Conservation Priorities for Terrestrial Mammals in Dobrogea Region, Romania

Document Type


Publication Date



© Iulia V. Miu et al. Based on species occurrence records of museum collections, published literature, and unpublished records shared by mammalian experts, we compiled a distribution database for 59 terrestrial mammals populating the extensively protected Dobrogea Region of Romania. The spatial patterns of mammal distribution and diversity was evaluated and systematic conservation planning applied to identify priority areas for their conservation. The spatial analyses revealed that intensive sampling was not directly correlated to mammal diversity but rather to accessibility for inventory. The spatial prioritisation analysis indicated a relatively aggregated pattern of areas with a high or low conservation value with virtually no connecting corridors between them. The significant overlap between Natura 2000 sites and national protected areas induced an over-optimistic vision of the effectiveness and representativeness of existing Natura 2000 network for species found in Annexes II and IV of the Habitats Directive. These results represent a key step in identifying core areas for the protection of mammal diversity and dispersal corridors for improved connectivity, and to guide future conservation efforts in increasing the effectiveness of the existing protected areas in the context of environmental changes.