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Wildlife, people and the economy

Many wildlife species have home ranges that extend beyond conservation reserve systems into modified urban, agricultural and industrial landscapes. Land use in modified landscapes often conflicts with the requirements of wildlife conservation, leading to population declines. Human population activities are already listed as a threatening process for hundreds of endangered species world-wide.  As human population size and activities increase human encroachment into, and modification of, wildlife habitat will continue to threaten Australasia’s wildlife often conflicting with the requirements of wildlife conservation.

Urbanisation and expansion of agricultural land use can also impact the health of wildlife populations. By reducing or fragmenting remaining habitat, or causing other types of disturbance such as noise or light pollution, human-related activities can place stress on wildlife and cause detrimental changes in behaviour or population dynamics.

The development of strategies to minimize threats to wildlife populations that arise as a result of human-related activity are imperative.  The need to reconcile diverse societal attitudes and conservation imperatives complicates decision-making processes and conservation efforts.

National solutions are needed to reduce the conflict that exists between agriculture, urban growth, resource development and the needs of animals. Candidate conflict species for FAUNA research include black cockatoos in Southwestern Australia, kangaroos and wallabies in agricultural areas, wombats in the semi-arid zone and urban possums.

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