NCEAS Project 2290

Developing and testing methods for classifying species conservation status and estimating risk

  • Mark Burgman
  • Sandy J. Andelman


ActivityDatesFurther Information
Graduate Student1st July 1999—31st March 2001Participant List  
Working Group1st—7th August 1999Participant List  
Postdoctoral Fellow29th September 1999—30th June 2000Participant List  
Undergraduate Intern1st February—30th April 2000Participant List  
Working Group24th—29th February 2000Participant List  
Working Group17th—21st April 2000Participant List  
Working Group6th—12th November 2000Participant List  
Working Group21st—28th July 2001Participant List  
Working Group11th—17th February 2002Participant List  

Members Only Area

Abstract
Decisions about species conservation status have critical implications for allocation of public and private funding, land use planning decisions, and regulatory actions. Currently, a broad range of methods is used to classify species conservation status at a variety of geographic scales (e.g., local, national, international). Different methods produce very different results, yet there is no rationale or benchmark for judging their adequacy or appropriateness. Existing systems also are incomplete because they lack rules that allow decisions to be made when the data are uncertain. No systematic testing of any such system has been undertaken. In this project, we will synthesize and evaluate existing protocols for classifying species conservation status applied in the United States, Australia, and internationally. We will measure their performance in three ways: first, by comparing the classifications resulting from individual protocols with assessments of extinction risk from detailed population and metapopulation studies for specific species; second, by comparing classifications with simulations of hypothetical species for which ¿true¿ underlying dynamic processes are known; and third, by comparing classifications with the conservation outcomes for a large number of existing species, for which some populations have gone extinct. The synthesis of these lines of evidence will allow us to evaluate critically the current techniques, and to recommend new approaches and testing procedures.

