ICCB 2013 Symposia - Monday & Tuesday
Scientists from around the world will present the latest in conservation research and practice at nearly 50 symposia at ICCB.
- Below is the symposia schedule for Monday and Tuesday - 21 & 22 July. Click here to view symposia scheduled for Wednesday and Thursday.
Note: ICCB starts on Sunday evening 21 July with the opening ceremony, but the main scientific program begins Monday.
The ICCB scientific program also features hundreds of contributed talks and poster and speed-poster presentations.
Click here to download an Excel file sorted by day of the complete schedule of contributed talks, posters and presentations (does not include symposia).
Monday 22 July: 08:00-10:00
- Detecting, Understanding and Deterring Conservation Crime [Part I]
- The U.S. Endangered Species Act at 40: Measuring Success and the Critical Role of Stakeholders
- Despite what you've heard? Conservation success in the Chesapeake Bay [Part I]
- Analysing Social Networks for Conservation Decision-Making
- Mobilizing Inter-disciplinary complex systems approaches for the study and management of conservation conflicts
- Integrating Conservation Research and Practice: Social Processes for a High-Impact Research Agenda
Monday 22 July: 10:30-12:30
- Detecting, Understanding and Deterring Conservation Crime [Part II]
- Integrating Systems, Disciplines and Stakeholders for More Effective Conservation Policies - From Climate Change to Endangered Species Restoration [Part I]
- Despite what you've heard? Conservation success in the Chesapeake Bay [Part II]
- The Impact of Animal Release on Biodiversity and Human Health: Exploring Opportunities to Bridge Conservation and Religion
- Raising the Bar: Large Landscape Conservation Innovations in Canada's Boreal and Australia's Outback
- Urban Wildlife, Conflict Resolution, and Conservation Biology: Why it Matters that we Connect Disciplines and Stakeholders to Engage a Larger Public
- From Plans to Outcomes: Towards an Implementation Strategy for Conservation Planning
Tuesday 23 July: 08:00-10:00
- Detection of aquatic species using environmental DNA: an integrative new approach to inform conservation [Part I]
- Roadless and Low Density-Transportation Networks as Permeable Landscapes and Seascapes [Part I]
- Cross-border conservation in Latin America and the Caribbean Today
- New Directions in Conservation Medicine: Connecting Systems, Disciplines and Stakeholders for Ecological Health in Practice [Part I]
- Conserving the stage: using geophysical units as coarse-filter targets in conservation planning for climate change [Part I]
- Capacity, Constituency and Conservation: An integrated approach to protect near-shore fisheries for people and biodiversity
- The Global Amphibian Conservation Action Plan: Connecting systems, disciplines and stakeholders to save amphibians worldwide [Part I]
- Still 'shooting in the dark'? Policy insights from the frontiers of evidence-based conservation [Part I]
- Starting at the Bottom: Optimizing Conservation Outcomes for Priority Species by Integrating Terrestrial Disciplines with Freshwater Systems
Tuesday 23 July: 10:30-12:30
ICCB Symposia - Monday 22 July
Urban wildlife, conflict resolution and conservation biology: why it matters that we connect disciplines and stakeholders to engage a larger public
Organizer: Hadidian, J., The Humane Society of the United States
How conflicts between people and wild animals are visualized and resolved has increasingly become relevant to conservation biology. How this is done in urbanizing environments may be especially relevant. Urban ecologists confront many of the same issues their colleagues address elsewhere, such as the impact of nonnative species, overabundant native species and the conservation of native biodiversity. The social and political environment in which issues must be addressed is highly complex and through a rich admixture of varying stakeholder interests, intergroup dynamics, and problem framing, can teach us much about dealing with conflicts everywhere. Cities are also where the majority of people now live and from where funding decisions and program policies emanate. It is important, and may be critical, that the urban public recognizes wildlife conservation as a first order concern that begins in their neighborhood and extends well beyond. Urban wildlife conflict resolution represents an innovative and bridging subdiscipline that draws upon theory and practice from a variety of sources to create innovative solutions to problems people experience with wild animals and resolve the social conflicts that can occur over wildlife. This symposium will address some of the important concepts developed in this approach and present case histories that elucidate where the professional practice of urban wildlife conflict resolution stands as an emerging subdiscipline.
