Abstract Listing by Session


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   Fishing for what? Understanding fisher decision making through an analysis of their spatial behaviour Abernethy, K.*, University of East Anglia ; Kebede, B, University of East Anglia; Allison, E, The Worldfish Center; Dulvy, N, Simon Fraser University
Understanding the factors influencing people’s decisions on how to use environmental goods and services is fundamental to addressing fisheries sustainability concerns. The ability to accurately predict fisher response is crucial for management success. Despite the emphasis fisheries researchers and managers place on understanding decision-making frameworks, interdisciplinary approaches which incorporate the data-rich fisheries models with ethnographic and socio-economic data are underdeveloped. It is important to understand where fishers’ fish and why because of growing interest in the use of spatial policies, such as marine reserves. Current predictions of location choice depend on models which assume fishers are homogeneous and make decisions based on maximising catch value with perfect knowledge of the resource. In reality fisher decision-making is underpinned by complex and heterogeneous strategies in response to their particular social and economic contexts. We present a case study of fisher location choice in the South-west of England using an interdisciplinary approach. We use a random utility model to understand and predict where fisher’s choose to fish, using logbook and satellite data. We combine the model with interview data, providing in-depth and context specific understanding of ‘why’ fishers make the decisions they do, and the trade-offs they face. We conclude that a more accurate understanding of resource-user dynamics can be achieved by coupling the analytical strength of modelling techniques with context specific depth of social science methodology.
   Conservation of Urban Area for a Changing Planet Abiala, AA, University of Ibadan, Nigeria ; Lawal, MO*, Tai Solarin University of Education, Nigeria
This paper examines the significance of urban area conservation for a changing planet. The fundamental reason for loss of habitat and global pollution is the explosive growth of human population. It is evident that majority of people prefer urban areas to rural areas. The study was designed to investigate the extent to which urban dwellers were involved in exploring and conseving their natural resources. A total of 180 urban dwellers were purposively selected which consisted all the cities and towns in Nigeria. A ten-item questionnaire was adopted for data collection, using frequency counts, percentages and histograms for data analysis, the results indicated that vast majority of urban dwellers sometimes have clash, accidents, fire outbreaks, riots and advanced crime which resulted into loss of plants, animals, human lives, properties and natural resources. It was re-affirmed that building of modern infrastructures and factories in urban areas had sent some natural features into extinction. The findings were interpreted in terms of the need to protect our environment and society irrespective of urban development.
   Sustainable Agriculture for a Changing Planet Abiala, AA*, University of Ibadan, Nigeria
This paper examines the impact of conservation in sustainable agriculture for a changing planet. Although, there is mounting evidence that local agricultural officials protect agricultural lands and products among Nigerian public. The study was designed to investigate the extent to which local agricultural officials were involved in promoting sustainable agriculture. A total of 774 local agricultural officials were purposively selected which consisted all the 774 local government areas in Nigeria. A twenty-item questionnaire was used for data collection, using frequency counts, percentages and multiple bar charts for data analysis, the results indicated that a good number of arable lands had been diverted into buildings, cities, towns and a huge loss of farm inputs were recorded which resulted into food shortage. It was ascertained that a large number of farmers still use primitive methods and productivity is suffered. It was noted that harvested farm produce were poorly stored. The findings were interpreted in terms of the need to provide for human needs and protect our environment for continuity.
   Forestry and road development: an Aboriginal interpretation Adam, M-C*, CEF-UQAM ; Kneeshaw, D.D, CEF-UQAM
The forestry industry is a significant contributor to the development and maintenance of roads. However, regardless of a growing body of literature exposing the negative impacts of roads socially and environmentally, road considerations to date are limited to construction costs, maintenance costs and optimizing access to resources. One of the primary reasons is that the benefits versus loss incurred from road development on societies have not been appropriately weighed. Through interviews, this article offers a case study approach to explore how an Aboriginal community interprets and responds to the development of road networks in their territory. The results showed that there are many levels to the impacts of road development in Aboriginal communities involving many actors and affecting access mechanisms such as: social relations (Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal), environment, knowledge, technology and identity. In this study, respondents believed roads to disturb relationships and communications between actors rather than promote them. Intra-, inter- Aboriginal relations and environmental relations were most discussed as being affected by road development. More specifically, respect and permission to use were the key issues which consistently emerged as a result of the increased ease, speed and availability of the territory by roads. In effect, roads have increased individualistic behaviors and changed Aboriginal occupational patterns which consequently: 1) led to significant departures from characteristic Aboriginal ways, 2) affected community ties, and 3) changed Aboriginal relationships with the land. Using Aboriginal preoccupations over roads and access could help further define Aboriginal preferences for forestry strategies or re-think management such that forestry is better adapted to Aboriginal values.
   The High Nature Value farmland as a large scale conservation tool Aggeliki Doxa*, Centre de Recherches sur la Biologie des Populations d’Oiseaux, UMR 7204 MNHN-CNRS-UPMC, CP 51, Muséum National d’Histoire Naturelle, 55 rue Buffon, F-75005 Paris, France ; Yves Bas, Centre de Recherches sur la Biologie des Populations d’Oiseaux, UMR 7204 MNHN-CNRS-UPMC, CP 51, Muséum National d’Histoire Naturelle, 55 rue Buffon, F-75005 Paris, France; Maria Luisa Paracchini, European Commission - Joint Research Centre, Institute for Environment and Sustainability, TP 270, Via E. Fermi 2749, 21027 Ispra (VA), Italy; Philippe Pointereau, SOLAGRO , 75, voie du TOEC, 31076 Toulouse Cedex 3, France; Frédéric Jiguet, Centre de Recherches sur la Biologie des Populations d’Oiseaux, UMR 7204 MNHN-CNRS-UPMC, CP 51, Muséum National d’Histoire Naturelle, 55 rue Buffon, F-75005 Paris, France
The recent critical decline in European farmland biodiversity is linked to the intensification of agriculture and the abandonment of farmlands, whereas extensively cultivated areas are considered to be favorable for biodiversity (Donald et al. 2001,2006). The surface extent and the homogenization of agricultural practices over large geographical areas demand the use of effective and informative indices in order to monitor and manage present and future changes in farmland biodiversity. We use widely used indicators in Europe, the High Nature Value (Pointereau et al., 2007; Paracchini et al., 2008) and Common Bird Indicators (Jiguet 2008; Julliard et al., 2006), to describe ecological changes linked to agricultural activities in France at the national level. We found that HNV farmlands do not hold more bird species but more specialized bird communities than non-HNV farmlands. Specialist bird species are significantly more abundant in HNV farmlands and population trends are more positive in HNV than in non-HNV areas. We conclude that given the global biotic homogenization through the replacement of specialist species by generalists ones, High Nature Value farmlands constitute an efficient spatial network for recent large scale conservation needs and should provide guidelines on agricultural practices for adaptive management scenarios and policies.
   Locating mature forests using remote sensing in eastern Maryland, U.S. Aguilar, AL*, Salisbury University
The Nassawango Creek Preserve owned by The Nature Conservancy consists of 10,000 acres in the Eastern Shore of Maryland. The preserve contains a mosaic of forests in various successional stages. We developed a method to detect mature forests in and around the preserve. We used an ASTER image taken during the leaf-off season and another one taken during the leaf-on season. In this area, the proportion of deciduous trees over evergreens (mainly pines) increases with forest age. Because forests dominated by deciduous broadleaf trees exhibit greater NDVI values than evergreens in the leaf-on season, but lower values in the leaf-off season, the difference in NDVI values between the two images was used to detect broadleaf-dominated forests. By incorporating LIDAR tree height data, we were able to narrow our results down to possible sites of late-successional forests. Several predicted sites were visited to verify their successional status. The methodology correctly predicted the successional status of most (>90%) forest stands in the field sample, yet the actual range in age of these stands remains to be determined. Locating mature forest stands will help guide preserve managers and help prioritize future additions to the preserve. Also, local landowners can be informed of the presence and value of mature forests in private land surrounding the preserve. This method could be replicated in other mid-latitude areas where evergreen forests transition into deciduous forests.
   Dietary overlap and forage resource competition between livestock and Himalayan brown bear in the Pakistan Himalaya Akhlas, M*, University of East Anglia, UK ; Dolman, PM, University of East Anglia, UK; Watkinson, AR , The Living With Environmental Change (LWEC), UK; Kamal, N, Himalayan Wildlife Foundation, Pakistan
Alpine grassland habitats on Deosai Plateau in the Pakistan Himalayas support threatened Himalayan brown bear (Ursus arctos isabellinus), are also used extensively by seasonal pastoral communities. This study evaluates livestock densities, diet overlap between livestock and bears, requirement and competition for forage resources and livestock impacts on habitat suitability for brown bear. Animal unit density (AUE ha-1±SE) was higher in resident grazed buffer valleys (1.25±0.08) than nomad’s grazed valleys in core habitats (0.63±0.05). Grasses/sedges comprised more than 60% of the total diet of both brown bear and livestock and between both, dietary overlap (Pianka’s Index ranged 0.932-0.995) was very high. Forage consumption (kg ha-1 yr-1±SE), was 435±57 for caprids, grazing in core, and 745±151 for combined herds of caprids and bovines grazing in buffer. Resident grazed buffer valleys experienced intense grazing pressure amounting to 90% of potential biomass production. Brown bear ceased grazing grassland patches when sward height was reduced to 19cm (±0.6 SE). Livestock reduced swards well below this threshold, to 7.7cm (±0.8), transforming swards into a condition unsuitable for brown bear. Management of core habitats on Deosai Plateau are vital for the conservation of last remaining population of brown bears in Pakistan Himalaya.
   Subsistence Hunting Patterns in five human communities in Colombian Amazonia Alarcón-Nieto, G*, Conservación Internacional Colombia ; Palacios, E, Conservación Internacional Colombia
Indigenous and non-indigenous people inhabiting Colombian Amazonia hunt wildlife for food so management strategies are necessary to avoid possible local extinctions. We analyzed hunting patterns in three indigenous and two non-indigenous communities from the Lower Río Caquetá. We collected information on synergetic species, hunting techniques and customs. At least 22 species were killed in 277 hunting events. Rodents, ungulates, birds and reptiles were the main preys in both indigenous and non-indigenous communities, but each species capture frequency varied in every locality. In addition to shotguns, indigenous communities used several traditional weapons and traps during hunting trips, while non-indigenous people used mainly shotguns and usually hunted close to human settlements. Our results show differences in the subsistence hunting patterns between spatially close communities in the Lower Río Caquetá region in Colombia, which are probably related with ecological features (v.gr. Species densities). These small-scale differences suggest that regional wildlife management plans should be designed based upon, and incorporating community-specific wildlife use patterns information, so they can adequately address the need of conserving wildlife, but at the same time the actual conditions, opportunities and needs of the human communities.
   3. Influence of Spatial Data Resolution on Conservation Prioritization ANNI ARPONEN*, University of Helsinki ; Joona Lehtomäki, University of Helsinki; Erkki Tomppo, Finnish Forest Research Institute; Atte Moilanen, University of Helsinki
We explored the influence of spatial data resolution and varying scales of connectivity on conservation prioritization with the Zonation conservation planning software. We used data on Finnish forest characteristics. Our analyses are unprecedented regarding the amount of data – the study area comprises the entire Finland at 1ha resolution, which corresponds to over 25 million grid cells. Zonation produces a ranking of all the cells in the landscape, and therefore allows for rigorous comparisons of e.g. rank order of the cells, or spatial overlap of cells in different sized top fractions of the solution. The degree of spatial overlap depends on the settings and analysis variant. What is essential is that increasing the resolution improves the level of protection (% of habitat retained) regardless of analysis variant. Therefore use of high resolution data is always recommendable, especially as datasets large enough to cause computational issues are uncommon. But with high-resolution data it is of particular importance to consider connectivity requirements of species or habitats, as a scattered network of small cells is much worse than a scattered network of large cells.
   Economic Governance and The Commons Awoyemi, SM*, The Society for Conservation Biology
The meaning of economics has eluded science for centuries. The controversial definition blurs the avenue for applying economic theories on practical life. Governance on the other hand is leadership. Economic Governance therefore is the science that understands the mechanics of buying and selling merchandise under universal principles. In managing the Commons, the principles of economics are inadequate. What we need is the application of wisdom to aid economics in managing the Commons. Fisheries, forest, water and public property only need equity and fairness for perpetual management. Equity and fairness are two pivots of governance and are all that will uphold the sustainable management of the commons. The work refutes with practical evidence Nobel Laureate Professor Elinor Ostrom’s recent theory on the Commons and Economic Governance.
   Testing the fragmentation threshold with genetic data: genetic diversity and structure of a small marsupial in three Atlantic forest landscapes Balkenhol, Niko*, Leibniz-Institute for Zoo and Wildlife Research (IZW), Evolutionary Genetics, Postfach 601103, 10252 Berlin, Germany ; Fernandes, Fabiano, Dpto de Zoologia, Inst. de Biociências, Univ. de São Paulo, Rua do Matão, travessa 14, 101, CEP-05508-900, São Paulo, São Paulo, Brazil; Cornelius, Cintia, Dpto de Zoologia, Inst. de Biociências, Univ. de São Paulo, Rua do Matão, travessa 14, 101, CEP-05508-900, São Paulo, São Paulo, Brazil; Pardini, Renata, Dpto de Zoologia, Inst. de Biociências, Univ. de São Paulo, Rua do Matão, travessa 14, 101, CEP-05508-900, São Paulo, São Paulo, Brazil; Sommer, Simone, Leibniz-Institute for Zoo and Wildlife Research (IZW), Evolutionary Genetics, Postfach 601103, 10252 Berlin, Germany
Simulation studies and literature reviews suggest the existence of a fragmentation threshold, around 10-30% of remaining habitat, below which habitat loss interacts with habitat fragmentation, thus accelerating biodiversity loss. Despite the importance of this threshold for biodiversity conservation in human-modified landscapes, there has yet to be a robust empirical evaluation of it. Here, we assess whether the proposed threshold is detectable in patterns of genetic variation. We used 13 microsatellite markers to analyze 442 samples of Marmosops incanus, a small marsupial that is restricted to areas of native forest at both local and range-wide scales. Samples were gathered from forest patches in three 10,000-ha fragmented landscapes differing in the proportion of remaining forest (30, 50, and 80%). We used the data to assess whether the landscapes differ with respect to genetic diversity (amount of genetic variation) and genetic structure (distribution of genetic variation), thus testing the hypothesis that there is a drastic drop in genetic diversity and a raise in genetic structure in the most deforested landscape (30%). As expected, genetic diversity was lowest and genetic structure most pronounced in the most deforested landscape, while both more forested landscapes were similar with respect to genetic variation. These results are congruent with observed abundance patterns for the studied species and demonstrate that fragmentation thresholds can be detected genetically.
   Assessing movement path recursion of African buffalo in South Africa and application to reserve design Bar-David, S*, Mitrani Department of Desert Ecology, Jacob Blaustein Institutes for Desert Research, Ben Gurion University, Sde Boqer Campus, 84990, Israel ; Bar-David, I, Department of Electrical Engineering, Technion, Israel; Cross, P.C, Northern Rocky Mountain Science Center, U.S. Geological Survey, Bozeman MT 59717; Department of Ecology, Montana State University, Bozeman MT 59717; Ryan, S.J, Department of Anthropology, Stanford University, Stanford, CA 94305 USA; Department of Anthropology, McGill University, Montreal, QC, Canada, H3A 2T7; Knechtel, C.U. , Centre for Wildlife Management, University of Pretoria, Pretoria 0002, South Africa; Getz, W.M , Department of Environmental Science, Policy and Management, University of California, Berkeley; Mammal Research Institute, Department of Zoology and Entomology, University of Pretoria, Pretoria 0002, South Africa
Movement patterns affect population dynamics and persistence. To gain insights into the processes creating movement patterns, we present output from a simple spatial model that simulates movements of large herbivore groups based on minimal parameters: resource availability and rates of resource recovery after a local depletion. We then present new techniques for extracting information from high resolution spatio-temporal Global Positioning Systems data on repeated visits to a particular site/patch (recursions), and apply them to data generated by our model, as well as sets of empirical data on African buffalo (Syncerus caffer) movements collected in Kruger National Park, South Africa. Our analyses of model output provide us with a basis for inferring aspects of the processes governing the production of buffalo recursion patterns. Our analyses of empirical data enabled us to identify sites to which the herds return to. Identification of recursion patches, when combined with patch-related ecological data, should contribute to our understanding of the habitat requirements of large herbivores and of factors governing their space-use patterns. The inclusion of recursion sites should be considered within the “core areas” of nature reserves because of their potential importance for the species dynamics and furthermore for tourism and game within the reserve.
   Dealing with the clandestine nature of wildlife trade market surveys Barber-Meyer, Shannon*, World Wildlife Fund
Illegal international wildlife trade has been estimated to be valued at more than US$ 20 billion with the exact amount unknown due in part to the clandestine nature of the trade. Occupancy methods currently used in wildlife field studies provide a new opportunity to assess the hidden components of wildlife trade market surveys at various scales (e.g., regional, local) and periods (e.g., single season, year, multi-year). These methods differ from traditional presence-absence surveys by incorporating repeat surveys allowing for the likelihood of detecting a species (the probability of detection) to be explicitly estimated. Free user-friendly software has delivered modern occupancy analysis methods to conservation practitioners allowing them to now appropriately address this often false assumption. Occupancy methods can be applied to a variety of wildlife trade market survey investigations including, for examples, single species availability, links between two illegally-traded species (i.e., co-occurrence) and disease occurrence in live-traded specimens. A simple hypothetical example is used to illustrate the importance of accounting for probability of detection in wildlife trade market surveys. As more sophisticated methods such as occupancy and others are applied to wildlife trade market surveys, results will be more robust and defensible and therefore, theoretically more powerful when presented to conservation policy- and decision-makers.
   How effective are protected areas for Australia’s threatened species? Barr, L*, University of Queensland ; Evans, M, University of Queensland; Fuller, R, University of Queensland; Watson, J, University of Queensland; Wilson, K, University of Queensland; Pressey, R, James Cook University; Possingham, H, University of Queensland
Protected areas are believed to be one of the most effective in-situ methods for conserving biodiversity, and hence have become the cornerstones of most national and international strategies for halting the loss of biodiversity. Yet despite their obvious benefits many protected areas are not properly funded or managed and thus only exist as “paper parks”. Additionally even if protected areas are effectively managed, they cannot remove all threats to biodiversity, such as disease. In this presentation we assess how effective protected areas are in stopping threats to Australia’s threatened species under two scenarios; 1) paper park: assume no management (only land clearing is abated); and 2) effective management: threats that can be managed are abated, such as introduced species. We find that 10% of threatened species have all their threats removed by paper parks, whilst 44% of threatened species have all their threats removed with effectively managed protection. We use this information to show where in Australia protection will benefit threatened species the most and then relate this to current protected area coverage and funding. We show that even when protected areas are placed correctly and managed well they are still only part of the solution for conserving threatened biodiversity.
   Life history traits, habitats and conservation status of Central European moths Benes, J*, Inst. Entomology, BC AS, Ceske Budejovice, Czech Republic ; Pavlikova A, Univ. S. Bohemia, Ceske Budejovice, Czech Republic; Kepka P, Univ. S. Bohemia, Ceske Budejovice, Czech Republic; Konvicka M, Inst. Entomology, BC AS & Univ. S. Bohemia, Ceske Budejovice, Czech Republic
Prioritisation of conservation efforts requires a knowledge of threats to individual species. This is hard to obtain even for well-researched taxa, and practically missing for little known taxa, such as most of insects. We constructed matrix of 179 binarily-coded life history traits covering resource use of all developmental stages but not containing explicit information on habitats, for 164 species of macro-moths (less the diverse families Geometridae and Noctuidae) occurring in Central Europe. PCA ordination returned five distinct clusters of the moths, three habitat-based (species of close canopy woodlands, open canopy woodlands, and grasslands), one phylogeny-based (Lithosiinae arctiids) and one mixed (grassland hawk moths). Recently published (Benes et al., 2010) distribution atlas for the same moths, based on nearly 150 000 records from the last 150 years (Benes et al., 2009), allowed a direct comparison between threat status and habitat use. Threatened and extinct species prevail among moths inhabiting open canopy woodlands and grasslands, whereas species of close canopy woodlands are not threatened. There is strong phylogenetic signal, as threatened species belong to Lasiocampidae, Arctiidae and Lymantriidae, whereas Notodontidae tend to be safe. Our approach provides an insight into traits associated with threat in a little known insect group, pointing in the same time to the profound 20th century changes of Central European habitats.
   Spatial congruence between biodiversity and ecosystem services in South Africa Benis Egoh*, Pretoria University ; Belinda Reyers, CSIR; Dave Richardson, Stellenbosch University; Mathieu Rouget, Pretoria University; Michael Bode, University of Melbourn
Spatial congruence between biodiversity and ecosystem services in South Africa Ecosystems services sustain humans all over the world. The unsustainable use of ecosystem services around the world has led to widespread degradation which now threatens human’s health and livelihoods. Although the maintenance of ecosystem services is often used to justify biodiversity conservation actions, it is still unclear how ecosystem services relate to different aspects of biodiversity and to what extent the conservation of biodiversity will ensure the provision of services. The aim of this study was to find out whether biodiversity priorities, biomes, species richness and vegetation diversity hotspots co-occur in space with ecosystem services. The distribution of the ranges and hotspots of five ecosystem services (surface water supply, water flow regulation, carbon storage, soil accumulation and soil retention) was assessed in South African biomes. Coincidence, overlap and correlation analyses were used to assess spatial congruence between ecosystem services and species richness (plants and animals) and vegetation diversity hotspots. The grassland and savanna biomes contained significant amounts of all five ecosystem services. There was moderate overlap and a generally positive but low correlation between ecosystem services hotspots and species richness and vegetation diversity hotspots. Species richness was mostly higher in the hotspots of water flow regulation and soil accumulation than would be expected by chance. The water services showed different levels of congruence with species richness hotspots and vegetation diversity hotspot. These results indicate that actions taken to conserve biodiversity in South Africa will also protect certain ecosystem services and ecosystem services can be used to strengthen biodiversity conservation in some instances.
   Fire History, Insect Outbreaks, Tree Rings, Stands History and Beetle Biodiversity Bergeron, Colin*, University of Alberta ; Volney, Jan, Canadian Forest Service
Coarse filter approach to biodiversity conversation in managed forests requires comprehension of landscape patterns sustaining this biodiversity. Spatial and temporal arrangement of stand characteristics largely driven by past and current disturbances provides a diversity of habitats suitable for particular native species. An accurate knowledge of actual stands origin and evolution gained through historical disturbance reconstruction is therefore crucial in order to implement coarse filter conservation efforts in managed forested lands. Using dendrochronology, we reconstructed disturbance history in 200 sites covering 8420 hectares of mixedwood forest at the EMEND (Ecosystem Management Emulating Natural Disturbance) research site. Analysis of fire scarred trees revealed fires events that happened ca. 1844, 1857, 1878, 1897, and 1917. The tree age data and the frequency of fires scars indicate that fire events of 1857 and 1878 are at the origin of the largest part of the landscape. Evidences of defoliation by Forest Tent Caterpillar, Large Aspen Tortrix and Larch Sawfly were also detected respective host tree. Stand history reflected in recent tree ring growth contribute to explain a portion of the modern beetles biodiversity patterns sampled in these same sites. North facing slopes affected by low severity fires sustain late successional balsam fir and beetles population and forest management must allow special attention to these areas.
   Plant species diversity patterns along an elevational gradient on the western escarpment of the Great Rift Valley, northern Ethiopia Betemariam, EA*, Universtiy of Bonn ; Denich, M, Universtiy of Bonn
This study examines patterns of plant species diversity and turnover along an elevational gradient (1000 - 2760 m) on the western escarpment of the Great Rift Valley, northern Ethiopia. Vegetation data were collected using 29 plots (50 m x 50 m) established at 100-m elevation intervals. A total of 130 species belonging to 59 families were recorded. Species diversity has humped relationship with elevation, which peaked at mid-elevation (1900-2200 m). Cluster and indicator species analyses yielded four plant communities: Juniperus procera ― Clutia lanceolata (2400-2760) m, Olea europaea subsp. cuspidata ― Abutilon longicuspe (1900-2300 m), Dracaena ombet ― Acacia etbaica (1400-800 m), and Acacia mellifera ― Dobera glabra (1000-1300 m). The first ordination axis is significantly related (R2 = 0.97) with elevation, suggesting that elevation clearly partitioned the plant communities. Both the Whittakeru2019s (βw = 2.7) and the mean Wilson and Shmida's (βT = 0.6) beta diversity values indicate medium species turnover along the elevational gradient. We also highlighted conservation priority, emphasizing the urgency of conserving the forest remnants in northern Ethiopia to achieve local, national and international biodiversity conservation goals.
   Extent and spatial pattern of snags and contributions to stand structure and species diversity in a dry Afromontane forest in northern Ethiopia Betemariam, EA*, University of Bonn ; Tsegaye, D, University of Norway
Dead standing trees (snags) of the two keystone species Juniperus procera and Olea europaea subsp. cuspidata were frequently observed in a dry Afromontane forest remnant in northern Ethiopia. The objectives of this study were (1) to quantify the extent and spatial patterns of snags of J. procera and O. europaea subsp. cuspidata along an elevation gradient and aspect, and (2) to determine the influence of mass tree die-off the two species on the overall stand structure and species diversity. The percentages of snags were high for both J. procera (56.8  7.1%) and O. europaea subsp. cuspidata (60.2  5.4%). Percentages of snags decreased with increasing elevationExcluding snags of the two species, total stand density and basal area were reduced by 30 and 44%, respectively. However, mass tree die-off of the two species did not influence species diversity. Mass tree die-off the two keystone species is a critical concern for the management of the remaining dry Afromontane forests in northern Ethiopia. The stand in lower elevations and south-east aspects contain higher percentage of snags and need more assisted restoration.
   Flood Plain Analysis And Risk Assessment Of Lothar Khola Bikram Manandhar*, Institute of Forestry, Pokhara, Nepal ; Prof.M. K. Balla, Institute of Forestry, Pokhara, Nepal; Dr.R. Awal, Kyoto University, Japan; Associate Proff. B. M. Pradhan, Institute of Forestry, Pokhara, Nepal
This study aims to find out the extent of floodplain for flood discharge of different return periods using one dimensional hydraulic model HEC-RAS, and Hec-GeoRAS to inference between HEC-RAS and ArcView GIS. The study of Lothar Khola catchment area of 170 sq. km., which lies between Chitwan and Makawanpur District of Nepal. Triangulated Irregular Network (TIN) was prepared from contour and spot elevations in ArcView GIS. Required data sets was prepared in HEC-GeoRAS, and imported in HEC-RAS. In HEC-RAS, boundary conditions, flood discharges for different return periods were inputted. Steady flow analysis was done for the results. Approach developed by Gilard (1996) was used for flood risk assessment. Area inundated by 2, 10, 50, 100 and 200 years return period flood was 23.0, 23.9, 24.6, 24.9 and 25.2 sq.km., respectively. The classification of flood depth area shows most of the flooding area has water depth greater than 3m. The assessment of the flood area shows that large percentage (> 40 %) of vulnerable area lies on sand area followed by forest, cultivation area, etc. Also, flood area increases with flood intensity. Flooding of cultivation land indicates potential bother in food production and negative effects on the livelihoods of local people.
   Conservation threats to high altitude mammals in Pir-Panjal Himalayan range, Himachal Pradesh, India. Bipan Chand Rathore*, Himachal Pradesh University Shimla
The Pir-Panjal Himalayan range locally called Pangi range is bestowed with varied landscape features that provide multitude of habitats to a diverse array of floral and faunal communities including many species of wild ungulates, pheasants and two species of bear. Several factors have led to low abundance and poor conservation status of ungulates, mammals and rare medicinal plants in this region. The range has undergone rapid degradation, fragmentation and loss of wildlife habitat due to poaching and excessive livestock grazing especially sheep and goat in the alpine and sub-alpine areas. Of all the habitats in this region, the sub-alpine forests have undergone maximum degradation and fragmentation owing to anthropogenic activities such as illegal collection of non timber forest produce including mushroom, medicinal plants, poaching, livestock grazing by nomadic shepherds and Gujjar communities have led to low animals densities in the range. Poaching for meat, skin and other products has lead to local extinctions of many species in many parts of the range. As a result, many species of medicinal plants and animals is now confined to some isolated pockets in most of this range. The information on status, distribution and conservation threats to high altitude mammals like Himalayan brown bear(Ursus arctos isabellinus), Himalayan Tahr (Hemitragus jemlahicus), Ibex (Capra ibex sibirica), Himalayan musk deer (Moschus chrysogaster) and Snow Leopard Uncia uncia were studied by conducting observations and informal interviews of migratory shepherds and gujjar communities during May 2008 to October 2009.The poster aims to highlight the various threats, conservation implications, current status and distribution of high altitude mammals and biodiversity in this region and recommendations to combat these threats have been made. (POSTER PRESENTATION)
   Coordinated action is vital for effective multiple organisation conservation planning Bode, M*, University of Melbourne ; Probert, W, University of Queensland; Turner, W, Conservation International; Wilson, KA, University of Queensland; Venter, O, University of Queensland
The urgency and scale of the world’s ecological crises has led to a dramatic increase in the number of conservation organisations. This diversity of organizations and objectives in conservation is poised to increase dramatically in the twenty-first century, as new objectives such as ecosystem services and human development attract additional funding and agencies to conservation. Unfortunately, systematic conservation planning implicitly assumes that a single actor implements the optimal plan. We formulate a game-theoretic multi-organisation model of systematic conservation planning, to investigate how conservation outcomes are affected by autonomous implementing organisations with differing objectives. We explore the implications of uncoordinated conservation actions, and demonstrate that outcomes are most suboptimal when the objectives of different organisations have low spatial correlation. However, if uncoordinated actions affect the price of land, the influence of correlation is reversed, with highly correlated objectives resulting in the worst outcomes. Finally, “free-riding” behaviour leads to poor outcomes for all participating organisations, but may be difficult to avoid. These results highlight the issue of multiple implementing conservation organisations, and show how organisations’ divergent objectives can influence both conservation outcomes and organisations’ willingness to cooperate.
