Limits...
Connectivity of the Asiatic wild ass population in the Mongolian Gobi.

Kaczensky P, Kuehn R, Lhagvasuren B, Pietsch S, Yang W, Walzer C - Biol. Conserv. (2011)

Bottom Line: Population genetics results identified two subpopulations and delineated a genetic boundary between the Dzungarian and Transaltai Gobi for which the most likely explanation are the mountain ranges separating the two areas.Home ranges and locations of 19 radiomarked wild asses support the assumed restricting effects of more productive habitats and mountain ranges and additionally point towards a barrier effect of fences.In the southwest Gobi, allowing for openings in the border fence to China and managing the border area as an ecological corridor would connect three large protected areas together covering over 70,000 km(2) of wild ass habitat.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Research Institute of Wildlife Ecology, University of Veterinary Medicine, Vienna, Austria.

ABSTRACT
Long-distance migrations of wildlife have been identified as important biological phenomena, but their conservation remains a major challenge. The Mongolian Gobi is one of the last refuges for the Asiatic wild ass (Equus hemionus) and other threatened migratory mammals. Using historic and current distribution ranges, population genetics, and telemetry data we assessed the connectivity of the wild ass population in the context of natural and anthropogenic landscape features and the existing network of protected areas. In the Mongolian Gobi mean biomass production is highly correlated with human and livestock density and seems to predict wild ass occurrence at the upper level. The current wild ass distribution range largely falls into areas below the 250 gC/m(2)/year productivity isoline, suggesting that under the present land use more productive areas have become unavailable for wild asses. Population genetics results identified two subpopulations and delineated a genetic boundary between the Dzungarian and Transaltai Gobi for which the most likely explanation are the mountain ranges separating the two areas. Home ranges and locations of 19 radiomarked wild asses support the assumed restricting effects of more productive habitats and mountain ranges and additionally point towards a barrier effect of fences. Furthermore, telemetry data shows that in the Dzungarian and Transaltai Gobi individual wild ass rarely ventured outside of the protected areas, whereas in the southeast Gobi asses only spend a small fraction of their time within the protected area network. Conserving the continuity of the wild ass population will need a landscape level approach, also including multi-use landscapes outside of protected areas, particularly in the southeast Gobi. In the southwest Gobi, allowing for openings in the border fence to China and managing the border area as an ecological corridor would connect three large protected areas together covering over 70,000 km(2) of wild ass habitat.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus

(A) Connectivity and extent of suitable wild ass habitat (light green) in the Gobi regions of Mongolian and northern China under the present land use intensity. Protected areas are marked with a green outline. Unsuitable areas, such as areas of high productivity (as a proxy for human/livestock density) are coloured black. Anthropogenic barriers are marked red and natural barriers in the form of steep slopes in orange. White- and light grey-areas delineate habitat believed to be marginal due to very low productivity and mountains, respectively. (B) Insert: The connectivity of wild ass habitat in the southwest could be enhanced by removing the border fence or by at least allowing for openings at strategic points. Declaring the border area an “ecological corridor” would link three large protected areas in central Asia which together cover 61,000 km2. Blue arrows mark the most likely movement corridors for Asiatic wild asses between the three protected areas.
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f0020: (A) Connectivity and extent of suitable wild ass habitat (light green) in the Gobi regions of Mongolian and northern China under the present land use intensity. Protected areas are marked with a green outline. Unsuitable areas, such as areas of high productivity (as a proxy for human/livestock density) are coloured black. Anthropogenic barriers are marked red and natural barriers in the form of steep slopes in orange. White- and light grey-areas delineate habitat believed to be marginal due to very low productivity and mountains, respectively. (B) Insert: The connectivity of wild ass habitat in the southwest could be enhanced by removing the border fence or by at least allowing for openings at strategic points. Declaring the border area an “ecological corridor” would link three large protected areas in central Asia which together cover 61,000 km2. Blue arrows mark the most likely movement corridors for Asiatic wild asses between the three protected areas.

Mentions: By combining the restraining effects of fences, mountains, and areas with a productivity >250 gC/m2/year, we mapped the remaining wild ass habitat over the entire Gobi (Fig. 4). The low wild ass population density in the Transaltai Gobi suggests that areas with a productivity <100 gC/m2/year and mountainous terrain likely constitute marginal habitat.


