Match!

Emerging threats and persistent conservation challenges for freshwater biodiversity

Published on Jun 1, 2019in Biological Reviews10.288
· DOI :10.1111/brv.12480
Andrea J. Reid5
Estimated H-index: 5
(Carleton University),
Andrew K. Carlson6
Estimated H-index: 6
(MSU: Michigan State University)
+ 13 AuthorsSteven J. Cooke69
Estimated H-index: 69
(Carleton University)
Sources
Abstract
In the 12 years since Dudgeon et al. (2006) reviewed major pressures on freshwater ecosystems, the biodiversity crisis in the world’s lakes, reservoirs, rivers, streams and wetlands has deepened. While lakes, reservoirs and rivers cover only 2.3% of the Earth’s surface, these ecosystems host at least 9.5% of the Earth’s described animal species. Furthermore, using the World Wide Fund for Nature’s Living Planet Index, freshwater population declines (83% between 1970 and 2014) continue to outpace contemporaneous declines in marine or terrestrial systems. The Anthropocene has brought multiple new and varied threats that disproportionately impact freshwater systems. We document 12 emerging threats to freshwater biodiversity that are either entirely new since 2006 or have since intensified: (i) changing climates; (ii) e-commerce and invasions; (iii) infectious diseases; (iv) harmful algal blooms; (v) expanding hydropower; (vi) emerging contaminants; (vii) engineered nanomaterials; (viii) microplastic pollution; (ix) light and noise; (x) freshwater salinisation; (xi) declining calcium; and (xii) cumulative stressors. Effects are evidenced for amphibians, fishes, invertebrates, microbes, plants, turtles and waterbirds, with potential for ecosystem-level changes through bottom-up and top-down processes. In our highly uncertain future, the net effects of these threats raise serious concerns for freshwater ecosystems. However, we also highlight opportunities for conservation gains as a result of novel management tools (e.g. environmental flows, environmental DNA) and specific conservation-oriented actions (e.g. dam removal, habitat protection policies,managed relocation of species) that have been met with varying levels of success.Moving forward, we advocate hybrid approaches that manage fresh waters as crucial ecosystems for human life support as well as essential hotspots of biodiversity and ecological function. Efforts to reverse global trends in freshwater degradation now depend on bridging an immense gap between the aspirations of conservation biologists and the accelerating rate of species endangerment.
Figures & Tables
  • References (283)
  • Citations (46)
📖 Papers frequently viewed together
2,999 Citations
201043.07Nature
2,819 Citations
671 Citations
78% of Scinapse members use related papers. After signing in, all features are FREE.
References283
Newest
#1William Darwall (IUCN: International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources)H-Index: 22
#2Vanessa Bremerich (Leibniz Association)H-Index: 5
Last. Olaf L. F. Weyl (South African Institute for Aquatic Biodiversity)H-Index: 26
view all 23 authors...
Global pressures on freshwater ecosystems are high and rising. Viewed primarily as a resource for humans, current practices of water use have led to catastrophic declines in freshwater species and the degradation of freshwater ecosystems, including their genetic and functional diversity. Approximately three‐quarters of the world's inland wetlands have been lost, one‐third of the 28 000 freshwater species assessed for the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List are threaten...
15 CitationsSource
#1Etienne Fluet-Chouinard (UW: University of Wisconsin-Madison)H-Index: 8
#2Simon Funge-Smith (FAO: Food and Agriculture Organization)H-Index: 5
Last. Peter McIntyre (UW: University of Wisconsin-Madison)H-Index: 54
view all 3 authors...
Consumption of wild-caught freshwater fish is concentrated in low-income countries, where it makes a critical contribution to food security and livelihoods. Underestimation of inland harvests in official statistics has long been suspected due to unmonitored subsistence fisheries. To overcome the lack of data from extensive small-scale harvests, we used household consumption surveys to estimate freshwater fish catches in 42 low- and middle-income countries between 1997 and 2014. After accounting ...
14 CitationsSource
#1Angela H. Arthington (Griffith University)H-Index: 46
#2Anik Bhaduri (Griffith University)H-Index: 14
Last. Selina Ward (UQ: University of Queensland)H-Index: 20
view all 16 authors...
A decade ago, scientists and practitioners working in environmental water management crystallized the progress and direction of environmental flows science, practice, and policy in The Brisbane Declaration and Global Action Agenda (2007), during the 10th International Riversymposium and International Environmental Flows Conference held in Brisbane, Australia. The 2007 Declaration highlights the significance of environmental water allocations for humans and freshwater-dependent ecosystems, and se...
