Cities and biodiversity: deciphering global patterns
What lives in the world's cities apart from our species?
7:30 PM, Saturday 27 April 2013 | Urban Solace
Cities have now become humanity’s preferred habitat on earth, with more than half of us living in urban areas. The ecological effects of cities extend well beyond their geographical boundaries. How much biodiversity do our cities contain? What ecosystem services do cities depend upon, and what ecosystem services can urban habitats generate? What role can cities play in the sustainable management of ecosystems and preservation of biodiversity worldwide? The United Nation’s Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) recently commissioned the first global assessment of urban biodiversity and ecosystem services: the Cities and Biodiversity Outlook (CBO). The first part of this ongoing assessment—CBO: Action and Policy–was released on 15 Oct 2012 at the Conference of Parties to the CBD in Hyderabad, India. Dr. Madhusudan Katti, one of the lead authors of the CBO, will present an overview of the assessment, sharing the science underlying this assessment.
Madhusudan Katti is an Associate Professor of Vertebrate Ecology in the Department of Biology at California State University, Fresno. He studies ecological and evolutionary processes in more or less human dominated ecosystems with the goal of applying our understanding of these processes towards reconciling biodiversity conservation with human development. Research in his laboratory addresses the behavioral consequences of human activities on other species, such as the effects of urban noise on bird song, and the foraging ecology of mammals and birds in cities. Madhu tries to make science part of our cultural mainstream through the Central Valley Café Scientifique, the Fresno Bird Count, and his blog.