Biodiversity Science ›› 2019, Vol. 27 ›› Issue (1): 104-113.doi: 10.17520/biods.2018142

• Review • Previous Article     Next Article

Summary comments on assessment methods of ecosystem integrity for national parks

Dai Yunchuan1, 2, Xue Yadong1, 2, Zhang Yunyi3, Li Diqiang1, 2, *()   

  1. 1 Institute of Forest Ecology, Environment and Protection, Chinese Academy of Forestry, Beijing 100091
    2 Key Laboratory of Biodiversity Conservation, State Forestry and Grassland Administration, Beijing 100091
    3 Department of Wildlife Conservation and Nature Reserve Management, State Forestry and Grassland Administration, Beijing 100084
  • Received:2018-05-15 Accepted:2018-08-20 Online:2018-09-06
  • Li Diqiang E-mail:lidq@caf.ac.cn

National parks are one of the foundations of global biodiversity conservation and help protect the ecological environment and biodiversity. Assessing ecosystem integrity in national parks can help understand ecosystem balance, health, and biodiversity status. We introduce three methods to assess ecosystem integrity of national parks: IBI (Index of Biotic Integrity), TLA (Three Level Approach) and EIAF (Ecosystem Integrity Assessment Framework), respectively. IBI relies on high intensity field survey and laboratory analysis. Albeit expensive, time consuming and requiring high level of biological expertise in identifying species, the results are accurate and reliable. TLA, including Remote Assessment, Rapid Assessment and Intensive Assessment, offers great flexibility to assess the integrity of complex ecosystems. EIAF combines the advantages of IBI and TLA, expands the use of indicator species and optimizes scoring statistics. Hence, EIAF is one the most sophisticated assessment methods of ecosystem integrity for national parks. We also discuss some issues such as incomplete assessment indices, single assessment form and subjectivity of assessment methods in current studies. We propose that research on ecosystem integrity of national parks should combine the processes that join nature, economy and society. Such an interdisciplinary approach requires integrated research on sustainable socio-economic development and human health, and explore the relationship between invasive species and ecological environment. We also suggest the need to look for new indicator species that can reflect the state and change trend of ecosystem integrity and thus help develop a standardized assessment system for national parks.

Key words: national park, ecosystem integrity, biodiversity, assessment, index

Table 1

Definitions of ecosystem integrity from different scales"

尺度 Scale 定义 Definition 参考文献 Reference
生物群落
Organism
community
生态系统完整性是支撑和维持生物群落平衡、完整以及适应的能力, 并且这个生物群落与所处的自然生境一样, 具备物种构成、物种多样性以及功能组织等特点。
Ecosystem integrity is the capability of supporting and maintaining a balanced, integrated, adaptive community of organisms having a species composition and functional organization comparable to that of the natural habitat of the region.
Karr & Dudley, 1981; Karr, 1981
优势种
Dominant species
当原生物种成为优势种并主宰整个生物群落时, 生态系统将表现出相对稳定和健康, 即为生态系统完整性。
When native species become dominant species and dominate the entire community, the ecosystem exhibits relative stability and health, namely ecosystem integrity.
Noss, 1990
生态干扰
Ecological
disruption
生态系统完整性是生态系统在特定地理区域的最优化状态, 在这种状态下, 生态系统具备区域自然生境所应包含的全部本土生物多样性和生态学过程, 其生态系统结构、功能以及过程不受人类威胁和损害, 生态系统均在自然变化范围之内并保持良性循环, 且本地物种处在能够持续繁衍的种群水平上。
Ecosystem integrity is defined as a state of ecosystem development that is optimized for its geographic location. In this state, the ecosystem with regional natural habitats contains all native biodiversity and ecological process, its ecosystem structure, function and process are not subject to human threat or damage, ecosystem in the range of natural changes and maintain a virtuous circle, and native species are present at viable population levels.
Woodley, 1993
自组织过程
Self-organization
process
当一个生态系统在不受人类干预的条件下能够继续维持正常的生态功能, 即使当环境遭受人类干扰时, 其生态系统照常能够维持自组织和稳定的状态, 并有足够的能力来继续自组织的发展, 这种自组织能力就叫生态系统完整性。
Under the condition without the intervention of human, the ecosystem can continue to maintain the normal ecological function, even when the environment is disturbed by human, the ecosystem is still able to maintain its self-organization and stable state, and it has enough ability to continue the development of self-organization, this kind of self-organization ability is called ecosystem integrity.
Müller, 1998
自然属性
Natural quality
当一个生态系统具备与自然区域相同的属性特征, 包括丰富的原生物种和丰富的生物群落构成, 即为生态系统完整性。
When an ecosystem has the same attribute characteristics as the natural region, it includes the rich native species and the composition of the biological community, namely ecosystem integrity.
Parks Canada Agency, 2005

Table 2

Summary of indices for ecosystem integrity assessment of national parks (Timko & Satterfield, 2008; Timko & Innes, 2009; Caniani, 2016; Brown & Williams, 2016; Troy & Yolanda, 2017)"

