Assessments, Planning and Action for Conservation of Species and Ecosystems at Multiple Spatial Scales

A special issue of Diversity (ISSN 1424-2818). This special issue belongs to the section "Biodiversity Conservation".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 December 2022) | Viewed by 59577

Special Issue Editor

Instituto Venezolano de Investigaciones Cientificas, Caracas, Venezuela
Interests: focuses on understanding patterns in the spatial distribution of threatened species and ecosystems, as well as the underlying causes of these patterns, and the development of policy guidelines for biodiversity conservation

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

This Special Issue is inspired by the Species Conservation Cycle, championed by the network of +10,500 experts of the IUCN Species Survival Commission, in their pursuit of delivering the portfolio of Knowledge Standards convened by IUCN. Joining forces with the other five Commissions (CEC, CEESP, CEM, WCEL, WCPA), these expert networks deliver much of the science that underlies biodiversity policy worldwide. We invite anyone investigating the status of species and ecosystems at any spatial scale to consider submitting an article for this Special Issue. Particularly welcome are analyses that help identify priorities and gaps, and those that address geographical regions of the world where biodiversity levels are high but where human, financial and institutional resources are weaker. Species- or ecosystem-specific articles that illustrate the progression from assessment to planning to action are also welcomed, as well as analyses that develop a particular stage of the Species Conservation Cycle for a group of organisms or ecosystems. We highly encourage a diversity of authorship, balancing the geography, age, gender and expertise of participants. Achieving taxonomic diversity in the collection of articles—animals, fungi and plants—and geographical diversity in the locations of analyses are also primary goals.

Dr. Jon Paul Rodríguez
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

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Keywords

  • extinction risk
  • geographic distribution
  • IUCN
  • risk of collapse
  • species conservation cycle
  • threatened species
  • threatened ecosystems

Published Papers (18 papers)

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Editorial

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4 pages, 217 KiB  
Editorial
We Know How to Do Conservation—We Just Need to Do More of It!
Diversity 2023, 15(3), 443; https://doi.org/10.3390/d15030443 - 17 Mar 2023
Viewed by 1124
Abstract
For decades, even centuries, people have taken deliberate, targeted actions for the conservation and management of species and ecosystems [...] Full article