   Supporting Conservation though Difficult Economic Times: the National Natural Landmarks Program Rises to the Challenge Brooks, MA*, National Park Service
Economic hardships around the globe have reduced funding and staffing necessary to support many important natural areas. In the U.S., these challenges have been accompanied by changes in government regulations, reduced resource protection staff, and threats to fragile natural areas that include intense human use and resource extraction. The National Natural Landmarks Program (NNLP), which is administered by the U.S.D.O.I. National Park Service, works with private and public land owners to recognize and voluntarily conserve resource areas that are considered nationally significant, regardless of their ownership. The NNLP is small, flexible, and can respond quickly to a partners need – this has included brokering of technical services, writing grant applications, and providing testimony and letters of support to address threats to areas from development, public works projects, mining, or increased recreational use. The NNLP also monitors conditions at designated Landmarks and keeps long-term records of their conditions, which can be especially useful for private sites that are not usually monitored. Recognition by the U.S. government, through the NNLP, has never been more critical than it is today, providing support to a wide variety of partners at 586 nationally significant sites in the U.S. and its territories.
   Protecting lives and livelihoods: Oyster restoration on the U.S. Gulf Coast Brown, C.*, The Nature Conservancy
Intertidal oyster reefs are common features in coastal Louisiana and have been heavily exploited, thus increasing the susceptibility of marshes to shoreline erosion. This is of special concern given coastal wetlands are being lost at 25 square miles per year. To demonstrate the efficacy of reefs in abating shoreline erosion, TNC is building reefs along 3.4 miles of coastline in two locations – Grand Isle and St. Bernard Marshes. The potential for oyster reefs to protect shorelines and provide other ecosystem services has been recognized for some time though underutilized as a conservation strategy. Vigorously growing oyster reefs can keep up with relative sea level rise. They provide fisheries habitat and nutrient cycling. They provide a source of larvae which is important in these areas of high commercial production. They also stabilize banks and shallow subtidal sediments, thus reducing turbidity. This “green infrastructure” also benefits human communities by improving Grand Isle’s resiliency to tropical storms, winter storms, and flooding. Protection of the St. Bernard Marsh complex will protect a valuable fisheries resource and a first line of defense against storm surge. Landward of the St. Bernard Marsh are several fishing communities that become increasingly vulnerable as this marsh diminishes.
   When is a generalist a specialist? The story of the Feather-legged Assassin Bug Bulbert, MW*, Macquarie University ; Herberstein, ME, Macquarie University; Allen, A, Macquarie University
Our study shows that the current criteria used to define a predators’ prey population is not effective for all predators. Currently a prey population is defined by taxonomic units such as species, family etc. Taxonomic descriptions however, do not consider behavioural traits. While this general approach basically assumes all individuals within that taxonomic unit have equal probability of being eaten given the same conditions. We challenged this approach and its assumptions using the Feather-legged Assassin bug. This bug feeds on a wide variety of ant species and given its apparent diet breadth, it is defined as an ant-eating generalist. Yet this animal has a highly specialised predatory strategy that contradicts its designation as a generalist predator. These bugs require ants to attack, grab and even sting the bugs’ hind legs, before the bug will attack. Given this strategy requires the ant to attack we tested the aggression levels of ant individuals using a suite of experiments, examining variation within and between species. Aggression levels varied considerably between ant species, with the extent of aggression predicting the likelihood of an ant species being eaten. More extensive experimentation of a common prey species revealed individuals were only susceptible to predation if they had certain behavioural traits. Only ant individuals that were moderately active and aggressive attacked the bugs. Our results indicate this bug is not a generalist but a specialist of ant individuals that have an aggressive temperament. This group of individuals represent a reduced pool of available prey.
   Experiments in Translocation for an Endangered Australian Lizard Bull, M*, Flinders University ; Ebrahimi, M, Flinders University
Translocation is often considered in conservation management of endangered animals. Normally individuals are moved to a site perceived to be suitable, and then monitored to determine translocation success. Previous reviews of translocations have suggested that failures are common. The pygmy bluetongue lizard (Tiliqua adelaidensis), an endangered Australian skink, has persisted in a few isolated fragments of native grassland, that are secure for the short-term. We have time to plan conservation strategies with care. We ran replicated experiments that simulated translocation. We released lizards into the centres of four large cages, with refuge burrows and potential release habitat, surrounded by less hospitable matrix. We video monitored lizard behaviour over three week experiments. Movement from the central environment to the cage perimeter represented dispersal from the release site (and unsuccessful translocation). We aimed to discover the set of conditions most likely to reduce this dispersal. We found that additional food, additional grass density, and additional burrows all contributed, but that physical confinement to the release site for 2-4 days was most effective in reducing subsequent dispersal. These experiments provide a rigorous foundation for future plans to move lizard populations in response to changing climate or conflicts with land-use development.
   Carbon forestry projects: a key tool for restoration of forest and biodiversity Chakraborty,D*, Amity University ; Kala,JC, National Environment Appellate Authority, India
Climate change is now undoubtedly a global phenomenon, effecting community and biodiversity worldwide. Forests are sinks as well as source of carbon emissions and estimated to 638 gigatonnes (Gt) of carbon globally. Increasing this sink by even modest amounts could provide additional protection from future climate change. Carbon sequestration projects through land use, land-use change and forestry (LULUCF) activities could demonstrate a win-win situation from the point of view of climate change and sustainable development. If properly designed these projects can conserve and increase carbon stock and at the same time improve rural livelihoods. International efforts on climate change mitigation under Kyoto Protocol offers for Clean Development mechanism (CDM), which is of particular importance to the developing world and can be very well utilized to provide impetus to the efforts of the local communities in conservation of biodiversity. On the other hand REDD and REDD+ projects under compliance and voluntary carbon markets are also very promising. Due to high technicalities and lack of awareness these projects have not been able to make the kind impact it was supposed to have. This paper seeks to address how carbon forestry projects can be utilized for restoration of the forests and its biodiversity.
   Canine distemper virus impact on lion-cheetah interactions in the Serengeti National Park Chauvenet, Alienor*, Institute of Zoology (ZSL)/ Imperial College ; Pettorelli, Nathalie, Institute of Zoology (ZSL); Durant, Sarah, Institute of Zoology (ZSL)/ WCS; Coulson, Tim, Imperial College London
The impact of human-induced threats on biodiversity is a constant concern for the conservation community. In the plains of the Serengeti National Park (SNP), both the African lion, Panthera leo, and cheetah, Acinonyx jubatus, persist in small populations. The lion population is vulnerable to a disease called canine distemper virus (CDV) which is transmitted from the growing population of domestic dogs surrounding the park. Cheetah abundance is limited by lions as they tend to kill cheetah cubs if they detect them. Removing the pressure of CDV by vaccinating dogs would benefit the lion population but before considering this solution, the impact on the cheetah population needs to be assessed. We built and coupled an individual-based model for the cheetahs and a matrix population model for the lions and investigated the consequences of different CDV outbreak rates on cheetah population dynamics. Our cheetah individual-based model explains 52% of the variability in observed cheetah abundance in the plains of the SNP. Simulations highlight that if the CDV is eradicated, the chance of the cheetah population going extinct in the next 60 years is almost twice as high as with the current outbreak rate. This project outlines possible shortcomings of species-based human-interventions.
   Land Cover Changes in Eldama Ravine Catchment Using Remote Sensing and Geographic Information Chege, M.G*, United Nations Environmental Programme ; Theuri M, United Nations Environmental Programme; Wajau, F.W, United Nations Environmental Programme
Land cover changes in catchment areas, particularly loss of forest cover and conversions to agricultural settlements, are of global and national concern. Among other things, such changes can lead to reduction in stream discharges, increased erosion and loss of biodiversity, which may alter the functioning and values of affected ecosystems. In order to manage and control land cover changes to avert these negative impacts, it is important to understand the patterns of cover changes. This study used three Landsat images acquired in 1975, 1986 and 2005 together with primary data, to map the extent and pattern of land cover changes in a section of the Eldama Ravine catchment in Kenya. These images were digitally classified and the resulting maps analyzed with a GIS to quantify the change patterns. The results of the analysis showed that between 1975 and 2005, natural forest decreased by about 65.43%, artificial forest increased by about 200% between 1985 and 2005 since no artificial forest were present in 1975. Build up areas and agriculture increased recorded increases of about 197.38% and 62.22%, respectively between 1975 and 2005. The study identified population growth, natural causes such as climatic change and poverty as causes of the changes in land use and land cover in the catchment area. The study recommends specific practices for short term mitigation measures such as reforestation and change in land use patterns for long term measures.
   Endangered Species Protection on Private Land: Assessing the Effectiveness of Habitat Conservation Plans. Christian Langpap, Oregon State University ; Joe Kerkvliet*, The Wilderness Society
Implementation of the Endangered Species Act on private land has been controversial due to the conflict between species preservation and economic development. Congress amended the law to allow the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) to allow economic activity when a landowner prepares a habitat conservation plan (HCP). HCPs have also generated controversy. FWS claims that HCPs have balanced species’ needs and landowners’ rights, and the approach is supported by prominent members of the environmental community. However, many scientists and other members of environmental groups have expressed skepticism about the effectiveness of HCPs. No systematic assessment of the effectiveness of the HCP policy has been carried out to date. We provide the first systematic empirical analysis of the effectiveness of HCPs in promoting species recovery. Our results provide evidence that HCPs have a significant positive impact on recovery. We also find evidence that the recovery benefits are larger when species have relatively more, larger plans than when they have fewer, smaller plans. Finally, our results indicate that multispecies plans that cover relatively more species are less effective than plans which include relatively fewer species. This has important implications in light of the emphasis placed by FWS in promoting multispecies plans.
   Urbanization does not benefit Prairie bats Coleman, Joanna*, University of Calgary
I addressed three gaps in urban ecology research, which lacks sufficient attention to grassland biomes, autecological effects, and non-avian vertebrates. I hypothesized that due to greater urban availability of roosts and of insects and the urban heat island, Prairie bats exhibit increased abundance, diversity and fitness in the city. I assessed bat assemblage structure, foraging rates, fitness and prey availability in urban, transition and rural sites in and near Calgary, Alberta. Urban bats were more abundant, but least diverse, a pattern driven by Myotis lucifugus, which was numerically dominant throughout my study area, but especially in the city and least of all in the transition zone. Increased urban abundance of M. lucifugus was unrelated to prey availability or to foraging rates, and urbanization did not enhance its fitness. Rather, transition zone bats were in the best body condition and had the highest reproductive success. I reject my hypothesis and propose that urban and rural M. lucifugus exhibit increased use of human, as opposed to natural, roosts, in turn increasing colony size and population density. This could increase ectoparasite levels and/or food competition, thereby reducing fitness. Whatever the cause, the fact that M. lucifugus was most abundant in the city where its fitness was lowest, may indicate that Prairie cities are population sinks, but mortality data needed to show the existence of source-sink dynamics are especially hard to obtain for bats.
   Animal bio-economies: North America's "rotten trade" in exotic pets Collard, R-C*, Department of Geography, University of British Columbia
Legal and illegal wildlife trade is flourishing worldwide, generating hundreds of billions of dollars annually and involving the movement of billions of live and dead animals per year. This paper focuses on the legal trade in live animals to the United States, the world's largest consumer of wildlife, and Canada, a smaller but still considerable wildlife importer and exporter. Collectively, the US and Canada are estimated to import hundreds of millions of live wild animals per year, over ninety percent of which are traded as exotic pets. The markets within which these live animals are circulated and exchanged are constituted by complex socio-material networks of human and nonhuman entities. There is a critical, urgent need to explore the sites, entities and processes that facilitate the circulation and exchange of wildlife, and the ethical issues this trade raises. This paper discusses preliminary research findings and a theoretical framework for a PhD dissertation project that will “follow” live wildlife traded to and from North America. “Rotten trade” is defined by Jagdish Bhagwati as legal trade that is nonetheless hazardous to human health, the environment, and/or governance. I argue that North America's exotic pet trade is an under-acknowledged, under-regulated and poorly-monitored rotten trade that operates through a simultaneous commodification of and disregard for animal life, driving species loss worldwide.
   Data Basin: Spatial Data, Tools, and Social Networks to Address Conservation Challenges Comendant, T.*, Conservation Biology Institute ; Strittholt, J., Conservation Biology Institute; Ward, B. C., Conservation Biology Institute
Data Basin (www.databasin.org) is an online system that connects users with spatial datasets, tools, and networks of scientists and practitioners. Data Basin's tools are designed to meet specific needs of scientists, managers, and policy-makers, yet Data Basin does not require technical training. Data Basin is designed for people interested in integrating spatial data into daily work (e.g., inquiry, problem-solving, communicating messages). Data Basin provides a wide range of functionalities: 1) private workspace to organize datasets and maps; 2) extensive documentation (e.g., metadata, reports) for datasets; 3) capability to upload data and share it publicly or keep private 4) ability to download publicly shared data; 5) visualization tools that combine datasets and make customized maps; 6) searchable profiles of users, including science and policy experts; 7) searchable galleries (collections of datasets and maps); 8) user-defined working groups for collaborating and reviewing specific issues; and, 9) focal topics of interest to Data Basin users (called Centers). The Climate Center contains datasets, maps, galleries, people, groups, and analytical tools specific to climate impacts and adaptation. Data Basin brings users together in new ways to explore, publish, visualize, and analyze data, and in doing so, advances conservation efforts across sectors, industries, and disciplines.
   The mating system of the incubator bird: Malleefowl (Leipoa ocellata) Cope, T.M*, Department of Zoology, University of Melbourne, Victoria, Australia ; Mulder, R, Department of Zoology, University of Melbourne, Victoria, Australia; Donnellan, S, South Australia Museum, Adelaide, Australia; Dunn, P, Department of Biological Sciences, University of Wisconsin- Milwaukee, USA
Malleefowl (Leipoa ocellata) are endemic to Australia and are unique in that they are the only species of megapode to occur outside of humid tropical regions. The male and female build a complex nesting mound out of sand for incubating their eggs. These unusual birds have declined greatly over the past 25 years due to land fragmentation hence many populations are now small and at risk of extinction. The understanding of genetic variation within a population, as well as the genetic contribution of individuals to future generations, is essential for conservation and management of that species. As part of a wider study on the conservation genetics of Malleefowl, this study focuses on the mating system of this species. Malleefowl have been noted as socially monogamous. However, the male and female spend considerable time apart and the male does not guard his fertile mate. Microsatellite genotyping was used to determine the relationship of chicks at each nest mound to the attending male and female. This study presents the first evidence of molecular paternity in Malleefowl. These results will help to develop conservation strategies for population management of this endangered species.
   New Culture Protocol for Sea Turtle Lymphocytes Davila, J.I.*, Student ; Hernandez, J., Profesor; Jauregui, A., Profesor
Optimization of culture techniques for sea turtles is essential for providing cytogenetic, marine conservation biology, ecotoxicology and inmunogenetic research for these Testudines. Looking to complement cytogenetic information of Eretmochelys imbricata, 4ml samples of peripheral blood were taken from two adult females, two adult males and two juveniles (undetermined sex) from Colombian Caribbean, and stored in sodium heparin tubes. A lymphocyte isolation from total blood with Ficoll was performed before culture. 5ml culture conditions to obtain mitotic cells were: Phytohemagglutinin-M form (2%), Fetal Bovine Serum (20%), isolated lymphocyte (10%), RPMI 1640 medium (3,7ml). Antibiotics were not used. Harvest collection of mitotic cells was performed around 96 hours after mitotic stimulation, following the incubation period, 200μl colcemid (50μg/ml) were added for 45min (37ºC). The cells were treated with pre-heat KCL 0,075M (30min to 37ºC), followed by fixation in 3:1 carnoy´s solution (methanol/acetic acid). The fixative solution was changed three times. Metaphase chromosome spreads were obtained by an air-dry method and stained with 5% Giemsa solution. The karyotype consist of 2n=56 chromosomes, as reported previously. Tentative first classification of all 28 pairs of chromosomes according centromere position is here presented.
   Protecting a moving target at the top of the world: the habitat requirements of high-altitude flamingos in the Andes mountains Davison, M.A., Cornell University ; Moslemi, J.*, Cornell University; Villalobos, M.S., Universidad Mayor de San Andres; Fitzpatrick, J.W., Cornell University
Attempts to protect imperiled species must be rooted in a sound understanding of species habitat requirements. In the case of organisms that exist in remote mountain regions, gathering basic information on foraging and nesting habitat can prove difficult and require innovative solutions for data collection. In the altiplano of Bolivia, we used remote sensing and limnological sampling techniques to determine the location and characteristics of high-use flamingo lakes. We compared a set of 3 high-use and 3 low-use lakes to assess the habitat parameters associated with prime flamingo habitat. We quantified flamingo visitation rates among the 6 lakes and measured several physical, chemical, and biological parameters to distinguish patterns been high- and low-use lakes. Preliminary results suggest that flamingo visitation rates are related to algal community composition and chemical characteristics of lakes, but not algal abundance. Understanding the characteristics that constitute prime habitat is vital for informing efforts to preserve high-altitude flamingo species, which are the most rare flamingos in the world. These once-isolated birds are now facing threats from mining operations, unregulated ecotourism, and climate change. Knowledge of the limnological parameters associated with high flamingo visitation will provide a baseline for protecting aquatic processes that sustain them.
   Maintaining Options for Biodiversity and for People Through the Conservation of AZE Sites DE SILVA, N*, Conservation International ; Foster, MN, Conservation International
In 2010, the Alliance for Zero Extinction (AZE; a consortium of over 60 environmental organizations in 22 countries) will launch a systematic update of sites which are the most urgent global priorities for conservation. Each AZE site represents the last remaining refuge for one or more species listed as Endangered or Critically Endangered on the IUCN Red List. The revision of AZE sites provides an opportunity to demonstrate the direct link between biodiversity value and cultural and spiritual value. Through the global expert review process for AZE sites, we are gathering information on the overlap of these sites with sacred natural sites, defined as areas of land or water having special spiritual significance to peoples and communities (Wild and MacLeod, 2008). The resulting analysis will comprise a first step in an effort introduced last year to map the overlap of sacred sites with globally significant areas for biodiversity conservation. In many cases, local knowledge and traditions have contributed to the maintenance of biodiversity in such sites over centuries or millennia. Supporting such traditions and conserving sites that are both AZE sites and sacred natural sites provide a means of respecting cultural liberty and in maintaining options for the people that live in and around these areas. At the same time, the conservation of these AZE sites would provide a means of safeguarding species that have run out of other options for their continued survival.
   A Framework for Assessing Coral Reef Dive Tourism Vulnerability to Climate Change. Dearden, P*, University of Victoria ; Manopawitr, P, University of Victoria
Dive tourism can assist in reef conservation as divers are attracted to intact and diverse ecosystems and income from the dive industry can provide communities with an incentive to protect such ecosystems. Little attention has been paid to the potential effects of climate change on dive tourism and the conservation of coral reefs. The impacts of climate change will vary markedly from place to place as a result of the differing characteristics of the reefs and the stresses they will encounter. The impact on diving will also differ according to the nature of the reefs in the area under consideration, the type of diving on the reefs and the adaptive capacity of the communities and countries in which the diving takes place. This paper examines reef vulnerability and suggests a framework for looking at diver and dive industry response within the context of the social-adaptive capacity of various countries. Some dive tourism locations will be relatively resistant to the impacts of global change, others much less so. Identification of these different situations and devising optimal management interventions appropriate for different contexts should be undertaken on a proactive, not reactive, basis.
   Attitudes to small game hunting management in Central Spain: implications for hunting-conservation conflict resolution Delibes-Mateos, M*, Instituto de Investigación en Recursos Cinegéticos - IREC (CSIC-UCLM-JCCM). Ciudad Real. Spain ; Estrada. A, Instituto de Investigación en Recursos Cinegéticos - IREC (CSIC-UCLM-JCCM). Ciudad Real. Spain; Díaz, S, Instituto de Investigación en Recursos Cinegéticos - IREC (CSIC-UCLM-JCCM). Ciudad Real. Spain; Arroyo, B, Instituto de Investigación en Recursos Cinegéticos - IREC (CSIC-UCLM-JCCM). Ciudad Real. Spain
In Spain, hunting is a controversial economic activity, perceived as obsolete and anti-nature by some sectors of the society, or as a critical element of the ecosystem by others. In addition, there are concerns about the impact of specific hunting management (predator control, releases of farm-reared game, etc.) on biodiversity. We carried out 7 focus groups on different stakeholder groups (game managers, hunters, non-hunters and anti-hunting ONG members) in central Spain to explore their attitudes toward nature and hunting, including motives for hunting, role and identity of hunters, and concepts about “proper” vs. “improper” (including illegal) hunting. Initial analyses show that non-hunters value landscapes and agriculture as important from local nature, whereas wildlife appears as non-important. In contrast, wildlife, and game in particular, are the most valued part of nature for hunters and game managers. They consider hunting as a critical part of nature balance, and that anti-hunters do not understand hunting or nature. However, even within the hunting world certain types of management and hunting are considered as non acceptable. Non-hunters, on their side, consider that illegal activities are widespread among the hunting world, although they acknowledge also a lack of knowledge on current legislation. We discuss the implications of these results for among-stakeholder relationships, and how to overcome communication barriers between them.
   Dark Sky Preserve Program in Canada Dick, Robert*, RASC, U. Ottawa ; Goering, Peter, Muskoka Heritage Foundation; Bidwell, Tony, Prof. E, Queens University; Welch, David, Parks Canada - Retired
The Canadian Dark Sky Preserve Program (DSP) is based on a practical lighting protocol and grass roots support. This paper outlines the lighting protocol and the lighting techniques that achieve the necessary results, and how local support has allowed the expansion of the Program across the country. The increase number of DSPs over the last 10 years has resulted from its inclusive nature, which works with existing park infrastructure to minimize the cost and effort of the certification process. It is based on park manager acceptance of the underlying philosophy of habitat protection, along with local grass roots support. Eleven DSPs are now certified across Canada, with several others to be certified in 2010, protecting large areas of the country from the ecological effects of light pollution. It has benefited from a rational lighting protocol developed through cooperation between Parks Canada and the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada. This protocol draws on research into the sensitivity of wildlife to artificial lighting. It takes advantage of outreach programs that educate park visitors, and enlists the involvement of local cities and citizens in the reduction of regional sky glow.
   Space Doe, JA*, student
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   Intra- and interannual spatio-temporal dynamics of Saiga antelope habitat selection in Southern Russia. Dubinin, M.*, University of Wisconsin-Madison ; Lushchekina, A., Institute of Ecology and Evolution, Russian Academy of Sciences; Kummerle, T, University of Wisconsin-Madison; Radeloff, VC, University of Wisconsin-Madison
Habitat loss and degradation are the main causes of extinctions and the conservation of endangered species requires knowledge on species’ habitat selection. Species may change their distribution dynamically in response to changing environmental conditions. Our goal was to test if habitat selection was different among months and years for the endangered saiga antelope (Saiga tatarica). Saiga inhabits the steppes of Central Asia and Southern Russia. Due to massive socio-economic changes, and increasing fire frequency, vegetation is changing rapidly. We used satellite-based vegetation measures, human variables, and Saiga occurrence data from 2004-2007 to assess: a) spatio-temporal dynamics of Saiga habitat selection; b) factors affecting Saiga habitat selection; and c) the effect of vegetation change on saiga distributions. To analyze habitat selection in time, we used time-series-analyses and to map habitat use, we used MaxEnt. We found substantial difference in habitat preferences by Saiga both within and among years. Vegetation productivity was a particularly important driver of habitat selection immediately after calving season. During peak productivity the importance of vegetation was lower and saiga was often found away from the most productive areas. Saiga selected grassy vegetation preferably in spring and shrubby vegetation in fall and winter. Given ongoing widespread replacement of shrubs by grasses due to increasing fires this might be of a conservation concern.
   Historical roots and theoretical foundations of Russian conservationism Efremenko Dmitry*, Institute for Scientific Information on Social Sciences, Moscow, Russia
The paper analyses both early environmental ideas and practices of conservationism in the late Imperial Russian and early Bolshevik periods (1880-1930-es). The environmental ideas were: 1) influenced by the works of Western conservationists (J. P. Marsh, German conservationists); 2) largely shaped by the rise of the influence of the scientific community whose members believed that natural resources should be managed “better” to improve the people’s lives (scientific management of fish, forest and water resources, the establishment of the nation’s first nature preserves). The paper reviews the first practices of conservation and environmental protection in Russia including the expansion of the network of zapovedniki (nature preserves). At the time, the key figure of environmental thinking and practice was Vladimir Vernadsky. According to Vernadsky, the biosphere is a natural product and a factor of evolution of the Earth the external coverings of which: litosphere, hydrosphere and atmosphere were generated and function under the direct influence of living substance. Vernadsky considered mankind as a part of the biosphere capable to change radically all biospheric system. The author concludes that the ideology of modern Russian conservationism is based on biocentric reinterpretation of initially anthropocentric Vernadsky’s ideas.
   Species and Habitat Protection under Canada's SARA and U.S. ESA: the Good, the Bad and the Ugly Elgie, S*, Univ of Ottawa, Institute of Environment
Key strengths and weaknesses of Canada's Species At Risk Act (SARA) and the US' ESA in i) listing of species at risk, and ii) identifying and protecting species' critical habitat. How have the Acts been applied. What has worked well; what hasn't. Options for improvements; alternative regulatory approaches. The role of the CBD.
   Tropical biodiversity monitoring programs are necessary (and possible) Ferrer-Paris, JR, Instituto Venezolano de Investigaciones Científicas ; Rodríguez, JP, Instituto Venezolano de Investigaciones Científicas; Good, T, Clark University of Australia; Rodríguez-Clark, KM, Instituto Venezolano de Investigaciones Científicas; Sánchez-Mercado, A*, Instituto Venezolano de Investigaciones Científicas
Tropical biodiversity is threatened, and even basic information about species distribution and abundance is lacking, hindering conservation efforts. The Neotropical Biodiversity Mapping Initiative (NeoMaps) was created to inventory and monitor Neotropical biodiversity with efficiency and scientific rigor. From 2002 to 2010, we developed and implemented protocols for sampling three indicator groups in Venezuela. Executed simultaneously by eight field teams during two one-month field campaigns at ~30 environmentally-stratified transects, butterfly surveys produced 34176 specimens and estimates of distribution and relative abundance in 419 species, while dung beetle surveys generated 47,587 specimens and the same estimates in 214 species. Bird surveys will be completed in March, 2010. Compared with over 60 years of collections in natural history museums, NeoMaps was equally efficient at estimating species richness and distribution at the national level, and was more efficient at estimating relative abundance. Furthermore, our inventories had lower sampling error: per transect, NeoMaps captured ~400% more species, in a fraction of the time. The cost-efficiency of NeoMaps was US$ 3.5 /km2 – an order of magnitude lower than similar studies. With over 2,100 sampling points, 78,000 specimens and 550 species, NeoMaps may be the largest systematic registry for any invertebrate group in any tropical country, and provides a foundation for conservation efforts into the future.
   A Mitogenomic Analysis of the Phylogeography of Elephants Finch, T.*, University of Missouri-Columbia ; Eggert, L.S., University of Missouri-Columbia
In recent years there has been much debate as to whether the African elephant should be listed as two distinct species, the forest elephant (Loxodonta cyclotis) and the savannah elephant (L. africana). Due to the wet and humid conditions in the African forest zone, fossils are not well preserved, thus forcing researchers to rely almost exclusively on molecular techniques to date divergence times. While the savanna elephant’s mitochondrial genome has been sequenced and published, no one has yet sequenced the forest elephant’s, leaving a major gap in the overall picture of the African elephant’s evolutionary history. To help complete the picture we have sequenced both a West and Central African forest elephant’s mitochondrial genome from fecal samples. Using the savanna elephant’s mitochondrial genome as a template, we have analyzed variability within the extant elephants and closely related species. Our analyses provide a better understanding of the divergence times of forest and savanna elephants, and help us answer a taxonomic question of conservation relevance for the African elephant. The unique ecology and densely vegetated habitat of forest elephants make them particularly vulnerable to poaching and habitat loss, and many populations across their range are in peril. Management officials need a more complete understanding of the evolutionary history of their elephants to effectively manage and preserve their populations.
   Detecting admixture of fur farm mink and native mink in Prince William Sound, AK Fleming, MA*, Biology Department and Museum of Southwestern Biology, University of New Mexico, Albuquerque, New Mexico 87131 ; Roby, DD, Oregon Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit, Oregon State University, Corvallis, Oregon 97331; Irons, DB, Migratory Bird Management, U. S. Fish and Wildlife Service, 1011 East Tudor Road Anchorage, Alaska 99503; Bixler, KS, Oregon Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit, Oregon State University, Corvallis, Oregon 97331; Ostrander, EA, National Human Genome Research Institute, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, Maryland 20892; Cook, JA, Biology Department and Museum of Southwestern Biology, University of New Mexico, Albuquerque, New Mexico 87131
Prince William Sound (PWS), Alaska supports native mink on its nearshore islands and mainland, but non-native mink were also introduced to small islands in the 1900s for fur farming. We used a multigene approach to determine whether mink on the Naked Island Archipelago (NIA) were native or introduced via fur farms. Using 309 bp of mtDNA control region (n=135) and 10 microsatellites (n=211), we analyzed samples from 7 PWS localities (including Montague I. where fur farm mink were introduced in 1951), 2 fur farm color phases, and 8-24 localities across North America. MtDNA distinguished mink from eastern and western North America; contemporary fur farm mink had ancestry from both regions. Fur farm ancestry on NIA is evident from the single “eastern” haplotype there (n=9) and nowhere else in the west except Montague I. (1 of 9) and Knight I. (3 of 7), 6 km from the NIA. In contrast, nuclear analyses supported fur farm ancestry for Montague I. (e.g., high allelic richness, 24% of alleles found nowhere else in PWS) but native ancestry for NIA mink (e.g., low allelic richness, 95% of alleles shared with Knight I.). Either there was once a fur farm on the NIA, or admixed mink colonized or were introduced from Knight I. (which had fur farms nearby). Knowledge of the phylogeographic history of mink in North America and PWS was critical to determining the origin of NIA mink, which have decimated seabird colonies there in the last decade.
