Ecological indicators of access and access management : a wildlife perspective
Harding, Brandie L.
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There is growing concern that human access into areas of wildlife habitat and the management of that access has become one of the most significant issues in sustaining wildlife populations worldwide. Although access management is recommended throughout primary wildlife research and provincial land management plans as a means of wildlife management, limited research has been conducted on measuring the status of access or on access management strategies. Based on a review of the literature on resource management plans and provincial management strategies, this thesis identifies and describes fifteen potential ecological indicators for measuring and monitoring access and access management. Five key findings are summarized from this review. (1) Meaning and implementation of the term `access management' remains vague and ambiguous. (2) Measures of human access are often tied to large mammal management and studies. (3) Access management is a big question, encompassing cumulative impacts, and when viewed from a systems approach should consider ecological indicators across multiple levels of biological organization. (4) Attention is brought to two sub-types of indicators to monitor access management, land use indicators and wildlife use indicators. (5) Ecological indicators of access and access management share one similar data layer, GIS access infrastructure data.
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