Using insights from animal behaviour and behavioural ecology to inform marine conservation initiatives

Brooker, Rohan M., Feeney, William E., White, James R., Manassa, Rachel P., Johansen, Jacob L., and Dixson, Danielle L. (2016) Using insights from animal behaviour and behavioural ecology to inform marine conservation initiatives. Animal Behaviour, 120. pp. 211-221.

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Abstract

The impacts of human activities on the natural world are becoming increasingly apparent, with rapid development and exploitation occurring at the expense of habitat quality and biodiversity. Declines are especially concerning in the oceans, which hold intrinsic value due to their biological uniqueness as well as their substantial sociological and economic importance. Here, we review the literature and investigate whether incorporation of knowledge from the fields of animal behaviour and behavioural ecology may improve the effectiveness of conservation initiatives in marine systems. In particular, we consider (1) how knowledge of larval behaviour and ecology may be used to inform the design of marine protected areas, (2) how protecting species that hold specific ecological niches may be of particular importance for maximizing the preservation of biodiversity, (3) how current harvesting techniques may be inadvertently skewing the behavioural phenotypes of stock populations and whether changes to current practices may lessen this skew and reinforce population persistence, and (4) how understanding the behavioural and physiological responses of species to a changing environment may provide essential insights into areas of particular vulnerability for prioritized conservation attention. The complex nature of conservation programmes inherently results in interdisciplinary responses, and the incorporation of knowledge from the fields of animal behaviour and behavioural ecology may increase our ability to stem the loss of biodiversity in marine environments.

Item ID: 45991
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1095-8282
Keywords: behaviour; conservation; coral reef; fisheries; larval dispersal; marine protected area; personality; physiological tolerance; specialization
Additional Information:

Special Issue: Conservation Behaviour

Funders: University of Delaware (UD), Alfred P. Sloan Foundation (APSF), Australian-American Fullbright Commission (AAFC), University of Queensland (UQ)
Date Deposited: 06 Oct 2016 22:08
FoR Codes: 06 BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES > 0602 Ecology > 060201 Behavioural Ecology @ 100%
SEO Codes: 97 EXPANDING KNOWLEDGE > 970106 Expanding Knowledge in the Biological Sciences @ 100%
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