Research

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14 pages, 4879 KiB  
Article
Shared Landscapes: Optimising Conservation Strategies Using Tiger and Elephant Sympatry in India
Diversity 2022, 14(12), 1055; https://doi.org/10.3390/d14121055 - 01 Dec 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1963
Abstract
Asian elephants (Elephas maximus) and tigers (Panthera tigris) share the same landscape in India. Elephants, which range over 239,171 km2, occupy 45.5% of the 433,261 km2 habitat that tigers inhabit. Equally, at least 40% of elephant [...] Read more.
Asian elephants (Elephas maximus) and tigers (Panthera tigris) share the same landscape in India. Elephants, which range over 239,171 km2, occupy 45.5% of the 433,261 km2 habitat that tigers inhabit. Equally, at least 40% of elephant corridors are used by tigers. A shared landscape offers opportunities for careful, integrated management strategies with shared resources. The species are protected differently in India, with tiger reserves being legal entities dedicated to the protection of tigers and their habitats, and Elephant Reserves being management units with no legal standing. With additional disparities in financial supports to tiger reserves—which receive 10 times more money than elephant reserves—it is obvious that the elephant reserves are being treated inequitably. Since the two species coexist in the same landscapes, efforts to protect tigers can help to make up for elephant conservation gaps and optimise the use of conservation resources by tweaking a few management and policy practices. In addition, the overlay of tigers using elephant corridors can efficiently secure habitat linkages for both species. Full article
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28 pages, 5415 KiB  
Article
Freshwater Fishes of Central America: Distribution, Assessment, and Major Threats
Diversity 2022, 14(10), 793; https://doi.org/10.3390/d14100793 - 24 Sep 2022
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 4174
Abstract
Central America contains a rich diversity of freshwater habitats that support more than 600 species of freshwater fishes. However, despite several perceived threats to the integrity of the freshwater habitats throughout the region, a formal analysis of extinction risk for the region’s ichthyofauna [...] Read more.
Central America contains a rich diversity of freshwater habitats that support more than 600 species of freshwater fishes. However, despite several perceived threats to the integrity of the freshwater habitats throughout the region, a formal analysis of extinction risk for the region’s ichthyofauna is lacking. In this manuscript, we report an updated checklist of species and a novel comprehensive assessment of the conservation status of Central American freshwater fishes by applying the IUCN Red List Categories and Criteria to species at the global level. We also analyze the distribution of freshwater fishes across Central America and generate baseline geospatial data that can be used in multi-species conservation planning processes, which is available through the Red List Website. Our results indicate that between 15 and 28% of freshwater fishes in the region are threatened with extinction, with considerable uncertainty resulting from elevated data deficiency. We identify major and widespread threats in the region, including pollution, agriculture, aquaculture, biological resource use, natural system modifications, invasive species, and land development. This analysis represents an important first step in formulating effective conservation planning and action initiatives for a taxonomic group that historically has received few protections and can be used to inform conservation priorities of freshwater ecosystems at both national and regional scales. Full article
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12 pages, 2743 KiB  
Article
Cheer Pheasant (Catreus wallichii) and the Conservation Paradox: Importance of Unprotected Areas
Diversity 2022, 14(10), 785; https://doi.org/10.3390/d14100785 - 21 Sep 2022
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 2042
Abstract
Cheer pheasant is a globally vulnerable species mainly found in the mid-montane grassland of the western Himalayas. Such grasslands are spread sporadically, and the distribution of this species too, as a result, has remained patchy. Using Maxent, we investigated the distribution of cheer [...] Read more.
Cheer pheasant is a globally vulnerable species mainly found in the mid-montane grassland of the western Himalayas. Such grasslands are spread sporadically, and the distribution of this species too, as a result, has remained patchy. Using Maxent, we investigated the distribution of cheer across its global range (Pakistan, India, and Nepal) to determine a potential distribution range. The model predicted that higher altitude (increasing probability peaking at 2060 m) and land cover categories of needleleaf evergreen forests, grasslands, barren and stony terrain, and croplands were the likely predictors of cheer pheasant occurrence. The model predicted a total potential distribution range of 3137.9 km2, most of which lies in India. Interestingly, most areas within this range fall outside the protected areas network and are thus unprotected. The habitat of cheer is believed to require some form of continual disturbance, either naturally or by human intervention, to remain suitable for the species. Given the fact that most of its habitat lies outside the protected areas and the species tolerates limited amount of disturbance to its habitat, the future of the cheer is likely to be in the outside protected areas, provided that extremes of habitat change are limited and hunting is curtailed. Full article
