Auerbach N, KA Wilson, AIT Tulloch, JR Rhodes, JO Hansen and HP Possingham (2015) Effects of threat management interactions on conservation priorities. CONSERVATION BIOLOGY 29(6):1626-1635

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Decisions need to be made about which biodiversity management actions are undertaken to
mitigate threats and about where these actions are implemented. However, management actions can interact;
that is, the cost, benefit, and feasibility of one action can change when another action is undertaken. There
is little guidance on how to explicitly and efficiently prioritize management for multiple threats, including
deciding where to act. Integrated management could focus on one management action to abate a dominant
threat or on a strategy comprising multiple actions to abate multiple threats. Furthermore management
could be undertaken at sites that are in close proximity to reduce costs. We used cost-effectiveness analysis
to prioritize investments in fire management, controlling invasive predators, and reducing grazing pressure
in a bio-diverse region of southeastern Queensland, Australia. We compared outcomes of 5 management
approaches based on different assumptions about interactions and quantified how investment needed, benefits
expected, and the locations prioritized for implementation differed when interactions were taken into account.
Managing for interactions altered decisions about where to invest and in which actions to invest and had
the potential to deliver increased investment efficiency. Differences in high priority locations and actions
were greatest between the approaches when we made different assumptions about how management actions
deliver benefits through threat abatement: either all threats must be managed to conserve species or only one
management action may be required. Threatened species management that does not consider interactions
between actions may result in misplaced investments or misguided expectations of the effort required to
mitigate threats to species.