Negative effects of urban sprawl on biodiversity are widely recognised, but information on how to counteract such effects are still scarce, especially for urban ecosystems in mountain regions. We evaluated the effect of land-use and topography on the occurrence of eight passerine species in five urbanized study areas in the Italian Alps, which have undergone recent urban sprawl. Our aim was to identify the best planning and management practices to favour these indicator species in mountain periurban areas. We surveyed the species' presence/absence at 142 point counts during the 2013 breeding season and evaluated the effects of environmental variables on occurrence using binomial multivariate adaptive regression splines (MARS). Species occurrence was mostly affected by meadows (positively) and woodland (negative effect, except in contexts with high meadow cover or high habitat diversity). In Alpine valleys affected by recent sprawl, the conservation or restoration of grassland patches and the maintenance of heterogeneous landscapes can contribute to the conservation of some species of conservation concern found in suburban habitats. Afforestation, a common mitigation practice in and around urban centres, could be counter-indicated when urbanization occurs at the expense of open and semi-open habitats.

Land-use and bird occurrence at the urban margins in the Italian Alps: Implications for planning and conservation / G. Assandri, G. Bogliani, P. Pedrini, M. Brambilla. - In: NORTH-WESTERN JOURNAL OF ZOOLOGY. - ISSN 1584-9074. - 13:1(2017 Jun), pp. 77-84.

Land-use and bird occurrence at the urban margins in the Italian Alps: Implications for planning and conservation

M. Brambilla
Ultimo
2017-06

Abstract

Negative effects of urban sprawl on biodiversity are widely recognised, but information on how to counteract such effects are still scarce, especially for urban ecosystems in mountain regions. We evaluated the effect of land-use and topography on the occurrence of eight passerine species in five urbanized study areas in the Italian Alps, which have undergone recent urban sprawl. Our aim was to identify the best planning and management practices to favour these indicator species in mountain periurban areas. We surveyed the species' presence/absence at 142 point counts during the 2013 breeding season and evaluated the effects of environmental variables on occurrence using binomial multivariate adaptive regression splines (MARS). Species occurrence was mostly affected by meadows (positively) and woodland (negative effect, except in contexts with high meadow cover or high habitat diversity). In Alpine valleys affected by recent sprawl, the conservation or restoration of grassland patches and the maintenance of heterogeneous landscapes can contribute to the conservation of some species of conservation concern found in suburban habitats. Afforestation, a common mitigation practice in and around urban centres, could be counter-indicated when urbanization occurs at the expense of open and semi-open habitats.
Alps; Meadows; Mountain landscape; Trentino; Urban sprawl
Settore BIO/07 - Ecologia
http://biozoojournals.ro/nwjz/content/v13n1.html
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/2434/905247
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