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Modelling the effects of sanitary policies on European vulture conservation.

Margalida A, Colomer MÀ - Sci Rep (2012)

Bottom Line: Biodiversity losses are increasing as a consequence of negative anthropogenic effects on ecosystem dynamics.A novel computational model (P-systems) was used to model these effects, forecasting a rapid decline in the Eurasian griffon vulture (Gyps fulvus).By contrast, vulture species with greater plasticity in their dietary range appeared less sensitive to declining food availability.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Division of Conservation Biology, Institute of Ecology and Evolution, University of Bern, Bern, Switzerland. antoni.margalida@iee.unibe.ch

ABSTRACT
Biodiversity losses are increasing as a consequence of negative anthropogenic effects on ecosystem dynamics. However, the magnitude and complexity of these effects may still be greatly underestimated. Most Old World vultures have experienced rapid population declines in recent years. In Europe, their immediate conservation depends on changes in health regulations affecting the availability of food provided by domestic carcasses. Information is lacking on the effects of a hypothetical food shortage on the population dynamics of vultures, and is necessary to assess the potential impacts of policy decisions on future changes in biodiversity and ecosystem services. A novel computational model (P-systems) was used to model these effects, forecasting a rapid decline in the Eurasian griffon vulture (Gyps fulvus). By contrast, vulture species with greater plasticity in their dietary range appeared less sensitive to declining food availability. This study extends our understanding of vulture ecosystem services, which have social and economic implications.

Show MeSH
Predicted population trend of the Eurasian griffon vulture in the different areas, according the four scenarios of domestic carcasses available.The population increase in several areas in which the species is initially absent (VA and C) or of low densities is a consequence of spatial changes related with food shortages or maximum carrying capacity.
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f4: Predicted population trend of the Eurasian griffon vulture in the different areas, according the four scenarios of domestic carcasses available.The population increase in several areas in which the species is initially absent (VA and C) or of low densities is a consequence of spatial changes related with food shortages or maximum carrying capacity.

Mentions: Assuming the network movements estimated in the study area (Figure 3), the predicted response of griffon vulture populations to the different scenarios studied is shown in Figure 4. With 25% or 0% of domestic carcasses available, a significant reduction of the population was forecasted in all study areas. The decrease was especially important in populated areas (AR, PJ and AU). A decrease of 50% in the contributions of domestic carcasses was predicted to promote movement of animals between neighbouring areas (Figure 3). It was predicted that most individuals would not colonize new areas, so the population balance of the species in each area was not predicted to be affected (a trend similar to the 100% scenario) and only some individuals could colonize unoccupied areas such as VA and C. The growth trend with 50% domestic carcass availability is similar to 100% availability during the first 12 years. After this time, the food resources in the receiving areas (VA, C, B and N) were predicted to be insufficient for all pairs such that there is a significant decrease in griffon vulture populations in areas AR, PJ and AU and population stability only occurred with an increase in the biomass provided by wild ungulate populations.


Modelling the effects of sanitary policies on European vulture conservation.

Margalida A, Colomer MÀ - Sci Rep (2012)

Predicted population trend of the Eurasian griffon vulture in the different areas, according the four scenarios of domestic carcasses available.The population increase in several areas in which the species is initially absent (VA and C) or of low densities is a consequence of spatial changes related with food shortages or maximum carrying capacity.
© Copyright Policy - open-access
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC3475340&req=5

f4: Predicted population trend of the Eurasian griffon vulture in the different areas, according the four scenarios of domestic carcasses available.The population increase in several areas in which the species is initially absent (VA and C) or of low densities is a consequence of spatial changes related with food shortages or maximum carrying capacity.
Mentions: Assuming the network movements estimated in the study area (Figure 3), the predicted response of griffon vulture populations to the different scenarios studied is shown in Figure 4. With 25% or 0% of domestic carcasses available, a significant reduction of the population was forecasted in all study areas. The decrease was especially important in populated areas (AR, PJ and AU). A decrease of 50% in the contributions of domestic carcasses was predicted to promote movement of animals between neighbouring areas (Figure 3). It was predicted that most individuals would not colonize new areas, so the population balance of the species in each area was not predicted to be affected (a trend similar to the 100% scenario) and only some individuals could colonize unoccupied areas such as VA and C. The growth trend with 50% domestic carcass availability is similar to 100% availability during the first 12 years. After this time, the food resources in the receiving areas (VA, C, B and N) were predicted to be insufficient for all pairs such that there is a significant decrease in griffon vulture populations in areas AR, PJ and AU and population stability only occurred with an increase in the biomass provided by wild ungulate populations.

Bottom Line: Biodiversity losses are increasing as a consequence of negative anthropogenic effects on ecosystem dynamics.A novel computational model (P-systems) was used to model these effects, forecasting a rapid decline in the Eurasian griffon vulture (Gyps fulvus).By contrast, vulture species with greater plasticity in their dietary range appeared less sensitive to declining food availability.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Division of Conservation Biology, Institute of Ecology and Evolution, University of Bern, Bern, Switzerland. antoni.margalida@iee.unibe.ch

ABSTRACT
Biodiversity losses are increasing as a consequence of negative anthropogenic effects on ecosystem dynamics. However, the magnitude and complexity of these effects may still be greatly underestimated. Most Old World vultures have experienced rapid population declines in recent years. In Europe, their immediate conservation depends on changes in health regulations affecting the availability of food provided by domestic carcasses. Information is lacking on the effects of a hypothetical food shortage on the population dynamics of vultures, and is necessary to assess the potential impacts of policy decisions on future changes in biodiversity and ecosystem services. A novel computational model (P-systems) was used to model these effects, forecasting a rapid decline in the Eurasian griffon vulture (Gyps fulvus). By contrast, vulture species with greater plasticity in their dietary range appeared less sensitive to declining food availability. This study extends our understanding of vulture ecosystem services, which have social and economic implications.

Show MeSH