Detecting, Understanding and Deterring Conservation Crime
Organizer: Solomon, J., Colorado State University
Conservation criminology is an emerging field that cuts across disciplines and requires the cooperation of individuals in subjects as varied as law enforcement, policy, criminology, natural resource management, conservation biology, psychology, and risk management. Conservation criminology is "the study of environmental risks at the nexus between humans and natural resources that involve issues of crime, compliance and/or social control" (Gibbs et al. 2010). Illicit or non-compliant human behaviors may occur in all ecosystems and range from subsistence illegal resource collection inside protected areas to poaching of megafauna by organized criminal syndicates. Such acts have an enormous impact on ecosystems and yet the study of them is limited, primarily because the topic is extremely sensitive and the victims are voiceless. We propose to highlight recent innovations in detecting, understanding and deterring conservation crimes. Speakers will address issues ranging from novel methodologies for quantifying subsistence-level illegal resource use to technological advances used to deter poaching. The intention of the presentations is to bring conference attendees a synopsis of how conservation crime is currently being studied as well as highlighting future directions for research and the need for an interdisciplinary, collaborative approach that connects across multiple stakeholder groups in an attempt to deter conservation crime.
Raising the bar: Large landscape conservation innovations in Canada's Boreal and Australia's Outback
Organizer: Wells, J., International Boreal Conservation Campaign
The North American Boreal Forest and the Australian Outback share the distinction of being two of the last, very large unfragmented ecological regions left on earth. The intact nature of these regions means that, unlike in most of the world, the opportunity to proactively maintain and conserve large scale functioning ecosystems and biodiversity still exists. These regions are also seen by some as the last frontiers for unbridled natural resource extraction. Efforts to maintain the ecological integrity and biodiversity characteristics of these massively large ecological regions has required innovative new ideas that integrate across widely divergent systems, disciplines, and stakeholders at impressively large scales. The results have raised the bar for large landscape conservation initiatives around the globe. For example, over 526,000 km2 (130 million acres) of protected areas are now in place in Canada's Boreal Forest region and governments in two of the largest Canadian.
Analysing Social Networks for Conservation Decision-making
Organizer: Rhodes, J., The University of Queensland
Integrating social science with ecology to inform conservation is one of the greatest challenges we face as conservation scientists. Characterising social systems as networks of interacting actors provides a powerful tool for achieving this. This symposium will bring together a multidisciplinary panel of speakers to showcase novel approaches for integrating social networks with ecology to inform conservation decision-making. The past two decades have seen an explosion of interest in structured approaches to conservation decision-making (Wilson et al. 2009). However, the vast majority of these tools either fail to consider social processes, or consider them in a highly simplified way. At the same time, analyses of networks of interacting actors, based on tools such as social network theory and game theory, have emerged as important methods for understanding the influence of social processes on natural resource management success (Ostrom 1990, Bodin and Prell 2011). Despite this, it is only recently that conservation biologists have begun to integrate social networks into conservation planning (Bode et al. 2011, Vance-Borland and Holley 2011). By highlighting recent developments in how the analysis of social networks can be incorporated into conservation decision-making, and the benefits of doing so, this symposium will make a significant contribution to the ability of conservation scientists and practitioners to integrate human social processes into biodiversity conservation.