   Marine biodiversity in the Caribbean UK Overseas Territories: perceived threats and constraints to environmental management. Forster, J.*, University of East Anglia
Islands are considered to be a priority for conservation because of their high levels of endemic biodiversity and their vulnerability to a range of environmental threats. However, the capacity to conserve biodiversity may be influenced by political alliances. Many island states are affiliated to other countries through an ‘overseas territory’ status, which may provide them with access to resources and support mechanisms. For example, the United Kingdom has 12 island Overseas Territories (UKOTs), many of which support biodiversity of high conservation concern. I focus on the Caribbean UKOTs, which are particularly at risk from marine biodiversity loss. I used semi-structured interviews with officials from UK and UKOT governments and non-governmental organisations to investigate perceptions of threats and constraints on environmental management for marine ecosystems. Results demonstrated that climate change is perceived as the greatest future threat to marine ecosystems. However, there are a series of common constraints to conservation efforts including insufficient personnel, limited funding and outdated environmental legislation. In response to these constraints, policy recommendations generated by respondents are proposed. These outline the need for greater financial and personnel support, regional cooperation and capacity building across the Caribbean, and prioritising tackling climate change by UK and UKOT governments.
   Long-term Trends of Organochlorine Pollutants, Occupancy and Reproductive Success in Peregrine Falcons Breeding near Rankin Inlet, Nunavut, Canada Franke, A*, Canadian Circumpolar Institute ; Setterington, M.A., Environmental Dynamics Inc; Court, G.S., Government of Alberta; Birkholz, D., ALS Laboratory Group
The historical decline of the peregrine falcon (Falco peregrinus) in North America was mainly attributed to reproductive failure associated with persistent organochlorine pollutants, in particular DDT (dichloro-diphenyl-trichloroethane). It is generally assumed that declining trends in pesticide loads will be accompanied by a corresponding increase in productivity. In this study we concurrently measured occupancy, reproductive performance and pesticide loads of breeding-aged adults on territory near Rankin Inlet, Nunavut between 1982 and 2009. Our findings indicated that reproductive success of peregrine falcons in our study population declined despite concomitant reductions in pesticide loads, and that approximately 3 fewer territories were on average occupied annually between 2002 and 2009 than were occupied between 1982 and 1989. In addition, the average number of young banded annually in the study area between 2002 and 2009 was approximate half that banded annually between 1982 and 1989. These results indicate that in recent years fewer pairs have attempted to breed and, in addition, those that were successful raised fewer young to age of banding. In general, the pesticides examined in this study cannot mechanistically explain either the reduction in occupancy and or the decline reproductive performance. We suggest the proximate effects of local weather patterns (either directly or indirectly) ultimately associated with overall climate change have the greatest potential to explain the altered demographic features of the Rankin Inlet population.
   Seasonal Use of Space and Home Range Defense in Peregrine Falcons Breeding near Rankin Inlet, Nunavut Franke, A*, Canadian Circumpolar Institute
One of the many challenges that climate change researchers face is predicting the manner in which animal populations may respond to changes in environmental conditions. Changes in climatic patterns may affect populations directly (e.g., influencing thermoregulation of individuals) or indirectly (e.g., influencing food availability). Local reductions in abundance of prey can occur as a result of severe spring and summer weather, and can influence the manner in which peregrine falcons forage including longer periods between food deliveries and potentially increased home range size. In 2008 and 2009, 13 GPS-accurate PTTs were deployed on male peregrines raising young. Utilization distributions were estimated using Local Convex Hull methodology, and Volume of Intersection (VI) was subsequently calculated for males resident at neighboring territories. Results indicated that male peregrine falcons limit their home ranges to the nesting cliff immediately upon returning from South American wintering areas, and expand home ranges significantly during brood rearing. In addition, it appears that defense of home range is not limited to the nesting cliff as volume of intersection for utilization distributions of neighboring males is low.
   Increase in the Availability of the Magdalena River Turtle’s Nesting Areas as a Community-Based Management Option to Mitigate Nest Loss due to Flooding Gallego-Garcia, N.A.*, Parques Nacionales Naturales de Colombia
Podocnemis lewyana is an endangered-endemic river turtle from Colombia. In the Sinu River, nesting-site flooding caused by the sporadic increase of water flow due to electricity production by a hydroelectric dam is one of the biggest factors that threaten the survival of the species. In order to increase nesting areas availability, a small scale test of artificial beaches was performed together with the local communities, as part of an ongoing community-based management program. Three models were tested: 1) extension over the shore and increasing the elevation above the maximum water levels of natural beaches, 2) construction of small, elevated artificial beaches in the same place where natural ones existed, using the same sand type, and 3) bare shore areas or weeded portions of the shore, with no sand cover and a smooth slope. All models were used naturally by females as nesting sites. Model 1 was the most frequently used, but in the future it could only be implemented in 7 out of 22 nesting beaches located in the low basin that are not completely submerged when the river reaches its maximum inundation level. Model 2, although expensive, showed higher hatching success and could be implemented all along the river. Model 3 was the cheapest and easiest to construct but with the lowest hatching success. Results showed that models 1 and 2 could be an inexpensive, large-scale, and viable in situ management option to minimize clutch loss due to artificial flooding in the Sinu River.
   Increasing the Impact of Systematic Conservation Planning: Recommendations, a New Decision Support System Framework, and a Prototype Gallo, J.A.*, Ecological Resilience Institute ; Lombard, A.T., Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University; Cowling, R.M., Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University
This paper aims to improve the manner that systematic conservation planning contributes to actual conservation (i.e. changes in land ownership or management that benefit biodiversity). First, three recommendations are made. Implementing these recommendations would allow a much broader constituency to include ecological principles in their land-use decision-making, would help conservation organizations adapt efficiently to stochasticities caused by climate and socio-political change, and would include the “working landscape” in conservation assessment and planning. A modeling framework and precursory model were designed, in the context of an applied case study in South Africa, to illustrate one approach for implementing the recommendations while also meeting the current “best-practices” of conservation planning. The framework is based on the return-on-investment philosophy and also uses contiguity and connectivity criteria to estimate the benefit/cost ratio for every conservation action at every location in a study area. The resulting “code” is transparent to a wide audience of GIS analysts through use of a menu-driven GIS-programming interface (ArcGIS Modelbuilder). The framework may deliver important indirect benefits, such as facilitating consensus-building and coordinated actions among organizations with different goals, and among different levels of governance. It also allows for automatic and real-time updating by using new online media and forums.
   Equitable benefits from a forest agricultural landscape: case of rodent eating owls and pest management around a tiger reserve. Ganesh,T*, ATREE ; Prashanth,M.B, ATREE; Mathivanan,M, ATREE
Rodents like the rats and bandicoots are the most common vermin that occur in the agricultural belts that form the immediate border of Kalakad Mundunthurai tiger reserve in southern India. These rodents feed on the crop and their residues, and are also known to be the primary food source for the large owls that are known to occur in this area. The forests of the tiger reserve hold potential habitats for the owls. Three large rodent feeding owls belonging to the genus Bubo, Strix and Tyto are know to occur in these tracts but a baseline reference for their occurrence in terms of relative abundance, occupancy at roosting sites or other aspects of their ecology remain unknown. The increasing human impact on the region surrounding the reserve is causing significant threat to the owl population. The traditional practice and belief that owls are important for agriculture is accepted but not practised largely due to increasing availability of easier solutions like rodenticide to control rodents. Here we evaluate a traditional practise of putting up perches for owls in rice paddies to attract owls to their fields. This way we also evaluate the value of such ecosystem services provided by having good forests in the neighbour hood and thereby sustain the interest of agriculturist in conserving forests. We used broadcasting of species specific vocalizations and eliciting their response in order to confirm their presence in an area. We used perches in rice paddies and observed for owl use of these perches. Our results showed variable responses. The agriculture community response to these perches was also mixed as some belived it was for rats and others for owls. Though no evidence of owl use of perches was found there were enough owls in the vicinity that used a different types of perches for foraging on rodents. These are discussed in detail in this presentation.
   An upland farming system under transformation: Proximate causes of land use change in Bela-Welleh catchment (Wag, Northern Ethiopian Highlands) Getchew simegn*, Ethiopian society of soil science
Title: A possible way out of the ‘low-level equilibrium trap’ in the Ethiopian Highlands is agricultural intensification. To characterise and quantify current transformations in these permanent upland cultivation systems, a detailed study on land use changes and its proximate causes was carried out in the 41 km2 Bela-Welleh catchment (2050–3682 m a.s.l.) in the Wag zone of Amhara Region, Northern Ethiopia. Land use maps were obtained through aerial photo interpretation (1965 and 1986) and detailed field mapping (2005–2006). Interpretation of topographic maps and field mapping gave knowledge of the spatial distribution of possible explanatory factors. Major land use changes are (1) a gradual abandonment of mountain agriculture which was replaced by woody vegetation (now covering 70% of the upper catchment) and (2) the widespread introduction of irrigation agriculture, wherever water is available (from 0% in 1982 to 5% of the catchment in 2006). Whereas both changes are favoured by government policies, they have now at least partially been taken up by the farming communities. The study demonstrates these land use changes and their influencing factors. Changes of crop- and rangeland into forest occur on the steeper slopes in higher topographical position. Changes from rain fed cropland into irrigated cropland (two harvests) depend obviously on the availability of water, but also on population density, and inversely on distance to Sekota town. We are here in presence of an almost classical example of the mutation of a ‘‘permanent upland cultivation system’’ into a system with irrigated agriculture. Keywords: Agricultural intensification, Ethiopia Farming system, Forest regeneration, Irrigation agriculture, Land use changes
   Physical Exposure as Surrogate for Socioeconomic Data in Marine Conservation Planning Giakoumi, S*, Department of Marine Sciences, University of the Aegean ; Grantham, H.S., The Ecology Centre, School of Biology, University of Queensland; Kokkoris, G.D., Department of Marine Sciences, University of the aegean; Possingham, H.P., Ecology Centre, School of Biology, University of Queensland
Current marine conservation planning literature stresses the importance of integrating socioeconomic considerations into the design process. Yet, in most parts of the world there is a lack of detailed spatially explicit economic information. In order to overcome this paucity, spatially variable cost surrogates should be used rather than assuming just area is a surrogate for cost. We generated socioeconomic data calculating the level of physical exposure of an area. Until now abiotic parameters have been considered to be important in driving the distribution patterns of marine species rather than socioeconomic data. However, weather conditions also affect the spatial distribution of fishing which is the most prevalent human activity in the sea. Considering the climate patterns of our study region, the Cyclades Archipelago in the north eastern Mediterranean Sea, we developed a method using the direction of the wind to determine the level of exposure for each candidate area. We used time series data for average wind direction for nine consecutive years (2000 – 2008). The inclusion of such data led to the selection of marine protected areas in locations where the opportunity cost for coastal fisheries is relatively low and the expected conflicts with the local community minimum.
   Canadian Dark Sky Initiatives 2010 Goering, Peter*, Muskoka Heritage Foundation ; Bidwell, Tony, Prof. Emeritus, Queen's University; Dick, Robert, RASC, U. Ottawa; Welch, David, Parks Canada - Retired
Canada has developed Dark Sky Initiatives to help to conserve the night environment, which we review in this paper. The harmful effects of light pollution on the nightscape are uniting astronomy and conservation communities. In the 1980s the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada (RASC) made light pollution a topic for public displays and membership meetings. A more effective approach took root in the 1990s through meetings with municipal officials to explain the problems of the misuse of artificial lighting systems. This program has been expanded to include the biological environment, erosion of culture and human health. The collaboration between astronomers and conservationists is a powerful alliance that connects the experience of the RASC with reducing light pollution, with popular support for environmental protection and Canada’s national network of parks, conservation areas, and protected lands. These remain the focus of the RASC’s national light pollution abatement program. This program now benefits from other ecological concerns. Two recent initiatives are to interconnect large areas of protected lands migratory corridors with controlled artificial lighting and to protect biodiversity of all biological communities in the vast areas of Canada's boreal forest.
   Perceptions of Environmental Change in the Nebraska Sandhills Goodall, Amy Richert*, James Madison University
The Sandhills region of Nebraska, USA is managed primarily by multi-generation cattle ranchers that consider their home as special because of a long cultural history. Many Sandhills ranchers have tended the land over the years with what they consider best practices for environmental health. During the past 10 - 20 years, people from outside of the Sandhills region have increasingly expressed interests in non-ranching oriented land purchasing. Especially notable are exotic animal ranchers, golf course land buyers, and outfitters for outdoor recreation. This presentation is an overview of a project designed to assess what the Sandhills region means to local people and the concerns that people have about the future natural and cultural environment. Perceptions were assessed among three user groups (ranchers, commercial operators, and recreationists) during approximately 200, three-hour long interviews. Content analyses revealed that changes in ranch culture were feared by each user group but that each group differed in its concerns about the natural environment. Presented are the concerns for changes in landscapes, which wildlife species are considered most vulnerable to environmental change, and which local and regional environmental agencies are considered as most respectable to deal with the changes.
   Survival of Tigers and their Prey amidst Political Unrest-The Case of Manas, India Goswami, Rajkamal*, ATREE ; Ganesh, T., ATREE
India represents an important habitat for the wild tigers (Panthera tigris), an endangered felid. But a large area ( atleast 5 ‘tiger reserves’) are affected by armed conflict of varied intensity undermining greatly the conservation efforts in these areas and impact of such conflicts on wild populations are poorly studied in India. Manas Tiger Reserve situated in the northeastern part of India underwent a decade of violent political disturbance starting in late 1980’s prior to which it had one of the highest densities of tigers in the country. We initiated a study in Manas in 2008, about 5 years after the violence ceased, to scientifically estimate the current population status of tiger, the apex predator and its major prey species in the reserve using the currently accepted methods of density estimation. We conclude that at present the tigers occur at low densities. A comparison of the current status of these animals with those of forest departments’ census data from the pre-political disturbance period, it may be said that the disturbance had a considerable negative impact on the wildlife including local extinction of two large herbivores, the swamp deer and the Indian rhinoceros.
   Characterization of connectivity initiatives in Colombia Gutierrez, C*, Wildlife Conservation Society -WCS ; Franco, P, Wildlife Conservation Society -WCS; Solano, C, Fundación Natura Colombia
Connectivity is a central aim of Conservation Biology since habitat loss, degradation and fragmentation are the main threats to biodiversity. But, what has been done on connectivity in Colombia? We carried out a compilation and analysis of connectivity related initiatives including those involving landscape management tools and biological, conservation and sustainable development corridors. We documented and characterized 23 initiatives. Most of the initiatives are concentrated in the Andean Region and correspond essentially to the conservation corridors concept, implying not only structural and functional connectivity, but also social and economic cohesion. The scale of initiatives ranges from small-local to transnational areas, but the core elements of most initiatives are National Parks. Most of the initiatives were developed since 2002, although nearly 50% remain as proposals. Most initiatives involve the collective participation of GOs and NGOs. However, objectives, scopes and monitoring schemes are not always clearly stated or planned, making it difficult to assess and contrast the different strategies. It is therefore necessary to work on a common language and unified conceptual ground. We encourage the promotion of formal and informal dialogues (e.g. courses, seminars and workshops) and the feedback between initiatives with successful activities and strategies.
   Current Status of the Red Siskin (Carduelis cucullata) in Dry Forests of Cucuta, Colombia. Gutierrez, DR*, Laboratorio de Ecología y Biogeografia, Universidad de Pamplona, Colombia ; Pacheco, RD, Laboratorio de Ecología y Biogeografia, Universidad de Pamplona, Colombia
The Red siskin is a finch categorized as endangered (EN) according to IUCN red list. In this paper we show updated records of Siskin populations in northeastern from Colombia after 10 years. We conducted surveys in seven different areas of tropical dry forest in the metropolitan area of Cucuta, on 6:00 to 10:00 and 16:00 to 18:00 with a total of 354 hrs and 28 km sampled. We recorded the species in four sites, all in the southern part of the study area, through playback, visual and mist nets with which they captured two individuals. The Red Siskin was recorded in areas surrounding forest fragments probably attracted to the playback, which makes this technique efficient for registration. Furthermore we identified the main threats dry ecosystem, habitat required for this species, among which are coal mining, urban expansion, agriculture and livestock as major threats. Further studies are needed with regard to population density and habitat preference, to implement conservation strategies for this bird.
   Predicting hotspots of diamondback terrapin (Malaclemys terrapin) nest predation on a Virginia barrier island Hackney, AD*, Clemson University ; Baldwin, RF, Clemson University
Worldwide populations of many turtles are declining. Nest predation is a primary cause of turtle egg mortality directly influencing recruitment rates. To successfully manage at risk species, we need an understanding of how predation risk may be a function of habitat features in and around the nest environment. We developed and validated a predictive model for the spatial distribution of predated diamondback terrapin nests using nest points collected in 2008, at Fisherman Island NWR on the Chesapeake Bay, USA. We used DOQQs to identify all patches of possible nesting habitat and searched each patch for depredated nests. We built a best-selected model for the probability of finding a predated nest using random (N=220) and nest (N=131) points and validated it using a reserve set (N=67). A total of 5 variables in 9 a priori models were used (presence/absence of sand, and distances to: roadway, marsh habitat, inlet bridge crossing, and abandoned infrastructures). Our best model (AIC weight 0.9797) reflected positive association with sand patches, and negative correlation with distance to marsh and roadway. Model validation resulted in an average concordance of 84.14% (range 26.17 to 97.38%, Q1 77.53%, median 88.07%, Q3 95.08%). Our results suggest that conservation efforts to secure terrapin nests from subsidized predators should focus on sand patches near marshes particularly edge habitat that might facilitate predation.
   Depoliticising Nature: Problems with Research on Citizen Values Haluza-DeLay, Randolph *, The King's University College ; Parkins, John, University of Alberta; Kowalsky, Nathan, University of Alberta
Research in to citizen “values” about “nature” is extensive. After conducting an extensive review for Environment Canada, we are convinced that this research program is built on foundations that have the unwitting effect of de-politicising nature. While such depoliticisation may be seen as a worthy project in scientific circles, it leaves conservation biology with a reduced sense of “the political” and at a disadvantage in making progress toward meaningful conservation. We argue that this research rests on modernist claims to the autonomous individual that encourages and reinforces a neoliberal mindset that has been excoriated as a “programme for destroying collective structures which may impede the pure market logic.” Such research is often built on assumptions and methods that remove purported values from context and make invisible the pathways by which values are formed or mobilized. It ignores the processes by which some values are legitimized and others made to seem invalid. Finally, it embeds problematic constructions of nature such that urban environments or “nearby nature” may be eliminated from consideration as “nature.” Socio-political theorizing shows “values” to be derived from a mix of sources including societal discourses. Therefore, we argue two points. First, a more complex understanding of “values” accompanied with methodological expansion. Second, acknowledgment of the (small-p) political dimensions of conservation values research.
   Better a Bird in the Bush? What Birding Codes of Ethics tell Us about Birders and their Organizations Heather J. Aslin*, Charles Darwin University ; David H. Bennett, Indigenous Community Volunteers
Birdwatching, in its more competitive forms known as ‘birding’ or ‘twitching’, is a widespread recreational activity. A recent US Fish and Wildlife Service report, based on the National Survey of Fishing, Hunting, and Wildlife-Associated Recreation, suggests that 20% of Americans over the age of sixteen watches birds, and that birdwatchers contributed $36 billion to the US economy in 2006. While most participants are likely to be casual or backyard birdwatchers, those who engage in organized and competitive birding events are expected to follow various rules and codes of ethics, and many belong to birding organizations with established codes of this kind. In view of birdwatching’s environmental, social and economic significance, we ask: • what do these formal codes of ethics tell us about birders and their organizations? • how do the positions adopted in these codes relate to those identified in the literature on environmental ethics, and are they a conservation ethic? To address these questions, this paper presents a comparative analysis of codes of ethics in practice from birdwatching organizations. Based on this, it concludes that these codes are built as much on history as on ethical necessity, and that integrity is a birdwatcher’s most valuable asset.
   Out of sight, into focus? Using cetacean conservation to promote environmental awareness and guide coastal planning in southern Chile Heinrich, Sonja*, SMRU, University of St Andrews ; Fuentes, Marjorie, yaqupacha Chile
In southern Chile large-scale aquaculture farming operations for non-native salmonids and shellfish continue to expand into ever more remote areas, likely affecting the coastal ecosystems and biodiversity. Here we summarize our experience using charismatic top predators such as cetaceans (e.g. dolphins and porpoises) to identify important coastal areas for protection and spatial marine planning along with environmental education to promote conservation awareness in local communities. Systematic data on cetacean distribution in relation to environmental features and anthropogenic activities have been collected during boat-based surveys in the coastal waters of the Chiloé Archipelago since 2001. A spatial modeling framework was used to identify important habitat and revealed small-scale habitat partitioning between poorly known Chilean dolphins (Cephalorhynchus eutropia), Peale’s dolphins (Lagenorhynchus australis) and Burmeister’s porpoises (Phocoena spinipinnis. Spatial overlap between cetacean core areas and aquaculture activities was substantial. Endemic Chilean dolphins appeared to be most susceptible to anthropogenic threats due to their localized distribution and ranging patterns. Their distinct core habitat also supported a higher diversity of marine birds and other vertebrates. These findings have formed key features in environmental education campaigns with more than 500 children and adults participating to date and are currently being integrated into local school curricula. In the absence of comprehensive marine assessments identified cetacean core areas are also being used to guide placement of conservation zones under the emerging regional marine zoning and management plans.
   Impacts of Light on the Endangered Salt Creek Tiger Beetle Higley, L.G. *, University of Nebraska-Lincoln ; Allgeier, W., University of Nebraska-Lincoln
Attraction to light is known to disrupt behavior and impact the life histories of insects, particularly Lepidoptera. The potential role of light pollution as a contributing factor to insect extinction often is overlooked. We considered this issue by examining the attraction of the endangered Salt Creek tiger beetle, Cicindela nevadica lincolniana Casey, and the white-cloaked tiger beetle, C. togata globicollis Casey, to common urban light sources. We hypothesized that tiger beetles would be more attracted to lamps emitting ultraviolet (UV) wavelengths than to non-UV emitting lamps. In six, five, four, and two-way choice tests, tiger beetles were attracted to all lights tested, and significantly higher counts of tiger beetles were attracted to UV emitting lamps than to non-UV emitters. Responses to light in both species showed similar trends. Moreover, in behavioral threshold tests beetles were significantly attracted to two lamps at the lowest measurable light intensities we could obtain. Unfortunately, these levels exceed light intensities measured in existing beetle habitats and higher levels occur in sites where C. n. lincolniana populations have disappeared. Potential impacts from attraction to light by tiger beetles could include disruption of nocturnal oviposition behavior and increased mortality. For species with critical nocturnal behaviors and limited populations, results indicate light pollution could significantly contribute to population decline
   Towards a method for determining climate risk faced by networks of key biodiversity sites Hole, D*, Conservation International ; Ohlemuller, R, Durham University; Foster, M, Conservation International; Larsen, F, Conservation International; Turner, W, Conservation International
Protected areas and other key biodiversity sites offer enormous potential in helping us mitigate against, and adapt to, climate change. The biodiversity they contain however, while crucial for maintaining the ecosystem services that underpin that potential, is often poorly understood, reducing our ability to assess the potential impacts of climate change on the majority of component species. Here, we present a novel method for assessing the magnitude of the potential climatic shift within individual sites and across networks, using three increasing levels of ‘climatic tolerance’ to determine when the climate at a site has shifted appreciably from the present. We evaluate our method using the Alliance for Zero Extinction (AZE) network as a model. AZE sites are critical for biodiversity, representing the last remaining refuge of one or more Endangered or Critically Endangered species (IUCN Red List). > 25% of these sites are projected to experience substantial shifts away from present climate over the coming century, even under the widest tolerance limits, with > 70% experiencing a substantial shift from the present under narrow limits. Our results provide an indication of the risk posed by climate change across a network critical for maintaining the world’s biodiversity. We further explore their utility for informing broad adaptation recommendations at individual sites, providing managers with one of the multiple tools needed to optimally prioritize funding and conservation action in the future.
   Habitat fragmentation disrupts the demography of a widespread native mammal Holland, GJ*, School of Life and Environmental Sciences, Deakin University, Australia ; Bennett, AF, School of Life and Environmental Sciences, Deakin University, Australia
Fragmentation theory predicts that the occurrence of species should be positively correlated with fragment size, but the demographic processes likely to drive such patterns are poorly understood. Further, habitat quality also may be an important influence on demographic performance in modified landscapes. We investigated these predictions for the native bush rat, Rattus fuscipes, by testing the following hypotheses: 1) demographic performance is positively correlated with fragment size; and 2) demographic performance is positively correlated with habitat quality. Populations were censused in two large (>49 ha) and eight small (<2.5 ha) forest fragments (including fragments of high and low habitat quality in each category) in an agricultural region of southeastern Australia. Fragment size influenced population demography; populations in large fragments had higher densities, older age structures, and were more likely to recruit adults than those in small fragments. Reproductive patterns were more predictable in large fragments. Habitat quality per se had less marked effects. Despite being widespread, R. fuscipes populations are profoundly affected by fragmentation, with population performance declining with fragment size. Many common species may be surprisingly sensitive to fragmentation. Identifying life-history traits that allow species to overcome demographic challenges is important for biodiversity conservation in changing landscapes.
   Cost–benefit analyses of mitigation measures aimed at reducing collisions with large ungulates in the United States and Canada; a decision support tool Huijser, MP*, Western Transportation Institute - Montana State University ; Duffield, JW, The University of Montana, Department of Mathematical Sciences; Clevenger, AP, Western Transportation Institute - Montana State University; Ament, RJ, Western Transportation Institute - Montana State University; McGowen, PT, Western Transportation Institute - Montana State University
Ungulate-vehicle collisions are numerous and have increased over the last decades in the United States and Canada. We calculated the costs associated with the average deer- (US$6,617), elk- (US$17,483) and moose-vehicle collision (US$30,760), including vehicle repair costs, human injuries and fatalities, towing, accident attendance and investigation, monetary value to hunters of the animal killed in the collision, and cost of disposal of the animal carcass. In addition, we reviewed the effectiveness and costs of 13 mitigation measures considered effective in reducing collisions with large ungulates We conducted cost-benefit analyses over a 75-year period to identify the threshold values (in 2007 US$) above which individual mitigation measures start generating benefits in excess of costs. These threshold values were translated into the number of deer-, elk-, or moose-vehicle collisions that need to occur per kilometer per year for a mitigation measure to start generating economic benefits in excess of costs. We believe the model presented in this paper can be a valuable decision support tool and, depending on meeting the thresholds, mitigation measures may not only benefit human safety and nature conservation, but can also be a wise economic investment.
   The Impact of Phylogenetic Data on Conservation Management of the Noble Crayfish (Astacus astacus L.) Population in Central Croatia Jadan, Margita*, Rudjer Boskovic Institute ; Čoz-Rakovac, Rozelindra, Rudjer Boskovic Institute; Strunjak-Perović, Ivančica, Rudjer Boskovic Institute; Topić-Popović, Natalija, Rudjer Boskovic Institute
The noble crayfish (Astacus astacus L.) is one of four native freshwater crayfish species distributed in Croatia. The species has declined dramatically in recent years due to a number of factors including habitat loss, pollution and “crayfish plague”. Its original range has been restricted and changed. All this has led to the recognition of the noble crayfish in Croatia as a threatened species. The phylogenetic data were necessary for the conservation and management program that would prevent the extinction of the species. We analysed the noble crayfish population of Stajnička Jaruga that will be used in conservation project for the re-introduction of the species in the nearby Gacka River. Sequencing of the mitochondrial cytochrome (COI) and 16S rRNA genes revealed that all analysed individuals possess the same phylogenetic haplotype. The haplotypes identified on both regions were new, previously undescribed. We concluded that noble crayfish population from the Stajnička Jaruga represents native population that can be used as a stock population for the conservation program.
   Impact of seedling characteristics and outplanting times on early establishment and growth of aspen seedlings Javier Rodriguez*, University of Alberta Graduate Student ; Simon Landhausser, University of Alberta Professor; Vic Lieffers, University of Alberta Professor
Aspen has become an important species in forest reclamation due to its potential for quickly developing a tree-canopy. However, most aspen seedlings stock that is currently used suffers from significant transplant shock or planting check (several years of slow growth). The underlying mechanisms for this poor growth are not well understood. We manipulated aspen seedling characteristics such as root to shoot ratio (RSR) to investigate what role RSR plays in early seedling performance after outplanting, and when planting is done at different times of the year. In order to modify seedlings characteristics, different types of seedlings were developed that had been exposed to a different photoperiod or growth inhibitors; some of the treatments prematurely terminated height growth and promoted root growth. These seedlings were outplanted at three different times of the year (spring, summer and fall) on three different sites. The first-year results from this study suggest that while overall seedling mortality was low, seedlings with higher RSR performed better and grew more in height in the first year after planting. Seedlings planted in the summer generally showed poorer performance the following growing season although those seedlings established new roots during the remainder of the growing season after planting. Differences in seedling performance among sites were large, likely as a result of differences in weed competition and soil conditions such as nutrients and moisture.
