Why managing biodiversity at the landscape-scale matters!

Participants at the Strategic Planning for Landscape-scale Biodiversity Conservation Symposium on 11 October 2018 were in general agreement that more needs to be done to improve the use of data to promote biodiversity conservation in planning and development.

This Bat Conservation Trust event aimed to share knowledge and best practice regarding strategic, landscape-scale planning for biodiversity (not just bats). It is now widely recognised that we need to act at a landscape-scale to create ecological networks and fulfil the Lawton vision of more, bigger, better and joined sites for nature conservation.

Speakers ranged from local government, ecological consultancies, developers and conservation groups. David Lowe from Warwickshire County Council talked about how global and UK rates of decline in biodiversity are ‘off the chart’. He estimated that over 360 UK species will be extinct by 2020.

Morgan Taylor, an ecology consultant from Greengage Consulting outlined how corporate social responsibility can be a driver for biodiversity gain in urban habitats and that monitoring is key, not just for successful biodiversity gains but to deliver multiple ecosystem benefits.

Tony Gent from the charity Amphibian and Reptile Conservation (ARC) outlined how landscape-scale biodiversity data was being mapped and modelled in South Midlands and Jersey to help identify and prioritise conservation areas, as well as to better understand the impact of a development on key biodiversity locations.

Tristan Norton from Hampshire County Council pointed out that the bird species around the Solent don’t respect the boundaries of Special Protected Areas (SPAs). He argued that this natural movement of species means we have to think about biodiversity at a larger scale and work in partnership with a wider range of different organisations and groups.

The presentations from the symposium are available online here.


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