Resource Database

©Danilo Lima, Agripalm Ambiental

The RRC database contains a wide variety of resources and publications related to ecological restoration, and we are actively working to expand this collection. It is our aim to serve as the principal clearinghouse for information and tools to support the work of researchers, practitioners, land managers, educators, students, and anyone else interested in restoration. Use the filter tool below to search the database by title, author, resource type, keyword, or any combination of these factors.

Although SER does review all entries in the database for relevance and quality, these resources have not been rigorously reviewed or extensively vetted in every case, and SER therefore makes no claim as to their accuracy or accordance with generally accepted principles in the field. The database is provided as a resource for visitors to the SER website, and it is ultimately left to the individual user to make their own determinations about the quality and veracity of a given publication or resource.

If there is a resource we missed, please let us know! We are interested in current books, articles, technical documents, videos, and other resources that are directly relevant to ecological restoration science, practice or policy, as well as resources treating the social, cultural and economic dimensions of restoration.

Publication Year:
Resource Type
Keyword
Title
Author

 

Celebrating 25 Years of Action for Biodiversity

Abstract:

In celebration of the International Day for Biological Diversity on 22 May 2018, Wiley has put together a special collection of over 100 research articles from 12 journals highlighting important contributions to advancing the understanding, protection, and preservation of biodiversity. Articles come from numerous fields in the natural and social sciences. They are free to share, read and download for a limited time.

Resource Type:Peer-reviewed Article
Publication Date: various

Reforestation, Nurseries, and Genetic Resources

Abstract:

The Reforestation, Nurseries, and Genetics Resources (RNGR) website is a popular resource for those who grow or outplant native plants for reforestation, restoration, or conservation. The site hosts a national directory of forestry and conservation nurseries, a calendar of relevant events, and access to a repository of approximately 15,000 articles  (searchable and free to download). The site also includes pages specific to tropical plants, tribal nurseries, and seed.

Resource Type:Web-based Resource
Publication Date: Ongoing

Roadside revegetation: An integrated approach to establishing native plants and pollinator habitat

Abstract:

The roadsides of the United States play an important role in the conservation of declining wild pollinators and in supporting the health of managed pollinators. The An Integrated Approach to Establishing Native Plants and Pollinator Habitat program provides current best practices for planning, designing, and implementing a revegetation project that will also create habitat for pollinators. The web resource offers a comprehensive Roadside Revegetation Report detailing the complete roadside revegetation process, from project initiation, through monitoring and management. It is also home to the Ecoregional Revegetation Application online tool and a Roadside Revegetation online library.

Resource Type:Web-based Resource
Publication Date: Ongoing

SER Certified Ecological Restoration Practitioner (CERP) Program

Abstract:

SER’s Certified Ecological Restoration Practitioner (CERP) Program encourages a high professional standard for those who are designing, implementing, overseeing, and monitoring restoration projects throughout the world.

Relevance for the Short Term Action Plan for Ecosystem Restoration:
By developing criteria for restoration practitioners to be approved for CERP, and continuing education requirements for maintenance or certification, the CERP program contributes to activity B10. Certified practitioners, in turn, can contribute to activities C1, C3, C4, and C5 regarding restoration planning and implementation, and activities D1, D2, and D3 regarding project monitoring.

Resource Type:Web-based Resource
Publication Date: Ongoing

Restoration Resource Center (RRC)

Abstract:

SER’s Restoration Resource Center (RRC) provides hundreds of examples of restoration projects, as well links to science, technology and traditional knowledge about restoration from around the world. A wide variety of other resources to assist with restoration planning can also be found on the SER website.

Relevance for the Short Term Action Plan for Ecosystem Restoration:
The RRC contains many resources relevant to Group of activities C and D. Of particular importance for is a restoration directory of expertise, and a resource database that can be filtered by publication year, resources type, title, author, and keyword. A project database provides many examples of restoration implementation (C5), and contribute to sharing lessons learned, in line with activity D3.

