Integrated management for effective biodiversity conservation in anthropogenic pond landscapes
Biodiversity conservation in Europe is increasingly directed towards anthropogenic landscapes in which biodiversity largely depends on human interference. Maintaining high levels of biodiversity in such landscapes is a major challenge since the majority of ecosystems is subjected to multiple human demands. Freshwater ecosystems are hotspots of biodiversity and provide vital ecosystem services. Yet, they belong to the most threatened ecosystems on earth. Large pond complexes with high densities of shallow interconnected ponds occur in virtually all biogeographical regions. In Europe, such ecosystems are largely of anthropogenic origin and have historically been used for the production of freshwater fish. Although these fish pond systems are essentially cultural landscapes, they have become important surrogate habitats for species of which the natural habitat has been lost.
Using empirical data from an elaborate ecological study, I explore the association of aquatic biodiversity with management, and combine these findings with a cost-benefit assessment. Based on the results, I develop a framework for optimizing costs and benefits in nature conservation at larger spatial scales. I will demonstrate that an integrated management approach at a regional spatial scale is needed for effective and sustainable biodiversity conservation in anthropogenic landscapes.
Host: Robert Arlinghaus