We review common population and community-level responses of wildlife to urbanization, and discuss how: (1) the amount and configuration of land cover and land use, and (2) the alteration of resources (e.g., type of vegetation, presence of food and water) and processes (e.g., natural disturbance regimes, species interactions, intensity of human recreation) within built environments influence animals, with special emphasis on birds. Although each landscape presents unique opportunities and constraints, we suggest that all urban areas have the potential to contribute to the conservation of biodiversity. The ecological value of urban areas may be promoted if planners, managers, and homeowners consider ways to (1) encourage retention and protection of natural habitats within urbanizing landscapes, (2) plan explicitly for open spaces and natural habitats within new subdivisions, (3) use a variety of arrangements of built and open space within developments, (4) enhance and restore habitat within open spaces, (5) improve quality of developed lands (i.e., the urban matrix) rather than directing management efforts only towards parks, reserves, and open areas, and (6) celebrate urban biological diversity to foster connections between people and their natural heritage.
Marzluff, John and Rodewald, Amanda
"Conserving Biodiversity in Urbanizing Areas: Nontraditional Views from a Bird’s Perspective,"
Cities and the Environment (CATE):
2, Article 6.
Available at: http://digitalcommons.lmu.edu/cate/vol1/iss2/6