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12 pages, 1321 KiB  
Article
Reversing the Decline in Threatened Species through Effective Conservation Planning
Diversity 2022, 14(9), 754; https://doi.org/10.3390/d14090754 - 13 Sep 2022
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 3191
Abstract
Despite the committed action by many in past decades, recent reviews show little progress in slowing species declines, and future waves of extinction are predicted. Not only do such declines signal a failure to meet international commitments to stem biodiversity loss and undermine [...] Read more.
Despite the committed action by many in past decades, recent reviews show little progress in slowing species declines, and future waves of extinction are predicted. Not only do such declines signal a failure to meet international commitments to stem biodiversity loss and undermine the potential for achievement of the species-related target in the Post-2020 Biodiversity Framework, but they also jeopardize our ability to achieve the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals, many of which rely on the resources provided by species and the ecosystems they support. A substantial increase in ambition and the application of tools at the global scale and across all elements of the species conservation cycle—Assess, Plan, and Act—is urgently needed to create swift and lasting positive change for species. Well-resourced, effectively implemented species conservation plans play a key role in meeting this challenge. Here, the IUCN SSC Conservation Planning Specialist Group (CPSG) presents a proven approach to species conservation planning that emphasizes the thoughtful design and facilitation of collaborative processes that feature the rigorous scientific analysis of quantitative data on species biology and impacts of anthropogenic threats and their mitigation through management. When incorporated from the beginning of a species management project, the CPSG’s principles and steps for conservation planning can help reverse the decline of threatened species. Full article
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19 pages, 2989 KiB  
Article
The Impact of Spatial Delineation on the Assessment of Species Recovery Outcomes
Diversity 2022, 14(9), 742; https://doi.org/10.3390/d14090742 - 09 Sep 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1988
Abstract
In 2021, the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) introduced a novel method for assessing species recovery and conservation impact: the IUCN Green Status of Species. The Green Status standardizes recovery using a metric called the Green Score, which ranges from 0% [...] Read more.
In 2021, the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) introduced a novel method for assessing species recovery and conservation impact: the IUCN Green Status of Species. The Green Status standardizes recovery using a metric called the Green Score, which ranges from 0% to 100%. This study focuses on one crucial step in the Green Status method—the division of a species’ range into so-called “spatial units”—and evaluates whether different approaches for delineating spatial units affect the outcome of the assessment (i.e., the Green Score). We compared Green Scores generated using biologically based spatial units (the recommended method) to Green Scores generated using ecologically based or country-based spatial units for 29 species of birds and mammals in Europe. We found that while spatial units delineated using ecoregions and countries (fine-scale) produced greater average numbers of spatial units and significantly lower average Green Scores than biologically based spatial units, coarse-scale spatial units delineated using biomes and countries above a range proportion threshold did not differ significantly from biologically based results for average spatial unit number or average Green Score. However, case studies focusing on results for individual species (rather than a group average) showed that, depending on characteristics of the species’ distribution, even these coarse-scale delineations of ecological or country spatial units often over- or under-predict the Green Score compared to biologically based spatial units. We discuss cases in which the use of ecologically based or country-based spatial units is recommended or discouraged, in hopes that our results will strengthen the new Green Status framework and ensure consistency in application. Full article
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23 pages, 4444 KiB  
Article
What Do the First 597 Global Fungal Red List Assessments Tell Us about the Threat Status of Fungi?
Diversity 2022, 14(9), 736; https://doi.org/10.3390/d14090736 - 07 Sep 2022
Cited by 13 | Viewed by 8482
Abstract
Fungal species are not immune to the threats facing animals and plants and are thus also prone to extinction. Yet, until 2015, fungi were nearly absent on the IUCN Red List. Recent efforts to identify fungal species under threat have significantly increased the [...] Read more.
