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Title: Pollinators, plants and people : a transdisciplinary study of rare species conservation
Author: Dalton, Naomi Jane
ISNI:       0000 0004 5917 4910
Awarding Body: University of Bristol
Current Institution: University of Bristol
Date of Award: 2015
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Translocation is widely used to counter the fragmentation and decline of populations of species at risk, in order to enhance their survival prospects. Additionally, translocation is used in ecological restoration to introduce taxa conferring strong positive influence, with the potential to recreate communities and reinstate functional roles. Conservation of species by translocation is considered high risk and high cost; therefore ecologists need to understand how success can be maximised. In this thesis, I test the community level impacts of a rare plant and evaluate the effectiveness of single-species conservation for bottom-up restoration. To do this I study the effect a rare plant species, Sium latifolium, has on pollinator communities and find a strong local effect, but detect no population level change. I conclude that the addition of a single plant species is ineffective at providing population change. For evaluation of conservation strategies for pollinators, population level impact must be tested for, rather than assuming that they mirror the local effect. I then explore options for improving the success of species translocation, adopting methodologies from population genetics and social sciences. I test whether low genetic diversity limits the success of S. latifolium translocations, predicting that introduction survival correlates with diversity of the donor natural population. I reject this hypothesis and conclude instead that, for S. latifolium, ecological conditions determine initial success of introductions. Much experience for this resides with practitioners, therefore I use social network analysis to quantify communication between people conserving S. latifolium. I test whether a small scale network intervention (organising a meeting) can create new ties and improve knowledgeexchange through the network.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available