Functional connectivity within conservation networks : delineating corridors for African elephants

Show simple item record Roever, Carrie Lynn Van Aarde, Rudi J. Leggett, K. 2013-05-20T08:53:08Z 2013-05-20T08:53:08Z 2013-01
dc.description.abstract Managing multiple parks, reserves, and conservation areas collectively as conservation networks is a recent, yet growing trend. But in order for these networks to be ecologically viable, the functional connectivity of the landscape must be ensured. We assessed the connectivity between six African savanna elephant populations in southern Africa to test whether existing conservation networks were functioning and to identify other areas that could benefit from being managed as conservation networks. We used resource selection function models to create an index of habitat selection by males and female elephants. We employed this habitat use index as a resistance surface, and applied circuit theory to assess connectivity between adjacent elephant populations within six clusters of protected areas across southern Africa. Circuit theory current flow maps predicted a high likelihood of connectivity in the central portion of our study area (i.e. between the Chobe, Kafue, Luangwa, and Zambezi cluster). Main factors limiting connectivity across the study area were high human density in the east and a lack of surface water in the west. These factors effectively isolate elephants in the Etosha cluster in Namibia and Niassa clusters in Mozambique from the central region. Our models further identified two clusters where elephants might benefit from being managed as part of a conservation network, 1) northern Zambia and Malawi and 2) northern Mozambique. We conclude that using habitat selection and circuit theory models to identify conservation networks is a data-based method that can be applied to other focal species to identify and conserve functional connectivity. en
dc.description.librarian hb2013 en
dc.description.librarian ab2013
dc.description.sponsorship The Conservation Foundation Zambia, Conservation International’s southern Africa’s Wildlife Programme, Conservation Lower Zambezi, the International Fund for Animal Welfare, the Mozal Community Development Trust, the National Research Foundation, the National Postcode Lottery of the Netherlands, the Peace Parks Foundation, the US Fish and Wildlife Services, the University of Pretoria, the World Wildlife Fund (SARPO; Mozambique; SA), the Walt Disney Grant Foundation, and the Wildlifewins Lottery for several years of research funding to RJ van Aarde. en
dc.description.uri locate/biocon en
dc.identifier.citation Roever, CL, Van Aarde, RJ & Leggett, K 2013, 'Functional connectivity within conservation networks : delineating corridors for African elephants', Biological Conservation, vol. 157, no. 1, pp. 128-135. en
dc.identifier.issn 0006-3207 (print)
dc.identifier.issn 1873-2917 (online)
dc.identifier.other 10.1016/j.biocon.2012.06.025
dc.language.iso en en
dc.publisher Elsevier en
dc.rights © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved. Notice : this is the author’s version of a work that was accepted for publication in Biological Conservation. Changes resulting from the publishing process, such as peer review, editing, corrections, structural formatting, and other quality control mechanisms may not be reflected in this document. Changes may have been made to this work since it was submitted for publication. A definitive version was subsequently published in Biological Conservation, vol.157, no. 1, 2013. DOI : 10.1016/j.biocon.2012.06.025. en
dc.subject Circuit theory en
dc.subject Corridor en
dc.subject Habitat selection en
dc.subject Loxodonta africana en
dc.subject Resource selection function en
dc.subject.lcsh African elephant en
dc.subject.lcsh Conservation biology en
dc.title Functional connectivity within conservation networks : delineating corridors for African elephants en
dc.type Postprint Article en

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