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   Products and Possibility from the Sea Around Us Project Jennifer Jacquet*, Sea Around Us Project, Fisheries Centre, University of British Columbia ; Daniel Pauly, Sea Around Us Project, Fisheries Centre, University of British Columbia
The Sea Around Us Project, founded in 1999, is dedicated to examining the global impacts of overfishing and making policy recommendations. Over the last decade, the Project has created an extensive databases that include data such as fisheries catches by species, value, and gear type, marine protected areas, and governance -- all by country with data beginning in the 1950s. This has allowed for many large-scale inferences of fish catch, effort, fuel use, subsidies, and many other human impacts on the oceans. Moreover, in some cases where the science allows this, we project these trends into the future, e.g. marine protected area targets and recent studies of climate change on biodiversity and fisheries potentials. Here we present the range of Sea Around Us data that is freely available online as well as case studies of collaborations and their conservation implications.
   Guilt versus Shame in Efforts to Improve the Global Commons Jennifer Jacquet*, Sea Around Us Project, Fisheries Centre, University of British Columbia
Consumer-based initiatives for conservation are on the rise and largely appeal to guilt – driven by an individual’s willingness to do the right thing. But working higher in the demand or pollution chain, with retailers, restaurants, and governments, is a more effective strategy and will likely require relying on shame – by affecting reputation using the media and gossip -- rather than guilt as a tactic. Highlighting examples from the real world, including issues related to fisheries, pollution, and public health, this talk will explore the use of guilt versus shame in conservation efforts.
   Revisiting a ‘successful’ Integrated Conservation and Development Project (ICDP) in India Jesudasan, Allwin*, Ashoka Trust for Research in Ecology and Environment (ATREE), Wildlife Conservation Society-India Program, Madras School of Economics ; Devy, Soubadra, Ashoka Trust for Research in Ecology and Environment (ATREE) ; Ganesh, T, Ashoka Trust for Research in Ecology and Environment (ATREE) ; Ganesa, R, Ashoka Trust for Research in Ecology and Environment (ATREE) ; Chowdary, Kausik, Madras School of Economics
The Integrated Conservation and Development Projects (ICDP) in Kalakad-Mundanthurai Tiger Reserve (KMTR), India being implemented since 1994, is projected to be successful and is set to serve as a model for such programs in India. Our aim was to evaluate the success of the project by examining the impact of the program on income and conservation attitude of people. Sampling was conducted at the household level from nine villages where randomly selected respondents were interviewed. We use a propensity score matching technique to evaluate the impact of the program on the income of the beneficiaries; and a proportion odds model for conservation attitude. There was no significant impact of the program on the income, conservation attitude. Analysis of other aspects of the programmed showed that villagers had rarely used the alternate biomass claimed to have been generated by the program, that the program was not participatory, that the loans provided by the program were often not used for alternate livelihoods and that the beneficiaries also seem to be failing to fulfill the duty of beneficiaries. The analysis of our data shows that the success of the ICDP implemented in KMTR as a conservation program is debatable.
   Species interactions in a changing world: the Guayacan's sulphur, its threatened host-plants and a changing environment JR Ferrer-Paris*, Unidad de Biodiversidad, Centro de Ecología, IVIC ; A Sánchez-Mercado, Unidad de Biodiversidad, Centro de Ecología, IVIC
Global climate change and local land cover changes represent a major threat to species involved in symbiotic realtionships. The Guayacan's sulphur (Kricogonia lyside, Lepidoptera: Pieridae) is a widespread and often abundant butterfly but its larvae feed exclusively on threated tree species of the genus Guaiacum (Zygophyllaceae). We used a maximum entropy approach to estimate the niche distribution of both the butterfly and its known hostplants based on their distribution records and environmental variables. Within this distribution we analysed timeseries of vegetation indices (NDVI) derived from AVHRR satellite images, and quantified significant trends in the last 25 years. We also projected the species ecological niche in scenarios of climate change for 2080, considering migration limitation due to restricted seed dispersal and slow growth of Guaiacum, and the dependence of the larvae on their hostplants. We found significant NDVI changes in over 30% of their distribution. Projection to future scenarios suggest an increase of the fundamental niche of the butterfly and some of the tree species. However limitations to migration might result in actual range shrinkage of up to 10%. Conservation action will be needed at the border of their distribution, where relictual populations will face unfavorable conditions and increased fragmentation. Guaiacum species can play the role of flagship species in restoration and conservation initiatives in their native ecosystems.
   Prospescts And Challenges Of Developing Payment For Ecosystem Services Schemes At Kikuyu Escarpment Forest In Kenya Julius Kariara*, Kijabe Environment Volunteers
Payments for ecosystem services schemes are gaining attention as promising and innovative market based mechanism for protecting biodiversity and contributing to sustainable development. Besides offering land and protected areas managers chances for sustainable financing, it presents communities living adjacent to protected areas opportunity for livelihood improvement. This study was therefore carried out to explore the prospects and challenges of developing payment for ecosystem services at local level by looking at community perspectives at Kikuyu Escarpment forest in Central Kenya. The study was a part of Msc thesis and involved assessing community awareness and perception on ecosystem services, community institutions and available ecosystem services. This was accomplished by administering questionnaire to 253 community members, review of payment for ecosystem case studies and transect walk. The results revealed low recognition of ecosystem services among the community, favorable community view on payment of ecosystem services schemes, existence of ecosystem services and community institutions that can play part in the development of such schemes. For the Kikuyu Escarpment protected area to realize its potential in payment for ecosystem services schemes, community awareness on Payment for ecosystems services, pilot payment for ecosystem services scheme and strengthening of community institutions should be prioritized.
   A captive-rearing protocol to increase calf survival in a declining woodland caribou population in the Yukon/Alaska borderlands Jung, Thomas S.*, Yukon Department of Environment, Whitehorse, Yukon, Canada ; Adams, Layne G., United States Geological Survey, Anchorage, Alaska, U.S.A; Farnell, Rick, Yukon Department of Environment, Whitehorse, Yukon, Canada; Oakley, Michelle, Yukon Department of Environment, Whitehorse, Yukon, Canada
We conducted trials to assess the efficacy of an in situ captive-rearing protocol to increase calf survival in the Chisana Caribou Herd (CCH), a small, declining population of woodland caribou (Rangifer tarandus) in the Alaska/Yukon borderlands. From 2003-2006, 175 pregnant cows were captured in late-March and transferred to a pen established in their natural range. In the pen they were protected from predators through the neonatal period and then released into the wild in mid-June. Over the 4 years, 136 calves were released from the pen. Radio-telemetry was used to monitor the survival of captive-born calves, as well as 156 calves born to radio-collared females in the wild. Calf survival from birth through the neonatal period was about 3 times greater for caribou in the pen. After release from the pen, survival of captive-reared calves to 5 months of age was 35% greater than that of caribou born in the wild. Despite the success of captive-rearing in dramatically increasing survival of calves, the contribution of captive-rearing to recovery of the CCH was limited by the relatively small proportion of pregnant females from the herd that could be reasonably maintained in the captive-rearing pen. Our results indicate that while captive-rearing may, in some situations, be a useful conservation measure to conserve small populations of woodland caribou, without addressing the factors limiting population growth rates, captive-rearing alone will not promote population recovery.
   Recovery of an overabundant endangered species: addressing community-based concerns with the reintroduction of wood bison in Yukon, Canada Jung, Thomas S.*, Yukon Department of Environment, Whitehorse, Yukon, Canada
Wood bison (Bison bison), a species-at-risk, were reintroduced to southwestern Yukon, in 1988 as part of a national recovery program. The population grew rapidly. Moreover, bison appear to be fulfilling some of the ecological functions that they likely did before extirpation. Thus, the project appears to be a biological success. However, there continue to be challenges in terms of garnering community support for the project. The main concerns have been focused on the ecological and social impacts of bison. The local perception is that the population is above a “social carrying capacity”. Clearly, without community support bison restoration will not be viable over the long-term. Over the past 12 years, varied initiatives have been undertaken to address community-based concerns. Primary among these have been: the establishment of a working group comprised of local communities and governments to recommend management actions; development of a cooperative management plan; fostering appreciation for bison; opening of a local, sustainable harvest to limit population growth and provide tangible benefits to local residents; and, research into the socio-economic and environmental impacts on human and ecological communities. Recent work suggests that these initiatives are successful in beginning to address community-based concerns; however, more work is needed if the social carrying capacity for bison is to be raised and they are to become a locally-valued species on the landscape.
   An evaluation of a captive-rearing protocol to increase calf survival in a declining woodland caribou population in the Yukon/Alaska borderlands Jung, Thomas S.*, Yukon Department of Environment, Whitehorse, Yukon, Canada ; Adams, Layne G., United States Geological Survey, Anchorage, Alaska, U.S.A.; Farnell, Rick, Yukon Department of Environment, Whitehorse, Yukon, Canada; Oakley, Michell P., Yukon Department of Environment, Whitehorse, Yukon, Canada
We conducted trials to assess the efficacy of an in situ captive-rearing protocol to increase calf survival in the Chisana Caribou Herd (CCH), a small, declining population of woodland caribou (Rangifer tarandus) in the Alaska/Yukon borderlands. From 2003-2006, 175 pregnant cows were captured in late-March and transferred to a pen established in their natural range. In the pen they were protected from predators through the neonatal period and then released into the wild in mid-June. Over the 4 years, 136 calves were released from the pen. Radio-telemetry was used to monitor the survival of captive-born calves, as well as 156 calves born to radio-collared females in the wild. Calf survival from birth through the neonatal period was about 3 times greater for caribou in the pen. After release from the pen, survival of captive-reared calves to 5 months of age was 35% greater than that of caribou born in the wild. Despite the success of captive-rearing in dramatically increasing survival of calves, the contribution of captive-rearing to recovery of the CCH was limited by the relatively small proportion of pregnant females from the herd that could be reasonably maintained in the captive-rearing pen. Our results indicate that while captive-rearing may, in some situations, be a useful conservation measure to conserve small populations of woodland caribou, without addressing the factors limiting population growth rates, captive-rearing alone will not promote population recovery.
   Nature-Based Tourism in Indian Protected Areas: Trends and Perspectives Karanth*, Columbia University ; DeFries, Coulmbia University
Nature-based tourism generates support for conservation and is a rapidly growing sector of the global economy. Previous literature has identified shifts away from nature-based recreation in wealthy countries, although visitor numbers to parks in less wealthy countries have increased. Trends in nature-based tourism within emerging economies have not been assessed, nor have the implications for local communities and the environment been examined. We quantify trends in tourism in 10 Indian parks, and the resulting effects on local employment and resources. We collected data on tourists from 1995 to 2008. We interviewed > 90% of tourist facilities around each park about visitors, history, employment, resource use etc. We find that the average rate of growth in tourist numbers averaged 10.2% and tourists were largely domestic (>80%) in nine parks. Many (77%) facilities have been constructed since 2000. Local employment is < 1% of the total population. Tourist facilities rely on local resources for fuel wood, water, and waste disposal. Indian parks are experiencing an explosive growth in nature-based tourism. Exposure to parks potentially generates domestic support for conservation in emerging economies. However, rapid growth in tourism facilities and their impacts on the local environment around parks requires better planning and management.
   Wetlands Conservation in Pakistan: Appraches and Achievements of the Pakistan Wetlands Programme KHAN, A*, Pakistan Wetlands Programme
Wetlands make significant ecosystems in Pakistan's natural resources. The country has gone through evolution in Natural Resources Management and have set models of community based management that have international recognition. In-spite of all this wetlands management remained an ignored discipline. The WWF Pakistan started implementing the Ministry of Environment's Pakistan Wetlands Programme in 2006 with the goal to conserve globally significant wetlands and associated biodiversity with alleviation of poverty. The Pakistan Wetlands Programme has launched interventions in capacity building for wetlands management, awareness raising and communication to raise awareness at mass level, and establish models in the selected wetlands ecosystems refered to wetlands complexes. There have been significant achievements, lessons learnt, and obstacles observed. This paper will review the various approaches applied by the Pakistan Wetlands Programme to achieve its goal and objectives, will present its achievements and the obstacles it faced with lessons learned for the future. It will also review the potential of wetlands management, conservation and research as emerging discipline in the future.
   Students' Perception of Environmental Commons Dilemmas - Evidence from Central Sulawesi Koch, S.*, Georg-August-Universität Göttingen - Didactics of Biology ; Barkmann, J., Georg-August-Universität Göttingen - Environmental and Resource Economics; Sundawati, L., Institut Pertanian Bogor (IPB) - Department of Forest Management; Bögeholz, S., Georg-August-Universität Göttingen - Didactics of Biology
Central Sulawesi harbours core ecosystems of the global Wallacea biodiversity ’hotspot’. Largely consisting of common pool or open access forest resources, it is heavily threatened by intensive resource appropriation including extraction of the non-timber forest resource rattan. To improve prospects for a more sustainable long-term development, a set of socio-ecological ’commons dilemmas’ need to be solved. This requires local actors who command knowledge on the social, economic, institutional, and ecological aspects of forest resource utilisation. We report on results of a study that systematically investigates the pre-concepts on and perceptions of commons dilemmas that future teachers and agricultural advisors bring to local resource conservation issues. Student pre-concepts on commons dilemmas were limited to – widely erroneous – ecological issues such as landslides or flooding as a result of deforestation allegedly effected by rattan overuse. Socio-economic impacts on or the needs of rural livelihoods were not emphasised in detail. The core of the commons dilemmas, i.e., the need to institutionally balance short-term individual exploitation profits with long-term and community interests in the preservation of a productive resource stock was not recognised at any detail - neither before nor after interventions. Fostering the cognitive competences to analyse and – if possible – solve commons dilemmas should be a prime task of environmental education globally. This task is particularly urgent in rural biodiversity 'hotspot' areas with an active colonisation frontier. While Indonesia strives to include environmental education in its school curricula, the results of our case study point out that the future educators may lack the needed insights into commons dilemmas themselves.
   Military training ranges as unappreciated sanctuaries of European biodiversity Konvicka M*, Univ. S. Bohemia & Inst. Entomology BC CAS, Ceske Budejovice ; Marhoul P, Daphne Czech Republic; Cizek O, Univ. S. Bohemia, Ceske Budejovice & Hutur consultancy; Vrba P, Univ. S. Bohemia & Inst. Entomology BC CAS, Ceske Budejovice; Zamecnik J, East Bohemian Museum, Hradec Kralove; Reif J, Daphne Czech Republic; Koptik J, Daphne Czech Republic; Hrazsky Z, Daphne Czech Republic
As a country situated at the borders of former Cold war blocks, the Czech Republic is peppered with hundreds of military training ranges (MTR), which are being abandoned at present. Conservation mainstream appreciate the biodiversity of these lands, largely assuming that it exists despite the army activities, owing to the sites remoteness. Based on inventory of vascular plants, butterflies, orthopterans and birds in 42 smaller (mean area: 91ha) MTRs, we argue that the military use has in fact supported the striking biodiversity. Recorded numbers of butterfly and plant species did not differ from a sample of over 100 reserves surveyed using identical method. Orthoptera contained over 20% of red listed species and many threatened birds reached higher densities in MTRs than predicted from a density-distribution relationship. Threatened species occupying MTRs depend on nutrient-poor and frequently disturbed conditions, or on mosaics of grasslands, scrub and woodlands. Such conditions existed in ancient European landscapes owing to megaherbivores, fire, and other now absent disturbance factors. Military ranges thus may represent the last remnants of ancient European wilderness. Following demilitarisation, their biodiversity is threatened by either succession or building development. We conclude with suggestions how to substitute the former military use in post-Cold war situation.
   Adaptation of bird fauna to changes in landscapes of Uzbekistan Kreuzberg, EA*, GLEL, Biological Department, Carleton University, Canada ; Fundukchiev, SE, Biological Department, Samarkand University, Uzbekistan; Belyalova, LE, Biological Department, Samarkand University, Uzbekistan
In Uzbekistan Red Book (2003), the ratio of threatened breeding water-birds and grassland (desert) birds presents 77 % of all breeding bird fauna (46% and 31% accordingly). This list has reflected the major changes in ecosystems caused by agricultural development, and especially by wide-scale irrigation started in 1960s-1970s: loss and transformation of natural wetland, riparian and grassland ecosystems. However, currently the populations of many declined bird species are recovering. This recovery is a result of changes in the agriculture structure and appearance of new secondary semi-natural habitats, including new drainage lakes, irrigation channels and abandoned crop fields. They present the original ecological oases in the past arid zones. Fauna survey and monitoring studies, conducted during last decades, have shown that it is complicated process which associated with primary simplification of landscape and its gradual complication. The structure of ornithological complexes (number of species, their status and abundance) also reflect the ongoing processes in landscape. Without any doubt, those processes need more investigation for the understanding of bird population requirements and development of effective conservation and recovery strategies.
   Coping with climate change: Understanding local communities’ knowledge and their coping strategies to climate change. Kuria, DK*, Kijabe Environment Volunteers ; Arinaitwe J, BirdLife International
Climate change has lately dominated global agenda. It is widely accepted that local communities are highly impacted by climate change despite their enormous knowledge on their environment. This study uses desktop studies and a case study of Kereita forest to assess the level of community understanding on climate change and their coping strategies. A total of 45 institutions were visited and discussions held with their key personnel or their project reports reviewed. Responses to the questionnaires were gathered from a total of 324 households. . The research indicates that the community at Kereita forest is knowledgeable about climate and climate change. This is demonstrated by their ability to identify various causes, indicators and effects of climate change. Most of the respondents seem to have acquired knowledge about climate change through observation and experiences, and from local groups. Communities employ a number of strategies to cope with climate change including included diversification of crops, adopt of better farming methods, growing of fast growing crops, water harvesting and irrigation. Traditional coping are still in use but not as high as in the past. Change of lifestyles and religion seem to have influenced traditional coping strategies. The study recommends for reorganization of community knowledge and their participation in climate change and conservation projects being designed and implemented for them.
   Reality vs. Perception: How Rural Tanzanians View Risks from Man-Eating Lions Kushnir, Hadas*, University of Minnesota
Perceptions of risk are an important component of human-wildlife conflict research, as perceptions greatly affect peoples’ attitudes and behaviors towards wildlife. Lions have attacked over 1000 people in Tanzania since 1990, providing a unique opportunity to examine risk perceptions in an extreme situation. I conducted questionnaire surveys to identify: (1) overall risk perceptions, (2) factors that influence risk perceptions, (3) aspects of risk that are correctly perceived, and (4) how risk perceptions of lions compares to other risks. Overall, people tend to overestimate their risk from lions; 53% of respondents think they are very likely to be attacked while over an average lifespan people only have 0.19% chance of being attacked. Although risk perceptions are correlated to gender, age, education, acres of land cultivated, and number of livestock owned, previous experience with attacks (attack in village or family) and sighting of lions or lion signs are not correlated to perceptions. Overall, people were very aware of who was at risk, and when and where risk was greatest. People believe risk from lions is greater than from mega-herbivores and about the same as from other predatory species. Although most perceive non-wildlife risks to be greater, many believe risks such as famine and malaria are equal to the risk of attack by a lion, emphasizing the tendency for people to overestimate risks that are rare but elicit strong fears.
   Effective conservation of large predators in Asia Linkie, M*, FFI
Conservation biologists argue over whether to focus on approaches to conserve single species or wider ecosystems. A fundamental requirement for effectively managing endangered wildlife in threatened habitats is an understanding of the interactions of the multiple threats faced by those species and ecosystems. Among terrestrial habitats, tropical forests are amongst the most endangered because of deforestation, especially that precipitated by road construction. Among wildlife, large-bodied mammals, particularly top predators, are amongst the most endangered species because they often require large ranges that bring them into close contact with humans. In this study, we assess the status of the critically endangered and endemic Sumatran tiger using a detection/non-detection survey. From this, we assess the impact of future road construction on the status of Sumatran tigers. We then use these results to assess policy intervention options that are anticipated to be effective and achievable, such as the incorporation of environmental concerns into spatial planning, and that provide wide benefits to other endangered carnivore species.
   Urban biodiversity, human well-being and our connection with nature Luck, Gary W*, Institute for Land, Water and Society, Charles Sturt University, Albury NSW Australia 2640 ; Davidson, Penny, Institute for Land, Water and Society, Charles Sturt University, Albury NSW Australia 2640; Boxall, Dianne, School of Psychology, Charles Sturt University, Albury NSW Australia 2640; Lisa Smallbone, Institute for Land, Water and Society, Charles Sturt University, Albury NSW Australia 2640
By 2050, 70% of the world’s population will live in urban areas. Urbanisation substantially reduces biodiversity raising concerns that urban dwellers are becoming increasingly separated from nature. Loss of urban biodiversity may adversely affect human well-being and connectedness to nature – and ultimately people’s empathy for conservation. However, we know little of how variation in neighbourhood biodiversity affects these factors. We measured the personal well-being and level of connection with nature of over 1000 householders in 36 neighbourhoods. We also measured various natural features of each neighbourhood including bird and plant diversity and abundance, and vegetation cover. Contrary to expectations, there was little evidence that personal well-being or level of connection with nature varied as a factor of the neighbourhood environment. The strongest positive relationships were with vegetation cover. There was no relationship between neighbourhood biodiversity per se and personal well-being or connectedness. This was true also when controlling for socio-demographic factors such as age, marital status and level of activity, which had much stronger relationships with well-being and connectedness. Human-nature experience is increasingly dominated by the interactions between people and the biota of their neighbourhoods. Despite concerns that this may dictate human well-being and connection with nature our study found little evidence to support this hypothesis.
   Assessing Biome Level Selection by Private Game Reserves in the Eastern Cape Maciejewski, Kristine*, Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University ; Kerley, Graham. I. H, Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University
Managing biodiversity for economic benefit while achieving effective conservation is increasingly important with the growth in human population. Only through effective conservation will biodiversity be maintained, which is critical to future economic opportunities. This is particularly apparent in the areas of wildlife management and wildlife based ecotourism. In the Eastern Cape, South Africa many private reserves have been established as ecotourism is a key area of economic growth. We investigated what criteria are being selected in the establishment of private game reserves in the Eastern Cape. The private game reserves were assessed in terms of biome representation, contribution to conservation, proximity to airport and national roads, and habitat suitability for tourism.. Determining the relationship between private game reserves and biome level distribution will allow for a better understanding of the main driving factors behind ecotourism operators.
   The Habitat Value of Energy Sector Wellsites for Boreal Birds Mahon, C. Lisa*, Department of Biological Sciences, University of Alberta ; Bayne, Erin M., Department of Biological Sciences, University of Alberta
Oil and natural gas exploration and development account for most of the estimated 40,000 ha of land disturbed annually by industrial activity within the province of Alberta. Natural gas wellsites result in the creation of small clearings (approximately 100 x 100 m) with a high degree of degradation. To assess the habitat value of wellsites for boreal birds we: 1) compared bird community composition and structure in forest, forest edge, and wellsite habitats, 2) examined whether wellsite age influenced bird and plant communities, and 3) determined the relative contribution of habitat type, floristics, and vegetation structure on the boreal mixedwood avifauna. Our research revealed that: wellsites supported less than half the species found in forest edge and forest interior habitats; forest edge habitats supported the highest species abundance for all nesting guilds indicating a positive edge effect; and habitat type and vegetation floristics, rather than vegetation structure, predicted bird community composition. In general, wellsites provided habitat for a small number of open habitat species (e.g. Lincoln’s Sparrow, Le Conte’s Sparrow) while forest edges provided habitat for a larger number of ground, shrub, and canopy species (e.g. Tennessee Warbler, Warbling Vireo, Black-capped Chickadee).
   Establishing a culture of knowledge-based decision making through science: The Institute for Biodiversity, Ecosystem Science and Sustainability Mahoney, Shane P.*, Department of Environment & Conservation, Government of Newfoundland & Labrador, St. John’s, NL A1B 4J6, Canada ; Otto, Robert D., Institute for Biodiversity, Ecosystem Science & Sustainability, Corner Brook, NL A2H 6P9, Canada; Murphy, Tamara, Institute for Biodiversity, Ecosystem Science & Sustainability, Corner Brook, NL A2H 6P9, Canada
The genesis of the Institute for Biodiversity, Ecosystem Science & Sustainability (IBES) was aimed at addressing the need for science-based culture and the enhancement of knowledge-based decision making processes within the Government of Newfoundland and Labrador (GovNL). IBES is a formal partnership between GovNL and academic institutions, ensuring questions and issues of importance to the Province become the focus of academic research. The mandate of IBES is to direct a coordinated effort of graduate student research, expert reviews, and synthesis programs in partnership with research leaders from national and international universities. This presents a unique opportunity for government departments and agencies, and the academic community to collaborate on questions of mutual interest. IBES assists in the establishment and management of partnerships and graduate student research, as well as linking with relevant industry, non-governmental organizations and the public. These distinctive roles are enhanced by IBES’ ability to offer financial support for students and to access additional resources within universities and the broader research community. The IBES model has been successful and met with enthusiasm from the academic community. Since 2002, IBES has supported and coordinated 55 individual projects on a diverse array of sustainability issues with emphasis placed on initiatives that provide knowledge support to multiple areas.
   Morphological change in Newfoundland caribou: Effects of density, climate, and hunting Mahoney, Shane P.*, Department of Environment & Conservation, Government of Newfoundland & Labrador, St. John’s, NL A1B 4J6, Canada ; Weir, Jackie N., Department of Environment & Conservation, Government of Newfoundland & Labrador, St. John’s, NL A1B 4J6, Canada; Luther, Glenn, Department of Environment & Conservation, Government of Newfoundland & Labrador, St. John’s, NL A1B 4J6, Canada; Schaefer, James A., Biology Department, Trent University, Peterborough, ON, K9J 7B8, Canada; Morrison, Shawn, Dryas Research Ltd., Edmonton, AB, T6C 2R6, Canada
Understanding population limitation and regulation in caribou (Rangifer tarandus) is often hampered by insufficiently long-term records across a range of population densities. Using population and morphology records spanning 40 years and 20-fold changes in population size, we investigated the influence of density, climate, and legal harvest on body size in two caribou herds in central and southern Newfoundland, Canada. As populations increased and then declined, caribou jawbone size declined and male antler points decreased in number. Winter climate conditions prior to birth and hunting intensity in the year of death had little influence on jawbone morphology; changes in population density did account for much of the observed change in jawbone morphology, especially in females. Long-term monitoring of body size correlates such as jaw bone size and antler size may be a useful tool in the assessment of caribou population status.
   Assessing progress on the 2010 biodiversity target and a new vision for biodiversity post-2010 Mainka, SA*, IUCN
In 2002, the Convention on Biological Diversity set a target to reduce the rate of loss of biodiversity by 2010. Eight years later, the biodiversity community is evaluating progress and noting that while the target itself will not be met, advances in terms of awareness, policy and funding are evident. In October 2010 Nagoya, the CBD will meet and agree on a new target with indicators and this process should benefit from the lessons learned in the last 8 years including both a more specific and focused target and increased efforts to gathering data for relevant indicators. In May 2010, the CBD SBSTTA will meet and present the draft for consideration and the resulting potential opportunities for conservation biology will be highlighted.
   Nest choice as a predation avoidance mechanism Malaki, PA*, National Museums of Kenya
Nest choice as a predation avoidance mechanism Ms. Philista A. Malaki, National Museums of Kenya pmalaki@museums.or.ke or phillista@yahoo.com Zoology Department, Ornithology Section Understanding habitat use by species is fundamental to knowing its conservation status. Effective management depends on proper understanding of species-habitat associations. The study examined how the Grey-crested Helmet-shrike in Naivasha selected nest sites at different habitat levels. Nests were selected randomly and habitat variables in the immediate vicinity and areas surrounding the nest at pre-determined distances were measured. This was done at both at successful and failed nest sites. The variables differed significantly at different levels and were higher at successful nest sites. The study reveals that choice of habitat influence reproductive success for species at different levels. Cover and density of vegetation are critical in determining survival of nests and reproductive success. Management should hence focus on improving habitat conditions of nest sites and different range of scales. To enhance nesting success and bird productivity management should focus on manipulating, increasing and maintaining habitat features that increase reproductive success as this has direct fitness consequences. Key Words: Habitat, Selection, Management, Species
   Oil Sands Tailings Technology: understanding the impacts to Reclamation Mamer, Melinda*, Suncor Energy
Managing tailings is a critical component in the development of oil sands mines; the choice of tailings technology impacts reclamation schedules and outcomes. When tailings are released to a pond, a layer forms called Mature Fine Tailings (MFT) which is made up of fine clay particles suspended in water. The challenge is that MFT does not settle within a reasonable timeframe. As a result, Suncor has needed more and larger oil sands tailings ponds over the years. In the 1990s, Suncor pioneered consolidated tailings technology to help speed up the consolidation of MFT. Tailings Reduction Operations is a new approach to tailings management. TRO is the process of mixing MFT with a polymer flocculent, then depositing it in thin layers and allowing it to dry. This new process has significant benefits such as: accelerating reclamation, reducing the need for more tailings ponds and reducing the existing inventory of MFT. Suncor began reclamation of tailings in 1971 with varied success. The development of Consolidated Tailings technology required new reclamation techniques which has resulted in significant research. Examples of existing tailings reclamation will be discussed. The impact of TRO on reclamation schedules and outcomes will also be discussed.
