Assessing the effectiveness of a national protected area network for carnivore conservation

J. Terraube*, Jasper Van doninck, P. Helle, M. Cabeza

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

27 Citations (Scopus)
5 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

Protected areas (PAs) are essential to prevent further biodiversity loss yet their effectiveness varies largely with governance and external threats. Although methodological advances have permitted assessments of PA effectiveness in mitigating deforestation, we still lack similar studies for the impact of PAs on wildlife populations. Here we use an innovative combination of matching methods and hurdle-mixed models with a large-scale and long-term dataset for Finland’s large carnivore species. We show that the national PA network does not support higher densities than non-protected habitat for 3 of the 4 species investigated. For some species, PA effects interact with region or time, i.e., wolverine densities decreased inside PAs over the study period and lynx densities increased inside eastern PAs. We support the application of matching methods in combination of additional analytical frameworks for deeper understanding of conservation impacts on wildlife populations. These methodological advances are crucial for preparing ambitious PA targets post-2020.

Original languageEnglish
Article number2957
JournalNature communications
Volume11
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2020
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • ITC-CV

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