Fungal species are not immune to the threats facing animals and plants and are thus also prone to extinction. Yet, until 2015, fungi were nearly absent on the IUCN Red List. Recent efforts to identify fungal species under threat have significantly increased the number of published fungal assessments. The 597 species of fungi published in the 2022-1 IUCN Red List update (21 July 2022) are the basis for the first global review of the extinction risk of fungi and the threats they face. Nearly 50% of the assessed species are threatened, with 10% NT and 9% DD. For regions with a larger number of assessments (i.e., Europe, North America, and South America), subanalyses are provided. Data for lichenized and nonlichenized fungi are also summarized separately. Habitat loss/degradation followed by climate change, invasive species, and pollution are the primary identified threats. Bias in the data is discussed along with knowledge gaps. Suggested actions to address these gaps are provided along with a discussion of the use of assessments to facilitate on-the-ground conservation efforts. A research agenda for conservation mycology to assist in the assessment process and implementation of effective species/habitat management is presented. Full article
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17 pages, 1135 KiB  
Article
Catalyzing Red List Assessments of Underrepresented Taxa through Partner Networks and Student Engagement
Diversity 2022, 14(9), 723; https://doi.org/10.3390/d14090723 - 01 Sep 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 3655
Abstract
Global biodiversity decline is continuing largely unabated. The International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List of Threatened Species (hereafter, Red List) provides us with the gold standard for assessments, but taxonomic coverage, especially for invertebrates and fungi, remains very low. Many [...] Read more.
Global biodiversity decline is continuing largely unabated. The International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List of Threatened Species (hereafter, Red List) provides us with the gold standard for assessments, but taxonomic coverage, especially for invertebrates and fungi, remains very low. Many players contribute to the Red List knowledge base, especially IUCN Red List partners, IUCN-led assessment projects, and the Specialist Groups and Red List Authorities (RLA) of the IUCN Species Survival Commission. However, it is vital that we develop the next generation of contributors and bring in new, diverse voices to build capacity and to sustain the huge assessment effort required to fill data gaps. Here, we discuss a recently established partner network to build additional capacity for species assessments, by linking academia directly into the assessment processes run by Specialist Groups and RLAs. We aim to increase Red List “literacy” amongst potential future conservationists and help students to increase publication output, form professional networks, and develop writing and research skills. Professors can build Red List learning into their teaching and offer Red Listing opportunities to students as assignments or research projects that directly contribute to the Red List. We discuss the opportunities presented by the approach, especially for underrepresented species groups, and the challenges that remain. Full article
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20 pages, 1476 KiB  
Article
Investigating Co-occurrence among Look-alike Species: The Case of Three Bears in Northeast India
Diversity 2022, 14(9), 717; https://doi.org/10.3390/d14090717 - 29 Aug 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1831
Abstract
At the most basic level, the assessment of a species’ status involves knowing where it occurs. Determining the presence of rare species is difficult, and can be further confounded by the presence of a more common look-alike species. We investigated one of the [...] Read more.
At the most basic level, the assessment of a species’ status involves knowing where it occurs. Determining the presence of rare species is difficult, and can be further confounded by the presence of a more common look-alike species. We investigated one of the few places in the world where three species of bears have been reported to co-occur at a fine scale: Balpakram National Park, Meghalaya, India. Asiatic black bears (Ursus thibetanus) are fairly common, and we sought to determine whether sun bears (Helarctos malayanus) and/or sloth bears (Melursus ursinus) also resided there. The local Garo language has words for three types of bears, and some local people reported the continued presence of a small type of bear, possibly the sun bear, but the probable extirpation of sloth bears. Because these bears look somewhat alike, local people and government forest officers could not provide convincing accounts of the presence of more than one species. We measured claw marks on climbed trees, a method used to differentiate sun bears from Asiatic black bears where both are known to occur; however, this method turned out to be unreliable for detecting sun bears where their presence was unknown because sun bear-sized marks are not distinguishable from juvenile black bears. We recommend targeted camera trapping near recent purported sightings of the other two bear species. Full article
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16 pages, 1130 KiB  
Article
Range-Wide Conservation Efforts for the Critically Endangered Atlantic Humpback Dolphin (Sousa teuszii)
Diversity 2022, 14(9), 716; https://doi.org/10.3390/d14090716 - 29 Aug 2022
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 2740
Abstract
The Atlantic humpback dolphin (Sousa teuszii) is a critically endangered cetacean species endemic to coastal Atlantic waters of Africa. Its preference for shallow coastal habitat renders it vulnerable to incidental capture (bycatch) in non-selective fishing gears as well as to habitat [...] Read more.