   Landscape fluidity – a unifying perspective for understanding and adapting to global change Manning, A. D.*, The Australian National University ; Fischer, J, The Australian National University; Felton, A, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences; Newell, B, The Australian National University; Steffen, W, The Australian National University; Lindenmayer, D. B., The Australian National University
Rapid, human-induced global change presents major challenges to researchers,policy-makers and land managers. Addressing these challenges requires an appreciation of the dynamics of ecological systems. Here, we propose ‘landscape fluidity’ as a perspective and research agenda from which to consider landscapes in the process of changing rapidly through both time and space. We define landscape fluidity as the ebb and flow of different organisms within a landscape through time. A range of existing ideas, themes and practical approaches are relevant to landscape fluidity, and we use a case study of scattered tree landscapes in south-eastern Australia to illustrate the benefits of a landscape fluidity perspective. We suggest that a focus on landscape fluidity can bring a renewed emphasis on change in landscapes and so help unify a range of currently separate research themes in biogeography, ecology, palaeoecology and conservation biology.
   The role of human activities in the maintenance and conservation of vulture populations Mateo-Tomás, P*, School of Biology, IE University, Segovia, Spain ; Olea, PP, School of Biology, IE University, Segovia, Spain
We analysed the influence of two human activities (i.e. transhumance and ungulate hunting) on Griffon Vulture (Gyps fulvus) in NW Spain. Transhumant flocks are only present in this area during summer, while ungulate hunting is mainly performed during winter. Use of the area by vultures was addressed by looking for cliffs used as roosts or colonies, and consumption of livestock and game species by vultures was evaluated through questionnaires to shepherds and hunters and field surveys. Results revealed a strong spatiotemporal adjustment in the use of the area by vultures and human activities. Vultures occupied roosting sites within transhumant areas in summer and changed to roosting sites within hunting sectors in winter. Vultures frequently consumed livestock and hunting carcasses. Our results show the importance of human activities in the spatiotemporal distribution and maintenance of vulture populations.
   2010 Alliance for Zero Extinction (AZE) Update: an analysis of critical gaps in the global protected areas system Matthew N. Foster*, Conservation International ; Stuart Butchart, BirdLife International; Naamal De Silva, Conservation International; David Knox, Conservation International; Michael Parr, American Bird Conservancy; Benjamin Skolnik, American Bird Conservancy; Amy Upgren, Conservation International
The Alliance for Zero Extinction (AZE) is an alliance of over 60 biodiversity conservation organizations in 22 countries that collectively aim to avoid species extinctions by identifying and protecting the last remaining habitats of Earth’s most threatened species. In 2005, the alliance identified 595 sites worldwide where one or more Critically Endangered or Endangered species of mammal, bird, reptile, amphibian, or conifer (those taxa globally assessed by IUCN as of December 2004), found their last known refuge. Of those 595 sites, only 204 benefited from full formal protection. Much additional data have been gathered on the status and distributions of species since 2004, through such compilation exercises as the IUCN Red List, including the 2008 Global Mammal Assessment. We have undertaken a systematic update based on these data, and here present revised status, trends, and distribution of the 2010 update, including improved polygon spatial data, addition of dozens of new sites due to both improved data and genuine deterioration of species status; removal of several sites due to improvement of species status or improved knowledge; and assessment of the protected area coverage of the AZE sites.
   Incorporating Systematic Conservation Principles into Urban Landuse Planning: An Example from Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. Maxcy, K., Fiera Biological Consulting ; Latham, C.*, Fiera Biological Consulting
There are few options available to preserve natural ecosystems in areas under pressure from urbanization. Given limited resources in urban planning and design, cost-effective strategies are required to identify sites that best meet conservation goals, such as maximizing biodiversity representation, increasing habitat area, and promoting ecosystem function and resilience. Using systematic conservation planning principles, we quantified the value of natural areas along the rural-urban fringe in Edmonton, Alberta to determine conservation priorities for future landuse planning. Using GIS, we analyzed spatial information using the conservation planning tool Marxan to identify potential ecological network configurations subject to land area limits of 2%, 5%, and 10%. This conservation tool not only included information about the ecological value of Natural Areas (e.g. uniqueness, patch size) but also other constraints (e.g. alternative land uses such as transportation) to identify alternative ecological network configurations. The ecological network scenarios represent scientifically defensible options for future land-use planning, providing flexibility to integrate biodiversity values in a multifunctional landscape, along with other economic, social, and cultural considerations. Overall, the consideration of biodiversity values early in the planning process will increase the probability that these values can be maintained over the long-term within the City of Edmonton.
   Plant ecological analyses as a guide for forest restoration in the Taita Hills forests, Kenya Mbuthia, KW*, Bowling Green State University ; Medley, KE, Miami University (Ohio)
The Taita Hills forests, measuring < 3 km2 in about 10 fragments, forms the northern most part of the Eastern Arc Mountains, one of the globally recognized biodiversity hotspots. To describe plant communities, we established 57, 0.1 ha plots in the study forests. Sorensen community coefficients indicate over 68% compositional similarities within and across the forests. Species composition of the forests is highly modified from early resource extraction, the dominant species being fast growing, broadly distributed pioneer species. Plant community analyses using Detrended Correspondence Analysis (DCA) and Two Way Indicator Species Analysis based on relative importance values of species failed to identify distinguishable plant communities. In both forests, weak vegetation and environmental relationships were indentified using Cannonical Correspondence Analysis (CCA). We apply these ecological data to guide forest restoration within the Taita Hills forests. We identify sites and thirteen indigenous species for forest restoration based on spatial distribution of endemic, rare and locally important forest resources, their relationships with environmental conditions, and their regeneration status.
   Understanding the cost of establishing marine protected areas McCrea-Strub, A*, UBC/Fisheries Centre ; Sumaila, UR, UBC/Fisheries Centre; Zeller, D, UBC/Fisheries Centre; Nelson, J, Pew Environment Group; Pauly, D, UBC/Fisheries Centre
While considerable effort has focused on documenting and estimating the recurrent management costs of marine protected areas (MPAs), there has been virtually no attempt to quantify the cost of establishing MPAs. This lack of consideration is likely the result of the complexity of the process, involving the often uncoordinated efforts of a multitude of governmental and non-governmental entities over a protracted period of time with no clear beginning and end-point. Using information gathered from a representative subset of MPAs worldwide, this paper presents a first attempt at identifying the various cost components and exploring potential predictors of the total cost of establishing MPAs of varying sizes (<10 km2 to >360,000km2), location (costal and offshore in both developed and developing countries), objectives and degree of protection. Variation in MPA start-up costs is shown to be related to a variety of factors, including location relative to a populated coastline, MPA size and other socioeconomic indicators. Additionally, the initial cost of establishment is compared to long-term, management costs, adjusted for inflation and discounted to obtain the present value of the cost incurred through time. Development of a method to estimate the potential cost of establishing proposed MPAs should play a crucial role in the conservation planning process.
   Factors influencing bat road-kills in Mediterranean landscapes. Medinas, Denis*, UBC - Unidade de Biologia da Conservação, Universidade de Évora ; Marques, João Tiago, Centro de Biologia Ambiental, Faculdade de Ciências da Universidade de Lisboa; Mira, António, UBC - Unidade de Biologia da Conservação, ICAAM - Instituto de Ciências Agrárias e Ambientais Mediterrânicas
Recent studies suggest that roads can significantly impact bat populations. Thought bats are one of the most threatened groups of European vertebrates, studies aiming to quantify bat mortality and determine the main factors driving it are still scarce. Between March and October 2009, we daily surveyed road-killed bats in a transect of 52 km including different types of roads, in southern Portugal. Bat activity was also evaluated on roads and their surroundings. We found 154 road-killed bats of 11 species. Pipistrellus kuhlii and P. pygmaeus represented 64% of total specimens collected. We also found threatened and poorly known species like Barbastella barbastellus and Rhinolophus ferrumequinum. Bat road mortality, total and per species, occurred mostly in late summer and early autumn. Landscape features were the most important variable sets in explaining bat casualties. Nevertheless, bat activity, distance to known roosts and traffic volume also had a significant influence on it. The greatest incidence of casualties, of all bats and of Pipistrellus kuhlii and P. pygmaeus was recorded in places where roads crossed high quality habitats (forest areas and water courses). The importance of these findings for roadside management and implementation of effective mitigation measures of bat roadkill are discussed.
   Beyond Species Richness: Assessing Faunal Assemblages and Conservation Values in Neotropical Pasture-Dominated Landscapes Milder, J.C.*, Ecoagriculture Partners
Numerous studies have documented the potential of Neotropical agricultural mosaics to conserve a substantial portion of native species. However, the diversity of research methods used across different studies and sites—-as well as the dearth of multi-site studies or syntheses—-has made it difficult to document non-trivial patterns that can be generalized to larger scales. To address this need, we conducted a coordinated multi-landscape study of bird and butterfly diversity in pasture-dominated landscapes in Honduras, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, and Colombia. We quantified patterns of bird diversity in 13 agricultural and semi-natural land uses, and butterfly diversity in 9 such land uses. We also developed and applied a new assessment tool—-the Biodiversity Conservation Value (BCV) metric—-to quantify the conservation value of bird assemblages present in these landscapes. Overall, we documented 404 bird species and 296 butterfly species. Bird and butterfly species richness and abundance were significantly related to land use in consistent ways across all four landscapes. Bird assemblages were highly skewed toward non forest dependent and low conservation value species, particularly in the agricultural land uses. This pattern was substantially masked by the species richness and abundance measures but was revealed by the BCV metric, thus indicating the importance of the choice of metric when evaluating the conservation potential of human-dominated landscapes.
   Looking at Wildlife Translocations in a Different Light: Do Publication Bias and Definitions of ‘Success’ Distort Our Perceptions of Outcomes? Miller, KA*, School of Biological Sciences, Monash University ; Bell, TP, Ecogecko Consultants; Germano, JM, Conservation and Research Department, Memphis Zoo
Translocation, the intentional movement of animals from one area to another, is increasingly used as a means of species conservation and ecosystem restoration. These projects appear simple, yet reported success rates are low, particularly for threatened and endangered species. Publication bias may further distort our perceptions of translocation success, as researchers may be more likely to publish results of successful translocations and less likely to publish failed translocations. In the first comprehensive review of all published and unpublished translocations in one system (herpetofauna in New Zealand), we show that publication bias results in a gross overestimate of success rates, but bias against failed translocations is minimal. Time since release, the reason for conducting a translocation, and collaboration with a university all influence whether a translocation is published. We present a standardised definition of translocation success to account for the time since release. Importantly, publication bias can be accounted for using our standardisation, which should allow for a more rigorous evaluation of the causes of translocation success and failure.
   Deforestation in the Western Ghats: A case of population pressure on resources? Mohan Seetharam*, Ashoka Trust for Research in Ecology and the Environment, Bangalore, India ; S. V. Patil, Bilt Tree Tech Ltd., Maharashtra, India; B. R. Ramesh, French Institute of Pondicherry, India
Although population pressure has been implicated as a driver in studies of tropical deforestation, its relative importance is controversial, and the precise nature of the population-deforestation relationship is unclear at sub-national scales. We studied changes in landcover/land use in the Western Ghats, a global biodiversity hotspot, over a twenty year period between 1977 and 1997. Using multivariate approaches within a spatially explicit modeling framework, we found that local population dynamics over a corresponding period are poorly correlated with deforestation rates.
   Medicinal Plants in an Urban Environment: The Medicinal Flora in Dhanmondi Lake of Dhaka City, Bangladesh Mollik, M.A.H.*, Peoples Integrated Alliance, Bangladesh ; Faruque, M.R., Peoples Integrated Alliance, Bangladesh; Akter, K., Peoples Integrated Alliance, Bangladesh; Chowdhury, A., State College of Health Sciences, Bangladesh; Badruddaza, M., North South University, Bangladesh; Islam, M.T., Biogene Life Care, Bangladesh
Dhaka city is one of the oldest continuously inhabited cities of the world, and one of the most important Muslim pilgrimage sites. Despite this importance, very little information exits on the cities flora in general, and medicinal plants found within its limit in particular. Traditional medicine plays a large role in Bangladeshi society. The presented study attempted to investigate if traditional plant use and availability of important common medicinal plants are maintained in urban environments. The paper presents information on the traditional uses of forty-nine medicinal plants collected form the Dhanmondi Lake of Dhaka city, Bangladesh; and highlights the uses of these medicinal plants by the local inhabitants. The field survey covered different seasons. The survey was started in rainy seasons [June 2008] and collections were repeated every month for one and half years. Seasonal variations and frequency of medicinal plants occurrence were noted. All medicinal plants were photographed, collected, identified, and vouchers were stored at the Bangladesh National Herbarium; under the first author's collector series. The study provides a veritable source of information for traditional medicinal practitioners and medicinal plant researchers. These medicinal plants may be incorporated into the healthcare delivery system of the country.
   An Ethnomedicinal Study of Medicinal Plants in Tungipara Upazila of Gopalganj District, Bangladesh Mollik, M.A.H.*, Peoples Integrated Alliance, Bangladesh ; Faruque, M.R., Peoples Integrated Alliance, Bangladesh; Akter, K., Peoples Integrated Alliance, Bangladesh; Hossain, A.B.M.A., Peoples Integrated Alliance, Bangladesh; Chowdhury, D.I., Biogene Life Care, Bangladesh; Rahman, M.M., Biogene Life Care, Bangladesh; Hassan, A.I., Biogene Life Care, Bangladesh; Islam, M.T., Biogene Life Care, Bangladesh
Plant materials are being used from time immemorial as one of the main sources of medicine to combat various diseases. Tungipara Upazila is one of the less studied regions of Gopalganj district, Bangladesh for its ethnomedicinal values. The present paper synthesizes the first report related to the documentation and conservation of ethnomedicinal plants of Tungipara Upazila and their socio-economic relationship with the forests and its resources. Ethnomedicinal data were collected using semi-structured interviews, field observations, preference and direct matrix ranking with traditional medicinal practitioners. All plant samples were collected and identified at the Bangladesh National Herbarium. First-hand information about 073 plant species belonging to 059 genera and 051 families were recorded during extensive field surveys carried in Tungipara Upazila of Gopalganj district, Bangladesh; which are therapeutically used against different diseases, such as coughs, colds, fevers, dysentery, diarrhea, ulcers, diabetes, male and female weakness, snake-bite and skin disorders are covered in this report. Part of the plant used, dosage and the mode of drug administration in different ailments are described. Documenting the eroding plants and associated indigenous knowledge can be used as a basis for developing management plans for conservation and sustainable use of medicinal plants in the area.
   Serum evaluation of captive and semicaptive peccaries (Tayassuidae) in Colombia Montenegro, OL, Instituto de Ciencias Naturales Universidad Nacional de Colombia ; Roncancio, NJ*, Wildlife Conservation Society; Soler, D, Universidad de la Salle; Cortez, J, Grupo de conservación y Manejo de vida silvestre Universidad Nacional de Colombia; Contreras, JL, Grupo de Conservación y Manejo de Vida Silvestre, Universidad Nacional de Colombia
The knowledge about the diseases of wildlife peccary’s populations is poor. There are feral hogs inhabit in distribution area of peccaries. There is a potential transmission of different diseases into both species. The OIE requirement to evaluate the Hog Cholera in peccaries let the fists serologic evaluation to this and other diseases in peccaries in Colombia. The research was done in several sites of the middle and low Magdalena´s river valley, and the east plans region of Colombia. The samples were taken of the captives and semi-captives animals. The majority of them were extracted of natural populations. In some cases the peccaries were living whit pigs. We sampled Collared peccary (Pecari tajacu) (n=53) and White lipped peccary (Tayassu pecari) (n=1). The infection agent analyzed were Hog Cholera, Aujeszcky disease, six serotypes of Leptospira spp., Brucella spp., Circovirus and two serotypes of Vesicular stomatitis virus. The tests were done by microagglutination and direct and indirect ELISA to antibodies detection. We didn´t find positive animals to Hog Cholera, Aujeszcky and Brucella spp. Leptospira spp. showed prevalence to 0 until 59% to the six serotypes. Someone peccaries had two or three serotypes. The serotype Indiana of Vesicular stomatitis virus showed 11% positive and serotype New Jersey 29%. Some animals had both serotypes. Circovirus showed 6% positives samples. This is the firsts study in Colombia to determine the health state to the peccaries.
   Designing landscapes for sustainable bird populations in the Southeastern United States. MOODY, AT*, School of Forestry and Wildlife Sciences, Auburn University, Auburn, Alabama, USA ; Grand, JB, USGS Cooperative Wildlife Research Unit, Auburn University, Auburn, Alabama, USA; Collazo, JA, North Carolina Cooperative Fisheries & Wildlife Research Unit, Raleigh, North Carolina, USA; Jones, T, USFWS, Atlantic Coast Joint Venture, Laurel, Maryland, USA; Watson, C, USFWS, Atlantic Coast Joint Venture, Charleston, South Carolina,, USA
Bird abundance in the United States has been declining for over half a century likely as a result of habitat changes. In the Southern U.S., urban areas are growing reducing forested area and increasing fragmentation, resulting in decreasing bird populations. Long term, climate change is expected to lead to alternations in precipitation and temperature patterns and sea level rise will reduce coastal habitat. It is therefore important to conserve both what is currently present and to plan for imminent conservation challenges. We developed a priority scheme for conserving bird habitat in around Charleston, SC, USA that takes into account current conservation priorities as well as future predictions of climate change. We used 30 focal species selected by experts to represent the needs of a larger list of species that we are unable to include because of resources restrictions. To produce current conservation priorities, species' predicted distributions, habitat suitability and population connectivity features were used as layers in a spatially-explicit model. The model was smoothed using kernel density estimators with kernel size based on dispersal distance. We used urbanization and climate models to predict habitat 100 years into the future and repeated spatially-explicit model at each 25 year time-step. Priority maps were created by combining spatially-explicit models for all species resulting in maps that showed key habitat conservation areas.
   Proximity of Forest Restoration Treatments to Subsequent Wildfire in the Western US: Do We Need to Rethink Management Objectives? Nelson, C.R.*, University of Montana ; Schoennagel, T, University of Colorado; Dobrowski, S.Z, University of Montana; Snetsinger, S., University of Montana
Forest restoration is increasingly becoming a primary focus of natural resource management in the western US. During the last five years, federal managers have implemented over 44,000 fuels treatments to reduce risk of catastrophic fire to communities and restore forests and rangelands. Policy makers and managers are assigning substantial ecological and economic benefits to these treatments, such as deterring adverse ecological impacts of severe wildfire and reducing high costs of wildfire suppression and post-fire rehabilitation. These benefits are based on the assumption that treated stands will burn; however, there has been no analysis of the location of treatments with respect to subsequent wildfire, bringing into question a fundamental assumption of national wildfire policy. We analyzed spatial patterns of treatments implemented from 2004-2007 by federal land managers in the western US and wildfires that burned in 2005-2008. Results show that only a small proportion (< 5%) of area treated was located within 2.5 km of a subsequent wildfire. Findings suggest the need 1) for improved strategies for prioritizing treatment locations, and 2) for expanding the objectives of forest restoration treatments to improve ecological outcomes in the absence of subsequent wildfire.
   Correcting Phylogenetic Diversity for Sampling Effort by Rarefaction Nipperess, DA*, Macquarie University, Australia
Phylogenetic Diversity (PD) is a measure of biodiversity that takes into account the degree of evolutionary divergence between species (or equivalent). It is a popular method in conservation biology where it has been applied particularly to the problem of prioritising land units for conservation. Like other measures of biodiversity, it is important to consider sampling effort, especially when comparing separate locations. The common approach to this problem is to use rarefaction to calculate expected biodiversity for a given number of organisms or collections. Exact analytical solutions are available for calculating the rarefaction of species richness but that has not been the case for PD. I show how existing rarefaction formulae can be generalised to accommodate PD. Further, the concept of rarefaction can now be extended to calculate expected PD for a given number of species, as well as individuals and collections. Tests on simulated data show that rarefaction of PD is sensitive to the shape of the phylogenetic tree and can also be affected by the distribution of individuals among species and species among collections. As an example, I map expected and actual PD for the mammal fauna of a selection of terrestrial ecoregions and show how comparing actual diversity with expected diversity can affect the selection of conservation hotspots. Rarefaction for the calculation of expected PD is an important new tool for conservation.
   Unintended Consequences of Immunocontraception: Recipient Mares (Equus caballus) Extend Ovulatory Cycling into the Non-breeding Season Nunez, CMV*, Princeton University ; Adelman, JS, Princeton Universtiy; Rubenstein, DI, Princeton University
Although the physiological effects of immunocontraceptive treatment with porcine zona pellucida (PZP) are well studied, little is known about PZP’s effects on the scheduling of reproductive cycling. Recent research indicates that PZP recipients may extend the receptive period into the non-breeding season. To determine if this is the case, we compiled foaling data from wild horses (Equus caballus) living on Shackleford Banks, North Carolina for 3 years pre- and 8 years post-contraception management with PZP. Gestation lasts 11-12 months in wild horses, placing conception at approximately one year prior to birth. Foaling occurred over a broader range post-management than it did pre-management. In addition, foaling in recipient females occurred over a broader range, and later in the year, than did foaling in non-recipient females. Females receiving more consecutive PZP applications gave birth later in the season than did females receiving fewer applications. For a gregarious species such as the horse, such extension of reproductive cycling is likely to have severe demographic and social consequences, including decreased group stability and increased foal mortality. Furthermore, reproductive cycling into the winter months enables animals to circumvent the contraceptive effects of PZP, lowering its efficacy. Managers should consider these factors before enacting immunocontraceptive programs.
   The influence of landscape characteristics and anthropogenic factors on waterhole use by Vulnerable Nubian ibex Capra nubiana in south egypt. Omar Attum, conservation specialist ; sayed el nouby, ranger ; Ibrahim N. Hassan*, ranger
Waterholes are a limited resource vital to the conservation of biodiversity in arid ecosystems. Given the rarity of natural waterholes in deserts and their presumed importance to Vulnerable Nubian ibex Capra nubiana, we examined the influence of landscape characteristics and anthropogenic factors on ibex presence at waterholes. Our results suggest that anthropogenic factors play a larger role in waterhole use than landscape characteristics. Ibex used waterholes regardless of maximum waterhole diameter, maximum water depth or width of the valley in which the waterhole was located. However, ibex were significantly more likely to use waterholes that were far from human dwellings and that had not been visited recently by feral donkeys.Waterhole and ibex conservation will require working with local communities to protect, and ensure sustainable use of, this vital resource.
   Landscape Structure and Farm Management Drivers of Bee Communities and Delivery of Pollination Services to Pigeonpea in Kenya. Otieno, M.*, Centre for Agri-Environmental Research, University of Reading ; Woodcock, B.A., NERC, Centre for Ecology and Hydrology; Wilby, A., Department of Biological Sciences, University of Lancaster; Mauchline, A.L., Centre for Agri-Environmental Research, University of Reading; Vogiatzakis, I.N., Centre for Agri-Environmental Research, University of Reading; Potts, S.G., Centre for Agri-Environmental Research, University of Reading
Insect pollinator communities in agricultural fields may be influenced by local farm management and the context of the farm in the wider landscape. However, the spatial scales at which these two sets of drivers interact and operate are not fully understood, particularly in Africa. We investigated the impacts of these drivers in tandem, on bee communities in a tropical context and their ability to deliver pollination services to pigeonpea crop. The study was conducted in a series of six paired farms along a gradient of landscape contexts in Kibwezi, Kenya. Results show bee abundance to be positively influenced by habitat edge density at 1km spatial scale, while species richness is positively enhanced by a combination of habitat complexity and connectivity. Both bee abundance and species richness positively correlated with fruitset. These findings may reflect that fact that structurally complex habitats surrounding crop fields enhance diversity of organisms by providing alternative forage resources, resulting into spillovers of ecosystem services to crops. Pesticide application exerted negative pressure on abundance and species richness. Conservation of bee communities and sustained pigeonpea pollination may be enhanced by targeting a reduction in pesticide application combined with maintaining a high density of semi-natural habitats within agricultural fields.
   Conservation Easements and Climate Change Owley-Lippmann, Jessica*, Assistant Professor, Pace Law School
Increasing environmental problems, including those associated with climate change, highlight the need for land conservation. One of the most common private conservation tools is the conservation easement. This property law tool appears to provide a creative method for achieving widespread conservation. Unfortunately, however, conservation easements often fail to accommodate the reality of our environmental problems. These perpetual (often private) agreements lack of flexibility, making them inappropriate tools for environmental protection in the context of climate change and our evolving understanding of conservation biology. My work examines the widespread use of conservation easements as a tool for long-term conservation, explaining why conservation easements are unlikely to satisfy conservation goals. The dire need for land conservation indicates the necessity of a multi-tiered holistic approach. Mere reliance on private land conservation will be inadequate to address the increasing environmental problems. In fact, the current style and use of conservation easements may actually hamper efforts to preserve land. After addressing the implications of change on current conservation easements, this article explores ways to incorporate environmental change into future conservation easements. Carefully drafting the purpose sections of easement agreements and setting forth clear procedures to accommodate change will increase the robustness of conservation easements.
   Community-based Biodiversity Conservation Management of Forest Fragments: Key to the Survival of Threatened Wildlife in Cebu lsland, Philippines Paguntalan, Lisa Marie J., Cebu Biodiversity Conservation Foundation ; Jakosalem, Philip Godfrey C., Cebu Biodiversity Conservation Foundation; Roxas, Orlyn O.*, Cebu Biodiversity Conservation Foundation; Sarona, Madelyn C., Cebu Biodiversity Conservation Foundation
The forest patches of Cebu support remnant populations of some of the world’s most threatened species and subspecies. The largest forest in Cebu is found in Alcoy supports populations of the critically endangered Cebu Flowerpecker, endangered Black Shama and the critically endangered Cebu Cinnamon trees. Nine of the 12 endemic subspecies of birds previously believed extinct in the island were also observed in the area. The community-based biodiversity conservation program started in 2000 contributed to an increase in the number of observed nesting forest birds, reduced incidence of timber poaching and hunting inside the forest. Community-based conservation education programs led by out-of-school youth volunteers also significantly contributed to the increase in community support for conservation activities. The community support generated by the project prompted local governments to support biodiversity conservation initiatives in the area. The integration of the community-based biodiversity conservation program into the local government’s conservation agenda, its challenges and lessons learnt will serve as a guide in successful species and habitat conservation program
   Rhetorical Analysis of the Yellowstone Grizzly Delisting Debate Parker, I. D., Texas A&M University ; Feldpausch-Parker, A. M. *, Texas A&M University
The Yellowstone grizzly bear (Ursus arctos horribilis) delisting debate illustrates how rhetoric can exacerbate fragmentation and polarization within endangered species conflicts. The debate coalesced as the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service began proceedings to delist the Yellowstone population from the endangered species list in 2005. Our objective was to use a rhetorical analysis to gain insight into the strategies used by disputants in Endangered Species Act conflicts and suggest ways to improve conflict management. By analyzing web-based texts from 1998-2009, we found that grizzly rhetoric fell into 3 main appeals: authority, ethics and identity. Arguments relying on these appeals contributed to destructive communication amongst stakeholders. The Endangered Species Act’s lack of directives related to climate change further complicated the debate. We demonstrated how rhetorical analyses can reveal disputants’ preferred social control frameworks, thus enabling managers to promote common ground between otherwise conflicted stakeholders that leads to legitimate and lasting policy decisions.
   Mixed methods approach to developing a connection to nature scale Pennisi, Lisa*, University of Nebraska-Lincoln ; Holland, Stephen, University of Florida
Connection to nature is related to the values that guide behavior, role identities and group identities. Hence it may be a significant motivator of behavior, including park visitation and environmentally responsible behaviors. To better understand, define and measure a person’s level of relationship or connection to nature a mixed methods approach was used for this study. This approach facilitated a more thorough understanding of people’s relationship to nature and aided in developing a scale that reflected this understanding. Interviews were conducted to explore how people felt about nature. Thematic analysis of the interviews revealed nine themes (appreciation, awe, caring behaviors, fear, identity, oneness, restoration, sorrow and spirituality) that describe different aspects of how people feel about the natural world. Items were developed for each theme based on the analysis and the interviews themselves. The initial pool of 220 items were analyzed through a series of tests until a final survey instrument was developed. The final scale consists of 26 items across six dimensions (awe, fear, identity, restoration, sorrow and spirituality). Confirmatory factor analysis confirmed the fit of the model to the data.
   The Use of Local Ecological Knowledge to Enhance Conservation Efforts in Tropical Dry Forests: A Nicaraguan Case Study PETRIELLO, MA*, Northern Arizona University ; Suzanne E. Hagell, Northern Arizona University; Carol L. Chambers, Northern Arizona University
The effective integration of human and wildlife dimensions into conservation planning has become a considerable focus of management agencies and community-based conservation (CBC) initiatives worldwide. We conducted 94 semi-structured interviews to identify local knowledge, perceptions, and conservation concerns regarding local wildlife (particularly primates) and forest habitats across 8 communities (4 regional groups) in the Rivas Isthmus, Nicaragua. None of the demographic variables (i.e., age, sex, farmer, non-farmer, hunter, non-hunter), except for regional group (p < 0.001), were correlated with responses. Respondents were knowledgeable about local wildlife (>70% of 21 species presented to respondents by flashcards were correctly identified by common name and presence in forests) with regional variations in perceived presence and recognition of “light” and “dark” morphs of spider monkeys (Ateles geoffroyi). Individual economic incentives and reciprocal community benefits (e.g., clean water, medical centers, trash removal) were the most commonly noted “conservation concerns” and elements influencing conservation support (67% total responses), indicating contrasting perceptions of how locals and conservationists interpret “conservation.” Moreover, our case study demonstrates a likelihood of local involvement and support for conservation efforts in this region, with insights into latent participatory biases related to personal experience, socioeconomics, and resultant conservation ethics.