The U.S. Endangered Species Act at 40: Measuring Success and the Critical Role of Stakeholders
Organizer: Greenwald, N., Center for Biological Diversity
This symposium will mark the 40th anniversary of the U.S. Endangered Species Act by evaluating the success of the Act towards saving species from extinction and putting them on the road to recovery, assessing implementation of the Act, and discussing the role of diverse stakeholders in aiding implementation and recovery. Focusing on one of the oldest and strongest laws for protecting biodiversity of any nation, this symposium fits squarely into the theme for this year's meeting, "connecting systems, disciplines, and stakeholders." Under the umbrella of the Act, scientists, policy makers and advocates from government agencies, academia and non-governmental organizations all work towards the conservation of endangered species across the full diversity of ecosystems found in the U.S. and to address the full breadth of threats to species survival from habitat loss, to climate change, to invasive species. The symposium will bring individuals from these diverse backgrounds to present data and perspective on the current state of the Act and the species it protects. Participants will discuss case studies of species recovery efforts, data on implementation of the Act, and results from current efforts to assess the overall success of the Act.
Integrating Systems, Disciplines and Stakeholders for More Effective Conservation Policies - From Climate Change to Endangered Species Restoration
Organizer: Fitzgerald, J., Society for Conservation Biology
In order to conserve biodiversity and to have any chance that SCB will succeed in its mission, policies grounded in and tested by science and practice must be in place to ensure and reward proper management of resources and human actions that affect them. Decision-makers must draw from all relevant sciences and disciplines to form and adapt these rules and must include most or all stakeholders in forming these to ensure sufficient compliance. We are at a crossroads in modern society at which older policies or older enforcement modes are no longer adequate to ensure regional or global conservation, but the roots of reform can be found within our legal and administrative systems so that we need not start from scratch. This symposium will draw from leading experts in climate and earth science, ecological and energy economics, and cutting edge domestic and international law to identify both the roots of reform and the new growth that must be fostered across the legal and governmental systems of the world by using and serving stakeholders, not only as recipients but as drivers.
Despite what you've heard? Conservation success in the Chesapeake Bay
Organizer: Gedan, K., University of Maryland
The Chesapeake Bay is one of the world's largest, most culturally treasured, and most productive estuaries?a scale that challenges and provides opportunities for conservation and management. Recent decades have been hard on Chesapeake Bay ecosystems and the people who depend on them. The wild oyster fishery that once shaped the region's cultural identity has collapsed, a seasonal dead zone plagues the Bay mainstem, and there is heavy dependence on the blue crab fishery. Despite notorious environmental problems, Chesapeake conservation practitioners have rallied a conservation ethic and pursued an ambitious conservation agenda. Participants in this session have advanced that agenda and will discuss the triumphs and pitfalls of managing nutrients, fisheries, and habitats in the Chesapeake Bay. Nutrient management plans for the Chesapeake watershed are some of the strictest in the nation. Fisheries managers are facilitating a shift from wild harvest to bivalve aquaculture and embarking upon one of the largest marine restoration projects ever. Stakeholders from crabbing and farming communities steward conservation activities to preserve the Chesapeake cultural legacy. Finally, the session will include a presentation about the Bay Game, a data-intensive, educational simulation game that incorporates the complex issues of the Bay. In the Chesapeake Bay, people have transcended impressive disciplinary, cultural, and political boundaries to carry out conservation activities.
Mobilizing Inter-disciplinary complex systems approaches for the study and management of conservation conflicts
Organizer: Douglas, L., American Museum of Natural History (AMNH)
Environmental, wildlife or other conservation-related conflicts are complex non-linear phenomena frequently composed of multiple social and environmental drivers. These disputes may be conjoined with, nested in, or surrogates for broader socio-economic struggles between stakeholder groups, making their resolution particularly challenging. By extension, understanding these conflicts frequently requires a departure from the traditional linear and reductionist paradigms that have historically defined our frameworks of understanding, investigating, and managing conservation conflicts. This symposium focuses on applying complexity science and dynamical systems perspectives to conservation-related conflicts. The symposium further aims to illuminate emerging multi-disciplinary methodologies and modeling techniques for their management. Conservation science is situated within a nexus of disparate values, identities, histories, and disciplines. For this reason complex conflicts are unavoidable, and even inherent to conservation. There is therefore a vital need to continually highlight new analytical frameworks, innovations and advances in our collective understanding and approaches to conflict that impinge on conservation's core objectives. This symposium will provide a unique forum for cross-disciplinary learning among practitioners and researchers involved in cutting-edge conservation science and practice applying complex systems approaches to conservation-related conflicts.
