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Conservation Maven reviews the latest groundbreaking research and books in the field of conservation.

Rob Goldstein
249 posts

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  • February 1, 2010
  • 08:00 AM

How do frogs respond to forest disturbance? Follow the gene flow...

by Rob Goldstein in Conservation Maven

A new study published in the journal Biological Conservation illustrates how landscape genetics can be used to discover how wildlife populations respond over time to anthropogenic and natural forest disturbances.

Stephen Spear and Andrew Storfer from Washington State University conducted genetic sampling of Rocky Mountain tailed frogs (Ascaphus montanus) across north-central Idaho at sites that were either subject to timber harvesting or historic wildfires and found that the responses to the ........ Read more »

  • February 18, 2010
  • 06:00 AM

Seawalls may affect abundance of prey for shorebirds, salmon

by Rob Goldstein in Conservation Maven

A new study in Puget Sound, Washington, suggests that building seawalls and other shoreline structures may reduce the diversity and abundance of some intertidal invertebrates and coastal insects. Because these creatures are food for salmon, shorebirds, and other wildlife, shoreline armoring might indirectly alter the broader ecosystem...... Read more »

  • April 22, 2010
  • 09:00 AM

Clean rivers could make coral reefs healthier

by Rob Goldstein in Conservation Maven

A new study by Australian scientists indicates that cutting water pollution in rivers that drain into the ocean may provide a significant health benefit to large parts of the Great Barrier Reef.

The researchers found that a fifth of the Great Barrier Reef suffers from low water quality, which reduces the diversity of corals living on the reef and favors a takeover by seaweeds.... Read more »

  • May 11, 2010
  • 09:00 AM

Fossil data links ocean acidification with mass decline of coral reefs

by Rob Goldstein in Conservation Maven

... Read more »

  • February 19, 2010
  • 07:00 AM

A method for evaluating the potential ecological impact of invasive species

by Rob Goldstein in Conservation Maven

Researchers have developed and tested a new method for evaluating the potential ecological impact of the invasive species at a site. Their approach, called the Index of Alien Impact - is innovative for a couple of reasons...... Read more »

  • April 16, 2010
  • 04:00 AM

Study links cancer mortality rates with ecological integrity of streams

by Rob Goldstein in Conservation Maven

A new study from West Virginia finds a significant relationship between the cancer mortality rates in local communities and the ecological integrity of nearby streams. Evidence suggests that coal mining is the underlying cause of both problems. This shows that measurements of stream ecological integrity can serve as a warning sign of underlying environmental problems that are causing cancer in local populations...... Read more »

  • March 16, 2010
  • 06:00 AM

When land managers unintentionally create ecological traps

by Rob Goldstein in Conservation Maven

Sometimes the well-intentioned efforts of land managers can have unintended negative consequences for threatened species. In a new case study, researchers from Israel show how efforts by the national forestry agency to improve scrubland habitat in the Negev desert actually created an ecological trap for a highly endangered, endemic lizard...... Read more »

  • May 3, 2010
  • 06:00 AM

Does land use zoning protect ecosystem health?

by Rob Goldstein in Conservation Maven

Land use zoning is the most commonly used policy tool in the United States for controlling the number of houses in a rural area. The tool is frequently used to minimize the impact of development on ecosystem health. However, according to a new study looking at lakes in Wisconsin, zoning regulations may sometimes protect ecosystems, but in other situations it may have much less of an effect...... Read more »

  • January 24, 2011
  • 12:12 PM

The ecological consequences of industrial kelp harvesting

by Rob Goldstein in Conservation Maven

Kelp forests provide important habitat for numerous invertebrates, fish, birds and marine mammals. The ecological consequences of industrial harvest of this habitat has not been fully evaluated. Now a recent study has demonstrated that there is justified cause for concern. The study revealed that the removal of these habitats has multi-trophic effects...... Read more »

Lorentsen, S., Sjøtun, K., & Grémillet, D. (2010) Multi-trophic consequences of kelp harvest. Biological Conservation, 143(9), 2054-2062. DOI: 10.1016/j.biocon.2010.05.013  

