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Title

Evaluation of the network of priority feeding areas for scavengers in Spain: from biodiversity conservation to ecosystem services

AuthorsPérez-García, Juan M.; Moleón, Marcos; Botella, Francisco; Carrete, Martina ; Lazcano, Carolina; Moreno-Opo, Rubén; Margalida, Antoni ; Donázar, José A. ; Sánchez-Zapata, José A.
Issue Date2015
Citation27th International Congress for Conservation Biology (2015)
4thEuropean Congress for Conservation Biology (2015)
AbstractPolitical decisions and legal regulations may have important implications for the functioning of ecosystems and the services they provide. Due to the outbreak of the bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) in Europe, a sanitary regulation (EC 1774/2002) forced farmers to remove livestock carcasses from the fieldand transport them to authorized plants for their transformation or incineration. This led to a strong food shortage for vultures and other scavengersof conservation concern, withnegative effects on their populations and the ecosystem services they provide. Moreover, carcass transportation meant a new source of greenhouse gases (GHG) emission. As a result of these environmental costs,new legislation was approved (EC 142/2011) to allow farmers to abandon extensive livestock carcasses in certain areas (priority feeding areas for scavengers, ZPAEN), both in the field (where they die) and at feeding stations. This legislation was incorporated in Spain throughthe Royal Decree 1632/2011, which urgedeveryregion (autonomous community) to design their own ZPAEN.Our aim was to evaluate the potential effects of this new regulation on a) the conservation of endangered scavengers and b) the GHG savings. By means of a GAP analysis, we evaluated the effectiveness of the network of priority feeding areas for the conservation of vultures and other endangered facultative scavengers. Then, we quantified the GHGemissions associated with the transport of extensive livestock carcasses that would be saved after the implementation of the ZPAEN.Our results show that these priority feeding areas for scavengers enhancesboth scavenger conservation and the associated ecosystem services when comparedwith the effects of previous restrictive regulations. However, the regional regulations mustassimilate that obligate scavengers are highly mobile organisms that require large scale planning, so their improvement should focus on incorporating larger areas to the ZPAEN.
DescriptionResumen del trabajo presentado al 27th International Congress for Conservation Biology (ICCB) y al 4th European Congress for Conservation Biology (ECCB), celebrados en Montpellier (Francia) del 2 al 6 de agosto de 2015.
URIhttp://hdl.handle.net/10261/180412
Appears in Collections:(EBD) Comunicaciones congresos
(IREC) Comunicaciones congresos
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