The Atlantic humpback dolphin (Sousa teuszii) is a critically endangered cetacean species endemic to coastal Atlantic waters of Africa. Its preference for shallow coastal habitat renders it vulnerable to incidental capture (bycatch) in non-selective fishing gears as well as to habitat degradation from all forms of coastal development. Although past and ongoing research has shed light on the distribution and conservation status of the species in a few locations, it is still poorly understood throughout most of the 19 countries in its 7000 km long range. From 2020 onward, international and regional collaboration to increase awareness and promote conservation action has intensified. These efforts, while in the early stages, exemplify the IUCN Species Survival Commission’s Assess-Plan-Act Conservation Cycle. While concrete conservation gains have not yet been achieved, efforts are being made to fill knowledge gaps and to broaden and motivate the network of international, regional, national, and local stakeholders that are actively engaged in marine and coastal conservation actions at multiple levels. The authors assess the strengths and weaknesses of the current approaches and identify elements that may be useful for other species with ranges spanning multiple countries where resources and capacity for conservation action are limited. Full article
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12 pages, 270 KiB  
Article
Tools and Metrics for Species Prioritization for Conservation Planning and Action: Case Studies for Antelopes and Small Mammals
Diversity 2022, 14(9), 704; https://doi.org/10.3390/d14090704 - 26 Aug 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1806
Abstract
Given the scale of the current biodiversity loss, setting conservation priorities is essential to direct scarce resources to where they will be most effective. Many prioritization schemes have been described by using a wide range of criteria that vary across taxonomic groups, spatial [...] Read more.
Given the scale of the current biodiversity loss, setting conservation priorities is essential to direct scarce resources to where they will be most effective. Many prioritization schemes have been described by using a wide range of criteria that vary across taxonomic groups, spatial scales, and ecological, socio-economic, and governance contexts. Currently, there is no single prioritization process applicable to all situations, nor is there a list of agreed metrics. The IUCN SSC Antelope Specialist Group and the Small Mammal Specialist Group recently performed species prioritization exercises based on a similar approach. The variables used included biological, socio-political, and feasibility criteria. The two exercises contained both common and some unique variables, arranged in a matrix for the target species (29 threatened antelopes and 19 critically endangered Mexican small mammals, respectively). The ASG framework provided a global summary of the antelope priorities, which can be updated and adapted to the national level. The SMSG matrix was applied in a regional workshop to select species for which the likelihood of implementing conservation actions was high and led to conservation action plans being developed for six species. The framework we jointly developed in theory can be applied to other taxa, certainly all mammals and perhaps most vertebrates. Full article
13 pages, 1664 KiB  
Article
Using Global Red List Data to Inform Localised Research and Conservation Priorities—A Case Study in the Republic of Seychelles
Diversity 2022, 14(8), 681; https://doi.org/10.3390/d14080681 - 20 Aug 2022
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1992
Abstract
Global Red List assessments are powerful tools for informing large-scale conservation decision-making processes, however, they can also be used to inform more localised research and conservation priorities. Here, a conservation status assessment was conducted for the marine vertebrate biodiversity of two recently designated [...] Read more.
Global Red List assessments are powerful tools for informing large-scale conservation decision-making processes, however, they can also be used to inform more localised research and conservation priorities. Here, a conservation status assessment was conducted for the marine vertebrate biodiversity of two recently designated marine protected areas in the Republic of Seychelles. International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List assessments were compiled and trends in data analysed for the 524 species recorded locally. Findings suggest that 5.5–23.1% of all marine vertebrate biodiversity at the site is threatened or near-threatened with extinction (combined as ‘elevated risk’), and highlights sharks and rays as contributing two thirds (67.9%) to the ‘elevated risk’ biodiversity of the site. Fishing activities constitute the largest threat to every ‘elevated risk’ species using the site, with sharks and rays being most impacted. Species richness analysis across major habitat types evidence the high value of coral reef areas to almost all species and the importance of adjacent deep-water areas for ‘elevated risk’ species. Theoretical national assessments showed that the majority of globally ER species remained in the same Red List category in their respective national assessment. This study demonstrates the value of global Red List data for optimising research efforts and conservation practices on a localised scale and for informing the design and zonation of marine protected areas. Full article
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Review

