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Volume 1, June

Conservation, Volume 1, Issue 1 (March 2021) – 5 articles

Cover Story (view full-size image): Habitat modification is a major factor in the decline of reptile populations. This requires knowledge of population ecology of reptiles in both disturbed and pristine habitats. We observed an ontogenetic structural niche pattern in the green lizard (Lacerta bilineata), which was likely due to intraspecific competition avoidance, competition interference and cannibalism. The persistence of the same patterns across years demonstrates a temporal stability of the ontogenetic structural niche pattern. View this paper
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Article
How Threatened Is Scincella huanrenensis? An Update on Threats and Trends
Conservation 2021, 1(1), 58-72; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/conservation1010005 - 25 Mar 2021
Viewed by 663
Abstract
It is important to understand the dynamics of population size to accurately assess threats and implement conservation activities when required. However, inaccurate estimates are harming both the threat estimation process, and the resulting conservation actions. Here, we address the extinction threats to Scincella [...] Read more.
It is important to understand the dynamics of population size to accurately assess threats and implement conservation activities when required. However, inaccurate estimates are harming both the threat estimation process, and the resulting conservation actions. Here, we address the extinction threats to Scincella huanrenensis, a species described in the People’s Republic of China, but also occurring on the Korean peninsula. Estimating the threats to the species is not an easy task due to its unknown population status in the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea. Here we analysed the literature to acquire the known presence point for the species, along with datapoints originating from opportunistic field surveys, and employed habitat suitability models to estimate the range of the species. We then followed the categories and criteria of the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species to assess the extinction risk of the species. We found the species not to be fitting the threatened category at the global scale based on the range size, the only category for which enough data was available. We recommend the status of the species on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species to be updated as it is now listed as critically endangered (CR), a listing fitting a national assessment for the People’s Republic (PR) of China. While this species is possibly less threatened than currently listed, this is not a genuine improvement, and specific conservation aspects should not be neglected due to its specialisation to medium to high elevation habitat. Full article
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Article
Comparison between Demand and Supply of Some Ecosystem Services in National Parks: A Spatial Analysis Conducted Using Italian Case Studies
Conservation 2021, 1(1), 36-57; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/conservation1010004 - 05 Mar 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 774
Abstract
In recent decades, modeling approaches of ecosystem services (ES) have been used extensively at the international level, providing useful tools during the decision-making process by integrating both physical and economic information, thus improving its management. The relationship between supply and demand may impact [...] Read more.
In recent decades, modeling approaches of ecosystem services (ES) have been used extensively at the international level, providing useful tools during the decision-making process by integrating both physical and economic information, thus improving its management. The relationship between supply and demand may impact social welfare: for example, a deficit in ES could negatively influence demand (either potential or effective). For this reason, the relational study between supply and demand is necessary for the sustainable management of natural resources; particularly since the demand for some ES must be fulfilled not only on a local scale but also globally (as in the case of regulatory ES). This paper proposes an ES analysis framework that links the flow of services (supply) generated by the interaction between natural, human and social capital with consumption (demand) connected to potential beneficiaries. Specifically, we analyze three ES: Forage production, regulation of local climate (PM10), and carbon sequestration in three national parks (Aspromonte National Park, Circeo National Park, and Appennino Tosco Emiliano National Park). The use of synthetic (biophysical) indicators, on a spatial basis, made it possible to quantify the supply and demand of specific catchments with the aim of accounting for the surplus/deficit through the calculation of the ES supply and demand ratio (ESDR). In fact, sustainable land management requires a balance between supply and demand in relation to the different needs of the stakeholders and local community. The relationship between supply and demand of ES can help identify resource use trade-offs, thus rendering the achievement of management and protection objectives more efficient. Lastly, through the use of monetary coefficients, it was possible to calculate the benefits of increasing the awareness of public decision-makers of ES’s value and the importance of implementing integrated strategies for environmental protection and enhancement. Full article
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Article
Does Traditional Agroforestry a Sustainable Production System in Bangladesh? An Analysis of Socioeconomic and Ecological Perspectives
Conservation 2021, 1(1), 21-35; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/conservation1010003 - 03 Mar 2021
Viewed by 572
Abstract
In the tropics, products and services provided by the traditional agroforestry systems (TAS) support the basic needs and promote the livelihood of millions of rural people. However, the outcomes and mitigation of TAS, in particular, the social and environmental issues are not systematically [...] Read more.