   An Ecosystemic Approach to Environmental Problems and the Cultural Crisis Pilon, AF*, University of São Paulo
Contemporary problems cannot be solved by segmented academic formats, market-place interests or mass-media headlines; instead of “taken for granted issues” (the apparent “bubbles” in the surface), public policies, research and teaching programmes should be examined inside the “boiling pot”, in view of the dynamic and complex configurations intertwining, as donors and recipients, four dimensions of being-in-the-world: intimate (subject’s cognitive and affective processes), interactive (groups’ mutual support and values), social (political, economical and cultural systems) and biophysical (biological endowment, natural and man-made environments). The process of change should enhance the connections and seal the ruptures between the different dimensions, fostering their mutual support and dynamic equilibrium, as they combine to induce the events (deficits and assets), cope with consequences (desired or undesired) and contribute for change (diagnosis and prognosis). Beyond the creation of choices and development of capacities and motivations, education, environment, ethics, health and quality of life must be embedded into and promoted by the cultural, social, political and economical institutions, which are more critical than individual motives and morals. To live better in a better world, new paradigms of growth, power, wealth, work and freedom should be discussed, in view of the development of an ecosystemic model of culture.
   ECOLOGICAL GAP ANALYSIS AND PROTECTED AREAS MANAGEMENT EFFECTIVENESS ASSESSMENT FOR SIX COUNTRIES OF WESTERN BALKANS (DINARIC ARC ECOREGION) Porej, D.*, WWF Mediterranean Programme ; Sovnic, A., WWF Mediterranean Programme; Glasnovic, P., WWF Mediterranean Programme; Bojovic, M., WWF Mediterranean Programme; Satalic, S., WWF Mediterranean Programme; Stefan, A., WWF Mediterranean Programme; Krystufek, B., WWF Mediterranean Programme
4. Dinaric Arc is a region of south-eastern Europe with a surface of approximately 100,000 km2 and more than 6,000 km of coastline, encompassing the whole region facing the eastern Adriatic Sea, including portions of the following countries: Italy, Slovenia, Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Serbia, Montenegro, and Albania. Over thousand islands, outstanding karstic freshwater diversity, diverse flora with a high endemism rate (exceeding 10% of the total flora in some areas), large tracts of forest, and full set of large carnivores consistently classify Dinaric Arc as one of the global biodiversity hot-spots. Ecological gap analysis for the Dinaric Arc indicates that only 6.4% of the region is under protection and that major elements of biodiversity are underrepresented within national PA systems. The most critical situation is in Bosnia and Herzegovina, one of the most biodiversity-rich countries but with only 2.63% of area within PAs. PA management effectiveness assessment was carried out using RAPPAM methodology in all six countries as well. Analyses indicate that existing PA systems are relatively well managed given the low amount of resources available, with Croatia and Slovenia being most advanced. Key challenges are PA staff training, implementing innovative sustainable financing mechanisms (including public-private partnerships), inter-sectoral cooperation and lack of systematized biodiversity data.
   Effects of habitat loss at the landscape scale on the demography of specialist species - Small mammals in the fragmented Atlantic forest, Brazil Puettker, Thomas*, University of Sao Paulo ; Bueno, Adriana A., University of Sao Paulo; Barros, Camila S., University of Sao Paulo; Sommer, Simone, Leibniz Institute for Zoo and Wildlife Research, Berlin; Pardini, Renata, University of Sao Paulo
The importance of the amount of remaining habitat at the landscape scale for the maintenance of functional connectivity for habitat specialist species has been suggested by simulation studies. These studies demonstrated the existence of a critical threshold below which metapopulations disrupt and patch characteristics become important for population persistence. However, empirical evidence remains scarce, presumably due to the large effort necessary to collect appropriate data. In this study we collected capture-mark-recapture data on small mammal populations in small fragments of three landscapes of the Atlantic forest, Brazil. The landscapes differed in total habitat amount (100%, 50%, and 30%). Population demographic parameters (immigration, survival rate, population growth rate) were estimated using program MARK. Specialist species showed lower immigration, lower survival rate as well as lower population growth in small fragments in the less forested compared to the 50% and the 100% forest cover landscape, indicating a fragmentation threshold between 50 and 30% of habitat. The results underline the importance of maintaining a minimum habitat amount in fragmented landscapes for effective conservation of habitat specialist species.
   Distribution in the state of Puebla, Central Mexico Ramirez Bravo OE*, Universidad de las Americas, Puebla ; Bravo Carrete E, Universidad NAcional Autonoma de Mexico; Hernandez Santin C, Universidad de las Americas, Puebla; Schinkel Brault S, Universidad de las Americas, Puebla;
Despite that Puebla is in central Mexico and close to Mexico City little is known about the felid species that inhabit the state. As part of the project the Jaguar in Puebla, we determined the existence of 6 different felids among the state. Data was gathered by surveys among Government offices, non-governmental organizations, Ranchers Associations and local communities. We got reports of jaguars, ocelots, pumas, bobcat, jaguarondi and margay along the state, some of them being the first reports for the area. Also, we concluded that for an effective felid conservation along the state it´s necessary to increase protection along the Sierra Madre Oriental in the north and in the Mixteca in the south west of the Puebla. We expect that further development of this project will help to delimit the principal areas used by the different felid species and to generate a conservation strategy along the state.
   Weather, not climate, defines distributions: temporal correspondence between species records and environmental data improves species distribution models Reside, AE*, CSIRO ; VanDerWal, J, Centre for Tropcial Biodiversity and Climate Change, James Cook University; Kutt, AS, CSIRO; Perkins, G, CSIRO
Accurate predictions of species distributions are essential for assessing the effects of climate change on biodiversity. Species distribution models based on long-term climate averages ignore the subtlety in distribution and climatic tolerances of highly mobile species. Short-term weather better define the distributions of mobile species existing in variable environments than long-term climate measures; therefore distribution modelling should be improved through the use of weather, not climate. We tested this hypothesis using 158 bird species found in Australian tropical savannas. Australian savannas have highly variable spatial and temporal patterns in precipitation that has led to a bird assemblage with variable movement patterns and a high incidence of nomadism. We developed distribution models by relating weather variables from the six month and one year period preceding each bird record during the period 1950-2008. These “weather models” were compared against models built using long-term (30 years) climate averages. Weather models achieved higher model scores than climate models, particularly for wide-ranging, nomadic and desert species. Climate models predicted larger range areas for species, whereas weather models demonstrated suitability fluctuations across months, seasons and years. Models based on long-term climate averages over-estimate availability of suitable habitat and species climatic tolerances, belying species potential vulnerability to climate change. Our results demonstrate the importance of dynamic approaches to species distribution modelling by incorporating organism-appropriate temporal scales.
   dBirds and Bees for Biologists: Why Conservation Biologists should be Concerned about Human Population and Consumption, and What We Can Do About Them Richard Grossman*, Fort Lewis College, Department of Biology ; David Johns, School of Government, Portland State University
The Society for Conservation Biology was founded to bring science to bear on loss of biodiversity. Over the last two decades SCB has contributed to the development of knowledge about the proximate causes of extinction, such as habitat loss and direct persecution of species. Strangely, there has been remarkably little direct work done on the relationship between the proximate causes of species loss and the deeper causes: the growing human footprint resulting from human population increase and human’s extravagant use of the planet’s resources. We will show the relationship between human population growth and rising per capita consumption and species loss, and suggest how conservation scientists can address these issues in their work. The poster will present examples of model programs that aim to slow population growth in biodiversity hot spots. These programs have been successful in increasing the health of people in these areas, increasing the use of contraception, and increasing people’s respect for their environment, but we do not know if they actually decrease loss of biodiversity. Conservation biologists should emphasize the study of the relationship between the human footprint and species loss. We can foster a smaller human footprint by encouraging SCB members to have small families and to live simply, and to teach the advantages of a small footprint.
   Birds and Bees for Biologists: Why Conservation Biologists should be Concerned about Human Population and Consumption, and What We Can Do About Them Richard Grossman*, Fort Lewis College, Department of Biology ; David Johns, School of Government, Portland State University
The Society for Conservation Biology was founded to bring science to bear on loss of biodiversity. Over the last two decades SCB has contributed to the development of knowledge about the proximate causes of extinction, such as habitat loss and direct persecution of species. Strangely, there has been remarkably little direct work done on the relationship between the proximate causes of species loss and the deeper causes: the growing human footprint resulting from human population increase and human’s extravagant use of the planet’s resources. We will show the relationship between human population growth and rising per capita consumption and species loss, and suggest how conservation scientists can address these issues in their work. The poster will present examples of model programs that aim to slow population growth in biodiversity hot spots. These programs have been successful in increasing the health of people in these areas, increasing the use of contraception, and increasing people’s respect for their environment, but we do not know if they actually decrease loss of biodiversity. Conservation biologists should emphasize the study of the relationship between the human footprint and species loss. We can foster a smaller human footprint by encouraging SCB members to have small families and to live simply, and to teach the advantages of a small footprint.
   Building a Better Ecology Textbook from the Ground Up: A Preview of the "SimUText" Climate Change i-chapter Roach, WJ*, SimBiotic Software ; Bird, S., SimBiotic Software; Maruca, S., SimBiotic Software; Meir, E., SimBiotic Software; Steinberg, E., SimBiotic Software; Stal, D., SimBiotic Software; Wallner, J., SimBiotic Software
Electronic or "e-texts" are the current buzz in academic publishing, but most e-texts currently on the market are essentially just scanned versions of existing texts with accompanying web pages. SimBiotic Software has taken a completely different tact, rethinking the textbook concept from the ground-up. With support from the National Science Foundation, we have been developing the SimUText® Active Learning System, a new learning environment that offers interactive chapters that are not just inquiry-based, but are inquiry-driven. Sections of text are integrated with simulations and animations that provide students with instant feedback on their work and offer instructors means to monitor individual student and class progress. Building on our experience and codebase from our widely-used EcoBeaker simulated labs, our first collection of SimUText i-chapters offers a dynamic replacement for the traditional Ecology textbook. This talk presents our SimUText i-chapter on the science of climate change to demonstrate how an inquiry-driven interactive textbook can teach concepts that otherwise can be dry and/or difficult to grasp. We also present some preliminary data from assessments of students and professors who have used SimUText in classes over the past year, indicating that our approach is effective.
   Population density and struture of Ateles hybridus (Primates:Atelidae) in isolated forest fragment Roncancio, NJ*, WCS, colombia programm ; Acosta, A, Universidad de Caldas; Garcia, LM, Universidad de Caldas
Our main goal was to estimate the population density and structure of Ateles hybridus in a forest fragment and evaluate the differences of our results from those reported in other studies. Population density was estimated using distance sampling in line transects. We used DISTANCE 5.0 to calculate the population density. We used graphic confidence interval bars to evaluate the differences in the estimations of population densities. We determined the population structure of A. hybridus using the complete counts of the groups observed during censuses. We estimated 39 individuals/km2 (CI95% = 21.3 - 72.9). This is a high density. The forest fragment surveyed is the smallest with a high density of spider monkeys. This density was not different of the density at other two sites, one of them a mature forest and another a regenerating forest. Nonetheless our results were different from those found in a more elongated fragment of the Magdalena Valley. We found that a single group of nine spider monkeys lived in the fragment. This group size is smaller than the usually group size in spider monkeys. Male:female and female:immature proportions were 1:0.67 and 1:2 respectively. Average subgroup size was 4 individuals, evidencing that subgroup size is not different from previous reports on this genera.
   Population density of Saguinus leucopus (Primates: Cebidae) in forest patches whit different biological and physical qualities in Colombia Roncancio, NJ*, Maestría en Ciencia-Biología, Universidad Nacional de Colombia ; Rojas, W, Universidad de Caldas; Defler, TR, Maestría en Ciencia-Biología, Universidad Nacional de Colombia
Saguinus leucopus is an endemic primate of Colombia. Its distribution is very small and it is on the Andean region of Colombia from 0 until 1500 meter of altitude. This region is one where more habitats are lost by the human activities. S. leucopus is an endangerment species because its small distribution area and habitat lost. The first goal was compare the population density of S. leucopus of forest patches of different alteration level. The second goal was evaluate the relationship of the population density with the size, isolation distance, shape and altitude of the patches. The final goal was evaluate the association of the population density with the plant diversity, height and thick tree, and tree density of the forest patches. The population density was estimated using distance sampling with line transect. The population densities were from 37 until 149 Individual / Km2. We find differences between some patches. The population densities of S. leucopus of the seven patches were separated in three homogeneous groups. Whit Poisson regression, we find that the population density of S. leucopus increases when the patch is more elevated and it is more elongated. Whit Sperman coefficient, there was not significant association of the population density with the plant diversity and the forest structure.
   Setting conservation priorities for land trusts in Alberta Ryan, Sean*, Athabasca University ; Hanson, Lorelei, Athabasca University; Gismondi, Mike, Athabasca University
We examine conservation land trusts in Alberta to determine the methods they use in establishing conservation priorities. To evaluate these methods, we conducted in-depth interviews with members of the land trust community across the province, read the literature related to their conservation activities and then compared these data to the scientific literature published over the past 10 years on this and related topics (e.g., indicator species as proxies for ecological health, various methods for incorporating economic costs when setting conservation priorities, and landscape-scale methods for determining geographically disperse conservation priorities). There was substantial debate in the scientific literature over the most appropriate method for determining conservation priorities. Nevertheless, most of the research argues that setting conservation priorities should (1) be based on multiple indicators of various types (e.g., ecological, economic, historic, and social), (2) account for uncertainty in the data sets, and (3) involve the larger level landscape scale of parcels and their surrounding matrix. Land trusts in AB are currently employing some of these to greater or lesser extents; however, no land trust is currently employing them all in a single robust prioritization method. Consequently, private conservation activity in Alberta could be proceeding sub-optimally and would be enhanced by adopting a more robust prioritization method for selecting conservation projects.
   The importance of spatial heterogeneity in conciliating productive and ecological objectives of a grassland agrolandscape Sabatier R*, INRA Agroapristech, UMR 1048 SADAPT ; Doyen L, CNRS, CERSP, MNHN; Tichit M, INRA Agroapristech, UMR 1048 SADAPT
Recent studies have shown that heterogeneity at landscape scale could be a major driver of ecological performance of agrolandscapes. Objective of this study was to model the multi-scale interactions between grassland management by farmers and bird dynamics. We built a dynamic model linking grazing and mowing regimes to grassland bird dynamics at the landscape scale. This model is built using the mathematical framework of the viability theory. The algorithm we use is based on a backward approach that looks for spatio-temporal combinations of land uses that respect both ecological and productive constraints. Model simulations showed that bird trends were well explained by simple indices such as landscape structure and proportions of land uses. Depending on the land uses taken into account the main drivers of ecological performances were either the structure of the landscape or the proportion of land uses. A high level of heterogeneity made possible for the birds to use complementary habitats to compensate for local negative impacts of agricultural practices. We advocate that in agroecosystems, conciliation of conservation and production should be based on schemes defined at the landscape scale.
   Dwarf shrubs as energy supply and fodder. Competing ecosystem services in the Eastern Pamirs Samimi, C*, University of Vienna ; Vanselow, K, University of Erlangen; Kraudzun, T, FU Berlin; Kreutzmann, H, FU Berlin
For the Eastern Pamirs the limited number of studies and publications identifies energy issues besides grazing as one key issue. All studies recognize the increasing use of dwarf shrubs as fire wood after the collapse of the Soviet Union. Before the independence of Tajikistan the region was supplied with all fossil fuels from outside. But even then fire wood was used for cooking. With independence this supply structure immediately collapsed and coal and fuel is no freely traded. Fuel wood extraction is in direct competition to grazing, another provisioning ecosystem service. Because of the extreme climatic conditions the Eastern Pamirs are almost exclusively utilized for livestock production in the form of mobile animal husbandry. Dwarf shrubs are important fodder plants especially in winter when they still have high protein content and can be accessed by animals. Grazing and energy pose the most important ecological services in the Eastern Pamirs and are strongly linked, not only because of the competition for the dwarf shrubs, but also because animal dung is a further significant energy resource. Contrary to published assumptions dwarf shrubs are still not rare even in relatively close proximity to settlements. But increasing pressure on the resources could lead to degradation and so a sound management is required. Especially alternatives for the energy supply on a regenerative basis should be part of the solution for a sustainably developing this remote region.
   Role of religion in community based conservation Sarker, F U*, Journalist and conservation worker
Bangladesh is a small country, but huge population, which is increasing rapidly. To meet their demand of food and shelter, forests are disappearing quickly. Three or four decades ago there were lot of homestead or rural forests. Birds and animals of these forests are now in critical position. Such as Large Indian Civet, Pulm Civet, Fishing Cat, Porcupine, Ant-eater, Fox and Jackels, many species of frogs and lizards, snakes are rapidly disapperaring. There were 18 species of owls in Bangladesh, now you will find hardly 5 or 6 species with very small number. Main cause of this decline is that, they are not getting proper trees for breeding. Same condition for other birds, who breeds in the tree hole. Another big reason of number loss, is shortage of food. They can not share the fruits, which has economic value. It is necessary to plant and conserve the trees of such fruits, which are not used by man. It can be done in the river side, road side and campuses. General people is not at all aware about wildlife conservation. It can be done with the help of mosque-based Imams (religious leader). People obey them. Bangladesh is a muslim country and there are more than one mosque in every village. So they can do a lot in this field. But first of all, we have to develop awareness among the Imams. At the same time school and Madrasa (religious school) teachers can do a lot to make awareness about conservation.
   Building A Case For Biodiversity In Climate Change Adaptation SARNAIK JAYANT*, Applied Environmental Research Foundation ; Mungikar Rahul, Applied Environmental Research Foundation; Sameer Punde, Applied Environmental Research Foundation
The climate change discussions revolve around reducing emissions, creating awareness about its impacts, conducting research on mitigation measures and promoting low carbon energy alternatives. There is certain degree of disregard for biodiversity in strategies promoted for climate change adaptation. This is a serious cause of worry considering the alarming rate of biodiversity loss across the world. Plant based biofuels, widely accepted as a viable climate change mitigation strategy; mainly in debate due to their negative environmental impact can actually become a savior of biodiversity. A resource assessment carried out in coastal region of Maharashtra, India for determining the potential of IUCN redlist species Calophyllum innophyllum - an oilseed bearing tree species in biofuel production offers evidence for this hypothesis. Total 25 villages were surveyed using stratified sampling strategy in two blocks from Sindhudurg and Ratnagiri district. An extensive survey of individual village was conducted by laying 6-8 systematically laid parallel belt transects measuring 1.5 kms each. The research findings suggest that attractive economic incentives could lead to sustainable utilization and conservation of rare species. The biofuels offer economic opportunities as well as have the potential to address the climate change challenge and thus are a promising opportunity for mainstreaming biodiversity.
   Biodiversity conservation sustainable production in Coffee Agroforestry systems, Western Ghats, India Sathish, BN*, College of Forestry, UAS, Bangalore ; Kushalappa, CG, College of Forestry, UAS, Bangalore
Coffee is the second highly traded commodity in the world next only to oil in value. In the Western Ghats of India majority of coffee growing areas are located with in the hotspots of biodiversity. The area under coffee is increasing drastically at the cost of natural forests. Until recently, most of the native trees species are retained as shade trees but in the recent past, introduction of fast growing, short rotation species like silver oak (Grevillia robusta) is becoming not only a major threat to biodiversity, but also playing a negative role in sustainable coffee production. Hence, the present study was an attempt to throw light on impact of silver oak on biodiversity conservation and sustainable coffee production. The study was carried out in coffee agroforestry of Kodagu district in Western Ghats: largest coffee producing region India. It was found that, the tree diversity was higher in coffee agroforests under semi evergreen vegetation, where coffee has been introduced very recently than the moist deciduous vegetation. With increase in the proportion of Siler oak, there was not only decrease in tree diversity but also the productivity and sustainability of coffee was decreased. In order to prevent such loss, we need to develop appropriate technologies for conservation of biodiversity through PES (payment for ecosystem cervices)
   Can globally available conservation data sets be useful to inform project-level development decision-making? Savy, CE*, Conservation International
A common complaint of development decision-makers is the lack of environmental information available to inform efforts to identify, mitigate and manage potential impacts, particularly in data poor areas. While the existence of fine-scale local data for every possible development locality remains unlikely, a number of globally and nationally compiled datasets have become available that could inform decision-making related to impacts on biodiversity and prioritize further local work. This review, drawn from real-world experiences, highlights the strengths and weaknesses of some well known datasets on global priority regions, protected areas, critical habitats and threatened species in how they can guide environmental risk assessment and reporting in the initial absence of fine-scale data and strategically inform further local assessment at the development site. Weaknesses identified include a relative lack of marine and freshwater data and poor representation of ecosystem process versus pattern. Recent developments and potential strategies for overcoming the weaknesses associated with these datasets are suggested. The costs and benefits of under and over-reliance on such data without appropriate caveats is also highlighted.
   Management Measures to Conserve Turtles in the Rio Negro Basin, Amazon, Brazil SCHNEIDER, LARISSA*, Institute for Applied Ecology, 2617, ACT, Australia ; Ferrara, Camila, Instituto Nacional de Pesquisas da Amazônia. CEP 69050-001. Manaus, Amazonas. Brazil; Vogt, Richard, Instituto Nacional de Pesquisas da Amazônia. CEP 69050-001. Manaus, Amazonas. Brazil; Burger, Joanna, Division of Biological Sciences, Department of Ecology, Evolution, and Natural Resources, Rutgers University, USA
Many species of turtles in the Rio Negro Basin of the Amazon are heavily exploited by people for food and other products, and face other threats as well. After 20 years of work in the Rio Negro Basin, we give practical conservation measures to preserve stable populations of turtles. In general, we suggest that the government allow a small-scale and sustainable take by local rural people and that site-specific educational program be developed to create a conservation ethic by the local rural people for the turtles found in the area where they live. In addition, the Brazilian government should invest in more educational programs, and promote long-term partnerships with Universities and NOGs. The recommended conservation measure for Podocnemis expansa , P. unifilis, P. sextuberculata and P. erythrocephala is to continue to expand nesting beach protection, protect feeding and create artificial nesting habitat. A closed season is necessary for Peltocephalus dumerilianus during the nesting season, giving females a chance to lay eggs before they themselves are eaten. The main problem facing turtle conservation in the Rio Negro is the lack of respect for conservation laws by the local people, lack of enforcement of these laws, and the lack of easy alternatives to their consumption by local populations complicates the prospects for rebuilding turtle stocks in the Amazon.
   Global marine conservation planning for biodiversity, ecosystem services, and human well-being Selig, ES*, Conservation International ; Turner, WR, Conservation International; Troeng, S, Conservation International; Halpern, BS, National Center for Ecological Analysis and Synthesis; Kaschner, K, Albert-Ludwigs-University; Laschelles, B, BirdLife International; Rosenberg, AA, Conservation International
Marine conservation efforts have historically been limited by a lack of global spatial data on biodiversity and threat. Without these data, it has been difficult to galvanize financing similar to that in terrestrial ecosystems to allow for comprehensive ocean zoning and the protection of areas in greatest need of conservation. We synthesized global data on biodiversity and threat as well as ecosystem services and the human well-being benefits provided by marine ecosystems to assess potential locations of worldwide conservation importance. For assessing biodiversity we looked at three metrics: species richness and endemism for more than 9000 species as well as ecologically significant areas (e.g. turtle nesting sites, seabird breeding and foraging areas, etc.). We used existing models on 17 human threats to marine ecosystems such as fisheries exploitation and climate change. We then assessed status of commercially important fisheries stocks within exclusive economic zones and human dependence on protein from fisheries – adjusting the value of these services according to our data on threat and the potential sustainability of the fisheries. Together these data highlight 15 areas where conservation is most urgently needed to ensure the long-term delivery of ecosystem services to people while protecting essential biodiversity.
   Assessment of the External and Photic Patrs of the Caves in Camotes Islands, Central Philippines Serapion N. Tanduyan*, Cebu Technological University ; Heizel Faith L. Gorgonio , Cebu Technological University;
ASSESSMENT OF THE EXTERNAL AND PHOTIC PARTS OF THE CAVES IN CAMOTES ISLANDS, CENTRAL PHILIPPINES TANDUYAN, SERAPION N. and Heizel Faith L. Gorgonio Cebu Technological University 6050 San Francisco Cebu Campus, San Francisco, Cebu, Philippines standuyan@yahoo.com Abstract Caves of Camotes Islands were studied due to tourism development of the country. A field study technique and interview were used in order to find out their physical features as well their floral and faunal components. It has an area from 1,500 to 15,000 m2 with water depth from 1m to 15 m. Mouth sizes ranges from 0.13 meter to 15 meters.. Stalactite heights range from 4 inches to 7 inches. Stalagmite heights range from 5 inches to 7.5 ft. Plants includes species of ferns, moss and water lilies. Faunal components are birds, shrimps, crabs and fishes. Salinity ranges from 6 to 22 ppt.and pH ranges from 6.79 to 7.48. External features are rocky and grassy areas with mango, coconut and gemelina growing together with shrubs and bananas.
   More Than a Decade of Buffer Zone Program: Is It Buffering? A Case Study from Nirmalbasti VDC, Buffer Zone, Chitwan National Park, Nepal Sharma, Amrit Prasad*, Tribhuwan University ; Bhuju, Dinesh Raj, National Academy of Science and Technology
Community participation in protected area management has been initiated through buffer zone program in Nepal since 1996. But, the amelioration of conflict and ensuring conservation along with sustainable livelihood of the local residents has become a real challenge. In this context, Nirmalbasti VDC, Buffer Zone, Chitwan National Park was examined as a case study to understand the ecological and economic buffering applying qualitative and quantitative research methods. Vegetation analysis and questionnaire survey were done by using stratified random sampling. The study area was sufficient to fulfill the demand of the fuel wood and timber in a sustainable way but it was unable to fulfill the demand of fodder. There was the improvement in the forest status but use of fuel wood by all households as a fuel revealed the sole dependency on forest. Meanwhile, 23.9% had no idea about buffer zone program at all, 37.3% had no idea about the distribution of fund and 79.1% had no idea about the rules and regulation of buffer zone. In the study area, 82.08% of sampled households were suffering from crop raiding. Conclusively, there was the impediment on ecological buffering due to poor economic buffering.
   Fine-scale genetic structure in Little Penguins is influenced by climatic and oceanographic variables Sinclair, JJ*, 1. Evolution & Ecology Research Centre, School of BEES, University of New South Wales, Sydney, 2052 AUSTRALIA ; Cannell, BL, 2. Sustainability, Environmental and Life Sciences, Murdoch University, WA, 6150 AUSTRALIA; Bradley, JS, 2. Sustainability, Environmental and Life Sciences, Murdoch University, WA, 6150 AUSTRALIA; Wooller, RD, 2. Sustainability, Environmental and Life Sciences, Murdoch University, WA, 6150 AUSTRALIA; Sherwin, WB, 1. Evolution & Ecology Research Centre, School of BEES, University of New South Wales, Sydney, 2052 AUSTRALIA
Little Penguins, the smallest member of the Penguin family are endemic to Australia and New Zealand and are threatened by urbanisation and climate change. Human disturbance and the introduction of feral pests and invasive weeds have resulted in habitat reduction throughout the Little Penguin’s range. In Australia, populations are now restricted mainly to coastal islands free of predators and large human settlement. In Western Australia, the population at Penguin Island is the northernmost extent of Little Penguin distribution and hosts the largest colony of Little Penguins in WA. Located within the Perth metropolitan region, 600m offshore from the industrial precinct of Rockingham, the population at Penguin Island is threatened by rapid urban expansion and the impacts of climate change. At Penguin Island, mortality and reproductive success are strongly influenced by ENSO events and the strength of the Leeuwin current. Source populations located near Esperance WA were identified by multilocus and mtDNA genetic analyses. However, genetic estimates of dispersal indicate that gene flow is now restricted by oceanographic currents and could be affected by increasing sea surface temperatures and ENSO events. These results indicate that conservation of the Penguin Island colony depends largely on ensuring management practices address factors influenced by climate variability and connectivity with neighbouring penguin colonies.
   Fish Biomass Structure at Pristine Coral Reefs and Degradation by Fishing Singh, Ahbinav*, University of Munich ; Wang, Hao, University of Alberta; Morrison, Wendy, Georgia Tech
Until recently, the only examples of inverted biomass pyramids have been in freshwater and marine planktonic communities. In 2002 and 2008 investigators documented inverted biomass pyramids for nearly pristine coral reef ecosystems within the NW Hawaiian islands and the Line Islands, where apex predator abundance comprises up to 85% of the fish biomass. We build the first refuge based consumer-resource model to study the fish biomass structure at coral reefs and investigate the effect of fishing. Utilizing realistic life history parameters of coral reef fish, our model exhibits a stable inverted biomass pyramid. Our model also yields that the predator-prey biomass ratio is now an increasing function of refuge size, a prediction supported by data from Kingman and Palmyra reefs. Understanding predator-prey dynamics in nearly pristine conditions provides a more realistic historical framework for comparison with fished reefs. Our model shows that fishing transforms the inverted biomass pyramid to be bottom heavy. Preliminary results using our model also indicate that larger reefs (those with more inverted predator-prey biomass ratio) take much longer to recover from environmental shocks such has killing half the fish biomass than smaller reefs.
   Effectiveness of an Energy Conservation Intervention in a University Residential Setting Sintov, ND*, University of Southern California ; Prescott, CA, University of Southern California
Recent years have witnessed a large number of university-based energy reduction efforts, but few have been subjected to empirical evaluation. The aim of the present study was to evaluate the effectiveness of a web-based intervention in reducing energy consumption in a university residential setting. The study used a prospective experimental design with a control group. To engage participants, the project was implemented using a building-versus-building competition framework. Participants completed baseline and follow-up self-report surveys regarding energy use behaviors and key constructs related to the Theory of Planned Behavior and the Norm Activation Model, and were encouraged to use a web-based application to access intervention content. A total of 298 students participated in the first survey and 225 in the second, yielding a follow-up rate of 76%. Combined, the target buildings saved 75,000 kWh electricity during the 8-week competition compared to the baseline use levels, indicating that a competition-based intervention was viable in this setting. Only 6 students registered to use the web-based intervention application, however, which suggests that the requirement of registration was a barrier to use. Alternatively, different methods of intervention content delivery may be better suited to this population. At the time this abstract was submitted, additional analyses using the self-report data were under way to investigate individual-level changes.