TypeProducts of NCEAS Research
Book Chapter Akçakaya, H. Resit; Regan, Helen M. 2001. Population models: Metapopulations. Edited by Pastorok, R. A.; Bartell, S. M.; Ferson, S.; Ginzburg, L. R.. Ecological Modeling in Risk Assessment: Chemical Effects on Populations, Ecosystems and Landscapes. Lewis Publishers. Boca Raton, FL. Pages 83-95.
Journal Article Bartell, S. M.; Pastorok, R. A.; Akçakaya, H. Resit; Regan, Helen M.; Ferson, Scott; Mackay, C. 2003. Realism and relevance of ecological models used in chemical risk assessment. Human and Ecological Risk Assessment. Vol: 9. Pages 907-938.
Presentations Burgman, Mark. 2000. The science and psychology of environmental risk assessment. BHP, Office for Health.
Journal Article Burgman, Mark; Possingham, Hugh P.; Lynch, A. Jasmyn J.; Keith, David A.; McCarthy, Michael A.; Hopper, S. D.; Drury, W. L.; Passioura, J. A.; DeFries, Ruth S. 2001. A method for setting the size of plant conservation target areas. Conservation Biology. Vol: 15. Pages 603-616.
Presentations Burgman, Mark. 2001. Uncertainty and risk. Society for Conservation Biology Conference.
Journal Article Burgman, Mark. 2002. Are listed threatened plant species actually at risk?. Australian Journal of Botany. Vol: 50. Pages 1-13.
Presentations Burgman, Mark. 2002. Extinctions: Gaps in science or gaps in nature?. University of California, Berkeley. Berkeley, Ca.
Presentations Burgman, Mark. 2002. Practical applications: Critical habitat on the ground. Canadian Wildlife Service Workshop.
Presentations Burgman, Mark. 2002. Uncertainty in habitat models: Epistemic and vague quantities. Archbold Biological Station.
Journal Article Burgman, Mark; Fox, Charles. 2003. Bias in species range estimates from minimum convex polygons: Implications for conservation and options for improved planning. Animal Conservation. Vol: 6. Pages 19-28.
Presentations Burgman, Mark. 2003. GM regulation and scientific inference: Can science be trusted?. San Diego State University. San Diego, CA.
Presentations Burgman, Mark. 2003. Uncertainty in habitat models: Epistemic and vague quantities. University of Wisconsin, Madison. Madison, WI.
Journal Article Burgman, Mark. 2004. Evaluating methods for assessing extinction risk. Acta Oecologica-International Journal of Ecology. Vol: 26. Pages 65-66.
Data Set Burgman, Mark; Regan, Tracey. 2006. Main causes for discrepancies in species classifications. (Abstract) (Online version)
Journal Article Elith, Jane; Burgman, Mark; Regan, Helen M. 2002. Mapping epistemic uncertainties and vague concepts in predictions of species distribution. Ecological Modelling. Vol: 157. Pages 313-329.
Journal Article Keith, David A.; McCarthy, Michael A.; Regan, Helen M.; Regan, Tracey; Bowles, Christy; Drill, Claire; Craig, Cory; Pellow, Belinda; Burgman, Mark; Master, Larry; Ruckelshaus, Mary; Mackenzie, Berin; Andelman, Sandy J.; Wade, Paul. 2004. Protocols for listing threatened species can forecast extinction. Ecology Letters. Vol: 7. Pages 1101-1108.
Journal Article Keith, David A.; Burgman, Mark. 2004. The Lazarus effect: Can the dynamics of extinct species lists tell us anything about the status of biodiversity?. Biological Conservation. Vol: 117(1). Pages 41-48.
Journal Article Lindenmayer, D. B.; McCarthy, Michael A. 2001. The spatial distribution of non-native plant invaders in a pine-eucalypt landscape mosaic in south-eastern Australia. Biological Conservation. Vol: 102. Pages 77-87.
Journal Article Maunder, Mark N. 2004. Population viability analysis based on combining Bayesian, integrated, and hierarchical analyses. Acta Oecologica-International Journal of Ecology. Vol: 26. Pages 85-94.
Report or White Paper McCarthy, Michael A. 2000. Report on activities while a post-doc at NCEAS. (Online version)
Journal Article McCarthy, Michael A.; Lindenmayer, D. B.; Possingham, Hugh P. 2001. Assessing spatial PVA models of arboreal marsupials using significance tests and Bayesian statistics. Biological Conservation. Vol: 98. Pages 191-200.
Journal Article McCarthy, Michael A.; Thompson, Colin. 2001. Expected minimum population size as a measure of threat. Animal Conservation. Vol: 4. Pages 351-355.
Presentations McCarthy, Michael A.; Andelman, Sandy J.; Possingham, Hugh P. 2001. Relative risks in PVA: Accuracy in the face of uncertainty. Society for Conservation Biology. Hilo, HI.
Presentations McCarthy, Michael A.; Andelman, Sandy J.; Possingham, Hugh P. 2001. Reliability of relative predictions in population viability analysis. Ecological Society of America. Madison, WI.
Journal Article McCarthy, Michael A.; Possingham, Hugh P.; Day, Jon; Tyre, Andrew. 2001. Testing the accuracy of population viability analysis. Conservation Biology. Vol: 15. Pages 1030-1038.
Journal Article McCarthy, Michael A.; Possingham, Hugh P.; Gill, A. M. 2001. Using stochastic dynamic programming to determine optimal fire management for Banksia ornata. Journal of Applied Ecology. Vol: 38. Pages 585-592.
Presentations McCarthy, Michael A. 2002. Extinction models for work and play. School of Botany Seminar, University of Melbourne, Australia. Melbourne, Australia.
Journal Article McCarthy, Michael A.; Andelman, Sandy J.; Possingham, Hugh P. 2003. Reliability of relative predictions in population viability analysis. Conservation Biology. Vol: 17(4). Pages 982-989.
