An integrated framework for developing ecological indicators of visitor use in protected areas

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Title An integrated framework for developing ecological indicators of visitor use in protected areas
Author Castley, Guy; Pickering, Catherine Marina; Hill, Wendy May
Publication Title Australian Protected Areas Congress Proceedings
Year Published 2008
Place of publication Brisbane
Publisher Australian Proteced Areas Congress
Abstract Sustainable tourism is considered an appropriate use of many Australian protected areas. However, such use needs to be managed and the effectiveness of management needs to be assessed as overuse can adversely affect the natural environment. Monitoring and management of visitor impacts requires integration into evaluation frameworks to enable more efficient reporting but within Australia this appears to be poorly developed. To assist with the future management of visitors in protected areas we have developed a framework which integrates visitor impact monitoring and evaluation within adaptive management cycles to improve management responses. The framework uses, as far as possible, existing management process for focusing monitoring efforts and selecting appropriate ecological indicators. This focus is achieved through a process of prioritisation of natural assets used by visitors, or those likely to be impacted by visitor use. Here we review the value of the natural asset, its vulnerability as well as the type and severity of visitor use. The indicators selected using this framework are linked to existing evaluation frameworks (e.g. WCPA) to provide a baseline information for core protected area evaluation subjects (e.g. change in condition estimates) across a variety of spatial scales. We outline the functionality of the framework using a six step process and expand on the ability of the framework to be applied in other protected area management situations.
Peer Reviewed No
Published Yes
Publisher URI
Conference name Australian Protected Areas Congress
Location Sunshine Coast, Queensland
Date From 2008-11-24
Date To 2008-11-28
Date Accessioned 2009-02-16
Language en_AU
Research Centre Environmental Futures Research Institute
Faculty Faculty of Science, Environment, Engineering and Technology
Subject Environmental Impact Assessment; Impacts of Tourism
Publication Type Conference Publications (Extract Paper)
Publication Type Code e3

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