From plans to outcomes: towards an implementation strategy for conservation planning
Organizer: Adams, V., Research Institute for the Environment and Livelihoods
The discipline of systematic conservation planning will be 30 years old in 2013. Its achievements around the world have been remarkable, but its connections to conservation outcomes are still too tenuous. Regional-scale conservation planning and local-scale conservation actions do not properly inform one another. One outcome is the 'planning-implementation gap'. Implementation of the best laid plans requires a multidisciplinary approach to understanding complex ecological, political and social systems and improved engagement with diverse stakeholders. The conference theme 'Connecting systems, disciplines, and stakeholders' is at the core of guiding the future research agenda to address the planning-implementation gap. Turning planning effort into lasting actions requires existing lines of thinking to be woven together, and missing elements in implementation strategies identified and filled. Some important elements of an implementation strategy include: -Setting priorities for action in space and time -Scaling down regional plans to local circumstances -Scaling up local actions into networks -Identifying ways of financing actions into the future We envisage that a broad, generic strategy can be identified for any region but differences in detail will emerge between regions. We discuss a generic strategy and present case studies of adaptation of this strategy to diverse planning situations. The case studies also review challenges and successes in moving from plans to outcomes.
Integrating Conservation Research and Practice: Social Processes for a High-Impact Research Agenda
Organizer: Arnold, H., Nature Conservancy of Canada
As the ceaseless urgency to curb the biodiversity crisis meets a battered economy with yet tighter public funding for research, there is a growing need to ensure that conservation research is both relevant to practitioners, and solution-oriented. Whereas practitioners and land managers require research that is applicable to evidence-based and adaptive management, barriers exist to generating and accessing it, leading to a continued and undue reliance on anecdote and unverified opinion. Meanwhile, dedicated researchers may be personally motivated to make meaningful contributions toward solving pressing conservation problems but professional disincentives and funding criteria, often biased against real-world applied research, may discourage them. While individual efforts in the last two decades have made great strides to bridge the gap between conservation research and practice, now is the time to break down the systemic barriers that continue to perpetuate the divide. In this symposium a coalition of academics, funders and practitioners builds on a growing array of success stories and proposes a new way forward, one in which researchers and practitioners are full partners in the systematic co-creation of the research agenda. The proposed symposium is of direct relevance to the conference theme because it brings together multiple stakeholders to seek an integrated solution to a complex and deep-rooted problem that is central to the entire discipline of conservation biology.
The Impact of Animal Release on Biodiversity and Human Health: Exploring Opportunities to Bridge Conservation and Religion
Organizer: Awoyemi, S., SCB Religion and Conservation Biology Working Group
The Buddhist practice of animal merit release is threatening biodiversity, ecological integrity, and human health. The effects of this ongoing practice provides an opportunity for conservation biologists and Buddhist leaders to collaborate in conserving wildlife in Asia and demonstrating true compassion for animals, their habitats, and human health as originally intended through this practice. The focus of this symposium clearly dovetails the ICCB 2013 theme of Connecting Systems, Disciplines, and Stakeholders. This proposed symposium also strategically addresses the central goal of the United Nations (UN) Decade for Biodiversity (2011-2020) which is to re-orient society towards recognizing the value of biodiversity and conserving it.
