Don’t forget the weather

DPoint #106 (Oct 2018) (high res pdf for printing)_Page_12_Image_0002

Building models for better decisions

Models are basic to good decision making. System models are representations of the dynamics of an ecological system, a conceptual map of how the system works. They enable us to specify our thinking on how the system responds to management. Without them in our decision frame it’s unlikely our choices will be well founded. What’s more, and just as important, without a system model the potential to learn is limited.

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A silvereye amidst the (lantana) thorns. (Photo by Jasmine Zeleny)

To weed or not to weed…

 Impacts of reveg and weed control on urban-sensitive birds Key messages: Birds with varying sensitivities to urban areas interact with habitat restoration differently Reveg provides the greatest benefit for urban-sensitive species, and weed control provides neutral or in some cases negative outcomes Weed control should be implemented in concert with replanting of native vegetation to […]

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Restoring the Brazilian Atlantic Forest

Forest restoration enhances the provision of many ecosystem services, is an important tool for combating climate change and helps protect biodiversity. In a recent issue of Applied Vegetation Science, Leticia Garcia and coauthors (including CEED’s Richard Hobbs) examined restoration outcomes in the Atlantic Forest area in Brazil. They show that simply planting trees is insufficient […]

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Riparian vegetation along Brisbane River. Queensland’s waterways provide over $10 billion annually in economic benefits.

Restoring waterways cost-effectively

Southeast Queensland’s waterways provide over $10 billion annually in economic benefits through drinking water supply, fishing, tourism, and recreation. But these goods and services are under threat from intensive agricultural, urban development and climate change.

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Ecological restoration is complex and expensive. Economists can provide multiple insights on how to make it more effective. (Photo courtesy of Greening Australia)

I’m an economist – I’m here to help

How economics can enhance the success of ecological restoration Key messages: Economic principles, tools and instruments can be applied to a range of factors that affect the success of a restoration project Addressing four key aspects of ecological restoration would enhance their success: (1) assessing social/economic benefits, (2) estimating overall costs, (3) effective prioritisation, and […]

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‘Degraded’, or is it just different?

One of the world’s leading restoration ecologists has questioned the way we use the term ‘degraded’. According to CEED Chief Investigator Professor Richard Hobbs this is far more than simple semantics. How we assess whether a system is degraded has major implications for whether restoration is required. In a paper just published in Restoration Ecology, […]

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The grey-crowned babbler, a long-lived, colonial-nesting, woodland bird, in decline in southeast Australia. (Photo by Doug Robinson)

Learning about past restoration effort

The case of the grey-crowned babbler KEY MESSAGES Understanding the value of restoration requires measuring change through time Measure response variables that are meaningful Counterfactuals are necessary: Compared to what? Many resources are spent on restoring habitat to counter the impacts of land clearing and habitat degradation on wildlife populations. But individual projects involving restoration […]

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A coral nursery in the Florida Keys. Restoration efforts can get incredibly expensive and even then they can be quite risky. (Photo XL Catlin Seaview Survey)

Restoring marine coastal ecosystems

Counting the costs and assessing the feasibility KEY MESSAGES We examined the cost and feasibility of restoration in marine coastal ecosystems The median price was around US$80,000 per hectare, the average price was up at US$1,600,000 per hectare Feasibility ranged from 38% for seagrass, to 65% for coral reefs and saltmarshes Coasts are popular areas […]

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Allocating funds among restoration actions

A major emerging task for biodiversity conservation is to ‘scale-up’ the restoration of degraded land from the local patch to the scale of the landscape (regional). This poses significant challenges for prioritising investments, most notably because: (a) restoring native vegetation involves considerable uncertainty and time lags over at least several decades; and (b) restoration typically involves a range of different potential actions, each with its own costs, time frame and likelihood of success.

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An adult male orangutan in a Kalimantan oil-palm plantation, now an
endangered species. (Photo by Nardiyono)

Prioritising restoration in Kalimantan

Mention Indonesia and images of soaring rainforests and orangutans come to mind. But the reality is quite different. Over 63% of Indonesia’s forest estate is currently deforested or degraded (that’s around 83 million hectares), and many of its iconic species such as the orangutan and proboscis monkeys are endangered. And the deforestation marches on. In 2012 Indonesia broke the record for clearing tropical forest. The choking haze from burning forest and peatland has blanketed South East Asia many times in recent years, and awareness of the economic and health hazards associated with this is growing.

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Turning up the heat on freshwater interactions

Freshwater habitats are critically important for a broad range of animals and plants (see the article, ‘the importance of freshwater habitat’) and they are in trouble. Worldwide these habitats are experiencing declines in biodiversity far greater than those being experienced in other terrestrial and marine ecosystems. New research involving EDG modelling is hoping to help managers identify how this decline might be best dealt with.

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