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What disciplines does conservation management involve?

- biology
- legal/regulatory frameworks
- social sciences
- economics


How are declines economically driven?

- long-term economic value usually increased by sustainable management

- short-term economic value increases with high demand and low supply e.g. rarity

e.g. european eel: pop decline reduced trade volume by 50%, export value increased tenfold


When is non-sustainable management ecologically viable?

- tragedy of the commons: because others are also exploiting resource, future economic gain isn't viable
- population growth rates are lower than interest rates

- usually true for slowly reproducing animals like whales as sustainable harvest rates are low


How to deal with economic externalities?

- smoking example

- costs imposed on some that aren't paid for by those doing the damage
- e.g. smokers impose cost of passive smoking and cost of health care due to smoking related diseases

- internalise the external costs
- force person causing damage to pay for it, e.g. high taxes on cigarettes
- internalising costs reduces damage


What are the economic externalities of deforestation?

- stabilise soils, regulate water flow, increase water quality

intensive logging reduces these
- mud-slides, fluctuating river levels, sedimentation

changes to down-stream water quality & quantity impact farmers & fishermen:
- logging companies don't pay for costs imposed downstream
- instead poor farmers/fishermen subsidising wealthy logging company owners


How to deal with economic externalities of deforestation?

- internalise the costs
- force logging companies to compensate people affected downstream
- reduces logging profitability and deforestation rates

- very difficult to work out compensatory scheme details


What's the difference between internalisation vs compensation?

- industry compensated for lost revenue from changing damaging practices to wildlife friendly ones

- polluter pays vs paid not to pollute

e.g. agri-environment scheme, REDD+


What are the two main legislative processes?

- e.g. trade in endangered species (CITES), persecution, pollution

facilitating legislation
- e.g. green certification schemes


What is CITES? What are the three CITES categories?

- CITES = convention on international trade in endangered species of wild fauna and flora

Category 1:
- species threatened with extinction
- international trade usually banned
- trophy hunting may be allowed in some circumstances
- ~800 species

Category 2:
- species that may be threatened with extinction if no action taken
- international trade controlled
- ~32500 species

Category 3:
- species included at the request of a party that regulates trade and needs cooperation
- ~300 species


Do trade bans work?

- yellow crested cockatoo

e.g. yellow crested cockatoo (Cahill, 2006)
- 1981: CITES appendix 2
- heavy trade continued
- total trade ban in 1994
- increase in numbers by 2002


Do trade bans work?

trade spikes:
- massive increase in trade after plan to ban trade announced but before implemented
- (Rivalan et al., 2007): 50% mature population size traded during trade spike, 10% of Geofroy's cat

decreased price:
- large carnivore influence on farmers profits
- negative on livestock predation
- positive on trophy hunting
- banning trophy hunting of carnivores imposes net negative effect on profits & thus persecution

- trade bans can drive trade underground and promote armed conflict
- both hinder monitoring and increase conservation cost
- illegal logging makes $100B/y for organised crime


How do the social sciences interact with conservation management?

- can't ignore people
- places with high conservation importance often have a lot of people
e.g. threatened bird species richness maps onto human population density
- population growth high around protected areas

- historical response to kick people out of protected areas
- leads to intense resentment of conservation
- not sustainable


How did social sciences improve local perception of Kossi Tapu Wildlife Reserve, Nepal?

- 65% local people did not like the protected area
- thought water buffalo broke fences and raided crops
- disliked resource use restriction

research demonstrated:
- thatch collection is economically viable
- fence damage is from lifestock entering reserve

- education disseminating this info made local perceptions more positive


How did social sciences improve local perception of Siamese crocodiles?

- 250 mature individuals left
- pressure from hunting & deforestation

conservation programmes:
- doubled rice yields during food insecurity
- increased non-timber forest product sales
- significantly decreased logging and poaching
- crocodile populations recovering


To manage or not to manage in a crisis?

- rapid decisions often have to be made on limited knowledge base
- wrong decisions can be highly detrimental
- no action may sometimes be best option

lack of action can also be bad though:
- slender billed curlew went extinct
- conservation action not implemented until well after decline began
- max 19 left in 1990s when conservation efforts begam


What are the five general principles of conservation management?

- critical biodiversity composition and ecological processes must be maintained

- minimise external threats and maximise external benefits

- conserve capacity for ecological processes

- management must be minimally intrusive

- management must be monitored and adaptive


The five general principles of conservation management:

- critical biodiversity composition and ecological processes must be maintained

- natural processes & disturbances key to maintaining biodiversity
- ecosystem management encourages/mimics these processes

hindered by:
- lack of data on natural disturbance regimes
- small management areas that limit development of large diverse habitats

ecosystem management can work
- e.g. north american fire regimes
- encouraged regeneration, reduced major fire damage

ecosystem management can also fail
- e.g. restoring natural water flow in everglades failed to prevent wood stork population declines
- specific habitat needs not met


The five general principles of conservation management:

- minimise external threats and maximise external benefits

e.g. ethiopian wolf & rabies control

- endemic to ethiopian highlands
- endangered, 500 adults and sub adults, in 7 isolated populations surrounded by numerous villages

external threats:
- canine distemper & rabies outbreaks spread by dogs
external benefits:
- public health
- ecotourism

primary management:
- dog vaccination & sterilisation
- uptake rates less than ideal

secondary management:
- reduce livestock predation and perception of risk
- education regarding external benefits
- ensure external benefits are realised


The five general principles of conservation management:

- conserve capacity for ecological processes

- adaptive potential requires natural selection and individual death, conflicting with conservation goals

- amahiki populations at low elevations are recovering despite high rates of malaria infection
- probably evolving resistance
(Woodworth et al., 2005)


The five general principles of conservation management:

- management must be minimally intrusive

Chatham Island Black robin
(NZ): a success story but one
that made major errors

- tom-tit exterminated on island
with sole robin population due
to competition
- double clutching & cross
fostering, but failed with 1st trial
species Chatham island
- only worked with tom-tit so
eggs had to be transferred to
another island


The five general principles of conservation management:

- management must be monitored and adaptive: island fox example

Island fox:
- critically endangered
- feral pigs: habitat destruction & attract golden eagles that also predate foxes.
- pig control: increases eagle predation on foxes
- similar to meso-predator release with control of rats and cats


The five general principles of conservation management:

- management must be monitored and adaptive

- define initial team/scope/vision/targets
- identify critical threats
- complete situation analysis

Plan Actions and Monitoring:
- develop goals, strategies, assumption, objectives
- develop operating/monitoring plans

Implement Actions and Monitoring:
- develop work plan/timeline/budget
- implement plans

Analyse, Use, Adapt:
- prepare data for analysis
- analyse results
- adapt strategic plan

Capture and Share Learning:
- document learning
- share learning
- create learning environment


What is the centre for evidence based conservation (CEBC)?

- limited access to data for conservation managers
- poorly connected to scientists and each other
- much data in grey literature/not written down
- time and financial constraints on data access

CEBC conducts systematic reviews & freely publishing results to combat this