Resource Type:Web-based Resource
Publication Date: Ongoing

Forest and Landscape Restoration Mechanism (FLRM) Knowledge Base

Abstract:

This knowledge base provides access to a comprehensive database of resources related to forest and landscape restoration in a wide range of aspects. More specifically, it provides access to an online user-friendly platform where users can find guidance from planning and implementation to the ongoing management and monitoring of a restoration project.

Relevance for the Short Term Action Plan for Ecosystem Restoration:
This resource includes information on many aspects of FLR including assessment of degradation / restoration opportunities (activities A1 and A2), governance (activities B1 and B6), and implementation (activity C5), and monitoring (Group D). Documents such as Global guidelines for the restoration of degraded forests and landscapes in drylands, outline monitoring and evaluation programs including assessment (D1), adaptive management (D2), and sharing lessons learned (D3).

Resource Type:Web-based Resource
Publication Date: Ongoing

Bonn Challenge Barometer

Abstract:

The Bonn Challenge Barometer is a progress tracking protocol for the Bonn Challenge, a global effort to bring 150 million hectares of degraded and deforested land into restoration by 2020 and 350 million by 2030. It aims to provide a flexible framework for the development of indicators by jurisdictions who pledged to the Bonn Challenge and to report on progress on various dimensions of Forest and Landscape Restoration (FLR).

Relevance for the Short Term Action Plan for Ecosystem Restoration:
By providing a common platform for countries to report on the outcomes of their FLR strategies along standard criteria, the Bonn Challenge Barometer allows for the sharing of lessons learned and exchange of information, in line with Activity D3.

Resource Type:Web-based Resource
Publication Date: Ongoing

Biodiversity Indicators Partnership (BIP)

Abstract:

The Biodiversity Indicators Partnership (BIP) is a global initiative to promote and coordinate the development and delivery of biodiversity indicators for use by the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) and other biodiversity-related conventions, the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES), the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and national and regional agencies. The website allows users to browse a range of indicators related to Aichi Biodiversity Targets, as well as a library of resources for the development of national-scale indicators.

Relevance for the Short Term Action Plan for Ecosystem Restoration:
The BIP resource provides tools to identify relevant indicators for assessing multiple restoration objectives directly relevant to CBD goals and targets (D1), to test and refine indicators (D2), and to develop monitoring and reporting systems (D3).

Resource Type:Web-based Resource
Publication Date: Ongoing

US Army Corps of Engineers Ecosystem Restoration Gateway

Abstract:

Ecosystem Restoration is one of the primary missions of the Civil Works program. The purpose of Civil Works ecosystem restoration activities is to restore significant ecosystem function, structure, and dynamic processes that have been degraded. Ecosystem restoration efforts involve a comprehensive examination of the problems contributing to the system degradation, and the development of alternative means for their solution. The intent of restoration is to partially or fully reestablish the attributes of a naturalistic, functioning, and self-regulating system.

Resource Type:Web-based Resource
Publication Date: N/A

US Army Corps of Engineers Management Measures Digital Library

Abstract:

The purpose of this site is to identify and describe examples of selected ecosystem engineering features or management measures and their components. This site is not intended to be a design manual, but rather to provide sufficient information to stimulate plan formulation and assist planners in identifying what’s out there and to “visualize” how a management measure or engineering feature may be applicable to their project.

Resource Type:Web-based Resource
Publication Date: N/A

Ecological Management & Restoration (EMR) Project Summaries

Abstract:

The Australasian journal Ecological Management & Restoration (EMR) is open to submission of short summaries (or groups of linked summaries) of 300-700 words on any interesting ecosystem rehabilitation or restoration project in Australia that is already showing good or promising results. These project summaries are published on an open-access website managed by the journal’s editorial team. They are not a peer-reviewed manuscript type in EMR, but are checked for clarity and content by the project summaries editor.

Resource Type:Web-based Resource
Publication Date: N/A

Restoration Evidence

Abstract:

Restoration Evidence is a free resource developed by the Endangered Landscapes Programme that aims to make ecological restoration more effective by providing evidence about the effectiveness of specific restoration actions. The searchable website contains summaries of scientific research on the effects of actions to restore habitats, in order to support decision making. Actions are categorized by the target habitat or species. Summaries of evidence are available for the ecological restoration of forests, peatland vegetation, shrublands and heathlands, and farmland, and for restoration actions aimed at enhancing populations of birds, amphibians, bees, bats and primates.

