population viability analysis

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A technique that is widely used in conservation biology to identify the threats faced by a species or population, and to estimate the probability that these will lead to extinction. Determining the degree of threat requires knowledge of the ecology and recent history of the species or population in question in order to assess its vulnerability. Account is then taken of interventions that might reduce the likelihood of extinction (e.g. assisted migration, captive breeding, and reintroduction). A model is then constructed to describe the overall situation and the model parameters are determined by field observations, if necessary augmented by experiments. The resulting model is then run several times with variations in the parameters to determine its sensitivity before it can be applied to a real-life situation.

http://www.ramas.com/pva.htm. An introduction to PVA.

Subjects: Ecology and Conservation.

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