In the tropics, products and services provided by the traditional agroforestry systems (TAS) support the basic needs and promote the livelihood of millions of rural people. However, the outcomes and mitigation of TAS, in particular, the social and environmental issues are not systematically addressed. Thus, the objective of the study was to assess the economic, social and environmental outcomes of two important TAS in Bangladesh. This study reports results on prospective analyses using the Date palm and Jackfruit-based TAS practiced in the Jashore and Mymensingh districts of Bangladesh. The results revealed that the TAS enhanced farm productivity and the benefit–cost ratio of both systems were much higher than the general agricultural practices in Bangladesh. The TAS also improved resilience of rural farmers through more efficient water utilization, enhancing soil fertility, improving microclimate, controlling pests and diseases, and diversifying products. At the same time, the farmers’ problems were neglected due to the absence of farmers’ platforms, and also tradeoffs may arise; thus, the social aspects of the TAS farmers had not developed equally. Therefore, the study would recommend minimizing the tradeoffs through enhancing the conservation strategies at farmers’ levels to make the TAS more viable and sustainable land-use practices. Full article
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Editorial
Conservation: A New Open Access Journal for Rapid Dissemination of the Transdisciplinary Dimensions of Biodiversity Conservation
Conservation 2021, 1(1), 17-20; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/conservation1010002 - 16 Feb 2021
Viewed by 626
Abstract
We are pleased to launch the new peer-reviewed open access journal, Conservation, published by MDPI (Multidisciplinary Digital Publishing Institute), which offers an exciting new opportunity to publish comprehensive reviews, original research articles, communications, case reports, letters, commentaries, and other perspectives related to [...] Read more.
We are pleased to launch the new peer-reviewed open access journal, Conservation, published by MDPI (Multidisciplinary Digital Publishing Institute), which offers an exciting new opportunity to publish comprehensive reviews, original research articles, communications, case reports, letters, commentaries, and other perspectives related to the biological, sociological, ethical, economic, methodological, and other transdisciplinary dimensions of conservation [...] Full article
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Article
Ontogenetic Habitat Use and Density of the Green Lizard (Lacerta bilineata) in Contrasted Landscapes in France and Italy
Conservation 2021, 1(1), 1-16; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/conservation1010001 - 09 Feb 2021
Viewed by 698
Abstract
Habitat modification is a major factor in the decline of reptile populations. The degree of the decline has been shown to be directly related to the intensity of habitat modification. Farming practices and urbanization are just two of the factors involved indicating that [...] Read more.
Habitat modification is a major factor in the decline of reptile populations. The degree of the decline has been shown to be directly related to the intensity of habitat modification. Farming practices and urbanization are just two of the factors involved indicating that the development of practices that minimize or cancel anthropogenic impacts is urgently needed to prevent further declines. This requires knowledge of population ecology of reptiles in both disturbed and pristine habitats. In this paper, we describe aspects of green lizard (Lacerta bilineata) population ecology in a forest–pasture relatively pristine mosaic habitat in central Italy and a fragmented habitat in western France. In Italy, habitat niche overlap was very high between males and females but very low between males and juveniles. For male and female abundances, general linear models showed that the adult abundances increased with the increase of Rubus bushes, whereas juvenile abundance increased with the increase of Spartium bushes. Contingency table analysis showed that juveniles were also much more frequently observed in grasslands than adults of either sexes. The observed ontogenetic structural niche pattern was likely due to intraspecific competition avoidance, competition interference, and cannibalism. The persistence of the same patterns across years demonstrates a temporal stability of the ontogenetic structural niche pattern. Over the length of the study period, population densities were stable in the Italian population, but densities were much higher by around five times in the hedgerow in the fragmented habitat in France. In the hedgerow, monthly lizard presence was uneven, with the greatest number of sightings in June and July. Overall, our study provided no support for the notion that lizard abundance/density should be lower in modified compared to unmodified habitats, and clearly revealed that a careful management of the hedgerows is crucial for the conservation of this lizard species in agro-forest ecosystems. Full article
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