Relevance for the Short Term Action Plan for Ecosystem Restoration:
This resource is particularly relevant for Activity C1 in that it helps assess the ecological appropriateness of different restoration measures for different ecosystems or particular taxonomic groups. Its grounding in scientific research also makes us of existing science, in line with Activity C5.

Resource Type:Web-based Resource
Publication Date: launched in 2018

Rewilding complex ecosystems

Abstract:

Humans have encroached upon a majority of Earth’s lands. The current extinction crisis is a testament to human impacts on wilderness. If there is any hope of retaining a biodiverse planetary system, we must begin to learn how to coexist with, and leave space for, other species. The practice of “rewilding” has emerged as a method for returning wild lands, and wildness, to landscapes we have altered. Perino et al. review this concept and present a framework for implementing it broadly and in a way that considers ongoing human interaction.

Resource Type:Peer-reviewed Article
Publication Date: 26 April 2019

Germination strategies of selected Kuwaiti desert plants and their implications for dryland restoration

Abstract:

Desert plants use a number of strategies to survive in arid environments, which are characterized by extremely high temperature, intense radiation, strong winds, low and erratic rainfall, high evaporation rates, soil erosion, and lower nutrient availability. These species produce certain structures that help in seed dispersal to suitable microsites and/or regulate their germination response to prevailing conditions. Some species also produce heteromorphic seeds or maintain aerial seed banks to cope with extreme environmental conditions. The adaptive mechanisms in three of Kuwait’s native plants, namely, Farsetia aegyptia Turra (presence mucilage), Seidlitzia rosmarinus Boiss. (presence of wings) and Calligonum comosum (heteromorphic seeds) were studied and their germination behavior under different temperature and light regimes and elevated salinity conditions was determined in the present study. Irrespective of incubation temperature regimes and photoperiods, de-winged S. rosmarinus seeds germinated better (76-88% total germination) than intact seeds (24-41%) with the low temperature regime (20/15 °C) resulting in 10% higher germination (85-88% vs. 76-78%). Although the presence of mucilage and thermoperiod did not affect the germination, longer storage significantly increased the germinabilty of C. comosum seeds. Increasing salinity levels decreased the germination of all three species, but ungerminated seeds were able to germinate when the salinity stress was alleviated. These mechanisms allow them to minimize the impact of adverse habitat conditions and maintain seed viability. The implications of these adaptive mechanisms for dryland restoration will be discussed in this paper.

Resource Type:SER2019
Publication Date: 2019
Pre-approved for CECs under SER's CERP program

The importance of root hydraulic function for the survival of planted seedlings in dry conditions

Abstract:

Root function and growth is critically important to the survival and performance of planted seedlings, especially in ecosystems with seasonal dry periods. In many restoration sites, limited access to soil moisture has the potential to reduce outplanting success. Root hydraulic conductance, Kr, measures the capacity of a plant’s root system to supply the shoot with water. Kr can be impacted by planting practices, environmental conditions, and subsequent seedling growth. Using techniques from plant hydraulic physiology, we conducted a greenhouse experiment to measure changes in root hydraulic conductance in Douglas-fir seedlings (Pseudotsuga menziesii) after transplanting. Douglas-fir is a key forest species in the western United States and planted Douglas-fir seedlings must survive summers with very little rainfall. We found that Kr increased linearly with seedling leaf area in well-watered conditions. However, in water-limited conditions, Kr did not increase as seedlings grew new needles, which in turn reduced photosynthesis and lowered total seedling biomass. These results indicate that water limitation changes root function even before the seedlings experience xylem cavitation and in ways that impact the water supply to the shoot. From these conclusions, we emphasize the importance of restoration practices that can mitigate water stress after planting, such as the timing of planting, site preparation methods that reduce competition for soil water, and nursery growing and handling protocols that promote high capacity for root growth. Careful attention to root quality, understanding root function, and taking actions to ensure root growth will be important for the success of restoration with planted seedlings.

