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      Factors affecting susceptibility of farms to crop raiding by African elephants: using a predictive model to mitigate conflict : Mitigating crop raiding by African elephants

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      Journal of Applied Ecology

      Wiley-Blackwell

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          The need for evidence-based conservation.

          Much of current conservation practice is based upon anecdote and myth rather than upon the systematic appraisal of the evidence, including experience of others who have tackled the same problem. We suggest that this is a major problem for conservationists and requires a rethinking of the manner in which conservation operates. There is an urgent need for mechanisms that review available information and make recommendations to practitioners. We suggest a format for web-based databases that could provide the required information in accessible form.
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            The future of biodiversity.

            Recent extinction rates are 100 to 1000 times their pre-human levels in well-known, but taxonomically diverse groups from widely different environments. If all species currently deemed "threatened" become extinct in the next century, then future extinction rates will be 10 times recent rates. Some threatened species will survive the century, but many species not now threatened will succumb. Regions rich in species found only within them (endemics) dominate the global patterns of extinction. Although new technology provides details of habitat losses, estimates of future extinctions are hampered by our limited knowledge of which areas are rich in endemics.
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              Conservation conflicts across Africa.

              There is increasing evidence that areas of outstanding conservation importance may coincide with dense human settlement or impact. We tested the generality of these findings using 1 degree-resolution data for sub-Saharan Africa. We find that human population density is positively correlated with species richness of birds, mammals, snakes, and amphibians. This association holds for widespread, narrowly endemic, and threatened species and looks set to persist in the face of foreseeable population growth. Our results contradict earlier expectations of low conflict based on the idea that species richness decreases and human impact increases with primary productivity. We find that across Africa, both variables instead exhibit unimodal relationships with productivity. Modifying priority-setting to take account of human density shows that, at this scale, conflicts between conservation and development are not easily avoided, because many densely inhabited grid cells contain species found nowhere else.
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                Author and article information

                Journal
                Journal of Applied Ecology
                Wiley-Blackwell
                00218901
                December 2005
                December 2005
                : 42
                : 6
                : 1175-1182
                Article
                10.1111/j.1365-2664.2005.01091.x
                © 2005

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