Connectivity of the Asiatic wild ass population in the Mongolian Gobi.

Kaczensky P, Kuehn R, Lhagvasuren B, Pietsch S, Yang W, Walzer C - Biol. Conserv. (2011)

(A) Connectivity and extent of suitable wild ass habitat (light green) in the Gobi regions of Mongolian and northern China under the present land use intensity. Protected areas are marked with a green outline. Unsuitable areas, such as areas of high productivity (as a proxy for human/livestock density) are coloured black. Anthropogenic barriers are marked red and natural barriers in the form of steep slopes in orange. White- and light grey-areas delineate habitat believed to be marginal due to very low productivity and mountains, respectively. (B) Insert: The connectivity of wild ass habitat in the southwest could be enhanced by removing the border fence or by at least allowing for openings at strategic points. Declaring the border area an “ecological corridor” would link three large protected areas in central Asia which together cover 61,000 km2. Blue arrows mark the most likely movement corridors for Asiatic wild asses between the three protected areas.
© Copyright Policy
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC3040789&req=5

f0020: (A) Connectivity and extent of suitable wild ass habitat (light green) in the Gobi regions of Mongolian and northern China under the present land use intensity. Protected areas are marked with a green outline. Unsuitable areas, such as areas of high productivity (as a proxy for human/livestock density) are coloured black. Anthropogenic barriers are marked red and natural barriers in the form of steep slopes in orange. White- and light grey-areas delineate habitat believed to be marginal due to very low productivity and mountains, respectively. (B) Insert: The connectivity of wild ass habitat in the southwest could be enhanced by removing the border fence or by at least allowing for openings at strategic points. Declaring the border area an “ecological corridor” would link three large protected areas in central Asia which together cover 61,000 km2. Blue arrows mark the most likely movement corridors for Asiatic wild asses between the three protected areas.
Mentions: By combining the restraining effects of fences, mountains, and areas with a productivity >250 gC/m2/year, we mapped the remaining wild ass habitat over the entire Gobi (Fig. 4). The low wild ass population density in the Transaltai Gobi suggests that areas with a productivity <100 gC/m2/year and mountainous terrain likely constitute marginal habitat.

Bottom Line: Population genetics results identified two subpopulations and delineated a genetic boundary between the Dzungarian and Transaltai Gobi for which the most likely explanation are the mountain ranges separating the two areas.Home ranges and locations of 19 radiomarked wild asses support the assumed restricting effects of more productive habitats and mountain ranges and additionally point towards a barrier effect of fences.In the southwest Gobi, allowing for openings in the border fence to China and managing the border area as an ecological corridor would connect three large protected areas together covering over 70,000 km(2) of wild ass habitat.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Research Institute of Wildlife Ecology, University of Veterinary Medicine, Vienna, Austria.

ABSTRACT
Long-distance migrations of wildlife have been identified as important biological phenomena, but their conservation remains a major challenge. The Mongolian Gobi is one of the last refuges for the Asiatic wild ass (Equus hemionus) and other threatened migratory mammals. Using historic and current distribution ranges, population genetics, and telemetry data we assessed the connectivity of the wild ass population in the context of natural and anthropogenic landscape features and the existing network of protected areas. In the Mongolian Gobi mean biomass production is highly correlated with human and livestock density and seems to predict wild ass occurrence at the upper level. The current wild ass distribution range largely falls into areas below the 250 gC/m(2)/year productivity isoline, suggesting that under the present land use more productive areas have become unavailable for wild asses. Population genetics results identified two subpopulations and delineated a genetic boundary between the Dzungarian and Transaltai Gobi for which the most likely explanation are the mountain ranges separating the two areas. Home ranges and locations of 19 radiomarked wild asses support the assumed restricting effects of more productive habitats and mountain ranges and additionally point towards a barrier effect of fences. Furthermore, telemetry data shows that in the Dzungarian and Transaltai Gobi individual wild ass rarely ventured outside of the protected areas, whereas in the southeast Gobi asses only spend a small fraction of their time within the protected area network. Conserving the continuity of the wild ass population will need a landscape level approach, also including multi-use landscapes outside of protected areas, particularly in the southeast Gobi. In the southwest Gobi, allowing for openings in the border fence to China and managing the border area as an ecological corridor would connect three large protected areas together covering over 70,000 km(2) of wild ass habitat.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus