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A question of scale – from nature reserves to landscape-scale conservation

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Pages
81 – 83

Published
1 September 16

Authors
Jennifer Smart

DOI
10.18194/ws.00041

Correspondence
Jennifer Smart

RSPB Centre for Conservation Science, The Lodge, Sandy, Bedfordshire, UK, SG19 2DL

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A series of chance encounters with some waderologists in the 1990s resulted, for me, in a career focused on the conservation of lowland breeding waders. Since then, I have become increasingly convinced that landscape-scale conservation is the only way to secure their long term future but, to do this, we need an understanding of the mechanisms driving patterns of occupancy, abundance and demography. These days, there are only enough waders to do this sort of mechanistic research in nature reserves.

I work in the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds (RSPB) Centre for Conservation Science (http://www.rspb.org.uk/forprofessionals/science), and for over a decade, I have been doing this sort of research in close partnership with Jenny Gill at the University of East Anglia through PhDs and government-funded research.

In this article, I want to briefly describe the main things we have learnt from detailed studies on reserves and how we are starting to scale up our thinking to a landscape scale.