; Fauchald, Per (2021)
    Ocean-based economic development arising from an increasing interest in the 'blue economy' is placing ecosystems and small-scale fisheries under pressure. The dominant policy response for dealing with multiple uses is the allocation of coastal space through coastal zone planning (CZP). Recent studies have shown that the rush to develop the blue economy and regulate coastal activity can result in social injustices and the exclusion of less powerful and unrecognized groups (e.g., small-scale fishers, women, Indigenous peoples and youth). To achieve a primary goal of the 2030 sustainable development agenda to "leave no one behind", it is important to understand the implications of coastal planning and development for these groups. Here, we present a social survey protocol for examining perceptions of justice related to small-scale fisheries (SSF) in the context of the blue economy in coastal areas. Specifically, we designed the survey instrument and sampling protocol to assess whether decisions about the use of the coastal zone over the last five years have i) followed principles of good governance, ii) recognized fishers' knowledge, culture and rights and iii) been attentive to impacts of changed coastal zone use on fisheries. The survey will engage coastal planners (N = app. 120) and fishers (N = app. 4300) in all the coastal municipalities (N = 81) in Northern-Norway. The sampling protocol is designed to ensure representation of different sectors of society, including those defined by gender, age, ethnicity and occupation (e.g., small-scale fishers, large-scale fishers, coastal planners).
  • Musilova, Zuzana; Musil, Petr; Zouhar, Jan; Senkyrova, Adela; Pavon-Jordan, Diego; Nummi, Petri (2022)
    Understanding species habitat use and factors affecting changes in their distributions are necessary to promote the conservation of any biological community. We evaluated the changes in wetland use of the non-breeding waterbird community. Based on long-term citizen-science data (1988-2020), we tested the hypotheses that wetland use is associated with species diet and potential range-shift drivers (the tendency to occupy the same sites in consecutive years-site affinity-and the species' average temperature across its wintering range-species temperature index). We analysed species-specific wetland use of 25 species of waterbirds wintering in Czechia over a period of 33 years. The analyses explained variability in trends in numbers of the studied waterbird species across four inland wetland types: reservoirs; fishponds; industrial waters created by flooding of former mining sites; and running waters. Trends in waterbird abundance positively correlated with species' diet on fishponds, industrial and running waters. Among the diet groups, invertivores showed the largest increase in abundances on industrial waters, closely followed by herbivores. Herbivores showed the largest increase in abundances in fishponds, and piscivores did so in running waters. Regarding range-shift drivers, species with higher site affinity showed higher abundances on running waters, while species with low species temperature index (i.e. wintering on average in sites with lower temperature) were more abundant on reservoirs. The abundance of both warm-dwelling and species with low site affinity increased on fishponds and industrial waters. Our findings suggest that the increased importance of the wetland types considered here for wintering waterbirds is likely to be linked to diet related changes in habitat use and changes in species distributions; and highlight that wintering waterbirds are expected to select sites with higher availability of food, higher energy content, and lower foraging cost. Recent and rapid changes in species distributions may lead to a decrease in the effectiveness of national and international conservation efforts. When planning conservation measures, it should be kept in mind that climate change does not only imply large-scale north/north-eastwards shifts of entire waterbird distributions, but can also modify the use of the habitats by waterbird species inside their traditional wintering range.
  • Di Minin, Enrico; Clements, Hayley Susan; Correia, Ricardo A.; Cortes Capano, Gonzalo; Fink, Christoph; Haukka, Anna; Hausmann, Anna; Kulkarni, Ritwik; Bradshaw, Corey (2021)
    The widespread activity of recreational hunting is proposed as a means of conserving nature and supporting livelihoods. However, recreational hunting-especially trophy hunting-has come under increasing scrutiny based on ethical concerns and the arguments that it can threaten species and fail to contribute meaningfully to local livelihoods. We provide an overview of the peer-reviewed literature on recreational hunting of terrestrial birds and mammals between 1953 and 2020 (> 1,000 papers). The most-studied species are large mammals from North America, Europe, and Africa. While there is extensive research on species' ecology to inform sustainable hunting practices, there is comparably little research on the role of local perceptions and institutions in determining socioeconomic and conservation outcomes. Evidence is lacking to answer the pressing questions of where and how hunting contributes to just and sustainable conservation efforts. We outline an agenda to build this evidence base through research that recognizes diverse social-ecological contexts.
