249 posts · 205,857 views
Conservation Maven reviews the latest groundbreaking research and books in the field of conservation.
The recent explosive growth in the exotic reptile trade in Florida has raised serious concerns about species establishing in the wild with negative consequences for ecosystems and human safety. To help us understand which exotic reptiles pose the greatest threat, researchers have identified risk factors that make certain species more likely to invade...... Read more »
Fujisaki, I., Hart, K., Mazzotti, F., Rice, K., Snow, S., & Rochford, M. (2009) Risk assessment of potential invasiveness of exotic reptiles imported to south Florida. Biological Invasions. DOI: 10.1007/s10530-009-9667-1
Covering over 1 million hectares across the United States, military bases sometimes encompass highly threatened ecosystems. For this reason, conservationists have been giving increased attention to military installations as potential places for conserving native biodiversity.
But with their intensive training exercises often involving explosions and heavy machinery, are military bases actually good for conservation?... Read more »
Rivers, J., Gipson, P., Althoff, D., & Pontius, J. (2010) Long-Term Community Dynamics of Small Landbirds with and Without Exposure to Extensive Disturbance from Military Training Activities. Environmental Management. DOI: 10.1007/s00267-009-9421-6
Over the past few years, restoration ecologists have made a surprising discovery - the invasion of exotic plants may enhance the competitive ability of native species. Scientists hypothesize that native plants which survive an invasion of exotic species may possess a competitive advantage against the invader which is then reinforced through evolutionary selection...... Read more »
Ferrero-Serrano, A., Hild, A., & Mealor, B. (2009) Can Invasive Species Enhance Competitive Ability and Restoration Potential in Native Grass Populations?. Restoration Ecology. DOI: 10.1111/j.1526-100X.2009.00611.x
Scientists test whether a focus on threatened mammals in Borneo leads to a cost-effective outcome for conservation read more... Read more »
DRUMMOND, S., WILSON, K., MEIJAARD, E., WATTS, M., DENNIS, R., CHRISTY, L., & POSSINGHAM, H. (2009) Influence of a Threatened-Species Focus on Conservation Planning. Conservation Biology. DOI: 10.1111/j.1523-1739.2009.01346.x
What happens to a wetland when you construct a dyke and cut off tidal flow for over two decades? Silvia Ibarra-Obando and fellow researchers looked at the effects of 22 years worth of tidal exclusion on Estero de Punta Banda, an arid estuary 120 km south of the U.S.-Mexico border...... Read more »
Ibarra-Obando, S., Poumian-Tapia, M., & Morzaria-Luna, H. (2010) Long-Term Effects of Tidal Exclusion on Salt Marsh Plain Species at Estero de Punta Banda, Baja California. Estuaries and Coasts. DOI: 10.1007/s12237-009-9253-x
Coastlines around the world will be affected by rising sea level over the next several decades. In some places, the impacts will be severe as flooding, erosion, and storm surge cause damage to coastal towns and transform habitats for coastal species. The big question for resource managers and planners: Where are the most vulnerable places?... Read more »
Abuodha, P., & Woodroffe, C. (2010) Assessing vulnerability to sea-level rise using a coastal sensitivity index: a case study from southeast Australia. Journal of Coastal Conservation. DOI: 10.1007/s11852-010-0097-0
Researchers from the University of Sweden demonstrates that the passive restoration of abandoned farms to semi-natural grassland can take a very long time - greater than 50 years. However, the study also finds that sowing a mix of grassland seeds can aid establishment...... Read more »
Öster, M., Ask, K., Cousins, S., & Eriksson, O. (2009) Dispersal and establishment limitation reduces the potential for successful restoration of semi-natural grassland communities on former arable fields. Journal of Applied Ecology. DOI: 10.1111/j.1365-2664.2009.01721.x
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SUTELA, T., & VEHANEN, T. (2009) Responses of fluvial fish assemblages to agriculture within the boreal zone. Fisheries Management and Ecology. DOI: 10.1111/j.1365-2400.2009.00711.x
A new study from South Africa touches on an interesting conservation question about whether we should place greater importance on quality or quantity when it comes to protecting habitat to conserve biodiversity...... Read more »
Dures, S., & Cumming, G. (2010) The confounding influence of homogenising invasive species in a globally endangered and largely urban biome: Does habitat quality dominate avian biodiversity?. Biological Conservation, 143(3), 768-777. DOI: 10.1016/j.biocon.2009.12.019