Journal Article McCarthy, Michael A.; Keith, David A.; Tietjen, Justine; Burgman, Mark; Maunder, Mark N.; Master, Larry; Brook, Barry W.; Mace, Georgina; Possingham, Hugh P.; Medellin, Rodrigo A.; Andelman, Sandy J.; Regan, Helen M.; Regan, Tracey; Ruckelshaus, Mary. 2004. Comparing predictions of extinction risk using models and subjective judgement. Acta Oecologica-International Journal of Ecology. Vol: 26. Pages 67-74.
Journal Article O'Grady, J. J.; Burgman, Mark; Keith, David A.; Master, Larry; Andelman, Sandy J.; Brook, Barry W.; Hammerson, Geoffrey A.; Regan, Tracey; Frankham, R. 2004. Correlations among extinction risks assessed by different systems of threatened species categorization. Conservation Biology. Vol: 18. Pages 1624-1635.
Journal Article Parris, Kirsten; McCarthy, Michael A. 2001. Identifying effects of toe clipping on anuran return rates: The importance of statistical power. Amphibia-Reptilia. Vol: 22. Pages 275-289.
Journal Article Pastorok, R. A.; Akçakaya, H. Resit; Regan, Helen M.; Ferson, Scott; Bartell, S. M. 2003. Role of ecological modeling in risk assessment. Human and Ecological Risk Assessment. Vol: 9(4). Pages 939-972.
Book Chapter Possingham, Hugh P.; Lindenmayer, D. B.; McCarthy, Michael A. 2001. Population viability analysis. Edited by Levin, S.. Encyclopedia of Biodiversity. Academic Press. San Diego, CA. Pages 831-843.
Journal Article Possingham, Hugh P.; Andelman, Sandy J.; Burgman, Mark; Medellin, Rodrigo A.; Master, Larry; Keith, David A. 2002. Limits to the use of threatened species lists. Trends in Ecology & Evolution. Vol: 17. Pages 503-507.
Presentations Regan, Helen M. 2001. Challenges in risk assessment: Using population models for management in an uncertain world, December 2001. Ecology Department, San Diego State University. San Diego, CA.
Presentations Regan, Helen M.; Andelman, Sandy J.; McCarthy, Michael A.; Burgman, Mark. 2001. How precautionary are we? The impact of uncertainty on threatened species classifications, July 2001. Abstract in Society for Conservation Biology. 15th Annual Meeting, Volume of Abstracts. Hilo, Hawaii.
Book Chapter Regan, Helen M. 2001. Population models: Individual-based. Edited by Pastorok, R. A.; Bartell, S. M.; Ferson, S.; Ginzburg, L. R.. Ecological Modeling in Risk Assessment: Chemical Effects on Populations, Ecosystems and Landscapes. Lewis Publishers. Boca Raton, FL. Pages 65-82.
Journal Article Regan, Helen M.; Hope, B. K.; Ferson, Scott. 2002. Analysis and portrayal of uncertainty in a food-web exposure model. Human and Ecological Risk Assessment. Vol: 8(7). Pages 1757-1777.
Journal Article Regan, Helen M.; Colyvan, Mark; Burgman, Mark. 2002. A taxonomy and treatment of uncertainty for ecology and conservation biology. Ecological Applications. Vol: 12. Pages 618-628.
Journal Article Regan, Helen M.; Sample, B. E.; Ferson, Scott. 2002. Comparison of deterministic and probabilistic calculation of ecological soil screening levels. Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry. Vol: 21(4). Pages 882-890.
Presentations Regan, Helen M.; Auld, T. D.; Keith, David A.; Burgman, Mark. 2002. Using population models for conservation management of an endangered Australian plant, Grevillea caleyi. International Conference for Botanic Gardens. Science for Plant Conservation. Dublin.
Journal Article Regan, Helen M.; Auld, T. D.; Keith, David A.; Burgman, Mark. 2003. The effects of fire and predators on the long-term persistence of an endangered shrub, Grevillea caleyi. Biological Conservation. Vol: 109. Pages 73-83.
Journal Article Regan, Helen M.; Akçakaya, H. Resit; Ferson, Scott; Root, K. V.; Carroll, S.; Ginzburg, Lev. 2003. Treatments of uncertainty and variability in ecological risk assessment of single-species populations. Human and Ecological Risk Assessment. Vol: 9. Pages 889-906.
Book Chapter Regan, Helen M.; Auld, T. D. 2004. Australian shrub Grevillea caleyi: Recovery through management of fire and predation. Edited by Akcakaya, H. R.; Burgman, M. A.; Kindvall, O.; Wood, C. C.; Sjogren-Gulve, P.; Hatfield, J.; McCarthy, M.. Species Conservation and Management: Case Studies. Oxford University Press. Oxford. Pages 23-35.
Journal Article Regan, Helen M.; Ferson, Scott; Berleant, D. 2004. Equivalence of methods for uncertainty propagation of real-valued random variables. International Journal of Approximate Reasoning. Vol: 36. Pages 1-30.
Presentations Regan, Tracey; Keith, David A.; Regan, Helen M.; Tozer, M. 2002. A population viability analysis for a long lived perennial: Xanthorrhoea resinifera. An International Conference for Botanic Gardens. Science for Plant Conservation. Dublin.
Journal Article Regan, Tracey; Master, Larry; Hammerson, Geoffrey A. 2004. Capturing expert knowledge for threatened species assessments: A case study using NatureServe conservation status ranks. Acta Oecologica-International Journal of Ecology. Vol: 26. Pages 95-107.
Journal Article Regan, Tracey; Burgman, Mark; McCarthy, Michael A. 2005. The consistency of extinction risk classification protocols . Conservation Biology. Vol: 19. Pages 1969-1977.
Journal Article Taylor, R. J.; Regan, Tracey; Regan, Helen M.; Burgman, Mark; Bonham, K. 2003. Impacts of plantation development, harvesting schedules and rotation lengths on the rare snail Tasmaphena lamproides in northwest Tasmania: A population viability analysis. Forest Ecology and Management. Vol: 175. Pages 455-466.
Journal Article Tyre, Andrew; Tenhumberg, B.; McCarthy, Michael A.; Possingham, Hugh P. 2000. Swapping space for time and unfair tests of ecological models. Austral Ecology. Vol: 25. Pages 327-331.