Safeguarding Biodiversity: The Role and Challenges of Protected Areas

Protected areas slow declines unevenly across the tetrapod tree of life

Protected areas (PAs) play a crucial role in slowing down the loss of terrestrial biodiversity. A study analyzing data from around the world found that vertebrate populations decline much slower within protected areas compared to similar sites without protection. The effectiveness of PAs varied among different animal classes, with amphibians and birds experiencing the most benefits. However, the positive impact of PAs was influenced by factors such as land cover changes and climate warming. Effective national governance consistently strengthened the protective effects of PAs. This study emphasizes the importance of targeted protection, good governance, and managing landscapes effectively to safeguard biodiversity.

Justin Nowakowski, A., Watling, J.I., Murray, A. et al. Protected areas slow declines unevenly across the tetrapod tree of life. Nature (2023). https://doi.org/10.1038/s41586-023-06562-y


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