The trajectory of dispersal research in conservation biology. Systematic review

Don A. Driscoll, Sam C. Banks, Philip S. Barton, Karen Ikin, Pia Lentini, David B. Lindenmayer, Annabel L. Smith, Laurence E. Berry, Emma L. Burns, Amanda Edworthy, Maldwyn J. Evans, Rebecca Gibson, Rob Heinsohn, Brett Howland, Geoff Kay, Nicola Munro, Ben C. Scheele, Ingrid Stirnemann, Dejan Stojanovic, Nici Sweaney & 2 others Nelida R. Villaseñor, Martin J. Westgate

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Abstract

Dispersal knowledge is essential for conservation management, and demand is growing. But are we accumulating dispersal knowledge at a pace that can meet the demand? To answer this question we tested for changes in dispersal data collection and use over time. Our systematic review of 655 conservation-related publications compared five topics: climate change, habitat restoration, population viability analysis, land planning (systematic conservation planning) and invasive species. We analysed temporal changes in the: (i) questions asked by dispersal-related research; (ii) methods used to study dispersal; (iii) the quality of dispersal data; (iv) extent that dispersal knowledge is lacking, and; (v) likely consequences of limited dispersal knowledge. Research questions have changed little over time; the same problems examined in the 1990s are still being addressed. The most common methods used to study dispersal were occupancy data, expert opinion and modelling, which often provided indirect, low quality information about dispersal. Although use of genetics for estimating dispersal has increased, new ecological and genetic methods for measuring dispersal are not yet widely adopted. Almost half of the papers identified knowledge gaps related to dispersal. Limited dispersal knowledge often made it impossible to discover ecological processes or compromised conservation outcomes. The quality of dispersal data used in climate change research has increased since the 1990s. In comparison, restoration ecology inadequately addresses large-scale process, whilst the gap between knowledge accumulation and growth in applications may be increasing in land planning. To overcome apparent stagnation in collection and use of dispersal knowledge, researchers need to: (i) improve the quality of available data using new approaches; (ii) understand the complementarities of different methods and; (iii) define the value of different kinds of dispersal information for supporting management decisions. Ambitious, multi-disciplinary research programs studying many species are critical for advancing dispersal research. Copyright:

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere95053
Pages (from-to)1-18
Number of pages18
JournalPLoS One
Volume9
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 17 Apr 2014
Externally publishedYes

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systematic review
trajectories
Conservation
Trajectories
Biological Sciences
Research
Climate Change
Planning
Climate change
Restoration
planning
Introduced Species
Information Management
Expert Testimony
Ecology
climate change
Ecosystem
information management
Research Personnel
ecological restoration

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Driscoll, D. A., Banks, S. C., Barton, P. S., Ikin, K., Lentini, P., Lindenmayer, D. B., ... Westgate, M. J. (2014). The trajectory of dispersal research in conservation biology. Systematic review. PLoS One, 9(4), 1-18. [e95053]. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0095053
Driscoll, Don A. ; Banks, Sam C. ; Barton, Philip S. ; Ikin, Karen ; Lentini, Pia ; Lindenmayer, David B. ; Smith, Annabel L. ; Berry, Laurence E. ; Burns, Emma L. ; Edworthy, Amanda ; Evans, Maldwyn J. ; Gibson, Rebecca ; Heinsohn, Rob ; Howland, Brett ; Kay, Geoff ; Munro, Nicola ; Scheele, Ben C. ; Stirnemann, Ingrid ; Stojanovic, Dejan ; Sweaney, Nici ; Villaseñor, Nelida R. ; Westgate, Martin J. / The trajectory of dispersal research in conservation biology. Systematic review. In: PLoS One. 2014 ; Vol. 9, No. 4. pp. 1-18.
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abstract = "Dispersal knowledge is essential for conservation management, and demand is growing. But are we accumulating dispersal knowledge at a pace that can meet the demand? To answer this question we tested for changes in dispersal data collection and use over time. Our systematic review of 655 conservation-related publications compared five topics: climate change, habitat restoration, population viability analysis, land planning (systematic conservation planning) and invasive species. We analysed temporal changes in the: (i) questions asked by dispersal-related research; (ii) methods used to study dispersal; (iii) the quality of dispersal data; (iv) extent that dispersal knowledge is lacking, and; (v) likely consequences of limited dispersal knowledge. Research questions have changed little over time; the same problems examined in the 1990s are still being addressed. The most common methods used to study dispersal were occupancy data, expert opinion and modelling, which often provided indirect, low quality information about dispersal. Although use of genetics for estimating dispersal has increased, new ecological and genetic methods for measuring dispersal are not yet widely adopted. Almost half of the papers identified knowledge gaps related to dispersal. Limited dispersal knowledge often made it impossible to discover ecological processes or compromised conservation outcomes. The quality of dispersal data used in climate change research has increased since the 1990s. In comparison, restoration ecology inadequately addresses large-scale process, whilst the gap between knowledge accumulation and growth in applications may be increasing in land planning. To overcome apparent stagnation in collection and use of dispersal knowledge, researchers need to: (i) improve the quality of available data using new approaches; (ii) understand the complementarities of different methods and; (iii) define the value of different kinds of dispersal information for supporting management decisions. Ambitious, multi-disciplinary research programs studying many species are critical for advancing dispersal research. Copyright:",
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Driscoll, DA, Banks, SC, Barton, PS, Ikin, K, Lentini, P, Lindenmayer, DB, Smith, AL, Berry, LE, Burns, EL, Edworthy, A, Evans, MJ, Gibson, R, Heinsohn, R, Howland, B, Kay, G, Munro, N, Scheele, BC, Stirnemann, I, Stojanovic, D, Sweaney, N, Villaseñor, NR & Westgate, MJ 2014, 'The trajectory of dispersal research in conservation biology. Systematic review', PLoS One, vol. 9, no. 4, e95053, pp. 1-18. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0095053

