Envisioning the future with ‘compassionate conservation’: An ominous projection for native wildlife and biodiversity

Alex Callen, Matt W. Hayward, Kaya Klop-Toker, Benjamin L. Allen, Guy Ballard, Chad T Beranek, Femke Broekhuis, Cassandra K Bugir, Rohan H. Clarke, John Clulow, Simon Clulow, Jennifer C. Daltry, Harriet T. Davies-Mostert, Yamil E. Di Blanco, Victoria Dixon, Peter J.S. Fleming, Lachlan G. Howell, Graham I.H. Kerley, Sarah M. Legge, Dean J. LengaTom Major, Robert A. Montgomery, Katherine Moseby, Ninon Meyer, Dan M. Parker, Stéphanie Périquet, John Read, Robert J. Scanlon, Craig Shuttleworth, Cottrell T. Tamessar, William Andrew Taylor, Katherine Tuft, Rose M.O. Upton, Marcia Valenzuela, Ryan R. Witt, Wolfgang Wüster

Research output: Contribution to journalReview ArticleResearchpeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The ‘Compassionate Conservation’ movement is gaining momentum through its promotion of ‘ethical’ conservation practices based on self-proclaimed principles of ‘first-do-no-harm’ and ‘individuals matter’. We argue that the tenets of ‘Compassionate Conservation’ are ideological - that is, they are not scientifically proven to improve conservation outcomes, yet are critical of the current methods that do. In this paper we envision a future with ‘Compassionate Conservation’ and predict how this might affect global biodiversity conservation. Taken literally, ‘Compassionate Conservation’ will deny current conservation practices such as captive breeding, introduced species control, biocontrol, conservation fencing, translocation, contraception, disease control and genetic introgression. Five mainstream conservation practices are used to illustrate the far-reaching and dire consequences for global biodiversity if governed by ‘Compassionate Conservation’. We acknowledge the important role of animal welfare science in conservation practices but argue that ‘Compassionate Conservation’ aligns more closely with animal liberation principles protecting individuals over populations. Ultimately we fear that a world of ‘Compassionate Conservation’ could stymie the global conservation efforts required to meet international biodiversity targets derived from evidenced based practice, such as the Aichi targets developed by the Convention on Biological Diversity and adopted by the International Union for the Conservation of Nature and the United Nations.

Original languageEnglish
Article number108365
Number of pages12
JournalBiological Conservation
Volume241
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2020

Keywords

  • Captive breeding
  • Contraception
  • Inbreeding
  • Invasive species
  • Translocation

Cite this

Callen, A., Hayward, M. W., Klop-Toker, K., Allen, B. L., Ballard, G., Beranek, C. T., ... Wüster, W. (2020). Envisioning the future with ‘compassionate conservation’: An ominous projection for native wildlife and biodiversity. Biological Conservation, 241, [108365]. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.biocon.2019.108365
Callen, Alex ; Hayward, Matt W. ; Klop-Toker, Kaya ; Allen, Benjamin L. ; Ballard, Guy ; Beranek, Chad T ; Broekhuis, Femke ; Bugir, Cassandra K ; Clarke, Rohan H. ; Clulow, John ; Clulow, Simon ; Daltry, Jennifer C. ; Davies-Mostert, Harriet T. ; Di Blanco, Yamil E. ; Dixon, Victoria ; Fleming, Peter J.S. ; Howell, Lachlan G. ; Kerley, Graham I.H. ; Legge, Sarah M. ; Lenga, Dean J. ; Major, Tom ; Montgomery, Robert A. ; Moseby, Katherine ; Meyer, Ninon ; Parker, Dan M. ; Périquet, Stéphanie ; Read, John ; Scanlon, Robert J. ; Shuttleworth, Craig ; Tamessar, Cottrell T. ; Taylor, William Andrew ; Tuft, Katherine ; Upton, Rose M.O. ; Valenzuela, Marcia ; Witt, Ryan R. ; Wüster, Wolfgang. / Envisioning the future with ‘compassionate conservation’ : An ominous projection for native wildlife and biodiversity. In: Biological Conservation. 2020 ; Vol. 241.
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abstract = "The ‘Compassionate Conservation’ movement is gaining momentum through its promotion of ‘ethical’ conservation practices based on self-proclaimed principles of ‘first-do-no-harm’ and ‘individuals matter’. We argue that the tenets of ‘Compassionate Conservation’ are ideological - that is, they are not scientifically proven to improve conservation outcomes, yet are critical of the current methods that do. In this paper we envision a future with ‘Compassionate Conservation’ and predict how this might affect global biodiversity conservation. Taken literally, ‘Compassionate Conservation’ will deny current conservation practices such as captive breeding, introduced species control, biocontrol, conservation fencing, translocation, contraception, disease control and genetic introgression. Five mainstream conservation practices are used to illustrate the far-reaching and dire consequences for global biodiversity if governed by ‘Compassionate Conservation’. We acknowledge the important role of animal welfare science in conservation practices but argue that ‘Compassionate Conservation’ aligns more closely with animal liberation principles protecting individuals over populations. Ultimately we fear that a world of ‘Compassionate Conservation’ could stymie the global conservation efforts required to meet international biodiversity targets derived from evidenced based practice, such as the Aichi targets developed by the Convention on Biological Diversity and adopted by the International Union for the Conservation of Nature and the United Nations.",
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author = "Alex Callen and Hayward, {Matt W.} and Kaya Klop-Toker and Allen, {Benjamin L.} and Guy Ballard and Beranek, {Chad T} and Femke Broekhuis and Bugir, {Cassandra K} and Clarke, {Rohan H.} and John Clulow and Simon Clulow and Daltry, {Jennifer C.} and Davies-Mostert, {Harriet T.} and {Di Blanco}, {Yamil E.} and Victoria Dixon and Fleming, {Peter J.S.} and Howell, {Lachlan G.} and Kerley, {Graham I.H.} and Legge, {Sarah M.} and Lenga, {Dean J.} and Tom Major and Montgomery, {Robert A.} and Katherine Moseby and Ninon Meyer and Parker, {Dan M.} and St{\'e}phanie P{\'e}riquet and John Read and Scanlon, {Robert J.} and Craig Shuttleworth and Tamessar, {Cottrell T.} and Taylor, {William Andrew} and Katherine Tuft and Upton, {Rose M.O.} and Marcia Valenzuela and Witt, {Ryan R.} and Wolfgang W{\"u}ster",
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Callen, A, Hayward, MW, Klop-Toker, K, Allen, BL, Ballard, G, Beranek, CT, Broekhuis, F, Bugir, CK, Clarke, RH, Clulow, J, Clulow, S, Daltry, JC, Davies-Mostert, HT, Di Blanco, YE, Dixon, V, Fleming, PJS, Howell, LG, Kerley, GIH, Legge, SM, Lenga, DJ, Major, T, Montgomery, RA, Moseby, K, Meyer, N, Parker, DM, Périquet, S, Read, J, Scanlon, RJ, Shuttleworth, C, Tamessar, CT, Taylor, WA, Tuft, K, Upton, RMO, Valenzuela, M, Witt, RR & Wüster, W 2020, 'Envisioning the future with ‘compassionate conservation’: An ominous projection for native wildlife and biodiversity', Biological Conservation, vol. 241, 108365. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.biocon.2019.108365

