ECOL08002 2019 Ecological Management

General Details

Full Title
Ecological Management
Transcript Title
Ecological Management
N/A %
Subject Area
ECOL - Ecology
ESCI - Environmental Science
08 - NFQ Level 8
05 - 05 Credits
Start Term
2019 - Full Academic Year 2019-20
End Term
9999 - The End of Time
Declan Feeney, Noel Connaughton, Dolores Byrne, Ana Vale
Programme Membership
SG_SENVI_H08 201900 Bachelor of Science (Honours) in Science in Environmental Science SG_SENVI_K08 201900 Level 8 Honours Degree Add-on in Science in Environmental Science SG_SSCIE_H08 201900 Bachelor of Science (Honours) in Science

This module explores the process of ecological management in order to manage ecosystem services and encourage sustainable use of natural resources. The management of a range of ecosystems and their constituent communities and populations will be explored from the environmental, policy and economic perspective. Key concepts and principles such as the ecosystem approach of the Convention on Biological Diversity, ecosystem services, adaptive management and management planning will be investigated. As part of this module students will investigate the role of ecological impact assessment and appropriate assessment in development proposals. Key policy and legislative measures designed to protect and restore ecosystems such as the Natura 2000 network, agri-environmental schemes and the EU Biodiversity Strategy will be appraised.

Learning Outcomes

On completion of this module the learner will/should be able to;


Describe the ecosystem approach to the management of land, water and living resources


Evaluate the role of adaptive management in the management of natural resources


Develop an ecological management programme for the protection of a specific habitat or species of conservation concern


Critique the role of key EU and national policy and legislative measures to meet the objectives of the EU 2020 Biodiversity Strategy

Teaching and Learning Strategies

This module will be delivered full-tme. This will include lectures and will be accompanied with both independent and directed learning. A field excursion will provide students with practical insight into ecological management decision making. This approach is expected to address student learning needs. Moodle will be used as a repository of educational resources and as a means of assessment. 

Module Assessment Strategies

Module will be assessed using a combination of end of semester final exam (60%), continuous assessment and course work (40%). The continuous assessment and course work will involve two assignment where students will be required to (i) develop management proposals for a specific habitat or species and (ii) an essay topic which demonstrate the student's ability to critically evaluate an aspect of  ecological management or natural resource

Repeat Assessments

Repeat Continuous Assessment and/or Final Exam

Indicative Syllabus

Content at the discretion of the lecturer to meet the learning outcomes

Introduction to ecological management

The ecosystem approach and ecosystem services concept

The ecological management of farmland and grazed ecosystems - an adaptive management approach

Ecological management of species and habitats of conservation concern - Natura 2000 network

The role of protected areas in ecological management and their context in Europe

Ecological impact assessment and appropriate assessment requirements in development planning

Economics in valuing biodiversity and mechanisms applied to value natural capital

Stakeholder engagement, consultation and participation in ecological management

Field excursion - which will highlight practicalities of ecological decision making 

Coursework & Assessment Breakdown

Coursework & Continuous Assessment
40 %
End of Semester / Year Formal Exam
60 %

Coursework Assessment

Title Type Form Percent Week Learning Outcomes Assessed
1 Essay Continuous Assessment Essay 20 % Week 8 2,4
2 Develop a management programme for a species/habitat Continuous Assessment Written Report 20 % Week 12 3

End of Semester / Year Assessment

Title Type Form Percent Week Learning Outcomes Assessed
1 End of semester theory exam Final Exam Closed Book Exam 60 % End of Term 1,2,4

Full Time Mode Workload

Type Location Description Hours Frequency Avg Workload
Lecture Lecture Theatre Lectures 2 Weekly 2.00
Site Visit Offsite Field trip 7.5 Once Per Semester 0.50
Independent Learning UNKNOWN Independent Learning 4.5 Weekly 4.50
Total Full Time Average Weekly Learner Contact Time 2.50 Hours

Required & Recommended Book List

Recommended Reading
2014-08-11 Wildlife Ecology, Conservation, and Management John Wiley & Sons
ISBN 1118291077 ISBN-13 9781118291078

