701-1452-00L  Wildlife Conservation and Management

SemesterSpring Semester 2019
Lecturersto be announced
Periodicityyearly recurring course
CourseDoes not take place this semester.
Language of instructionEnglish


701-1452-00 GWildlife Conservation and Management
Does not take place this semester.
2 hrsto be announced

Catalogue data

AbstractThe course deals with major issues in wildlife conservation and management, the emphasis being on the underlying population processes. Topics include species interactions (predation, herbivory), conservation challenges in a landscape-ecological context, and the social background (values, policies, etc.). The course consists of seminar-type lectures, lab exercises, home reading, and a field trip.
ObjectiveReview major issues in wildlife conservation and management; understand the underlying ecological principles, particularly population processes; link them to principles of landscape ecology; be aware of human aspects and the distinction of scientific questions from questions rooting in society's value system; understand principles of policy formulation; become acquainted with simple modelling procedures; get some experience with field methods and field situations.
ContentThe course deals with major issues in wildlife conservation and management with a focus on temperate regions as far as the topics go, but with a general view on principles. There will be an emphasis on population processes as the basis for management, and on applying this knowledge to problems of declining, small and harvestable populations, and population interactions such as predation, competition and herbivory. Aspects of how society's value system (stakeholder values, beliefs, laws) shape management goals and how valuation and science interact in policy formulation, will also be addressed. Conservation-oriented topics will be illustrated mainly with amphibian and reptile examples.

The course consists of lectures with seminar-type discussion parts, preceded by home reading of pertinent literature, occasional lab exercises (using spreadsheets Excel or Open Office Calc, and SPSS/R), and a two-days field trip.

Provisional program, sequence may change (WS=W. Suter, UH=U. Hofer):

1. Introduction; science & policy (WS)
2. Issues and methods in wildlife research (WS)
3. Population parameters in harvested species (WS)
4. Sustainable harvest (WS)
5. Conservation of vertebrates: Objectives, perspectives (UH)
6. Knowledge of species: Example indigenous reptiles (UH)
7. Evaluation of populations: population size (UH)
8. Evaluation of habitats: habitat use, habitat quality (UH)
9. Evaluation of landscapes: connectivity (UH)
10. Management issue 1: herbivory (WS)
11. Management issue 2: predation (WS)

Field trip:
Possibly 19-20 May, 2017
Provisional program: Day 1: Reptiles in subalpine environments - visit good reptile sites; evening-Day 2: visit to main large predator study area in western Alps, presentations by and discussions of human-large predator conflicts with researchers
Lecture notesThe course will partly be based on 'Mills, L.S. 2013. Conservation of Wildlife Populations. Demography, Genetics, and Management. Chichester: Wiley-Blackwell. 326 pp.', and several chapters are strongly recommended. The book can be obtained from http://www.polybuchhandlung.ch/studium/index.php3)

Other literature/information will be provided as handouts or is available online.
Literatureother useful books:

Fryxell, J.M., Sinclair, A.R.E. & Caughley, G. 2014. Wildlife Ecology, Conservation, and Management. 3rd edition. Chichester: Wiley-Blackwell. 528 pp.

Owen-Smith, N. 2007. Introduction to Modeling in Wildlife and Resource Conservation. Malden: Blackwell Publishing. 332 pp.

Conroy, M.J. & Carroll, J.P. 2009. Quantitative Conservation of Vertebrates. Southern Gate: Wiley-Blackwell. 342 pp.
Prerequisites / NoticeThe course builds on the Bachelor course '701-0305-00 G Ökologie der Wirbeltiere', and on subjects taught in courses such as '701-0310-00 G Naturschutz und Stadtbioökologie' and '701-0553-00 G Landschaftsökologie', or similar. Reading Fryxell et al. 2014 (see literature) would also provide an excellent background. Participants in the course are expected to have a fair level of background knowledge.

Performance assessment

Performance assessment information (valid until the course unit is held again)
Performance assessment as a semester course
ECTS credits2 credits
Typesession examination
Language of examinationEnglish
RepetitionThe performance assessment is offered every session. Repetition possible without re-enrolling for the course unit.
Mode of examinationwritten 60 minutes
Written aidskeine
This information can be updated until the beginning of the semester; information on the examination timetable is binding.

Learning materials

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Only public learning materials are listed.


No information on groups available.


There are no additional restrictions for the registration.

Offered in

Biology MasterElective Compulsory Master CoursesWInformation
Doctoral Department of Environmental SciencesEcology an EvolutionWInformation
Environmental Sciences MasterApplicationsWInformation
Environmental Sciences MasterNatural Science FoundationsWInformation