Resource Type:SER2019
Publication Date: 2019
Pre-approved for CECs under SER's CERP program

Using dispersal and germination life traits of native vegetation to promote ecological restoration in southern New Caledonia

Abstract:

New Caledonia is considered to be one of the main “hotspots” of biological conservation. Its exceptional level of endemism is increasingly threatened by the expansion of human activities. One of the most important threats is habitat fragmentation due in part to fires and mine exploration on ultramafic massifs that erodes habitat quality. Natural environments affected must be restored to maintain the ecosystem services they provide. Over the past 40 years, revegetation techniques have aimed to reduce the impacts of erosion. However ecological restoration has only been pioneered in the past 15 years. Present research compliments previous studies and aims to (1) characterize dispersal and germination of plant species found in early successional maquis and forest mosaics on the Goro plateau in southern New Caledonia, (2) evaluate the trajectory of mine revegetation plantations based on the life traits of the species used from surrounding vegetation. A database was constructed and presents data dealing with 41 life-traits of 407 taxa found in the vegetation mosaic. In addition, an assessment restoration progress using the five-star recovery system developed by SER was conducted from surveys and measurements of both planted and colonizing vegetation. Finally, inventories of surrounding natural vegetation provided details of their structure and composition that highlight the ecological succession and permitted establishment of a local indigenous reference ecosystem. Recommendations based on results were provided to managers to assist in implementing ecological continuities projects including a list of candidate species to prioritize in future restoration programs.

Resource Type:
Publication Date: 2019
Pre-approved for CECs under SER's CERP program

International standards for the practice of ecological restoration, 2nd edition

Abstract:

The second edition of the International Standards for the Practice of Ecological Restoration was released on September 27, 2019, in Cape Town, South Africa at SER’s 8th World Conference on Ecological Restoration. This groundbreaking publication provides updated and expanded guidance on the practice of ecological restoration, clarifies the breadth of ecological restoration and allied environmental repair activities, and includes ideas and input from a diverse international group of restoration scientists and practitioners.

Relevance for the Short Term Action Plan for Ecosystem Restoration:
The Standards provide information on the planning, implementation, monitoring and maintenance of ecological restoration projects in all types of ecosystems worldwide, providing key guidance for Groups of activities C and D. This resource stresses the importance of early, genuine and active engagement with stakeholders and emphasizes the use of appropriate native species in line with activity C1. Guidance can also be applied to allied restorative activities, including a wide array of nature-based solutions, in line with C2. Section 3 outlines a series of steps used to develop clear objectives and tasks for each step of a plan, in line with activities, C3 and C4. An appendix provides information on the selection of seeds and other propagules in the context of fragmentation and climate change, helpful for activity C2. The Standards also contain guidance for the monitoring of restoration projects. This guidance includes a tiered system from 1 to 5 stars to evaluate progress of a restoration project (D1) along a trajectory toward a reference model by assessing six key ecological attributes: species composition, structural diversity, ecosystem function, external exchanges, absence of threats, and physical conditions. An ‘ecological recovery wheel’, available online and as an Android app provides a framework to communicate restoration progress (D3). The SER Standards also provide a sample 'Social Benefits Wheel' to help assess and communicate the delivery of ecosystem services by restoration projects, in line with activities D1 and D3.

Resource Type:Technical Document
Publication Date: 2019

Testing for evolutionary change in restoration: A genomic comparison between ex situ, native, and commercial seed sources of Helianthus maximiliani

Abstract:

North America’s grasslands are one of the most globally imperiled ecosystems and thus need restoration strategies that maintain evolutionary potential for persistence under rapidly changing conditions. However, the maintenance of evolutionary potential requires genetic variation for adaptive evolution. Thus, increasing our understanding for how preservation and propagation may modify genetic variation of material used in restoration will illustrate the important role evolutionary change may have influencing short- and long-term restoration success. A combination of evolutionary factors, including selection, demographic variation, and founder effects will influence the amount and type of genetic variation available in restoration material. Intentional or unintentional selection of restoration material may contribute to the evolution of seed sources, impacting performance and evolutionary potential following restoration. We examined genomic variation in Helianthus maximiliani, a perennial sunflower distributed across the Great Plains of North America that is commonly used in grassland restorations. We use next-gen sequencing (GBS) approaches to evaluate genomic variation within and among a combination of seed sources; including historical ex situ collections, native populations, and commercial seed sources. Our data suggest that genetic differences have evolved across seed source types. In particular, commercial seed sources exhibit significant genetic differentiation from both ex situ and native seed sources. Future work aims to tease apart the impact different evolutionary processes have had on the genomic structure of the different seed source populations. This work will include an evaluation of whether phenotypic variation in traits important to adaptation have evolved over time and in response to propagation.