Envisioning the future with ‘compassionate conservation’ : An ominous projection for native wildlife and biodiversity. / Callen, Alex; Hayward, Matt W.; Klop-Toker, Kaya; Allen, Benjamin L.; Ballard, Guy; Beranek, Chad T; Broekhuis, Femke; Bugir, Cassandra K; Clarke, Rohan H.; Clulow, John; Clulow, Simon; Daltry, Jennifer C.; Davies-Mostert, Harriet T.; Di Blanco, Yamil E.; Dixon, Victoria; Fleming, Peter J.S.; Howell, Lachlan G.; Kerley, Graham I.H.; Legge, Sarah M.; Lenga, Dean J.; Major, Tom; Montgomery, Robert A.; Moseby, Katherine; Meyer, Ninon; Parker, Dan M.; Périquet, Stéphanie; Read, John; Scanlon, Robert J.; Shuttleworth, Craig; Tamessar, Cottrell T.; Taylor, William Andrew; Tuft, Katherine; Upton, Rose M.O.; Valenzuela, Marcia; Witt, Ryan R.; Wüster, Wolfgang.

In: Biological Conservation, Vol. 241, 108365, 01.01.2020.

Research output: Contribution to journalReview ArticleResearchpeer-review

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AU - Hayward, Matt W.

AU - Klop-Toker, Kaya

AU - Allen, Benjamin L.

AU - Ballard, Guy

AU - Beranek, Chad T

AU - Broekhuis, Femke

AU - Bugir, Cassandra K

AU - Clarke, Rohan H.

AU - Clulow, John

AU - Clulow, Simon

AU - Daltry, Jennifer C.

AU - Davies-Mostert, Harriet T.

AU - Di Blanco, Yamil E.

AU - Dixon, Victoria

AU - Fleming, Peter J.S.

AU - Howell, Lachlan G.

AU - Kerley, Graham I.H.

AU - Legge, Sarah M.

AU - Lenga, Dean J.

AU - Major, Tom

AU - Montgomery, Robert A.

AU - Moseby, Katherine

AU - Meyer, Ninon

AU - Parker, Dan M.

AU - Périquet, Stéphanie

AU - Read, John

AU - Scanlon, Robert J.

AU - Shuttleworth, Craig

AU - Tamessar, Cottrell T.

AU - Taylor, William Andrew

AU - Tuft, Katherine

AU - Upton, Rose M.O.

AU - Valenzuela, Marcia

AU - Witt, Ryan R.

AU - Wüster, Wolfgang

PY - 2020/1/1

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KW - Captive breeding

KW - Contraception

KW - Inbreeding

KW - Invasive species

KW - Translocation

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