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Impediments to the success of management actions for species recovery.

Ng CF, Possingham HP, McAlpine CA, de Villiers DL, Preece HJ, Rhodes JR - PLoS ONE (2014)

Bottom Line: We found that the unwillingness of dog owners to restrain their dogs at night (a social impediment), the effectiveness of wildlife crossings to reduce vehicle collisions (a technological impediment) and the unavailability of areas for restoration (a land-use impediment) significantly reduced the effectiveness of our actions.In the presence of these impediments, achieving successful recovery may be unlikely.In some cases, it may also be worth considering whether investing in reducing or removing impediments may be a cost-effective course of action.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: School of Mathematics and Physics, The University of Queensland, Brisbane, Queensland, Australia; Australian Research Council Centre of Excellence for Environmental Decisions, The University of Queensland, Brisbane, Queensland, Australia; National Environmental Research Program Environmental Decisions Hub, The University of Queensland, Brisbane, Queensland, Australia.

ABSTRACT
Finding cost-effective management strategies to recover species declining due to multiple threats is challenging, especially when there are limited resources. Recent studies offer insights into how costs and threats can influence the best choice of management actions. However, when implementing management actions in the real-world, a range of impediments to management success often exist that can be driven by social, technological and land-use factors. These impediments may limit the extent to which we can achieve recovery objectives and influence the optimal choice of management actions. Nonetheless, the implications of these impediments are not well understood, especially for recovery planning involving multiple actions. We used decision theory to assess the impact of these types of impediments for allocating resources among recovery actions to mitigate multiple threats. We applied this to a declining koala (Phascolarctos cinereus) population threatened by habitat loss, vehicle collisions, dog attacks and disease. We found that the unwillingness of dog owners to restrain their dogs at night (a social impediment), the effectiveness of wildlife crossings to reduce vehicle collisions (a technological impediment) and the unavailability of areas for restoration (a land-use impediment) significantly reduced the effectiveness of our actions. In the presence of these impediments, achieving successful recovery may be unlikely. Further, these impediments influenced the optimal choice of recovery actions, but the extent to which this was true depended on the target koala population growth rate. Given that species recovery is an important strategy for preserving biodiversity, it is critical that we consider how impediments to the success of recovery actions modify our choice of actions. In some cases, it may also be worth considering whether investing in reducing or removing impediments may be a cost-effective course of action.

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The optimal management strategy (percentage investment in each management action) to achieve the target population growth rate.When we (a) include and (b) exclude impediments to success (the solid line corresponds to reducing vehicle collisions, the dashed line corresponds to habitat restoration, and the dotted line corresponds to dog control.
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pone-0092430-g002: The optimal management strategy (percentage investment in each management action) to achieve the target population growth rate.When we (a) include and (b) exclude impediments to success (the solid line corresponds to reducing vehicle collisions, the dashed line corresponds to habitat restoration, and the dotted line corresponds to dog control.

Mentions: The optimal strategy for resource allocation among the management actions depended on the target population growth rate (Fig. 2). To achieve a low target growth rate (i.e., up to 0.97 with impediments and up to 0.99 without impediments), the optimal strategy was to invest predominantly in vehicle collision mitigation and dog control measures. However, to achieve target growth rates higher than this, the optimal strategy shifts rapidly towards habitat restoration (Fig. 2). Importantly, however, with the impediments, this shift occurs at a much lower growth rate (0.97) than without the impediments (0.99). Therefore, for target growth rates between 0.97 and 0.99, the optimal strategies with and without impediments are substantially different. In addition, the maximum possible population growth rate that can be obtained was lower in the presence of impediments (0.99) than in their absence (1.03).


Impediments to the success of management actions for species recovery.

Ng CF, Possingham HP, McAlpine CA, de Villiers DL, Preece HJ, Rhodes JR - PLoS ONE (2014)

The optimal management strategy (percentage investment in each management action) to achieve the target population growth rate.When we (a) include and (b) exclude impediments to success (the solid line corresponds to reducing vehicle collisions, the dashed line corresponds to habitat restoration, and the dotted line corresponds to dog control.
© Copyright Policy
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC3974711&req=5

pone-0092430-g002: The optimal management strategy (percentage investment in each management action) to achieve the target population growth rate.When we (a) include and (b) exclude impediments to success (the solid line corresponds to reducing vehicle collisions, the dashed line corresponds to habitat restoration, and the dotted line corresponds to dog control.
Mentions: The optimal strategy for resource allocation among the management actions depended on the target population growth rate (Fig. 2). To achieve a low target growth rate (i.e., up to 0.97 with impediments and up to 0.99 without impediments), the optimal strategy was to invest predominantly in vehicle collision mitigation and dog control measures. However, to achieve target growth rates higher than this, the optimal strategy shifts rapidly towards habitat restoration (Fig. 2). Importantly, however, with the impediments, this shift occurs at a much lower growth rate (0.97) than without the impediments (0.99). Therefore, for target growth rates between 0.97 and 0.99, the optimal strategies with and without impediments are substantially different. In addition, the maximum possible population growth rate that can be obtained was lower in the presence of impediments (0.99) than in their absence (1.03).

Bottom Line: We found that the unwillingness of dog owners to restrain their dogs at night (a social impediment), the effectiveness of wildlife crossings to reduce vehicle collisions (a technological impediment) and the unavailability of areas for restoration (a land-use impediment) significantly reduced the effectiveness of our actions.In the presence of these impediments, achieving successful recovery may be unlikely.In some cases, it may also be worth considering whether investing in reducing or removing impediments may be a cost-effective course of action.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: School of Mathematics and Physics, The University of Queensland, Brisbane, Queensland, Australia; Australian Research Council Centre of Excellence for Environmental Decisions, The University of Queensland, Brisbane, Queensland, Australia; National Environmental Research Program Environmental Decisions Hub, The University of Queensland, Brisbane, Queensland, Australia.

ABSTRACT
Finding cost-effective management strategies to recover species declining due to multiple threats is challenging, especially when there are limited resources. Recent studies offer insights into how costs and threats can influence the best choice of management actions. However, when implementing management actions in the real-world, a range of impediments to management success often exist that can be driven by social, technological and land-use factors. These impediments may limit the extent to which we can achieve recovery objectives and influence the optimal choice of management actions. Nonetheless, the implications of these impediments are not well understood, especially for recovery planning involving multiple actions. We used decision theory to assess the impact of these types of impediments for allocating resources among recovery actions to mitigate multiple threats. We applied this to a declining koala (Phascolarctos cinereus) population threatened by habitat loss, vehicle collisions, dog attacks and disease. We found that the unwillingness of dog owners to restrain their dogs at night (a social impediment), the effectiveness of wildlife crossings to reduce vehicle collisions (a technological impediment) and the unavailability of areas for restoration (a land-use impediment) significantly reduced the effectiveness of our actions. In the presence of these impediments, achieving successful recovery may be unlikely. Further, these impediments influenced the optimal choice of recovery actions, but the extent to which this was true depended on the target koala population growth rate. Given that species recovery is an important strategy for preserving biodiversity, it is critical that we consider how impediments to the success of recovery actions modify our choice of actions. In some cases, it may also be worth considering whether investing in reducing or removing impediments may be a cost-effective course of action.

Show MeSH
Related in: MedlinePlus