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Epanchin, P., Knapp, R., & Lawler, S. (2009) Nonnative trout impact an alpine-nesting bird by altering aquatic insect subsidies. Ecology, 2147483647. DOI: 10.1890/09-1974
Temperate forests in Europe are homogenizing even though conventional measures of plant community health might suggest otherwise...... Read more »
Naaf, T., & Wulf, M. (2010) Habitat specialists and generalists drive homogenization and differentiation of temperate forest plant communities at the regional scale. Biological Conservation. DOI: 10.1016/j.biocon.2009.12.027
A new study in Jamaica does a great job in quantifying the value that birds provide to coffee farmers by controlling agricultural pests.... Read more »
Johnson, M., Kellermann, J., & Stercho, A. (2009) Pest reduction services by birds in shade and sun coffee in Jamaica. Animal Conservation. DOI: 10.1111/j.1469-1795.2009.00310.x
For organizations that protect land by purchasing property (or the underlying development rights), a simple but harsh reality reins: Land is expensive. Money is limited. So you have to spend wisely. In this regard, a new study may help land conservationists identify the highest priority properties for preservation...... Read more »
Gorokhovich, Y., & Voustianiouk, A. (2009) Prioritization of coastal properties for conservation in New York State. Journal of Coastal Conservation. DOI: 10.1007/s11852-009-0081-8
Researchers conduct the first ever transcontinental assessment of the risks that the U.S. border fence poses to wildlife species...... Read more »
Lasky, J., Jetz, W., & Keitt, T. (2011) Conservation biogeography of the US-Mexico border: a transcontinental risk assessment of barriers to animal dispersal. Diversity and Distributions, 17(4), 673-687. DOI: 10.1111/j.1472-4642.2011.00765.x
A new study looks at whether land conservation programs are targeting their efforts to control the path of development and promote smart growth...... Read more »
Stoms, D., Jantz, P., Davis, F., & DeAngelo, G. (2009) Strategic targeting of agricultural conservation easements as a growth management tool. Land Use Policy, 26(4), 1149-1161. DOI: 10.1016/j.landusepol.2009.02.004
A new study demonstrates that human society has a surprisingly short collective memory of past ecological conditions. This “community amnesia” results in the shifting baseline syndrome, in which people misperceive ecological health and the magnitude of ecosystem changes...... Read more »
TURVEY, S., BARRETT, L., YUJIANG, H., LEI, Z., XINQIAO, Z., XIANYAN, W., YADONG, H., KAIYA, Z., HART, T., & DING, W. (2010) Rapidly Shifting Baselines in Yangtze Fishing Communities and Local Memory of Extinct Species. Conservation Biology. DOI: 10.1111/j.1523-1739.2009.01395.x
A new study uses a creative experimental design to test whether changing the author gender effects the outcome of the peer review process...... Read more »
Borsuk, R., Aarssen, L., Budden, A., Koricheva, J., Leimu, R., Tregenza, T., & Lortie, C. (2009) To Name or Not to Name: The Effect of Changing Author Gender on Peer Review. BioScience, 59(11), 985-989. DOI: 10.1525/bio.2009.59.11.10
Human disturbance can lead to an increase of both native and non-native predators that can subsequently lead to a decline in bird populations. For example, introduced predators such as the brown tree snake on Guam have been responsible for 34% of the 110 bird extinctions that have occurred on islands since the 1600s.
Therefore managers have undertaken predator eradication efforts to try and protect at-risk bird species. However given the cost of these programs and the controversy they can generate, it is important to critically evaluate whether or not they support the recovery of threatened species.... Read more »
SMITH, R., PULLIN, A., STEWART, G., & SUTHERLAND, W. (2010) Effectiveness of Predator Removal for Enhancing Bird Populations. Conservation Biology. DOI: 10.1111/j.1523-1739.2009.01421.x
Pamela McElwee from Arizona State University recently published an important study on the social costs of protected areas looking at the case of the Ke Go nature reserve in Vietnam. She wrote an excellent research summary for her self-titled blog, which she has graciously granted us permission to re-post here.... Read more »
McElwee, P. (2009) Resource Use Among Rural Agricultural Households Near Protected Areas in Vietnam: The Social Costs of Conservation and Implications for Enforcement. Environmental Management. DOI: 10.1007/s00267-009-9394-5
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Santos, M., & Whitham, T. (2009) Predictors of Ips confusus Outbreaks During a Record Drought in Southwestern USA: Implications for Monitoring and Management. Environmental Management. DOI: 10.1007/s00267-009-9413-6
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