Resource Type:
Publication Date: 2019
Pre-approved for CECs under SER's CERP program

State of the research: Using activated carbon in herbicide protection pods to simultaneously reseed desirable species and treat invasive annual weeds

Abstract:

Restoration of desirable plants can be challenging in dryland settings, and the challenge is compounded when competing exotic species are present. Pre-emergent herbicides are frequently used to reduce competition from exotic annual plants prior to seed-based restoration. After application, reseeding desirable species usually must wait up to a year or more until herbicide toxicity has waned, and this herbicide-fallow period necessitates additional site visits to reseed. Also, if rapid annual reinvasion occurs, there may be little benefit from herbicide application. Herbicide protection pod (HPP) technology allows for simultaneous seeding and herbicide application by protecting desirable seeds inside pods or pellets containing activated carbon, thereby eliminating herbicide-fallow periods and allowing for single-entry restoration approaches. This technology has shown promise in multiple laboratory and field experiments to date, but many important questions remain and are under investigation. We present a review of the technology, then summarize recent results and ongoing research with emphasis on 1) optimizing HPP efficacy via modifying size and formulation, 2) comparing different delivery methods, and 3) scaling up production. Optimal HPP formulation and geometry depends on seed size and species, and refinement can decrease cost and improve efficiency. Traditional seed-delivery systems may need modification to ensure maximum performance of this technology. Industrial mass-production will be crucial to scaling up but presents challenges in maintaining product quality. We highlight additional opportunities and challenges and propose goals and priorities for ongoing research of this developing technology, which could prove to be transformative for restoration of invaded drylands.

Resource Type:
Publication Date: 2019
Pre-approved for CECs under SER's CERP program

Tropical savanna restoration by direct seeding: Steps forward

Abstract:

International commitments set a target for Brazil to restore 12 million hectares of natural habitat of which 5 million hectares are within the Cerrado (savanna) region. To achieve such commitments, we need restoration methods that are cost-effective and practical at a large scale. Since 2012, we have tested and developed direct seeding techniques to decrease costs and improve restoration success on grasslands and savannas. More than 200 hectares have been direct seeded to restore areas in central Brazil. The direct seeding techniques have been applied by an increasing number of private and public companies to promote restoration. We were able to establish more than 70 native grasses, shrubs and trees species; and significantly changed soil cover from exotic to native species. However, many challenges persist, especially the control of African grass species, widely introduced for pasturelands that become aggressive invaders. We tested mechanical control of invasive grasses (IG) through repetitive soil plowing before direct seeding and the introduction of different functional groups. A mixture of native species with perennial grasses and fast-growing shrub and tree species improves restoration success, especially in less fertile soils where IG fitness is reduced. Mechanical control decreases IG but does not eliminate them, and it causes severe soil disturbances. The use of chemical control, even inside legally protected areas, is highly recommended to improve restoration success in tropical grasslands and savannas where shading by thick tree layer would eliminate IG but create inadequate restoration endpoints. Improving native species harvesting and seeding techniques is also essential.

