A Multispecies Approach to Ecological Valuation and Conservation

A Multispecies Approach to Ecological Valuation and Conservation Abstract: The conservation of ecosystems focuses on evaluating individual sites or landscapes based on their component species. To produce a map of conservation values, we developed a method to weight habitat‐suitability maps for individual species by species‐specific extinction risks. The value of a particular site reflects the importance and magnitude of the threats facing the component species of the ecological community. We applied this approach to a set of species from the California Gap Analysis Project. The resulting map of multispecies conservation values identified the areas with the best habitat for the species most vulnerable to extinction. These methods are flexible and can accommodate the quantity and quality of data available for each individual species in both the development of the habitat‐suitability maps and the estimation of the extinction risks. Additionally, the multispecies conservation value can accommodate specific conservation goals, such as preservation of local endemics, making it useful for prioritizing conservation and management actions. This approach provides an estimate of the ecological worth of a site based on habitat characteristics and quantitative models in terms of all the ecological components of a site, rather than a single threatened or endangered species. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Conservation Biology Wiley

A Multispecies Approach to Ecological Valuation and Conservation

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Publisher
Wiley
Copyright
Copyright © 2003 Wiley Subscription Services, Inc., A Wiley Company
ISSN
0888-8892
eISSN
1523-1739
DOI
10.1046/j.1523-1739.2003.00447.x
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Abstract: The conservation of ecosystems focuses on evaluating individual sites or landscapes based on their component species. To produce a map of conservation values, we developed a method to weight habitat‐suitability maps for individual species by species‐specific extinction risks. The value of a particular site reflects the importance and magnitude of the threats facing the component species of the ecological community. We applied this approach to a set of species from the California Gap Analysis Project. The resulting map of multispecies conservation values identified the areas with the best habitat for the species most vulnerable to extinction. These methods are flexible and can accommodate the quantity and quality of data available for each individual species in both the development of the habitat‐suitability maps and the estimation of the extinction risks. Additionally, the multispecies conservation value can accommodate specific conservation goals, such as preservation of local endemics, making it useful for prioritizing conservation and management actions. This approach provides an estimate of the ecological worth of a site based on habitat characteristics and quantitative models in terms of all the ecological components of a site, rather than a single threatened or endangered species.

Journal

Conservation BiologyWiley

Published: Feb 1, 2003

References

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