组成 Composition 备选指标 Standby indices 备选亚指标 Standby sub-indices
景观条件
Landscape context
景观结构
Landscape structure
景观连接度、土地利用指数、缓冲指数、空间异质性、斑块大小、形状和分布、破碎度
Landscape connectivity, land use index, buffer index, spatial heterogeneity, patch size, shape and distribution, and fragmentation.
景观状况
Landscape condition
土地利用强度、土地利用类型、植被覆盖度
Land use intensity, land use type, and vegetation coverage.
生物条件
Biological condition
生态系统与分区
Ecosystem and zones
群落范围、群落构成、群落动态、营养结构、物理结构
Community range, community composition, community dynamics, nutrition structure, physical structure.
物种/种群
Species/population
物种分布范围、种群动态、种群结构、物种丰富度、原生物种、外来物种、形态变异性、遗传多样性、栖息地适宜度
Species distribution, population dynamics, population structure, species richness, native species, alien species, morphological variability, genetic diversity, and habitat suitability.
种群动态测定
Population dynamic measurement
指示物种的死亡率、出生率、生存力
The mortality, birth rate, and population viability of indicator species.
演替/退化
Succession/degeneration
自然灾害干扰频率和程度、植被年龄群落分布
The frequency and degree of natural disaster interference, and the distribution of vegetation age group.
有机体状况
Organic condition
生理状态、疾病症状、疾病迹象
Physical condition, disease symptoms, and signs of illness.
理化性质
Physiochemical properties
空气质量和气候条件
Air quality and climatic
conditions
基础气候数据、极端气候发生频率
Basic climatic data, and extreme climate occurrence frequency.
土壤质量
Soil quality
生物结皮、土壤侵蚀、土壤退化、土壤污染
Biological crust, soil erosion, soil degradation, and soil pollution.
水质
Water quality
水温、浑浊度、pH值、电导率、溶解性固体、悬浮性固体、总氮、总有机碳、溶解氧、生化需氧量、化学需氧量、细菌总数、大肠菌群
Water temperature, turbidity, pH, electrical conductivity, dissolved solids, suspended solids, total nitrogen, total organic carbon, dissolved oxygen, biochemical oxygen demand, chemical oxygen demand, total bacterial count, and coliform.
土壤养分测定
Soil fertility determination
氮、磷、钙等养分含量
Content of nitrogen, phosphorus, calcium and other nutrients.
无机物和有机化学
Inorganic and
organic chemistry
金属、有机化合物及其他痕量元素含量
Content of metals, organic compounds and other trace elements.
化学参数
Chemical parameters
pH值、盐度值、溶氧量、有机质含量
pH value, salinity value, dissolved oxygen, and content of organic matter.
生态过程
Ecological
processes
能量流
Energy flow
初级生产、净生态系统生产、增长率
Primary production, net ecosystem production, and growth rate.
物质流和有机碳循环
Material flow and
organic carbon cycle
氮磷循环、其他营养循环
Nitrogen and phosphorus cycle, and other nutrient cycle.
水文地貌
Hydrological
features
地表径流、地下径流
Surface runoff,
underground runoff
地表径流模式、地下径流模式、水动力学、盐分特征、蓄水量
Surface runoff model, underground runoff model, hydrodynamics, salt characteristics, and water storage capacity.
动态结构特征
Dynamic structural feature
海峡或海岸线形特征、河漫滩分布区域及范围、水生栖息地特征
Channel or coast line features, the distribution area and range of flood plain, and aquatic habitat characteristics.
沉积物和物质输送
Sediment and material transport
沉积物补给、沉积物运动、粒径分布特征、其他物质通量
Sediment supply, sediment movement, the distribution characteristics of particle size, and other material flux.
自然干扰
Natural disturbance
频率、强度、持续时长
Frequency, intensity, duration
火灾、虫害、洪涝、病原体
Fire, insects, floods, and pathogens.

Table 3

Differences of each level of Three Level Approach to conduct ecosystem integrity assessment (Stevens & Olsen, 1999; Blocksom et al, 2002; USEPA, 2006; Michael et al, 2011)"

远程型评价 Remote assessment 快速型评价 Rapid assessment 密集型评价 Intensive assessment
方法
Method
使用地理信息系统(GIS)和遥感数据
Using Geographical Information System (GIS) and the remote sensing data.
使用相对简单且容易获得的实地调研指标
Using relatively simple and easily obtained field survey indicators
使用相对详细且可量化的实地调研指标
Using relatively detailed and quantifiable field survey indicators
数据源
Data sources
遥感影像
Remote sensing data
实地调研指标
Field survey indicators
实地调研指标
Field survey indicators
指标
Indicators
景观指数、土地覆盖、土地利用变化、路网密度、大坝数量及分布区域、不透水面面积比例等。
Landscape index, land cover, land use change, road network density, number of dams, distribution area of dams, area proportion of impervious surface, etc.
景观连接度、路口交叉数、植被结构、外来物种入侵、森林地表状况、水文、土壤、沟渠、外来污染源输入等。
Landscape connectivity, intersection number, vegetation structure, alien species invasion, forest surface condition, hydrology, soil, ditch, pollution source input, etc.
景观连接度、植物区系质量指数、生物完整性植被指数、植被结构、水文、土壤钙铝比值等。
Landscape connectivity, quality index of flora, vegetation index of biological integrity, vegetation structure, hydrology, ratio of soil calcium and aluminum, etc.
功能
Function
识别优先保护区域、分析景观生态类型目前状况和发展趋势、监控目标生态系统的恢复等。
Identifying priority protection area, analyzing the current situation and development trend of landscape ecological type, monitoring the restoration of target ecosystem, etc.
完善生态系统完整性评分报告、监控或管理生态恢复项目的实施情况、为流域景观规划提供指导、为生态保护提供参考等。
Improving the ecosystem integrity score report, monitoring or managing the implementation of ecological restoration project, providing guidance for watershed landscape planning, providing reference for ecological conservation, etc.
详细的实地测量和统计抽样设计可提高生态系统完整性评价的准确性、进一步完善生态系统完整性评分报告、监控或管理生态恢复项目的实施情况等。
Detailed field measurement and statistical sampling design can improve the accuracy of ecosystem integrity evaluation. Improving the ecosystem integrity score report, monitoring or managing the implementation situation of the ecological restoration project, etc.
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