Abstract # 28:

Scheduled for Thursday, June 21, 2012 04:15 PM-04:30 PM: Session 7 (Camellia ) Oral Presentation


USING FUNCTIONAL CONNECTIVITY AND FLOW MODELS TO PRIORITIZE AREAS FOR REFORESTATION IN SEVERELY FRAGMENTED REGIONS OF THE GOLDEN-HEADED LION TAMARIN (LEONTOPITHECUS CHRYSOMELAS) DISTRIBUTION

B. E. Raboy1,2, K. M. De Vleeschouwer2 and S. L. Zeigler3
1Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute, PO Box 37012, MRC 5503, Washington DC 20013-7012, USA, 2Centre for Research and Conservation, Royal Zoological Society of Antwerp, 3Department of Biological Sciences, Virginia Tech
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     Fragmented forest landscapes surrounded by unsuitable matrix threaten the long-term survival of small arboreal primates. One such species, the golden-headed lion tamarin (GHLT), resides in discontinuous forest archipelagos in the western part of their distribution in Southern Bahia, Brazil, where cattle-ranching prevails. We investigated the degree of functional connectivity considering limited inter-patch movement, and used this to prioritize areas for future physical connectivity in six landscape components in the GHLT distribution. The components were defined as clusters of forest patches linked by the potential for GHLTs to traverse ? 1km of cattle-pasture. The degree of overall connectivity within these components, defined by graph-theory based measures of betweeness centrality, was assessed through flow models in the Connectivity Analysis Toolkit. The models measured overall current flow through hexagonal cells (based on pair-wise random-walk algorithms) in the six landscapes. Models were derived from binary habitat classification with forest most suitable for movement, and a non-forest buffer extending 500 m from the forest one-tenth as suitable. The locations of the highest overall current flow occurring in the matrix were then identified per landscape. We suggest these areas are considered for reforestation, given their centrality to the overall maintenance of flow (animal movement and in turn gene flow) in the metapopulations, and because such reforestation may further facilitate travel along these routes while decreasing the probability of inter-patch predation.