  • Kujala, Heini; Moilanen, Atte; Araujo, Miguel B.; Cabeza, Mar (2013)
  • Pellissier, V.; Schmucki, R.; Pe'er, G.; Aunins, A.; Brereton, T.M.; Brotons, L.; Carnicer, J.; Chodkiewicz, T.; Chylarecki, P.; del Moral, J.C.; Escandell, V.; Evans, D.; Foppen, R.; Harpke, A.; Heliölä, J.; Herrando, S.; Kuussaari, M.; Kühn, E.; Lehikoinen, A.; Lindström, Å.; Moshøj, C.M.; Musche, M.; Noble, D.; Oliver, T.H.; Reif, J.; Richard, D.; Roy, D.B.; Schweiger, O.; Settele, J.; Stefanescu, C.; Teufelbauer, N.; Touroult, J.; Trautmann, S.; van Strien, A.J.; van Swaay, C.A.M.; van Turnhout, C.; Vermouzek, Z.; Voříšek, P.; Jiguet, F.; Julliard, R. (2020)
    ABSTRACT The European Union's Natura 2000 (N2000), is one of the largest international networks of protected areas. One of its aims is to secure the status of a pre-determined set of (targeted) bird and butterfly species. However, also non-target species may benefit from N2000. We evaluated how the terrestrial component of this network relates to the abundance of non-targeted, more common bird and butterfly species using data from long-term volunteer-based monitoring programs in 9,602 sites for birds and 2,001 sites for butterflies. In almost half of the 155 bird species assessed, and particularly among woodland specialists, abundance increased with the proportion of N2000 sites in the landscape. The corresponding positive relationship was found for 27 of the 104 butterfly species, although most of these species were generalists. These positive relationships disappeared for most of the species when land-cover covariates were taken into account, hinting that land-cover is a primary factor defining the positive effects of the N2000 network. The increase in abundance with N2000 was correlated with the specialization index for bird species, but not for butterfly species. Although the N2000 network supports higher abundance of a large spectrum of species, the low number of specialist butterfly species showing a positive association stresses the need to implement management plan improving the quality of habitats of N2000 areas potentially harboring openland butterfly specialists. For a better understanding of the processes involved, we advocate for a standardized collection of data on N2000 sites. Article impact statement: Across Europe the abundance of a majority of nontarget birds and a quarter of nontarget butterflies increased with Natura 2000 coverage. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved
  • Reside, April E.; VanDerWal, Jeremy; Moilanen, Atte; Graham, Erin M. (2017)
    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.
  • Santangeli, Andrea; Toivonen, Tuuli; Pouzols, Federico Montesino; Pogson, Mark; Hastings, Astley; Smith, Pete; Moilanen, Atte (2016)
    Reliance on fossil fuels is causing unprecedented climate change and is accelerating environmental degradation and global biodiversity loss. Together, climate change and biodiversity loss, if not averted urgently, may inflict severe damage on ecosystem processes, functions and services that support the welfare of modern societies. Increasing renewable energy deployment and expanding the current protected area network represent key solutions to these challenges, but conflicts may arise over the use of limited land for energy production as opposed to biodiversity conservation. Here, we compare recently identified core areas for the expansion of the global protected area network with the renewable energy potential available from land-based solar photovoltaic, wind energy and bioenergy (in the form of Miscanthusxgiganteus). We show that these energy sources have very different biodiversity impacts and net energy contributions. The extent of risks and opportunities deriving from renewable energy development is highly dependent on the type of renewable source harvested, the restrictions imposed on energy harvest and the region considered, with Central America appearing at particularly high potential risk from renewable energy expansion. Without restrictions on power generation due to factors such as production and transport costs, we show that bioenergy production is a major potential threat to biodiversity, while the potential impact of wind and solar appears smaller than that of bioenergy. However, these differences become reduced when energy potential is restricted by external factors including local energy demand. Overall, we found that areas of opportunity for developing solar and wind energy with little harm to biodiversity could exist in several regions of the world, with the magnitude of potential impact being particularly dependent on restrictions imposed by local energy demand. The evidence provided here helps guide sustainable development of renewable energy and contributes to the targeting of global efforts in climate mitigation and biodiversity conservation.
