Description of the WG7
Conservation biology aims at the conservation and management of natural ecosystems. Depending on the state of degradation of an ecosystem, conservation biologists can suggest to activate restoration measures. The main objective of this WP is to evaluate the level of conservation of dwelling inside Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) and propose conservation and/or restoration actions. The first objective is in line with the directives of the EU Biodiversity Strategy to 2020 (COM/2011/0244), which calls Member States to map and assess the
state of ecosystems. Once critical situations will be individuated, conservation, management and/or restoration measures will be implemented. Aim of the WP is to propose a standard toolbox for conservation and restoration actions in order to have common protocols and comparable results. The WP will be in strict connection with WG5, WG6 and WG8.
Literature review on MAF conservation and restoration. Tasks: a. Literature review with the aim of individuating the successful conservation actions and restoration protocols and critically evaluate the reasons of success. b. Selection of the most successful protocols; c. Webtool creation for sharing the outcoming information.
Assesment of protection level. Task: a. Review of studies regarding degradation with the aim of quantifying the state of conservation of MAFs. b. Select and individuate the most endangered sites to prioritize interventions. c. Establish criteria selection and measures to be applied. d. Review of the protection enforcements in terms of percentage of protected MAFs and regime of protection.
Restoration protocols. Task: a. Development of a specific conservation action protocol for MPAs and vulnerable zones. b. Protocol will be based on the information gathered in activities 1,2 and 3. c. Dissemination of protocols. Activity 4: Training school of conservation and restoration measures. a. From theory to practice, conservation actions and restoration protocols will be discussed and applied (applying the proposal to different projects) to real cases. b. STSM: offer the opportunity to conduct during a short period of time a practical experience with senior researchers. Monitoring, evaluation and follow-up of the STSM.