Cover image for Freshwater ecoregions of North America : a conservation assessment
Freshwater ecoregions of North America : a conservation assessment
Abell, Robin A.
Publication Information:
Washington, D.C. : Island Press, [2000]

Physical Description:
xxii, 319 pages : illustrations, color maps ; 28 cm
General Note:
"World Wildlife Fund--United States."
Added Author:
Added Corporate Author:
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
QH77.N56 F69 2000 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks-Oversize Non-Circ

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North America's freshwater habitats and the extraordinary biodiversity they contain are facing unprecedented threats from a range of sources, including flow alteration, habitat fragmentation, introduced species, and overall land use changes. With nearly every freshwater system suffering from some degree of degradation and conservation resources limited, there is an urgent and practical need to set priorities.As an initial step in identifying those areas where protective and restorative measures should be implemented first, World Wildlife Fund-US assembled a team of leading scientists to conduct a conservation assessment of freshwater ecoregions. Freshwater Ecoregions of North Americapresents that assessment and outlines measures that must be taken to conserve, and in many cases restore, native biodiversity. The book: identifies freshwater ecoregions that support globally outstanding biological diversity assesses the types and immediacy of threats to North American ecoregions identifies gaps in information that hamper an accurate evaluation of biodiversity provides a broad-scale framework for conservation activitiesIn addition, it offers appendixes that provide detailed descriptions of methodologies, raw scores and statistical analysis of results, and an integrated biological distinctiveness and conservation status index. Also included are 21 full-color maps.Freshwater Ecoregions of North Americais an authoritative reference on a subject of vital importance, and will be an essential tool for scientists, conservation professionals, students, and anyone interested in the conservation of North America's freshwater systems.

Reviews 1

Choice Review

A comprehensive scientific evaluation of North American freshwater ecoregions conducted by the World Wildlife Fund--US, this assessment of freshwater habitats and biodiversity identifies the biological distinctiveness and conservation status of 76 watershed drainage ecoregions in Canada, the US, and Mexico. A team of experts examined ecoregion boundaries, identified losses and important threats to freshwater taxa, and considered priority actions where protection and restoration measures should be implemented. The results are presented in an impressive array of full-color maps, tables, and matrixes that assign biodiversity conservation values. Extensive appendixes contain information on methodologies used, data and scores on species richness and number of endemics, statistical analyses, and ecoregion descriptions. Short essays (16) providing additional information on freshwater conservation topics are interspersed throughout. An excellent frame of reference for action to accelerate efforts in conservation planning and programs to protect and restore the continent's freshwater ecosystems. Strongly recommended for all libraries and readership levels. Especially valuable for professional resource managers, politicians, environmentalists, and the conservation-minded public. M. J. Zwolinski; University of Arizona

Table of Contents

List of Special Essays
List of Figures
List of Tables
Chapter 1 Introduction
Assessment Overview
Structure of the Book
The Challenge
Chapter 2 Approach
Delineation of Ecoregions and Geographic Scope of the Study
Assignment of Major Habitat Types
Biological Distinctniveness Index (BDI)-Overview
Conservation Status-Overview
Integrating Biological Distinctiveness and Conservation Status
3 Biological Distinctiveness of North American Ecoregions
Species Richness
Rare Ecological or Evolutionary Phenomena
Rare Habitat Type
Synthesis of Biological Distinctiveness Data
4 Conservation Status of North American Ecoregions
Snapshot Conservation Status
Conservation Snapshot Criteria
Threat Assessment
Final Conservation Status
Additional Conservation Status Data
5 Setting the Conservation Agenda: Integrating Biological Distinctiveness and Conservation Status
6 Recommendations
North America's Golbal Responsibilities for Biodiversity Conservation
Targets Requiring Urgent Action
7 Site-Specific Conservation
Additional Site Selection Tools
Appendix A Methods for Assessing the Biological Distinctiveness of Freshwater Ecoregions
Appendix B Methods for Assessing the Conservation Status of Freshwater Ecoregions
Appendix C Iological Distinctiveness Data and Scores
Appendix D Conservation Status Assesment and Scores
Appendix E Statistical Analysis of Biological Distinctiveness and Conservation Status Data
Appendix F Integration Matrices for the Eight Major Habitat Types
Appendix G Ecoregion Descriptions
Appendix H Conservation Partner Contact Information
Literature Cited and Consulted