  • Estrada, Alejandro; Garber, Paul A.; Gouveia, Sidney; Fernandez-Llamazares, Alvaro; Ascensao, Fernando; Fuentes, Agustin; Garnett, Stephen T.; Shaffer, Christopher; Bicca-Marques, Julio; Fa, Julia E.; Hockings, Kimberley; Shanee, Sam; Johnson, Steig; Shepard, Glenn H.; Shanee, Noga; Golden, Christopher D.; Cardenas-Navarrete, Anaid; Levey, Dallas R.; Boonratana, Ramesh; Dobrovolski, Ricardo; Chaudhary, Abhishek; Ratsimbazafy, Jonah; Supriatna, Jatna; Kone, Inza; Volampeno, Sylviane (2022)
    Primates, represented by 521 species, are distributed across 91 countries primarily in the Neotropic, Afrotropic, and Indo-Malayan realms. Primates inhabit a wide range of habitats and play critical roles in sustaining healthy ecosystems that benefit human and nonhuman communities. Approximately 68% of primate species are threatened with extinction because of global pressures to convert their habitats for agricultural production and the extraction of natural resources. Here, we review the scientific literature and conduct a spatial analysis to assess the significance of Indigenous Peoples' lands in safeguarding primate biodiversity. We found that Indigenous Peoples' lands account for 30% of the primate range, and 71% of primate species inhabit these lands. As their range on these lands increases, primate species are less likely to be classified as threatened or have declining populations. Safeguarding Indigenous Peoples' lands, languages, and cultures represents our greatest chance to prevent the extinction of the world's primates.
  • Borges, Paulo A. V.; Cardoso, Pedro; Kreft, Holger; Whittaker, Robert J.; Fattorini, Simone; Emerson, Brent C.; Gil, Artur; Gillespie, Rosemary G.; Matthews, Thomas J.; Santos, Ana M. C.; Steinbauer, Manuel J.; Thebaud, Christophe; Ah-Peng, Claudine; Amorim, Isabel R.; Aranda, Silvia Calvo; Arroz, Ana Moura; Azevedo, Jose Manuel N.; Boieiro, Mario; Borda-de-Agua, Luis; Carvalho, Jose Carlos; Elias, Rui B.; Fernandez-Palacios, Jose Maria; Florencio, Margarita; Gonzalez-Mancebo, Juana M.; Heaney, Lawrence R.; Hortal, Joaquin; Kueffer, Christoph; Lequette, Benoit; Martin-Esquivel, Jose Luis; Lopez, Heriberto; Lamelas-Lopez, Lucas; Marcelino, Jose; Nunes, Rui; Oromi, Pedro; Patino, Jairo; Perez, Antonio J.; Rego, Carla; Ribeiro, Servio P.; Rigal, Francois; Rodrigues, Pedro; Rominger, Andrew J.; Santos-Reis, Margarida; Schaefer, Hanno; Sergio, Cecilia; Serrano, Artur R. M.; Sim-Sim, Manuela; Stephenson, P. J.; Soares, Antonio O.; Strasberg, Dominique; Vanderporten, Alain; Vieira, Virgilio; Gabriel, Rosalina (2018)
    Islands harbour evolutionary and ecologically unique biota, which are currently disproportionately threatened by a multitude of anthropogenic factors, including habitat loss, invasive species and climate change. Native forests on oceanic islands are important refugia for endemic species, many of which are rare and highly threatened. Long-term monitoring schemes for those biota and ecosystems are urgently needed: (i) to provide quantitative baselines for detecting changes within island ecosystems, (ii) to evaluate the effectiveness of conservation and management actions, and (iii) to identify general ecological patterns and processes using multiple island systems as repeated 'natural experiments'. In this contribution, we call for a Global Island Monitoring Scheme (GIMS) for monitoring the remaining native island forests, using bryophytes, vascular plants, selected groups of arthropods and vertebrates as model taxa. As a basis for the GIMS, we also present new, optimized monitoring protocols for bryophytes and arthropods that were developed based on former standardized inventory protocols. Effective inventorying and monitoring of native island forests will require: (i) permanent plots covering diverse ecological gradients (e.g. elevation, age of terrain, anthropogenic disturbance); (ii) a multiple-taxa approach that is based on standardized and replicable protocols; (iii) a common set of indicator taxa and community properties that are indicative of native island forests' welfare, building on, and harmonized with existing sampling and monitoring efforts; (iv) capacity building and training of local researchers, collaboration and continuous dialogue with local stakeholders; and (v) long-term commitment by funding agencies to maintain a global network of native island forest monitoring plots.
  • Virtanen, Elina A.; Söderholm, Maria; Moilanen, Atte (2022)
    Conservation planning addresses the development and expansion of protected areas and requires data on for instance species, habitats, and biodiversity. Data on threats is often minimal, although necessary in conservation planning. In principle, threats should guide which conservation actions to take and where, and how to allocate resources. The lack of threat information may also limit the validity of areas to be conserved, if the condition of areas is degraded by threats unknown. The protocol described here outlines the methodology for a systematic review to explore how threats are theoretically and methodologically understood and used in conservation plans across freshwater, marine and terrestrial environments. Our primary research question is: how have threats informed conservation planning? Studies will be categorized according to the types of threats and conservation features used, theoretical and methodological approaches applied, geographical context, and biome. The results are expected to increase our understanding about how threats can and should be addressed in conservation planning.
