CBSG 2013 A data management application of the One Plan approach: Linking In Situ and Ex Situ Data Management for Conservation

In alignment with a One Plan Approach, the overall objective is to develop scientific-based recommendations for establishing a global database system that will provide a direct link between information collected on animals under human care and on the
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  2013 CBSG Annual Meeting: A Data Management Application of the One Plan Approach 1 A data management application of the One Plan Approach: Linking In Situ   and Ex Situ   Data Management for Conservation Working Group Report Convenor: Karin Schwartz Facilitator: Mike Jordan Recorder: Karin Schwartz Flip Chart Recorder: Madelon Willemsen Presenter: Karin Schwartz Participants Randall Arguedas, Bishan Singh Bonal, Irus Braverman, Dalia Conde, Gina Ferrie, Nate Flesness, Markus Gusset, Hidemasa Hori, N.H. Jang-Liaw, Urarikha Kongprom, Bob Lacy, Kristin Leus, Sarah Long, Sonja Luz, Lynn McDuffie, Ivan Rehak, Christoph Schwitzer, Boripat Siriaroonrat, Ampika Thongphakdee, Kanako Tomisawa, Kathy Traylor-Holzer, Eric Tsao, Hirofumi Watabe Background With anthropogenic factors accelerating the extinction rate of species 100 to 1000 times the natural rate, biodiversity conservation has become mandatory for sustainability of our natural world. It is imperative that species conservation strategies involve both in situ (in the wild) and ex situ (in captivity) communities for holistic, integrative conservation action planning, as outlined in the One Plan Approach (see CBSG website). Previous CBSG projects using this integration of in situ and ex situ programs include conservation planning for Okinawa rail and black-footed ferret. Zoos and aquariums have become centers committed to biodiversity conservation, contributing through support and participation in conservation efforts for threatened species in the wild. Many zoological institutions are directly involved in such conservation programs with participation in captive breeding for reintroduction, head-starting animals to increase juvenile survival after release, wildlife health assessments, rescue/rehabilitation/release of injured wildlife or supplementation programs to increase wild populations. For all of the scenarios, there is integration of ex situ and in situ  components for overall species conservation.  As stated in IUCN/SSC Reintroduction Specialist Group recently released Guidelines for Reintroductions and Other Conservation Translocations (IUCN/SSC 2013), data management processes are important to include in planning a translocation (Section 4) and monitoring program design (Section 8), as well as in disseminating information (Section 9). Prior to implementation of a translocation, the objectives will dictate what data should be collected, where and when, to provide evidence to measure progress towards program goals and to facilitate adaptive management of the program. Data on the translocated individuals prior to the release event are important to integrate into the overall data management process to give a holistic view of both ex situ  and in situ  components of the program.  2013 CBSG Annual Meeting: A Data Management Application of the One Plan Approach 2 In planning a translocation (IUCN/SSC 2013): Sophisticated records-keeping and population management tools have been developed for use in zoological conservation management programs. Globally, 850 zoological institutions use the International Species Information System  –  a central global database for animal records collection, compilation and analysis, all integral for scientific population management. ISIS has deployed a new system, the Zoological Information Management System (ZIMS) that includes leading-edge web-based technologies, data warehousing and veterinary care tracking functionality, enabling real-time access to animal records and veterinary history from anywhere in the world. Now, a need for managing critical populations of endangered species in the wild has emerged as more conservation translocations of captive-bred or rescue/rehabilitated animals occur. Currently, very few conservation translocation programs utilize these data management tools for holistic animal management and there is no direct link between the animal records in ISIS and databases used in monitoring and managing those animals released to the wild or for intensively managed wild populations. There is a need for information exchange and standardization between ex situ and in situ data management practices when these factions intersect in species recovery programs. For the development of any database system, it's important to receive input on what will be required from the stakeholders that will be using the system. ISIS has worked with the zoological community to establish a standardized global system with incredible capacity and functionality for ex situ  data management. For the in situ  component, input is needed from those specialists that are working in the field and their input is critical to make sure that the information system can handle the required information to manage and assess these recovery programs. It is important to identify data needed, the technology/programs in current use to capture data (what fields are needed, what types of databases used), how the data are analyzed and what programs could be linked to an animal records system. Comments from Reintroduction Specialist Group members that couldn’t attend the workshop:  Doug Armstrong I think the key thing is to the "whole problem" in mind. That is, data management is about systems for accessing monitoring data, and monitoring is in turn the collection of data