Can Nature Parks Save Biodiversity?
As human activities put increasing pressures on natural systems and wildlife to survive, 200 scientists around the world carved up pieces of the puzzle to present a clearer picture of reality and find ways to mitigate the destructive forces at work. Their work, published by Nature’s Advanced Online Publication, examined more than 30 different categories of species, from butterflies to large predators, within protected areas across the tropical regions of the Americas, Africa, and Asia, and concludes that many of the world’s tropical protected areas are struggling to sustain their biodiversity.
The scientists estimated how these species groups had changed in numbers over the past two to three decades, while identifying environmental changes that might threaten the reserves, such as the deforestation advancing rapidly in tropical nations. Calling the tropical forests the biologically richest real estate on the planet, the team found many nature reserves acted like mirrors — partially reflecting the threats and changes in their surrounding landscapes.