The importance of migratory connectivity for global ocean policy

Last modified: 
October 1, 2019 - 2:20pm
Type: Journal Article
Year of publication: 2019
Date published: 09/2019
Authors: Daniel Dunn, Autumn-Lynn Harrison, Corrie Curtice, Sarah DeLand, Ben Donnelly, Ei Fujioka, Eleanor Heywood, Connie Kot, Sarah Poulin, Meredith Whitten, Susanne Åkesson, Amalia Alberini, Ward Appeltans, José Arcos, Helen Bailey, Lisa Ballance, Barbara Block, Hannah Blondin, Andre Boustany, Jorge Brenner, Paulo Catry, Daniel Cejudo, Jesse Cleary, Peter Corkeron, Daniel Costa, Michael Coyne, Guillermo Crespo, Tammy Davies, Maria Dias, Fanny Douvere, Francesco Ferretti, Angela Formia, David Freestone, Ari Friedlaender, Heidrun Frisch-Nwakanma, Christopher Froján, Kristina Gjerde, Lyle Glowka, Brendan Godley, Jacob González-Solís, José Granadeiro, Vikki Gunn, Yuriko Hashimoto, Lucy Hawkes, Graeme Hays, Carolina Hazin, Jorge Jimenez, David Johnson, Paolo Luschi, Sara Maxwell, Catherine McClellan, Michelle Modest, Giuseppe Di Sciara, Alejandro Palacio, Daniel Palacios, Andrea Pauly, Matt Rayner, Alan Rees, Erick Salazar, David Secor, Ana Sequeira, Mark Spalding, Fernando Spina, Sofie Van Parijs, Bryan Wallace, Nuria Varo-Cruz, Melanie Virtue, Henri Weimerskirch, Laurie Wilson, Bill Woodward, Patrick Halpin
Journal title: Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences
Volume: 286
Issue: 1911
Pages: 20191472
ISSN: 0962-8452

The distributions of migratory species in the ocean span local, national and international jurisdictions. Across these ecologically interconnected regions, migratory marine species interact with anthropogenic stressors throughout their lives. Migratory connectivity, the geographical linking of individuals and populations throughout their migratory cycles, influences how spatial and temporal dynamics of stressors affect migratory animals and scale up to influence population abundance, distribution and species persistence. Population declines of many migratory marine species have led to calls for connectivity knowledge, especially insights from animal tracking studies, to be more systematically and synthetically incorporated into decision-making. Inclusion of migratory connectivity in the design of conservation and management measures is critical to ensure they are appropriate for the level of risk associated with various degrees of connectivity. Three mechanisms exist to incorporate migratory connectivity into international marine policy which guides conservation implementation: site-selection criteria, network design criteria and policy recommendations. Here, we review the concept of migratory connectivity and its use in international policy, and describe the Migratory Connectivity in the Ocean system, a migratory connectivity evidence-base for the ocean. We propose that without such collaboration focused on migratory connectivity, efforts to effectively conserve these critical species across jurisdictions will have limited effect.

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