Mapping global conservation priorities and habitat vulnerabilities for cave-dwelling bats in a changing world

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2022
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de Oliveira, Hernani Fernandes Magalhães
Hughes, Alice Catherine
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The Science of the total environment. Elsevier. 2022, 843, 156909. ISSN 0048-9697. eISSN 1879-1026. Available under: doi: 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2022.156909
Zusammenfassung

Research and media attention is disproportionately focused on taxa and ecosystems perceived as charismatic, while other equally diverse systems such as caves and subterranean ecosystems are often neglected in biodiversity assessments and prioritisations. Highlighting the urgent need for protection, an especially large fraction of cave endemic species may be undescribed. Yet these more challenging systems are also vulnerable, with karsts for example losing a considerable proportion of their area each year. Bats are keystone to cave ecosystems making them potential surrogates to understand cave diversity patterns and identify conservation priorities. On a global scale, almost half (48 %) of known bat species use caves for parts of their life histories, with 32 % endemic to a single country, and 15 % currently threatened. We combined global analysis of cave bats from the IUCN spatial data with site-specific analysis of 1930 bat caves from 46 countries to develop global priorities for the conservation of the most vulnerable subterranean ecosystems. Globally, 28 % of caves showed high bat diversity and were highly threatened. The highest regional concentration of conservation priority caves was in the Palearctic and tropical regions (except the Afrotropical, which requires more intensive cave data sampling). Our results further highlight the importance of prioritising bat caves by incorporating locally collected data and optimising parameter selection (i.e., appropriate landscape features and threats). Finally, to protect and conserve these ecosystems it is crucial that we use frameworks such as this to identify priorities in species and habitat-level and map vulnerable underground habitats with the highest biodiversity and distinctiveness.

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Fachgebiet (DDC)
570 Biowissenschaften, Biologie
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Bioindicators, Evolutionary distinctiveness, Extinction risks, Island endemism, Subterranean habitats
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ISO 690TANALGO, Krizler C., Hernani Fernandes Magalhães DE OLIVEIRA, Alice Catherine HUGHES, 2022. Mapping global conservation priorities and habitat vulnerabilities for cave-dwelling bats in a changing world. In: The Science of the total environment. Elsevier. 2022, 843, 156909. ISSN 0048-9697. eISSN 1879-1026. Available under: doi: 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2022.156909
BibTex
@article{Tanalgo2022-06-23Mappi-58236,
  year={2022},
  doi={10.1016/j.scitotenv.2022.156909},
  title={Mapping global conservation priorities and habitat vulnerabilities for cave-dwelling bats in a changing world},
  volume={843},
  issn={0048-9697},
  journal={The Science of the total environment},
  author={Tanalgo, Krizler C. and de Oliveira, Hernani Fernandes Magalhães and Hughes, Alice Catherine},
  note={Article Number: 156909}
}
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