Jump to: Editorial, Research, Other

17 pages, 1225 KiB  
Review
Addressing Threats and Ecosystem Intactness to Enable Action for Extinct in the Wild Species
Diversity 2023, 15(2), 268; https://doi.org/10.3390/d15020268 - 13 Feb 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 3380
Abstract
The species listed as Extinct in the Wild (EW) in the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species consist of 84 plants and animals that have been lost from their indigenous range. EW species are therefore restricted to ex situ conservation facilities and often [...] Read more.
The species listed as Extinct in the Wild (EW) in the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species consist of 84 plants and animals that have been lost from their indigenous range. EW species are therefore restricted to ex situ conservation facilities and often have populations founded with few individuals. Our analysis demonstrates that 60% of EW species are associated with ecoregions that have very low proportions of intact habitat. Furthermore, threats such as invasive species, pollution, and climate change affect just over half of EW species and compound the obstacles facing their reinstatement to the wild. Despite these bleak assessments, there are various options for EW recovery. We present five scenarios that encapsulate the circumstances facing EW species and suggest potential conservation action for each of these situations. We illustrate these scenarios using case studies of EW species that demonstrate how the various options of ex situ management, reintroduction, and assisted colonisation to new habitat can be used to address the very exacting requirements of EW species. Our aim is to present a broad review of the obstacles facing the recovery of EW species whilst inspiring action to prevent the extinction of the most imperilled species on the planet. Full article
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12 pages, 1210 KiB  
Review
Reversing the Decline in a Threatened Species: The Black-Faced Spoonbill Platalea minor
Diversity 2023, 15(2), 217; https://doi.org/10.3390/d15020217 - 02 Feb 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1613
Abstract
The black-faced spoonbill Platalea minor is a species endemic to the coastal fringes and archipelagos of East Asia. The global population was fewer than 300 individuals in the late 1980s. Since then, two international action plans (1995 and 2010–2020) have been implemented, and [...] Read more.
The black-faced spoonbill Platalea minor is a species endemic to the coastal fringes and archipelagos of East Asia. The global population was fewer than 300 individuals in the late 1980s. Since then, two international action plans (1995 and 2010–2020) have been implemented, and the global population has increased to more than 6000 individuals in 2021–2022; the species was downlisted from “Critically Endangered (CR)” to “Endangered (EN)” in 2000. To examine the basis for this success, we reviewed the implementation of the action plans in light of the IUCN Species Conservation Cycle (Assess–Plan–Act–Network–Communicate) framework, using publicly available information documenting the planned activity or policy outcome. Additionally, we used the IUCN Green Status of Species framework to assess the impact of this conservation effort on the black-faced spoonbill’s recovery to date and recovery potential. We found that the action plans for the black-faced spoonbill contain activities across all SCC framework components, though the number of activities implemented differed among countries. Our preliminary Green Status assessment indicates that the black-faced spoonbill is currently Largely Depleted, with a Species Recovery Score of 35%; however, without past conservation actions, we estimate that its score would be only 15% today (Critically Depleted), and that it is biologically possible for the species to fully recover (100%) in the next 100 years, if ambitious actions are taken. This provides further evidence that premeditated, evidence-based conservation interventions can reverse biodiversity loss. Full article
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42 pages, 1921 KiB  
Review
Measuring the Impact of Conservation: The Growing Importance of Monitoring Fauna, Flora and Funga
Diversity 2022, 14(10), 824; https://doi.org/10.3390/d14100824 - 30 Sep 2022
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 7453
Abstract
Many stakeholders, from governments to civil society to businesses, lack the data they need to make informed decisions on biodiversity, jeopardising efforts to conserve, restore and sustainably manage nature. Here we review the importance of enhancing biodiversity monitoring, assess the challenges involved and [...] Read more.
Many stakeholders, from governments to civil society to businesses, lack the data they need to make informed decisions on biodiversity, jeopardising efforts to conserve, restore and sustainably manage nature. Here we review the importance of enhancing biodiversity monitoring, assess the challenges involved and identify potential solutions. Capacity for biodiversity monitoring needs to be enhanced urgently, especially in poorer, high-biodiversity countries where data gaps are disproportionately high. Modern tools and technologies, including remote sensing, bioacoustics and environmental DNA, should be used at larger scales to fill taxonomic and geographic data gaps, especially in the tropics, in marine and freshwater biomes, and for plants, fungi and invertebrates. Stakeholders need to follow best monitoring practices, adopting appropriate indicators and using counterfactual approaches to measure and attribute outcomes and impacts. Data should be made openly and freely available. Companies need to invest in collecting the data required to enhance sustainability in their operations and supply chains. With governments soon to commit to the post-2020 global biodiversity framework, the time is right to make a concerted push on monitoring. However, action at scale is needed now if we are to enhance results-based management adequately to conserve the biodiversity and ecosystem services we all depend on. Full article
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24 pages, 8643 KiB  
Review
Impact and Lessons Learned from A Half-Century of Primate Conservation Action Planning
Diversity 2022, 14(9), 751; https://doi.org/10.3390/d14090751 - 11 Sep 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 2169
Abstract
Over the last half-century, the world’s human population has doubled, impacting almost all ocean and land areas. The threats facing primates in the wild have never been greater or more complex. Primatologists have long been aware of these threats and, since the 1970s, [...] Read more.
Over the last half-century, the world’s human population has doubled, impacting almost all ocean and land areas. The threats facing primates in the wild have never been greater or more complex. Primatologists have long been aware of these threats and, since the 1970s, have coordinated efforts to safeguard these threatened species, through the International Union for Conservation of Nature Species Survival Commission (IUCN SSC) Primate Specialist Group (PSG). In an effort to stem the threat of extinction to primates, this group of now 700 experts+ has published 17 conservation action plans since 1977. As we look toward the next half-century, we take stock of the history of primate action planning to better understand the costs and benefits of these plans as a conservation tool. Here, we reviewed all plans published by the IUCN SSC PSG. In total, they described USD 246 million in planned primate conservation programming and were cited 1657 times by others. We found that half of the plans had been assessed in regard to their implementation, although these assessments were not standardized. Those that had been assessed, showed evidence of positive impacts on awareness raising, collaboration, fundraising, project implementation and policy, although the impact varied by plan. For example, three of the plans directly resulted in USD 15.92 million in funds raised; four plans quantified implementation rates, which ranged from 38% to 74% of actions partially or completely achieved 5 years after plan publication; and four plans attributed the gazettement of 19 protected areas across 11 countries as indirect successes following the publication of plans. Considered together, we reflect on the ‘return-on-investment’ for developing these plans and consider a range of ‘lessons learned’ for future primate action planning efforts. Full article
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Other

