23. Rewilding

  1. David W. Macdonald5 and
  2. Katherine J. Willis6
  1. Chris Sandom1,
  2. C. Josh Donlan2,
  3. Jens-Christian Svenning3 and
  4. Dennis Hansen4

Published Online: 25 FEB 2013

DOI: 10.1002/9781118520178.ch23

Key Topics in Conservation Biology 2

Key Topics in Conservation Biology 2

How to Cite

Sandom, C., Donlan, C. J., Svenning, J.-C. and Hansen, D. (2013) Rewilding, in Key Topics in Conservation Biology 2 (eds D. W. Macdonald and K. J. Willis), John Wiley & Sons, Oxford. doi: 10.1002/9781118520178.ch23

Editor Information

  1. 5

    Wildlife Conservation Research Unit, Department of Zoology, Recanati-Kaplan Centre, Tubney House, University of Oxford, UK

  2. 6

    Biodiversity Institute, Oxford Martin School, Department of Zoology, University of Oxford, UK

Author Information

  1. 1

    Ecoinformatics & Biodiversity Group, Department of Bioscience, Aarhus University, Ny Munkegade 114, Aarhus, Denmark

  2. 2

    Advanced Conservation Strategies, Midway, UT, USA and Cornell University, Department of Ecology & Evolutionary Biology, Ithaca, NY, USA

  3. 3

    Ecoinformatics & Biodiversity Group, Department of Bioscience, Aarhus University, Ny Munkegade 114, Aarhus, Denmark

  4. 4

    Institute of Evolutionary Biology and Environmental Studies, University of Zurich, Winterthurerstrasse 190, Zurich, Switzerland

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 25 FEB 2013
  2. Published Print: 15 APR 2013

ISBN Information

Print ISBN: 9780470658765

Online ISBN: 9781118520178

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Keywords:

  • conservation;
  • restoration ecology;
  • rewilding;
  • scenario planning;
  • three horizons analysis

Summary

Rewilding falls within the general framework of restoration ecology, but differs from a traditional view of habitat restoration and species reintroduction. Four initial steps are required to instigate a rewilding project: identification of the issue of conservation concern; identification of the missing ecological processes; identification of the functional characteristics required; and selection and reintroduction of the most suitable species. One method of progressing rewilding to a mainstream management option is to test a priori hypotheses with quantifiable outcomes within rewilding projects. Scenario planning and the 'three horizons' analysis allow long-term rewilding projects to be considered in three phases: the current, functionally deficient ecosystem in need of restoration; a projected future scenario where the ecosystem is restored to a functional and self-sustaining state; a transition state between the first and third horizons. This chapter explores the proposed restoration of the Caledonian pine forest in the Scottish Highlands as an example.