Resource Type:
Publication Date: 2019
Pre-approved for CECs under SER's CERP program

A decade of direct seeding for forest restoration in the Brazilian Amazon, Cerrado, and Atlantic biomes

Abstract:

South Amazon forests have been highly deforested since the 1970’s. The Y Ikatu Xingu watershed campaign direct seeded 5 000 ha of forests from 2006 up to 2018. Direct seeding is considered a feasible, inexpensive, and effective method for ecological restoration with advantages that facilitate large-scale use, such as mechanized operations. Nevertheless, little is known about the successional trajectory of tropical forests restored through direct seeding. We sampled 72 direct seeded sites (1-10-y old), three seedling planted sites, and six natural regeneration sites, along a latitudinal gradient of 600 km in the state of Mato Grosso, Brazil. Sites began dominated by herbs and shrubs (green manure, short cycle leguminous), followed by 1 to 5 light-demanding tree species, while slow-growing species were present in the understory. After four years, direct-seeded sites formed a multi-layered canopy and were starting to be colonized by non-planted species. We sampled 90 species from the 152 seeded plus 68 colonizer species. Seeded communities present more orthodox, wind-dispersed seeds than reference forests. However, animal-dispersed and recalcitrant seed traits are found in colonizers. Canopy frequently closed (80%), forming a tall secondary forest with high height-to-diameter ratio trees that do not bifurcate in the first 3 years. Broadcast seeding sites had higher seedling and sapling densities than sites that received other restoration methods. In conclusion, direct seeding was a successful method for tropical forest restoration, promoting a structure that was more like resilient natural regeneration sites than to non-resilient natural regeneration sites and seedling planting sites.

Resource Type:
Publication Date: 2019
Pre-approved for CECs under SER's CERP program

Rate of forest recovery after fire exclusion on anthropogenic savannas in the Democratic Republic of Congo

Abstract:

Deforestation in the tropics is often followed by the creation of anthropogenic savannas used for animal husbandry. By discontinuing burning regimes, forests may recolonize the savanna and carbon stocksmay recover. However, little is known about the success and speed of tropical forest recovery, while such information is vital for a better quantification of efforts to reduce emissions from deforestation and forest degradation (REDD+) as well as supporting Forest LandscapeRestoration (FLR) practices. Therefore, we designed a forest regeneration experiment within a savanna patch in the Mayombe hills(Democratic Republic of Congo), by discontinuing the annual burning regime in an 88 ha exclosure since 2005. 101 permanent inventory plots (40.4 ha) were installed in 2010 and remeasured in 2014. Tree species were classified as savanna or forest specialists. We estimate a forest specialist encroachment rate of 9 stems ha−1 yr−1 and a savanna specialist disappearance rate of 16 stems ha−1 yr−1. Average diameter of forest specialists did not change due to an increasing influx of recruits, while average diameter of savanna trees increased due to decreasing recruitment. Carbon stored by forest specialists increased from 3.12 to 5.60 Mg C ha−1, suggesting a forest carbon recovery rate of 0.62 Mg C ha−1 yr−1. Using the average carbon stock of 19 nearby mature rainforestplots as a reference, we estimate a total forest carbon recovery time of at least 150 years. The Manzonzi exclosure may potentially become an important reference experiment to quantify REDD+ schemes in Central Africa. Furthermore, this natural regeneration experiment demonstrates how carbon sequestration and biodiversity conservation can go hand-in-hand. However, more censuses are needed to better quantify the long-term carbon recovery trajectory within the protected area.

Resource Type:Peer-reviewed Article
Publication Date: 2019

Seed networks for upscaling native seed supply in Brazil

Abstract:

Brazil has committed to restore 12 million hectares of degraded lands by 2030, however, there is a shortage of native seed supply. In this research, we assess the outcomes of six Brazilian seed networks in the Amazon, Cerrado, and Atlantic Forest Biomes, and estimate the plant material demanded to achieve the national restoration goal. Seed networks have operated through non-governmental and governmental organisations that link local communities who have produced seeds with restoration markets. Overall, these initiatives have produced 386 tonnes of seeds and engaged 1,046 collectors over the last 10 years. Each collector produced on average 45.5 kg of seed per year, receiving approximately US$270 yearly as cash income, regardless of the year, network or region. We also estimated – based on 2,152 germination tests of 122 species – a germination rate of 39.9 ± 7.9%. Running a Markov Chain Monte Carlo with 10,000 rounds we found a minimum germination rate of 17.75% for the mix of 122 species. Our finds show implementing Brazil’s targets will require from 18,876 to 88,861 tonnes of seeds, and between 9,796 and 14,994 million seedlings depending on the restoration methods adopted. Although there are caveats in these estimates because of lack of knowledge about seed ecology and the complex field interactions and responses, restoration clearly requires a broader investment compared with the current structure and technology available. Although the community-based model is a potential productive arrangement, for spreading initiatives it is essential to overcome the limitations in knowledge and uncertain policies and markets.

