USA – Pacific Northwest

Boat at fish weir. Photo © Chris Seufert

Boat at fish weir. Photo © Chris Seufert

Land - Sea Integration

Introduction

Land and sea are connected by flowing water, movements of migratory fish, and many other linkages. But science, conservation, management and planning have often been divided at the boundaries of land, river and sea. This case study demonstrates an approach to integrate across ecosystems to improve management outcomes.

Why Integrate?

Given the historical divisions in science, conservation and management across the coastal zone, efforts to integrate across terrestrial, freshwater, and marine environments could improve the ecological accuracy and the spatial and economic efficiency of biodiversity conservation plans.

  • Ecological accuracy: Many processes, fluxes and connections span the land-sea margin, such as the life histories of species that require physical connectivity and passage between environments, and an ecologically accurate plan accounts for these linkages.
  • Spatial and economic efficiency: Planning for integrated conservation and management across ecosystems could reduce the total area recommended for protection, and it could also reduce the total cost of the planning process and of direct economic impacts on landowners and other stakeholders.
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