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The Effect of Blue-Green Infrastructure on Habitat Connectivity and Biodiversity: A Case Study in the Ōtākaro/Avon River Catchment in Christchurch, New Zealand

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Department of Civil and Natural Resources Engineering, University of Canterbury, Christchurch 8041, New Zealand
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Manaaki Whenua—Landcare Research, Lincoln 7640, New Zealand
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School of Earth and Environment, University of Canterbury, Christchurch 8041, New Zealand
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BEEA Limited, Wellington 6012, New Zealand
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School of Geography, Environment and Earth Sciences, Victoria University of Wellington, Wellington 6012, New Zealand
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Ivo Machar
Sustainability 2021, 13(12), 6732; https://doi.org/10.3390/su13126732
Received: 27 April 2021 / Revised: 10 June 2021 / Accepted: 11 June 2021 / Published: 14 June 2021
(This article belongs to the Section Sustainable Engineering and Science)
The natural capital components in cities (“blue-green infrastructure” BGI) are designed to address long-term sustainability and create multi-benefits for society, culture, business, and ecology. We investigated the added value of BGI through the research question “Can the implementation of blue-green infrastructure lead to an improvement of habitat connectivity and biodiversity in urban environments?” To answer this, the Biological and Environmental Evaluation Tools for Landscape Ecology (BEETLE) within the Land Utilisation and Capability Indicator (LUCI) framework was adopted and applied in Christchurch, New Zealand, for the first time. Three ecologically representative species were selected. The parameterisation was based on ecological theory and expert judgment. By implementation of BGI, the percentages of habitats of interest for kereru and paradise shelduck increased by 3.3% and 2.5%, respectively. This leads to improved habitat connectivity. We suggest several opportunities for regenerating more native patches around the catchment to achieve the recommended minimum 10% target of indigenous cover. However, BGI alone cannot return a full suite of threatened wildlife to the city without predator-fenced breeding sanctuaries and wider pest control across the matrix. The socio-eco-spatial connectivity analysed in this study was formalised in terms of four interacting dimensions. View Full-Text
Keywords: habitat connectivity; biodiversity; focal species; blue-green infrastructure; ecosystem services; LUCI habitat connectivity; biodiversity; focal species; blue-green infrastructure; ecosystem services; LUCI
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MDPI and ACS Style

Nguyen, T.T.; Meurk, C.; Benavidez, R.; Jackson, B.; Pahlow, M. The Effect of Blue-Green Infrastructure on Habitat Connectivity and Biodiversity: A Case Study in the Ōtākaro/Avon River Catchment in Christchurch, New Zealand. Sustainability 2021, 13, 6732. https://doi.org/10.3390/su13126732

AMA Style

Nguyen TT, Meurk C, Benavidez R, Jackson B, Pahlow M. The Effect of Blue-Green Infrastructure on Habitat Connectivity and Biodiversity: A Case Study in the Ōtākaro/Avon River Catchment in Christchurch, New Zealand. Sustainability. 2021; 13(12):6732. https://doi.org/10.3390/su13126732

Chicago/Turabian Style

Nguyen, Thuy T., Colin Meurk, Rubianca Benavidez, Bethanna Jackson, and Markus Pahlow. 2021. "The Effect of Blue-Green Infrastructure on Habitat Connectivity and Biodiversity: A Case Study in the Ōtākaro/Avon River Catchment in Christchurch, New Zealand" Sustainability 13, no. 12: 6732. https://doi.org/10.3390/su13126732

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