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A COMPARISON OF TAXONOMIC DISTINCTNESS VERSUS RICHNESS AS CRITERIA FOR SETTING CONSERVATION PRIORITIES FOR NORTH AMERICAN BIRDS. (R825311)
Polasky, S., B. Csuti, C. Vossler, AND S. Meyers. A COMPARISON OF TAXONOMIC DISTINCTNESS VERSUS RICHNESS AS CRITERIA FOR SETTING CONSERVATION PRIORITIES FOR NORTH AMERICAN BIRDS. (R825311). ECOLOGY. Elsevier Science Ltd, New York, NY, 97(1):99-105, (2001).
In choosing sites for a conservation reserve network, representation of the greatest number of species in the sites selected is a common objective. This approach implicitly assumes that all species have equal conservation value. An alternative objective is to represent the greatest genetic diversity in selected sites. This approach gives greater weight to species that are more genetically distinct. Such species tend to contain more unique genetic material, which would be lost if such species became extinct. In this paper, we calculate a diversity measure for a given set of species based on the branch length of the phylogenetic tree for the set. We use genetic distances between bird species in 147 genera based on the results of DNA hybridization research. Distribution information for bird species in the US comes from the Breeding Bird Survey. We compare resulting conservation reserve networks when the objective is the number of genera represented versus the diversity of genera represented. We find that the different objectives produce notably similar results.
Record Details:Record Type: DOCUMENT (JOURNAL/PEER REVIEWED JOURNAL)
Organization:U.S. ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY
OFFICE OF RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT
NATIONAL CENTER FOR ENVIRONMENTAL RESEARCH