   How should we predict the relative impacts of management options in conservation? Smith, AC*, Carleton University ; Francis, CM, Environment Canada; Fahrig, L, Carleton University
We must estimate the relative value of different conservation options, to make efficient use of limited resources. This is often done by estimating the relative importance of predictors in a regression model. However, so many different statistical methods are used that comparing results across studies is difficult or impossible. Indeed, in reviewing the literature we found at least eight different statistical metrics, which measure three fundamentally different kinds of statistical information: significance, explained variance, and effect strength. We used simulations to compare these and other metrics and evaluate them against these five criteria: estimates of relative importance for conservation should be unbiased with respect to 1) sample size, 2) variation sampled for each predictor, 3) collinearity, 4) spurious predictors, and 5) suppressor effects. We found that the best measure of relative importance, from both a practical and theoretical standpoint, is a novel metric that we introduce here, proportional partial regression coefficient. It meets all of our criteria and represents the relative potential benefit from independently managing each ecological factor. In contrast, measures of explained variation fail to meet most of the criteria and do not provide clear implications for conservation; while statistical significance and summed Akaike weights fail to meet any of the criteria and are not useful measures of relative importance.
   The Brazilian Chaco: a real and neglected biome Souza, FL*, Universidade Federal de Mato Grosso do Sul ; Uetanabaro, M, Universidade Federal de Mato Grosso do Sul; Filho, PL, Universidade Federal de Mato Grosso do Sul; Piatti, L, Universidade Federal de Mato Grosso do Sul
The Chaco region spreads throughout a larger area in South America, including Brazil, Paraguay, Bolivia, and Argentina. This biome exhibits a high herpetofauna diversity and many endemic amphibians and reptile species. For historical and cultural reasons, the Brazilian Chaco is not considered as a true biome. Instead, it is usually addressed as a contact zone between the Cerrado and the Pantanal wetlands. This identity conflict results in neglected information on the real importance of such area for the Brazilian biodiversity. It was used Parsimony Analyses of Endemicity to assess the contribution of the Brazilian Chaco herpetofauna to the biogeographic pattern of species distribution along the South American dry diagonal, that also includes the Caatinga and Cerrado biomes. A clear biogeographical scenario was found for the dry regions. For amphibians Caatinga, Cerrado, and Chaco formed three distinct groups while for reptiles some Cerrado areas showed affinities with Caatinga. However, the Chaco was a single clado. It is suggested and emphasized that the small Chaco region found in Brazil should be politically considered a real Chaco biome. This definition must result in urgent conservation planning since the region is faced with high anthropic pressures for implantation of agricultural practices on its domains, major cattle farming.
   Distance Sampling for Estimating Springhare, Cape Hare and Steenbok Densities in South Africa Stenkewitz, U*, University of Applied Sciences Eberswalde ; Herrman, E, Department of Tourism, Environment and Conservation; Kamler, JF, Wildlife Conservation Research Unit, The Recanati-Kaplan Centre, Department of Zoology, University of Oxford
Distance sampling using line transects has become a well known method for estimating densities of both large and small mammals in relatively open habitats, although it has not yet been reported for smaller mammals (< 10 kg) in southern Africa. In 2007 and 2008 we used distance sampling to estimate numbers of springhares (Pedetes capensis), Cape hares (Lepus capensis) and steenbok (Raphicerus campestris) on selected farms near Kimberley, South Africa. Surveys for springhares and Cape hares were conducted on Benfontein Game Farm, whereas surveys for steenbok occurred on nearby small-livestock farms. We derived density estimates with relatively low 95% confidence intervals and coefficients of variation for all three species, with only moderate time spent in the field by researchers. Our results suggest distance sampling using line transects is a very useful and efficient technique for estimating densities of springhare, Cape hare and steenbok populations in relatively open and homogenous habitats.
   Starving seabirds, whales, and other ocean predators: Unseen consequences of overfishing Stiles, M.L.*, Oceana ; Elsen, P., Independent consultant; Hirshfield, M.F., Oceana
Hundreds of seabird, whale, and other marine predator species feed on marine fish, and humans are now exploiting these prey fish at the highest rates in history. Seabirds and whales are especially vulnerable to prey shortages due to overfishing that overlaps temporally and spatially with their long-distance migrations, nesting requirements, and target prey. Even predators with a varied diet may rely seasonally on one or a handful of species of small schooling fish to fill their energetic needs. During prey shortages, hungry predators face reduced reproductive success, competition for food, and decreased resilience to climate impacts on their food supply. However, current fisheries management practices do not account for the needs of natural predators. This review identifies species most likely to be affected by commercial fishing of their prey, with recommendations to restrict fishing near breeding and feeding areas, set more conservative catch limits, and suspend the establishment of new fisheries targeting prey fish.
   Moving in the Tundra : Changes in Use of Summer Habitats by Migratory Caribou in Northern Quebec and Labrador Taillon, J*, Département de Biologie, Université Laval, Québec, Québec, G1V 0A6 ; Côté, SD, Département de Biologie, Université Laval, Québec, Québec, G1V 0A6; Festa-Bianchet, M, Département de Biologie, Université de Sherbrooke, Sherbrooke, Québec, J1K 2R1
The tundra is characterized by a short summer with high vegetation biomass. Many birds and mammals migrate north each year to exploit this resource in a habitat with low predation risk. Migratory caribou, Rangifer tarandus, are a dominant herbivore in the tundra ecosystem. Two migratory caribou herds range over nearly one million square kilometres in Northern Québec and Labrador: the Rivière-George herd (RGH) and the Rivière-aux-Feuilles herd (RFH). Over the last few decades, these herds have shown large fluctuations in abundance, recruitment rates, and individual body condition. Our objective was to test whether changes in population dynamics reflected changes in selection and timing of use of summer habitats. Between 1990 and 2009, we fitted more than 200 females with satellite transmitters to identify the location of annual calving grounds and summer ranges for each herd. Our results show a sharp decline in the size and a major shift towards the Labrabor coast of the RGH summer ranges. In contrast, summer ranges of the RFH remained stable in size and cover the entire Ungava peninsula. The timing of use of summer habitats show high annual variability for both herds and seems to be linked to birthmass and recruitment rates. Future analyses will compare patterns of snow melt, topography, and vegetation biomass with the choice and use of calving grounds and summer range, as well as their consequences for the survival and body condition of calves.
   Diversity and Habitat Profile of the Shallow Water Holothurians in Camotes Islands, Central Philippines Tanduyan, SN *, Cebu Technological University ; Ciriaco,PE , Cebu Technological University ; Gonzaga RB , Cebu Technological University ; Garciano,LM , Cebu Technological University ; Andriano, BT, Cebu Technological University
Species diversity and habitat profile of holothurians in Camotes Islands, Cebu Philippines were studied as baseline data for resource conservation management using transect-quadrat and interview guide There are 20 species of holothurians belonging to 3 families namely Holothuriidae, Stichopodidae and Synaptidae. Salinity ranges from 23-38 ppt; temperature is 260C-350C, pH 4.5-8.0. Substrate grain size ranges from 100 to 400 microns.
   Gleaning Methods And Extraction Rate of Holothurians Iin Camotes Islands , Central Philippines Tanduyan, SN *, Cebu Technological University ; Ciriaco,PE , Cebu Technological University ; Gonzaga RB , Cebu Technological University ; Garciano,LM , Cebu Technological University ; Andriano, BT, Cebu Technological University
The declined supply of Holothurians of Camotes Islands was felt by the fishermen; hence, this study was conducted using actual field visit and interview guide. The gleaning methods were handpicking, using bolo, water goggles, pointed wood, iron bars and spears.The gleaned species are Stichopus hermanni, Bohadschia paradoxa, Bohadschia marmorata, Stichopus horrens, Holothuria nobilis, Stichopus variegatus and Holothuria pulla. The size gathered is 5-10 cm and the perceived distribution distance is 1-5m. The CPUE is ½ kilo per 1-2 hours and the gleaning frequency is 2-4 times a week.
   Hot off the tag: How you turn your research into a media sensation using free online social media tools. Teutschel, NM*, University of California Santa Cruz ; Stevens, JE, Tagging of Pacific Predators; Krist, V, Griffmobile Designs; Costa, DP, University of California Santa Cruz
Elephant seal research has captivated both children and adults online at TOPP.org. The Tagging of Pacific Predators (TOPP) deployed satellite tags on northern elephant seals, Mirounga angustirostris, during their 8 month migration to forage along the North Pacific Transition Zone. Elephant Seal Homecoming Days (ESHD) followed Daniel Costa’s lab at UC Santa Cruz as they recovered tags and reported preliminary findings. TOPP’s online community witnessed the migration via researchers on the beach and from the seals themselves. Blogs, video, widgets, images, live tracking data, and feature articles delivered real-time data to individuals and classrooms online. ESHD was designed to incorporate a user-friendly method for researchers to login, upload images, add animal information, blog, and post video using a content management system established at TOPP.org. Furthermore, free social networking tools such as Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Ocean in Google Earth further extended TOPP’s reach into the online community. After a successful pilot project designed by J. Stevens and V. Krist in 2008, ESHD was expanded to showcase additional tagged seals, involve local classrooms and establish an interdisciplinary undergraduate outreach internship program. “Penelope Seal” became a spokes-seal updating her newly acquired >4,000 Facebook friends using RSS feeds from the ESHD blog. Facebook coverage earned the attention of NPRs All Things Considered, The Colbert Report, the Associated Press, and dozens online and regional publications. ESHD proved to be an effective outreach model gaining over 2,000 unique page views per day during the height of the program, facilitating public interaction with an active and robust research program.
   The effects of light pollution on the courtship behavior of the firefly Photinus collustrans THANCHAROEN, A.*, Department of Entomology, Faculty of Agriculture, Kasetsart University, Bangkok, Thailand ; Branham, M.A., Department of Entomology and Nematology, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL 32611-0620, USA; Wing, S.R., University of Florida Bridges, PO Box 113359, Gainesville, FL, USA; Lloyd, J.E., Department of Entomology and Nematology, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL 32611-0620, USA
Fireflies (Coleoptera: Lampyridae) are well known as nocturnal insects that require darkness to emit and assess bioluminescent courtship signals. While light pollution is increasing, numerous firefly populations have decreased or disappeared from many habitats. Artificial lights are believed to interfere with the courtship behavior of fireflies. To test the hypothesis, we examined two aspects of the effects of artificial night lighting on the grassland firefly species, P. collustrans: 1) Are male fireflies deterred by the presence of artificial light? and 2) Do males have more difficulty locating females in areas of artificial light? The abundance and activity of male fireflies responding to artificial females (small light-emitting diodes) was compared between light conditions one night (with an artificial light source) and dark conditions the following night (without a light source). Data were recorded daily for one month of the firefly season in Gainesville, Florida. The presence of artificial light did not affect firefly abundance in the examined habitat. Conversely, it strongly affected mate-seeking behavior by males. Artificial light seems to interfere with the males’ ability to see the female response signals. Males of P. collustrans have a short time (approximately 15 minutes nightly) to find a flightless female perched in the grass. Females are scarce on any given night and male success is dependent on the ability to fly and flash over an area to elicit response flashes from perched females, and to detect these response flashes. Light pollution appears to interfere with this flash dialogue and is likely a serious problem for populations of P. collustrans in the long term.
   A Rocha International: Conservation Action During a Time of Opportunity for Christians and Biodiversity THOMAS, SHELLY LYNN*, A Rocha International ; Weatherley, Janice, A Rocha International; Harris, Peter, A Rocha International
To respond to challenges facing biodiversity, partnerships with faith communities are crucial. Human behavior is profoundly influenced by the different faith traditions, and in terms of potential impact, Christianity is the largest (and a rapidly growing) global faith community. A Rocha International is a Christian conservation organization with projects in 18 countries on six continents; projects share a community emphasis and a focus on scientific research, practical conservation and environmental education. For example, A Rocha Lebanon’s biodiversity monitoring programs in the Aammiq marshes have found nine new species for Lebanon and identified a number of globally threatened species. Research, environmental education, advocacy and habitat restoration have transformed the marshes from a badly degraded habitat with intense hunting abuse to a wildlife haven. A Rocha France leads a large public consultation with many stakeholders to develop a shared vision for sustainable use of a large cereal polder, including research into income-generating activities (e.g. crayfish fishing, reed harvesting and ecotourism) and wetland restoration. ARI works with people of all faiths who have a concern for practical conservation at the community level; it works with Christians to increase understanding of the relevance of the faith to environmental issues and promotes conservation action.
   HIV/AIDS through the Lens of Forestry: Health and Environmental Interactions of Forest-Dependent HIV/AIDS-Affected Malawian Households Timko, JA*, AFRICAD (Africa Forests Research Initiative on Conservation and Development), Faculty of Forestry, Univ. of British Columbia (UBC)
In Sub-Saharan Africa, HIV/AIDS is not only a population health issue, but also a development problem with complex links to rural livelihoods, human capacity, and conservation. The majority of Africa’s 600 million people rely on forest products, and HIV/AIDS-affected households increase their reliance on freely available forest resources to buffer the shock of the disease. In many cases, a trend towards more destructive practices – especially related to the increasing use of fuelwood, medicinal plants, and charcoal – has been demonstrated. Given a dearth of research on this topic, this presentation will increase the knowledge base and enhance understanding about the interactions between HIV/AIDS, livelihoods, and forest resources in rural Malawian communities. A social analysis using focus groups, key informant interviews, household surveys, and forest transect walks tested the hypothesis that there was a positive feedback loop, whereby impoverished HIV/AIDS-affected households increasingly depended on forest resources for their food security and livelihoods, resulting in further forest degradation and deforestation which compromised their abilities to continue to meet these critical needs. Particular attention was paid to local forest-related innovations that had been developed or adapted locally to mitigate or prevent the impacts of HIV/AIDS; these will be discussed in detail.
   Proximate causes of caribou calf mortality in a declining population: Implications for population recovery Trindade, Mariana, Department of Environment & Conservation, Government of Newfoundland & Labrador, St. John’s, NL A1B 4J6, Canada ; Norman, F., Department of Environment & Conservation, Government of Newfoundland & Labrador, St. John’s, NL A1B 4J6, Canada; Soulliere, C.E., Department of Environment & Conservation, Government of Newfoundland & Labrador, St. John’s, NL A1B 4J6, Canada; Lewis, Keith P.*, Department of Environment & Conservation, Government of Newfoundland & Labrador, St. John’s, NL A1B 4J6, Canada
The woodland caribou population on the island of Newfoundland, Canada has declined by more than 66% in recent years. Adult survival and productivity remain relatively high but recruitment rates are very low. In 2003, we initiated a study to determine the causes, rates, and timing of calf mortality in the population. To date, 586 calves from 5 herds were radio-collared and monitored. Annual survival rates ranged from 0-17%, (compared with 66% from 1979-1997). Predation was the primary proximate cause of death accounting for >80% of mortality (1979-1997: 59%). Since the 1970s-1990s, when the caribou population was increasing, the predator guild has changed: in addition to the continued influence of black bear and Canada lynx, eastern coyote arrived on the island in the late 1980s and bald eagle are now important calf predators in some regions. The importance of specific predators varies across the island, but black bear and coyote are the most prominent predators in all regions. These results highlight the need to continue to monitor calf survival on the island of Newfoundland, as current calf survival remains below what is needed to maintain stable population levels. Further, the strong link between calf mortality and their predators has implications for ecosystem management and the capacity for caribou populations to recover.
   Technical reclamations of postindustrial sites are squandering their conservation potential Tropek, R*, Institute of Entomology, Biology Centre, Czech Academy of Sciences & Faculty of Science, University of South Bohemia, Branisovska 31, CZ-370 05 Ceske Budejovice, Czech Republic ; Kadlec, T, Institute of Entomology, Biology Centre, Czech Academy of Sciences, Branisovska 31, CZ-370 05 Ceske Budejovice, Czech Republic & Faculty of Science, Charles University, Vinicna 7, CZ-128 43 Prague, Czech Republic; Hejda, M, Institute of Botany, Czech Academy of Sciences, CZ-252 43 Pruhonice, Czech Republic & Faculty of Science, Charles University, Vinicna 7, CZ-128 43 Prague, Czech Republic; Černá, I, Faculty of Science, University of South Bohemia, Branisovska 31, CZ-370 05 Ceske Budejovice, Czech Republic; Karešová, P, Faculty of Science, University of South Bohemia, Branisovska 31, CZ-370 05 Ceske Budejovice, Czech Republic; Spitzer, L, Institute of Entomology, Biology Centre, Czech Academy of Sciences & Faculty of Science, University of South Bohemia, Branisovska 31, CZ-370 05 Ceske Budejovice, Czech Republic; Straka, J, Faculty of Science, Charles University, Vinicna 7, CZ-128 43 Prague, Czech Republic; Konvička, M, Institute of Entomology, Biology Centre, Czech Academy of Sciences & Faculty of Science, University of South Bohemia, Branisovska 31, CZ-370 05 Ceske Budejovice, Czech Republic
The view of postindustrial sites is rapidly changing, as many studies confirm their values as biodiversity refuges in human-exploited regions. In this context, used restoration method is crucial for their conservation potential, especially because technical reclamations, consisting of covering the sites by topsoil, sowing herb mixtures and planting trees, still prevail. We compared vascular plants and 10 arthropod groups at technically restored and spontaneously vegetated plots in limestone quarries, vascular plants and 8 arthropod groups at black coal spoil dumps, and wild bees and spiders in ash-slag sedimentary basins in the Czech Republic, Central Europe. Spontaneously restored sites did not differ in species richness from technically reclaimed ones, but they supported significantly more threatened species and rare xeric specialists, which mostly avoided reclaimed plots. Our results show that the high conservation potential of postindustrial sites could be realized by allowing succession to progress spontaneously, with minimal intervention. Given the decline of semi-natural sparsely vegetated habitats in many regions, active restoration measures at postindustrial sites should be limited to maintenance of early successional stages, instead of acceleration of succession.
   Climate Change: Will Nature Survive the Human Response? Turner, WR*, Conservation International ; Bradley, BA, Amherst College; Estes, LD, Princeton University; Hole, DG, Conservation International; Oppenheimer, M, Princeton University; Wilcove, DS, Princeton University
Climate change poses profound, direct, and well-documented threats to biodiversity. A large fraction of Earth's species may be extinguished by changing precipitation and temperature regimes, rising and acidifying oceans, climate-driven loss of habitat, and other factors. There is also growing awareness of the diversity and magnitude of responses, both proactive and reactive, that people will undertake as lives and livelihoods are affected by climate change. Yet to date scientists and policymakers alike have paid scant attention to the relationship between these two powerful forces. The natural systems upon which people depend, already under direct assault from climate change, are further threatened by how we respond to climate change. Bringing together historical accounts, recent studies, and our own analyses, we find that the actions we take to cope with climate change (adaptation) or lessen its rate and magnitude (mitigation) could have impacts matching or, in some cases, exceeding the direct effects of climate change on ecosystems. As one example, we find that a fifth (20.1%) of Earth's remaining tropical forests, and nearly half (259 of 524) of all Alliance for Zero Extinction (AZE) sites lie within a few days' walk (50 km) of human populations that would be inundated by a 1 m rise in sea level. We outline research and policy agendas needed to anticipate and reduce the risk of these indirect impacts, helping both biodiversity and humanity adapt to a warming planet.
   Use of non-invasive methods to examine road avoidance of big cats and their prey in Calakmul, Mexico Typhenn Brichieri-Colombi*, University of Calgary ; Dr. Shelley Alexander, University of Calgary
In 2007, the Mexican government started to widen Highway 186 that traverses the Calakmul Biosphere Reserve, Mexico, from two to four lanes. We compared the distribution of carnivores (jaguar, puma, ocelot and grey fox) and their prey (tapir, deer and peccary species) within a 2km road effect zone of Highway 186. We expected that sensitive species would occur at greater distances from the highway, which may indicate road avoidance. Our objectives were to compare relative activity (RA) of wildlife species at increasing distances from the highway, and to examine differences amongst years and between seasons. From 2008-2010, we placed 25 cameras on 10 roads perpendicular to the highway at 50m, 750m and 2000m from the highway, and recorded wildlife tracks and signs weekly. Species RA at a camera was calculated as the number of photos of a species divided by the number of functional camera days. Differences in species distribution within the road effect zone, amongst years and between seasons, were examined using chi-square and Kruskal-Wallis H-test. RA of focal species differed by distance from the highway. We observed yearly differences in species distribution suggesting road avoidance. These results provide baseline data for examining the effects of highway widening in the Calakmul.
   Will Jabel Elba's Dragon tree survive the next period of climate change?. The current and future potential distribution of endangered Dracaena ombet in Egypt. Usama Mohammed*, Protected Area manager
The effects of climate change are likely to be the greatest challenge to plant conservation in the twenty-first century. We used the global endangered Dracaena ombet tree as indicator of how global warming may cause species extinction. In 2007 and with support from Conservation Leadership Program, we conducted survey for species population's status in Egypt. Ten wades were surveyed; the entire range of D.ombet in Egypt was mapped and its current distribution; abundance and age structure of populations were assessed. We used a model of 7 indices includes: Population size, Extent of Occurrence (EOO), Area of Occupancy (AOO), Age classes structure, population trend, population healthy status and climatic variables. Using this model, a predicted potential map for 2017 climatic scenario was generated. Its distribution and abundance are correlated to three factors: the annual precipitation, mean annual temperature and slope, according to our survey and the model, D. ombet facing an accelerated decline due to climatic changes, drought and habitats fragmentation. Population size is 383 trees, 55% of it was vanished with no signs for new generation, it predicted to lose 72.43% of its population size by 2017. There is 1.61% shrinking in the extent of occurrence, it predicted to be 25.5% by 2017. The decline in Area of Occupancy is 36.36% and it predicted to be 60% by 2017. On bases of the obtained results, we urgently recommended prepare and implement a species conservation action for D.ombet.
   Conservation status of globally endangered Dragon tree (Dracaena ombet) and need for Bio-Indicator Based Early Warning System for climate change in Egypt. Usama Mohammed, Protected Area manager ; ahmed mansour*, ranger
Dracaena ombet listed in the IUCN red list as endangered plant. D. ombet is recorded in the highest inaccessible zones of slopes on Elba Mountain in Egypt and also in Sudan, Djibouti, Ethiopia and Somalia. Globally there is lack for up-to-date data about this species although it is in rapid decline. In 2007 we conducted an eco-geographical survey, to identify its distribution and current status in Egypt. Ten sites were surveyed and analyzed; the D.ombet trees and its geographical location were tracked with the aid of GPS. Trees density, DBH and population status were estimated. The populations' survey results and used species status's indices indicated that species are facing an accelerated decline due to climatic changes and drought effect, the population size is 383 trees, 55% of it were vanished, only 194 tree still survived with no signs for new generation, there is 1.65% shrinking in populations' extent of occurrence, it predicted to be 25.51% by 2017. The decline in Area of Occupancy of population is 36.36% and it predicted to be 60% by 2017. D.ombet will loose 25% of its suitable habitats by 2017 due to climate changes and habitats fragmentation. On bases of the obtained results, we prepared the species' conservation indices and recommended adoption the dragon tree as a Bio-indicator for an early warning system for climate change in Egypt. Urgently we recommended prepare Dracaena ombet's long-term monitoring program and species conservation action for this species.
   Let’s take a breath together VALERIA SENIGAGLIA*, università degli studi di parma ; hal whitehead, dalhousie university
Several cetacean species used to surface synchronized. We studied what could influence this behaviour in the long-finned pilot whales (Globicephala melas). We looked at the difference in synchronicity according to environmental and social parameters and we analyzed the data using GLM and AIC. Our results show a positive correlation between the group size and the synchronization of the whales, with less influence of the behaviour. The time elapsed between the first sight of the pod and the actual start of the video also appears to have an influence on synchronization, leading to the conclusion that the extended presence of the boat was a source of stress for the animals. We interpret synchronization as a defensive technique as happens for other species but there could be other explanation such as a way to improve communication and as a demonstration of the social bonds. This study could help in the sustainable management of whale-watching activities.
   synchronized respirational pattern in Pilot Whales VALERIA SENIGAGLIA*, università degli studi di parma ; hal whitehead, dalhousie university
Whale-watching is now one of the greatest business in ecoturism but the effects of it on animals' behaviour are still uncertain and a better comprehension of them is crucial in order to mitigating the potential threat of anthropogenic disturbance. Several cetacean species surface in synchrony and I studied this behaviour in the long-finned Pilot Whales, a common but relatively unstudied specie. I looked at the difference in synchronicity according to environmental and social variables. I videoed pairs of individuals in order to gain the data on the breathing patterns of the whales and analyzed them through the construction of mathematical models. The results show a positive correlation between the group size and the synchronization of the whales, with less influence of the behaviour. The time elapsed between the first sight of the pod and the actual start of the video also appears to have an influence on synchronization, leading to the conclusion that the extended presence of the boat was a source of stress for the animals. I interpret synchronization as a defensive technique, as happens for other species (e.g. stenella longirostris), but there could be other explanation, such as a way to improve communication and as a demonstration of the close social relationship within sub-groups of few individuals among a bigger pod.. This study could help in the sustainable management of whale-watching activities.
   Ten Friends to Remember: Storytelling as a Conservation Education Tool in Sigiriya, Sri Lanka Veríssimo, Diogo*, Durrell Institute of Conservation and Ecology, University of Kent, UK ; Fernando, Sudarshani , Centre for Eco-Cultural Studies, Sri Lanka; Kumara, K. A. D Samantha, Centre for Eco-Cultural Studies, Sri Lanka; De Zoysa, Asanka, Centre for Eco-Cultural Studies, Sri Lanka; Jasinghe, Sujeewa , Centre for Eco-Cultural Studies, Sri Lanka
The communication of conservation messages needs to be effective if communities living alongside wildlife are to take part in the conservation efforts. The project “Ten friends to remember” devised by the Centre for Eco-cultural Studies, an NGO based in Sigiriya, Sri Lanka had as a main goal to raise awareness amongst school children for some the issues where wildlife and human interests conflict. The project used storytelling, a transmission medium as old as humankind, to frame issues in a way that relates to the target audience, and used the school a social platform cutting across ethnic and religious segments of the populations to reach the target audience. The result was an illustrated book constituted by ten short stories, covering a varied of environmental topics from human-elephant conflict, the use of animal parts in traditional medicine or the contamination of rivers by agrochemicals. Each story revolves the encounters of a central child character with a relevant Sri Lankan species relevant to the issue to be approached. The book was written in basic English as to serve as potential reading material for English classes mandatory for all primary school children nationwide. In this way the project hopes to win-win situation by facilitation English teaching in the primary schools around Sigiriya and raising awareness for wildlife conservation. Similar synergies should increasingly be part of conservation education programs.
   Bird response to within stand forest structure and edge effects varies with forest productivity Verschuyl, JP*, National Council for Air and Stream Improvement ; Hansen, AJ, Montana State University; McWethy, DB, Montana State University
Currently, the most common strategy when managing forests for biodiversity at the landscape scale is to maintain structural complexity within stands and provide a variety of seral stages across landscapes. Advances in ecological theory reveal that biodiversity at continental scales is strongly influenced by available energy (i.e., climate factors relating to heat and light and primary productivity). We explore how available energy and forest structural complexity may interact to drive biodiversity at a regional scale. We sampled bird communities and vegetation across seral stages and biophysical settings at each of five landscapes arrayed across a productivity gradient from the Pacific Coast to the Rocky Mountains within the northwestern contiguous United States. We analyzed the response of richness to structural complexity and energy covariates at each landscape. We found that (1) richness had a hump-shaped relationship with available energy across the region, (2) energy explained more of the variation in bird species richness than forest structure in energy-limited landscapes, and (3) more bird species responded to changes in forest edge density in more productive forests than in less productive forests. Additionally, we explored the implications for forest management in settings varying in available energy by spatially mapping diversity hotspots.
   Effectiveness of scat detection dogs in determining species presence in a tropical savanna landscape Vynne, C*, University of Washington ; Skalski, JR, University of Washington; Machado, RB, University of Brasilia; Groom, MJ, University of Washington; Marinho-Filho, J, University of Brasilia; Ramos Neto, M.B., Conservation International Brazil; Smith, H, University of Washington; Wasser, SK, University of Washington
The majority of protected areas are insufficient to sustain populations of wide-ranging mammals. Successful conservation strategies for these species must involve habitat beyond park boundaries. Identification of sites that will promote population persistence is a high priority, in particular, for protected areas that reside in regions of otherwise extensive habitat loss. This is the case for Emas National Park, a small but important protected area located in the Brazilian Cerrado. We employed scat detection dogs to survey for five wide-ranging species of conservation concern: maned wolf (Chrysocyon brachyurus), puma (Puma concolor), jaguar (Panthera onca), giant anteater (Myrmecophaga tridactyla), and giant armadillo (Priodontes maximus). Scat detection probabilities by dog teams varied by species and survey grid size, but were consistent across study variables. The probability of occurrence of the target species in a randomly selected site within the study area ranged from 0.14 for jaguar, which occur primarily in forested areas of the Park, to 0.91 for maned wolf, the most widely distributed species. Giant armadillo, jaguar, and maned wolf were significantly more likely to be present in grids located inside than outside the Park. The effort required for detection was highest for the two felids. The methods described here should be useful for conducting presence-absence surveys of wide-ranging species in and around nature reserves as well as for large-scale, multi-species monitoring programs.
