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Conservation biogeography of freshwater fishes: recent progress and future challenges

TitleConservation biogeography of freshwater fishes: recent progress and future challenges
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2010
AuthorsOlden, JD, Kennard, MJ, Leprieur, F, Tedesco, PA, Winemiller, KO, Garcia-Berthou, E
JournalDiversity and Distributions
Start Page496
Date Published05/2010
ISSN1472-4642 (Online)
KeywordsBiological invasions, climate change, conservation planning, functional diversity, species diversity

Aim: To identify key research questions and challenges that will, if addressed in a timely manner, significantly advance the field of freshwater fish biogeography and conservation.

Location: Globe.

Methods: By drawing on expertise from different regions of the world, we integrate an illustrative conspectus of recent scientific advancements in fish biogeography with a prospectus of needed areas of scientific inquiry to identify information gaps and priority research needs to advance the science.

Results: We identified the following core challenges: (1) Testing current and forging new theories in biogeography; (2) Advancing a trait-based biogeography of freshwater fishes; (3) Quantifying extinction risk and loss of fish species in a changing environment; (4) Evaluating the magnitude and geography of extinction debt for freshwater fishes; (5) Elucidating the patterns and drivers of freshwater fish invasions; (6) Forecasting the future geography of freshwater fishes; (7) Understanding the interactive effects of multiple stressors in freshwater ecosystems; (8) Quantifying new features of the biodiversity crisis: fish faunal homogenization and the emergence of novel assemblages; (9) Promoting scientific rigour in emerging freshwater fish conservation strategies and (10) Improving conservation planning strategies for freshwater fish species.

Main conclusions: By reflecting on recent scientific progress in fish conservation biogeography, we have identified a set of core challenges and priorities requiring future research investment.