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Conservation of Birds in Fragmented Landscapes Requires Protected Areas

Citation

Timmers, Robert et al. (2021), Conservation of Birds in Fragmented Landscapes Requires Protected Areas, Dryad, Dataset, https://doi.org/10.5061/dryad.wpzgmsbn9

Abstract

For successful conservation of biodiversity, it is vital to know whether protected areas in increasingly fragmented landscapes effectively conserve species. However, how large habitat fragments must be and what level of protection is required to sustain species, remains poorly known. We compiled a global dataset on almost 2000 bird species in 741 forest fragments varying in size and protection status, and show that protection is associated with higher bird occurrence, especially for threatened species. Protection becomes increasingly important with increasing size of forest fragments. For forest fragments >50 ha our results show that strict protection (IUCN cat. I-IV) is strongly associated with higher bird occurrences, whereas fragments should be at least 175 ha to observe a positive effect of moderate protection (cat. V-VI). This meta-analysis quantifies the importance of fragment size, protection status, and their interaction for the conservation of bird species communities, and stresses that protection should not be limited to large pristine areas.

Funding

Nederlandse Organisatie voor Wetenschappelijk Onderzoek, Award: Personal Vidi grant to M.B. Soons

Nederlandse Organisatie voor Wetenschappelijk Onderzoek, Award: 17431

Prince Bernhard Chair for International Nature Conservation

Prince Bernhard Chair for International Nature Conservation