18 CitationsSource
#1Albert Ruhí (UMD: University of Maryland, College Park)H-Index: 18
#2Mathis L. Messager (UW: University of Washington)H-Index: 3
Last. Julian D. Olden (UW: University of Washington)H-Index: 69
view all 3 authors...
Reliable accounting of freshwater resources is key to managing hydrologic risk and balancing freshwater allocations for ecosystems and society. However, recent claims have argued that the global hydrometric network is not keeping pace with monitoring needs. Here we examine this question globally and reveal that over the past four decades the number of streamgaging stations reporting to global, open datasets has been declining. In the United States, a declining trend was reversed by the turn of t...
9 CitationsSource
#1Enrico Di Minin (UKZN: University of KwaZulu-Natal)H-Index: 19
#2Christoph Fink (UH: University of Helsinki)H-Index: 3
Last. Tuomo Hiippala (UH: University of Helsinki)H-Index: 7
view all 4 authors...
17 CitationsSource
#1Ana T. Silva (Carleton University)H-Index: 10
#2Martyn C. Lucas (Durham University)H-Index: 33
Last. Steven J. Cooke (Carleton University)H-Index: 69
view all 17 authors...
Much effort has been devoted to developing, constructing and refining fish passage facilities to enable target species to pass barriers on fluvial systems, and yet, fishway science, engineering and practice remain imperfect. In this review, 17 experts from different fish passage research fields (i.e., biology, ecology, physiology, ecohydraulics, engineering) and from different continents (i.e., North and South America, Europe, Africa, Australia) identified knowledge gaps and provided a roadmap f...
53 CitationsSource
#1Thiago Ba Couto (UW: University of Washington)H-Index: 1
#2Julian D. Olden (UW: University of Washington)H-Index: 69
36 CitationsSource
#1Sujay S. Kaushal (UMD: University of Maryland, College Park)H-Index: 36
#2Gene E. Likens (UConn: University of Connecticut)H-Index: 107
Last. Melissa M. Grese (UMD: University of Maryland, College Park)H-Index: 4
view all 7 authors...
Salt pollution and human-accelerated weathering are shifting the chemical composition of major ions in fresh water and increasing salinization and alkalinization across North America. We propose a concept, the freshwater salinization syndrome, which links salinization and alkalinization processes. This syndrome manifests as concurrent trends in specific conductance, pH, alkalinity, and base cations. Although individual trends can vary in strength, changes in salinization and alkalinization have ...
55 CitationsSource
#1Pavol Prokop (SAV: Slovak Academy of Sciences)H-Index: 29
#2Christoph RandlerH-Index: 36
Abstract Animals are everyday components of human lives across cultures since ancient times, but the history of interactions with animals that could have influenced the evolution of the human brain is much older. The focus of this chapter will be specifically on the biological influences of human attitudes to animals, as well as on the role of education in forming children's attitudes and their perception of living creatures. Negative attitudes toward some dangerous animals lies in these early i...
5 CitationsSource
Ongoing increases in air temperature and changing precipitation patterns are altering water temperatures and flow regimes in lotic freshwater systems, and these changes are expected to continue in the coming century. Freshwater taxa are responding to these changes at all levels of biological organization. The generation of appropriate hydrologic and water temperature projections is critical to accurately predict the impacts of climate change on freshwater systems in the coming decade. The goal o...
24 CitationsSource
Cited By46
Newest
#1Kang Chen (CAS: Chinese Academy of Sciences)
#2Yintao Jia (CAS: Chinese Academy of Sciences)H-Index: 6
Last. Yifeng Chen (CAS: Chinese Academy of Sciences)H-Index: 14
view all 6 authors...
Abstract The multimetric index of biotic integrity (IBI) based on fish assemblages has been widely used to monitor aquatic ecosystem status in headwater streams. However, the application of the IBI has generally been biased by the low number of species and natural altitudinal gradients in these systems. To overcome these limitations, taxonomic distinctness and size-weight-based indices were integrated into our candidate metric pool, and calibration was performed to reduce the effects of the alti...
Source
#1Peter Jones (Swansea University)H-Index: 1
#2Sofia Consuegra (Swansea University)H-Index: 21
Last. Carlos Garcia de Leaniz (Swansea University)H-Index: 19
view all 5 authors...
