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      Abundance of red-listed species in infrastructure habitats – ”responsibility species” as a priority-setting tool for transportation agencies´ conservation action

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      Nature Conservation

      Pensoft Publishers

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          Abstract

          Road and railroad verges may contribute to nature conservation by providing habitat for many species, but due to limited resources, there is a need to select the most important road and railroad stretches for adapted management. We explore the responsibility species concept as a tool for the Swedish Transport Administration to make this selection. We propose lists of candidate responsibility species based on relative abundance of conservation priority species in the vicinity of roads and railroads, respectively. Abundance data were derived from crowd-sourced species observations. Species with ≥20% of observations in infrastructure habitats were included as candidate responsibility species. For roads 32 species were included in the list, for railroads seven species, with an overlap of three species between the lists. We analyzed habitat and management requirements of the listed species to try identifying functional groups. Most of the species require open or semi-open habitats, mainly dry grassland or heathland on sandy or limy soil, un-sprayed crop fields, or solitary trees. Host plants or substrates include broom (genus Genista), patches of bare soil, and sun exposed wood. Conservation actions prescribed for the species include, e.g., late or irregular mowing, removal of the field layer, planting of host species, protecting and providing particular substrates, and special protection of certain sites. We argue that road and railroad managers are particularly well suited to conduct most of these actions. We consider the responsibility species concept to be a useful tool for transportation agencies to set priorities for adapted verge management, and the current method to be effective in identifying a first list of candidate species. We discuss the possibility of also identifying responsibility habitats or general management measures based on the results.

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              Evaluating citizen-based presence data for bird monitoring

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                Author and article information

                Journal
                Nature Conservation
                NC
                Pensoft Publishers
                1314-3301
                1314-6947
                July 28 2015
                July 28 2015
                : 11
                : 143-158
                Article
                10.3897/natureconservation.11.4433
                © 2015

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