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A new framework of spatial targeting for single-species conservation planning

Burgess, M; Gregory, R; Wilson, J; Gillings, S; Evans, A; Chisholm, K; Southern, A; (2019) A new framework of spatial targeting for single-species conservation planning. Landscape Ecology , 34 pp. 2765-2778. 10.1007/s10980-019-00919-3. Green open access

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Abstract

Context: Organisations acting to conserve and protect species across large spatial scales prioritise to optimise use of resources. Spatial conservation prioritization tools typically focus on identifying areas containing species groups of interest, with few tools used to identify the best areas for single-species conservation, in particular, to conserve currently widespread but declining species. / Objective: A single-species prioritization framework, based on temporal and spatial patterns of occupancy and abundance, was developed to spatially prioritize conservation action for widespread species by identifying smaller areas to work within to achieve predefined conservation objectives. / Methods: We demonstrate our approach for 29 widespread bird species in the UK, using breeding bird atlas data from two periods to define distribution, relative abundance and change in relative abundance. We selected occupied 10-km squares with abundance trends that matched species conservation objectives relating to maintaining or increasing population size or range, and then identified spatial clusters of squares for each objective using a Getis-Ord-Gi* or near neighbour analysis. / Results: For each species, the framework identified clusters of 20-km squares that enabled us to identify small areas in which species recovery action could be prioritized. / Conclusions: Our approach identified a proportion of species’ ranges to prioritize for species recovery. This approach is a relatively quick process that can be used to inform single-species conservation for any taxa if sufficiently fine-scale occupancy and abundance information is available for two or more time periods. This is a relatively simple first step for planning single-species focussed conservation to help optimise resource use.

Type: Article
Title: A new framework of spatial targeting for single-species conservation planning
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1007/s10980-019-00919-3
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1007/s10980-019-00919-3
Language: English
Additional information: This version is the author accepted manuscript. For information on re-use, please refer to the publisher’s terms and conditions.
Keywords: Spatial conservation prioritization, Conservation intervention, Widespread species, Isolated population, Bird atlas, Abundance
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Life Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Life Sciences > Div of Biosciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Life Sciences > Div of Biosciences > Genetics, Evolution and Environment
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10090137
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