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The Role of Protected Areas in Conserving Endangered Species

January 27, 2019 0 Comment

Protected areas have a wide diversity of legal status and management types and quite variable effectiveness in retaining their biodiversity values (Harcourt et al., 2001). Investigating species coverage in protected areas is a first step for assessing their effectiveness as conservation tools.

For many species, habitat protection requires conservation action at a scale larger than that of single protected areas. This is the case for species with very large spatial requirements exemplified by Endangered African wild Dog, Lycaonpictus, with a home ranges extending beyond 2,000 km2, larger than 95% of protected areas in Africa, (Beamesderfer and Farr, 1997).

For such species, in situ conservation requires establishment of protected areas network, adequately connected through a matrix of favourable habitat, allowing species movement through and persistence in broader landscape.

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Sometimes, habitat protection and direct intervention are required to mitigate threats to species. Ex situ conservation (through captive breeding /artificial propagation) can offer insurance against extinction by providing a source population for future re-introduction or reinforcement of wild populations.

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