- Habitats are areas which contain the resources and conditions to support wildlife
- Wildlife contribute to the stability of ecosystems
- Ecosystems are areas where plants, animals and other organisms work together to form life.
- Habitat fragmentation occurs when a large expanse of habitat is transformed into a number of smaller areas.
- Habitat fragmentation and loss affect wildlife negatively
The Issue: Habitat loss and fragmentation reduce habitat area size, quality, and breeding grounds. Isolation created by fragmentation prevent wildlife from moving causing inbreeding and depletion of resources. This increases mortality rates.
Humans play a role in fragmentation. As human populations increase, resource demands increase in turn forcing us to use more land. Development of lands cause habitats to become smaller and more isolated.
Not all species are threatened by fragmentation. Species which do not move far away or maintain small habitat circles are often unaffected. This is also true of some plants.
Mitigation: Land managers can make informed decisions to manage habitats while supporting communities. Urban greenspace can reduce fragmentation.
- Protect: protect existing natural land spaces.
- Wildlife corridors: trips of land connecting habitats
- Land acquisition: Government and privately protected lands for habitat conservation
- Restoration: converting previously developed land back to its natural state
- Zoning: addition of wildlife into local development plans
- Buffer Zones: areas created to reduce the impact of localities on wildlife habitats.