ICCB Symposia - Tuesday 23 July
Detection of aquatic species using environmental DNA: an integrative new approach to inform conservation
Organizer: Goldberg, C., University of Idaho
Conservation efforts need techniques that are both accurate and effective to be successful. The new field of environmental DNA (eDNA), where aquatic species are detected using DNA found in water bodies, has the potential to exponentially increase the data available on presence of endangered species as well as early detection of invasive species. The detection of eDNA is a novel, integrative method that greatly improves detection sensitivity and cost efficiency over field surveys for biodiversity, with little or no ecological impact. The method requires integrating concepts and approaches from ecology, hydrology, conservation genetics, and wildlife management and has attracted international attention from conservation scientists and practitioners. Application of the eDNA method directly connects scientists with stakeholders as they collaboratively develop eDNA-based monitoring programs. Since eDNA was first successfully demonstrated in 2008, technique development has been rapid. This process has occurred independently across labs, leading to a disparity of methods for eDNA detection and inference. At this critical time in the development of eDNA technologies for conservation, we propose to bring together scientists from universities, government agencies, and non-profit organizations at the cutting-edge of this field to present and discuss their approaches. This sharing of knowledge will increase consensus on best practices and move the field into a more cohesive methodology.
Roadless and Low Density-Transportation Networks as Permeable Landscapes and Seascapes [Part I]
Organizer: DellaSala, D., Geos Institute
A vast network of roads and marine highways crisscrosses the planet, transporting people and goods over global distances with substantial environmental impacts. For instance, the ecological footprint of roads is known to extend up to a kilometer on either side of an individual road (road effect zone) with cumulative effects of dense road networks in some regions impacting up to 15-20% of total surface area (e.g., continental USA). Marine transportation networks and associated ship transport lanes also create migration and other problems for wildlife, including acoustic pollution and collision-related mortality. In contrast, areas with low road densities and/or low-traffic volume (marine and terrestrial) and those with no roads (e.g., roadless areas in the USA, South America, Asia, Africa) are a conservation priority globally because they provide habitat for road-adverse wildlife, have characteristic ecological processes, are relatively resistant to weed invasions, act as strongholds for aquatic species, and provide climatic refugia. In some terrestrial regions (e.g., western Europe), only low-density roads with low traffic volume remain and these areas are building blocks for re-wilding landscapes. This symposium will provide a global synthesis of impacts of vast transportation networks and a region by region and a global synthesis on the importance of intact areas showcasing new intactness and human footprint technologies.
Save the oceans, feed the world: setting marine conservation priorities based on the recovery potential for marine fisheries in data-poor countries
Organizer: Stiles, M., Oceana
Marine fisheries are a critical source of food and income for people in developing countries, yet most countries lack stock assessments and few data are available for decision support. This symposium will explore innovative models for evaluating the state of fisheries and potential for recovery in data-poor countries, with the goal of predicting where marine conservation will be most effective. To apply these models in a specific country, we combine quantitative and qualitative indicators to evaluate the potential for recovery in the ecosystem and human systems contexts. These country comparisons are further informed by lessons learned from previous marine conservation work in prioritization, policy, behavior change and marine protected areas. We identify the tradeoffs of different approaches to prioritization. The symposium discussion will focus on connecting people from diverse backgrounds and disciplines to support continued innovation.
Cross-border conservation in Latin America and the Caribbean Today
Organizer: List, R., Universidad Autonoma Metropolitana
Evidence of changes in the historical patterns of species distribution and phenology is increasing, from earlier flowering times, shifts on dates of bird migration and rapid shifts on the geographic range of vertebrates, to the reduction of ice cover on the Arctic and its yet unknown consequences. When increasing artificial barriers throughout the continent, like highways, wind farms, ship routes and international border infrastructure are considered, the future of the already diminished biodiversity is further reduced by isolating populations and by limiting the resilience to change. With such drastic and widespread changes, the coordination of conservation efforts across political boundaries is critical to increase the resilience of species and ecosystems.
New Directions in Conservation Medicine: Connecting Systems, Disciplines and Stakeholders for Ecological Health in Practice
Organizer: Aguirre, A. Smithsonian-Mason School of Conservation
Species and ecosystems have been threatened by many anthropogenic factors manifested in local and global declines of populations and species. Conservation medicine, an emerging discipline is the result of the long evolution of transdisciplinary thinking within the health and ecological sciences to better understand the complexity within these fields of knowledge. Conservation medicine examines the links among changes in climate, habitat quality, and land use; emergence and re-emergence of infectious agents, parasites and environmental contaminants; and maintenance of biodiversity and ecosystem functions as they sustain the health of plant and animal communities including humans. During the last decade, new tools and institutional initiatives for assessing integrated, ecological health have emerged: landscape epidemiology; disease ecological modeling; web-based analytics; the development of non-invasive physiological and behavioral monitoring techniques; the adaptation of modern molecular biological and biomedical techniques; the design of population level disease monitoring strategies; the creation of ecosystem-based health and sentinel species surveillance; and the adaptation of health monitoring systems for appropriate developing country situations. This symposium addresses these issues with relevant case studies and will challenge the notion that human health is an isolated concern removed from the bounds of biodiversity, ecology and species interactions.
