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Nature. 2017 May 31;546(7656):91-99. doi: 10.1038/nature22902.

Upgrading protected areas to conserve wild biodiversity.

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Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, Princeton University, Princeton, New Jersey 08544, USA.
Board of Directors, The Gorongosa Project, Gorongosa National Park, Sofala Province, Mozambique.
Guanacaste Dry Forest Conservation Fund, Área de Conservación Guanacaste, Costa Rica.


International agreements mandate the expansion of Earth's protected-area network as a bulwark against the continued extinction of wild populations, species, and ecosystems. Yet many protected areas are underfunded, poorly managed, and ecologically damaged; the conundrum is how to increase their coverage and effectiveness simultaneously. Innovative restoration and rewilding programmes in Costa Rica's Área de Conservación Guanacaste and Mozambique's Parque Nacional da Gorongosa highlight how degraded ecosystems can be rehabilitated, expanded, and woven into the cultural fabric of human societies. Worldwide, enormous potential for biodiversity conservation can be realized by upgrading existing nature reserves while harmonizing them with the needs and aspirations of their constituencies.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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