 

Resource Type:
Publication Date: 2019
Pre-approved for CECs under SER's CERP program

Overcoming limiting factors to seedling establishment: Physiological, morphological, spatial, and temporal tactics

Abstract:

Using nursery-produced seedlings for restoration helps achieve on-site objectives by increasing the trajectory of ecosystem services compared with natural regeneration. This function, however, is only possible with quality seedlings that are matched to the objectives with the appropriate morphology, physiology, and genetics. Within the nursery culture environment, it can be possible to express seedling traits that favor establishment on outplanting sites that have a myriad of limiting factors such as depleted soil moisture and competing vegetation. Simple morphological traits that include longer root systems or greater height are logical targets in such instances. One critical aspect to quality seedling attributes that is less understood, however, is how a seedling functions—its physiology. In a sense, morphological attributes are just proxies for physiological functioning. But how do you, or how can you, condition a seedling to “function” for a specific purpose? Nursery culture has the opportunity to lay the foundational building blocks—i.e. quality—on which seedlings rely on for establishment and growth. It stands to reason, that seedling physiological conditioning can offer gains in potentially limiting outplanting conditions. Unfortunately, the direct links from nursery culture to physiology on the outplanting site are not fully realized. Our research explores the intersection of building target seedlings by varying nursery culture to match outplanting conditions with a better understanding of morpho-physiological functioning.

Resource Type:
Publication Date: 2019
Pre-approved for CECs under SER's CERP program

Maximizing seedling outplanting success with organic soil amendments

Abstract:

Soil organic matter (SOM) is critical for ensuring both forest soil and tree health. Although soil organic matter represents only 5% of the soil, it is critical for cation exchange capacity, water and nutrient retention, and overall site productivity.  However, increased populations and a changing climate have contributed to the loss or degradation of SOM. It is critical to understand how soil texture and the type of organic amendment may interact to alter soil processes before planting for site restoration.  Restoring organic carbon can help reverse soil productivity declines and improve plant establishment and growth. Application of organic matter to soils can supply needed plant nutrients and can improve water holding capacity to make soils more resilient to drought or flooding. Biosolids or manure additions rapidly release nutrients and can enhance plant growth in the short-term. Biochar additions, while low in nutrients, offer a stable source of soil carbon and can increase water and nutrient holding capacity. Sawdust or wood chips is another option for amending forest sites, but it is often surface applied and can decompose quickly. Organic amendments are more effective at increasing understory plant production rather than tree seedling or older tree growth, but the alteration of water holding capacity may reduce the risk of insect or disease attack.

Resource Type:
Publication Date: 2019
Pre-approved for CECs under SER's CERP program

Science framework for conservation and restoration of the sagebrush biome: Linking the Department of the Interior’s Integrated Rangeland Fire Management Strategy to long-term strategic conservation actions. Part 2. Management applications

Abstract:

The Science Framework is intended to link the Department of the Interior’s Integrated Rangeland Fire Management Strategy with long-term strategic conservation and restoration actions in the sagebrush biome. The focus is on sagebrush (Artemisia spp.) ecosystems and sagebrush dependent species with an emphasis on Greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus). Part 1 of the Science Framework, published in 2017, provides the scientific information and decision-support tools for prioritizing areas for management and determining effective management strategies across the sagebrush biome. Part 2, this document, provides the management considerations for applying the information and tools in Part 1. Part 2 is intended to facilitate implementation of resource management priorities and use of management strategies that increase ecosystem resilience to disturbance and resistance to nonnative invasive annual grasses. The target audience of Part 2 is field managers, resource specialists, and regional and national-level managers. The topics addressed in this volume include adaptive management and monitoring, climate adaptation, wildfire and vegetation management, nonnative invasive plant management, application of National Seed Strategy concepts, livestock grazing management, wild horse and burro considerations, and integration and tradeoffs. Geospatial data, maps, and models for the Science Framework are provided through the U.S. Geological Survey’s ScienceBase database and Bureau of Land Management’s Landscape Approach Data Portal. The Science Framework is intended to be adaptive and will be updated as additional data become available on other values and species at risk. It is anticipated that the Science Framework will be widely used to: (1) inform emerging strategies to conserve sagebrush ecosystems, sagebrush dependent species, and human uses of the sagebrush system; and (2) assist managers in prioritizing and planning on-the-ground restoration and mitigation actions across the sagebrush biome.

