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Stellenbosch University (2021)

Assessing the feasibility of assisted colonisation to reduce climate change extinction risk for Western Cape proteaceae

Vanmali, Namita Madhu

Titre : Assessing the feasibility of assisted colonisation to reduce climate change extinction risk for Western Cape proteaceae

Auteur : Vanmali, Namita Madhu

Université de soutenance : Stellenbosch University

Grade : Master of Science (MS) 2021

Résumé partiel
Anthropogenic climate change may be testing certain species’ abilities to adapt via range migration, or natural selection in situ. Particularly vulnerable species have restricted ranges and limited dispersal capabilities – characteristics of many endemic species found in the Cape Floristic Region (CFR). Many have evolved anti-telechory, including several Proteaceae species, and may thus require active conservation interventions to ensure their future persistence in the wild. Assisted Colonisation (AC) is a conservation strategy aimed at reducing species’ climate change-induced extinction risk, but no detailed assessments exist of the feasibility of assisted colonisation in the CFR context. By combining Species Distribution Modelling (SDM) outputs for 191 Proteaceae species under future climate scenarios, with selected species traits and land-use maps, this study developed a hierarchical screening approach to identify potential assisted colonisation candidates in the CFR. Using projections over shorter time periods allowed for more potential assisted colonisation candidates to be identified and using life-history traits in conjunction with spatial projections shifted the prioritisation of some assisted colonisation candidates. Thirty-one potential assisted colonisation candidates were identified and subset into three types : Sustained intervention, Short-term intervention, and Mitigation dependent candidates, indicating different degrees of active intervention. The Mitigation dependent candidate group highlighted the potential for future global emissions reductions to reduce extinction risk for several assisted colonisation candidate species projected to become highly vulnerable after 2040

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Page publiée le 29 mai 2022