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Durham University

Research & business

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Publication details for Dr Thomas Mason

Cusack, Jeremy J., Duthie, A. Brad, Rakotonarivo, O. Sarobidy, Pozo, Rocío A., Mason, Tom H.E., Månsson, Johan, Nilsson, Lovisa, Tombre, Ingunn M., Eythórsson, Einar, Madsen, Jesper, Tulloch, Ayesha, Hearn, Richard D., Redpath, Steve & Bunnefeld, Nils (2019). Time series analysis reveals synchrony and asynchrony between conflict management effort and increasing large grazing bird populations in northern Europe. Conservation Letters 12(1): e12450.

Author(s) from Durham


The management of conflicts between wildlife conservation and agricultural practices often involves the implementation of strategies aimed at reducing the cost of wildlife impacts on crops. Vital to the success of these strategies is the perception that changes in management efforts are synchronized relative to changes in impact levels, yet this expectation is never evaluated. We assess the level of synchrony between time series of population counts and management effort in the context of conflicts between agriculture and five populations of large grazing birds in northern Europe. We reveal inconsistent patterns of synchrony and asynchrony between changes in population counts and impact management effort relating to population harvesting, monetary payments, or scaring practices. This variation is likely due to differing management aims, the existence of lags between management decisions and population monitoring, and the inconsistent use of predictive models across case studies. Overall, our findings highlight the need for more adaptive and timely responses of management to changes in target species numbers so as not to unexpectedly increase social conflicts and jeopardize the status of wildlife populations.