Age is a better indicator of biodiversity for road verges than surrounding landscape

In their recently published article, Alistair Auffret and Evelina Lindgren show how historical maps can be a useful tool to identify which road verges can best support grassland habitats. Here the authors provide a summary of their work Road verges are by now quite well known to provide valuable habitat for grassland species if they are managed appropriately (Phillips et al., 2019; Vanneste et al., … Continue reading Age is a better indicator of biodiversity for road verges than surrounding landscape

Strategies for global rangeland stewardship: the equilibrium-non-equilibrium debate

The rangeland equilibrium-non-equilibrium debate produced several important advances in our understanding of rangeland systems. But, in their recent Review, Briske et al. ask if, collectively, these advances are still insufficient to inform the stewardship strategies necessary to sustain global rangelands? Here they provide a summary of their work. The rangeland equilibrium-non-equilibrium debate of the late 20th Century questioned the appropriate ecological model governing the function … Continue reading Strategies for global rangeland stewardship: the equilibrium-non-equilibrium debate

Camera traps reveal hidden treasures of the rainforest

In their new research, Mattia Bessone and colleagues demonstrate how camera trap distance sampling can be used to develop conservation strategies and protect threatened species. The impact humans are exerting on the planet is accelerating the loss of biodiversity, with animal species disappearing at such unprecedented rate that scientists have labelled the current era ‘Earth’s sixth mass extinction’. To preserve the remnants of wildlife we … Continue reading Camera traps reveal hidden treasures of the rainforest

Why bats matter when it comes to pollination

In their recently published article, Tremlett et al. call for greater management focus for wild bat pollinator populations due to the ecosystem services they provide for valuable crops. Here they share a video of bat feeding in action and explain a little more about their work. *Update March 2020. The corresponding article to this video features as the Editor’s Choice for issue 57:03. Read Associate … Continue reading Why bats matter when it comes to pollination

eDNA snapshots of invasion, infection and extinction from a freshwater crayfish tragedy

For the first time, a devastating crayfish plague outbreak has been monitored from the onset to crayfish extinction using eDNA methodology. David A. Strand and colleagues surveyed a watercourse over three years and discovered a remarkable correlation between eDNA fluctuations and host-pathogen dynamics. Noble crayfish (Astacus astacus) are macroinvertebrates that can be found in both lotic and lentic freshwater systems across most of Europe. Previously … Continue reading eDNA snapshots of invasion, infection and extinction from a freshwater crayfish tragedy

Why quantifying riverine ecosystem services matters

Dalal Hanna, aquatic and landscape ecologist, talks about her article reviewing riverine ecosystem service quantification. This paper was on the 2018 list of highly commended papers for this year’s Southwood Prize early career researcher award. An additional video about Dalal’s research is available here. Read the full article, A review of riverine ecosystem service quantification: research gaps and recommendations in issue 55:3 of Journal of … Continue reading Why quantifying riverine ecosystem services matters

Volunteering time matters for improving amphibian conservation

Salamander bucket brigades represent grassroots volunteer efforts to reduce road mortality of amphibians. Simulations by Sean Sterrett and colleagues found that efforts to move outbound metamorphs are more influential than inbound adults. Find out more about their citizen science efforts. As the last signs of winter diminish; air temperatures rise, icy cover on ponds melts and spring rains begin to warm soils, amphibians emerge from forests … Continue reading Volunteering time matters for improving amphibian conservation

U.S. policy-based management improves grassland bird nest survival – although finer-scale habitat has superior predictive ability

In a recent study, Justin Shew and colleagues found nest survival improved with policy-based management and establishing native grasses but conclude finer-scale details often have superior predictive ability from a multi-scale perspective. Read more about their findings here. A video summary of their work is also available. Grassland and farmland bird populations have been declining around the world and these declines are primarily attributed to … Continue reading U.S. policy-based management improves grassland bird nest survival – although finer-scale habitat has superior predictive ability

Benthos longevity matters …

Long-lived species take longer to recover from the effects of bottom trawling by commercial fisheries according to recent research from Hiddink et al. Watch this video from PROJECT BENTHIS to discover more about the importance of longevity and benthic animal traits. Introduction by Associate Editor, Verena Trenkel. Bottom trawling by commercial fisheries affects not only the target species — typically fish and shellfish — but … Continue reading Benthos longevity matters …

Defining and delivering resilient ecological networks in England

Nick Isaac et al.’s new Policy Direction, Defining and delivering resilient ecological networks: nature conservation in England is available as an Accepted Article from today (Thursday 21st June). Read Nick’s comments on the development of this adaptive management framework in this post and watch a video here. The UK Government’s 25 Year Environment Plan (henceforth 25YEP) for England is an exciting opportunity to reframe the direction of nature conservation … Continue reading Defining and delivering resilient ecological networks in England