Scotland’s biodiversity progress to 2020 Aichi targets: conserving genetic diversity – development of a national approach for addressing Aichi Biodiversity Target 13 that includes wild species

Hollingsworth, P.M.; O'Brien, D.; Ennos, R.A.; Yahr, R.; Neaves, L.; Ahrends, A.; Ballingall, K.T.; Brooker, R.W.; Burke, T.; Cavers, S.; Dawson, I.K.; Elston, D.A.; Kerr, J.; Marshall, D.F.; Pakeman, R.J.; Trivedi, C.; Wall, E.; Wright, F.; Ogden, R.. 2020 Scotland’s biodiversity progress to 2020 Aichi targets: conserving genetic diversity – development of a national approach for addressing Aichi Biodiversity Target 13 that includes wild species. Inverness, Scottish Natural Heritage, 32pp.

Before downloading, please read NORA policies.
N526707CR.pdf - Published Version

Download (1MB) | Preview


Aichi Target 13 (T13) focuses on the conservation of genetic diversity. •Major challenges in implementing T13 are that the type of genetic diversity to conserve is not clearly defined, and that key issues in genetic conservation vary across different sectors (e.g., forestry vs agriculture vs other species of socio-economic importance). •In Scotland and the UK more widely, baseline mechanisms are well established for assessing and reporting on genetic diversity in species of agricultural importance (e.g., rare livestock breeds, crop wild relatives), and a methodology has been established for ornamental plants. •A new UK Strategy for Forest Genetics Resources was launched in 2019, creating a framework for linking forest trees into T13 reporting. •However, there is no clear strategy to deal with ‘other species of socio-economic importance’ in Scotland, the UK or indeed elsewhere, and addressing this gap is the major focus of this report. •There is a lack of guidance for identifying focal species of socio-economic importance, and no clear mechanism for addressing T13 for these species once they have been identified. •To address this, we have identified a set of criteria for defining terrestrial and freshwater species of socio-economic importance in Scotland, and selected an initial list of 26 species. •The criteria applied were: -National conservation priority wild species. -Species of national cultural importance. -Species providing key ecosystem services. -Species of importance for wild harvesting (food and medicine). -Economically important game species. •We then developed a simple, readily applicable scorecard method for assessing risks to the conservation of genetic diversity in these species. •The scorecard approach is not dependent on prior genetic knowledge, and instead uses structured expert opinion assessments of whether: -Demographic declines are likely to lead to loss of genetic diversity (genetic erosion). -Hybridisation is likely to lead to undesirable replacement of genetic diversity. -Restrictions to regeneration/turnover are likely to impede evolutionary change. •For plant species where seed-banking is a viable mechanism for holding genetic resources ex situ,we also report on the representativeness of these ex situ collections. •Overall, this scorecard provides a mechanism for incorporating ‘other species of socio-economic importance’ into T13 actions and reporting. •Furthermore, its application is not restricted to Aichi T13 as the approach is designed as a generic scorecard for genetic diversity. It is thus relevant to post-2020 CBD targets focusing on genetic diversity. •Future priorities include: -Extension to other species of socio-economic, commercial and cultural importance (with the inclusion of marine species being a particularly high priority). -Harmonising genetic conservation strategies between sectors (drawing on commonalities), whilst minimising disruption of existing well-established methodologies within sectors. -Greater incorporation of genomic data into monitoring genetic diversity (particularly in the agricultural and forestry sectors where data availability is potentially high).

Item Type: Publication - Report
UKCEH and CEH Sections/Science Areas: Biodiversity (Science Area 2017-)
ISBN: 9781783919512
Funders/Sponsors: SEFARI Gateway, Rural and Environmental Science and Analytical Services Division of Scottish Government, NERC
NORA Subject Terms: Ecology and Environment
Date made live: 05 Feb 2020 10:58 +0 (UTC)

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item

Document Downloads

Downloads for past 30 days

Downloads per month over past year

More statistics for this item...