Source
#1Isabela Martins (UFMG: Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais)H-Index: 2
#2Diego Rodrigues Macedo (UFMG: Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais)H-Index: 8
Last. Marcos Callisto (UFMG: Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais)H-Index: 31
view all 4 authors...
Abstract The quality and availability of water resources in tropical watersheds are threatened by increased multiple use demands by human populations. Therefore, there is a need for cost-effective ecological indicators of water body status and trends. Multimetric indices (MMIs), based on responses of biological assemblages to anthropogenic disturbances, are excellent examples of such indicators and they have been applied globally. However, creating new MMIs for each water body or study area requ...
Source
#1Daniel Fonseca Teixeira (PUC-MG: Pontifícia Universidade Católica de Minas Gerais)
#1Daniel Fonseca Teixeira (UFMG: Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais)
Last. Daniel C. Carvalho (PUC-MG: Pontifícia Universidade Católica de Minas Gerais)H-Index: 12
view all 5 authors...
Clarifying the intricate history of unrecorded fish invasions represents an important step in understanding the invasion process. Here, we elucidate the invasion of a Neotropical river basin in Southeastern Brazil by a very efficient predator, the white piranha (Serrasalmus brandtii). We used a temporal series of population dynamics data (2008–2016) and analyses of mitochondrial DNA sequences (COI, 16S, and control region) of specimens from the entire native (Sao Francisco River Basin, Southeast...
Source
#1Xiaoming JiangH-Index: 7
#2Baozhu PanH-Index: 1
Last. Yan LuH-Index: 1
view all 5 authors...
Abstract The taxonomic distinctness (TD) indices have been recommended as robust measures for detecting human disturbances, due to their appealing properties such as independence of sampling settings and statistical framework for discriminating disturbed habitats by randomization test. Here we test the application of two widely-used TD indices, namely average taxonomic distinctness (Δ+) and variation in taxonomic distinctness (Λ+), for assessing the effects of anthropogenic impacts (loss of rive...
2 CitationsSource
#1Grégory Guillaume Lemaire (DTU: Technical University of Denmark)
#2Ursula S. McKnight (DTU: Technical University of Denmark)H-Index: 9
Last. Poul Løgstrup Bjerg (DTU: Technical University of Denmark)H-Index: 45
view all 5 authors...
Source
#1Kevin O. ObieroH-Index: 5
#2Ted LawrenceH-Index: 2
Last. Robert E. Hecky (UMN: University of Minnesota)H-Index: 52
view all 10 authors...
Abstract The African Great Lakes (AGL) have rich fisheries and are renowned “biodiversity hotspots”. Consequently the AGLand the ecosystem services they provide, underpin the welfare and livelihoods of over 50 million people across 10 countries. Despite the recognized importance of the AGL, these vital ecosystems and their livelihood support systems are threatened by numerous anthropogenic stressors at local, regional, and global scales. Past and continued efforts to address critical challenges ...
Source
#1Romain Sarremejane (NTU: Nottingham Trent University)H-Index: 4
Last. Jani Heino (SYKE: Finnish Environment Institute)H-Index: 49
view all 19 authors...
Abstract Motivation: Dispersal is an essential process in population and community dynamics but is difficult to measure in the field. In freshwater systems, relevant information on the dispersal of many taxa remains scattered or unpublished, and biological traits related to organisms morphology, life history and behaviour offer useful dispersal proxies. We compiled information on selected dispersal-related biological traits of European aquatic macroinvertebrates in a unique source: the DISPERSE ...
Source
#1David TicknerH-Index: 1
#1David TicknerH-Index: 2
view all 26 authors...
Despite their limited spatial extent, freshwater ecosystems host remarkable biodiversity, including one-third of all vertebrate species. This biodiversity is declining dramatically: Globally, wetlands are vanishing three times faster than forests, and freshwater vertebrate populations have fallen more than twice as steeply as terrestrial or marine populations. Threats to freshwater biodiversity are well documented but coordinated action to reverse the decline is lacking. We present an Emergency ...
Source
Anthropogenic microfibers (thread-like pieces of litter < 5 mm in size) including microplastic fibers have been suggested to pose a growing threat to urban rivers across the world. However, in most urban rivers, we have a limited understanding of how anthropogenic microfibers vary in presence and abundance over time. In this study, we examined how the presence and abundance of anthropogenic microfibers varied in the Cumberland River in Nashville, TN, a growing city with more than one million res...
Source