  • June 7, 2010
  • 06:00 AM

Priortizing restoration across agricultural landscapes

by Rob Goldstein in Conservation Maven

A new case study presents a planning method for prioritizing ecosystem restoration efforts across an agricultural region. While this type of systematic approach to prioritization has been widely used in land protection, it is much less common in restoration...... Read more »

  • January 28, 2010
  • 06:00 AM

The paradoxes of the Endangered Species Act (and how to fix them)

by Rob Goldstein in Conservation Maven

In a recent article in the journal Environmental Management, conservation biologist George Wilhere argues that the Endangered Species Act and its provision for habitat conservation plans are hampered by three main paradoxes: the Train Wreck Paradox, the Jeopardy Paradox, and the Maximum Mitigation Paradox. We interview George Wilhere and ask him how we can fix the problem...... Read more »

Wilhere, G. (2009) Three Paradoxes of Habitat Conservation Plans. Environmental Management, 44(6), 1089-1098. DOI: 10.1007/s00267-009-9399-0  

  • April 23, 2010
  • 09:00 AM

Sea ice decline linked with reduced polar bear size and reproduction

by Rob Goldstein in Conservation Maven

... Read more »

  • June 9, 2010
  • 06:00 AM

Nature promotes vitality in people, study finds

by Rob Goldstein in Conservation Maven

New research shows that interaction with nature, whether actual or imagined, has a significantly positive effect on self-reported levels of mental and physical energy...... Read more »

Ryan, R., Weinstein, N., Bernstein, J., Brown, K., Mistretta, L., & Gagné, M. (2010) Vitalizing effects of being outdoors and in nature. Journal of Environmental Psychology, 30(2), 159-168. DOI: 10.1016/j.jenvp.2009.10.009  

  • March 11, 2010
  • 06:00 AM

Delimiting the boundaries of a species invasion (with no prior info)

by Rob Goldstein in Conservation Maven

When it comes to successfully controlling invasive species, managers face the critically important step of figuring out the extent of the invasion. Researchers have developed and tested an innovative approach for accomplishing this challenging task...... Read more »

  • March 31, 2010
  • 01:53 PM

Estimating how many people are breaking the rules in a protected area

by Rob Goldstein in Conservation Maven

Successful conservation work is largely about getting people to follow the rules. A new study tests an innovative survey methodology to help resource managers figure out how many people are breaking the rules. This is actually a much tougher question to figure out than one might think...... Read more »

St. John, F., Edwards-Jones, G., Gibbons, J., & Jones, J. (2010) Testing novel methods for assessing rule breaking in conservation. Biological Conservation, 143(4), 1025-1030. DOI: 10.1016/j.biocon.2010.01.018  

  • June 8, 2010
  • 09:00 AM

Does sex matter in wildlife habitat preferences?

by Rob Goldstein in Conservation Maven

... Read more »

Conde, D., Colchero, F., Zarza, H., Christensen Jr., N., Sexton, J., Manterola, C., Chávez, C., Rivera, A., Azuara, D., & Ceballos, G. (2010) Sex matters: Modeling male and female habitat differences for jaguar conservation. Biological Conservation. DOI: 10.1016/j.biocon.2010.04.049  

  • June 1, 2010
  • 09:00 AM

The impact of off-road vehicles on beach-dwelling wildlife

by Rob Goldstein in Conservation Maven

... Read more »

  • June 4, 2010
  • 09:00 AM

Study illustrates impact of adajcent land use on stream water quality

by Rob Goldstein in Conservation Maven

... Read more »

  • April 6, 2010
  • 06:00 AM

Canadian prairie wetlands undergoing widespread degradation

by Rob Goldstein in Conservation Maven

... Read more »

Bartzen, B., Dufour, K., Clark, R., & Caswell, F. (2010) Trends in agricultural impact and recovery of wetlands in prairie Canada. Ecological Applications, 20(2), 525-538. DOI: 10.1890/08-1650.1  

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