There are several important areas of wildlife research and management that are inadequately covered in the second edition of this book. As a result, the authors have chosen to add four brand new chapters to this new edition, as well as updating several of the other chapters with more recent developments and examples. In current research there has been rapid acceptance of the non-commercial statistical software known as 'R'. In this edition the authors replace all of the programs and example code with their R equivalents. The authors have set up a server link to the textbook software examples as well as a series of modules introducing R to readers. The four new chapters cover: habitat use and selection; habitat fragmentation, movement and corridors; climate change, and; evolutionary response to disturbance. Habitat selection and use is an area with a lot of recent work. The authors have expanded the treatment of this in the third edition, to cover topics such as the ecological reasons for selective habitat use, quantitative measurement of habitat use, with particular emphasis on various approaches to resource selection, and density- resource- and risk-dependent effects on habitat use. The new chapter on habitat fragmentation, movement, and corridors discusses the historical patterns of fragmentation, the positive and negative effects of fragmentation on wildlife demography, and movement patterns in fragmented systems and the effects of corridors. Climate change is rapidly becoming a central theme in virtually all wildlife conservation plans. The new chapter provides information on the anthropomorphic effects on climate change, climate change models and variation in future scenarios, and the effects of climate change on wildlife distribution patterns, demography and behavior. Recent work has demonstrated the potential for rapid evolutionary response of wildlife populations to disturbance, whether natural or anthropomorphic in origin. The authors report on this exciting and new area of research, with particular emphasis on the evolutionary traps, measuring evolutionary response to change, and evidence of evolutionary responses to harvesting, habitat change, climate change, and ecological interactions. Brief TOC: Preface; 1. Introduction: goals and decisions, Part 1 Wildlife Ecology, 2. Biomes, 3. Ecology of individuals, 4. Food and nutrition, 5. Population growth, 6. Dispersal, dispersion, and distribution, 7. Habitat use and selection, 8. Population regulation, fluctuation and competition within species, 9. Competition and facilitation between species, 10. Predation, 11. Parasites and pathogens, 12. Consumer-resource dynamics, 13. The ecology of behavior, Part 2 Wildlife Management and Conservation, 14. Counting animals, 15. Age- and stage-structure, 16. Model evaluation and adaptive management, 17. Experimental management, 18. Conservation in theory, 19. Conservation in practice, 20. Habitat fragmentation, movement, and corridors, 21. Wildlife harvesting, 22. Wildlife control, 23. Ecosystem management and conservation, 24. Climate change, 25. Evolutionary response to disturbance

Module Resources

Non ISBN Literary Resources

FAO (2018). Biodiversity for Sustainable Agriculture. Food and Agriculture Organisation.

Mitchell, B.A., Stolton, S., Bezaury-Creel, J., Bingham, H.C., Cumming, T.L., Dudley, N., Fitzsimons, J.A., Malleret-King, D., Redford, K.H. and Solano, P. (2018). Guidelines for privately protected areas. Best Practice Protected Area Guidelines Series No. 29. Gland, Switzerland: IUCN. xii + 100pp.

Dudley, N. (Editor) (2008). Guidelines for Applying Protected Area Management Categories. Gland, Switzerland: IUCN. x + 86pp. WITH Stolton, S., P. Shadie and N. Dudley (2013). IUCN WCPA Best Practice Guidance on Recognising Protected Areas and Assigning Management Categories and Governance Types, Best Practice Protected Area Guidelines Series No. 21, Gland, Switzerland: IUCN. xxpp.

Ausden, M. (2007). Habitat Management for Conservation. A Handbook of Techniques. Oxford University Press

Burchett, S & Burchett, S. (2011). Introduction to Wildlife Conservation in Farming. Wiley-Blackwell

European Environment Agency. (2012).  Protected Areas in Europe – An Overview.  EEA Report No. 5/2012

Journal Resources

Journal of Applied Ecology

Journal of Environmental Management

Journal of Ecological Management and Restoration

URL Resources

Results-based agri-environmental pilot scheme -

National Rural Network European Innovation Partnerships -

European Environment Agency -

National Parks and Wildlife Service -

An Bord Pleanala -=


Other Resources


Additional Information

Additional resources will be made available on IT Sligo learn online system (Moodle) at the discretion of the lecturer. Will contain pdfs of powerpoint lectures and links to additional reading material for selected topics.