World Aquarium News
Abstract Rewilding has emerged as an audacious conservation approach aiming at restoring wild species interactions and their regulation of ecosystem processes by focusing on the key role of species that have been extensively extirpated by humans. Rewilding has gained increasing attention from scientists, conservationists and the mass-media. Yet, it has raised highly divergent perspectives as to which ecological processes and species assemblages should be restored. Here we argue that a pragmatic and immediate approach to rewilding unequivocally focused on preserving and restoring the structural and functional complexity of ecosystems must become a primary component of biodiversity conservation. We propose a process-oriented [...]
Wed, May 24, 2017
Source Conservation Letters
Abstract Invasive mammals are an ongoing threat at many seabird breeding locations, while impacts from climate change can occur over broad time scales. Combining management strategies for invasive mammal and climate change impacts is important for mitigating current threats and maximizing seabird survival into the future. We assessed all 713 islands with threatened seabirds for conservation importance, immediate benefits of three invasive mammal management actions, and risk of climate-change related flooding. Preventing invasions on the 397 islands without invasive mammals could benefit 72 seabird species. Invasive mammal eradication or localized action on 249 and 67 islands could benefit 71 and 46 [...]
Wed, May 24, 2017
Source Conservation Letters
Abstract Climate change poses a growing risk to global biodiversity. To prioritize conservation efforts, identification of the species and ecosystems most at risk from further changes in climatic conditions is critically needed. Although frameworks are available to assess species vulnerability to climate change, we still lack an easily implementable, ecosystem-level perspective to inform landscape management. Here, we introduce a novel, spatially explicit vulnerability framework able to generate assessments at the ecosystem scale and apply it to Mozambican forest mangroves, which are under growing pressures from climate change. Results show that most of these ecosystems are currently highly vulnerable to sea level [...]
Wed, May 24, 2017
Source Conservation Letters
Viruses are thought to frequently kill their host bacteria, especially at high microbial density. A state called lysogeny, in which viruses lie dormant but don't kill their hosts, has been thought to be relatively rare , mostly occurring at low bacterial concentrations. A new study suggests lysogeny might be much more common than previously believed. These findings could lead to a better understanding of degraded coral reef ecosystems and how to preserve them. [...]
Tue, May 23, 2017
Source Coral Reef News from Science Daily
Scientists have discovered a refuge for corals where the environment protects otherwise sensitive species to the increasing severity of climate change. [...]
Wed, May 17, 2017
Source Coral Reef News from Science Daily
Abstract Community-based conservation, where local decision makers are responsible for balancing conservation and development, is often preferred to exclusionary conservation that prioritizes use-limitation through strict regulation. Unraveling the evidence for conservation impact of different governance regimes is challenging. Focusing on conservation practices before and after a reform can provide an early indication of behavioral changes acting as a precursor to changes in social and ecological outcomes, which generally need more time to materialize. A recent reform in Norway provides a unique opportunity to evaluate the impact of local empowerment on conservation practices in protected areas. We analyzed 1,466 decisions in 31 [...]
Wed, May 17, 2017
Source Conservation Letters
For reefs facing huge challenges, more coral larvae doesn't necessarily translate to increased rates of coral recovery on degraded reefs, a new study has showed. [...]
Wed, May 17, 2017
Source Coral Reef News from Science Daily
A new study suggests that an aggressive reef competitor -- the Threespot Damselfish -- may have impeded the recovery of Caribbean long-spined sea urchin populations after a mysterious disease outbreak caused a massive die-off of these animals over three decades ago. [...]
Mon, May 15, 2017
Source Coral Reef News from Science Daily
Scientists have modeled how extremes in precipitation, drought, extreme heat and ocean temperatures will change in Australia at global temperatures 1.5°C and 2°C above pre-industrial conditions. It doesn't bode well for Australia's Great Barrier Reef. [...]
Mon, May 15, 2017
Source Coral Reef News from Science Daily
Abstract Chytridiomycosis has decimated amphibian biodiversity. Management options for the disease are currently limited, but habitat manipulation holds promise due to the thermal and physicochemical sensitivities of chytrid fungi. Here, we quantify the extent to which habitat management could reduce metapopulation extinction risk for an Australian frog susceptible to chytridiomycosis. Our modelling revealed that: (i) habitat management is most effective in climates where hosts are already less susceptible to the disease; (ii) creating habitat, particularly habitat with refugial properties adverse to the pathogen, may be substantially more effective than manipulating existing habitat, and; (iii) increasing metapopulation size and connectivity through strategic [...]
Mon, May 15, 2017
Source Conservation Letters
Abstract Successful conservation depends as much on people working together as it does on sound science and good governance. Research on cooperation in businesses, economics, psychology, and natural resource management has identified shared social and social-ecological dynamics, reviewed and categorized in this article, that can create unwanted surprises and problems for conservation efforts. Cooperation may fail when (a) individual and group benefits are in conflict (social dilemmas) or (b) social-ecological systems become caught in problem-causing and problem-enhancing feedbacks (SES traps). Knowing about and recognizing these dynamics can help decision-makers to understand and change key elements of problems and learn from the [...]
Sat, May 13, 2017
Source Conservation Letters
Abstract The Javan rhino (Rhinoceros sondaicus) is one of the most threatened mammals on Earth. The only remaining individuals live as part of a small population isolated in a single protected area, Ujung Kulon National Park, Java, Indonesia. Despite almost a century of studies, little is known about the factors that affect Javan rhino demography and distribution. National park officials require such information to identify conservation strategies and track the success and failures of these efforts; translocating selected individuals to establish a second population has been considered, but the risks must be weighed. We show that the 2013 global population of [...]
Tue, May 09, 2017
Source Conservation Letters
Scientists have used underwater vehicles to map deep sea reefs near the island of Bonaire in the Dutch Caribbean. Researchers believe data culled from the study can help conservation efforts and aid in hazard risk management throughout the Caribbean. [...]
Thu, May 04, 2017
Source Coral Reef News from Science Daily
Abstract The generation of genome-wide sequence data has brought with it both exciting opportunities for conservation and challenges for determining appropriate management practices in the face of complex evolutionary histories. Genomic data can provide deep insight into taxa with complex evolutionary origins, and is a powerful tool for biologists to obtain a more complete view of ancestry. Many policy decisions are encumbered by patterns of gene flow between species that reveal complex evolutionary histories. Here, we review conservation decisions in admixed species and highlight genomics research that demonstrates the commonality of hybridization in wildlife. We encourage a shift towards a web-of-life [...]
Wed, May 03, 2017
Source Conservation Letters