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Study Finds Disparity in Land Protection


A new study of the earth’s 13 biomes compares the location of parks and other protected lands to the extent of habitat loss and finds that some of the most altered biomes are also the least protected. The study also found the opposite: that some of the least altered biomes are the best protected. In the forthcoming issue of Ecology Letters, Hoekstra, Boucher, Ricketts and Roberts suggest that more conservation activities should be focused in the neglected biomes.

The study found that temperate grasslands, like the Great Plains, are the most poorly protected compared to the amount of habitat loss, while temperate conifer forests, like those in the Northwest U.S., are the best protected even though the level of development there is relatively low. Neglected biomes include some of the most biologically distinctive, species-rich ecosystems on Earth, as well as the last home of many imperiled species.

Lynne Miller | alfa
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