Editorial: The rapid rise of streams and rivers in conservation assessment
Collier, K.J. (2011). Editorial: The rapid rise of streams and rivers in conservation assessment. Aquatic Conservation: Marine and Freshwater Ecosystems, 21(5), 397-400.
Permanent Research Commons link: http://hdl.handle.net/10289/5619
The last few years have seen a remarkable rise in the number of publications on stream or river conservation planning or assessment, culminating most recently with a special issue of Freshwater Biology (Figure 1). There is no doubt that conservation planning for lotic systems has come a long way in the last 20 years. When I first delved into this field in the late 1980s, river ecologists were struggling to interpret and apply conservation criteria originally developed for terrestrial systems, and grappling with the seemingly intractable issues of how to deal with complex linear networks, multidimensional connections, and the high temporal and spatial variability of ecosystems with a paucity of biological data. This editorial takes stock of where we are now in terms of river conservation assessment, how we got here from the initial days of conservation criteria, and how far we have come along the journey towards achieving the goal of effective and enduring stream and river conservation. The focus is on developments since 1990 when the inaugural Conservation and Management of Rivers conference in York had a major focus on conservation assessment (Boon et al., 1992).