Size of selection units for future reserves and its influence on actual vs targeted representation of features: a case study in western New South Wales

Size of selection units for future reserves and its influence on actual vs targeted... Most systematic assessments of future conservation areas rely on selection units—parts of the landscape that are analysed as the potential building blocks of an expanded system of reserves. Selection units can be natural, administrative or arbitrary subdivisions of the landscape. They differ widely in size between studies and within regions. The paper begins with a review of the role of selection units in conservation planning and the implications of using them. The review is followed by quantitative analyses on a large regional data set. We show that the total extent of new reserves needed to represent all land types (land systems in this case) to different targeted levels depends strongly on the size of the selection units. Differences in required total areas are related to the extent to which some land types are represented above target levels. The results indicate that some degree of inefficiency is inevitable in any reserve selection exercise based on units that are large enough to function as viable reserves or to be amalgamated realistically into viable reserves. We also show that the actual representation of land types in selected reserves is related to their distributional parameters, so that the extent of above-target representation is predictable to some extent. Finally, we show that patterns of actual vs targeted representation from a reserve selection algorithm are very different from those arising from random selection of the same number of areas. Selection algorithms introduce a degree of above-target representation which is the price of guaranteeing that all features are represented at least to target levels. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Biological Conservation Elsevier

Size of selection units for future reserves and its influence on actual vs targeted representation of features: a case study in western New South Wales

Biological Conservation, Volume 85 (3) – Sep 1, 1998

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Publisher
Elsevier
Copyright
Copyright © 1998 Elsevier Ltd
ISSN
0006-3207
DOI
10.1016/S0006-3207(97)00146-8
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Most systematic assessments of future conservation areas rely on selection units—parts of the landscape that are analysed as the potential building blocks of an expanded system of reserves. Selection units can be natural, administrative or arbitrary subdivisions of the landscape. They differ widely in size between studies and within regions. The paper begins with a review of the role of selection units in conservation planning and the implications of using them. The review is followed by quantitative analyses on a large regional data set. We show that the total extent of new reserves needed to represent all land types (land systems in this case) to different targeted levels depends strongly on the size of the selection units. Differences in required total areas are related to the extent to which some land types are represented above target levels. The results indicate that some degree of inefficiency is inevitable in any reserve selection exercise based on units that are large enough to function as viable reserves or to be amalgamated realistically into viable reserves. We also show that the actual representation of land types in selected reserves is related to their distributional parameters, so that the extent of above-target representation is predictable to some extent. Finally, we show that patterns of actual vs targeted representation from a reserve selection algorithm are very different from those arising from random selection of the same number of areas. Selection algorithms introduce a degree of above-target representation which is the price of guaranteeing that all features are represented at least to target levels.

Journal

Biological ConservationElsevier

Published: Sep 1, 1998

References

  • Reserve selection as a maximal covering location problem
    Church, R.L.; Stoms, D.M.; Davis, F.W.
  • A comparison of reserve selection algorithms using data on terrestrial vertebrates in Oregon
    Csuti, B.; Polasky, S.; Williams, P.H.; Pressey, R.L.; Camm, J.D.; Kershaw, M.; Kiester, A.R.; Downs, B.; Hamilton, R.; Huso, M.; Sahr, K.
  • Threatened status, rarity and diversity as alternative selection measures for protected areas: a test using Afrotropical antelopes
    Kershaw, M.; Mace, G.M.; Williams, P.H.
  • Where should nature reserves be located in South Africa?
    Lombard, A.T.; Nicholls, A.O.; August, P.V.
  • Reserve coverage and requirements in relation to partitioning and generalization of land classes: analyses for western New South Wales
    Pressey, R.L.; Logan, V.S.
  • Optimality in reserve selection algorithms: when does it matter and how much?
    Pressey, R.L.; Possingham, H.P.; Margules, C.R.
  • Effectiveness of alternative heuristic algorithms for identifying indicative minimum requirements for conservation reserves
    Pressey, R.L.; Possingham, H.P.; Day, J.
  • Biological consequences of ecosystem fragmentation: a review
    Saunders, D.A.; Hobbs, R.J.; Margules, C.R.

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