Lack of information may slow conservation response to amphibian crisis
December 1, 2008
Writing in the December issue of Tropical Conservation Science, Nicolás Urbina-Cardona of UNAM (Mexico) and Conservation International - Colombia argues that overcoming this dearth of information is critical to conserving Neotropical reptiles and amphibians.
"To take action for herpetofaunal conservation it is necessary to initiate and maintain homogeneous and stable nomenclature to avoid species richness overestimation and to be able to generate appropriate legislation for conservation," he writes. "It is necessary to quantify viable population sizes, phylogenetic patterns, home ranges, geographical distributions and population structure of endemics, rare, and disturbance-sensitive species."
Upon identifying what species are endangered, Urbina-Cardona says that scientists need to "establish priorities to evaluate whether current protected areas include those species’ distributions, and whether deforestation is the principle driver of habitat loss."
He adds that local involvement in the establishing of protected areas will be key to the process.
"These selection criteria should be complemented with social participation, including decision makers who promote and understand socioeconomic, ethic, and budget related issues so that conservation areas can be possible at a local level"
Urbina-Cardona, J. N. 2008. Conservation of neotropical herpetofauna: research trends and challenges. Tropical Conservation Science Vol.1 (4):359-375.