Making Broken Pieces Whole Again


Applying Nature's Design. Corridors as a Strategy for Biodiversity Conservation . Anderson, A. B., and C. N. Jenkins , 2006 . Columbia University Press , New York . 241 ( x + 231 ) pp . $74.50 (hardcover) . ISBN 0-231-13410-X . $34.50 (paperback) . ISBN 0-231-13411-8 .

The application of corridors in regional planning has been a central topic in landscape ecology for several years. Although there are hundreds of proposals for corridor initiatives, there are few guidelines for corridor design and implementation. Anderson and Jenkin's book, Applying Nature's Design: Corridors as a Strategy for Biodiversity Conservation explores and expands on the topic of corridors and brings to light empirical examples of corridors in the real world. Two key elements the authors expound on are corridor design and implementation. The authors break down the necessary steps of design including the objectives, location, features, and parcel prioritization of the corridor. These steps are critical because there are great informational needs in terms of implementation. The implementation process then deals with a wide range of issues. Steps must be made to gain economic, political, and social acceptance of the conceptual corridor. In addition, stakeholders must consider who will govern the corridor once it is obtained or created. If the objectives are animal movement, what steps can be made to facilitate these movements. The authors also list potential obstacles to corridor implementation. Finally, the authors take the design and implementation processes and explore eight case studies of corridors in various stages of development.

I found the book entertaining and believe it can be used as a practical guidebook for corridor implementation. The examples portrayed in the book will help others solve problems related to corridor feasibility, function, and implementation. We can learn from the mistakes of others and at the same time gain an understanding of what it takes to bring the concept of corridors into a tangible example of landscape ecology. I believe as the authors that “The success of corridors as a conservation strategy will require long-term commitment and a willingness to tackle complex issues.” In a time when habitat fragmentation is the greatest threat to biodiversity, corridors may make broken pieces of habitat whole once more.