Conserving the stage: using geophysical units as coarse-filter targets in conservation planning for climate change
Organizer: Beier, P., Northern Arizona University
By exploring geophysical units as coarse-filter targets for conservation planning, this symposium connects the abiotic system to the biotic system, and connects the disciplines of geography, geology, climate science, paleoecology, and conservation biology. We have invited diverse stakeholders (advocates for fine-filter approaches and other skeptics) to challenge our approach. Conservation decision makers want to identify lands that will help biodiversity cope with climate change. A geophysical unit (land facet) is a recurring landscape unit defined by topographic and soil attributes. A reserve network that encompasses the diversity of geophysical units should conserve biodiversity and the ecological and evolutionary processes that maintain and generate biodiversity. The appeal of "conserving the stage" derives from fundamental concepts of ecology, and the realization that the fine-filter approach (1 species at a time, relying on complex models of emissions, global circulation, species' climate envelopes, and species' dispersal abilities) is not a practical conservation strategy. But the approach needs more than this common sense appeal if it is to enter the mainstream of science and practice. This symposium (the first on this topic at any professional meeting) will articulate the assumptions, arguments, models, and evidence for the approach, provide examples in conservation planning, and identify gaps in scientific understanding.
Capacity, Constituency and Conservation: An integrated approach to protect near-shore fisheries for people and biodiversity
Organizer: Dewan, A.,
The loss of biodiversity and coral reef habitat to overfishing, along with the collapse of near-shore fisheries and fishing-dependent communities, create a conservation-livelihood challenge of unprecedented scale. Territorial-user rights for fisheries (TURFs) have emerged as potential solution with demonstrated fisheries and conservation benefits. Although TURFs with a no-take protected area have been associated with improvements in fish biomass and coral reef health, the adoption of a new and exclusive fisheries management solution is challenging without strong leadership, appropriate training, science-based management, and effective communication about the benefits for fishers. By bringing together key specialists who are working together to achieve biodiversity conservation and livelihood results, this symposium will create a unique opportunity to showcase the power of a collaborative, yet rigorous, approach for implementing the TURF solution in biodiversity hotspots across the globe. This symposium will also provide a unique and needed contribution to the ICCB, presenting not only the latest science on the ecological and social aspects of TURF adoption but also a training and communications model to ensure lasting success of conservation interventions on the ground. By capitalizing on the interactive format, this symposium will provide a forum for understanding how multi-disciplinary approaches can be applied to other critical conservation challenges.
The Global Amphibian Conservation Action Plan: Connecting systems, disciplines and stakeholders to save amphibians worldwide
Organizer: Bishop, P., Amphibian Survival Alliance
The IUCN amphibian conservation action plan is a unique example of a multi-disciplinary response to the global amphibian crisis. Published in 2007, the action plan details an ambitious framework to stem the rapid losses of amphibians worldwide (Gascon et al. 2007). This plan detailed a need for $400m investment over 4 years and some highly motivated stakeholders from around the world have been able to leverage some initial funding to implement real conservation actions that cross disciplines and benefit amphibians world-wide. The Amphibian Survival Alliance (ASA), launched in June 2011, acts as a global partnership for amphibian conservation and is working to mobilize a motivated and effective consortium of organizations to stem the rapid losses of amphibian populations and species worldwide (Bishop et al. 2012) . The purpose of this session is to convene some of the implementers of best cutting-edge examples of amphibian conservation actions ranging from land acquisition to species management, law enforcement and policy, education and capacity building actions that cross a variety of disciplines outlined in the Amphibian Conservation Action Plan. We hope to engage the wider community of conservation practice in each of these disciplines to help stimulate conversations and ideas to effectively implement this ambitious plan.