  • Parker, Kim; De Vos, Alta; Clements, Hayley S.; Biggs, Duan; Biggs, Reinette (2020)
    Private land conservation areas (PLCAs) have become critical for achieving global conservation goals, but we lack understanding of how and when these areas respond to global pressures and opportunities. In southern Africa, where many PLCAs rely on trophy hunting as an income-generating strategy, a potential ban on trophy hunting locally or abroad holds unknown consequences for the future conservation of these lands. In this study, we investigate the consequences of a potential trophy hunting ban in PLCAs in two biodiversity hotspots in South Africa's Eastern and Western Cape provinces. We used semistructured interviews with PLCA managers and owners to elicit perceived impacts of an internationally imposed trophy hunting ban on conservation activities in PLCAs, and to probe alternative viable land uses. The majority of interviewees believed that both the economic viability of their PLCA and biodiversity would be lost following a hunting ban. Owners would primarily consider transitioning to ecotourism or livestock farming, but these options were constrained by the social-ecological context of their PLCA (e.g., competition with other PLCAs, ecological viability of farming). Our results suggest that a trophy hunting ban may have many unintended consequences for biodiversity conservation, national economies, and the livelihoods of PLCA owners and employees. Along with similar social-ecological studies in other areas and contexts, our work can inform policy decisions around global trophy hunting regulation.
  • Sanchez-Fernandez, David; Abellan, Pedro; Aragon, Pedro; Varela, Sara; Cabeza, Mar (2018)
    Recently, the European Commission adopted a new strategy to halt the loss of biodiversity. Member states are expected to favor a more effective collection and redistribution of European Union (EU) funds under the current Multiannual Financial Framework for 2014-2020. Because of the large spatial variation in the distribution of biodiversity and conservation needs at the continental scale, EU instruments should ensure that countries with higher biodiversity values get more funds and resources for the conservation than other countries. Using linear regressions, we assessed the association between conservation investments and biodiversity values across member states, accounting for a variety of conservation investment indicators, taxonomic groups (including groups of plants, vertebrates, and invertebrates), and indicators of biodiversity value. In general, we found clear overall associations between conservation investments and biodiversity variables. However, some countries received more or less investment than would be expected based on biodiversity values in those countries. We also found that the extensive use of birds as unique indicators of conservation effectiveness may lead to biased decisions. Our results can inform future decisions regarding funding allocation and thus improve distribution of EU conservation funds.
  • Fernandez-Llamazares, Alvaro; Helle, Joose; Eklund, Johanna; Balmford, Andrew; Moraes, Monica R.; Reyes-Garcia, Victoria; Cabeza, Mar (2018)
  • Souza, Carolina N.; Rodrigues, Ana Carla; Correia, Ricardo A.; Normande, Iran C.; Costa, Hugo; Guedes-Santos, Jhonatan; Malhado, Ana C. M.; Carvalho, Adriana; Ladle, Richard J. (2021)
    The use of digital content has become a powerful tool to evaluate and track macro-scale trends in human-nature relations. This is an emerging field of study known as conservation culturomics, that seeks to understand human culture through quantitative analysis in large bodies of digital content. Here, we used relative search volume on Google Search as a culturomic metric of public interest to investigate the global impact of the 2020 COVID-19 pandemic on national parks (NPs). Specifically, we focus on the impacts of limiting people?s mobility (through social isolation and lock-down measures) on public interest in NPs, since this is likely to have a strong causal relationship with park visitation. We generated public interest data for 2411 NPs from around the world for the period January 2016 to July 2020, to explore the relationship between relative search volume and periods of greater and lesser mobility restrictions due to the COVID-19 pandemic. We observed a global trend of declining public interest in national parks during the initial phase of the coronavirus pandemic, although there was considerable variation between both parks and countries. For example, contrary to the global trend public interest in NPs increased in Finland during the first lock-down. Significantly, countries whose national parks are highly dependent on international visitors (e.g., South Africa and India) had very severe declines in public interest. Our study reinforces the key role that visitation plays in driving public interest in national parks and illustrates the utility of culturomic methods for monitoring human-park interactions at scale.