with the aim of improving management outcomes. So the key is to identify what the aims of the whole management programmes  2013 CBSG Annual Meeting: A Data Management Application of the One Plan Approach 3 are (i.e. captive breeding and reintroduction), identify the key questions that need to be answered to optimize management, then try to optimize monitoring in light of those questions and constraints (e.g. weigh up the value of information against the cost of getting it). So for me the thing to target at the workshop would be trying to identify the most useful data to collect, and secondarily worry about how to make it available. The most obvious things to think about are factors affecting post-release survival (and possibly reproduction) and factors affecting long-term viability. Stud-book data is something that's clearly useful for both, but I think is something that zoos already do quite well. So what might be, say, other health and behavioural issues that are likely to be important enough to collect data on? Bajomi Bálint In my opinion, your idea (for the workshop) is good. We have compiled a database of more than 4000 references of reintroduction publications. I think this database could be integrated or connected to your future database, because publications are crucial part of data management. Mark Stanley Price From the species conservation planning perspective, I am not sure what databases exist for rare species information. When one is preparing a status review in prep for planning, one has to seek information from all available and known sources. Doubtless, this is a weakness, but then the task of collating and standardizing information on any set of species, such as Endangered etc., will be monumental. I'd also observe that planning for species in the wild does not usually take adequate account of the resources of individuals and knowledge created/held by the zoo community; this is something we shall hope to fix as we move the SSC planning techniques forward. I can add little at this stage (for the workshop) beyond to endorse what the new Guidelines state! I will be interested to hear of the results of your deliberations.   Data Management Working Group Objectives Aim: The overall objective is to develop scientific-based recommendations for establishing a global database system that will provide a direct link between information collected on animals under human care and on the wild population in order to enhance in situ conservation of these species. Ex situ data management processes are well documented and standardized using ISIS Zoological Information Management System. For this workshop, the objective was to identify in situ data management processes and data needed for monitoring and assessment of populations of threatened species that have been returned to the wild. Process: The working group explored current practices for data management of in situ species conservation programs and identified how critical components can be integrated with ex situ  processes   for holistic species conservation. Platforms that were discussed included ISIS Zoological Information Management System as well as data management tools used for monitoring animals in the wild, with the possibility of linking systems.  2013 CBSG Annual Meeting: A Data Management Application of the One Plan Approach 4 I. Identify 1) In situ data needed to provide evidence for progress towards conservation program objectives. a. Research objectives i. Health ii. Biology iii. Ecology iv. Behavior b. Population management and sustainability objectives c. Program management objectives 2) In situ  (or ex situ ) data needed for conservation action planning for PHVAs Discussion: There was a brainstorming session to identify all kinds of data needed, not limited to animal data. We had to first identify how the data would be used. What is the purpose of data? 1) Monitor success of conservation translocation - assess variables that impact success. 2) Monitor fate of individuals to guide management  –  direct monitoring of individuals 3) Monitor the health of the population 3) Monitor impact of reintroduced animals on system. A reintroduction might be successful but detrimental to other species in the ecosystem. 4) Use data for projections to model strategy 5) Inform better management in captivity or wild 6) Determine if ecosystem function is restored  –  community impact. Another novel goal of release may include introduction for ecological replacement  –  e.g. tortoises on islands, etc. 7) Used in research on biology, ecology, land use, etc. Important data to include:  Animal data Population data Habitat data Ex situ  data (pre-release data) Methodology data Stochastic events  –  environmental, demographic, genetic Environmental measures Events or occurrences that impact carrying capacity  Animal data Individual identification -Physical identifiers-tags, bands, transponders, tattoos, individual markings Logical identifiers  –  ID numbers, studbook numbers, names Source (from wild or captivity) Demographic data (survivability, sex, age) Reproduction data Trends and variability Pedigree - parentage Health  –  blood values, morphometrics, body condition, pre-release health, immunizations, disease Location of each animal  Animal movements Social group information  –  which family groups are forming, social dynamics Two buckets- assuming tracking individuals or at population level, both include species characteristics Translocation  –   who’s going where (human mediated)    2013 CBSG Annual Meeting: A Data Management Application of the One Plan Approach 5  Activity data Natural history data Interaction with humans/conflict Mortality data
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