Resource Type:Technical Document
Publication Date: 2019

Plant Biology Special Issue: Natural Capital from Native Seeds

Abstract:

The papers in this Special Issue are broadly clustered around the following topics: technical advances, seed quality for restoration, methods to improve seed germination in dormant seed lots, demands imposed by changing environmental conditions, and the role of national policies in the use of native seed.

Resource Type:Journal Special Issue
Publication Date: 2019

Using naturally occurring climate resilient corals to construct bleaching-resistant nurseries

Abstract:

Ecological restoration of forests, meadows, reefs, or other foundational ecosystems during climate change depends on the discovery and use of individuals able to withstand future conditions. For coral reefs, climate-tolerant corals might not remain tolerant in different environments because of widespread environmental adjustment of coral physiology and symbionts. Here, we test if parent corals retain their heat tolerance in nursery settings, if simple proxies predict successful colonies, and if heat-tolerant corals suffer lower growth or survival in normal settings. Before the 2015 natural bleaching event in American Samoa, we set out 800 coral fragments from 80 colonies of four species selected by prior tests to have a range of intraspecific natural heat tolerance. After the event, nursery stock from heat-tolerant parents showed two to three times less bleaching across species than nursery stock from less tolerant parents. They also retained higher individual genetic diversity through the bleaching event than did less heat-tolerant corals. The three best proxies for thermal tolerance were response to experimental heat stress, location on the reef, and thermal microclimate. Molecular biomarkers were also predictive but were highly species specific. Colony genotype and symbiont genus played a similarly strong role in predicting bleaching. Combined, our results show that selecting for host and symbiont resilience produced a multispecies coral nursery that withstood multiple bleaching events, that proxies for thermal tolerance in restoration can work across species and be inexpensive, and that different coral clones within species reacted very differently to bleaching.

Resource Type:Peer-reviewed Article
Publication Date: 2019

Adapting land restoration to a changing climate: Embracing the knowns and unknowns

Abstract:

Even if bold efforts to curb climate change materialize, people will still need to adapt to the changes that have already happened, and these are projected to intensify in the future. And land restoration should be envisioned in this context; one of change and unpredictability, and the need to adapt. In this brief, we discuss the knowns and unknowns about land restoration and societal adaptation under climate change. We include a list of questions that can help navigate the knowns and unknowns related to land restoration and people’s adaptation in particular contexts.

Resource Type:White Paper
Publication Date: 2019

UNCCD Knowledge Hub

Abstract:

The United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD) is a key global authority on scientific and technical knowledge in the areas of desertification, land degradation and drought (DLDD), and on the negative effects of DLDD on productive land and relevant ecosystems. Through its Knowledge Hub, the UNCCD provides a framework for organizing scientific and technical information around these topics as well as access to best practices relevant to Land Degradation Neutrality (LDN) and Sustainable Land Management (SLM).

Relevance for the Short Term Action Plan for Ecosystem Restoration:
Reports, such as Achieving Land Degradation Neutrality at the Country Level, outline the steps needed to assess land degradation (A1) and identify the key drivers of degradation (A6). The SLM section also includes guidance and best practices relevant to assessing sustainable productive practices in activity A6. The Country Information section includes National commitments to LDN, in line with activities A5 and B6, and National Action Programmes, which may add additional information. The Global Land Outlook (GLO) Regional Reports discuss stakeholder engagement (A3), legal, policy and financial frameworks (B1), land tenure (B2), and safeguarding measures for indigenous peoples and local communities (B5), among other topics relevant to restoration.

Resource Type:Web-based Resource
Publication Date: 2019