MPA Science Corner: Code of conduct - MPA network planning - Scaling - Automated detection techniques

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These recent articles on MPA-related science and policy are all open access.

Article:An appeal for a code of conduct for marine conservation”, Marine Policy 81, 411-418 (2017)

Finding: Poor governance and social issues can jeopardize the legitimacy and long-term effectiveness of marine conservation practices, including MPAs. This paper reviews key principles and identifies next steps in developing fair social standards and a related code of conduct for marine conservation.

Article: Integrating conservation and economic objectives in MPA network planning: A case study from New Zealand”, Biological Conservation 210, 136 - 144 (2017)

Finding: New Zealand's existing MPAs provide, on average, 70% less representation of biodiversity features than would be achieved by an MPA network of equivalent area if the latter were designed from the outset using the conservation-planning software Zonation.

Article:How to Achieve Conservation Outcomes at Scale: An Evaluation of Scaling Principles“, Frontiers in Marine Science 3 (2017)

Finding: This study identifies 23 factors that are significantly associated with successful scaling for marine conservation projects. Among the study’s conclusions: for scaling to be successful it must be considered at all stages of a project, and attention must also be paid to methods, marketing, dissemination, and long-term monitoring.

Article:Automated detection and enumeration of marine wildlife using unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) and thermal imagery”, Scientific Reports 7, 45127 (2017)

Finding: Counts of grey seal colonies in Canada using completely automated techniques (unmanned aircraft systems, thermal imagery, and computer vision) resulted in counts that were within 95-98% of human estimates. The study illustrates how such methods can be combined to efficiently collect population data critical to wildlife management.

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