  • Lehikoinen, Aleksi; Virkkala, Raimo (2016)
    There is increasing evidence that climate change shifts species distributions towards poles and mountain tops. However, most studies are based on presence-absence data, and either abundance or the observation effort has rarely been measured. In addition, hardly any studies have investigated the direction of shifts and factors affecting them. Here, we show using count data on a 1000km south-north gradient in Finland, that between 1970-1989 and 2000-2012, 128 bird species shifted their densities, on average, 37km towards the north north-east. The species-specific directions of the shifts in density were significantly explained by migration behaviour and habitat type. Although the temperatures have also moved on average towards the north north-east (186km), the species-specific directions of the shifts in density and temperature did not correlate due to high variation in density shifts. Findings highlight that climate change is unlikely the only driver of the direction of species density shifts, but species-specific characteristics and human land-use practices are also influencing the direction. Furthermore, the alarming results show that former climatic conditions in the north-west corner of Finland have already moved out of the country. This highlights the need for an international approach in research and conservation actions to mitigate the impacts of climate change.
  • Trivino, Maria; Kujala, Heini; Araujo, Miguel B.; Cabeza, Mar (2018)
    Species are expected to shift their distributions in response to global environmental changes and additional protected areas are needed to encompass the corresponding changes in the distributions of their habitats. Conservation policies are likely to become obsolete unless they integrate the potential impacts of climate and land-use change on biodiversity. We identify conservation priority areas for current and future projected distributions of Iberian bird species. We then investigate the extent to which global change informed priority areas are: (i) covered by existing protected area networks (national protected areas and Natura 2000); (ii) threatened by agricultural or urban land-use changes. We use outputs of species distributions models fitted with climatic data as inputs in spatial prioritization tools to identify conservation priority areas for 168 bird species. We use projections of land-use change to then discriminate between threatened and non-threatened priority areas. 19% of the priority areas for birds are covered by national protected areas and 23% are covered by Natura 2000 sites. The spatial mismatch between protected area networks and priority areas for birds is projected to increase with climate change. But there are opportunities to improve the protection of birds under climate change, as half of the priority areas are currently neither protected nor in conflict with urban or agricultural land-uses. We identify critical areas for bird conservation both under current and climate change conditions, and propose that they could guide the establishment of new conservation areas across the Iberian Peninsula complementing existing protected areas.
  • Pavon-Jordan, Diego; Abdou, Web; Azafzaf, Hichem; Balaz, Michal; Bino, Taulant; Borg, John J.; Bozic, Luca; Butchart, Stuart H. M.; Clausen, Preben; Sniauksta, Laimonas; Dakki, Mohamed; Devos, Koen; Domsa, Cristi; Encarnacao, Vitor; Etayeb, Khaled; Farago, Sandor; Fox, Anthony D.; Frost, Teresa; Gaudard, Clemence; Georgiev, Valeri; Goratze, Irakli; Hornman, Menno; Keller, Verena; Kostiushyn, Vasiliy; Langendoen, Tom; Ieronymidou, Christina; Lewis, Lesley J.; Lorentsen, Svein-Hakon; Luigujoe, Leho; Meissner, Wlodzimierz; Mikuska, Tibor; Molina, Blas; Musil, Petr; Musilova, Zuzana; Nagy, Szabolcs; Natykanets, Viktor; Nilsson, Leif; Paquet, Jean-Yves; Portolou, Danae; Ridzon, Josef; Santangeli, Andrea; Sayoud, Samir; Sciban, Marko; Stipniece, Antra; Teufelbauer, Norbert; Topic, Goran; Uzunova, Danka; Vizi, Andrej; Wahl, Johannes; Yavuz, Kiraz E.; Zenatello, Marco; Lehikoinen, Aleksi; Lawicki, Lukasz (2020)
    Migratory waterbirds require an effectively conserved cohesive network of wetland areas throughout their range and life-cycle. Under rapid climate change, protected area (PA) networks need to be able to accommodate climate-driven range shifts in wildlife if they are to continue to be effective in the future. Thus, we investigated geographical variation in the relationship between local temperature anomaly and the abundance of 61 waterbird species during the wintering season across Europe and North Africa during 1990-2015. We also compared the spatio-temporal effects on abundance of sites designated as PAs, Important Bird and Biodiversity Areas (IBAs), both, or neither designation (Unlisted). Waterbird abundance was positively correlated with temperature anomaly, with this pattern being strongest towards north and east Europe. Waterbird abundance was higher inside IBAs, whether they were legally protected or not. Trends in waterbird abundance were also consistently more positive inside both protected and unprotected IBAs across the whole study region, and were positive in Unlisted wetlands in southwestern Europe and North Africa. These results suggest that IBAs are important sites for wintering waterbirds, but also that populations are shifting to unprotected wetlands (some of which are IBAs). Such IBAs may therefore represent robust candidate sites to expand the network of legally protected wetlands under climate change in north-eastern Europe. These results underscore the need for monitoring to understand how the effectiveness of site networks is changing under climate change.