6 pages, 223 KiB  
Opinion
Using the Global Tree Assessment at Multiple Scales of Planning and Action
Diversity 2022, 14(10), 891; https://doi.org/10.3390/d14100891 - 21 Oct 2022
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1323
Abstract
The interlinked biodiversity crisis and challenge of global climate change cannot be addressed without the management of tree species. It is crucial that we use the information now available as a result of the Global Tree Assessment to manage, conserve and restore threatened [...] Read more.
The interlinked biodiversity crisis and challenge of global climate change cannot be addressed without the management of tree species. It is crucial that we use the information now available as a result of the Global Tree Assessment to manage, conserve and restore threatened tree species and tree diversity. With over 17,500 tree species now known to be threatened with extinction, well-planned actions need to be urgently identified and implemented that target multiple species. In this review, we highlight approaches that coordinate and mobilise multi-species conservation at the taxonomic, national, regional and global levels. Only through a considerable scaling up of planning and action will we prevent the extinction of both trees and the associated plants, animals and fungi that depend on them, sustain livelihoods and ensure the ecological health of the planet. Full article
10 pages, 1047 KiB  
Opinion
Addressing the Biodiversity Paradox: Mismatch between the Co-Occurrence of Biological Diversity and the Human, Financial and Institutional Resources to Address Its Decline
Diversity 2022, 14(9), 708; https://doi.org/10.3390/d14090708 - 26 Aug 2022
Cited by 10 | Viewed by 4645
Abstract
Pressures are mounting for the adoption of a Global Biodiversity Framework that transforms conservation and sustainable use efforts worldwide. Underlying this challenge is the biodiversity paradox: biological diversity predominantly concentrates in the tropics, while human, institutional, and financial resources are primarily located [...] Read more.
Pressures are mounting for the adoption of a Global Biodiversity Framework that transforms conservation and sustainable use efforts worldwide. Underlying this challenge is the biodiversity paradox: biological diversity predominantly concentrates in the tropics, while human, institutional, and financial resources are primarily located at higher latitudes both north and south. Addressing the biodiversity paradox requires the expansion and mobilization of human, institutional and financial resources around the world. We outline a model championed by the IUCN Species Survival Commission (SSC) that builds on the Species Conservation Cycle (Assess-Plan-Act-Network-Communicate) and recognizes that most conservation action occurs at the national or local level. Various strategies are applied to this end by the partners of Reverse the Red, a global movement that ignites strategic cooperation and science-based action to ensure the survival of wild species and ecosystems. The SSC contributes to Reverse the Red through two primary strategies: National Species Specialist Groups and Centers for Species Survival. By building on existing expert networks and catalyzing efforts with established local institutions, we aim to significantly expand capacity to implement conservation action at the national level and reverse the negative trends indicated by the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species and the Red List of Ecosystems. Full article
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