The trajectory of dispersal research in conservation biology. Systematic review. / Driscoll, Don A.; Banks, Sam C.; Barton, Philip S.; Ikin, Karen; Lentini, Pia; Lindenmayer, David B.; Smith, Annabel L.; Berry, Laurence E.; Burns, Emma L.; Edworthy, Amanda; Evans, Maldwyn J.; Gibson, Rebecca; Heinsohn, Rob; Howland, Brett; Kay, Geoff; Munro, Nicola; Scheele, Ben C.; Stirnemann, Ingrid; Stojanovic, Dejan; Sweaney, Nici; Villaseñor, Nelida R.; Westgate, Martin J.

In: PLoS One, Vol. 9, No. 4, e95053, 17.04.2014, p. 1-18.

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articleResearchpeer-review

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AU - Lindenmayer, David B.

AU - Smith, Annabel L.

AU - Berry, Laurence E.

AU - Burns, Emma L.

AU - Edworthy, Amanda

AU - Evans, Maldwyn J.

AU - Gibson, Rebecca

AU - Heinsohn, Rob

AU - Howland, Brett

AU - Kay, Geoff

AU - Munro, Nicola

AU - Scheele, Ben C.

AU - Stirnemann, Ingrid

AU - Stojanovic, Dejan

AU - Sweaney, Nici

AU - Villaseñor, Nelida R.

AU - Westgate, Martin J.

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N2 - Dispersal knowledge is essential for conservation management, and demand is growing. But are we accumulating dispersal knowledge at a pace that can meet the demand? To answer this question we tested for changes in dispersal data collection and use over time. Our systematic review of 655 conservation-related publications compared five topics: climate change, habitat restoration, population viability analysis, land planning (systematic conservation planning) and invasive species. We analysed temporal changes in the: (i) questions asked by dispersal-related research; (ii) methods used to study dispersal; (iii) the quality of dispersal data; (iv) extent that dispersal knowledge is lacking, and; (v) likely consequences of limited dispersal knowledge. Research questions have changed little over time; the same problems examined in the 1990s are still being addressed. The most common methods used to study dispersal were occupancy data, expert opinion and modelling, which often provided indirect, low quality information about dispersal. Although use of genetics for estimating dispersal has increased, new ecological and genetic methods for measuring dispersal are not yet widely adopted. Almost half of the papers identified knowledge gaps related to dispersal. Limited dispersal knowledge often made it impossible to discover ecological processes or compromised conservation outcomes. The quality of dispersal data used in climate change research has increased since the 1990s. In comparison, restoration ecology inadequately addresses large-scale process, whilst the gap between knowledge accumulation and growth in applications may be increasing in land planning. To overcome apparent stagnation in collection and use of dispersal knowledge, researchers need to: (i) improve the quality of available data using new approaches; (ii) understand the complementarities of different methods and; (iii) define the value of different kinds of dispersal information for supporting management decisions. Ambitious, multi-disciplinary research programs studying many species are critical for advancing dispersal research. Copyright:

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Driscoll DA, Banks SC, Barton PS, Ikin K, Lentini P, Lindenmayer DB et al. The trajectory of dispersal research in conservation biology. Systematic review. PLoS One. 2014 Apr 17;9(4):1-18. e95053. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0095053