Still 'shooting in the dark'? Policy insights from the frontiers of evidence-based conservation
Organizer: Glew, L., World Wildlife Fund
Evidence-based policy and practice has emerged as a major focus of biodiversity conservation research in the past decade. Scholars and practitioners increasingly recognize that without empirical evidence, decisions on where and how to conserve biodiversity constitute a 'shot in the dark'. The nascent evidence base emerging from quasi-experimental impact evaluation, which allow scholars to make causal inferences about the ecological and social impacts of conservation interventions, has generated important insights for conservation practice and overturned long-held conventional wisdom. The evidence derived from these pioneering impact evaluation studies remains limited in scope, however, with considerable mismatch between the insights generated and the needs of policymakers. Addressing this disparity requires future generations of evaluative studies to advance six methodological 'frontiers': diversifying the range of outcome metrics; documenting variation in impact; linking interventions to impact; exploring trade-offs and synergies between outcomes; comparing the effectiveness of interventions; and translating evidence into policy and practice. This session brings together schools and practitioners to explore these six frontiers across a range of interventions, biomes and sociopolitical contexts to highlight the potential and the limits of impact evaluation in conservation, in order to catalyze policy-relevant research and further advance conservation policy.
Starting at the Bottom: Optimizing Conservation Outcomes for Priority Species by Integrating Terrestrial Disciplines with Freshwater Systems
Organizer: Patricio, H., SCB Freshwater Working Group and FISHBIO
From elephants, to grizzly bears, to rare primates, there is one thing such "high conservation priority" species all require for survival and persistence. They all rely on freshwater systems, just as all humans do. It is the mission of the Society for Conservation Biology to reduce loss of the world's most threatened species, and a great deal of recent research shows that freshwater species are declining at a much higher rate than any other group. Despite this reality, the representation of freshwater research at past ICCB meetings has been quite limited. How can we, as Conservation Biologists, make the links between freshwater systems and persistence of the "high priority" species many of us are working to conserve? How can we integrate freshwater and terrestrial research to stem the widespread loss of biodiversity? This symposium will unite the disengaged disciplines of terrestrial and aquatic sciences. We will provide participants with tools to enhance their research, conservation planning, and management strategies; ultimately increasing the success of their conservation efforts for any organism or ecosystem they specialize in. Participants can move forward with this framework to communicate the importance of freshwater conservation by relating it to the conservation of ecosystem services and species that tend to draw more media and policy attention, engaging a wider group of stakeholders.
Integrating Marine Mammal Conservation: 21st Century Challenges
Organizer: Cornick, L., Alaska Pacific University
Marine mammal conservation is unique because many species are difficult to study due to their pelagic nature, resulting in significant data gaps. As apex predators they control prey populations, but their foraging behavior is constrained by their physiology and by prey distribution and abundance. All marine mammals are protected in the US under the Marine Mammal Protection Act, and some species have additional protection under the Endangered Species Act. However, few species exist only in the US, so conservation plans often must include international cooperation, including First Nations tribes. Marine mammals also frequently interact with industry via competition, by-catch, and critical habitat designation. Many marine mammal species are consumed by subsistence users, and internationally through commercial and scientific whaling exemptions to the IWC. Thus, marine mammal conservation must take a multidisciplinary approach (oceanography, fisheries biology), and integrate priorities of diverse stakeholders (policy makers, industry, subsistence users). The theme of this symposium is to bring together interdisciplinary and stakeholder interests to consider challenges, solutions, and best practices for advancing an integrated approach to marine mammal conservation. We propose a three-part program, with the first symposium taking place at the ICCB, the second at the Marine Mammal Biology Conference, and the final symposium at the Third International Marine Conservation Congress.