Restoration of urban forest remnants is an increasing activity worldwide, but the effects of restoration efforts on local wildlife in urban remnants remain poorly understood. Understanding the benefits of restoration can also be confounded because of difficulties in monitoring the abundance of representative species, or understanding their ecological requirements.
Although invertebrates play a key role in the environment, their conservation and use in environmental monitoring is often considered too difficult and consequently ignored. One of the main problems in dealing with invertebrates is that even limited sampling can yield large numbers of specimens and an enormous diversity of species. Other problems include the taxonomic impediment (i.e.
In New Zealand, the European shrub gorse (Ulex europaeus) is becoming the initial post-disturbance shrub, replacing the native myrtaceous manuka (Leptospermum scoparium) and kanuka (Kunzea ericoides) scrub in this role. Change in the dominant vegetation is likely to affect the native invertebrate community.
We document the rapid recovery of kohekohe (Dysoxylum spectabile) canopy cover following the control of brushtail possums (Trichosurus vulpecula) in Motatau Forest, Northland, New Zealand. Possum trapcatch rates were reduced from 25.6 ± 14.9% (mean ± SE) in 1997 (prior to control) to 2.7 ± 3.1% in 1999, but were little changed in Okaroro, an uncontrolled area nearby. Mean canopy cover scores for kohekohe in Motatau increased from 16.1 ± 4.5 % in 1997 to 52.6 ± 5.2% in 1999, but increased far less at Okaroro, from 42.3 ± 6.3% to 48.0 ± 7.75%.
Monitoring the effect of management in rangelands is an integral part of the process of adaptive management. An understanding of how individual species react to management has two major benefits. Firstly, monitoring, can be simplified by avoiding species which are reacting mostly to other influences, and secondly the abundance of species can be interpreted in a meaningful way for assessing the influence of previous management.