   Habitat preferences of wide-ranging mammals in the Brazilian Cerrado Vynne, C*, University of Washington ; Keim, J, Matrix Solutions; Jacomo, ATA, Jaguar Conservation Fund; Machado, RB, University of Brasilia; Marinho-Filho, J, University of Brasilia; Ramos Neto, MB, World Wildlife Fund; Silveira, L, Jaguar Conservation Fund; Wasser, S, University of Washington
Conserving animals beyond reserves is critical since even the largest protected areas may be too small to maintain viable populations for many wide-ranging species. Identification of sites that will promote population persistence is a high priority, in particular, for protected areas that reside in regions of otherwise extensive habitat loss. This is the case for Emas National Park, a small but important protected area located in the Brazilian Cerrado. In order to determine the relative importance of habitats found within the Park as well as to identify key sites outside reserve borders, we surveyed for six large mammals of conservation concern: maned wolf (Chrysocyon brachyurus), puma (Puma concolor), jaguar (Panthera onca), giant anteater (Myrmecophaga tridactyla), giant armadillo (Priodontes maximus), and lowland tapir (Tapirus terrestris). We used the more than 2,000 samples located by our scat detection dog teams to fit Resource Selection Probability Models to these data, showing how each species preferentially selects sites relative to those available. Natural grasslands, which are extremely rare outside the Park, were strongly preferred by the giant armadillos and giant anteaters, and agricultural lands were avoided by giant armadillos but selected by maned wolves. Whereas pumas were ubiquitous in their use of habitats, jaguars were almost entirely restricted to forested valleys within the Park. These analyses illustrate the landscape features that must be maintained if we are to promote persistence of these populations.
   Contributions of a global conservation funding mechanism to achieving the Convention on Biological Diversity 2010 target William Crosse*, Conservation International ; Hari Balasubramanian, Conservation International; Matt Foster, Conservation International; Penny Langhammer, Consultant/PhD student; Nina Marshall, Critical Ecosystem Partnership Fund; Will Turner, Conservation International
2010 marks the year that the Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) set to achieve the Target for ‘a significant reduction in the rate of biodiversity loss.’ This agreement has served as one of the most powerful conservation policy mechanisms implemented to date. It has not only helped stimulate important action to safeguard biodiversity, but has served as a catalyst for designing appropriate measures that communicate progress and contributions towards accomplishing this target. The 10th COP of the CBD presents a major opportunity for governments, the private sector and civil society to take stock of where, how, and how well we have made advances in safeguarding species and vital ecosystems and maintaining the benefits they provide to societies. We assess the contributions of the Critical Ecosystem Partnership Fund (CEPF), a 10 year investment spanning 17 biodiversity hotspots focused on enabling civil society participation in biodiversity conservation, by examining a selection of indicators recommended under the CBD 2010 framework. We also look forward and evaluate contributions that may be incorporated into a post-2010 framework. Within key biodiversity areas we evaluate change in habitat extent (pressure), change in threatened status of species (state), change in protection status (response), and change in ecosystem services in terms of tons of carbon stored and sequestered, emissions avoided, and hydrological services maintained (benefits) to demonstrate how such a global conservation funding program has contributed to the 2010 Target.
   Evolutionary divergence of Australian Nautilus pompilius (Mollusca, Cephalopoda) populations Williams, RC*, University of Cumbria ; Sinclair, B, University of Cumbria; Newman, SJ, Western Australian Fisheries
Nautilus species are the only remaining cephalopods with an external shell. Across their distribution they are heavily targeted by the shell trade and in many areas populations are in serious decline. Current populations are becoming increasingly isolated and consequently more vulnerable to a range of threats. This study follows previous work which demonstrated genetic divergence between Nautilus pompilius populations in the Northern Great Barrier Reef and those in the Coral Sea. Here we look at the degree of genetic divergence between these east Australian populations of Nautilus pompilius and those from western Australia. DNA extraction, fragment amplification and DNA sequence analysis were undertaken to compile a data set that described the DNA sequence data from these extant populations. This has been undertaken on 136 externally sourced samples to compile a data set that describes the DNA sequence data from these extant populations. Phylogenetic trees will be developed from these data to elucidate evolutionary relationships. Results will be discussed in relation to population isolation and connectivity, species diversification and how evolutionary separation matches geographic stratification.
   Assessing the spatial generality of a local ecologcial consequence of climate change: scaling up the risk of caribou-vegetation trophic mismatch in the Arctic Wisz, MS, National Environmental Resarch Inst, Univ Aarhus, Denmark ; Forchammer, MC, National Environmental Resarch Inst, Univ Aarhus, Denmark; Guisan, A., Univ. Lausanne; Høye, TT, National Environmental Resarch Inst, Univ Aarhus, Denmark; Maiorano, L.*, Univ Lausanne; Pellissier, L., Univ Lausanne; Nabe-Nielsen, Jacob, National Environmental Resarch Inst, Univ Aarhus, Denmark; nms@dmu.dk, National Environmental Resarch Inst, Univ Aarhus
There is a growing need to predict the future composition of ecological communities in the face of global change. We address this need by coupling the strengths of both species distribution modelling and insights derived from local scale population monitoring in the Arctic, to introduce a mechanistic explanation of spatio-temporal patterns across spatial scales. We illustrate this with an example that explores trophic mismatch between the timing of vegetation emergence and caribou calving in Greenland. Caribou migrations to calving areas do not always coincide with the emergence of highly nutritious forage resources in space and time, and this has been linked to reduced calf survivorship at the local scale. To examine broader scale spatial patterns of this, we bring together data on vegetation emergence in space and time (from daily estimates of NDVI) with satellite telemetry data from pregnant caribou, to map the probability of trophic mismatch between emerging vegetation and caribou calving in the landscape, with the aim to identify potentially vulnerable locations and possible refugia that will be of relevance to caribou management.
   Who govern the leadership position and dominate decision-making in Community Forestry User Groups in Nepal? Yadav,B.D.*, LIncoln University, New Zealand ; Bigsby, H., LIncoln University, New Zealand; MacDonaland,I., LIncoln University, New Zealand
Who govern the leadership position and dominate decision-making in Community Forestry User Groups in Nepal? Bhagwan Dutta Yadav Hugh Bigsby Ian MacDonald Abstract Nepal has established community forestry (CF) institutions to manage natural resources at the local community level under the assumption that there will be better management than under Government agencies. However, CF has not been entirely successful as it has not addressed the needs of poor and marginalised groups. The main goal of this study is to examine how Nepalese social structure guides the structure of the Executive Committee (EC) of Community Forestry User Groups (CFUGs) and in particular, whether the EC is dominated by elite groups that could in turn hinder the needs of poor and disadvantaged groups. This paper uses data from the middle hill district of Baglung, Nepal. Statistical analysis indicates that decision-making is dominated by the local elite, who are typically from higher castes, have larger land holdings, livestock unit, food sufficiency, leadership experience and have a higher off farm income. The empirical results are expected to suggest policy makers design program for empowering people of low caste, poor and lower socio-economic status to create opportunity to be involved in decision-making in order to have equal or need based benefits acquired by CF. Keywords: Social structure, leadership, caste, community forestry, decision-making
   Measuring Amenity Benefits from Urban Open Space: A Hedonic Approach Yoo, Sanglim*, State University of New York, College of Environmental Science and Forestry
This study will evaluate how urban residents value the spatial patterns of open space in their neighborhood. Amenity values of open space will be measured in a hedonic method. This study will consider how the value of open space amenities in urban area vary not only with traditional hedonic variables explaining structure and neighborhood characteristics of properties but also with spatial variables including accessibility to open space, size of the open space, percent of surrounding each open space land use type and landscape ecological index which represent neighboring land use pattern. By investigating these effects, this study will explore; 1) whether the accessibility to the open space affects the residential property values, 2) whether the size of open space affect the residential property value, 3) whether different surrounding land use patterns generate different amenities to residential property, and 4) before and after the event of land use change, whether the property value affected by that change. This study will be conducted based on the house transactions in Onondaga County, NY from January 2000 to December 2000. Results of this study will be useful in the conservation and the planning of urban open space, so it could perform its functions with minimum economic cost and conflicts.
   The Impact of Nature Experience on Willingness to Support Conservation Zaradic, PA*, Red Rock Institute ; Pergams, OR, University of Illinois, Chicago; Kareiva, P, The Nature Conservancy
We hypothesized that willingness to financially support conservation depends on one’s experience with nature. In order to test this hypothesis, we used a novel time-lagged correlation analysis to look at times series data concerning nature participation, and evaluate its relationship with future conservation support (measured as contributions to conservation NGOs). Our results suggest that the type and timing of nature experience may determine future conservation investment. Time spent hiking or backpacking is correlated with increased conservation contributions 11-12 years later. On the other hand, contributions are negatively correlated with past time spent on activities such as public lands visitation or fishing. Our results suggest that each hiker or backpacker translates to $200-$300 annually in future NGO contributions. We project that the recent decline in popularity of hiking and backpacking will negatively impact conservation NGO contributions from approximately 2010-2011 through at least 2018.
   Conservation Genetics of Chamois (Rupicapra rupicapra) Populations in Slovakia, Central Europe Zemanová, B*, Institute of Vertebrate Biology, Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic ; Hájková, P, Institute of Vertebrate Biology, Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic; Bryja, J, Institute of Vertebrate Biology, Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic; Mikulíček, P, Institute of Vertebrate Biology, Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic; Martínková, N , Institute of Vertebrate Biology, Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic; Zima, J, jr., Institute of Vertebrate Biology, Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic; Hájková, A, Institute of Vertebrate Biology, Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic; Zima, J, Institute of Vertebrate Biology, Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic
The only autochthonous population of Tatra chamois (Rupicapra rupicapra tatrica), an endemic mountain ungulate, occurs in Tatra Mountains (Central Europe, N Slovakia and S Poland). Another population of this highly endangered subspecies was introduced into nearby Low Tatra Mts. The Tatra Mts. population went through several bottlenecks; the Low Tatra Mts. population might be endangered by founder effect and the hybridisation with allochthonous Alpine chamois (R. r. rupicapra), that were introduced into neighbouring mountain ranges. We used various genetic markers (microsatellites, MHC II DRB, D-loop) to study effect of low population size on genetic variability and structure of all chamois populations in Slovakia. Analyses were based on both, tissue samples and noninvasive material (faeces, shed hairs). Low genetic variability was found in all studied populations. The lowest variability was detected in Tatra Mts., despite the other – introduced – populations being founded by only a few individuals. In addition, DRB gene variability was extremely low in the Tatra Mts. population, where only a single allele was present. High values of fixation index, factorial correspondence analysis and Bayesian clustering revealed strong differentiation between three groups of populations: (1) Tatra Mts. + Low Tatra Mts., (2) Veľká Fatra Mts., and (3) Slovenský raj Mts. In addition, the analysis indicated that hybridisation between the Tatra and Alpine chamois occurred in Low Tatra Mts.
   Survey and Spatial Analysis of Human-Jaguar Conflicts across Latin America Zimmermann, Alexandra*, Oxford University and Chester Zoo ; Wilson, Scott, Chester Zoo
The jaguar (Panthera onca) occurs in 19 range states across Latin America, from southern Arizona to northern Argentina. Few pristine areas remain in which jaguars survive protected from the influences and threats presented by human populations. 65% of the remaining 11 million km2 jaguar range is outside protected areas, and it is here that they come into contact with livestock, on which they occasionally prey and which leads to retaliatory killing by farmers. Direct persecution of jaguars (and hunting of their prey) is considered to be the most serious and widespread threat to their survival. We conducted an expert-based of human-jaguar conflicts, involving more than 80 jaguar experts from all 19 range states. We combined the survey results with available GIS datasets of geographical variables such as protected areas, livestock densities, human geography and jaguar distribution, in order to examine the spatial relationships of variables relevant to jaguar-human conflicts. 89% of the conflicts reported by the sample of experts surveyed occurred within 50km of a protected area. 95% of the jaguar range is in areas of a low Human Footprint Index and 99% of jaguar range is in areas of low cattle densities. However, 85% of the jaguar range has some overlap with livestock and therefore some potential for conflict with people. We propose a simple predictive model for predicting high risk areas, or ‘hotspots’ of jaguar conflicts based on these variables.
   On the benefits and challenges of teaching a unique social science & conservation survey course Zint, Michaela*, University of Michigan
This presentation will focus on describing an innovative undergraduate course designed to introduce future conservation professionals to the social sciences and what they offer for improving conservation strategies. The course is unique in that unlike most social science courses offered by conservation departments it does not focus on a single social science. Instead, the course describes what researchers in anthropology, economics, education/communication, political science, psychology, and sociology have to offer that is similar and different. Students also apply what they learn by improving local conservation strategies. Based on five years of teaching the course including results from evaluations assessing student learning (n=300), the presenter will share insights into the course’s benefits and challenges. Benefits include students with an improved understanding of what the different social sciences have to offer conservation and a greater appreciation for the strengths and limitations of science. Challenges include overcoming students’ misperceptions of social science methods being inferior to that of natural science methods and identifying the most promising social science research results for informing conservation strategies. The presentation’s goal is to inspire and support others interested in teaching a similar social science and conservation survey course to undergraduate and graduate students at other institutions.
.115   Quadrivia Analysis of the Endangered Queen Alexandra’s Birdwing Butterfly (O. alexandrae): Incorporating Integral Ecology into Conservation Practice Hicks, TL*, Washington State University - Vancouver
I use an Integral Ecological approach to perform a quadrivia analysis, using Ken’s Wilber’s AQAL model, of two disjunct populations of the endangered Queen Alexandra’s Birding Butterfly (QABB), in Papua New Guinea, to explore the complex interrelated perspectives involved in conserving the species across its range. Conservation of international endangered species offers a unique set of challenges to conservation biologists. The success of conservation efforts is dictated not only by ecological and environmental variables, but by a variety of individual, social, economic, cultural, and political influences. Historically, conservation ecologists have placed greater emphasis on the science of endangered species recovery. In Papua New Guinea, this, in some cases, has led to unintended consequences of conservation actions, conflict between conservation biologists and indigenous peoples, and ultimately failure to achieve conservation goals. Using an integral framework I found traditional land owner’s motivations in conserving the QABB and approaches by NGOs and government conservation entities contrasted sharply between each other and the two butterfly populations. My results suggest that conservation efforts in culturally and socially diverse environments require a more holistic approach to conservation that it is especially inclusive of local perspectives. Specific conservation guidelines and action steps informed by an integral approach are provided for each population.
.178   Population viability analysis of Hydromedusa maximiliani (Testudines, Chelidae) from the Brazilian Atlantic Rain Forest Famelli, S.*, Departamento de Ciências Biológicas, Escola Superior de Agricultura Luiz de Queiroz, Universidade de São Paulo, Brazil ; Souza, F. L., Departamento de Biologia, Centro de Ciências Biológicas e da Saúde, Universidade Federal de Mato Grosso do Sul, Brazil; Chiaravalloti, R. M., Departamento de Biologia, Centro de Ciências Biológicas e da Saúde, Universidade Federal de Mato Grosso do Sul, Brazil; Bertoluci, J., Departamento de Ciências Biológicas, Escola Superior de Agricultura Luiz de Queiroz, Universidade de São Paulo, Brazil
The chelid turtle Hydromedusa maximiliani is endemic to the Brazilian Atlantic Rain Forest and is considered Vulnerable by IUCN. Aiming to test the viability of a population living in a southeastern Brazil conservation unity (the Parque Estadual Carlos Botelho, state of São Paulo), we conducted simulations of population viability analysis using the software VORTEX (version 9.93). We have created a principal scenario (Real Population) based on species life-history data collected throughout 10 years. We then modified this scenario by altering some variables (increase mortality rate by 10%, increase of inbreeding depression by 10%, decrease of carrying capacity), which configured an alternative scenario named Hypotetical Isolated Population. These two scenarios were compared by sensitivity tests to verify the influence of these variables on mortality rate, disasters, and inbreeding depression. There was a significant difference between the two scenarios. Probability of population extinction was 31% to the Real Population (protected inside a conservation unit) and 90% to the Hypotetical Isolated Population (non-protected) after a 100 years period. Our results suggest that the tested variables strongly influence population survivorship and emphasize the importance of protected areas as mechanism for species conservation.
.3   08:08  Bridging the Gap: Critical Landscape Connectivity in South India Jones, Suresh*, LORIS-The Biodiversity Conservation Society
The broken hill ranges of the semi arid lower Eastern Ghats in Chittoor district of Andhra Pradesh, India comprise of patches of dry deciduous forests and thorny scrub. Older than its western counterpart, the Eastern Ghats are an important biogeographic region much valued for their floral diversity. These ranges have landscape connectivity with the Western Ghats, a Biodiversity Hotspot. Conservation of this connectivity is critical for the re-colonization of the remnant isolated wildlife populations of many species of global conservation significance. Situated between two Protected Areas within the district, this lesser-known and heavily fragmented area is also part of an elephant corridor. The protection of the connectivity between these isolated habitats is extremely important to overcome the barriers for the distribution of various other species, to ensure their genetic interchange and facilitate seasonal movement. For the local village communities whose economy is supported by agriculture and animal husbandry, these ‘Reserve Forests’ are a major resource for subsistence. These forests were traditionally conserved as ‘Sacred Groves’ and are island gene pools of many threatened species. Involving the communities in the protection of habitat corridors and stepping stones could be an important part of an overall regional landscape conservation framework.
   08:30  Evaluating the effectiveness of a law enforcement strategy in protecting tropical mammals Linkie, M*, FFI ; Maryati, FFI; Martyr, D, FFI; Nugraha, R, PHKA; Guillera-Arroita, G, University of Kent; Lahoz Monfort, J, University of Kent
Conservationists need to evaluate the success of their efforts, in order to develop cost-effective strategies. However, few programs measure project performance adequately, as most carry out no assessment at all or rely on descriptive analyses that cannot distinguish between the confounding effects of different covariates. This is particularly relevant to law enforcement strategies aimed at protecting tigers, which over the past decade have received millions of dollars of funding. Here we conduct the first such study by analysing, post hoc, law enforcement patrol data collected from 2000 to 2009 within a robust statistical framework to assess the performance of a tiger protection strategy from Kerinci Seblat National Park, Sumatra. More specifically, we quantitatively determine the trends of tigers, their prey and their threats both temporally and spatially and then assess the relationship between these trends and law enforcement effort, while controlling for a series of environmental covariates. We illustrate the importance of our major findings in informing managers and policy makers on protected area management and in informing donors on the return from their investment.
.3   08:30  Herbivore abundance and global warming: the impact of food and predator regulation across rainfall gradients in African savanna ecosystems. Hopcraft, J. Grant C.*, University of Groningen ; Anderson, T.M., Wake Forest University; Olff, Han, University of Groningen
Shifts in global climate could result in a mismatch between the location of protected areas and a species’ preferred niche. Therefore understanding the factors that regulate herbivores is critical to the long-term management and conservation of ecosystems. In sub-sahara Africa, the primary response to global climate change is precipitation. High annual rainfall tends to increase the abundance of grass but decrease its nutritional quality, while simultaneously increasing the vegetative cover that conceals predators. We ask how grazers of different body sizes distribute themselves with respect to food abundance, food quality and predation risk. The results from long-term aerial wildlife counts from the Serengeti illustrate that the distribution of small savanna grazers (Thomson’s and Grant’s gazelle) is constrained by food quality and predation. Large grazers (topi, Coke’s hartebeest and African buffalo) are constrained by the abundance of food and not its quality or associated predation risks. Therefore, if global warming leads to less rainfall, the results suggest smaller savanna grazers will be favored over larger grazers (and visa versa). We conclude that regulation of different sized herbivores by food or predation might switch if global warming leads to changes in the rainfall patterns across Africa, particularly if animals are unable to move beyond protected area boundaries.
.12   08:44  Impacts of climate change on mangrove ecosystems: A global perspective Luther,DA*, Smithsonian ; Selig, E, Conservation International; Hole, D, Conservation International
Mangrove forests, which are widely distributed in the intertidal zone of the tropics and subtropics around the world, are currently suffering the highest rate of deforestation of any ecosystem. Previous studies indicate that nearly half of the terrestrial vertebrate species endemic to mangroves and 20% of mangrove flora are threatened with extinction. While historically habitat conversion to aquaculture and urbanization have been the greatest threats to mangroves, climate change is predicted to have a large impact, both positive and negative, on the distribution of mangroves. Increased global temperatures are allowing mangroves to move to higher latitudes, but sea-level rise has emerged as a serious threat to the future existence of mangroves. Using global mangrove data, our analysis identified sites where mangroves will be able to migrate inland as tides rise and sites where mangroves could be extirpated due to anthropogenic barriers, such as roads, houses, and dikes, that will prevent their inland migration. Our results indicate that many mangroves sites will be unable to move inland as a result of anthropogenic barriers. As an example, over 20% of mangrove sites have adjacent anthropogenic barriers that could prevent their inland migration. In our presentation, we outline our results and suggest conservation recommendations that should aid both local and global conservation planning decisions for mangrove forests.
.1   10:30  Site-fidelity in a declining population of migratory wildebeest Morrison, TA*, Dartmouth College ; Bolger, DT, Dartmouth College
Migration is a complex behavior governed by a number of traits with genetic, social and environmental sensitivities. The degree to which the individuals use the same seasonal areas in subsequent years (i.e. seasonal site fidelity) has not been characterized in most populations due to the difficulty of following large numbers of animals over long distances and across seasons. However, site fidelity can shape a population’s demographic response to landscape change and determine its genetic structure across space. We examined site-fidelity patterns in a declining population of migratory wildebeest (Connochaetes taurinus) in northern Tanzania at two spatial scales. We used computer-assisted photographic identification to identify 4800 adult wildebeest across three breeding seasons. Based on over 500 recaptured individuals, we found strong site-fidelity to seasonal breeding habitat in wildebeest, with males returning more frequently to breeding sites than females.
.8   10:58  Grassroots Institutions for Nature Conservation: Identifying the Rights and Roles for Diverse Stakeholders KITAMURA, KENJI*, National Institute for Environmental Studies
This research explores how grassroots institutions can contribute more effectively to conservation policy. Notably, since the scenario of the tragedy of the commons presented by Hardin (1968), common property has been a topic of heated debate and developed into a new field of research. Knowledge in this field, however, has not yet been integrated fully with broader conservation policy. Protected areas and property rights have a particularly close relationship to which the knowledge on common property could greatly contribute. Bundles of rights (Schlager and Ostrom 1992), for example, are a useful framework for analyzing regimes with specific resources subject to extractive uses. Regimes with broader objectives like the protection of ecosystem services, however, require a different framework for analysis. Parks and nature reserves have uses and rules different from those in the traditional commons. I conducted case studies of grassroots forest reserves in Costa Rica in order to examine the practice on the ground. By using participant observation, semi-structured interviews and document review, the research identified varying bundles of property rights held and roles played by diverse stakeholders. It found that, as long as several key preconditions and promoting factors are present, grassroots regimes for conservation can be effective in balancing the dual goals of nature conservation and the well-being of local people.
.9   11:02  Turbidity affects behaviour of the Endangered Pugnose Shiner, Notropis anogenus Gray, SM*, Department of Biology, McGill University ; Chapman, LJ, Department of Biology, McGill University; Mandrak, NE, Centre of Expertise for Aquatic Risk Assessment, Fisheries and Oceans Canada
Increasing turbidity in aquatic ecosystems worldwide, due to deforestation and near-shore development, is a key environmental stressor for freshwater fishes. The persistence of the Endangered Pugnose Shiner, Notropis anogenus, in Canada is potentially threatened by this stressor, yet we know little about how increases in turbidity influence their behaviour, physiology, and ultimately their fitness. We tested for sub-lethal impacts of turbidity on the behaviour of adult Pugnose Shiner using a 2-month acclimation experiment. We used 5-min tank observations and scored the movement of all fish in the tank (10 fish) every 15 s (i.e. by recording the number of fish found in each of four quadrants every 10 s). Results provide evidence to suggest that behavioural interactions break down among fish held under low turbidity (~10 NTU) compared with those held in clear water (0-1 NTU). We found greater variance in schooling behaviour among fish in the turbid treatment, and a significant decline in activity level. Further investigation of gill morphology will determine if sensitive gill structures were damaged, thus contributing to a loss of condition and reduced activity. These results were obtained using very low levels of turbidity, suggesting that even minor environmental disturbance may be detrimental. This study will contribute to the recovery strategy for Pugnose Shiner and other threatened freshwater fishes.
.5   14:16  Changes in distribution and habitat of fishes resulting from water recession in terminating lakes of a drought-stricken river Wedderburn, SD*, The University of Adelaide
Over-abstraction of water often places unsustainable pressures on river ecosystems, and damage can be irreversible (e.g. species loss). The impacts are amplified during dry periods and especially under drought. Freshwater fishes are vulnerable to the effects of reduced freshwater flows due to associated changes in water quality, physical habitat and connectivity. The Murray-Darling Basin in south-eastern Australia feeds two large terminating lakes (Lake Alexandrina and Lake Albert) that are separated from the River Murray estuary by five tidal barrages. The lakes hold the highest diversity of fishes than any region of the Basin, which is partly due to the co-occurrence of estuarine, diadromous and obligate freshwater species. Over-abstraction during the previous several decades, coupled with extreme drought during the last decade, has placed the system under severe stress. This study compares habitat and fish assemblages from sampling preceding, and five years into, dramatic reductions in water levels in the lakes. Most lake-fringing areas held a diverse assemblage in 2003 but the majority of habitats were dry by 2008. Consequently, we found a dramatic decline in several threatened freshwater fish species, and the likely extirpation of another. Connectivity between habitats was severed, and there was a shift in the types of suitable habitat (simplification) for the remaining isolates of freshwater fishes. The data also show an emerging dominance of estuarine fishes. This study provides a timely reminder of the potential ecological impacts of over-allocating water for human use coupled with changes in climate.
.8   14:28  Coral Reef Fish and the Aquarium Trade: Ecological Impacts and Socio-cultural Influences in Sri Lanka Howard, JA*, Department of Anthropology & School of Biological & Biomedical Sciences, University of Durham ; Bell, S, Department of Anthropology, University of Durham; Lucas, MC, School of Biological & Biomedical Sciences, University of Durham; Kumara, TP, The Faculty of Fisheries and Marine Sciences & Technology, University of Ruhuna, Sri Lanka
The relationships between coral reef degradation and the livelihoods activities of reef dependent communities such as those of ornamental fishermen of southern Sri Lanka are poor, especially given the tendency for research data to focus exclusively on biodiversity conservation. Lack of knowledge concerning this complex relationship contributes to both the deterioration of coral reef productivity and the benefits that reef dependent communities can accrue from coastal livelihood activities in general and from the ornamental fish trade in particular. Marine conservation is nowadays recognised as an interdisciplinary activity where the preservation of marine biota cannot be separated from human development and welfare. Using a collaborative, participatory approach to gather both ecological, economic and socio-cultural data, it was found that while fishing for the ornamental fish trade is a substantial threat to coral reef ecosystem sustainability, it also contributes markedly to local village household incomes and the development of economically viable fishing skills. Ongoing work is exploring with local coastal groups, alternative income generating opportunities that can replace or greatly reduce the destructive reef fishing methods used for the aquarium trade as well as incorporating the findings into a community based management plan for this fishery.
   14:45  Does Alberta have Landscape Amnesia? The loss of Montane grasslands Didkowsky, M., Alberta Conservation Association ; Jones, P., Alberta Conservation Association
Change in landscape characteristics can occur over long time frames without notice. While fire was an essential stimuli in the development of the grassland community, its exclusion appears to be subtly changing grassland systems in SW Alberta. Previous research on fire dependant ecosystems has focused on tree ring scars and fire regimes, but these are not applicable to historical grasslands. Although encroachment of shrubs and trees into grasslands has occurred since the 1800s, a quantified measure of large extents of the southern Alberta Montane Subregion is lacking. Imagery from 1949 and 2006 were classified into 12 groundcover categories to assess whether a loss in grassland has occurred. Change in the proportions of classes was evident in each of our three study areas, including an approximate 10% loss in grass cover. Fragmentation also occurred, with grassland polygons decreasing by up to half of their original size. These changes occurred over more than half a century, but we suspect if this loss in grass forage occurred over one year the cattle industry would take more notice. Unfortunately, the direct loss of forage for cattle production is only part of the issue. If grass forage used by wild ungulates is decreasing on public land, then added competition for forage will occur with cattle. This will inevitably heighten human conflict with large predators (wolves or grizzly bears) as they follow the prey resource. Policy initiatives in this system need to recognize that this landscape is changing, and therefore shifting the balance among cattle producers, forestry, wildlife, gas producers, and recreational users.
   15:15  Dark Sky Preserves: IUCN and UNESCO Initiatives Welch, D.M.*, Dark Skies Advisory Group, IUCN ; Marin, C., UNESCO Centre of the Canary Islands
Dark sky reserves have been established in several countries, mostly since 1999 after the establishment of the Torrance Barrens Dark Sky Reserve, Canada, as a destination for amateur stargazing. In the past decade, conservation organizations have shown increased interest in the effects of light pollution on ecosystems. We review the international efforts to promote dark-sky protected areas and their relation to conservation biology. Notably, in 2007 the Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias (IAS, Spain) teamed with the UNESCO Centre of the Canary Islands to lead an international working group to propose starlight reserves as protected areas in their own right, and to promote the value of unpolluted night skies at world heritage sites. The IAS, the International Astronomical Union and the World Heritage Centre have cooperated to bring a declaration to UNESCO in support of the right all people to view and enjoy an unpolluted night sky and affirming control of obtrusive light as a “basic element of nature conservation policies.” In 2009 the IUCN established its Dark Skies Advisory Group to advise protected areas world-wide on dark sky matters, especially in relation to the role of IUCN as the advisory body to UNESCO on environmental issues. This presentation will invite discussion on how conservation biologists can partner with protected area custodians to preserve the ecology of the night.